Attitudes vary about metaphysics from new 'revelations' by self-proclaimed seers and prophets, to resurrecting ancient religious or philosophic ideas and practices. For many, anything ancient must be Truth. For example, Wicca, according to Wikepedia* has a annual growth rate of 143%. This makes it one of the fastest growing religions (or philosophies) in the world today.
Huna, another ancient practice, has its roots in the Pacific islands. It is steadily growing in popularity. Adherents believe it dates back some 35,000 years and was started by a race of people no longer in existence on Earth.
Other, non-religious practices are also gaining ground and becoming more mainstream than ever before in the modern world. Astrology, numerology, I Ching, Tarot, and such are examples.
With all of this and the myriad of other metaphysical practices and ancient religions popular today, there is one common theme in most of them, a belief in reincarnation. Although the beliefs about how reincarnation works can vary widely, it is a thread that runs through nearly all of them as a belief that the soul migrates, after death from one body to another.
Karma is a common theme in reincarnation belief. Karma is the law of cause and effect, the universal plan by which a soul is created and sent to the physical world to live, die, and live again and again. With each life, the soul betters itself, coming closer and closer to perfection. The soul is then given a choice of joining the cosmic consciousness collective or remaining in the spirit or physical world to help others.
The pinnacle of perfection is reached by learning to operate more out of soul consciousness than body and brain consciousness. Each step along the way brings more cosmic clarity until there is total awareness of the true, immortal, spiritual self.
In the world, belief in reincarnation is widespread. Only a few religions and philosophies discount it, including the vast majority of Christian faiths. That is not to say that all Christians who believe in the divinity of Jesus Christ deny reincarnation. Many believe that Christ himself preached karma.
There are many passages in the Holy Bible that could be interpreted as teaching about reincarnation, for example:
Verily I say unto thee, except a man be born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God. John, 3:3
But I say unto you that Elias is come already and they knew him not. Then the disciples understood that he spake unto them of John the Baptist. Matthew 17:12-13
He that leadeth into captivity shall go into captivity: he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints. Revelations 13:10
For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John. And if ye will receive it, this is Elias, which was for to come. (speaking of John the Baptist) Matthew 11:13-14
There are many more passages that could be interpreted as a reference to reincarnation but as with all things in the Bible, they can and have been interpreted in a many different ways.
How to Explore Past Lives
So, if you are interested in exploring the possibility of your own past lives, you can. There are many different ways to do so. Whether or not you belong to an organization that teaches about reincarnation, exploring past lives can be a healing and valuable experience. There are multiple ways of doing so.
The following are only a few, tried and true methods to reveal your past lives.
1. Psychic Reading of Akashic Records
A "reading" by a competent psychic is one method. The psychic goes into a light trance state and reads the Akashic Record. This is a sort of spiritual library, or universal database. According to Akashic Record readers, everything about everyone is recorded there. Each person has a file with a record of all his or her lives. They appear to the psychic as holographic images or impressions.
2. Aura Reading
Another method for exploring your past lives is to have a competent psychic read images in your aura (the emanation of energy around our body). It is believed that we keep the Akasha right with us all the time and that all of our lives will show up as 'videos' in the energy patterns of our aura.
Astrology is a popular method for finding information about past incarnations. By astrological calculation, a birth chart of your last life can be made. This is supposedly and accurate picture of that personality and the influences that beset you during that time. A skilled astrologer can read that life with much detail about your personality, character, manner of death, karma, and more.
Hypnosis is the most common method, and perhaps the most popular. A competent past life hypnotherapist guides you into unlocking the memories of previous incarnations so that you can experience them as close to first hand as possible. Under hypnotic regression people have been known to speak in long dead languages, or languages they had no prior knowledge of. Some, during regression have recalled, in detail, a skill or profession they had no way of knowing. Many times, places and names recalled under hypnotic regression have been verified by researchers seeking to prove or disprove the validity of reincarnation memories under hypnosis.
Hypnosis regression was made popular by hypnotist Morey Bernstein, who in 1952 hypnotized Virginia Tighe, a housewife in Pueblo, Colorado. Mrs. Tigh, how had no belief in reincarnation and was seeking hypnosis for another reason, began speaking, while under hypnosis, as a 19th century woman named Bridey Murphy. Mrs. Tigh had never been to Ireland, yet the detail she gave of her life there was astounding. The regression and transcripts along with subsequent attempts to verify her story were published in the book, "The Search for Bridey Murphy," Whether this was a real experience of a past life or not is still being debated.
For people who know nothing about hypnosis, or have never experienced it, hypnosis is a major and possibly frightening prospect. In reality, hypnosis is a natural stat into which we enter every day without even being aware of it. Reading a book, watching a movie or TV, meditating, concentrating on a project, and daydreaming are forms of hypnosis.
Many groups have stated that they can regress people to a past life without hypnosis, they they proceed to use a relaxation speech, talking in a slow, monotone voice and instructing their subjects to imagine this or that, and visualize this or that. No matter what name they give, anything which involves relaxation, imagination, visualization, and concentration, IS HYPNOSIS! An altered stat of consciousness, no matter how consciously alert the subject is, is hypnosis.
Piecing the Clues Together Without Hypnosis
Unfortunately, unless you have natural, spontaneous memories of a past life, there is no way of consciously recalling them without hypnosis. However, there are ways to put the pieces of your previous lives together using clues from your present life. Doing this might even trigger conscious memories of past life events. How? By examining your present life in ways you haven't done before.
Most of us don't remember our past lives consciously. Instead we are left with impressions, reactions, feelings, hunches, and unexplained preferences that are remnants of our previous lives.
Here is how to use the Examination Method to reveal valuable clues:
To begin piecing together a past life using the Examination Method, pay attention to dreams. Often memories of a past life are revealed in dreams. If you keep a dream journal and study it, the symbology will become clear to you, enabling you to interpret them. Remember, though that not all dreams are from past lives. We have dreams that deal with wishes, vent frustrations and aggressions, and solve every day problems. There are dreams that are precognitive, showing us the probably future. These all have their unique code, and feel. Mostly these are given to us in cryptic and bizarre symbolism.
Past life memory dreams, unlike all the other types are life-like, literal, and clear. They are accurate subconscious memories. By learning the symbology of your 'regular' dreams, you will be able to distinguish them from past life memories.
6. People in Your Present Life
Another method for piecing together your past lives is to examine people in your life. For example, think of someone you met and immediately disliked—for no apparent reason. Eliminate the possible explanation the s/he reminded you of someone you already dislike. After this is done, and you still dislike the person, still for no reason, you were probably meeting someone you knew in a past life that you had a negative encounter with or disliked then.
The reason this feeling is still with you is that you have not neutralized your experience of the experience of the person in the past life, creating a karmic situation. You will continue to meet this person in each life until you neutralize it either by letting go of the feelings or working out the situation through restitution or forgiveness.
On the opposite side, think of someone you met and instantly liked or loved. You are immediately attracted to some people before they utter a single word to you. These are people you have met in previous lives and had positive encounters with. The closer and stronger the relationship in the past, the stronger the attraction now. These people will most likely have some of the same strong and unexplained likes and dislikes that you have (unless they are working on different karma than you are).
7. Examining Places
Taking this process even further, examine how you feel about places, historical eras, cultures, and such. We all have strong and unexplained likes an dislikes. Look at any attraction you may have for a particular country or civilization. If you have always had a fascination for ancient Egypt, for example, or a love of Italy even though you have never been there, or collect anything depicting old Holland, and the like, it is probably that you spent a satisfying life there.
To explore that life further, analyze your feelings about it more carefully. Are you attracted to just one part of the country? What time period do you find most alluring? Do you find that life as a male or life as a female in that country holds more interest for you? What crafts, trades, or interests do you like about it?
8. Examine Your Talents
Examine any special talents you have. It has been said that everyone has a talent for something, possibly it's just underdeveloped. If that's so then, what makes you want to develop it? A talent is usually nothing more than an intense interest in and complete comprehension of something. This can occur at any age, but a true karmic talent is usually discovered in childhood. If you were a wiz kid at math, or played the violin like Stravinsky at six or seven, or put on ice skates for the first time and took off as if you were born in them, you are probably carrying over intense interests and accomplishments from past lives.
This is true even if your talent is a mild one, perhaps you paint well, or you have an above average mechanical aptitude, you may be a good marksman, or equestrian. The stronger the talent, the more lifetimes you spent developing it. Just as in this life, practice improves your skill at whatever you are striving to develop, practice throughout many lives keeps improving.
For example, perhaps you first picked up a paintbrush in the year 1440 and just dabbled in it, not being very good but enjoying yourself nevertheless. In your next incarnation, you also had an interest in painting. This time you were considered an above average, but not especially talented artist. With each successive lifetime, you get better and better until you are no longer considered a painter, but an artist.
Once you reach perfection in a skill, you have the choice of continuing it or dropping it altogether to develop something else. Examine your skills and talents and they will give you some idea of the lifestyle you led in your past lives.
9. Consider Your Physical Body
Even your body carries a physical record from past incarnations. Birth marks, unless inherited from parents, could be signs of a wound from a previous life. For example, a small, white birthmark on your back may indicate a severe burn, or a long, thin scar-shaped birthmark, could have been a knife wound. You carry these reminders with you until you neutralize the karma associated with them. Likely you will find the answer to who inflicted these wounds by looking at your list of "disliked" people.
10. List Your Findings
Make a list of the people and places you have a strong attraction, repulsion, or are completely neutral to. Make a list of your talents, physical characteristics, and any thing else that you suspect comes from a past life. Remember that whatever it is, it should have no known root in your present life. A clear map of a past life will emerge.
Remember, though, that all of our lives weren't necessarily satisfying and happy. Sometimes you will find that you are repelled or uncomfortable about a certain country or civilization. In this case, it's likely you led an unhappy, or tragic life there.
Explore your feelings in the same way you did for the happy life. this may not be as pleasant, but it will help you by clearing up a lot of the confusion in your mind. Once you realize your personal feelings were caused by something that is not a part of your life now, and that those feelings are holding you back in life, then you can eliminate them and get on with the business of living this life as wholly positive as possible.
If, in your examination, you find countries, eras, subjects, etc. that absolutely bore you to tears, things you have no interest in at all, either positive or negative, you have discovered areas that you have either never explored or have mastered and let go of.
For example, if you draw a complete blank when it comes to mathematics or art, likely you were never a mathematician or an artist. You may yet develop an interest in these areas, but in your past lives you have been involved in other things.
There may be other things in your life that are carry-overs from previous incarnations. Something about your personality—your likes, dislikes, interests, positive and negative feelings, and such—things you cannot attribute to environment, upbringing, or genetics, are probably karmic inheritances, things you brought with you from your previous lives.
In conclusion, examine all these areas; make lists and keep a dream journal. You will find that your past lives fall into place like pieces of a puzzle. Many times, doing this will trigger memories of events in a past life.
In addition, you can also use other methods for exploring your incarnations, such as astrology, psychic readings, and hypnosis with the Examination process, to have a richer, fuller experience.
You can explain and understand so much more about your present life, relationships, successes and failures by finding clues and answers in your past. If we are ignorant of the past, we are destined to repeat it. Learning the mistakes we made before goes a long way in helping us avoid them now.
Anita Burns is a certified Master Hypnotherapist, NLP practitioner, astrologer, and past life regressionist. If you want to explore your past lives with Anita, email, or call 951-738-8802