Past Life Therapy Center®
Traditional Therapy vs. Past Life Therapy approach For A Man Suffering With Chronic Migraine Headaches
By Netherton, M. Past Lives Therapy. New York: William Morrow and Company, 1978.
I. Here are examples for approaching a client named John, whose family doctor has recommended therapy for his stress and migraine headaches:
A traditional therapist would gather information about John's lifestyle to formulate a solution to eliminate stress. The therapist listens empathetically, and recognizes why John may have excessive stress currently. John is working full-time and is also taking night classes. John is also a new father of a baby boy. John and the therapist both agree that this is a difficult schedule, and John agrees to eliminate something to create more balance. Ultimately John is going to school so he can get a better paying job. John decides to quit coaching soccer, which enables him to take a Saturday class so that he can have a few extra evening nights during the week with his family. John's schedule becomes more flexible and less stressful, but he still has the migraine headaches.
After hearing John's circumstances, traditional therapies or an unskilled hypnotherapist not using the Netherton method or a similar method, would ask John to sit in a comfortable position and may say, "You are sinking into a comfortable place where there is no pain...your body is feeling heavy as you feel yourself drifting into a calm, sleep state." He then will observe John for physical signs of hypnosis; when his affect is flat, he continues with suggestions and cues such as: "You will feel total peace and physical well-being...focus into each part of your body and allow all pain and stress to drain away, leaving your entire body feeling healthy and rejuvenated. When I count from one to ten, you will awake without stress and pain-free."
The client opens his eyes and feels a relief from the pain, which pleases him and frees him to pursue his life goals. Ten days later his car is struck from behind by another car, and a whiplash reinstates the headaches. (Since the source of the migraines was not resolved, the mind longs to complete the past life trauma by reactivating it or re-stimulating the original shock by attracting a new one to put the client back into the experience.)
Non-directive hypnosis or Past Life Therapy utilizing the Netherton Method, addresses the client's issues by uncovering and resolving the pre-existing altered state in which the root-cause of chronic pain is part of a negative survival pattern. This pattern must be eliminated prior to gaining access to positive suggestibility (traditional therapy or traditional hypnotherapy). Affirmations that don't resonate with one's unconscious do not work. One's unconscious mind must believe it is ok to be pain-free to truly be pain-free. You will not be pain-free if you have an unconscious survival pattern that reads: "If I stop feeling pain, it means I will be dead."
Past Life Therapist: "Your pain is contained in a past experience in which an altered state exists. You've already re-entered this past-altered state and now can fully re-experience and resolve its events. Tell me the first thing that starts this process....the first thing you hear, see, or feel."
Client/John: "I'm using a big blade to cut wheat in a big open field. It's very hot and we're all working very hard. We've got to get the wheat harvested before the rain begins or there won't be enough for everyone to eat. I have a wife and a new baby back in the village. I have to work so we can eat. Suddenly, I feel the ground shaking and hear people screaming as they run toward me. Behind them are men on horses, galloping and swinging clubs and swords at them. I'm running with the others, trying desperately to hide from the horsemen. I can feel the horses' hooves, but I keep running to stay ahead of them."
(John shows signs of panic in his breathing as he continues to describe his efforts to reach his family in the village. Suddenly, his head slams forward as he reacts to a blow from behind.)
"My head is damaged by the blow, and I am in such pain I can hardly see. I'm on the ground almost unconscious with excruciating pain from my head through my body. I am struggling to get up and continue to the village to get my wife and child. I'm stumbling and crawling along the ground. I'm desperate to stay alive until I reach my family. I'm losing all awareness of everything, but the pain in my head. I'm using the pain to push me to run. As long as I feel pain, I can still run and defend my family. As long as my head hurts, I'm alive and can keep on going. Keep the pain in my head! Keep the pain in my head! Now, I'm falling and can't move. The pain is fading. I'm dying. I'll never see my wife and son again."
As death takes away physical life, it creates pain as a part of a negative pattern for survival. Once dead, the two feeling states are formed:
1. Pain= "I'm alive" 2. Free of Pain= "I'm dead"
By clearing the past-life death and the negative survival pattern, John was able to live his life without any more migraine headaches.
Case Study II. Netherton, Morris. Past Lives Therapy. New York: William Morrow and Company, 1978.
II. From Chapter 10 of Past Lives Therapy: MIGRAINES
HARRISON LASK DECIDED ONE DAY TO GIVE UP EVERYTHING. He left his wife, his nine-month old son, and his growing optometry practice, telling everyone that he could no longer cope. He did seem aware that these actions constituted some kind of breakdown, and he came to me eagerly when his physician referred him.
At our first interview he described his inability to cope with his work, and particularly with the controls of the State Optical Association. He felt constantly belittled. At home he found himself vying with his baby boy for his wife’s affections; he recognized the sickness in this jealousy. The situation seemed complex, but when I asked him what single symptom he would most like to change, he had a simple answer.
“The headaches,” he replied.
I looked over my notes. He had not mentioned headaches.
“I have headaches. Every morning. I wake up with them at about dawn. If I take something with caffeine – a cold tablet, or a lot of coffee – it stays under control. Otherwise it becomes a migraine. I vomit; I wrap my head in towels. Nothing helps.”
For the sufferer of frequent, regular migraine headaches, life can indeed become intolerable. Living with constant pain has a profound effect on our ability to handle normal everyday situations. Perhaps Harrison’s migraines were the source of all of his problems; they were definitely obscuring whatever other problems he had. They had to be attacked. I asked him to describe his headache.
“Let the unconscious mind go back,” I told him, “to the period just before waking and, as you’re waking, give me the very first thing you’re seeing, feeling, thinking.....”
“I have a headache. I always have a headache. But I’ve got to get up anyhow. I’ve got to get up and take something for it.”
Using these phrases we discovered the following:
“I have a headache.” It’s my mother saying it. She must be.....seven, I think seven moths pregnant with me. My father rolls over and says, “You always have a headache. Get up and fix breakfast.” She’s telling him it’s worse. Now she’s afraid. She’s not supposed to get him up this early. He says, “Well, you’ve given me a headache for years.” She doesn’t know what to do. She’s getting out of bed and going to the kitchen. Pouring coffee first. She’s thinking, “This will make it better.”
Recall that the fetus experiences the mother’s emotions as its own. Harrison’s mother craved caffeine in the morning to cure her headache. Harrison unconsciously took on that pattern, and associated it with domestic instability. This incident is a model for marital alienation, two people failing to cope with each other or their unhappiness.
He moved back from the prenatal period, using the pain in the head as a stimulus. Three similar scenes evolved in rapid succession.
It’s dawn. There’s something.....wrong or illegal going on here, I’m not sure what. I’m in the woods, with an Indian girl. We’re making love. I think I’ve done this for a long time.....every morning or something.....I’m very close to her, even though we speak different languages. It’s a very close relationship.....I’m very wrapped up in what we’re doing, but I know there’s something wrong. She gasps. There are Indians all around. I can’t believe it. So quiet. They’ve surrounded us. I don’t put up a fight. The most decorated one moves toward me. He’s dropping a leather thing around my forehead. It has a stick you can twist and tighten. A band of pain, especially in the front, it just gets tighter and tighter. I’m watching my.....Indian girl. She’s resigned, though, she doesn’t move. I love her, but it gets mixed up with the pain. This brave tells me....he speaks perfect English.....”This is what happens to men like you.....who take our women.” ....Tighter and tighter, all I want to do is pass out. Just let me go, let me go. A snap! Snap! My skull. There’s just a moment of blinding light. Then nothing. I’m not there anymore.
Now there’s a rope around my neck and the thing around my forehead.....it’s metal. This is different. I’m.....I’m an Indian, and they’re white. There’s a metal band around my head that’s somehow.....it’s attached to the ropes that have me tied. Every movement I make tightens it. I’m in a crouch.....there’s nothing I can do. This fat man, he waves to me, “That’s what you get for stealing our buffalo.” He and the other men walk away.....I’m left alone. The buffalo belong to everyone. What does he mean, “their buffalo”? My God, it hurts. There’s.....a whistle. This must be.....I’m on a railroad track. They’ve left me on a railroad track. I’m not tied to the tracks.....but I can’t move. Every move just makes my head hurt more. Oh, Christ, here it comes. The cow-catcher.....the noise.....I’m thrown in the air. Into the engine.....head first.....I’m floating upward now, there’s no pain. I’m not in my body. I can see what’s left of the body. It’s all below.
Now I’m running. A man is chasing me. I’m fifteen. Still in the woods, running, out of breath. I’m coming through this.....small stand of trees, and he’s there. A man on a horse. He’s the one I’ve been running away from. He got ahead of me. He’s very placid. I’m gasping for breath. He’s got a shotgun, or rifle or something, but he doesn’t seem excited. He says, “I’ll teach you to run around with my daughter,” The barrel comes up and a white light comes out. There’s a roaring in my head. He’s shot me in the head. That’s all. A roaring. Then nothing.
Aside from the superficial similarity of these scenes, the Indians, the woods, and even the torture bands in the first two, the most significant link here is that all three scenes involve the extreme head pain being accompanied by a “lesson” of some sort. These “lessons” involve love, growing up, and commerce (ownership of the buffalo). In each case, failure to cope with these “lessons” resulted in an excruciating headache and death. Harrison realized this link himself, and said at the end of the session that he had felt the headaches actually “pull away” from him as he experienced the three scenes.
We both knew that these three scenes were crucial. Harrison’s inability to cope with the realities of a life in business and marriage was a direct result of the input from these three “lessons.” His current headaches were a replay of the headaches caused by punishment long ago. Harrison felt at the end of this session that his headaches were gone forever, but I thought this was overly optimistic. I was hoping for some improvement. What I got instead was an alteration. By the next session Harrison’s pain had moved from the morning to the afternoon, and from the front of his head to the back. The headaches had not, however, disappeared as he expected they would. Using his description of these “new” headaches to move Harrison back in time, we soon came upon yet another Indian scene. Harrison was one of two men directly below the chief. He and his rival for the chief’s favor were arguing the merits of launching an attack on a nearby white settlement.
The tribe is watching, and I know they sympathize with him. Everyone wants to make war but me. I can see that they are eyeing me.....suspicious, but I have no choice. I believe it’s wrong. I can’t participate.
The chief is coming to me now. I’m in a tent, smoking. He says, “Where do you get these ideas.....to make peace with the white man?” I don’t know what to answer him. It’s the same thing over and over again. I just can’t do what other people do. He says, “You’re probably right. But we must go, that is my decision. It is what my people want.” I have to tell him I’m staying here. He nods. We understand.....we’re both doing what we have to do.
The attack took place while Harrison stayed behind, sitting in his tent contemplating. The Indians were routed. The chief did not return. Harrison and his rival were given no choice, by custom, but to fight for the chief’s position.
We’re on horses. I’ve heard about this – these challenges. But it’s different than being in battle. We’re sizing each other up. I feel ambivalent about this. He’s charging at me, slashing at me, past me.....I’m off balance now, but I stay mounted.....I feel blood running into my eye. He’s slashed my head open.....across the forehead, I guess. I can picture what it must look like but I can’t see it. I can just feel the blood. He’s coming again now. He’ll kill me. He’ll kill me. These things happen so fast. I see the chance. I don’t know how I know to do it, but I’ve leapt off the horse – leapt right at him. Knock him over backwards. Both of us on the ground now. There’s a rock in my hand. One I stumbled on. I just found it in my hand. I’m hitting him. Over and over. He’s not fighting back now. I’ve killed him. It’s all so fleeting. I didn’t know what I was doing. I just killed him. Like an animal. But he’s not dead yet. He’s sort of half dead. It’s very.....mysterious. He looks up at me without malice....again, he knows that this is part of what we must do.....tribal custom.....the way we have always lived. I don’t think I can stand it.
Harrison’s description of the tribal situation brought to mind his difficulties with the State Optical Association, which was, I knew, a clubby group with an elaborate social structure to accompany its code of ethics.
The burial ritual is beginning now.....Someone has brought me a cool leaf – a broad, wet green leaf to put on my head. I can hear the drumming. I’m sitting on a rock by the river, thinking how I am going to talk to them. As a preacher of peace who has just committed murder. What can I possibly tell them? Mmh.....A rock or.....I’m falling.....the world’s spinning.....someone hit me from behind, on the back of the head with a rock, or.....I don’t know what.....the pain.....the pain. I’ve fallen in the river. It’s his supporters.....two of them. I can see them as I go in. I’m going to drown now, I know it.
I can see the moonlight hit the water and break up on the ripples. My mouth is full of water.....I’m drowning now. All I’m aware of is the light, the water, and the pain. My head hurts.
These three symptoms took Harrison to his birth into this life.
The light.....it’s a flashlight.....the doctor’s got it inside.....I can feel the pressure on all sides.....He’s saying, “It looks like his head’s in the right place. Dammit, he’s getting stuck in there.”
Harrison described the insertion of a metal retractor, which struck him at the base of his skull. The sudden cold impact shot through him.
It’s like a shiver runs through me, but I don’t think I’m actually shaking.....it just feels like the same thing. He’s got this metal things against my head.....and he’s saying, “He’s stuck.....what’d I tell you.” Now he’s putting his finger in my mouth.....I’m suffocating.....or drowning. He’s pulling. Pulling.....and I’m out. The light’s glaring everywhere. I’m.....I think I’m starting to breathe now. It’s very confusing.....it’s a relief, though.
The finger in the mouth, the flashlight, and the cold metal striking Harrison’s skull from behind mirrored his death in the river. Before Harrison returned to full consciousness, he said, as he had at his first session, that he felt the pain in his head recede, and that a new “clarity” seemed to come over him. By the time of his third session his headaches had become bi-weekly, and by the fourth they were gone entirely.
Harrison’s headaches were the only symptom we attacked during the course of his therapy. He remained unwilling to cope with highly organized groups. He resigned from the State Optical Association and could never return to his optometry practice. He preferred to live the way he was rather than ferret out every symptom in his behavior pattern. His marriage concerned him far more than his career, and the absence of head pain allowed him to concentrate on putting it back in shape.
Past Lives Therapy, as I have said before, is oriented toward eliminating specific symptoms one at a time. I have had patients return to me long after initial treatment, ready to work on some aspect of their behavior that had been ignored or unrecognized during the initial work. I would not be surprised to see Harrison Lask back in my office one day, but perhaps I will not. If he is able to lead a satisfying life without changing his behavioral patterns then it is his responsibility to himself to do so.
Schedule an Appointment
Therapy sessions can be scheduled by contacting Thomas Paul, Master Clinical Past Life Therapist and founder of Past Life Therapy Center. PLTC has its primary office in Los Angeles, CA and Thomas Paul, C.Ht., can be retained worldwide for week-long intensives. You may also want to inquire about phone sessions eligibility. The PLTC/Netherton-Paul Method of Past Life Therapy and De-Hypnosis is available exclusively at Past Life Therapy Center®.
If you know someone that may be interested in Past Life Therapy, please forward this article or refer-a-friend to PLTC's website.
In compliance with state and federal laws, PLTC does not claim to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure diseases. PLTC provides alternative/healing arts therapy that encourages emotional resolution of current challenges at their unconscious sources; this may include past lives, prenatal/birth experiences, present-life traumas, surgeries, etc. Information contained in this article has not been evaluated by the FDA or any psychological or medical licensing body. Written approval was received to anonymously publish this article/case study for educational purposes.
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