Modern 'Griot' Story-telling
Our vision is to reconnect with traditional African oral traditions and re-fashion them as a modern-day Griot storying and remembering of oral histories, through embodied healing-ritual. It is important in constellations work to honour those who have gone before us. The story of Ancestral Constellations connects the past to the present and the traditions of Africa to Western systemic practice.
Bert Hellinger the 'father' of the systemic constellations method was born in Germany and after training to be a Jesuit priest, moved to South Africa and spent 16 years there. He set up a school and worked with many Zulu families and communities. After he returned to Germany he spoke little about his time there but acknowledged that he was influenced by the traditional wisdom of Africa and Zulu family traditions.
In my work, I honour both the Western and African constellations lineages, systemic practice and traditional indigenous ancestral knowledge. Malidoma Some, Dagara Elder, author and teacher who has experience of working collaboratively with family constellations practitioners suggests that..........
"Family Constellation is an old ritual practice rooted in Africa that sees individual challenges as linked to some forms of entanglement, the nature of which needs to be understood and dealt with for healing to happen. In it, the crisis of the individual is the crisis of the collective or the community."
Malidoma Some E-Village News - September 2010
There are examples of African Indigenous 'ways of knowing', that can be found within the constellations process and also relates to other traditions from around the world. They speak to levels of authority, rules of respect and the different orders within the relationship system, they include....
- Call and repeat patterns with clarifying or healing sentences that the facilitator leads
- A clearly defined order to how family members stand in relation to each other.
- Rituals like ‘bowing’ to elders and acknowledging authority and precedence
- Ancestors being welcomed into the process as a part of a transgenerational map
The vision of Ancestral Constellations is to re-connect with these ancestral traditions and to invert the process so that the embedded oral traditions can be adapted to better fit the families and communities who use our services.