How do Family Constellations work?
Bert Hellinger discovered that families had an energy field within which they organised themselves in particular ways to ensure the survival and continuation of the system as a whole. Love is the principal force guiding the energy field of a family system.
Rupert Sheldrake (biologist, researcher and author) calls this energy field the morphogenetic field. He has observed that the morphogenetic field has inbuilt memory. In a social group like a family, this results in the repetition of particular patterns, established in the past, across generations.
So an individual and their problems are seen in the context of their family system. This method of therapy allows for a compassionate and fearless seeing of the patterns that hold a family system together. From this come ‘resolutions’ to an individual’s problems.
What happens in a session of Family Constellations?
A facilitator of FC will ‘open’ a constellation for a client-seeker in a group or an individual session.
In a group session, the facilitator will ask the client-seeker a few questions to gather basic information about the issue, their family and the outcome they wish for. After this, the client-seeker is asked to pick representatives for what they want/ for members of their family and arrange them in space (according to an internal image they may have of these relationships).
The representatives then draw from the energy field of the client-seeker’s system and report on their experiences, as they arise in the body, to the facilitator. (This is the phenomenological approach.)
The facilitator is informed by the energy field, the representative experience and the facts from the client-seeker in seeking a resolution to the issue at hand.
In individual sessions, the same work is done using figures and objects in place of human representatives.
What is the philosophy of Family Constellation work?
The Orders of Love dictate how family systems organize themselves.
Belonging – This principle is about the human need for connection and belonging. All members of a family system hav eequal right to belong.
Balance – This principle is about the human need for equilibrium. All family systems involve giving and taking/receiving of love and resources. Equilibrium is maintained when those who give and those who take do so within their capacity.
Order – This principle is about the human need for order and refers to the hierarchy inherent in nature where those who come first precede those who come after. Thereby, the parents come before children, elders come before the younger ones etc.
Three consciences guide an individual in fulfilling these needs:
Personal conscience which helps a person decide on what is right or wrong for them. It helps them make choices in their lives.
Group conscience is impersonal and amoral and it guides the whole system towards balance at all times.
Spiritual conscience is what we experience when we feel a deep sense of unity with the world and an unshakeable wellbeing. The spiritual conscience takes us beyond our personal and group affiliations.
How do I know I this is the right kind of therapy for me?
There are many forms of therapy available today and any might work for you. The only way to know if FC is the right kind of therapy for you is to come in for a session and experience it.
Sometimes, many forms of therapy, medication and more (mindfulness, meditation, prayer) seem inadequate and the person feels stuck in a repeating cycle of physical, material or psychological ill health. Family Constellations can help in such cases and is one step towards wellness.
Who can do this work?
Anyone can do this work as long as they have enough physical and psychological health to be present for a session. Please get in touch so we can ascertain if this is possible for you.
I offer this work in individual sessions to teenagers between 13 and 18 years and adults (individuals, couples and the elderly). Parents/guardians will need to contact me in case the client-seeker is a minor. These sessions can be done in-person or online. Group sessions are for adults only.
Who can benefit from this work?
People struggling with chronic pain/illness/fatigue, depression, inexplicable anxiety and fear, bipolarity, a sense of being lost/directionless, long term grief, stuckness, a lack of joy, failed relationships, financial difficulties, PCOD, fibromyalgia, addictions, trauma and many other physical and psychological health issues have felt ease, relief and transformation through Family Constellations Therapy.
My own exploration of therapeutic work began with grief and loss and the questions they brought forth. People arrive at this work from many different experiences including plain curiosity.
How long are group sessions? May I participate as an observer?
Group sessions, called The Heart Of It, are usually 4 hour/day-long affairs. Participants may work on an issue or just witness and be available as a representative for others. Please look at the Home page for details on the latest offering.
How long is an individual session and how do I book one?
An individual session is between 60 -100 minutes long. Please write to firstname.lastname@example.org to book a session or leave me a message on the Contact page of this site.