"Without realizing it, we often carry the ancestors on our backs. Because their memory patterns deeply embedded within our vital tissues and cells, we continually re-enact patterns that originate in the history and memory of our family lines. When we do not recognize ancestral traumas we are likely to ferry them into every aspect of our lives. But we can resolve our karmic history through honoring ancestors; we can trade in hurt and grief and illness for celestial guidance." -Maya Tiwari
What is Honoring the Ancestors?
Pitri Paksha is a very special time of year where the Ayurvedic custom is to Honor Our Ancestors. This period of 15 days starts at the autumnal full moon in September and ends at the new moon. It's said that during this time the veil between worlds is the thinnest, so we can easily communicate our love and respect to our ancestors...and be heard. Millions of people around the world will be doing these powerful practices at this time for their ancestors, as they have been for thousands of years.
Why do we Honor Our Ancestors?
As we recover ancestral memories, we uncover and dissolve subconscious/unconscious memories that can block the smooth flow of our lives. Honoring Our Ancestors is the first step in reclaiming our true spiritual heritage, which is knowing the truth of who we are and our higher purpose in life.
The Vedas teach that exist as interdependent beings, linked to the universe through our ancestry. The Vedas also inform us that one of the highest universal laws is repaying our debt to our ancestors, including parents, grandparents and loved ones who have passed.
Our ancestral lineage is not limited to those with whom we share a genetic heritage. Our ancestors include teachers, mentors, friends and lovers who have inspired and shaped our lives. Our ancestors continue to sustain us with their spirit, energy and memory patterns long after they have passed.
As part of the law of karma we carry the good and bad memories passed down from our immediate family. If we don't resolve these memories, we may struggle with our own true path. The open and honest acknowledgment of our ancestor's spiritual emotional and physical challenges allows for our deeper healing and resolution.
So, we begin healing by remembering our indelible link to our past. When we do, we connect with the stream of consciousness that flows from generation to generation. Whether our ancestors were saints, rascals, or plain average folks, we learn to never judge or condemn them. Your parents and grandparents strengths give you the power to repair your inherited weaknesses. Their weaknesses enable you to see your own and strengthen your resolve as you journey into consciousness. Remember, because of their sacrifices you've been given life and the unique and sacred opportunity to regain the knowledge of your spirit.
What if I'm Adopted or don't know about my Ancestors?
Many of us have lost connection with our lineage. Participating in the Honoring Our Ancestor ritual is a great way to reconnect emotionally and spiritually to the memory and vibration of our forebears, even if we don't have specific historical details.
Even if you don't know your biological roots and you have no way of finding out about them you can follow the instructions, keeping in mind that the intention of this ritual is deep healing ...both for yourself and your ancestors. As you discover ancestral memory, your power of intuition will grow and you'll be given insights about your forebears. You'll understand their strengths and vulnerabilities as you begin to examine your own. Once you see the patterns that connect you to your immediate family, you will reconcile the ways you've been affected by your heritage and begin living your full human potential.