I sense immediately that we are in a hot part of southern or eastern Europe. I stand next to my client Madelena. We are in a sparsely vegetated area on a rough dirt track. I can tell that she is poor by the stinking rags she wears for clothes. She is now a man, walking beside me in his sweat-stained work clothes, which I suspect are the only clothes he possesses.
He is returning from a day’s hard labour and, from the way he walks, he is exhausted. He carries in his hand a primitive but well honed sickle, its curved blade swinging by his side. It is strange, but despite this desolate poverty, I sense he somehow loves this place. It is very far removed from the comfortable city life my client experiences now.
We are returning to this man’s home as the sun approaches the end of its slow downward arc towards the horizon. Because my client has stepped spontaneously into this full-body, past-life recall I know that it is likely to be a profound and possibly traumatic experience.
I make no attempt to contact the man who is Madelena as he cannot see me. Normally Madelena would be standing next to me witnessing the scene as I am. I would be in telepathic communication with her by now, guiding her through her journey, making suggestions about what she might do next. Today Madelena is a man and she is oblivious to my presence and totally involved with her experience in this distant country, probably in the distant past. As a time traveller visiting this time and place, I am invisible to her, as I am to anyone in this reality. I have no idea what is coming next.
I hear a disturbance as we approach a small settlement. My disheveled companion’s pace quickens as he realises something is amiss. We also smell burning and, mixed with the coarse, brutish shouts of men, I hear the cries of a child and the sobbing of a woman. As we round a small hillock the scene unfolds before us. Still some distance away I see a group of soldiers, some on horseback. They wear an emblem I recognise and I know the time I am in. The soldiers on foot are involved in the timeless war crimes that seem to accompany undisciplined soldiers wherever they go, whatever century they are in.
I feel my own gut tighten as we approach the scene; the soldiers are so involved with their malicious destruction they do not notice the peasant farmer approach. He is enraged. Without hesitation he races into the thick of it, leaping on the back of a soldier trying to rape his wife. He pulls the rapist’s head back and slits his throat with one fluid pass of his razor-sharp sickle, which has become an extension of his sinewy body. Before the soldier even realises what has happened, he is falling to the ground with a surprised and vacant look in his face. Immediately the farmer who is Madelena turns to another nearby soldier who is about to harm a child and completely decapitates him with one explosive strike of his sickle. The peasant farmer has become a wailing, wiry banshee. He is screaming with rage as he hacks into and drops another, then another, of the invading infidels, who are randomly destroying everything he holds dear.
I know this cannot last – he is totally outnumbered and out-equipped. In a moment there is space around him, as those on foot allow the skilled and well practiced armoured horsemen to surround him. It takes a few skillful turns of their mounts and he is impaled on their long lances, which pin him to the dirt. They overcome him easily. His rage and knife are no match for their training and equipment.
The man in charge dismounts. He stands surprisingly short, once he is off his horse, and he walks with a pronounced limp. I can see he is a young man, who in our culture might be a fresh faced university student. He has an intelligence and experience in his eyes that belie his callow looks. I see as he pulls back his chain mail hood that he has a broken nose and a deep and livid scar that crosses his forehead and cheek. He is thin but muscular and looks better fed than the peasant he is confronting. He looks at the farmer as if he is the foulest vermin imaginable.
“You! Non-believer! Prepare to meet your heathen god.” Turning to the soldiers he shouts, “Set fire to that hovel and bring the woman and child over here. This pile of filth can watch them die, before I kill him.”
A leery soldier calls out, protesting, in a thickly accented dialect, that the fun was just beginning. His mates laugh at his impudence.
“Enough! Or you will follow him”, the knight interrupts.
And so my client watches, as the wife and child of the man she is in this past life are put to the sword, while he remains pinned to the ground. I see the look of sadness and love pass between them. Her eyes tell him that this quick death is far better than the lifelong humiliation and defilement by these infidels. I see the spirits of their dead relatives come for them as they are taken home to light, returning to unity consciousness.
Tears well up in the peasant’s eyes as he chokes back his emotions, emotions which I know are being locked into every cell of his being as he approaches his imminent death. With lances passing through his body, pinning him to the ground, he feels his life force slowly ebbing away as he looks up to see this so-called knight standing over him. This knight’s soiled, once-white surcoat, with its symmetrical curved red cross in its centre, flaps in the early evening breeze as he straddles my client. He lifts his heavy broadsword above his head and brings it down with one almighty blow, plunging it to the centre of the peasant’s chest.
“Die, pagan scum.” The knight takes pleasure in the kill as the soldiers turn their backs on the execution, rummaging through the meagre possessions of the farmer, looking for booty and finding nothing worth keeping.
I am ready as Madelena leaves the peasant’s body. She will be confused. I know she may still be feeling the intense physical pain of the past few minutes’ action, but it is the emotional pain which will have scarred her etheric body, scars which will have been affecting her behaviour every lifetime since this event, around 800 years ago.
I must catch her attention and find out exactly what she is feeling, as this will be the key to the lifelong issue she came to explore with me in this shamanic journey. We are about to discover what it is and how it relates to her life as a conservative primary schoolteacher in the 21st century, but first I have to counsel her.
As the peasant’s last gasp eases its way out of his aching lungs I see his spirit rise from his body.
Madelena here! It is me, Raym. I am here. I have been waiting for you. I telepath her.
Madelena’s confusion is apparent as she stares at me blankly.
Wha… Who am I. What am I doing here?
Your name is Madelena Petras. You came to me for a shamanic journey. Your body is in the 21st century. You have just experienced your death in the 11th century. Everything is okay. I am here to help you. I guide her gently away from the scene and into no-time-space.
My wife, my child! She starts sobbing.
They are okay. They have gone home to light. It is you I am concerned about. How do you feel?
I know this sounds like a silly question but I must get to her core issue while it is still raw and present.
A novice healer or a member of the general public might expect her to be feeling intense fear or even to be totally absorbed by the physical pain she has just experienced, but I have been through this process many times and I know that there is more to it. She is still sobbing.
Madelena, it’s okay, everything is okay. Tell me how you feel.
That big bloke just killed me! The sobs are subsiding.
I realise from her perspective, pinned to the ground, the short disabled knight would have appeared much larger than he was.
What did I do to deserve that? Gees, it was a hard life back then, but we were happy. I wasn’t harming anyone. What was that all about? I had no idea his kind were even close. I had heard stories, but just stories, you know.
You are a school teacher you should know.
Yes of course, the Crusades, but I had no idea they were so brutal to ordinary people.
This is part of the Crusades they do not teach at school. They were allowed raids away from the eyes of the lords who controlled them. They were taught that their pagan idolatrous enemy were non-Christian scum and sub-human. They could do whatever they liked, out of sight of their superiors. Some things never change.
Madelena is calmer now.
I want you to get in touch with your feelings at the moment of your death – describe them to me. Anxiety? Sadness?
There is a pause
Nope… intense anger. How dare they do that to me and my family!?, she responds as her present life Greek feistiness comes to the fore.
Now I see clearly the connection with her present life challenge and it is not without irony. She is a devout Christian and a pillar of the local Greek Orthodox church. She has dedicated herself to good local community work and over the past few years has devoted her energies to raising funds for survivors from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, with the emphasis on helping women and children.
She had sought help from other therapists and was referred to me. Her challenge as a primary school teacher was her intense and uncontrollable outbursts of anger which erupted in her classroom, terrifying the children she loved to teach. As she aged, these outbursts were becoming more intense, a sure sign, from my point of view, that the original issue was ready to be released.
From my perspective releasing this anger is simple, but I suspect from where she is now it may not be quite that easy.
Do you see how this trauma is affecting your life now?
Another pause. I know she knows, but is reluctant to admit it.
Are you ready to be free of this trauma and lead a happy, balanced life?
Okay. I want you to call on the spirits of the knight who killed you and the soldiers who abused and killed your wife and child. Say out loud after me… “Across time and space I call on the spirits of the people who killed me and my family. Please stand before me now.” Repeat it three times out loud.
The knights and soldiers step forward, materialising out of the mists of time. They stand before us looking both humbled and remorseful, their heads bowed.
Are you ready to do this?
If it stops me screaming at the kids I love, yes I am.
Then repeat after me, “Across time and space, of my own free will, in full consciousness, as the universe is my witness, I freely forgive you.” Say it out loud please.
She starts this very powerful affirmation but slows down as she gets to the crucial statement.
“…I freely… fff…, fff… I freely fff… F#%k! YOU F@#$!%*# BASTARDS!” she shouts out loud.
For a Christian school teacher, this lady’s language is getting pretty rich. I hope that there are not too many customers in the crystal shop beneath my session room.
You realise that the only way you can be free of this trauma is to forgive the perpetrators with all your heart?
As I say this the knight and his companions kneel before us.
Are you sure?
I know it’s hard, but yes I am sure.
She tries several more times but each time the rage it brings up in her is so intense it prevents her from completing the affirmation.
I am patient, because I know she is on the threshold of a life-transforming breakthrough. I give her the rest of the affirmation so that she really understands where I am leading her:
I forgive you, I forgive you, I forgive you. In forgiving you I release you, as I release myself from this trauma, to find joy peace and freedom. Go in peace. I leave this trauma in the past where it belongs. It no longer affects me. I am free from it, now. So be it.
Finally she summons up the courage to complete the affirmation and she is crying when the final release takes place. The knight and his companions are grateful. They dissolve into unity consciousness, bowing, thanking her for their release and honouring her bravery as they do so.
I take Madelena through the cleansing and healing processes that complete the session and bring her back into her body. We open our eyes, stretch and I pass her a tissue.
“Wow, that was powerful.” She smiles, still crying, knowing full well that her anger management issues have been completely resolved in this one session.
“I don’t know where that language came from – it’s not like me at all”. She looks a little sheepish.
“Of course not. It was just the intensity of the experience”, I respond, taking what she has just told me with just a pinch of Greek sea salt.
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