Issues that we are currently facing in our daily lives may have their origins not in our personal history, but in that of our ancestors. A family constellation gives an opportunity for the source of the issue to be revealed and for it to be resolved within the constellation. This process frees us from being governed by unconscious loyalty to our ancestors, so that we can live our lives to the full.
For example, a constellation could reveal a strong identification with a grandmother whose mother had died in childbirth. This could result in infertility or difficulty giving birth because of unresolved emotions of guilt and fear within the family system. A family constellation helps to reveal the source of the problem and opens the possibility for healing and the release of stuck emotions.
Family constellation therapy was devised by Bert Hellinger who was born in Germany in 1925. He became a missionary to the Zulus during the 1950s and was influenced by their culture and rituals. He later trained in various forms of therapy and psychoanalysis. Family constellations grew out of a synthesis of the various different approaches that he had studied.
Family constellation therapy has continued to evolve and practitioners have adapted it to their own field of interest. Constellations have been used to help businesses become more successful, to find the most appropriate homeopathic remedy for a client and even to find lost objects.