A dose of the past
Past life regression therapists will take you back in time to find causes of phobias and ailments that plague you, and try to heal you. Ayesha Banerjee finds out more.
Ever met someone and felt an instant connection with them? Ever felt afraid of something you’ve got no reason to fear – like fire? Or water? Ever visited a city for the first time and felt convinced you’ve been there before? This could be evidence of your having walked this earth many times before this lifetime.
For Delhi-based Blossom Furtado, hypnotherapist, regression and spiritual therapist, one life is an amalgamation of many. Before she became a healer, Furtado worked in corporate jobs and set up an IATA-recognised travel agency, and then an event management company. She works with the premise that each person on this earth has lived many lifetimes and carries with him or her memories of those lives. Some lives are incomplete and tend to disturb and stop people from moving ahead in their current lives. “By accessing these memories (hypno-therapists help a client relax and talk him or her ‘back’ to the past) we are able to complete them and their life’s works,” says Furtado.
Illnesses, addictions, phobias... PLR, or past-life regression, therapists claim to have cures for all kinds of ailments. They also help people use past lifetimes as a resource and bring back talents and strengths to support them in the here and now.
Furtado, who has been married to a publisher for over 35 years and has two daughers, a grandson (whom she adores) and six dogs, uses hypnosis among other techniques in her work. Clients go into a state of deep relaxation (akin to sleep) till they reach the source of the issue (bothering them) or challenge. “We avoid using the word ‘problem’,” she says.
Many therapists like her function with what they call a ‘parataxic distortion’, which means not really responding to the issue/person/place or event as it is happening in the here and now but to the reaction they trigger off subconsciously. For example, says Furtado, “I may have spoken to a friend in 2005, had a terrible argument and I might have left the discussion feeling upset and miserable. Now, in 2010, I meet this same friend again and instantly respond to her based on how I felt during the argument.” The past is always factored in when assessing the status of relationships, or with any problem.
“We assist our clients to explore, discover, become aware, accept, take responsibility and then take action. We show them how to live mindfully by accessing answers from within. All our answers lie deep within us and yet we search for solutions outside, and continue to remain miserable,” says Furtado.
Hypnosis, quick visits to the past... all of it sounds rather mysterious. So, is there something unusual about a therapist’s workspace?
Gurpreet Singh, who has been in the corporate sector and took up PLR therapy four years ago, says “You don’t need much space. A room with a good ambience even at home that would make a client comfortable, will do. There should be a couch or a reclining chair for the client. Lighten the place with soft music and aroma from oils, like lavender.”
The therapy, Singh says, works miraculously well, and “that’s enough reason for me to be in it. After all, it’s the result that counts.”
What's it about?
Past life regression (PLR) is an altered state of consciousness during which (it is believed), subjects can access memories of their past lives. A PLR therapist, during a session, helps subjects relax deeply and reach a state in which they are able to access their subconscious mind where all memories, including those (theapists believe) from past lives, are stored. By reliving the past (claim therapists), a person can find out the root cause of certain ailments, phobias, etc, and even get a direction on how his or her life is to be lived
5 am: Wake up, get ready
5.30 am: Chant mantras
6 am: Meditate
10 am: Breakfast
10.30 am: First client walks in for her second appointment. Spend considerable amount of time with her, find her in a vastly improved state of mind. The
depression seems to have lifted miraculously
2 pm: Break for lunch
3 pm: More clients walk in
8.30 pm: Finish work for the day
9 pm: Dinner, time with family
10 pm: Light incense sticks, candles and meditate
PLR therapy can be done full-time or even part-time along with whatever else a person is doing. In India, most therapists charge on a per-session basis whereas in Europe and USA all charge by the hour. In our country, depending on the skill and ability of the practitioner, rates could vary from Rs. 1,000 to Rs. 5,000 per session. There can always be exceptions on either side of that range. On an average a session may take 1.5 to 2 hours
. Adept at helping clients relax
. Good listening skills
. Adept at translating what the client is trying to say
. Able to calm clients who get agitated during therapy
How do i get there?
PLR is, at its foundation, a deeply spiritual practice. It needs training as well as an inclination. One can train with institutes such as the Hypnotherapy School of India (HSI) in New Delhi, or the Life Research Academy, Hyderabad. HSI courses are assessed and validated by the General Hypnotherapy Standards Council of the UK and recognised by the European Association for Regression Therapists. Course duration is of over 700 hours and includes classroom training, demonstrations, supervised practice and internships at HSI clinics. Courses are spread over four modules: Level one (basic hypnosis and inductions) costs Rs 8000; level two (energy work and regression) costs Rs 14,000; level three (regression therapy and diagnostic techniques) costs Rs 14,000 and level four (clinical hypnotherapy) costs Rs 21,000.
At the Life Research Academy, training costs come up to about Rs 40,000 to Rs 45,000. Someone who is truly dedicated may be ready to start practise after a year’s work. Guidance from a senior colleague would prove very helpful
Institutes & urls
. The Hypnotherapy School of India, New Delhi.
Email: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tel: 9811047587, 9810095486
. Life Research Academy, Hyderabad
Contact Gurpreet Singh at 9818791853,
Pros & Cons
You are a therapist, a healer and derive satisfaction from helping people solve everyday or even chronic problems
This is a safe method of healing and does not require any drugs
Your practise rests entirely on belief in life after death. You might not be taken seriously by lots of people
Still at a nascent stage – not many people know about this threapy
It’s safe, sans drugs
No other therapy takes you back to the past to heal, says a practitioner
Is there a need in these times for PLR therapists?
Yes, there is a huge need because it addresses the root causes of many ailments, which are sometimes missed out in traditional methods that are incapable of unearthing problems carried forward from a previous lifetime. Further, the method is safe, does not require any drugs and is much faster than the usual traditional methods. It does not require the client to be in therapy for years and then become dependent on drugs or the doctor as may happen in some other practices. However, it’s still in a nascent stage in India, unlike in the West and so people getting into the profession today will be well poised to catch the tide as it turns.
What kind of mindset should a PLR therapist have?
He or she should have the desire to help and be of service to people who are troubled by mental, emotional, physical or spiritual issues.
A belief in past life is a must, right?
For the client, this belief is not a must for the therapy to be effective. For the PLR therapist I suppose someone who does not believe in reincarnation will not get into it.
Are you absolutely convinced about the rebirth theory? Why?
Yes I am. Why? You will have to experience it for yourself. I cannot transfer belief in any way.
Gurpreet Singh Interviewed by Ayesha Banerjee