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Ancestors are drawing the attention of many of us

Posted Oct 13 2010 1:32pm
In the popular "Who Do You Think You Are?" television series, filmmaker Spike Lee traveled to Georgia to learn about his once–enslaved ancestors. He used census records, U.S. slave schedules dating to 1860 and historical newspapers to find answers. He was able to visit the actual land his great–great–grandfather owned after emancipation. Spike then headed to Texas to meet a descendant of his family’s former slave owner, a woman who is most likely his distant cousin.

The discoveries of Spike's journey mirrored the exciting discoveries of celebrities including Brooke Shields, Susan Sarandon, Emmitt Smith and Sarah Jessica Parker as investigated the roots of their family trees.

It's interesting to watch the surge of interest in genealogy, family history and ancestors with the general public as I study and practice Systemic Constellation Work, the experiential healing process that explores the invisible yet very powerful energetic connections and disconnections within our larger family systems.

In last night's session, our group worked to help a men connect with the love of his father while also strengthening the father's connection within the family system. Our summer Constellation samplers have been very well received and we are adding  more groups, including a women-only retreat on Saturday, Oct. 30, and shorter programs in November at Lake House and other locations. See calendar for more details and to sign up .

Constellation Work is an experiential process that moves to a deeper level than conventional counseling. This means that the impact of this work can be more immediate and more lasting than techniques that address the mind alone.
The process reveals unconscious hidden dynamics within a family system that impact people in subtle yet important ways. There are many difficult fates and traumatic experiences in previous generations may continue to create havoc as a hidden pattern in the present generation:
Early and premature deaths
Ostracized family members
Children of separated or divorced parents
Adopted children
Abortions, miscarriages and stillbirths
Survivors of war, holocaust, genocide or terrorism

Practitioners employ principles of Constellation Work in a variety of ways. In a group setting, a person chooses members from the group to represent some of their family members. As they are placed at various points in an open space, these representatives feel the effects of the family dynamics. The facilitator works with the representatives to restore balance, respect, dignity and love between members of the family. The method was developed by Bert Hellinger, psychotherapist and philosopher.
Newcomers are welcome to involve themselves at their own comfort level. Observing, as well as participating as a representative, is equally inspiring and moving in these groups.  I am working with colleague Ron Anderson to write the book, "Psychodrama And Systemic Constellation Work: New Directions For Action Methods, Experiential Therapy And Energy Healing," scheduled to be published by Jessica Kingsley Publishers in 2011.

In the meanwhile, here is a message about ancestors from a Mayan elder about the Mayan view of ancestors and their message for the world
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