IMAGE: Some reading from past life therapies © Louise A. Shilton
In my earlier blog Past Lives in the Present I mentioned that I had a lightbulb moment in late 2010 when I first read Brian Weiss’ seminal book on the subject of past life regression hypnosis Many Lives, Many Masters—from its opening pages, I just knew that my path was to work in this area of healing therapy. And my last blog Past, Present and Future Lives: Where Brian Weiss and The Wachowskis Meet explored the portrayal of past, present and future lives of a group of souls interconnecting and interweaving, and a wonderful true life story along the same lines in another of Weiss’ books, Only Love is Real.
I had been aware for several years before this that I was to change my path from a science career into work that directly supported healing people’s hearts. Only thing was, I had no real idea how I was to do this work, or what modalities to train in. A career assessment by a counsellor friend in 2008/2009 showed that yes indeed, I was suited and hankering for more creative work, as well as work that directly engaged with and helped people. I looked at various counselling courses, psychology courses, acupuncture, and a range of other therapeutic techniques, but nothing felt quite right.
At least one thing was certain—working in the scientific environment was no longer right for me. Science had formerly excited me and driven me to study and work extremely hard, fuelled by my passion for wildlife and nature conservation. But for me, it was never going to be a lifelong career path—I was always going to change career around the age of 40. I knew this from 19 years of age—during my first experience of therapeutic massage, with a bit of reflexology mixed in, I had a revelation that I was going to retrain aged 40.
At that time I thought my life redirection would be in something like acupuncture. Thing was, this was my gap year working as a conservation volunteer before I started my ecology degree—so I didn’t focus on a career change before I even got started with my first one! However, it was always there—like a distant hum in the background—big change coming up aged 40! (This isn’t unique to me of course—many people change their lives dramatically around this age. It used to be called a “mid-life crisis”, but I think this term is used more in jest these days, as societal and cultural norms around careers are changing, at least in the west, whereby its much less common for someone to stay in one job for their entire working life—and increasingly common for people to try different jobs and apply their “transferable skills” in different settings and circumstances.)
So, aged 38 I read about past life memories being retrieved through hypnosis and had my “that’s it—this is what I am supposed to train in!” epiphany. Last year, aged 40, I went to USA to formally train in Past Life Regression Therapy with Dr Brian Weiss himself. (I have also been training in other related modalities over the last three years, and will continue to do so such that I keep integrating different tools and techniques, along with working intuitively and channelling from spirit guides, to better support people on their journey of healing and personal transformation.)
And now I have launched publicly with Life & Soul Insights, after working behind the scenes with friends and friends of friends for the last 18 months or so. And it feels great! I am very excited and feel blessed to be supporting people in this way—and I am honoured that people trust me to do this work with them. Trust is key when choosing any practitioner, but not least when you are looking for a facilitator for hypnosis!
So this brings me to the nitty gritty of what Past Life Regression Therapy really is—it’s a hypnotherapy technique. As the name suggests, hypnotherapy involves hypnosis of the client while the practitioner counsels and guides the client through the experience for the purpose of gaining insight and understanding about the source of any emotional blockages and behavioural patterns, and with a view to resolving these issues in their current life.
Something I like to emphasise—and Weiss also emphasised during the professional training course—the client is always in control. The practitioner is really a facilitator and guide for the client to reach a deeply relaxed state, such that mining their remembered and revisited experiences for insights into their present day issues is possible. The practitioner is not really hypnotising someone—as Weiss says, “all hypnosis is really self-hypnosis” and the client can always awaken if they feel the need to. For maximal healing benefit though, it’s usually best to stay in the process—i.e. in a deep state—until the facilitator brings you gently back to an awakened state.
And so past life therapy is a participatory technique—it is really a collaboration between the practitioner and the client. Therefore, successful therapy requires a high level of trust between the client and practitioner, as well as the willingness and ability of the client to completely relax. Great healing can be achieved in lighter states of hypnosis, but a deep state is desirable for accessing information from the subconscious memory. Our subconscious remembers everything—every experience our soul has ever had across lifetimes, and also from its natural state of pure consciousness during the discarnate phases that we call “life between lives”. (I recommend Michael Newton’s Journey of Souls for insights about our life as souls.)
Past lives recalled can be as an adult or child, and people in a very deep state of relaxation and focused concentration can recall any their experiences—even the death experience and their soul leaving the body, and life between lives. Past life therapy involves remembering and revisiting past experiences of the soul, and thus, it is not really a regression as such. I have therefore decided to call my practice of past life therapy “Past Life Recall Therapy” rather than “regression therapy”.
Opinion canvassed online via the Life & Soul Insights facebook page, and from people visiting my stall at a wellbeing expo, has been unanimously positive about the R word change of regression to recall. Like me, many were not comfortable with the term “regression”—some felt that it implied getting stuck in the past, and all considered that it had negative connotations. So, my PLR is Past Life Recall.
Lastly, the question remains, why would you go there? Why might you consider PLR Therapy? The reasons are many and varied, and potentially limitless! PLR is very effective for resolving persistent fears, phobias, anxieties, unresolved grief, and life-limiting behavioural patterns. By life-limiting, I mean behavioural patterns that are detracting, rather than enhancing, a person’s joy and success in life. But the benefits of PLR Therapy does not end here. PLR is fantastic for understanding relationship dynamics, as the other players in those dynamics may be identified in previous lifetimes, with similar or very different roles. PLR can provide comfort that a person will see their passed over loved ones again. PLR can provide confidence that another is a soulmate. PLR can provide insight into a person’s life lessons and life path. It can also provide insight into health issues, and sometimes even healing of those health issues. Dolores Cannon, who uses her own methodology of PLR called Quantum Healing Hypnosis Therapy (QHHT), has compiled a phenomenal number of case studies in her books—I have read of many where seemingly miraculous (from a human perspective) physical healings have been achieved while the client has been in a deep state of relaxation, accessing their subconscious knowledge and team of spirit guides. Weiss also reports subtle to miraculous and medically confirmed physical healings in his books, and I have heard him personally speak of miraculous healings occurring at his events. Something I have personally witnessed.
So, the reasons you might consider PLR Therapy are many and varied. You may also simply be curious, and that is okay too!
I hope this has shed some light on what PLR actually is and what it involves. In a radio interview recently I was asked what props I used, and I said my voice. My interviewer was slightly surprised at this, joking “no fob watch?”—no, just my voice and a comfy chair or couch for the client.
You can also read about past lives and PLR Therapy on this free downloadable PDF.
I would love to read your comments or answer any questions you have about past lives, hypnosis, and PLR Therapy!