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Venerina Conti

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Calling any Druze in our community - I'd like to hear from you please
2/21/2008 11:15:28 AM
... I have to ask this .... what exactly is modern science doing?

Picture this. You’re nearly 40 years old. Your name is Hanan. You have three beautiful children who love you more than anyone else.  You’re married to the man of your dreams.  Everything is perfect; just the way you always wanted it to be.

One day, you leave your family and travel abroad for heart surgery. Before the operation you call your daughter but you can’t get through. After the operation, you want to call but you can’t remember the last digit in the number. You get frustrated. You want to go home to your loved ones but you can’t.  You’re forced to live with another family.

Years pass. Everyday you think about your family. Your love for them never dies. Finally, one day you are allowed to meet up with them again, but they don’t love you the same way. You find out your husband has another woman. Your children don’t want to look at you. You feel betrayed, hurt and rejected. Your world is completely shattered. Your very reason for being is taken away from you for the second time. 

It’s not your fault. All you want is for things to be the way they were before the operation.  You want your family to love you and accept you again. You want them to be happy to see you. You want your dream back. There’s only one obstacle. You’re 5 years old and your name is Suzanne. How do you deal with the heartache? How do you live with the trauma?

If you think this sounds unreal. Think again. This is just one of many documented cases of reincarnation and past life memories around today.

What is reincarnation? Reincarnation comes from the Eastern philosophies of Hinduism, Buddhism and Taoism. They believe a soul comes back, in many bodies, over many lifetimes to learn and grow. It is its chance to make old wrongs right. 

In Western culture, Edgar Cayce was one of the first people to introduce this philosophy back in the 1950s. In many of his readings, he says the main purpose of the soul is to learn and grow; to earn its place next to the Creator. 

However, reincarnation is not widely accepted among Christians. Christianity says we have two options in this lifetime. We can either be good and go to heaven, or we can be bad and go to hell.  Either way, we don’t get second chances.  Yet, nowadays religious faith is being challenged more and more. Many people are turning to Holistic ways of living. Media is full of “alternative” ways of thinking. So, even many Christians find themselves curious about the subject.

There are many books available on reincarnation like Dr. Brian Weiss’s Many Lives, Many Masters (1988) and Tom Shroder’s Old Souls (1999). The problem with authors (sceptics and believers alike), researchers and speculators is that everyone is too busy trying to prove if reincarnation exists or not. Some argue over proof and lack of it.  Some argue how research methods are not good enough. Some are too busy just trying to make a name for themselves.

While researching the American, Italian, British and Portuguese Psychological societies online, I found that nobody is studying how memories of past lives directly or indirectly affect children’s mental health.  Nobody is offering professional help for teenagers who live with the suffering these memories cause.  Nobody is developing new models of thought to help these young people.  Why?

We like to think of ourselves as an evolved society of human beings but science and scientists are behind the times; not just in Western societies. Science refuses to accept that reincarnation exists because there are no hard facts.  My question is how can we continue to let these children suffer in the name of a “globally accepted” science that is completely out of date? Why can’t we (as scientists) put our beliefs, religion, culture and egos aside to find new ways of helping these children?

In Western society, we choose to believe or not in reincarnation. However, for the Druze (or Druse) memories of past lives are very real. They are a group of people who follow the spiritual faith of El-Mowahideen El-Druze. It is not certain but the Druze faith may have started in Egypt about 1000 years ago. According to the Druze Organisation, nowadays there are almost one million followers worldwide. Many live in Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, parts of India and Egypt. Many others live in Western societies. (www.druzenet.org/dnenglish.html)

Although the Druze basic religious beliefs begin in Islam, their faith is very different. They believe their spiritual leader, El-Mowahideen El-Druze, was the reincarnation of God. They believe in the efforts of man and his actions.  Their central philosophy is that a soul will return to earth many lifetimes to learn and grow. They believe it has done so since the beginning of time and will do so until the end of time. 

These differences caused religious wars in regions such as the Gaza strip. They also played a part in the civil war in Lebanon.

During his (almost) 40 year career, Dr. Ian Stevenson travelled throughout Lebanon and India documenting cases of past life memories. He interviewed thousands of Druze children, their family members, friends and neighbours.  He also did follow-up interviews to see how memories of past lives affected behaviour in adult life. Yet, he offers little or no research on mental health issues.

Shroder documents more than twenty cases from Stevenson’s 1998 visit in Old Souls.  He also mentions some cases found in the United States of America.

The first person to bring past life memories to the general public, was Dr. Brian Weiss. In 1988 he published: Many Lives, Many Masters. In it, he speaks of his patient Catherine, who comes to him because she is seeking a cure for her fears of water and choking, dieing and airplanes.

At first, he believes these fears come from somewhere in Catherine’s childhood.  So, they both agree hypnotherapy is the best treatment. Hypnotherapy is a form of hypnosis used to bring painful, hidden memories back into the waking mind.  So, the professional can help a patient face them, deal with them and let them go.  This is the way Inner healing begins.

During hypnotherapy, a professional uses hypnotic suggestions to guide a person into a deep state of relaxation. In this state, the conscious mind, which processes all the information we receive, is temporarily switched off.  So, we are free to enter the sub-conscious mind. This is where we store all information we are not fully aware of; including painful memories. 

Catherine has several hypnotherapy sessions with Dr. Weiss.  He asks her to remember anything from her childhood that she associates with her fears.  She remembers nothing. One day, Weiss gives her a different type of hypnotic suggestion.  He asks her to remember the first ever memory she feels is the cause.  Suddenly, Catherine starts talking about previous lives.

As the memories unfold, Weiss discovers that her fear of water comes from drowning in another life.  Her fear of airplanes comes from being a male soldier in the Second World War. Slowly, he finds that every current fear of hers comes from something that happened in another lifetime.

They begin to see progress and Catherine’s fears begin to disappear. However, she is mentally disturbed by knowing that she is talking about past lives.  Reincarnation is not a word that is in her vocabulary since it challenges her beliefs.  Dr. Weiss has to convince her a lot to continue the sessions.

As far as I am aware, there is no follow-up research to say how Catherine was mentally marked by her experience. Her fears disappeared but has her life changed as a result?  Has she suffered any form of identity crisis?  Did what she gain outweigh what she lost? These are all questions that remain unanswered.

One of Dr. Stevenson’s cases, Daniel, remembered dieing in a car accident when he lived as a young man called Rashid. He started speaking of this as a very young child. He remembered names, faces, his previous mother, his family members and so on. He accused his current mother of not being his mother; his family of not being his real family. He insisted daily on being taken back to his real family.  

His mother says that, as a child, Daniel didn’t like getting in the car. Also, that he screamed and cried every time they drove past the scene of the accident. 

As a man, Daniel tells us that he likes cars but he still has a fear of fast driving. He, also, still has a fear of the place where the accident happened.  So, simply talking about traumas from past lives is not enough to make fears disappear. At least not in every case as Weiss would have us believe.

Daniel only begins to feel better when he and his family meet Rashid’s. Luckily, they all find support and friendship in one another. Daniel’s parents no longer see their child suffering and they become more accepted by him. Rashid’s parents no longer grieve because they have a part of their son back and Daniel finds himself with two loving support groups he can turn to.  Everyone is happy and the trauma is overcome.

But what about Suzanne’s case? She was only six months old when she tried to phone Hanan’s daughter;  Leila. She is now a young woman and still very much in love with her husband. She still misses her children and cries for them as a mother would. As well as coming to terms with her new life and growing up, she has to deal with emotions of loss, anger, jealousy etc. tied to her last life. 

Over the years, Farouk decided to break all ties with her because of his own feelings of pain and guilt. He and the family believed she was Hanan but they couldn’t deal with the fact that she was now a little girl.  The only solution was to walk away.  However, walking away is only avoiding the issue.  Neither parties involved had professional help they could turn to.  Now in his sixties, Farouk is still affected by the experience.

 

Suzanne’s life is not moving forward and she is not mentally developing in a healthy way.  She is living in the past and nobody is helping her to come through this. Who she was is very real to her; like for many others. The feelings and emotions of the past life are very real. It is not about having some memories of being someone else.  It is not about having fears that come from somewhere unknown as with Catherine. It is about being born as the same identity in a different body, a different environment and in a different family. 

Psychiatrist Jim Tucker explains this as a transfer of one person’s personality into another.  However, nobody knows what a personality is.  Nobody knows what a soul is.  So, it’s impossible to explain how either one can go from one body to another.  At present, psychology and science offer no help either.  In fact, they are challenged by the very existence of children like Suzanne.

Psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud was the first to say that infants, as young as six months, are only capable of satisfying their biological needs.  They have no awareness similar to that of adults.  He says personality only develops while growing up. 

Carl Jung, founder of analytical psychology, proposed that babies are born with instincts.  Thus, they automatically know how to get attention, when and how to cry for food etc. It is something he believed we all shared in common in a collective unconscious.

Psychologist, Jean Piaget, in his Theory of Cognitive Development proposed that infants only begin to put together actions (on purpose) by the age of 2 years.  Up until that time, he believes they only understand the world through how they interpret it.  They learn by trial and error of their actions.

Yet, at six months, Suzanne behaves similar to an adult. She picks up a phone and tries to call Hanan’s daughter’s. She shows no sign of understanding she is a baby. She is only held back by the limiting abilities of her physical age.

This is not the first case where this appears.  Another infant called Joseph insisted his mother buy him size 8 shoes. She tells him they will be too big but he doesn’t  believe it until he tries them on.  In another case, Robert can speak and string whole sentences together by the age of 6 months.

These children are outside the normal child development models presented above.  Unfortunately, nobody is developing a model for them. There are no guidelines to help professionals help them. We need to be open to new possibilities and start looking at things in a different way if we are to find a solution. Not only would it be beneficial for cases of reincarnation, it would help to explain the development of child geniuses in the world.   

However, science continues to ignore the issue. So, what are we left with? Transpersonal and Holistic psychology. These are relatively new fields that look at the person as a unique individual made up of mind, body and soul.  They do not stick to strict clinical methods of investigation like conventional science but it does not make them any less of value. They give individuals the safety to talk about memories of past lives. 

However, they fail to offer cross-cultural understanding. To understand a culture, one has to live in that culture.  One has to be able to put aside their own belief systems.  One has to be accepted into that culture and break through barriers of prejudice.  One has to be able to communicate in a way that is understandable in another culture.  Most important of all, one has to learn to be humble in front of another culture.

Having travelled extensively throughout 39 countries and worked with almost every nationality on the planet, I know how important adaptation and respect is. Too many wars have pulled us apart as human beings. 

It’s time we put our egos aside and worked together as one people.  It’s time that science and transpersonal science find a way to work together.  It’s time to stop fighting over who is right and who is wrong.  If we are going to help children with past life memories, we need to develop new ways of thinking.  We need to come up with new models and guidelines to help professionals have a better understanding. 

Children are children.  They are the future of this world.  As such, they deserve the best attention we can give them, regardless of their culture, religion, colour or belief.  Unless we find new ways of helping them, we will never be able to call ourselves evolved human beings.

 

If there are Druze in our community, I would dearly love to hear from you in the strictest confidence.  Please contact me at: venerinac@yahoo.co.uk or send me a private message through AdlandPro.

Thank you and take care,
Namaste
V

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Roger Macdivitt .

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Re: Calling any Druze in our community - I'd like to hear from you please
2/21/2008 1:47:55 PM

Hi Venerina,

Wow, that is a LOT of information and as a hypnotherapist I would need as much space in your forum as your posting to do this any justice.

There are so many possible causes/senarios for much of this.

Don't get me wrong, I don't know any more than you or wish to deny any claims made. It is fascinating stuff. I fear the REAL answer is still a long way off. Good luck with your research.

Unfortunately I know no Druze so in that respect am unable to help.

Roger Macdivitt

Cert Hypnotherapist and NLP practitioner

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Jill Bachman

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Re: Calling any Druze in our community - I'd like to hear from you please
2/23/2008 10:10:56 PM

Hi Venerina,

Wow!   What an interesting article.  I could see and FEEL some much truth in every word.

I am not a Druze, but I believe I must think like one.  LOL

We are living in amazing times, and very soon I believe many truths will be unfolding that will begin to unite and heal mankind.  It cannot happen soon enough.

I have missed you!  :-)

Hugs and blessings,  Jill
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