Reflections

Post-Colonial Ancestral Wounding, The Problem with ‘Not Seeing Race’ and Moving Forwards Collectively.

I’ve noticed that within the spiritual communities that I’m part of, there is often a lack of acknowledgement or understanding when it comes to the impact of colonisation & consequent ancestral wounding. So I’ve decided to share some of my thoughts, feelings and opinions on this based on my lived experience, learning & healing journey. Brave, I know but uncomfortable as this topic is I feel it is fundamental to mindfully explore this so that we can all move forwards.

Often within these groups, I’ve found some spiritual minded people will claim that ‘we are all one’ and that any talk of colonisation or race is purely divisive. Whilst I agree that we are all one race and that the notion of separating people by race is divisive, I also feel that it is a little too late for that following several centuries of colonisation by dominant cultures which was/is incredibly violent & cruel towards indigenous communities/cultures (in particular but not limited to poc) with long lasting damaging impact/trauma for generations.

This can’t just be forgotten or swept under the rug. If you’ve taken a peek by now you’ll see that our collective ‘shadow’ is actually overspilling with this and this is in some desperate need of healing. We are all affected by ancestral wounding by default of having been born at this time. It is everybody’s work to heal this, should you chose to.

 

 

The good news is that we can all heal this, collectively. Those with indigenous ancestry/heritage your role at this time is to heal, to be supported, to lead in this, use your voice to speak your truth, and to reclaim power. Remember your self love and self care are revolutionary acts.

Those without indigenous ancestry/heritage, your role in this is to be an ally as best you can. You have the power to listen, support and to stand by those who are healing from this with respect, understanding & love. Accept that you may not be included in some of these healing spaces and that is okay. You can chose to either uphold this system which is oppressive to so many or you can help dismantle it in this way or whichever way you choose. This will be healing for you too.

Here is a non-definitive list as a starting point for those ready to heal:-

  1. Acknowledge the atrocities & the impact of colonisation on yourself.
  2. Sit with the discomfort, it was/is horrific.
  3. Allow yourself to process grief, loss, anger. Utilise your own self-healing skills and/or reach out to practitioners who can support you in this.
  4. Gather with other likeminded folk, so you can heal together.
  5. Repeat affirmations that you find useful e.g. “I am worthy. I am loved. I belong” x3.
  6. Give yourself plenty of time & space. Rest. A lot.
  7. Be gentle with yourself.
  8. Do not judge another persons journey or healing process, just trust your own.
  9. There is no one way of doing this but the best way I feel, is led by love & compassion.
Please note: this work is best done supported by/with a practitioner you trust and within a supportive community.

 

So, this is by no means a one size fits all solution of a very complex topic, it is a healing process and this is just one way to begin. I have infused this message with Reiki and I truly hope it serves you well.

Did you find this useful? What works for you? Feel free to leave any questions, comments and share your thoughts & recommendations too!

Big Love,

Em Desouza, Creative Arts Practitioner

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Reflections

Vulnerability as a Strength in Working with People.

Lately, I feel I have been dancing with vulnerability and authenticity. A lot. In working as a practitioner with others, and also feeling quite run down/frustrated/blocked/angry. I often feel nervous about not being ‘perfect’, smiley, happy and positive all the time but the truth is that isn’t actually always helpful to. The truth is that I’m not the only one dancing with vulnerability & authenticity. Right?

In my practice, it is essential that I work on issues that arise within myself and I do this through self inquiry, counselling and supervision. It is only through sitting with these difficult, horrible emotions that I can see through to the other side. Its as the late Leonard Cohen beautifully puts it, “There is a crack, a crack in everything. Thats how the light gets in”.

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It is not easy to heed the call to do this self work, to firstly accept that it needs doing, and then to make the time to give it the attention it needs, putting aside all of the tasks that were nicely distracting from actually having to deal with it.

It may seem logical to think that a practitioner working with others who experiences hardships, challenges and is vulnerable may be ill equipped but I’d like to challenge that notion. In a climate whereby more and more people are dealing with pressures on personal, social and global levels, none of us can afford to bury our heads and pretend that it isn’t happening. It is happening. The beautiful thing is you are not alone in this, none of us are.

So what I’m talking about here isn’t burying your heads, no. What I’m talking about is the deep inner work of acknowledging, honouring, and allowing these difficult emotions to be expressed & even witnessed where possible (trusted person/counselling/supervision).

It is through this work that I have found, time and time again, a deepened sense of connection with the people I am working with. It is through healing these parts of myself that I am able to hold/better understand the very same emotions that may arise in them. It has directly increased my capacity for patience, compassion and ability to love more fully.

I wholeheartedly encourage you to do the same if you feel called to, to reach out for support with this and reap the rewards of the practice.

Big Love,

Em Desouza, Creative Arts Practitioner

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