Saturday, April 2, 2011
The Outcast's Journey
"If you have attempted to fit whatever mold and failed to do so, you are probably lucky. You may be an exile of some sort, but you have sheltered your soul. There is an odd phenomenon that happens when one keeps trying to fit and fails. Even though the outcast is driven away, she is at the same time driven right into the arms of her psychic and true kin, whether these be a course of study, an art form, or a group of people. It is worse to stay where one does not belong at all than to wander about lost for a while and looking for the psychic and soulful kinship one requires. It is never a mistake to search for what one requires. Never.
There is something useful in all this torque and tension. Something in the [ugly] duckling is being tempered, being made strong by this exile. While this situation is not one we would wish on anyone for any reason, its effect is similar to pure natural carbon under pressure producing diamonds--it leads eventually to a profound magnitude and clarity of psyche.
There is an aspect of alchemy, wherin the base substance of lead is pounded about and beaten down. While exile is not a thing to desire for the fun of it, there is an unexpected gain from it; the gifts of exile are many. It takes out weakness by the pounding. It removes whininess, enables acute insight, heightens intuition, grants the power of keen observation and perspective that the 'insider' can never achieve."
- Clarissa Pinkola Estés, Women Who Run With The Wolves