There is a tendency for the majority of professionals in regression therapy to overlook the importance of the association between revealed and relived experiences and real events. There are two major reasons for this. First, pioneers of our profession argue that what is essential and vital for our clients, is to achieve emotional relief and catharsis and to alleviate the presenting problem. If this goal is accomplished it should be of no interest to the therapist whether the client is imagining things or truly reliving a past life experience. Second, there are difficulties associated with the verification of the reviewed experiences compared to those of historical reality. How can one trace down events if the story is rooted far in the past when no proper records were kept? Also, we all know that most of our clients reveal emotional material, not names, dates, or historical details. This argumentation is sound and reasonable, and by leaving verification aside, the therapist is thus dispensed from credibility concerns and this makes his work easier.
However, a further issue complicates things a little more: our clients’ personal view about their regressions. We all know that our clients have doubt about their own experiences. They question themselves about the reality of what they see or feel. The idea of reincarnation is foreign to them. They were never taught about it. “Is this all in my mind?”, or “did I make all this up?” are prevailing thoughts, especially for those who have two or three regressions (the average number of sessions for our clients). The natural tendency of an inquisitive human mind is to doubt the reality of these experiences (even for believers in reincarnation). Now when we, as therapists, are posing the question “…why did your imagination make up such a horrible story where you were a slave with a degraded life; you were condemned as a witch by the inquisition, and burned at the stake?” The answer is usually “hmm”… “Hmm” may be interpreted in a number of ways, but it seems to me that it symbolizes a wondering puzzlement. How could one validate a story without names, dates and places? Is there a way out of this? For me there is. But let me first share with you a few cases before I expand theoretically.
Four years ago a forty-one year old mother of two, came in for therapy for weight reduction. However, during the intake procedure other problems surfaced such as allergies, migraines, depression, intense stress, cervical syndrome, significant loss of hearing, etc. Artemis also had a very tense and imbalanced relationship with her brutal and authoritative father. This is by far not a typical case in which I would proceed by inducing trance to my client, in order to read out the scripts for the loss of weight hoping to produce changes to their behavior. That style for me at least does not work. Instead, upon discussion we agreed that we should rather try to focus on the root of the problem. In the healing process I discovered attached entities, which I released, and when we came to genuine regressions, a lot of tension was resolved. Simultaneously, Artemis achieved a significant loss of weight over two months.
When her sister Dionne saw her sibling’s improvement, she decided to try hypnotherapy as well since she was similarly overweight. Thirty-eight years old, unemployed for more than eight years, and with one daughter, she had insomnia, headaches, nightmares, allergies, phobias, gastritis, a lack of “psychological balance”, and smoked and drank heavily. Upon probing I found two invading spirits George, a young man who died of tuberculosis, and after he was released a very old lady, disabled and in utter terror, who died of hunger all alone. She was one of the most difficult cases I have had up to that point to extract. After a few more sessions, another ‘hot potato’ came up. That is, her stormy relationship with her abusive father. The session transcribed as follows:
In the first regression, Dionne, at a younger age, is in her bedroom where her father is harassing her. He grabs her by her skirt and abuses her. She cries a lot and then I ask her to ‘go back to the time it all started’. She then finds herself as a young woman in a British port (she said Southampton) where she is to be married with a brutal, selfish sailor. All this man wants is her family’s money. He could not care less about her. Her fiancée demands something from her. She does not obey him, then he attacks her but she manages to escape out of the house and runs towards the port. He is chasing her. He throws her in the choppy sea. She does not know how to swim, but she drags herself via some rocks back to the dock. He beats her again. Then he lets her there and goes after her mother. After locating her, he sexually assaults her by raping and beating her violently. Then he returns back to his fiancée and in the midst of the quay he stabs her with a knife till she is dead. Her psyche is dissociated and views the scene from above. She can also see what happens after she is dead. She can see that she is over a cemetery and senses that not only her body, but her mother’s as well have been buried there.
In the life between lives stage I let her assess her life and then we are trying to see what she has planned for her current life. Her assigned task is to forgive this man who killed her then and now is her father.
I found the next experience to be even more interesting. Immediately after Dionne’s session ended her sister arrived. Artemis had the following appointment. They just said hello to each other and I proceeded with Artemis’s session. It should be clear that there was no way that Dionne could have communicated the above experience to Artemis in their brief encounter in my presence. So it was time to work with Artemis, the elder sister. As soon as I hypnotized her I asked her to “go to a specific event that is directly relevant to the problematic nature of her relationship with her father”.
In a past life she finds herself looking at two women from a third person perspective. She identifies herself as the eldest of the two. She is not in Corfu where she currently lives. It seems to her that it could be England. She sees that she is not happy and worries about many things. Their clothes are old and odd. The younger woman is her daughter. Her eyes remind her of somebody but she is not sure whom. Her daughter is very slim and beautiful. Somebody, a man, has hit her and she is very sad. He is not a good man and he hits her all the time. The mother advises her to leave him and go away. She cannot tell if this man reminds her of someone in this life. After some time the mother cries in horror “I lost my child”. Some people are gathered around her body, she must be senseless at the port’s jetty. “My daughter is dead!”, she cries in agony. She does not want to face it, or believe it. I asked her to move to the moment of her own death. She finds herself to be calm.
I asked her to regress back to the way she died. “I’m glad that he killed me” she said. I then asked her: “who killed you?” He was a younger man than her. He was her daughter’s fiancé. “Do you know this person in this life, have you ever met him?” I asked. She had a hard time accepting the fact that her current father is the same person as that murderer. Upon asking her who was her daughter of that time she realized that it was her younger sister Dionne. At that life between lives stage they decided to be together in this life. Upon asking her, “why is the man, who killed both of you, your father in this life?” the answer was: “I do not blame him; I only want him to leave us alone and stop messing our lives”. She also added that she wanted to be with her child (sister) and stick together. Then she found herself in the light. Someone in the light will lead them to their choices. In the next scene she found herself at the elementary school with her sister/daughter. She cried deeply when she exclaimed that her father never wanted her to be friends with her sister. He thought that everyone was against him.
These regressions and subsequent realizations brought forth radical behavioral changes for both sisters. The young one decided to abandon her lazy lifestyle and find work after eight years of unemployment. She moved out of her father’s house where she had been living, playing the role of his housemaid. She lost a lot of weight, quit drinking alcohol and decided to start her life from scratch.
Changes for her older sister were not as radical. She indeed had improvements in her life, but not as spectacular. But that is not our point here. We will come back to it later…
Another case with two sisters, one aged twenty-three and the other nineteen. Upon regressing the youngest sister (a sophomore student at the University of Athens) who came for regression for personal development rather than any other pathological reason, she finds herself living on an island in Greece, but she cannot name it. She lives in the town close to the port and her life is quite smooth and comfortable without responsibilities and burdens. Her parents are both alive. As a teenager she falls in love with a young man, who is very handsome and they start flirting. The young man works for the grocery store at the port when one day he asks her to marry him. So everything is arranged for the wedding. Danae moves forward to midday on her wedding day. All the female relatives work feverishly to prepare the banquet and place all the goodies in the public square, as is the tradition in many Greek villages. But bad news arrived. The bride’s father had taken his small boat out for fishing early in the morning. But what a fortune did he have? Fishermen found his boat floating ungoverned in the open sea. They rushed there and found him dead, most probably of a heart attack. The bad news hit everybody like lightning. Silence ensued. Danae (not her real name) is devastated…
The next scene that appears is Danae with her fiancé walking on one of the island’s beaches a few days later. They see a woman’s body floating in the water. She had drowned. For a moment Danae thought that this lady could have been her mother, but the corpse was too young and slim, and was a beautiful brunette just older than herself. At this point Danae asked me to terminate the session and bring her back to full consciousness.
After that our young lady, Danae, during the hypnagogic state at her home, had visions of this wet dead woman being very upset- almost mad- at her, but she could not hear what she was saying. It was as if someone was blocking the sound of the narrative. She communicated with me and told me about those recurring and sometimes frightening visions, so I asked her to come in once again and as I induced trance I asked her to bring that vision to her visual field. She found herself at exactly the same haunting frame, without sound again. I asked her to talk to this troubled woman, but there was still no sound even though the woman was talking. I deepened the trance and as a result Danae was capable to listen to this entrapped persona. This woman was upset because she “did not receive what she deserved” and she “is mad at her own father who deserted her”. As I continued the dialogue with that persona I tried to relieve her from her tension and to release her emotional burden. We tried to make her understand that she cannot be trapped within her anger because in that way she would not be in a position to evolve. After a long and exhausting conversation, the trapped persona, realized her position and thus she shifted her attitude, which eventually liberated her. Her release was concluded when she thanked us for making her understand. But who was this woman? What was this persona from the past demanding from Danae? Was there a relationship between them?
The answers came in slowly. The woman who committed suicide used to be protected by Danae’s father also. For some reason, her father was giving money and supporting the drowned woman, but Danae could not recall why. However, she could recall that that woman was somehow isolated, living alone in a mansion on the outskirts of town. Villagers looked at her scornfully. She had no friends. Danae could not tell me though why this happened though. At the drowned woman’s funeral only a handful of people gathered. Even the priest of the town did not appear to conduct the funeral and bless the dead woman, since the incident was considered a suicide. What a sad story for a young woman of 25 years of age! Had Danae met this woman in this life? She could not tell. No matter how hard I tried she could not tell… When the session was over and since I was regressing the whole family I explicitly asked her not to disclose any part of the session to any member of her family. I illustrated to her the importance of letting the process reveal itself in its own time.
I could not find anything until her sister Leto (Leto is a fictional name from Greek mythology like Danae) came in for regression. She was very different from her younger sister. Even though she is a beauty, she has some problems that are causing trouble in her life. She is slightly maladaptive, insecure, and with a high temperament and unstable in relationships. She gets easily bored and sometimes turns into herself. Even during regressions she sometimes becomes rather aggressive towards me. Anyway, this time I asked her to tune in to what her “soul is ready to witness as of today”.
She sees herself on a cliff contemplating throwing herself off. She leapt off the cliff into the sea below. Why? Her father, her only support in her miserable life had just died in his little boat in the middle of the sea. There was a feast going to take place in the town, but she was not invited. But her father’s death stopped everything. I asked her to tune in even better with each breath she took. She saw herself as a young girl, playing on the beach with another even younger girl. She was like a sister to her, but not quite. When I asked her what she meant she was not able to answer. I asked her to describe her mother. After a while she starts crying that she doesn’t have a mother. She lost her when she was five. Her father married again and the girl she is playing with is her half-sister. I asked her to tell me anything significant that happens next. She finds herself, feeling embarrassed. She is about sixteen years old and pregnant. Her lover is traveling in a ship as a captain. But they are not married. Disgraced and isolated by her relatives and the other villagers, she miscarries her child. Her lover comes back after a few months to discover what she had been through all this time. He tries to change people’s attitude by marrying her, but to no avail. No one in the village but her father and her half-sister come to the wedding. She has been stigmatized as if she had committed the worst of all sins. When her husband traveled, she was all alone in the village. But then bad fortune struck again. Her husband came back from his voyage with tuberculosis. No long after that, he died. How many losses could a person withstand? She committed suicide when her father, her last piece of security and support died of a heart attack in his little boat. Leto did not see much in the afterlife, and came out of trance sad and a little disoriented.
The next day I asked both sisters to come to my office and asked them if it was okay to talk openly about their sessions. They were literally astonished and overwhelmed by the strength of the experience. Now they have no doubt whatsoever of the reality of reincarnation even though they could care less about it. They said that with a little luck, they might find the island of the Aegean Sea in which they lived in their past lives. They only want to do that to confirm and validate the story even more and make it stronger. A lot of things have changed since that time, which we cannot date but it seems to be somewhere in the twentieth century either in the thirties or in early fifties.
This case study concerns a mother and her daughter this time, acquaintances of mine. The mother had her first regression about six years ago when she was forty-three. She found herself as a young girl of seven living in mountain village in rural Greece. She goes to school, but is not as attentive as other children. She can get out of class anytime she wants, because she is sick. Her father is very loving to her even though he has an air of sadness about him, but not her ‘mother’ who is looking after her younger brothers and sisters. The young girl’s name as she can recall is Ariadne, and she became really sick and was put on a horse in order to be carried to the city hospital, which is miles away, but she never makes it. She died on the road from tuberculosis. In her current life she had always looked pale as if she were sick. The remigrant could not understand why her ‘mother’ was not as worried as her father until she was further regressed. Ariadne found herself at an even younger age of about two or less when she was forcefully taken from her natural mother and given over to the other ‘mother’. Afterwards, she forgot about the incident and thought that her mother was the blonde lady. But, what was wrong with her natural mother? She lived alone in a house outside the village, but she behaved as if she was depressed, or mentally ill. She was young, slim and attractive but was always troubled and sad. She would sneak every now and then and bring to Ariadne nuts, fruits and other treats. Ariadne would look at her with sympathy, but was not consciously aware that she was her natural mother.
After her death Ariadne remained earthbound for a while and saw her funeral. Her natural mother approached the grave, but her father’s workers threw stones at her to keep her away. Their lord who is Ariadne’s father stopped them and let her approach the grave. They all left the cemetery except her. Ariadne is sad for her and she cannot move on to the other spheres of existence because her mother drags her down with her immense pain. She is emotionally stuck. Ariadne wrongly believed that she could help her mother by staying around for a while but she did not succeed on this.
About a year later I hypnotized the nineteen years old daughter. She wanted to know why she had such a passion for classical ballet. In the beginning I had some trouble to get imagery initiated but she soon found herself as a young girl aged seven or eight years within a wooden box. The box was actually the house where she lived and she was hiding there. She belonged to a kids’ gang and they lived by stealing. It seems to be the beginning of the twentieth century, and situated in a city in today’s Bulgaria. The kids went to a shop; some of them started fussing around diverting the attention of the shopkeeper while others took advantage of the situation and stole food to eat. But what has all that to do with ballet? She found herself much younger at the age of three when she was wearing a gorgeous dress and was being taken by her beautiful mother to the theatre-ballet. She loved the costumes, the good looking people, the decoration of the theatre and above all the play. She was in deep ecstasy overwhelmed by the beauty that surrounded her.
When we moved to the next significant event, she saw her beautiful two-storey mansion burned to the ground. We do not know what caused this tragedy but from here on she would never see her parents again. It is probably after this tragic loss that she was ‘adopted’ by the gang.
Moving to the next scene she found herself in prison. She had been arrested by the police along with her step-parents. We do not know why they are all imprisoned. Balkan countries were in a constant turmoil and wars at the turn of the 20th century. What we know is that the particular childless couple adopted her off the streets. They kept her as a maid and housekeeper, rather than a daughter with rights. When her stepmother was out of the house, her husband would rape the young girl. Next thing we know is that a young officer walks into the prison and releases her. He takes her with him to Greece but it was somewhere here that this session came to an end.
It was more than a year until another session took place with her. She came in to me extremely upset following a big fight with her mother. After hypnotizing her I asked her “to move to a significant event that would be illuminating as far as their stormy relationship is concerned”. She found herself in a cemetery. She had lost her seven years old child. She was lying over the grave but also saw her daughter next to her (an apparition that is). Hearing this, I could feel the hair tingle all over my body. I was literally chilled to the bone. It was the first time that I was personally witnessing a cross-verification. She is full of sorrow, grief and despair. She can’t get away from her feelings. Her heart is torn apart. I try to regress her further back to see what happened. When the officer brought her back to Greece, a landlord of the area recognized her beauty and fell in love with her. She was still in her teens. With no hesitation he turned her into his mistress and offered her a house where she would be living on her own at the outskirts of the village. The next thing we know is that she is in her house and very upset. I asked her why she is upset. She said that there is a feast at the village. I asked her what for. She was still very upset. I asked her to tell me why. She said that “he” is getting married. “Who is getting married?” “The landlord”, she said (her lover that is).
At least she had a little young daughter by him and devoted her time to her. But even that would not last for long. The young officer, whom she admired so much, and who in a way saved her life from prison, walks into her house and takes her baby away. She cried, she gasped, she suffocated but he did not change his mind. He took the child away, and gave it to the landlord’s wife to raise.
I want to add that the mother in this case study discovered by chance or synchronicity the particular village and located with accuracy where the school was at that time, her house, as well as the cemetery where she was buried (both the school and the cemetery have changed place since then). Also, there was a big sanatorium at the outskirts of the village, an indicator of the fact that a lot of carriers of TB were brought there to extend their life expectancy. Furthermore, she described with accuracy the physical surroundings and named the village correctly. She also named correctly the name of the Church of the village and its location. It would be interesting if she goes to the village again with her daughter…
What is the common denominator of all these case studies? If one chooses to say that in all three stories someone died of tuberculosis then I did not make my case clear.
Someone could also say that all these stories were very moving, dramatic almost tragic. That is certainly true, but is this the reason that I wrote this article? What is our common denominator then? In all the cases I mentioned there were no names of people, dates or places available, to us with the exception of the third case. Historical facts were so vague that an interested researcher would have difficulty discovering the truth of what was revealed. However, it is more than clear that the stories were cross-verified by the participants. The main players (re-)lived the scenes from their own perspective, but by doing so they validated the testimonies of their counterparts. There is both coherence and consistency in the stories revealed. This is more than spectacular, it is life changing for those who witness and share such an experience.
What is happening here? Are we (as regression therapists) witnesses of stories, deeply embedded in the past, coming forth as haunting tales? Do these memories have power over us? Do they shape our present, or our future? For those who have undergone such experiences, automatically there is a shift in the frame of reference, which was upheld until this moment. Old values are overthrown. Now, new dimensions are introduced, new parameters are added. In my office, hundreds of stories are spread in front of me by wonderful, everyday people who give their battles for survival and many of them are cross-verified in the manner just displayed. This is consistent with the hypothesis that we have been here before with the people who play crucial and nourishing roles in our lives. These people who are important in our lives have been around us before in changing roles and we all work to one end. To further develop, enhance and enrich our experiential deposits, to work on our karma and dharma.
I can list other cases of cross-verification. However, there have been other authors that have come to the same conclusions as I have. Since this keeps on happening, I cannot go on pretending that this may be a fallacy, because it does not fit with the current prevalent paradigm. Nor do I accept the logic of some of the pioneers of our profession that we should disregard the historical validity part of our clients’ experiences. We are part of the process and we are not isolated in some laboratory, examining events as detached observers. No matter how objective some wish to be, they have a stance in life, a set of values and postulates, and those shape them. So let us start calling things by their name and not pretend that we simply relieve people of their symptoms.
I am grateful to Louis Siron, Janet Gunningham and Belinda Tanner for the time and effort they took in editing my clumsy English.
Here one could ask me why did I not work over the rape incident and why did I not release the tension there? I thought that since she already had witnessed the experience in the light I should let it dissolve by its own and if there was an emotional residue I would work with it another time. However, the other time never occurred.
Not an easy task to do in Greece. There are hundreds of islands. She currently lives in Corfu in the Ionian Sea, which is in the western part of Greece adjacent to Italy. She can locate with relevant certainty that the island she is talking about lays in the Aegean Sea, which is in the eastern part of Greece towards Turkey.