In honour of this month’s theme of “Embrace Your Shadow”, I am highlighting one of the “badass” ancestors on my father’s side of the family — Stephen Mulherin, a great-granduncle who was one of two of my gaga’s, Gertrude Mulherin’s, uncles. The Mulherin side of the family is a bit — well, uhm — “colourful”, shall we say. Or as my Uncle says: this is the “murderous row” of ancestors.
As a Family Constellations facilitator and someone who is fascinated by ancestral patterns, I have come to understand that the “bad” or “invisible” ancestors are the heart of what lives in our unconscious. The more we reject them in favour of the “shining light” ancestors, the more their presence will show up in one way or another in our lives, actions or outcomes.
Before I go into the pattern and how I feel it connects to me and my life, I will give you some background about Stephen and the Mulherins.
Anyone who knows a bit of Irish immigrant history knows that they had it rough when they came to the States. The “Gangs of New York” movie by Martin Scorcese, which I recently watched, is an enlightening account about the horrific treatment, hate and prejudice that were inflicted against the Irish, especially the Irish Catholics, by the Americans who were born and raised in the U.S. Deep poverty, abuse, wage slavery and being drafted into the military and then sent to die, were all part of the Irish experience.