Questions to reflect

We want the anger we (rightfully?) feel about injustice, powerlessness, etc. to be a creative force. Not a destructive one. Therefor we need to transform the anger into wisdom, awareness and use the force and energy that the anger makes available for us in a conscious way. Let me therefore share with you some of the psycho-analytic wisdom that Clarissa Pinkola Estes shares with us in interpreting the story:

“‘The Crescent Moon Bear’ story belongs to a category of tales I call aperture stories. Aperture stories allow us to glimpse their hidden healing structures and deeper meanings, rather than just their overt contents. The content of this story shows us that patience will help anger, but the larger transmission is about what one must do in order to restore order in the psyche, thereby healing the angry self. In aperture stories, things are implied rather than stated. In this tale, the understructure reveals an entire model for dealing with, and healing from rage:

  • seeking a wise and calm healing force (inner or outer; in this tale: going to the healer)
  • accepting the challenge of going into psychic territory one has never approached before (climbing the mountain)
  • recognizing illusions (dealing with climbing boulders, running under trees)
  • putting one’s old, obsessive thoughts & feelings to rest (meeting the muen-botoke, restless spirits without relatives to burry them)
  • soliciting the great compassionate Self (patiently feeding the bear and the bear returning her kindness)
  • understanding the roaring side of the compassionate psyche (recognizing that the bear, the compassionate Self, is not tame)
  • the importance of bringing this psychological knowledge down to earth and in our real lives (coming down off the mountain and back into the village)
  • learning that healing is in the process of questing and practice, not in a single idea (destruction of the hair)
  • The heart of the story is: Apply all these things to one’s rage, and all will be well”

You probably have felt rage due to an internal or external power struggle – whether it was now during the completion of this module or in your real life in a conflict with an authority, with yourself, with collective rage about social injustice. When you apply all the learnings from this story – how could you heal your pain and transform the anger into a creative, constructive force? Find 5-10min to journal about this for yourself.