87 Clarissa Pinkola Estés Quotes and Sayings

Born in Indiana (1945), Clarissa Pinkola Estés, a famous poet and certified Jungian psychoanalyst of Mexican/Native American descent, was inducted into the Arts category in 2006 for her nationwide impact.

Well-known for her book, “Women Who Run with the Wolves”, translated into 42 languages, it is a revered text exploring women’s intrinsic nature.

Overcoming life’s hardships, from being adopted to being a welfare mother, Estés, a PhD holder, has significantly contributed to the field of post-trauma recovery, serving communities affected by tragedies like the Columbine massacre and 9/11.

Clarissa Pinkola Estés

She’s been awarded and acknowledged for her tireless commitment to arts, social justice and adult literacy.

I have curated the best quotes by Clarissa Pinkola Estés below.

Best Clarissa Pinkola Estés Quotes

The soul has no gender. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

If you have yet to be called an incorrigible, defiant woman, don’t worry, there is still time. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

To reasoned people, almost everything is understandable, but evil is forever incomprehensible. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estes.

A healthy woman is much like a wolf: robust, chock-full, strong life force, life-giving, territorially aware, inventive, loyal, roving. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.


Mend the part of the world that is within your reach. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

If logic was anything, all men would ride sidesaddles… ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

When you feel bad, find a person to talk to and cry with, to tell of your anger and other helpless feelings. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

A runner is real when she takes the first step. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Friends who love you and have warmth for your creative life are the very best suns in the world. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

I hope you will go out and let stories happen to you, and that you will work them, water them with your blood and tears and your laughter till they bloom, till you yourself burst into bloom. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

If women were in charge of everything, there would be women tyrants. If black people were in charge, there would be black tyrants. If Hispanics were in charge, then Hispanic tyrants. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

To be strong does not mean to sprout muscles and flex. It means meeting one’s own numinosity without fleeing, actively living with the wild nature in one’s own way. It means to be able to learn, to be able to stand what we know. It means to stand and live. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Inspiring Clarissa Pinkola Estés Quotes

Tell the truth about your wound, and then you will get a truthful picture of the remedy to apply to it. Don’t pack whatever is easiest or most available into the emptiness. Hold out for the right medicine. You will recognize it because it makes your life stronger rather than weaker. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

When seeking guidance, don’t ever listen to the tiny-hearted. Be kind to them, heap them with blessing, cajole them, but do not follow their advice. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Stories are medicine. They have such power; they do not require that we do, be, act anything – we need only listen. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

To be ourselves causes us to be exiled by many others, and yet to comply with what others want causes us to be exiled from ourselves. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Rather than chairs and tables, I preferred the ground, trees, and caves, for in those places I felt I could lean against the cheek of God. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Writing, real writing, should leave a small sweet bruise somewhere on the writer . . . and on the reader. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

When women are relegated to moods, mannerisms, and contours that conform to a single ideal of beauty and behavior, they are captured in both body and soul, and are no longer free. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

For myself, solitude is rather like a folded-up forest that I carry with me everywhere and unfurl around myself when I have need. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Top Clarissa Pinkola Estés Quotes

It is in the middle of misery that so much becomes clear. The one who says, ‘Nothing good came of this’ is not yet listening. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Mindful choosing of friends and lovers, not to mention teachers, is critical to remaining conscious, remaining intuitive, remaining in charge of the fiery light that sees and knows. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Solitude is not an absence of energy or action, as some believe, but is rather a boon of wild provisions transmitted to us from the soul. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Anytime we feed soul, it guarantees increase. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

To love means to embrace and at the same time to withstand many endings, and many many beginnings- all in the same relationship. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

When a great ship is in harbor and moored, it is safe, there can be no doubt. But that is not what great ships are built for. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.


Be wild; that is how to clear the river. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Modern storytellers are the descendants of an immense and ancient community of holy people, troubadours, bards, griots, cantadoras, cantors, traveling poets, bums, hags and crazy people. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Since time out of mind, a considered act of heroism has been the cure for stultifying ambivalence. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

“Healthy wolves and healthy women share certain psychic characteristics: keen sensing, playful spirit, and a heightened capacity for devotion. Wolves and women are relational by nature, inquiring, possessed of great endurance and strength. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

A woman who is starved for her real soul-life may look ‘cleaned up and combed’ on the outside, but on the inside she is filled with dozens of pleading hands and empty mouths. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

When a woman speaks her truth, fires up her intention and feeling, stays tight with the instinctive nature, she is singing, she is living in the wild breath-stream of the soul. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

The predation of wolves and women by those who misunderstand them is strikingly similar. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Ritual is one of the ways in which humans put their lives in perspective, whether it be Purim, Advent, or drawing down the moon. Ritual calls together the shades and specters in people’s lives, sorts them out, puts them to rest. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Profound Clarissa Pinkola Estés Quotes

You must become an activist if you are going to live the natural life. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

The point of art is not simply to express ourselves, but to create an external, concrete form in which the soul of our lives can be evoked and contained. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

I hope you will go out and let stories happen to you. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Though her soul requires seeing, the culture around her requires sightlessness. Though her soul wishes to speak its truth, she is pressured to be silent. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

The deterioration of symbols is natural. They wear out, needing to be reclaimed, recreated; returned to the spirit. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

To love pleasure takes little. To love truly takes a hero who can manage his own fear. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Be proud of your scars. They have everything to do with your strength, and what you’ve endured. They’re a treasure map to the deep self. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

You know the best thing about having a house? You get to plant whatever you want in the yard and watch it grow. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Ours is not the task of fixing the entire world at once, but of stretching out to mend the part of the world that is within our reach. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

The wild woman is fluent in the language of dreams, images, passion, and poetry. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

The way to maintain one’s connection to the wild is to ask yourself what it is that you want. This is the sorting of the seed from the dirt. One of the most important discriminations we can make in this matter is the difference between things that beckon to us and things that call from our souls. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

The desire to force love to live only in its most positive form is what causes love ultimately to fall over dead. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Go out in the woods, go out. If you don’t go out in the woods nothing will ever happen and your life will never begin. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Famous Clarissa Pinkola Estés Quotes

The craft of questions, the craft of stories, the craft of the hands – all these are the making of something, and that something is soul. Anytime we feed soul, it guarantees increase. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

I am built close to the ground and of extravagant body. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

My brain has no heart, and my heart has no brain. That’s why when I speak my mind, I appear heartless and when I do what’s in my heart I seem thoughtless. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Without art we live under the illusion that there is only time, and not eternity. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Art is not meant to be created in stolen moments only. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

It’s not by accident that the pristine wilderness of our planet disappears as the understanding of our own inner wild nature fades. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

This kind of forgetting does not erase memory, it lays the emotion surrounding the memory to rest. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

To create one must be willing to be stone stupid, to sit upon a throne on top of a jackass and spill rubies from one’s mouth. Then the river will flow, then we can stand in the stream of it raining down. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Asking the proper questions is the central action of transformation. Questions are the key that causes the secret doors of the psyche to swing open. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Stories are medicine. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Any time I find medicine that’s helpful, I share it with everyone I know. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

The most important thing is to hold on, hold out, for your creative life, for your solitude, for your time to be and do, for your very life. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

We all wish to be brave and strong in the face of disaster. We all wish to be looked up to for our endurance and efforts to help others. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Within every woman there is a wild and natural creature, a powerful force, filled with good instincts, passionate creativity, and ageless knowing. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

All strong souls first go to hell before they do the healing of the world they came here for. If we are lucky, we return to help those still trapped below. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

I learned about the sacred art of self decoration with the monarch butterflies perched atop my head, lightning bugs as my night jewelry, and emerald-green frogs as bracelets. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Asking the proper question is the central act of transformation! ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

To be poor and be without trees, is to be the most starved human being in the world. To be poor and have trees, is to be completely rich in ways that money can never buy. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

I have to go to the woods, and I have to meet the wolf, or else my life will never begin.
~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

We practice conscious forgetting by refusing to summon up the fiery material, we refuse to recollect. To forget is an active, not a passive endeavor. It means to not haul up certain materials, or turn them over and over, to not work oneself up by repetitive thought, picture, or emotion. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Latina women are proud to be called Mrs. That simply means that we have a family. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

How does one know if she has forgiven? You tend to feel sorrow over the circumstance instead of rage, you tend to feel sorry for the person rather than angry with him. You tend to have nothing left to say about it all. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Nurture is like psychic Wheaties. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

It’s not the failure that holds us back but the reluctance to begin over again that causes us to stagnate. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

At bottom is the best soil to sow and grow something new again. In that sense, hitting bottom, while extremely painful, is also the sowing ground. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

I became married at a young age and had two daughters and divorced at 26. I had to go on welfare to make ends meet. I had no way to support myself. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Long ago the word alone was treated as two words, all one. To be all one meant to be wholly one, to be in oneness, either essentially or temporarily. That is precisely the goal of solitude, to be all one. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Don’t waste your time hating a failure. Failure is a greater teacher than success. Listen, learn, go on. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Dogs are the magicians of the universe. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Inspirational Clarissa Pinkola Estés Quotes

Story is far older than the art of science and psychology, and will always be the elder in the equation no matter how much time passes. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

When a creature is exposed to violence, it will tend to adapt to that disturbance, so that when the violence ceases or the creature is allowed its freedom, the healthy instinct to flee is hugely diminished, and the creature stays put instead. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

The psyches and souls of women also have their own cycles and seasons of doing and solitude, running and staying, being involved and being removed, questing and resting, creating and incubating, being of the world and returning to the soul-place. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Just because a woman is silent does not mean she agrees. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

If you’ve lost focus, just sit down and be still. Take the idea and rock it to and fro. Keep some of it and throw some away, and it will renew itself. You need do no more. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

So, let us push on now, and remember ourselves back to the wild soul. Let us sing her flesh back onto our bones. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Tears are a river that takes you somewhere…Tears lift your boat off the rocks, off dry ground, carrying it downriver to someplace better. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.


Failure is a greater teacher than success. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

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. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

Our own sorrows seem heavy enough, even when lifted by certain long-term joys. But watching others hurt is the breaker of most any heart. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

One of the most calming and powerful actions you can do to intervene in a stormy world is to stand up and show your soul. Struggling souls catch light from other souls who are fully lit and willing to show it. ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés.

So these were the 87 top Clarissa Pinkola Estés quotes and sayings.

If you like these quotes and sayings, then you can also read my other posts on Emily Dickinson quotes and Paul Walker quotes.

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Chandan Negi
Chandan Negi

I’m the Founder of Internet Pillar - I love sharing quotes and motivational content to inspire and motivate people - #quotes #motivation #internetpillar