When Love Cripples
Have you ever loved someone so much that you would die for them? Or maybe suffer beyond repair for their joy? We have all heard stories of such brave warriors. But what if we are no different than them.
There was a period in my life when I was consumed by suffering. The people I witnessed suffer, were so good that I couldn’t understand why they were faced with such difficulties. All my conversations with spiritual teachers pointed to Past life karma. That felt cruel and a cop out of an explanation.
Then through a series of interesting experiences, I came across the concept of Systemic Family Constellations. Constellations reveals that there are hidden ancestral and collective forces that influence our lives. The interplay of these forces with our consciousness brings us variety of experiences, including suffering or joy.
The basic premise of this healing modality is that human beings love deeply and profoundly at a soul level. And in this profound love we make extraordinary gestures to the point of reaching suffering for a living or dead ancestor. This was the soothing perspective on suffering I was looking for.
So, who are these people that we love? And how do we end up making sacrifices for them?
These people can be anyone – our living family members, our dead ancestors, our extended relatives or our land. And we make sacrifices by repeating their past unhappiness or atoning for their mistakes in our life. We do this from a place of love. This love can be called as immature, crippling or blind, but it’s still love.
Let’s look some of the ways this shows up in everyday life –
– One day we end up making a bad financial decision and lose all our money. We keep beating ourselves for making that mistake but we never stop to think what force got over us.
– A woman is angry with patriarchy, angry with the dynamics between her parents and angry with her mother for being silent. But as an adult, she finds herself in a similar position struggling to use her voice.
– A couple is constantly fighting. Despite their best intentions love doesn’t flow easily. Are they not compatible? Or is there a deeper force influencing their marriage?
These are very simple examples but in real life this shows up with such complexity that it’s hard to see the connections, let alone accept it.
Children seldom or never dare to live a happier or more fulfilling life than their parents. Unconsciously they remain loyal to unspoken family traditions that work invisibly. Family Constellations are a way of discovering underlying family bonds and forces that have been carried unconsciously over several generations. – Bertold Ulsamer
If you find yourself facing familiar difficulties, some of these ideas may help –
~ Relax – Know that you are not crazy and it’s not your fault. There are forces bigger than you at play here.
~ Family Tree – You could draw a family tree to explore the similarities between your difficulties with your ancestor’s lives.
~ Search for a pattern – Try to go as far back as you can until you see a pattern emerging. You may have to collect some information about your ancestors.
~ Connecting of the Hearts – In a meditation imagine talking to the ancestor where the situation started. You can pour your heart to them and also listen to their story.
~ Find a healing movement – When it feels right, make simple statements like “I see you. I see how you suffered. I see how this suffering traveled in our lineage. I take you in my heart. Please bless me to live a happier life and please show me how. Please show me how to love in a healthy way.