Ritualized Writing With & For Our Ancestors

“The dynamic interaction of energy through the use of work, celebration (in music, song, dance, myth) and placation (sacrifice, offering) was the standard mode of worship for early African peoples”
–Luisah Teish

Since the beginning of time humans have engaged in ritual to consciously collaborate with seen and unseen forces of nature. Rituals color our entire existence and solidify our knowingness of Spirit. Ritual is an intentional patterned movement of energy used to heal, create, and transform. Through ritual we familiarize ourselves with our own internal power to create, move, and replenish energy. Rituals elevate the energetic vibration of one’s internal and external space, creating a sacred invitation for spirit to work its magic. The interaction of energies created by integrating sacred words, thoughts, and symbols with breathing, meditating, dancing, chanting, and visualization allows the power of spirit to mesh seamlessly into our daily lives.

As I navigate the waters of spiritually activated scholarship, it is critical for me to engage with voices of transformation, courage, and liberation that shoulder me in this lifetime. These voices are multi-dimensional, extending beyond the physical realm into the otherworld of Spirit. This divine interaction allows me to be an artist of written communications.

Writing is a form of sacred reverence to my ancestors. I venerate their voices by becoming an open vessel, channeling their energy and wisdom through scholarly writing. In Jambalaya, Luisah Teish speaks of the importance of honoring our ancestors or Egun through ritual, which include food offerings, song and dance, alters, and the maintenance of sacred relationships with those souls that have moved beyond the physical body. Being in right relationship and close proximity to my ancestors allows for unlimited access to a sacred river, one flowing with divine wisdom, guidance, and protection. Therefore, I write with and for my ancestors, offering them my voice and presence through ritual.

Writing Ritual

I: Create a sacred space

Prior to doing any type of creative or academic writing, it is imperative that the writing space is free and clear of stagnant energy. You must also imbue the space with creative life force energy by setting sacred intentions and maintaining a stone grid for the recycling and transmission of energy.

  • Smudge the workspace with sage
  • Light incense for grounding
  • Light a candle for creativity and connection to your ancestors
  • Create an energetic healing stone grid. If one has already been created, draw awareness to the energy emanating from the grid.
  • Pull a card from a Goddess deck to receive direction from Divine Mother • Set your intentions for the writing session

II: Integrate Mind, Body, and Spirit by grounding

Grounding centers the mind, body, and spirit by rooting us into Mother Earth. In addition, it facilitates surrendering to the present moment and power of Now. The higher spirit self is activated through this practice of mindfulness.

  • Sit upright in a chair or cross-legged on the floor
  • Close your eyes
  • Place hands in your lap and face palms upward
  • Take three full deep breaths from the belly
  • Visualize a beautiful bright spiraling light entering your crown chakra located at the top of your head. Follow the light as it descends into the body, illuminating each of the Chakra energy centers. Continue to observe the light as it travels out through the bottom of the feet
  • Follow the light as it descends into Mother Earth making its way to whatever you visualize the core or womb of Mother Earth to be. Stay here a moment. Absorb whatever energy is needed prior to ascending back into the body.
  • Observe the light as it travels up through Mother Earth, entering the body through the bottoms of the feet, and exiting out through the crown chakra.
  • Continue to observe the light as it travels into the sky.

In this moment, you are grounded. Notice your sense of calmness, centeredness, and connection to the heavens, earth, and everything in between.

III. Establish ancestral connection through invocation

Ancestral communication is made through intention and invocation. Teish states that “our purpose is to contact the spirits of ancestors, kindred spirits, in order to get their guidance, protection, and healing so that we may be better able to create a better world.” The intention of this ancestral connection is to create a writer’s circle.

  • Close your eyes
  • Visualize a circle of ancestors and physical realm beings that are here to assist you with your writing
  • Invoke ancestors you know by name that love and support your journey. • Invoke ancestors that are not personally known to you in this lifetime, whose writings, teachings, and wisdom you admire and/or wish to channel. Personally, I always invoke and invite Maya Angelou and Phyllis Wheatley.
  • Invite your chosen ancestors into writers circle
  • Thank them for joining you
  • Upon the close of the writing session, release them with love and gratitude, and thank them again for their presence.

As a petition for writing guidance from my higher self and ancestors, I was gifted this writing ritual. Our mystical, spiritual collective provides us with energy and space for the creative process to be conceived in love, birthed in truth, and nurtured in wisdom.

And now I gift this sacred writing ritual to you.


Kimberly J.

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