Sometimes it may seem like we have “drawn the short straw” in life. It may seem like the events of our lives are being done to us. We curse our “bad luck.” Why do these things always happen to me? We mutter. Yet we wouldn’t worry about the vicissitudes of life if we could see them for what they really are. How can we see our problems differently? My friends know that I get inspiration from a type of deep trance called “LBL Hypnotherapy.” This approach has brought me a comforting sense of perspective about our existence here—most importantly, that we reincarnate here on Earth and in fact, we never die.
Of course, we have all heard about reincarnation. Billions of people believe in reincarnation. I did not grow up believing in reincarnation, but I absolutely recognized what I saw under hypnosis. Yet under trance, I realized how normal and logical it is that we should live again and again; in fact, it would be strange if we only had “one shot” at learning life’s lessons. Reincarnation means that we can always come back and try again with another human identity—and that is very reassuring news.
After each of my lives, I saw myself return to a place of wonder and peace (which I call the “True World” in my book) where we prepare for our next life. In that tranquil place of purity, I saw myself choosing each new life in order to learn important lessons—especially, that we should love other people. To return to the original idea here, I was shown how wrong we are to complain about our “problems” in life. In fact, we are not the victims of our lives—we are the active designers of them! We are not only the actors in our movie—we are the co-directors of it.
Designers of our Lives
We chose this life. And through our many incarnations, we have chosen many bodies to live in. By choosing this body for this life, we have chosen every problem we face here—and all for a perfectly simple reason: we are here to learn.
Our life is a learning game. The main reason why the world’s injustices shouldn’t make us angry is this: the whole point of them is to provoke us to see if we will get angry! Life’s challenges are an obstacle course meant to teach us. It is a learning process, but at least it is our learning process. As the Course in Miracles would say, it is our dream. The dream is a test being continuously projected into our awareness, to gauge our allegiance to the things of the world, and our willingness to overcome them.
All our human senses reinforce the importance of the world, and the barriers we think we need to put up to protect us from other people here (not realizing that they are only innocent fellow actors in our movie). The point of spiritual practice is to break out of this mental loop; to step off the merry-go-round; to refuse to rise to the ego’s bait when it is offered, and to overlook all offenses, in that glorious culmination of human expression we call “forgiveness.” The Course in Miracles would say that forgiveness provides the closest approximation of Heaven’s Love on this planet, a love that is unique because it is shared by all.
This life is only one in our long pathway to revelation. Behind the scenes, we are immortal and all-knowing, and we have no needs, living in a boundless expression of infinite joy, in the blinding light of pure knowing. Planet Earth and its issues simply aren’t where we should be focused—we should only think about the love that unites us all. To sense this love is to begin to accept that we are all secretly unified as One. Behind the scenes, we are pure and innocent, steeped in the truth that binds all existence in the pure divine essence of Oneness.
We ought to know that we are advancing towards our glorious and inescapable reunion with Love with every incarnation here. In addition, as LBL hypnotherapy teaches us, we simultaneously experience every life from the perspective of Heaven as well as Earth, so we should be quietly confident that there is nowhere to go and nothing to do, because we always have one foot in Paradise.
After every life, back in base camp, we reunite with the timeless knowledge that is hidden from our earth-awareness, and we remember why we deliberately and purposefully chose this life on this planet. We aren’t here accidentally, through some random fluke of biology. We are here because we want to be here—to learn about love. Life is a remedial “traffic school of love,” and we selected the exact curriculum, in order to get our celestial driver’s license back.
What we call our problems are merely learning opportunities, true-or-false tests we can take over and over again, as long as we need to. This is a school that we can never flunk out of—a school where we learn that there is no scarcity, and the only product worth having (love) multiplies magically the more it is given away. A happy outcome is always 100% sure, as the Course in Miracles would say. We are all coming home.
Hypnotherapist and author Dr. Michael Newton showed, through his past-life and LBL research, that difficult lives on Earth impart the most profound lessons to the incarnating soul. Even the people with the most severe worldly “problems” have merely chosen these hurdles for their growth potential. Therefore, we shouldn’t pity people with disabilities (such as my own father), or people enduring famine, war, and disease. Neither should we idolize or envy those with more pieces of colored paper (which they call money), or those “blessed” with sports cars or pretty faces. Our bodies are only temporary identities, and our reward in Heaven is assured no matter what—although everyone has chosen a slightly different curriculum of love-training.
We are all just briefly passing through, and although we have all chosen different lives here, we are all in the exact same boat, learning the exact same thing: to accept our shared interests and the divine Love that unites us all.
A Course in Miracles
A Course in Miracles (the “Course”) has been a great inspiration to me over the years. This remarkable book and self-study course maintains a philosophy that is totally consistent with what I saw under hypnosis: that we are already saved, and that the best way to hasten our return home is through forgiveness of other people.
The Course would question Newton’s reincarnation-based view of our experience of the world. In the Course, the world itself is a hologram. Far from physically experiencing these tough lives here, each of us is simply putting a new DVD into the machine and watching another virtual reality video segment, courtesy of our ego. The world is a projection in the Course’s view, and we are the watchers of its dream-sequences.
Yet should our response be any different in practice? Of course not. However we see our lives, our goal here is absolutely the same: to learn how to love, through the miracle of forgiveness. As long as our bad dreams of separation, guilt, and competition are still lodged in our mind, we will remain too paranoid and delusional to accept our destiny and let go. Distracted by petty grievances, we ignore the accessible ecstasy of Paradise, which is ours for the taking every moment of our lives. Peace is a changeless place we never truly left, and thus can instantly rediscover. Since there is no time, there is no time “limit;” no worry or distress should ever pass through our minds, because our enlightenment is happening now.
We Are Home Free
Very soon, (actually, in the timeless right now) we will perceive correctly that every brother/sister on the planet is one with us in innocence, and cannot be judged. At that point, we will realize that “the war is over,” and rejoin our soul companions—i.e. everyone who has ever lived—in the sanctified Oneness, perfect stillness, and supreme bliss of Heaven. Our enlightenment will appear to happen at a moment in time. But as all minds are joined, and there is no time, it will happen simultaneously, in the continuous present. We never left Heaven, and never will, and we only need a “little willingness” (in the Course’s parlance) to release the fantasy that the world matters, and to accept love as its permanent and infinitely preferable alternative.
Although the Course implies that reincarnation is our reality, it also says that it doesn’t matter if we believe in reincarnation. What matters is realizing that the answer is always available to us, no matter where we are. The only solution is to let go of our judgments right now, and choose love— this applies no matter what challenges we think we are facing. All challenges are the same, since they all force us to choose between fact (our shared innocence) and fiction (the world’s notions of “good” and “bad”).
We can indeed see peace instead of chaos by choosing love—and the word we apply to this choice is “forgiveness.” True forgiveness— a kind of eternally-patient and kind overlooking of the faults and blemishes of the world—is the entire point of the Course in Miracles. We have all experienced the faint echoes of heavenly love, but the closest we can ever get to living that Love on Earth is forgiveness. True forgiveness, when fully accepted, integrated, and interwoven throughout our entire awareness, reminds us that we are all One.
The Myth of Separation
In truth, there are no differences between anyone, because separation is a mythology that we created. We are all the same inside, and all as innocent as the angels. There are no levels or distinctions between us, because everything is interconnected, and time does not exist. No person is different from any other—nor any snowflake, nor tree, nor ocean, nor tiny paramecium, nor enormous Black Hole—none is different from any other. No remote galaxy is farther away from us than our own heart; no event is earlier or later than right now; and no person we have ever known can ever “leave” us.
No particle or continent can be measured by any physical “dimensions,” and thus none can genuinely exist, compared with the monolithic, infinite Unity of Love to which we belong. This is actually very good news, because this Unity—the only Thing that ever existed—is our inheritance. Paradise is ours for the asking, because we are connected to it, and it can never be taken away from us.
The Final Gift
In closing, we all ought to feel a great and equal compassion for all our fellow learners: voyagers who have opted to take a spin with us on this wobbly planet. Every one among us is a (temporarily) lost child, scratching her head, trying to figure out Grand Central Station at rush hour. Yet the child doesn’t realize that there is only one train—and it will only take her home. By smiling through life’s challenges, we can demonstrate to our fellow earthlings that love is the only possible answer and the only possible way.
Love is literarily all there is, and we are only love—because we are the immortal children of the One Source of Love. Love is both the subject and the object in an eternal circle of creation, and as Love beholds Love, our hidden gift of Unity is revealed. Tears of gratitude are the only sane reaction whenever we perceive—albeit briefly at first—the faint flickers of Love’s golden promise in our memory, as we thankfully recognize that We are All One.