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Reincarnation & Past Lives

The Revision of Our Actions on Earth & Karmic Preparation for Our Next Reincarnation

Trutz HardoAn extract from Das große Karma-Handbuch (The Great Handbook of Karma) by Trutz Hardo, one of Germany’s leading regression therapists.

Michael Newton discovered that soul groups usually consists of three to twenty-five members, and this agrees also with my experience. So we can speak of an average size of fifteen members. These groups are composed of souls that we have already known for a long time, and we have met each other often within these groups either in the beyond or in different incarnations on earth. Some of them are very close to us, having possibly already been lovers or close family members. We often offer our assistance to others when they want to learn different lessons in the earthly school - all of which, in the last analysis, have to do with the main subject "Love" and one or a few of its sub-categories.

Every group is equipped with at least one teacher, generally masculine, who discusses very extensively the past life of every member in front of the group. All of the situations on earth in which we have brought love into play or demonstrated lack of love are projected on a kind of screen, so that all present can learn from the events exhibited. Nothing is covered up. And we ourselves become our most brutal critics.

I would like to demonstrate on a minor example how such a group carries out its work:  One member of the group, whose previous life is now being discussed before the group by means of thought projections onto the "screen", discovers himself in a supermarket where he is just getting his change given back by the cashier. Outside he counts it and finds that he has received one bigger bill too many with the change. And now he has a double consciousness: he remembers exactly what he was thinking at that moment and at the same time and he is momentarily ashamed of how he reacted - instead of giving it back, he kept it. Here he got a "negative load" of karma and will likewise have to make up for this mistake by being a victim of theft.

But the film continues: On the same evening the cashier has to present the final balance with the proceeds for the day to her boss. Asked about the missing sum, the cashier turns red in embarrassment, which is interpreted by the boss as a sign that she has stolen the money. He fires her in anger. The next picture: The young woman is at home, where one of her four children has contracted polio and the father is out of work and has turned to drink. Now that she, the only bread-winner in the family, has also lost her job, she sees no way to feed the family, takes in her desperation an overdose of sleeping tablets and dies.

Now his shame is all the greater when he sees all the problems he has caused. He may cry uncontrollably and regret his stupidity a thousand times. Others in the group may also think of similar cases on earth where they misused the situation to the disadvantage of others. And after the connections have been discussed, the same situation will be acted out in role-play, this time demonstrating the proper behavior.

These groups serve then to educate the souls as to the wrong actions by which they have burdened themselves with karma. And they serve to clarify proper behavior and practice. Certainly the "candidate" will meet the same situation in his next life, too. And if he puts the money in his own pocket once more, he again will be confronted in the beyond and in his group with his behavior, until he has passed all tests on earth clearly and without faltering. As mentioned above, our accompanying leaders and teachers have unbelievable patience with us. There are always slow and fast learners. That is true everywhere.

And many souls, whose words and deeds are shown to them again, are ashamed of their egoistic and loveless behavior (as in Case 2) or are happy when they have acted according to the guidelines of love. Not only are the mistakes thoroughly discussed, but also the question of how the "candidate" could have acted properly is extensively delved into. Proper behavior is then acted out in role-plays in which all the members of the group take part enthusiastically. And everyone there is confronted with the law of karma, knows what he has done wrong and is prepared to enter a new incarnation in the "school of suffering and purification" in order to experience the same thing that he has caused others to live through (cf. Case 2).

But this life in the beyond should not be understood as consisting only of constant group training. Besides this, there are many other very pleasant activities to occupy one's time:  spending time in libraries, taking part in certain festivities, occupying oneself with long neglected hobbies, learning to play a musical instrument or taking part in research projects. And one can also invisibly return to earth, perhaps even accompanied by one's teacher while he points out on certain people's behavior. This may be useful either as a learning preparation for one's next reincarnation or for gaining an impression of how and when events planned for this reincarnation will be initiated "from above". But in this case - as an invisible being - one is not allowed to interfere in the thoughts and life of human beings unless there is good reason to do so and it is therefore authorized by higher beings.

It is easy to keep occupied in the beyond because everything is very pleasurable and interesting. Actually we humans on earth should envy our recently deceased relatives for now having ended their work on earth and being allowed to enjoy the pleasures of the beyond again! But this beyond is not only there to allow for relaxation or for investigation of one's previous life. It is also meant as a period of preparation for the coming incarnation, which we will gladly enter as soon as we understand its purpose and its necessity. At a certain point we will see that it is necessary as a testing ground to see if we can also put that what we have learned in the beyond into practice under the much harder conditions of earthly life.

But the most important phase for the arrangement of all events on earth comes just before one's new incarnation. The soul has freedom of choice and is allowed sufficient use of it before entering upon a new life on earth. "Karma itself does not write the manuscript for the next lesson. It only lays down the framework that must be abided by.

We write the curriculum ourselves together with our teachers. But the final responsibility lies always with us, as we have the right to reject any suggestion." Symbolically speaking, we glance at our karmic bank account book and can see there exactly what negative karma we have to balance out for learning reasons and also what lesson we can add on as an "option" in our earthly "schoolroom".

If we are very ambitious and want to balance a lot of the karma from earlier lives, then we will choose a hard life, possibly with many misfortunes and situations where we experience just the treatment ourselves that we have hard-heartedly dealt out to others before. Even the ex-murderer is ready, after his period of repentance and his experience in his soul-group, to recognize the law of karma and accept his karmic lot in a new life. Yes, he will even be happy to grasp the opportunity to erase the earlier misdeed from his account by balancing it out.

From the perspective of the beyond, it is relatively easy to accept even the prospect of a painful coming karmic event, as it still seems rather far away - something like next week's visit to the dentist's. Thus it is rather easy to decide about one's coming fate. And we will use up some of our "bonus points" of good karma from previous lives, too, to avoid having only to suffer one heavy stroke of fate after the other. Because we have the freedom to choose, we can even choose - despite the many things we still have to balance out in our karmic account - to enjoy this time as a relatively peaceful and pleasurable life. Though our guides may point out the possible waste of an opportunity, but it will be allowed to us "on demand". But at that point we are fully conscious of the fact that all the minus points in our account must be balanced out sooner or later, for "no one can escape what he is due to experience for his unrighteous acts".

"The human soul," says Rudolf Steiner, organizes in the beyond "together with those other humans in karmic relationship and with the beings of the upper hierarchies his coming life in respect to karma." Some leave the details of what will meet them to those higher beings that will later initiate the karmic events, while others want to plan them down to the smallest detail themselves. And, as Pythagoras said, as a rule the more advanced souls will plan their future lives themselves, the somewhat less advanced will decide themselves some parts and leave other parts open, whereas the little advanced will leave everything up to their karma guides (called lipika by Indians[from Sanskrit: scribe or clerk]).

But everyone has given their approval to their coming fate before they enter into a new human life. That is required by the law of free will. Because nothing should happen to them on earth against their will. In other words, the fate that we experience on earth is not only determined as karmic reaction from our earlier lives, but is in addition a result of a decision on the basis of personal insight and individual free will.

These details are new within research on karma and cast a new light on the law of karma itself. Because at the point of entering upon a new life on earth we have not only understood the law of karma and accepted its positive value, but we have accepted its practical application, even in the strictest sense, to our own lives. Thus every life on earth is prescribed - either directly or indirectly - and approved ahead of time by us personally. Because we connect with every stroke of fate some concrete aim, a step on the path leading us to "becoming love".

Michael Newton describes the case of a soul that asks to be able to experience in its coming life being raped as a woman, "in order to understand...and estimate the destruction that it had as a man caused the (raped) girl".[82] And we remember the Germanic warrior who had burnt a child with fire set to a hut and wished in the beyond to be killed by burning in its next life (Case 1).

But only the spiritually very advanced will have this higher insight that the actual fundamental reason for painful events is the necessary experience of the opposite of all-harmony and all-love. So only very few are able to recognize this "inner will", as Aurobindo would call it. For the others the validity of the law of karma is a plausible - and therefore sufficient - reason to subject themselves to its sway.

We can also make an agreement with members of our group to learn something together in a new incarnation, i.e. to support and aid each other as friends, spouses, partners, family members or relatives. Most of these agreements are made with the object of learning in the school of life; only seldom are they aimed at pure mutual enjoyment.

For certain reasons it may be advisable for our teachers, leaders or consultants to choose souls from another group for our mission, if there are no suitable souls in our own group. Because it is the new learning mission together with the need for karmic balancing that have priority, other components such as land of birth, parents, birth-date and length of life being of secondary importance.

Elisabeth Kübler-Ross can still remember asking a friend in the beyond - before her present birth - why he had decided to take birth and die of hunger as a child in Africa.

He answered, "Such a life would expand my compassion", explaining that he had lacked compassion for others in his previous life. But not all that which is hard to bear in our lives and which we have chosen explicitly for our new life is necessarily connected to our earlier lives and the karma resulting from them. Edgar Cayce is right to point out that one can also establish a fate for oneself that is karma-free (cf. above: The 23 Kinds of Karma, 22. Karma-free karma). I am therefore free to decide, e.g., to help others by becoming a mongoloid child. I can also wish to be born with a crippled foot, so that I no longer can run after material things as in my last life, but can use this life for intellectual or spiritual purposes. But here at any rate I am the architect of my own world. In this special case causality is established voluntarily and under my own direction. So not every life must have its roots in karma - though almost all do - but it must have its roots in causality planned beforehand.

If a woman experienced in her past life many problems on account of her beauty, she may wish to be unattractive or she may say, "No, I want to be just as beautiful again and prove that I am strong enough to withstand all temptations. For I have just learned here how to act properly and would like to test my ability to put it into practice." Of course this will be allowed - if she sticks to this decision. For her own good, though, her guides will surely try to convince her to "take it easy" and try to gain more experience before she faces such strong temptation again. 

So we take a look at our karma account to see what we have to balance out, but we also take advantage of our bonus points. Another example: wealth. If we want, we can be born rich or become rich. But perhaps we know the danger of money already from an earlier life of our own or from the descriptions of other group members. By having wealth one can easily become entangled in possessions, so that one is not the possessor but the possessed. And one can easily become guilty of hard-hearted actions, which then have to be balanced out again. In contrast to the dreams and wishes of most people on earth, lives in wealth are therefore generally avoided, unless one wants to test his ability to avoid falling into the pit of hard-heartedness.

The period in the beyond before entering into a new incarnation is used for intensive preparation. The coming situations are practiced in role-play, and there may be training for the coming occupation, as we saw in case 2, where the soul of the Russian trader acquired the necessary knowledge in herbs needed for its coming earth life. This explains, for instance, the phenomenon of child prodigies: either they have brought their knowledge with them from other lives or they receive training in the beyond before beginning their next life.

We also choose whether to be born as a man or a woman, depending on what we are planning to balance or learn on earth. As pure spirit we are actually neuter. But once having entered into duality and having accepted a soul in order to experience the opposite of the All-Oneness, we have to choose one of the two sexes for each incarnation. The choice of sex is also up to us and can change from incarnation to incarnation.

But usually an extended program with one sex or the other is chosen. If I need to learn to manage power, then I will usually choose several masculine lives. If, on the contrary, the theme is motherhood, I will need a number of female lives. Because here, too, there is much to learn: I can be the mother of a handicapped child in order to learn to be very loving and kind to my child. I may also learn to be the mother of many children or to be a single mother living in great poverty. And I can also learn a lot if my children die one after the other. But generally these different experiences are spread over several lives. Because each life is filled with many different learning tasks.

The karma planners and consultants make sure, though, that no one takes on more than he can manage in his new earthly life. Therefore Elisabeth Kübler-Ross says with conviction in her speeches, "One never gets more than what one can bear." That means that each burden on earth, even if it seems too heavy from the earthly perspective, is exactly proportioned for the soul that has to carry it and, no matter how big it appears, it never is too much for one to manage. Therefore it should be borne courageously until the end. Anyone who is hesitant and gives up hope, perhaps even taking his own life or becoming a hermit, has no gain, none at all, but only the certain fate of having at some time in the future to repeat the same program from the beginning.

And we can remember that every life must be optimal for us, having been carefully planned down to the smallest detail and the learning tasks having been set - or at least accepted - by ourselves. Whoever hesitates or is disheartened while facing a new life has twice as hard a time going through. The person that approaches the task courageously and unhesitatingly will master it more surely. Therefore: take courage, "become friends" with your karma and enjoy your life! Because we are also the creator of our own lives, and - by living in agreement with our inner commandment of love - we can make them happy ones! If our karma meets us in the form of war, illness, accident or in any other form, we should not despair but take it "by the horns" and do the best we can to master it.

We can also choose our parents. But our karma consultant may say that the chosen parents are completely inadequate for the planned program, e.g. that the father is much too gentle to beat the child as the karmic program requires. Or, if the soul will not change its mind, then it is arranged that the father separates from the mother, who then marries someone else to fill the role of a merciless drillmaster.

Youths up to puberty cannot create karma and then only to a limited amount until they are bodily mature. But even as babies they may be recipients or balancers of karma: if, e.g., I once abused a child, then I must be abused as a child.

If the plan "in which the amount of the punishment and its length has been established" and approved, then the soul "approaches the punishment voluntarily". Plotinus had thus already recognized in Roman time that karma is already prepared, understood and accepted in the beyond, being "the most wonderful of all rooms for sense perception". This is true knowledge that was not re-gained until we learned to do empirical research on the beyond by means of Regression Therapy.

Wars and catastrophes are also planned in detail beforehand for karmic reasons because they offer a good opportunity to provide many people at the same time with the possibility of karmic learning and balancing. The karma of each of those involved is already specifically built in to all wars or natural catastrophes, and they have also been approved or tacitly accepted (i.e. by the karma recipient's having left the details up to his councilors).

And a special boon is given to those ready to reincarnate but just waiting for the proper and fitting karmic slot to be prepared for them. They are allowed to forget what they have experienced in earlier lives, in order to make their passage through the new life as unbiased as possible. Because if one could remember what had taken place in one's former life or in the beyond, one might suffer from self-accusations - e.g. as a previous murderer - and not be able to carry out one's plan in an open manner. Or it might be too easy if one knew the whole life plan including time of death or the agreements already made in the beyond. Therefore, as the great researcher of death Elisabeth Kübler-Ross says, the angel of forgetfulness comes and erases all our memory of the past before we enter into the womb of our new mother.

The hour of death is surely planned already. But eventual changes are already foreseen in the plan, e.g.: "If you finish your 'curriculum' (learning plan) early, you can leave this school of life earlier." Or: "If you have attained all the knowledge you intended to by the time you are seventy, you can still remain as long as you want in order to learn some more or just to enjoy your life a little longer."

But most souls do not want to stay a second longer than necessary on earth. And when I asked Elisabeth Kübler-Ross why it is then that we come to earth in the first place, if everything in the beyond is so nice, she said, "The earth is a school of life. We have to learn in this unpleasant physical zone what we couldn't learn on the other side. Because on the other side we experience unconditional love. How could we learn to love if everything is so rosy? Here we have to learn to get along with nasty and cruel people, with disgusting politics [etc.] in order to experience how to manage negativity. As long as we have not learned this lesson, we have to return again and again to this world, until we have learned it. Therefore we have to return many, many, many times until we have finally attained a level of consciousness where we can understand that we are not separated from each other, but are always and at every moment in union with each other. When we really know that and can live accordingly, then we can die, never to return to earth again."



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ruleScience without religion is lame. Religion without science is blind.” -- Albert Einstein

Keywords: reincarnation, rebirth, karma, pastlife, past life, past lives, life after death, proof of past life, past life regression, reincarnation stories, reincarnation case studies, reincarnation case study

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Trutz Hardo is Germany’s best-known regression therapist and the author of many books, including the ground-breaking Seven-Colour Novel and Children Who Have Lived Before.
Children Who Have Lived Before
Children Who Have Lived Before
by Trutz Hardo

In this book children talk convincingly about their past lives. Subjected to scientific scrutiny and verification, their statements are invariably confirmed in every detail.

"The case for reincarnation moves up a notch in this absorbing, unique title, packed with case histories and reflections on how children's statements were verified." -- Midwest Book Review

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