Systemic Ritual is a different form of constellation work, enriched with elements of shamanic ritual. Systemic Ritual was developed by Daan van Kampenhout. He specialized in shamanism early in his life. In the 90s he came to know the work of Bert Hellinger – the Family Constellations. He was impressed by the depth and healing effect of family constellations.

If you are interested in Systemic Ritual, you can join the online course ‘Working With Systemic Ritual. For more information see: /working-with-systemic-ritual/

The similarities and differences between shamanic rituals and family constellations fascinated him. During many years he has explored many combinations of aspects of constellations and elements of shamanic ritual, and out of these two he gradually developed a new method, now called Systemic Ritual®. Some similarities are:

  • Time plays no role either in a shamanistic ritual or in a constellation. A constellation and ritual take place in space, in the here and now.
  • The healing effect applies to the whole system and not to one individual.
  • The healing effect is not so much based on the individual’s capability, but forces from outside are used – for example, an ancestor.
  • The deaths and the living have a role in family constellations as well as in shamanistic rituals. Both exist in the here and now. The deceased are only in a different ‘dimension’ or ‘world’.
  • We work with ‘healing sentences’, sentences with an archaic power – that speak to the unconscious and bring about a healing effect.
  • Both methods make use of representatives and healing sentences and actions.

The influence of shamanism can be seen in the sound of the drum, the ongoing prayers and the use of ground plans and fixed structures that guide the movement of the ritual.

Differences with family constellations

  • For working with Systemic Ritual, the exact details of a family system are not required.
  • In Systemic Ritual, compared with family constellations, the emphasis is more on the elements that give strength to a person.
  • In Systemic Ritual it can happen that people are asked to represent ‘healers’ or to represent power animals with certain qualities or distant ancestors (ancestors from the fifth, sixth or even 20th generation).
  • In Systemic Ritual we also work with the qualities of the four directions – a concept from shamanism (medicine wheel).
  • Furthermore Systemic Ritual encompasses different concepts. For instance the concept of the human being having many souls. In Systemic Ritual various souls and layers of the soul can be represented.