- Education and Science
Past Life Regression in Hypnotherapy
Basics of Past Life Regression therapy
A couple of years ago I took a continuing education certification course in Past Life Regression Hypnotherapy. It was from the American Hypnosis Association in conjunction with the HMI College of Hypnotherapy in Tarzana, California. In that course I learned the basics of taking my client from a basic hypnotic induction to a past life experience. I've done about a dozen sessions since then and learned a great deal more about this rather unusual therapy.
Most hypnotherapy centers around assisting a client with a compulsive behavior to re-establish control using hypnotic suggestion. Past life regression therapy is a notable exception to this usual pattern. Instead of trying to change an established behavior we are attempting to penetrate the firewall between the person's present life and a past life. It's a very different thing entirely from most hypnotherapy.
Completely verified past lives are very rare. The best example is that of James Leininger. So compelling was the evidence that ABC Television did a documentary on his life and that of the former James Huston, U.S Navy pilot who died in combat in WWII. The fact that verifiable evidence of past lives is so rare can help us to understand the difficulties and limitations of this therapy. James was a child when he was troubled with memories of being trapped inside a burning airplane. He actively remembered many details of his former life and more details emerged under hypnosis. His trauma was greatly reduced as a result of his hypnosis sessions and James is a perfect example of the healing power of this therapy. It is important to note that James was a child when this was done. As we age and accumulate more memories and experiences, past life memories, plots of books, movies and TV shows tend to confabulate in the sub-conscious. What emerges under hypnosis can be quite a blend of many things.
Most of the requests that I get for past life regressions are from adults and most of these are from people who are curious about the subject and about what sort of past life they may have had. This is, of course, both normal and understandable. It is not, however, a sound platform for therapy since no past life trauma is pre-existing nor does it hold high promise for a sterling experience. In adults, the filters between the past and present lives are fairly solid and only fragments or vague impressions result.
Past life regression hypnotherapy is clinically indicated if past life trauma is surfacing frequently in waking moments or lucid dreams. It is also useful in relieving a morbid fear of death. I suspect that it may be useful in treating some cases of gender dysphoria in those individuals who prefer to accept their biological status quo but that is only a hunch on my part.