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Tuesday October 5, 2004: Past Life Regression

M. was just telling me about a group meeting where a couple was regressed to learn about their past lives. The lives uncovered were commonplace, revealing little of personal or historical interest. The chairman asked the pair to follow up the regression with private sessions in an attempt to get more details, and to verify from records the existence of the person who gave their name during the session.

  I'm not sure if M. attended the session out of interest in his own past, or simply to meet people who shared his curiosity about other realities. It really doesn't matter --  it's wonderful to see people open to exploration of multidimensional reality.

I understand the value in joining groups and sharing ideas.  As M. often points out, unless people are willing to share inner experiences, it's hard to advance public or scientific understanding of other realities.  As for me -- I've been a loner for so long that my skepticism (and my own experiences) may always get in the way of joining groups.

I do, however, want to sympathize with people's curiosity and their need to prove reincarnation to themselves. To know that you have lived before this life began, is to know you will continue living after this life ends. That is no trivial thing, and if that's the only reason for wanting to be regressed, then people should go for it.

 Personally, I've found most past lifetimes don't affect today's world.  Most lifetimes I've seen remain simply curiosities.  However, I have found value in learning about past lives that connect to a current situation. 

 One of my difficult lifetimes had to be addressed because of an irrational fear of water, which seems strange considering my background.  I grew up in a family where summers were spent with swim lessons and joining friends nearly every day at the community pool. The family spent vacations at a lake, where we children were not allowed to go without life-jackets in boats until we could swim half a mile or two miles across the lake (depending on where we took the boat). Despite learning how to relax and swim distance, there were always brief moments when I was terrorized by an illogical fear of drowning, a fear that would hit me whenever I got the smallest amount of water in my mouth or my nose.  In a family that loved water, I learned to hide my shortcoming.

I married a water baby. I knew he loved scuba diving and had been a lifeguard, but did not think that would affect me.  Somewhere along the way, my husband decided to take me swimming every Saturday as a couple activity.  I'd put on flippers, and practice swimming underwater until I could manage the length of the pool on one breath.  I had no problem relaxing in the water, but these trips to the swimming pool were a task to get out of the way.

 When I took a scuba class to appease my husband, I ran into problems on the open water dive that brought all my old fears to the surface. To do the final underwater test freaked me out and I did not do as well as I should have. I asked to return the following week after confronting my fears.

With some issues, I get right down to business. Before the day was through, I'd found the time to sit in meditation.  Focusing on the emotion, I regressed myself into the past -- only to find myself on a slave ship that was about to be overtaken by a British warship. Fearful of being caught with illegal cargo, the crew dragged the slaves (still shackled in heavy chains) on deck and began throwing them overboard. An overpowering fear welled up inside me as I watch the group before me, dragged to the side and thrown to their watery graves.

 It was not drowning that scared me so. (That came as a big shock to current day me.) Nor was it death that I feared.  I'd been a warrior, and had never feared death in hunt or battle. How different to die here, so far from land.  All around me I saw only water -- water that left no marks, no trace of the path back home.  How would I ever return to my village when I could find no tracks to follow?  Those who could not return to the village became lost souls. The fear of drowning here was the fear of an eternity of loneliness, wandering lost forever through the afterlife.

Coming out from the regression, I cried for at least half an hour, confronting the emotions over and over until they were finally emptied from me. To immerse oneself in the depth of feeling until you move past the emotion is not easy or comfortable, but the results are worth it.  The following week, I passed my scuba test.  The week after, when my husband and I went to the pool to swim, I slipped into the water with a new ease. Water in the mouth became just that--water in the mouth.  Swimming became a sensuous instead of strenuous exercise.

Did I become a water baby? Hardly. I seldom get my feet wet these days (too old for those swimsuits), but my relationship with water did change.  The fears of that lifetime are behind me and that is no minor thing.

This is where I think the value of past lifetimes rests.  We carry not only the bruises and defenses of this lifetime, but of the past as well.  If there is any comfort, it is that we also carry the affection that binds our heart to loved ones. Powerful emotions -- that is what gets carried forward in our memory, be it conscious or unconscious.  If we are to look back to the past, let it be to heal the wounds and reclaim the friendships.



Posted on Tuesday, October 5, 2004 at 05:26AM by Registered CommenterThe Skeptical Mystic | CommentsPost a Comment

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