Samhain season gives us the opportunity to work more closely with our ancestors. One of my favorite recent practices during this time is healing ancestral traumas and wounds in my dreams.
Recently, I had several dreams that my deceased grandfather and I visited a house he used to live in. We stood on the property line and watched from a distance as a strange spirit mined something that can only be described as trash from the house and the land. Its work left giant pits in the land.
We visited again, weeks later, as the spirit sported through the garbage with a large machine that gathered alike things together in towering piles.
Now, about a month later, we stood on the property line again behind a new chainlink fence. The strange spirit was there again. It washed the trash in a lake that had not been there before, and continued sorting it. Then, it began to haul the garbage away in fine, white nets.
My grandpa appeared lighter, energetically–younger and more at peace. He sighed contentedly. “This will really take a lot off my mind.” I got the impression that this would give him some much-needed mental rest.
We may not understand all of the work that the spirits of the dead do, but I believe we can help them. I believe this kind of work can surface during Samhain season. The thinning of the veils between the worlds of the living and the dead allows us to connect with our beloved dead more than usual and heal our ancestral trauma with more awareness.
Samhain season usually gives me wild dreams. I’ve written before about waking up dead tired from what I suspect was heavy spirit work, possibly connected with my beloved dead.
However, I don’t believe that this activity isn’t limited to Samhain season as many of us define it (between Mabon and Yule). These kinds of experiences have been happening to me for a few months now. Many of my friends have mentioned that they’ve been feeling the same way and have been motivated to do ancestral healing. This makes me wonder if we’ve just had an incredibly strong Samhain season this year.
Tips For Healing Ancestral Wounds in Dreams
There’s no guarantee that what you do will necessarily heal your ancestors, but I suspect that this work is happening because I’ve been paying a lot more attention to my ancestral altar. It’s set up year-round as a permanent altar. It has my newly framed photographs and some trinkets that belonged to them.
Over the last year, I have increased the amount of food and beverage offerings. My offerings and practices changed from my early Samhain-only tradition to become a year-round tradition. Every week or two, I put a few scraps of my meal into a little bowl and leave it before them. However, after my dreamwork, I feel this is a minimum, and I’d like to do it more often.
If your ancestors tell you they’d like some kind of food or drink in particular, do your best to give it to them. Even just a little will satisfy them in some ways. My ancestors lived through the Great Depression, and I feel they wouldn’t want me to waste food, so this works out for us.
If they tell you to do anything, try your best to do it. It may not seem like much to you, but it could mean a lot to them.
Another tip is to simply connect with them. When you offer them food, say hello. Look at their photos and smile. Offer them live. Remember them, even when you’re away from your altar. I often think about their lives and what they endured, what they loved, and what they accomplished.
Lastly, speak with them and share your thoughts about helping with ancestral wounds. Ask them to speak to you and come to you in your dreams. It may be that an official invitation is necessary.