"These dreams that sleep when I close my eyes…
every second of the night I live another life…"
- (lyrics from a popular song)
"To Sleep, Perchance to Dream"
One of the tragedies of modern life is that sleep is often regarded as unproductive
down time… an annoying habit that cannot be broken. Since sleep cannot be avoided,
it is often minimized, to "get it over with" and to get on with life. And yet, from
a spiritual standpoint, sleep is incredibly productive.
For while our body sleeps and our mind rests, they and "we" are put in
touch with the healing and regulating currents of the universe. It is the longest
part of the day that we - all of us - spend in touch with the inner worlds of God.
If you think nothing happens while we are sleeping, why is it that we can
go to sleep upset about a problem and wake up feeling better about it?
Nothing in our situation has changed… so if nothing had gone on while sleeping,
how could this happen? Yet, it is dreams that are the real evidence "something is
going on" while we sleep. And part of what dreams are used for is to work through
past life karma.
Dreams and the Burn Off of Past Life Karma
How it works is that - relative to the working through
of karma - there is no difference between what is "real" (happening in waking
life on the physical plane) and what is "imagined" (happening in sleeping life
in the inner worlds of God). As long as you can feel it, whether in a dream or
in "real" life, you can heal it.
Why it happens depends on your level of spiritual evolution.
If you are "just getting into" greater awareness of spirituality,
then "karmic dreams" are a safe way of introducing you to the greater totality of
yourself… to your past lives. In other words, you can relive a traumatic past life
event even if your "waking" belief system does not support belief in the "reality"
of past lives.
If you are "already on the path", then "karmic dreams" are
a more harmonious way to work off karma. In other words, if you have past life "robbery"
karma to work off, then experiencing getting your house vandalized in the dream state… is
much less disruptive to your life in the future than if it had "actually" happened
to you in "real life" (ie. healing a broken house, etc).
Remember that karma is more about teaching than punishing… and, if you can
learn lessons less painfully in the dream state, that is the surest sign of the
working of a loving and compassionate universe.
So here is how to tell if your dream has "past life origins"...
#1: PAST LIFE DREAMS HAVE HISTORICAL DETAIL
Regardless of your level of spiritual advancement, the primary
purpose of your dreams is to give you "coaching" about your life now.
Therefore, most dreams will be filled with people, places, and things that are
familiar to you in your life today.
When you find yourself dreaming about
"historical" people, places, and things that is the surest sign you are in the
process of tapping into your past lives. In other words, if you find yourself
dressed in "period clothing" or in "historical settings", or if
you see yourself living through "significant events" from times that could only
have been experienced in past lives… you are having a "karmic dream".
Most often, the strongest indicator of "karmic dreams" are when we see
ourselves as "other than" we are today. Meaning that in dreams we see someone who
"we know to be ourselves" that is clearly of the opposite gender or from a different
race, religion, ethnic group, nation, etc than we are today.
#2: PAST LIFE DREAMS HAVE UNCHANGING EVENTS
In our dreaming life, just as in waking life, we are "in charge"
of what goes on there. If we do not like what happens, all we need to do is simply
decide that we want to change it and it will transform in response to our wishes.
Yet, in "karmic dreams", especially those that are recurring nightmares, we are not
able to change the sequences of events no matter how hard we try. Just as the events
in the past life cannot be changed, neither can the replay of those events in the
dream state be changed. Those events will just replay again in dreaming
life until they get our attention and cause us to take action on them in waking life.
Often recurring nightmares start out as recurring dreams… and if we had taken
care of the recurring dream by exploring and healing it, then it would not have turned
into a nightmare. Nightmares are usually a last ditch effort to get the person to heal
their life before the problems manifest into "physical, waking reality" where they can
be no longer denied (see "Discovering Past Lives
#3: PAST LIFE DREAMS HAVE A SEQUENCE OF EVENTS
"Regular" dreams are meant to give the individual
a variety of experiences in the inner worlds. Often this means that "dream events"
happen rapidly and in a seemingly random, chaotic order. This is designed to bypass
our linear, logical minds which are barriers to our pure experience from the source.
Meaning that because our minds cannot keep up or make sense of what happens in the
dream state, they stop filtering the "dream garbage" and let it flow through uninterrupted.
Yet, in "karmic dreams", our minds do register the logical sequence of events
in our dreams but are unable to alter them because they are replays of past events…
and not current creations of our egos. The struggle that our minds undergo in the
effort to "clean up karmic dreams" is often what brings them to our attention. They
tend to "stand out" relative to the normal stream of dreams that are quickly
Since "karmic dreams" are designed to bring unhealed past life issues to
the forefront of our awareness, this is a good thing... especially if we
have requested a change in the circumstances of our present life that to happen require
healing of "past life blocks" (see "How
I Discovered My Work Through Dreams").
#4: PAST LIFE DREAMS ARE OUTSIDE OF OUR LEARNING
"Karmic dreams" especially attract our attention, if inside them,
our "past life personality" displays learning, talents, skills, and abilities that
we have not acquired in our life now. In other words, in a "karmic dream" we might
have the ability to speak and understand a foreign language we do not know now.
in dreams, we may understand complex medical procedures but, in waking life, we are
not trained as doctors. Or, in dreams, we may have detailed knowledge of the law but,
in waking life, we are not trained as attorneys. Or, in dreams, we have artistic
talents that we lack in "real life".
One of the surest signs of a "karmic dream" is, once we have had one, we
begin to spontaneously use those dreamed talents in our waking lives. In fact,
when we "just know how" to do things we have never been formally taught, we are
"remembering" what we have already learned in one or more past lives. If we have
already studied and mastered a talent it is ours. If you wish to reconnect
with previously learned skills from past lives, try the
"Unleashing Past Life Talents" exercise.
#5: PAST LIFE DREAMS ARE OUTSIDE OF OUR EXPERIENCE
Throughout our journey through the universe, we will be all things -
saint and sinner, hero and villain, good and evil - so that we can gain a complete
understanding or life. Often, "karmic dreams" will try to show us the past life
"shadow side" of our present life selves. In other words, past lives where we racked
up "bad karma".
For example, if our house was robbed, we might have a
"karmic dream" showing us a past life where we "made our living" by thievery. Or if we
are "powerless" now, we might dream of past lives of abusing power which created our life now.
In another example, a very talented, energetic African American woman had
found herself repeatedly drawn into situations where others "put
her down" and were constantly using "racial slurs" against her. She wanted to know
why this seemed to follow her no matter where she went. So one night in a "karmic
dream", she was shown a past life in the South where she had been a slave owner.
Although she had not been physically cruel to those slaves she "owned", she had been
very verbally abusive… and now she was experiencing the other side of the coin
in this lifetime.
#6: PAST LIFE DREAMS CORRESPOND TO STRANGE BELIEFS
Strange beliefs and thoughts are very often carryovers of disempowering
behavior patterns from previous lives. "Karmic dreams" often work to reveal how past
life tragedies have carried over and have created our present day beliefs… beliefs
which may seem strange now but made "perfect sense" to us in the past. There are many
such belief systems which are quite recognizable in modern day life.
For example, the "I gotta live hard because I'm gonna die young" syndrome is
a belief system carried over from past lives cut short by unexpected illness or
tragedy as a present day defense mechanism. The "push it to the edge extreme risk
taking" syndrome is also a belief system often carried over from past lives as mercenaries
who lived for the action packed thrills of a dangerous "short but sweet" life. The
"I am just an abuse magnet" is a thoughtform carried over from many past lives as a battered
spouse that only serves to attract abusive partners into the present lifetime.
#7: PAST LIFE DREAMS EXPLAIN UNUSUAL BEHAVIORS
It is a maxim of psychology that "all behavior makes sense on the
inside". So when the origins of unusual behaviors or attitudes are sought, an
explanation is usually traceable back to some childhood experience. Yet if the
answer is not to be found there, then the "psychological archeaology" needs to be
extended to look for the answer in one of more past lives. Often, the explanations
for unusual behaviors or attitudes in the present life are revealed by "karmic dreams" about past lives.
For example, I always have to sit along the aisle in a movie theatre (I
cannot sit anywhere else without experiencing extreme discomfort). This phobia
resulted from one past life where I was burned to death in a theatre. I died because
I had been sitting in the center seat and could not get out in time. My body
"remembered" that trauma (burning to death is THE WORST way to go) and was protecting
me by making sure it would not happen again. Since this death was so painful, I was
shown the origin of this otherwise "inexplicable habit" inside a "karmic dream".
This was a relief because I could at least explain myself to my long suffering family!
#8: PAST LIFE DREAMS CORRESPOND TO STRANGE HABITS
"Strange" habits and manners are those which are "out of place"
or "out of character" considering how a particular individual usually acts. Often
the individual is able to recognize the inconsistency without being able to explain
to themselves or others why they always act as strangely as they do. And yet the
answer may be revealed to them inside a "karmic dream" from their past lives.
For example, a woman who otherwise liked to wear the most revealing clothes
was always careful to wear a scarf around her neck. She felt very nervous in taking
it off no matter how uncomfortable and hot it got. Then this woman had a "karmic dream"
where she has been branded with a convict's mark that had been burned into her flesh.
With help from friends, she had escaped being hung but always had to wear a scarf
around her neck to hide her guilty secret.
Later in that life, the convict's mark
was discovered on her and she was executed in a very painful manner. Once she had a
"karmic dream" and understood the origin of her need to wear scarves, she no longer
had to wear them… unless she decided to do so and was choosing to wear scarves out
of fashion and not fear.
#9: PAST LIFE DREAMS SHOW ORIGINS OF PHYSICAL ISSUES
Birthmarks would be marks appearing on infants - that
were not caused during delivery - are often indicative of past life wounds.
Ian Stevenson, reincarnation
researcher, notes that where "a deceased person (past life) was identified and the
details of whose (past) life unmistakably matched the child's (present life) statements,
a close correspondence was nearly always found between the birthmarks on the (present)
child and the wounds on the (past) deceased person."
How those birthmarks were created are often revealed inside "karmic dreams".
For example, a woman with a birthmark in the shape of a stylized letter dreamed about
being branded as a slave. In the dream, she saw the same stylized letter on the end
of a branding iron before it was seared into her flesh in that past life… in the exact
same spot where the present life birthmark was located.
#10: PAST LIFE DREAMS SHOW ORIGINS OF EMOTIONAL ISSUES
The origins of highly charged sexual functioning (like sexual
functioning) and the root causes of sexual dysfunctions (like male impotence or
female frigidity) are often deeply rooted in past lives.
Take this example of "karmic daydreaming" as recounted by a woman in Nancy
Friday's book "Forbidden Flowers".
"I had slipped into my fantasy and actually became
that slave girl I had fantasized about… It was as though I had been transported back
across the ages to ancient Rome…"The woman goes onto recount how her past life fantasy
became her present day reality when she was briefly sexually "enslaved" for a period of
time by strangers in the same manner she had always dreamed about. Yet her abductors
were not true strangers in the karmic sense: they were old "friends" from a Roman past
life returned to relive a highly pleasurable past life sexual encounter.
#11: PAST LIFE DREAMS SHOW ORIGINS OF MENTAL ISSUES
Poverty or prosperity consciousness is usually deeply rooted in
past lives. Money habits are often the most persistent - and hardest to change -
in any lifetime. That is because if you have a relationship with nothing else in the
physical world, you will have a relationship with money. Since money is everywhere
you want to be, past lives usually have strongly dominated your attitudes toward it.
Worse, because you might have died traumatically because of money or the lack of it,
disempowering attitudes toward it will most likely require patient and persistent
healing to "correct".
For example, a client who died in the Black Plague was a compulsive spender
in this life because they were continuing to live as if there were "no tomorrow".
Before that past life block was cleared with the help of a "karmic dream", their
"eat, drink, and be merry" attitude ruined their credit in this life.
#12: PAST LIFE DREAMS SHOW ORIGINS OF SPIRITUAL ISSUES
The weight of tragedies from many past lives can manifest in the
present as the "everything is just fine in my life so why is it that I just can't
be happy?" syndrome. If nothing from your life now can account for your present
depression/anxiety, it may well be coming from the past. Often "karmic dreams" will
hold the clues to why, try as one might, a person just cannot be happy.
For example, for as long as one client could remember, they found themselves
being periodically overcome by bouts of uncontrollable weeping. There was no pattern
to the weeping except one… they only cried when they were alone or when others would
have no chance of discovering it.
As the cycle of crying got worse, the client prayed
constantly to be shown the true source of their grief. Then one night, the client
had a "karmic dream" where they say themselves dying and leaving a much loved spouse
behind… and they knew it was past life tears that they had been crying all along.
And it was this "karmic dream" that set them on a long path of healing this very