A constellation is a format for working with transgenerational energies that show up in our lives as illness, depression, financial struggles, relationship issues, lack of motivation, addictions, etc.
Volunteers are used to represent members of a person’s family, or aspects of their experience.
Bert Hellinger, who developed this work, based on Virginia Satir’s work with families, describes setting up a constellation this way: “So, to explain a constellation just a little, all people carry with them an energetic field or blueprint of their biological families—this field has been called by some a family soul, or family conscience. That field has an enormous unconscious effect on each family members life and all the people they interact with. Long standing problems with health, depression, relationships, failed finances, etc. are usually a result of unconscious ‘entanglements’ in the family soul. Doing a constellation is a way to bring those entanglements to light, and to allow for some resolution to happen. Quite often after a constellation, other members of the family who were not present for the constellation—and didn’t even know it was happening–report dramatic shifts as a result. Because the family is a system—like an energetic mobile, what affects one, affects all. And what keeps one stuck, affects them all…
“A client selects from a group representatives for members of his family and puts them in relationship to one another. If he has set them up, he may be very much surprised of what he suddenly sees. In the first picture something hidden is usually shown already. For instance, we may see that some of the members want to leave the family. And we see, when they are set up, the representatives feel like the people they represent without knowing them. So, they know about the people they don’t know. That shows something about the human condition. We are not just on our own, we are connected with many others in a very mysterious way. What also comes to light in family constellations is that in the end all in the family are equal. Nobody is better, nobody is worse. So at the end, we can be very humble and take our place in our family, and by taking our right place in the family, we feel good and free.”
Sometimes constellations are done in a blind format, where the representatives being set up do not know who or what they are representing. The family dynamics and unconscious entanglements begin to show up quite clearly as a general rule. Then these unconscious dynamics and entanglements can be brought to light and acknowledged. After this acknowledgment it is sometimes possible to allow for a healing resolution to come about, allowing the client to be free of the block or limitation.
It is not uncommon for the people volunteering to be representatives or watching the constellation to also receive shifts and insights into their own family systems as well.
What's the difference between doing an NLP session and a Family Constellation?
The difference between an NLP session and a constellation is the level that they work on, as well as the issues that they address.
NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) works a lot with belief and identity subconscious patterns, often created in the first 6 or so years of life, as well as patterns that get created through trauma experienced directly.
Revealing and revising those patterns can change things at a neurological level, and can create permanent change-almost as though you are re-writing your internal software.
Constellation work addresses generational traumas and patterns that children often feel when they come into a family, and that they often take on to try to heal or carry for their families of origin (biological). These patterns are not originally stored in the neurology because they are not events that the child experienced directly, but are running in the family collective unconsciousness outside of time and space. Often, however, they eventually get stored neurologically as well, due to repeated associations of the pain/struggle/dynamic in the child's life as they grow.
So a constellation operates more outside of time and space, and may affect the wiring as well, but not necessarily.
When we do an NLP session we are working with both the subconscious patterns stored in the neurology, but also paying attention to the family systems dynamics running outside of time and space and addressing those too.
A constellation is a more visceral experience and involves a lot of volunteers who offer to represent issues or members of the client's family to reveal the agreements/entanglements that someone may be trying to heal or carry for their family of origin. They are more difficult to schedule because they require so many people and so much coordination.
An NLP session, although not always as dramatic, can address both the subconscious beliefs/patterns/wiring, as well as revealing family entanglements and agreements, and are much easier to schedule because we don't need to assemble an entire group to do the work.
In an NLP session we are always paying attention to and addressing both the subconscious patterning/beliefs held in the neurology, and the family system patterning.
In a constellation we are only addressing the generational/family system entanglements.
Due to the increasing demands of our teaching schedule private constellations are not always available. However, there are many of our graduates that we can refer you to. For a referral, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
We will try to get back to you as soon as possible, but due to our busy training schedule it may not always be possible to respond within 24 hours.