Past life regression is a technique that uses hypnosis to recover what practitioners believe are memories of past lives or incarnations. The practice is widely considered discredited and unscientific by medical practitioners, and experts generally regard claims of recovered memories of past lives as fantasies or delusions or a type of confabulation. Past-life regression is typically undertaken either in pursuit of a spiritual experience, or in a psychotherapeutic setting. Most advocates loosely adhere to beliefs about reincarnation, though religious traditions that incorporate reincarnation generally do not include the idea of repressed memories of past lives.
The technique used during past-life regression involves the subject answering a series of questions while hypnotized to reveal identity and events of alleged past lives, a method similar to that used in recovered memory therapy and one that, similarly, often misrepresents memory as a faithful recording of previous events rather than a constructed set of recollections. The use of hypnosis and suggestive questions can tend to leave the subject particularly likely to hold distorted or false memories. The source of the memories is more likely cryptomnesia and confabulations that combine experiences, knowledge, imagination and suggestion or guidance from the hypnotist than recall of a previous existence. Once created, those memories are indistinguishable from memories based on events that occurred during the subject's life. Memories reported during past-life regression have been investigated, and revealed historical inaccuracies that are easily explained through a basic knowledge of history, elements of popular culture or books that discuss historical events. Experiments with subjects undergoing past-life regression indicate that a belief in reincarnation and suggestions by the hypnotist are the two most important factors regarding the contents of memories reported.
In the 2nd century BC, the Hindu scholar Patañjali, in his Yoga Sutras, discussed the idea of the soul becoming burdened with an accumulation of impressions as part of the karma from previous lives. Patañjali called the process of past-life regression prati-prasav (literally "reverse birthing"), and saw it as addressing current problems through memories of past lives. Some types of yoga continue to use prati-prasav as a practice.
In the religious mythology of China the deity Meng Po, also known as the "Lady of Forgetfullness", prevents souls from remembering their past lives: she gives them a bittersweet drink that erases all memories before they climb the wheel of reincarnation.
In the modern era, it was the works of Madame Blavatsky, co-founder of the Theosophical Society, which brought it a new found popularity, especially in the West. French educator Allan Kardec also researched into past life regression in The Spirits Book and Heaven and Hell. Past life regression therapy has been developed since the 1950s by psychologists, psychiatrists and mediums. The belief gained credibility because some of the advocates possess legitimate credentials, though these credentials were in areas unrelated to religion, psychotherapy or other domains dealing with past lives and mental health. Interest in the phenomenon started due to American housewife Virginia Tighe reporting and recounting the alleged memories of a 19th-century Irish woman named Bridey Murphy; later investigation failed to support the existence of such a woman and the memories were attributed to Tighe's childhood during which she spent time living next to an Irish immigrant with great similarity to the character she described.
Past life regression is widely rejected as a psychiatric treatment by clinical psychiatrists and psychologists. A 2006 survey found that a majority of a sample of doctoral level mental health professionals rated "Past Lives" therapy as "certainly discredited" as a treatment for mental or behavioral disorders.
In the West, past-life regression practitioners use hypnosis and suggestion to promote recall in their patients, using a series of questions designed to elicit statements and memories about the past life's history and identity. Some practitioners also use bridging techniques from a client's current-life problem to bring "past-life stories" to conscious awareness. Practitioners believe that unresolved issues from alleged past lives may be the cause of their patients' problems. One technique for accessing memories from a past life is detailed in a study by Nicholas P. Spanos from Carleton University, Ontario, Canada. Subjects of a study were at first told that they would be undergoing a hypnosis, and afterwards told, “You are now in a different life, living in another life that you have lived before in another time. You are now reliving that other life that you lived once before in a different time.” Next, after the administer asks “What name can I call you by? I want you to look down and tell me what you are wearing. Describe everything you are wearing in detail. Where are you?” Afterwards, the subjects were to chronicle the information that they could remember after regression in a past life. Past life regression can be achieved in as little as 15 minutes, but to recall past a point of death, and into "soul memories", it takes upwards of 45 minutes of trance induction. However, with psychotherapy clients who believe in past lives, irrespective of whether or not past lives exist, the use of past lives as a tool has been suggested.
Chinese numerologists use the Buddhist/Taoist text the Three Lives Book to describe details of past lives. Teachers of Eastern religion claim to be able to use siddhi or abhijna abilities to regress past lives (pubbenivāsānussati).
Psychologists assert that the "memories" recovered by techniques like past-life regression are the result of cryptomnesia: narratives created by the subconscious mind using imagination, forgotten information and suggestions from the therapist.[sources 1] Memories created under hypnosis are indistinguishable from actual memories and can be more vivid than factual memories. The greatest predictor of individuals reporting memories of past lives appears to be their beliefs—individuals who believe in reincarnation are more likely to report such memories, while skeptics or disbelievers are less so.
Examinations of three cases of apparent past life regression (Bridey Murphy, Jane Evans, and an unnamed English woman) revealed memories that were superficially convincing. However, investigation by experts in the languages used and historical periods described revealed flaws in all three patients' recall. The evidence included speech patterns that were "...used by movie makers and writers to convey the flavour of 16th century English speech" rather than actual Renaissance English, a date that was inaccurate but was the same as a recognized printing error in historical pamphlets, and a subject that reported historically accurate information from the Roman era that was identical to information found in a 1947 novel set in the same time as the individual's memories, with the same name reported by the person regressed. Other details cited are common knowledge and not evidence of the factual nature of the memories; subjects asked to provide historical information that would allow checking provided only vague responses that did not allow for verification, and sometimes were unable to provide critical details that would have been common knowledge (e.g. a subject described the life of a Japanese fighter pilot during World War II but was unable to identify Hirohito as the Emperor of Japan during the 1940s).
A 1976 study found that 40% of hypnotizable subjects described new identities and used different names when given a suggestion to regress past their birth. In the 1990s a series of experiments undertaken by Nicholas Spanos examined the nature of past life memories. Descriptions of alleged past lives were found to be extremely elaborate, with vivid, detailed descriptions. This, however, is not indicative of the validity of this therapeutic method. Subjects who reported memories of past lives exhibited high hypnotizability, and patients demonstrated that the expectations conveyed by the experimenter were most important in determining the characteristics of the reported memories. The degree to which the memories were considered credible by the experimental subjects was correlated most significantly to the subjects' beliefs about reincarnation and their expectation to remember a past life rather than hypnotizability. Spanos' research leads him to the conclusion that past lives are not memories, but actually social constructions based on patients acting "as if" they were someone else, but with significant flaws that would not be expected of actual memories. To create these memories, Spanos' subjects drew upon the expectations established by authority figures and information outside of the experiment such as television, novels, life experiences and their own desires. In sum, it is therefore suggested that past lives are likely false memories, implanted through the susceptability of the hypnotic method.
Past life regression has been critiqued for being unethical on the premises that it lacks any evidence to support these claims, and that the act increases one's susceptibility to false memories. Luis Cordón states that this can be problematic as it creates delusions under the guise of therapy. The memories are experienced as vivid as those based on events experienced in one's life, impossible to differentiate from true memories of actual events, and accordingly any damage can be difficult to undo.  As past life regression is rooted on the premise of reincarnation, many APA accredited organizations have begun to refute this as a therapeutic method on the basis of it being unethical. Additionally, the hypnotic methodology that underpins past life regression places the participant in a vulnerable position, susceptible to implantation of false memories. Research is needed to further understand the lack of validity of this method and to emphasize the potential harms that result of this therapeutic method being implemented in clinical practice.
There have been efforts to scientifically study past lives in journals dedicated to the topic. A "Strength of Case" scale attempting to assess the credibility of alleged past life memories has been established, and individual historical claims have been reviewed by historians for accuracy. 
Age regression in therapy is a technique in a psycho-therapeutic process that facilitates access to childhood memories, thoughts and feelings. Age regression includes hypnotherapy, a process where patients move their focus to memories of an earlier stage of life in order to explore these memories or to get in touch with some difficult-to-access aspects of their personality.Age regression has become quite controversial inside and outside the therapeutic community, with many cases involving alleged child abuse, alien abduction and other traumatic incidents subsequently being discredited.
The notion of age regression is central to attachment therapy whose proponents believe that a child who has missed out on his/her developmental stages can be made to experience those stages at a later age by a variety of techniques. Many of these techniques are intensely physical and confrontational and include forced holding and eye contact, sometimes while being required to access traumatic memories of past neglect or abuse or while being made to experience extreme emotions such as rage or fear.
Occasionally, 'rebirthing' has been used with tragic results. Accompanying parenting techniques may use bottle feeding and systems of complete control by the parent over the child's basic needs including toileting and water.Allan and the Ice-gods
Allan and the Ice-Gods is a novel by H. Rider Haggard featuring his recurring character Allan Quatermain, based on an idea given to Haggard by Rudyard Kipling. The story details Quatermain's past life regression to a Stone Age ancestor and the various adventures involved.The novel has been noted as a treatment of the topics of eugenics and evolution in literature and culture.Andrea Foulkes
Andrea Foulkes is a British past life regression therapist who is a co-host of Have I Been Here Before?, an ITV daytime television show. In the show celebrities are led by Foulkes to re-experience their past lives.
She was born in Stoke-on-Trent and grew up in Hough. She worked at a salon in Nantwich, before becoming a fashion model, and living in Milan and then London. She modelled frequently on the shopping channel QVC and appeared in numerous commercials.After attending mediumistic sessions, she claims to have discovered her intuitive and healing abilities. She was violently mugged outside her flat, and later said this experience was a trigger that caused her to give up modelling and focus on the 'inner world' of spirituality. In 2003 she appeared on Kilroy to speak about her experiences.She appeared on the television show This Morning for a year before the start of Have I Been here Before? Celebrities such as John Barrowman, David Seaman, and Jennie Bond appeared on the show, and Foulkes told them they had lived previous lives as a circus clown, Richard the Lionheart, and a destitute girl.
On 22 September 2009, she founded the 'World Peace Meditation Day', and was given an award by the Women's Federation for World Peace.Brian Weiss
Brian Leslie Weiss (born November 6, 1944) is an American psychiatrist, hypnotherapist, and author who specializes in past life regression. His research includes purported reincarnation, past life regression, future life progression, and survival of the human soul after death.Carol Bowman
Carol Bowman M.S. (born October 14, 1950) is an author, lecturer, counselor, and therapist, known for her work in studying cases of reincarnation, especially those involving young children.Have You Lived Before This Life?
Have You Lived Before This Life is a non-fiction book published by L. Ron Hubbard in 1958. It was one of the canonical texts of Scientology,The book was Hubbard's response to the success of the Bridey Murphy phenomenon in the UK. Hubbard saw this as an opportunity to increase public interest in past life regression.It purports to be a collection of "forty-one actual case histories" of reincarnation and past-life experiences, gleaned from auditing with an e-meter at the Church of Scientology's "Fifth London Advanced Clinical Course" held in October-November, 1958. Some of these "case histories" took place on other worlds or in the extremely distant past. The book was based on an earlier privately printed softcover circulation made available to students who attended that course.
Scientology's official website says of the book: "The major portion of the book is devoted to the auditing case histories of individuals, detailing their memories of past lives. These case histories graphically show how a person’s attitudes and actions in present time can be affected by incidents in his or her past lifetimes. They also document the improvements that occurred when such incidents were addressed and run out in auditing."
The book was in print until 1989. It is still sold in Church bookstores but it is not currently offered for sale today by Scientology's Bridge Publications and New Era Publications websites.Institut Métapsychique International
The Institut Métapsychique International (IMI) is a French parapsychological organization that studies paranormal phenomena. It was created in 1919 by Jean Meyer, Gustav Geley and Professor Rocco Santoliquido.Notable past presidents have included Charles Richet (1930-1935) and René Warcollier (1950-1962). Eugéne Osty served as a director (1925-1938).Melvin Harris
Melvin Charles Harris (1930 – 2004) was a British author, broadcaster, researcher and skeptic.Michael Newton
Michael Newton may refer to:
Michael Newton (academic) (born 1965), Scottish Gaelic language activist and Celtic scholar
Michael Newton (footballer) (born 1987), Australian rules footballer for Melbourne in the Australian Football League
Michael Newton (author) (born 1951), American author best known for his work on Don Pendleton's Mack Bolan series
Michael Newton (hypnotist), known for his books about "past life regression"
Michael Newton (field hockey) (born 1952), American field hockey player
Sir Michael Newton, 4th Baronet, Member of Parliament for Grantham and Beverley
Michael Newton (d. 1803), Member of Parliament for Beverley
Michael A. Newton (born 1964), Canadian statisticianOrbs (band)
Orbs is an American band consisting of Dan Briggs of Between the Buried and Me, Adam Fisher of Fear Before the March of Flames, and Ashley Ellyllon, formerly of Abigail Williams and Cradle of Filth.Past life
Past life, a concept found within reincarnation, may refer to:
Past life regression, a technique for uncovering evidence of past lives
Past Life (TV series), an American crime drama television series with an original run in the first half of 2010
Past Life (film), in Hebrew: Ha-Khata'im (lit., The Sins), 2016 Israeli film written and directed by Avi Nesher
Past Life Trauma (1985–1992), album
Past Life Martyred Saints, album
Past Life (Maggie Rogers song)
Past Life (Tame Impala song)Pinny Grylls
Pinny Grylls is a documentary filmmaker.
In 2002 Grylls and Rachel Millward co-founded the Birds Eye View Film Festival. BEV showcased films by emerging women filmmakers from around the world, it became the UK's first major film festival for female filmmakers. In 2003, Millward took control of Birds Eye View, and Grylls focused on her career as a documentary filmmaker.
In 2006 Grylls was one of the recipients of the 2006 Film London UK Film Council Digital Shorts Scheme grants for her 2nd short documentary 'Peter and Ben' completed in 2007]. This multi - award winning film was screened at the London International Film Festival 2007 and at International Documentary Filmfestival Amsterdam where it was nominated for prestigious Silver Cub Award. It has won Best Documentary at Aspen Shorts Fest 2008 and 3 awards at the 5th London Short Film Festival - the FourDocs Award for Best Documentary the VX Auteur Award and 'Highly Commended' for the Best Film Award. It also won the SXSouthWest Click Grand Jury Prize in 2008. It also screened in the International Competition at Clermont-Ferrand Short Film Festival 2008. In 2009 it won the Shooting People Werner Herzog Competition.
In 2008 she was nominated for a 2008 Channel Four 4Talent Award in the 'Short Documentary' category. In 2010 she directed a First Cut episode for Channel 4; "Who Do You Think You Were?" explored the phenomenon of past life regression. The documentary was Pick of The Day in the Observer, Daily Mail, Sunday Telegraph and Radio Times. It was given 4 stars in Time Out.
On 19 December 2010 Grylls was featured in an Observer article as one of a crop of 'innovative daring directors' making short films for the web. Observer, 19 December 2010]
Specialising in the arts and human interest stories, Pinny has since made a variety of documentaries, namely The Hour for The National Theatre, Becoming Zerlina for The Royal Opera House, and Thank you Women for The Guardian. She has also directed commercials for British Gas, Aldi and Dove. She is also a freelance Video Ethnographer.
In 2014 she became a children's author and wrote The Very Best Sheepdog, illustrated by Rosie Wellesley, published by Pavilion Books.Raaz Pichhle Janam Ka
Raaz Pichhle Janm Ka is an Indian reality television series based on the technique of past life regression. The NDTV Imagine show is hosted by actor Ravi Kishan, while the past life regression sessions are conducted by Mumbai-based psychologist Trupti Jayin. The first season started on 7 December 2009 and 15 January 2010, while Second season started on October 23, 2010, with actor, Chunky Pandey as guest.Participants include a mixture of invited celebrities and ordinary people selected through a phone-in process. Celebrity participants have included Shekhar Suman, Monica Bedi, Celina Jaitley, Payal Rohatgi and Manvendra Singh Gohil.Roger Woolger
Roger J. Woolger (December 18, 1944 – November 18, 2011) was a British-American psychotherapist, lecturer, and author specializing in past life regression spirit release and shamanic healing. He was educated at the University of Oxford and King's College London, where he gained degrees in psychology, religion, and philosophy. He received his psychology and philosophy degree from the University of Oxford and he received his PhD in comparative religion from King's College. He then trained as an analyst at the C. G. Jung Institute in Zürich.Ruth Montgomery
Ruth Shick Montgomery (June 11, 1912 – June 10, 2001) was a journalist with a long and distinguished career as a reporter, correspondent, and syndicated columnist in Washington, DC.
Later in life she became a self-proclaimed psychic and author of numerous books on occult and New Age subjects, whose predictions regarding the "polar shift of 1999" heads a long list of attempts to foretell the future. She was a biographer of alleged paranormal medium Jeane Dixon and a protégée of Arthur Ford, who posited unsupported claims that he, (like Edgar Cayce), could access the Akashic Records (or database) of the Universe.
After her long-time friend and mentor, celebrity medium Arthur Ford, died, Montgomery began automatic writing, first with a pencil, later with a typewriter, and said she was able to communicate with Ford, though this claim was never tested under laboratory conditions. According to Montgomery, this postmortem communication was the basis for a lengthy series of books which resulted in her achieving minor celebrity status during the 1960s and 1970s, at which time Montgomery became a regular on the morning talk show circuit, and was, for a time, a household name.
Montgomery, who enjoyed great financial success via her prolific New Age writings, initially claimed to believe her mission on Earth was to educate the public regarding her views on life after death, which is common among spiritualists. However, she also studied reincarnation and came to believe that mental and physical illnesses often have their origins in past lives. Montgomery wrote of such things as birth marks indicating the possible sites of past life injuries, and commented that often children born with serious defects or illnesses are in fact re-paying debts incurred in previous existences. Her books were often filled with claims about the past lives of the famous among her contemporaries, stating that Ernest Hemingway had once been a Hun warrior, and that in a previous incarnation Jacqueline Kennedy was a famed French queen.
Montgomery was a believer in the existence of extraterrestrial contact, and claimed to have met non-human aliens on a number of occasions, particularly when she resided in Mexico in the 1970s, though she presented no physical evidence of these experiences. In one book she wrote of missing an opportunity to ride in a flying saucer due to her husband, Bob, enduring a minor illness at the time the offer of a ride was made by space aliens.
With other like-minded mystics, Montgomery founded the Association for Past Life Research and Therapy. Her many books (allegedly channeled via automatic writing from her spirit guides) popularized spiritualist notions in public consciousness in the 1960s through the 1990s, and paved the way for what is now known as the New Age movement. Montgomery is particularly noted for popularizing the walk-in theory whereby a person's soul can depart a hurt or anguished body and be replaced with a new soul which overtakes the body. She filled a book with an extensive list of present-day and historical individuals she said were examples of "walk-ins" and claimed several US Presidents were among this group.Ruth Norman
Ruth E. Norman (born Ruth Nields; August 18, 1900 – July 12, 1993), also known as Uriel, was an American religious leader who co-founded the Unarius Academy of Science, based in Southern California. Raised in California, Norman received little education and worked from an early age in a variety of jobs. In the 1940s, she developed an interest in psychic phenomena and past-life regression. These pursuits led to her introduction to Ernest Norman, a self-described psychic, in 1954. He engaged in channeling, past-life regression, and attempts at communication with extraterrestrials. She married Ernest, her fourth husband, in the mid-1950s. Together they published several books about his revelations and formed Unarius, an organization which later became known as the Unarius Academy of Science, to popularize his teachings. The couple discussed numerous details about their past lives and spiritual visits to other planets, forming a mythology from these accounts.
After Ernest died in 1971, Ruth succeeded him as their group's leader and primary channeler. She subsequently began publishing accounts of her experiences and revelations. In early 1974, she predicted that a space fleet of benevolent extraterrestrials, the Space Brothers, would land on Earth later that year, which led the Unarius Academy to purchase a property to serve as the landing site. After the extraterrestrials failed to appear, Norman said that trauma she had suffered in a past life had caused her to make an inaccurate prediction. Undaunted, she rented a building for Unarius' meetings and sought publicity for the movement, claiming to have united the Earth with an interplanetary confederation. She revised the Space Brothers' expected landing date several times, before finally settling on 2001. Her health declined in the late 1980s, prompting her students to try to heal her with rituals of past-life regression. Despite predicting that she would live to see the extraterrestrials land, Norman died in 1993. Unarius has continued to operate after her death, and formed a board of directors. Since the 2000s, leaders have concentrated on individual transformation leading to spiritual change in humankind.The Fourth Tower of Inverness
The Fourth Tower of Inverness is a 1972 radio drama, produced by the ZBS Foundation. It is the first of the Jack Flanders adventure series, and combines elements of Americana and Old-time radio with metaphysical concepts such as past life regression, Sufi wisdom, Tibetan Buddhism and shamanistic communication with the natural world.The adventure takes place in an estate called Inverness, and the action focuses upon a mysterious and (at first) illusory extra tower of the mansion, which many visitors have attempted to reach and ultimately vanished in the process. The program was originally broadcast in 7-minute-long episodes and runs a total of seven and half hours.