Tag Archives: Who do you think you are?

Ancestral Healing Summit, a free online event, April 8-12

My blog subscribers may not know that I work with The Shift Network, as a program host, because I don’t write about work very often. That’s about to change because I want to tell you about our first ever Ancestral Healing Summit, a free online event from April 8th through the 12th. The topic of ancestral healing is so expansive and diverse that it takes a whole five days with over three dozen expert speakers to even begin the discussion and, even then, we’re only scratching the surface.

As many of you do know, I’m obsessed with genealogy and TV shows like Who Do You Think You Are? and Finding Your Roots. I’ve found that both programs show patterns in the chaos that is our family trees, when they demonstrate how their guests’ families frequently display story-lines that repeat over the generations.

While I pondered this phenomenon, and applied this knowledge to assist in figuring out my own family patterns, I was working with Shift Network faculty who would occasionally drop references into conversations about something they were calling ancestral healing. My ears perked up and, eventually, I heard enough of them mention it to bring the topic to the attention of our Summits team and asked if I could put together a summit and interview the experts.

Fortunately for all of us, they said yes! So I got to work and booked as many experts as I could squeeze into a week’s worth of interviews and discovered, as I said above, that we’re only scratching the surface.

In my interviews with the experts, we talk about the hard science of epigenetics which tells how our DNA is actually affected by our ancestors’ experiences, which then got passed down to us in the form of illnesses, phobias, unhealthy social behavior patterns, anxiety, depression and PTSD. I interviewed some of the top experts in the field, like Drs. Dan Siegel and Sue Morter, Dawson Church and Gregg Braden.

I also looked at the psychological aspects of how our ancestors affect us with Mark Wolynn, head of the Family Constellations Institute and Director of The Inherited Trauma Institute. I also talked with Sangoma healer Gogo Ekhaya Esima, who specializes in exploring the connection between what may appear as mental or physical illness but is actually unaddressed ancestral calling.

In addition, I explored Ancestral Healing from a shamanic perspective, with shamanists like Sandra Ingerman, Hank Wesselman, don Oscar Miro-Quesada and, of course, Daniel Foor – a renowned expert in Ancestral Healing work. They, and many others, offer powerful insights into how you can explore communication with your ancestors and work with them to create more satisfying and healthy lives for you, your family and your descendants.

And, because ancestral history is something we all have in common, I looked for a global perspective, and made the effort to connect with experts with backgrounds in some of humankind’s most destructive historical events like the African diaspora, the Holocaust, the displacement of indigenous peoples, Japanese internment camps, and the oppression of the LGBTQ community.

I had a fascinating conversation about how past lives enter into the equation, with Dr. Linda Backman and how karma plays a role, with Raja Choudhury. I talked to Heather Dane about her work with ‘generational pattern shifters’, and Dr. David Kowalewski and his work as a psychopomp, assisting deceased souls to a peaceful state in the afterlife.

I also interviewed Natalia O’Sullivan, a psychic medium who specializes in ancestral healing work, and Desda Zuckerman, an expert in working with the energy field in clearing up stuck ancestral patterns. In numerous conversations, we even addressed how adoptees, who may have no idea who their ancestors are, can absolutely participate in this work.

Each and every expert I talked with offers incredible insights and wisdom and there are far too many to name here. Please take a look at the lineup and make a point of listening in to as many as you can. These conversations will change the way you look at your life, the lives of those who came before you and those who are yet to come.

It’s free to watch them online for 48 hours after they air, and the only cost is if you choose to buy the upgrade package, with all of the bonuses and lifetime access to the recordings. Check it out. It’s fascinating stuff!

Also, here’s you a dog, wearing a family tree-shirt:

Lisa Bonnice is an award-winning, best-selling author. Her current passion-project is a series of metaphysical comedy novels. The first is entitled The Poppet Master (previously published as Be Careful What You Witch For!, now revamped and with a new ending). The Poppet Master is a modern-day fairy tale about Lola Garnett, a bored housewife and office drone who wakes up with unexpected psychic abilities, and no instruction manual, and Twink, the reluctant, sarcastic faery assigned to assist and educate her. The Poppet Master will be available in summer 2019. Its sequel is in the works.

Lisa is also writing The Maxwell Curse, a fictionalized version of a story she found in her own ancestral lineage about a witch trial, a generational curse, and massive mine explosion, all of which left ripples of destruction in their wake, devastating one family’s tree.


The voyage to meet my ancestors begins …

On November 8, 1921, my great-grandfather William Garroch—along with his brother Peter, his 16-year-old son (my grandfather, William Jr.) and his nephew Thomas—crossed the Atlantic Ocean, from Glasgow to New York City. They traveled on an ocean liner called Cameronia, in second-class cabins.

On January 20, 1922, my great-grandmother Helen—along with their three daughters—followed on a ship called Lapland, also second-class. Helen had $200 cash, in pocket.

After passing through Ellis Island, they traveled by train to Castle Gate, Utah, where Helen’s brother, William Littlejohn, was the superintendent of the Castle Gate coal mine, owned by the Utah Fuel Company. He had arranged jobs for numerous family members, and many of them traveled from Scotland, where the life of a coal miner was much, much more difficult.

Both oceanic voyages took 11 days, and I don’t know how long it took them to get from NYC to Castle Gate. Tomorrow I will travel to Castle Gate with my daughter, from Phoenix, Arizona, a nine-hour drive.

I’ll keep their discomfort in mind if I begin to feel restless about sitting in a car for such a ‘long time’. My daughter’s car is a comfy ride, and we’ll have a cooler packed full of fresh, healthy Trader Joe foods. In comparison, I have nothing to complain about.

Once we’re there, we’ll be touring the site where the town of Castle Gate used to be. It no longer exists. The only thing left is the cemetery where William, Helen, Peter and Thomas are buried, and the opening to Mine #2, the mineshaft in which all three men were killed during the Castle Gate Mine Explosion on March 8, 1924.

We’ll also be visiting the Western Mining and Railroad Museum to view pictures of the town and the people from back then, and chat with the curators there.

I’ll be posting here and on Facebook, live, during the trip so if you’re as interested in genealogy as I am, follow along! I think you’ll find it fascinating.

Who do I think I am?

A genealogy FANATIC, that’s who!

I’ve been into ancestry research for many years, long before the TV show Who Do You Think You Are? began airing. It has since become one of my favorite programs. How about you? Isn’t it a great show?

When I first signed up with Ancestry.com in 2008, I knew very little about my grandparents, and nothing about anyone beyond them in my family tree. After extensive digging (and some mild obsessing) my first big success came when I discovered a long-lost second-cousin from my paternal grandfather’s side of the family who coincidentally lived a couple of miles from my brother.

I was hooked!

Since then, I have connected with family from all over the world, some of whom happen to look just like me. My dad had 10 first-cousins we never knew about, so I am now enjoying a whole passel of second-cousins.

Next, it was time to dig into my mom’s side of the family.

I wasn’t making much progress until one day I got a message in my Ancestry.com inbox from the husband of my third-cousin (who, up until then, I didn’t know existed), telling me that some of my Scottish ancestors had died in a famous Utah mine explosion.

Over the years, since I first learned of this story, I’ve managed to dig up an impressive amount of information about these people about their lives, and their deaths.

William and Helen, my great-grandparents whose names I didn’t previously know emigrated from Scotland in 1922 with their four kids: Jeannie, Willie (my eventual grandfather), Nellie and Isabella.

Before then, William worked in the coalmines in Scotland, where life was desperately hard. Helen’s brother was a big wig at the coalmine in Castle Gate, Utah and he arranged jobs for his family members. Several of his siblings journeyed across the Pond on ocean liners, with their families, to seek their fortunes.

Only a year later, Helen died of cancer at age 39 leaving Jeannie, who was 19 at the time, to mother her siblings. Six months later William, his brother Peter and their cousin Thomas were all killed in a massive mine explosion that took the lives of 172 men. William and Helen’s kids were now orphaned, strangers in a strange land.

Through my research, I discovered that William and Helen’s kids spent a large sum of money ($2,000 in today’s currency) for their headstone. That tells me that they cared a great deal for their parents — after William was killed, the kids had to fend for themselves. To put themselves in debt like that … well …

I’ve seen this photo of Helen and William’s headstone online, because someone else posted the pic on the FindAGrave website. Next week I’m traveling to Castle Gate to visit their graves for the first time.

It will be my honor to pay my respects to these people, the great-grandparents I never knew — and never would have known, if not for Ancestry.com.

lisa author shotLisa Bonnice is an award-winning, best-selling author. Her current passion-project is a series of metaphysical comedy novels. The first in the series is Be Careful What You Witch For!, a modern-day fairy tale about Lola Garnett, a bored housewife and office drone who wakes up with unexpected psychic abilities, and no instruction manual, and Twink, the reluctant, sarcastic faery assigned to assist and educate her. Its sequel, Patterns in the Chaos, is in the works.