A Tarot Spread for Healing Ancestral Trauma

A Tarot Spread for Healing Ancestral Trauma

Working my way through Black and the Moon's #batmsamhainchallenge I noticed a prompt for healing ancestral trauma. I've been doing a lot of ancestor work the last few years and healing ancestral trauma has been a big focus for me. I'm nowhere near done and I'm not sure I'll finish the work in this lifetime, but I'm committed to doing what I can.

I developed this spread to help me focus (and avoid overwhelm). My grandparents had plenty of trauma... they all lived through the Great Depression. Both my grandfathers fought in World War II. Newell drove liberation trucks out of Dachau and suffered massive PTSD... he'd already had a traumatic childhood, losing a sister when he was young and getting put up for adoption as a boy because neither parent wanted him (His father was an alcoholic who came home from World War I with his own baggage). Fran was orphaned at 8 years old, Norma's dad died when she was 5... the more ancestors you look at, the more wars, deaths, depressions, miscarriages, unhappy marriages, betrayals, losses and pain you uncover.

So I don't dissolve in a big puddle of pain and panic when I work on ancestral trauma, I like to use readings for conversations with specific ancestors.... I'll light a candle, make an offering for Apphia or Caroline or Newell or whoever I'm working with, and invite them to tell me what hurt needs some love. Here's the spread I use: 

Aside: The headstone photo in the background is from the Vine Lake Cemetery in Medfield, MA... I visited in April 2009 to do some research on the Hammond/Hamant branch of my family tree and took this photo, even though Sarah seems not to have been a direct ancestor and the Hamant stones I was looking for were a bit older. A broken headstone seemed like the perfect visual metaphor for ancestral trauma.

If you decide to work with this spread, I'd love to know what you think. Please tag me in photos of your readings. Thanks so much. ⁠

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