Why We Honor The Ancestors

Why We Honor the Ancestors

By Gogo Thule Ngane

Guest writer for Wake Up World

I think many people look at earth-based spirituality as worshiping the outside world; something outside of yourself. Spirit has shown me it’s about honoring, remembering, celebrating an aspect of myself, wisdom that is being passed on to me and that I feel called to reclaim.

Whether we hear it or not, the ancestors still speak to us from where they are, in our dreams and in the coincidences of our daily life. They have wisdom to pass on to us spiritually. We are the ancestors, and they are us. There is a lot of power on your side.

Listen, they will speak.

We honor the ancestors because we are connected…

Whether we acknowledge it or not there are ones that came before us, ones that opened the way for you to be here, ones who prayed for you before they knew you, and worked for your future.

Whether we are in tune or not, they walk among us in the spirit realm. We stand on their shoulders. They are still in our blood, in our bones, and when they heal, we are uplifted.

As Edison Agbandje, author of Ancestral Essence says, “Our ancestors hear our prayers first.”

When most hear the word ancestors, they instantly connect to their blood relatives that they may or may not of known. In indigenous traditions this word is more fluid. We have the ancestors and spiritual beings of the waters, the air, the fire, the earth, the blood ancestors of your father and mother’s lineages, elevated ancestors and the adopted ancestors or guardians who have chosen to work with you in past and present life times which come in the form of gods, goddesses, angels, spirit animals, and more.

The reason that certain animal totems and/or gods guide you is because you come from a lineage of people who worked with those energies and lifetimes of agreements to work together. We not only come into this world with physical parents and relatives but also guardians connected to our lineage, helping spirits, a powerful and huge spiritual court.

In my tradition, that of the Sangomas of South Africa, the Ancestors are the center of our work because they connect us to the rest of the spirit realm.

We honor the ancestors because what we need to heal started long before us…

They say that when we do our own inner personal healing, we heal 7 generations forward and 7 generations back. The memories, the power, traumas, pains, and wisdom of our ancestors are currently running through our blood/DNA and thus stored in our energetic/physical body.

Some of us are dealing with sadness and depression, imbalances, illnesses, phobias/mental issues, and life patterns that  are connected to what our ancestors went through as well as experiences that are signs of ancestral messages. I once assisted in spiritual work with a young girl who was very sad and fussy in a way that began to concern her mother. We did an ancestral reading to find out there was a male ancestor who was having some kind of trouble that was being expressed through this young girl.

Many of us are going through life having experiences and challenges that our modern day environment can’t explain. Some are seeing, hearing, and sensing things that they can’t piece together because we no longer know how to interpret and recognize the signs and language of the ancestors nor the spirit world. Then there are those, like me, who simply felt that something in my life was missing and felt disconnected.

The fact is to ignore the ancestors is to ignore a part and aspect of yourself. It’s like to have 2 hands but not use one of them, to not nurture it, as well as to not tap into a place of power within you that we all have.

Because there is wisdom to reclaim that vibrates within us…

They walk with us every day, they see your struggles, they can see what’s in your way and constantly protect and lend us their wisdom through intuition, synchronizes, and life experiences. They are able to see what we can’t and guide us back to our higher-selves.

I am honestly fascinated and in awe of how much wisdom we walk with. As a shamanic medicine woman, I’ve been called to work with my elevated ancestors who were healers in ancient times. I once had a vision where my ancestors appeared as lions. I know this because at some point they picked up some chalk and drew their human faces on a board. I was scared initially and ran into the house when I saw them. They followed and eventually I realized they were here to guide me. First one of the lions had a wound on his shoulder. This ancestor lifted my hand up to the wound and it was healed. Then they took me to a window and showed me how to physically and spiritually float up and through the window and fly up into the sky.

This vision and many of my experiences on this journey with clients and myself has showed me how connected we are to them, how much they already have mastered and how we possess this wisdom if we make the connection, choose not to be afraid, and honor their ancient practices.

Also by Gogo Thule:

About the author:

Gogo Thule Ngane is a Sangoma Traditional Healer, Priestess, and Medicine Woman. She is guided by the Amadlozi, Elevated Ancestors of her lineage. Her work includes divination, traditional healing, and  leads workshops, ceremonies, and retreats on ancient African healing and spirituality. She is devoted to awakening ancestral wisdom on the earth.

Journey with her at: 

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