A full three day retreat to honour and celebrate our ancestral family Our ancestral history can cloud our personal awareness of our true self, shadows from childhood dictate our feelings and the way we think just as our parents were clouded by their parents and so on. Generations of our family had no time to soul search as we do, so by helping to heal their pain in us, we are helping to heal them too. At this time of year we can clarify and integrate what we have experienced from our relationship with our family and ancestral connection. To determine what is valuable, wise and useful and learning to let go of what is not.
Creating an altar for your ancestors Creating an altar is one of the most profound ways in which we can honour and reconnect with important ancestors. An altar can be a focus for meditation, for rituals and regular ceremonies that remind you of past influences and current issues you may need to address. An altar dedicated to your guardian ancestor reflects his or her significance. An altar can be the focus of ceremonies and rituals you can perform to remember your ancestor, during anniversaries of marriages, birthdays and on other important dates.
Choose a corner, mantel piece, fireplace or table in your home for your altar. You might also like to consider a place in your garden for contemplation, meditation or prayer. Give careful thought to the objects to place on your altar that represents your chosen ancestor. Possibilities include an object from their place of origin, a traditional or religious object or a personal item such as clothing, jewellery, pictures and so on. Choose one object to symbolize their nurturing, wisdom and blessings. This could, for example, be a crystal such as rose quartz for love, amethyst for wisdom, pearl for wise emotions or a blue stone for communication. Objects from nature could also be helpful. For example shells to represent emotions or a connection to ancestors across the sea, or dried flowers from their birthplace.
On anniversaries and celebrations place flowers on your altar to offer your ancestor love and spiritual connection from the earth, burn incense to cleanse and protect. Write down prayers and wishes and place them under the central object on your altar for when you need to communicate with your ancestor. Ask your ancestor for his or her wisdom and inspiration when you are having any difficulties in your life, questions or problems that need solving.
A Meditation exercise to your guardian ancestors:
- Find a quiet space where you can be alone.
- Sit or lie down comfortably with your back straight, either against a chair or on the ground.
- Make sure that you are breathing slowly and deeply into your solar plexus.
- As you breathe follow your breath right down into the lower part of your solar plexus and release any tension.
- Call upon your ancestral family guardian angel to send his or her light and essence to you.
- Imagine this light becoming more powerful, more real with each breathe; let it brighten your aura and continue to spread throughout your body.
- Imagine you are standing under a shower of light as clear pure water, coming down through the top of your head, and then washing throughout your body.
- When you feel that your body has connected with the ancestral light, call upon them with a simple prayer:
‘I ask that my true ancestral guiding spirit to come forward now and show me their power and protection to guide me in my current life at this time.’
- Imagine that as you are lying down bathing in this light. You will begin to sense a presence around your body.
- Ask your ancestor for insights into a problem that currently preoccupies you. Ask them to open your heart and mind to new perspectives on how to deal with it.
- Continue to breathe deeply and allow your mind to flow with your guardian spirit.
- To close down take a deep breath and thank your ancestor for coming to connect with you.
- Allow the light to be released from your body back into the sky.
- Wiggle your toes and clench your fists to awaken out of the meditation.
- Give thanks.