Sunday, December 15, 2019

Healing with the Aid of Ancestors {Ritual and Herbal Powder Recipe}

I had been inspired by two events and two plants this year to finally do an Ancestral healing ritual this past Samhain. This is something that I had been wishing to do for a few years now, and had worked my way towards it on some counts, but also had been avoiding doing so, not ready to face or let go of some pain and anger. 

The first event of inspiration happened when I was at Tlachtga/Hill of Ward this past Bealtaine, after hearing the story of Tlachtga, I knew that I had wanted to do something on Samhain to honour her. In her story she is deeply betrayed by her jealous father, which lead to her rape and impregnation, causing her to birth three sons, which also ultimately lead to her death. But instead of her last words being of vengeance and hatred, they were of hope and love, the naming of her three sons: Cuma, Muach and Doirb. And as long as those names are remembered, Ireland and her people shall be safe from catastrophe. To me Tlachtga is a figure of strength and sovereignty; not necessarily encouraging forgiveness and most certainly not forgetting, but urging one forward to live their full potential, irregardless of what life throws at them. Also while at the Hill of Ward, I had my first of many experiences during my time in Ireland of communing with various nature spirits, this time being with Stinging Nettle. Already an ally, I was reminded of the many lessons that this plant can teach. One of them being that just like the pain one can get through harvesting them, it could be well worth going through the experience for the potential of nourishment and healing that both the plant and painful experience can bring. For only through such experiences can we truly gain the insights needed to heal ourselves and help others with the same. 

The second event of inspiration came this past summer during a get together up north, while visiting our family cemetery in a small village. The whole place was carpeted by beautiful Selfheal/Heal-all, another beloved plant ally. I harvested some, knowing that it would be perfect for helping heal family and ancestral wounds. 

While I did initialize the healing on Samhain, it is a work in progress, so this is something that I continue to do. I suppose it could be said that this has been incorporated into my devotional work with my Ancestors, hopefully that is mutually beneficial for both the living and the dead. 

I've decided to share some of that here, in case others are looking to do similar work with the aid of their own Ancestors.

Ancestral Herbal Healing Powder

A powder like this could easily be used in charms, in an incense, or as I have done and made it for adding to candles for ritual use. *Wearing gloves would be a good idea while making this, as some of the ingredients can be toxic. This was made on the full moon before Samhain, which happened to be a Sunday, to me a great time for healing work. I spent a good long while grinding everything in a mortar and pestle, in a meditative state focusing on healing. The mixture was then left under the light of the full moon to be blessed for nine days.

Stinging Nettle
Ancestral Rose Thorns
Wild Rose
Tansy {can be toxic}
Apple Leaves
Bleeding Hearts {can be toxic}
Linden Leaf and Flower

Ancestral Healing Ritual

I carved on a black candle in Ogham down three separate sides "Clann" {Family}, "Shinsir" {Ancestors} and "Leighgeas" {Healing}, and over each carving placed three personal effects to consecrate the candle within the Three Realms: blood {Talam/Land}, saliva {Muir/Sea} and breath {Nem/Sky}. Then on each carving I rubbed some of the herbal powder from above, three times on each.

The candle was then placed in a silver bowl of Ancestral graveyard dirt, surrounded by three poppy pods, one at each point of the Ogham carving. Under this is kept names and situations being focused on for healing. Before being lit, the candle was anointed with nine drops of a healing oil, and sprinkled with more of the herbal powder. This is something I do every time before the candle is lit for a working.

Of course before beginning the ritual, I always leave offerings to those who I am asking help from, which I encourage everyone to do. During the ritual there are prayers, meditation and often divination as well, which I also encourage others to do, tailored to their own needs and personal practices. 

It's never an easy thing, the process of healing. For those on that same journey, I hope that this post might be of some use to to you. 

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