Ancestral Healing as a Way to Release our Pain Stories

Guest writer, Debra Morrill

Last week Julie touched on the topic of ancestral healing in her blog entry. She said, “We also carry the stories of our ancestors and can release these as well.”

Doing ancestral healing work is a powerful way to heal. Let me tell you a story from my own personal healing journey.

One of my ancestor mothers visited me during a healing session around my desire to be more present with myself. She identified herself as Wilhelmina and appeared grief-stricken, cradling a dead baby in her arms. Her husband had been away from home when her infant child died, and so the responsibility for digging the grave fell to her. It was winter, and the act of laying her beloved baby in the cold ground stripped her raw. She was not able to share the depth of this pain and grief with anyone, so it entered the family genetic stream and carried through the women in the line, finally down to me, her great-great-granddaughter, many years later.

Witnessing her pain and doing healing for her in that session helped shift the energy of unexpressed grief in the family line and within me. This healing helped me be more present with myself, including a willingness to open my heart wider and the ability to make better daily food choices.

How does ancestral healing work?

We all know from junior high health class that we receive genetic information from our ancestors that determines physical characteristics like the color of our eyes and hair and the shape of our body. Energy from our ancestors also passes through the family line. From a favorite grandmother, for instance, we may inherit a love of cooking and a warm, nurturing heart.

We can also receive our ancestors’ unhealed wounds and unfinished business. This explains why certain issues such as physical or mental illness, addictions, incest and abuse tend to travel in families.

Deep, unexpressed emotions such as grief, anger, guilt, shame and fear can also be passed to us from our ancestors. These emotions may be so powerful they show up as a visible energy in family photographs. They can make it hard for us to be present and make healthy choices.

Soul loss also travels through family lines. During a traumatic event, part of our soul may split off and go away because it doesn’t feel safe. If the soul piece doesn’t return, we have soul loss. A person with soul loss may feel a vital part of their self is missing, and they may fill that void with an addiction, including food.

The out of balance energy continues in the family line until someone pursues healing for the issue either on their own or with a shamanic healer or other energy healer. Because of a concept called circular time, just one or two family members can break the pattern and heal the wound in the family line.

The usual view of time is chronological – first A happens, then B, then C. But in the spirit world, the ordinary concepts of time fall away. Past, present and future exist at once. Ancestors long been deceased, current generations, and generations yet to come all receive healing.

By working in the spiritual realm outside of time to shift energetically at the source of the original wound, we can clear deeply entrenched energy patterns and create an opening for our whole being to return to balance.

To take it further:

• Journal about the positive inheritance you’ve received from your family line. Are there positive traits, skills, abilities you haven’t acknowledged that could serve you or support you now in your healing journey?
• Look at old family photographs. Journal about the emotions, the energy patterns, the ways of relating that you see. How have these affected you?
• Pay attention to your body. When an ancestral pattern is activated, you may feel heaviness throughout your body or pain or tightness in a certain area. Journal about how this ancestral energy feels and how it affects your body.
• Create a family tree tracking patterns of energy – illness, injuries, cause of death, relationship issues, addictions, abundance issues, etc. Journal about the common themes you notice. How do these issues manifest in your life? How do they affect your health and relationship to food?

Debra Morrill has a shamanic healing practice in Prairie du Sac, Wis. She focuses on ancestral healing and helping clients access their inner wisdom for healing. She also teaches workshops on ancestral healing. She can be reached at or 608-279-4319.

6 thoughts on “Ancestral Healing as a Way to Release our Pain Stories

  1. Thank you Debra. I too released some of my past through Ancestorial Healing Work with Debra. My family had a lineage of DRAMA and releasing this agreement freed me up. What I appreciate about Debra’s work is that she does it in a way that empowers me. I am a participant in my own shamanic healing efforts and am able to integrate the work we do together.

    Keep writing your stories, more to come next week. Yours, Julie Tallard Johnson

  2. So true! I’ve done tons of this clearing too and the benefits are truly amazing. Things you wouldn’t think of came from your ancestors! I so enjoyed Debra’s Shamanic Journeying class recently, and I encourage anyone to take her very reasonably priced classes or see her for a session. She is truly a gifted teacher, thank you!

  3. Everything you wrote Debra is so true. Healing the wounds of our ancestors helps us create space in our lives for balance and growth.
    My particular interest in this work is seeing the direct and sometimes immediate shift in relationships with family and sometimes friend. This type of work changes ones perspective and opens one to change.
    I love this type of work because it not only helps us balance today, but the fact that we have stopped the flow of negative energy in our family, we can and do affect the future,…that of our children, grandchildren and in many ways affect the future of the world. Blessings…

  4. How do i get help for ancestral healing and does it cost a lot of money? Who is the best person to help with this or is this something i can do on my own? How soon does it take effect or go away?

  5. Ecerything you post is true.Thanks for posting such a interesting blog about ancestral energy.we also have similar website, for more information please visit to our webpage.

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