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The Present Power of Past Lives: The Experts Speak


Hi, Everyone,

I am delighted to announce the publication of my new book,
The Present Power of Past Lives: The Experts Speak.

It is now available on Amazon!

In late 2013, I conducted a series of radio interviews on globally-based VoiceAmerica with experts in the field of past lives, past-life regression, and the expansion of consciousness. Based on those interviews and with additional materials, my book starts with my practices and tips for helping a client achieve a successful past-life regression and finding an appropriate regressionist.

After I interview three of my clients about the healing that past-life regression can provide, I discuss what Karma is and is not. In contrast to a time-bound, cause-and-effect mechanism that tends to focus on what amounts to predetermined punishment for transgressions committed earlier in the present or in a past life, I see a pattern of freely-chosen contracts/choices made with others to try out a different path.

Following the chapter on Karma are ten other chapters devoted to the different contexts in which practitioners have accessed past lives. See the Table of Contents below.

Through the text and Endnotes, I comment on what is presented in the interviews from the point of view of Seth, that “energy personality essence” channeled by Jane Roberts from 1963 to her death in 1984.

Making this perspective even more concrete are the interviews with two of Jane’s ESP students, Rich Kendall and the late Lawrence Davidson, who share what it was like to have Seth comment on several of their own past lives.

This book will appeal greatly to followers of Seth, those interested in the expansion of consciousness, those curious about past lives and related matters, and novice and experienced practitioners of past-life regression.

I hope you will purchase and read the book and, if you like it, write a review of the book on Amazon.


Table of Contents
Preface 13

Introduction 23

Chapter One: The Nature of Past-Life Regression and
Participants’ Stories 37

Chapter Two: Karma: What It Is and Is Not 57

Chapter Three: Past Lives and The Seth Material, Part 1: 70
An interview With Rich Kendall

Chapter Four: Children’s Past Lives: 89
An Interview with Carol Bowman

Chapter Five: Past Lives and Attached Entities: 111
An Interview with Greg McHugh

Chapter Six: Past-Life Regression and Shamanic Journeying: 130
An Interview with Dana Robinson and Shana Robinson

Chapter Seven: Past Lives and Soul Contracts: 151
An Interview with Linda Baker

Chapter Eight: Past-Life Regression for Intact Groups: 169
An Interview with Janet Cunningham

Chapter Nine: Past Lives and Natal Regression: 187
An Interview with Tim Simmerman-Sierra

Chapter Ten: Past-Life Regression to Capture Lost History: 205
An Interview with Joanna Prentis and Stuart Wilson

Chapter Eleven: Edgar Cayce and Past Lives in Atlantis: 225
An Interview with Nancy Eubel

Chapter Twelve: Past Lives and Life-Between-Lives: 241
An Interview with Dee Chips

Chapter Thirteen: Research on the Positive Effects of
Past-Life Regression: 259
An Interview with Heather S. Friedman Rivera

Chapter Fourteen: Past Lives and The Seth Material, Part 2: 275
An Interview with Lawrence Davidson

Postscript 288

Appendix I: Further Tips for Having a Productive Past-Life Regression 291

Appendix II: Grounding Exercises for Spiritual Journeying 295

Appendix III: Comparing Shamanism to Past-Life Regression 303

Appendix IV: Images and Words from Dr. Janet
Cunningham’s Book, A Tribe Returned 318

Bibliography 323

Guest Bios 332

Host and Author Bio 344

Chapter Notes 347



Seekers of expanded consciousness will revel in Dr. Joe Mancini’s compilation of cutting-edge work and key practitioners in the field today. As a talk show host, he takes the reader on a journey into other dimensions that offer new ways not only of healing ourselves, but also of recharging and reconfiguring our minds, hearts, physicality and spirituality. He dares to lead us into our own natal experiences, past lives and life between lives. He explores the Seth Material’s perspective on Karma, time and space and leaves the reader empowered with choice. This is a powerful book for novices and professionals alike!

Barbara Lane, Ph.D., CHt., is a past-life researcher and has regressed thousands (of people). Her work has been featured on TV, radio and in newsprint. (For over a decade, she served as hypnotherapist at George Washington University’s Center for Integrative Medicine in Washington, D.C.) Her most recent book is Celebrity Past-Life Clues: A Closer Look into the Past Lives of 50 Famous People.


This remarkable book, heavily influenced by the Seth material by Jane Roberts, is a must-read for anyone with an interest in the concept of past lives and their influence on the current existence. With a Harvard Ph.D. and other impressive degrees and certificates, including a specialization in Spiritual Hypnotherapy, Dr. Joseph Mancini Jr. has become a unique explorer into the past lives—and the implications of those lives—of many people. In crystalizing the concept through his own knowledge and the expertise of twelve practitioners whom he interviewed as host of a very popular radio show, Joe opens our own insights to a spectacular degree. This book is one-of-a-kind and not to be missed!

–Lynda Madden Dahl is Co-Founder of Seth Network International and author of eight, Seth-based books, including her Living a Safe Universe series.


Dr. Joe Mancini, Jr. takes the reader on a very interesting journey into not only past-life regression, but also, among other topics, Soul Contracts, Children’s Past Lives, Life-Between-Lives, Edgar Cayce’s Atlantis—all glossed through the perspectives of the Seth teachings. His book is a fascinating blend of interviews, case histories and even helpful hints about experiencing a past-life regression. Those new to metaphysics and professionals alike will benefit from this material.

Katherine Zimmerman is an internationally known author and speaker, Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist, Reiki Master, and EFT Practitioner. She is the Director of the California Hypnotherapy Academy, a former guest lecturer for the University of California Medical Center, Davis and a conference presenter.


Through interviews with experts in the field, Dr. Joe explores a fascinating array of topics related to past-life research and past-life regression therapy, ranging from natal regression to the Interlife to the true meaning of Karma. Encompassing both personal accounts and professional perspectives, Dr. Joe delivers the equivalent of a full-length course in a single volume. Best of all, Dr. Joe locates these conversations within the framework of Seth’s teachings on the nature of reality. In so doing, he makes a substantive contribution to the body of secondary writings that support and extend the Seth Material.

Joyce Kilmartin, M.B.A., MTP, Ph.D. is a former corporate consultant and now

a transpersonal coach and counselor in Barrington, R.I.; she is also the author of Worldviews in Transition: Applying Three Models of Human Development to the Seth Texts, and the creator of the blog, “Seth Says: Worldly Advice From Out of This World.”


For any reader new to metaphysics, Dr. Joe Mancini, Jr. has done an excellent job focusing on a number of intriguing topics within spiritual counseling, hypnotherapy and past-life regression. Using the Seth Material and Past Lives as a helpful lens, Joe interviews experts who discuss important areas that do not typically receive a great deal of visibility. Topics include, among others, Soul Contracts, Attached Entities, Natal Regressions, Shamanic Journeying, Edgar Cayce and Atlantis, and Life Between Lives. Plus he offers a helpful discussion about the research into the positive benefits that can come from exploring one’s Past Lives. I heartily recommend this book to those who are eager to learn more about these fascinating topics.

Peter Wright is a Santa Barbara-based, Board-Certified, Past-Life Regression Therapist with 24 years of experience in this field.


I’m delighted and honored to review Dr. Joe Mancini’s marvelous achievement, The Present Power of Past Lives—What the Experts Say. Dr. Joe is a modern day “psychic archaeologist,” whose broad talents include his first-rate ability to help people access not only their past lives, but also their future, probable, and parallel lives while under deep hypnosis. We are all multidimensional beings; and, indeed, Dr. Joe’s subjects reveal a rich tapestry of vivid, past-life experiences, many of which allow the regressed the opportunity to explore their own inner landscape and permit the regressionist, Dr. Joe, the opportunity to balance their inner and outer spiritual needs as necessary.  Dr. Joe’s work offers unique insights into consciousness explorations via various hypnotherapy modalities as accepted means of assisting people who wish to explore their “past.” I feel that we owe Dr. Joe a debt of gratitude for bringing us, with the help of other experts he interviews, to the cutting edge of this exciting field. Go Joe!

–Ron Card is a retired photojournalist and a Seth presenter and practitioner who has read and applied the principals and philosophy of the Seth Material for over forty years.


As a practicing, certified, clinical hypnotherapist who specializes in past-life regression, I found Joe’s book not only insightful, but also compelling and greatly enjoyable.  Dr. Joe’s book lovingly furthers the conversation on reincarnation and the very real potentials for healing and learning in the present lifetime by including a wealth of perspectives from first-person experiences of past-life regression.  The Present Power of Past Lives—What the Experts Say is accessible and coherent, and is presented in a practical format, which is of use to both the clinician as well as lay explorers of consciousness.

Jeff Ennor, CCHT


Joseph Mancini’s new book is an exciting array of eclectic therapeutic disciplines. Comprising a broad selection of inspiring, thought-provoking information, this book appeals to a broad, avid readership for both the curious professional and the spiritually-oriented reader. Using the “Seth” material and past-life regression as the focal point, The Present Power… introduces some of “the worlds beyond our ordinary space-time reality,” e.g., prenatal regression, earth-bound entities, between-lives material, soul contracts and group reincarnation. Shared in the format of radio interviews, the amassed information is easily understood and has a nice flow. Curious professionals can glean a number of valuable techniques for expanded exploration. This book contains also an excellent section of clarifying notes interspersed with Seth material, as well as the therapeutic perspectives, beliefs, and findings of those professionals interviewed. Mancini’s book is a most welcome edition to the expanding field of transpersonal regression therapy.

–Albert Marotta, MA., CHt.


This book is one man’s journey through the fields and valleys of his intellect and intuition with the Seth material and his Self as his guides—as he explores the minds he meets and tries to answer metaphysical, psychological and practical questions for himself and all of us, questions concerning how the existence of simultaneous time and past and future lives expand our present awareness and identities, and greatly impact our present experiences.

Barrie Gellis is a teacher, poet and one of the original New York Boys in Jane Roberts’ Elmira ESP Seth Classes in the 1970s. Among Barrie’s 4,000 poems is the poetry book, Outside Is A Secret Key.



“Explorations in Consciousness With Dr. Joe”: A New Radio Show


Hi, Everyone!

Yes, I am now the host of my own radio show, “Explorations in Consciousness with Dr. Joe”!

The show will start on Tuesday, August 13 and will continue every Tuesday for an hour at 10:00 a.m. Eastern Time until November 5. It will be hosted on the 7th Wave Channel of VoiceAmerica (NOT Voice OF America). Each episode will be re-broadcast several times during the week it first airs, and there will be an archive of past episodes.  You may access the episodes for free, either by going to my homepage on the VoiceAmerica website,  or by downloading the Voice America app to your smart phone and searching for my show.  If you subscribe for free to VA, you will get a program by email.

If you miss the first broadcast, you can hear, via my VoiceAmerica home page, the show re broadcast at 10:00 pm Eastern time.  If you cannot tune into the re-broadcasthow, don’t worry, for you can go to my Voice America Homepage and check out the Episode Directory (Archive).  Click on the show you want and then the “Listen Now” link to hear the show.  There are also links to download the episode as an MP3 file and to get it free from iTunes.

During the thirteen weeks, I will focus with my guests on past-lives, past-life regression, and related matters. We will  cover many topics including the nature of past lives, the therapeutic effects of past-life regression, soul contracts, reincarnating souls groups, children’s past lives, incarnations in Atlantis and in the time of Christ, Life Between Lives, “spiritual birth control,” and much more.  My underlying metaphysical approach is based on the Seth Material channeled by Jane Roberts.  For more detail, check out the list of episodes following this introduction.

You may be interested in how all this came about.  On April 18 of this year, I was able to purchase Jane Roberts’ work table on which she wrote some of her own books, accessed her “spiritual library,” painted her sketches, and read proofs of the Seth Books.  The table was in her writing room in the “Hill House” in Elmira, New York, and later in the house in Sayre, Pennsylvania, that her husband, Robert Butts, and his new wife, Laurel Davies-Butts, lived in for a number of years.  (Jane died in 1984, and Rob in 2008).

Jane's Table in the Corner of My Group RoomI am awed and joyous over the presence in my home of this table filled with great psychic energy.  I hope to do some of my own channeled writing (though with a computer rather than with a typewriter or pen!), while seated at the table.  It is no accident that the table found its way to my group room–what a great thing for me to manifest!

And it is no accident that, on the same day that I received from Laurel the first half of Jane’s table, I received also a phone call from the Senior Executive Producer for VoiceAmerica, the largest creator and distributer of internet radio in the world.  I thought with excitement that maybe he wanted to interview me about some aspect of my work.  Well, I was wrong–he wanted me to submit a proposal to host my own radio show once a week for an hour for thirteen weeks!  I was flabbergasted, awed, and, I must admit, a bit scared.  Geez, I would be heard in 32 countries!

Within a week, my proposal was accepted.  The producer said that he had asked his staff to search for potential hosts on the internet, focussing on spiritual counseling, hypnotherapy, and past-life regression.  I was one of about 12 individuals who had made the final cut out of 300 contenders.  And I knew nothing about any of this (though my soul certainly did) until he called on the 18th. He also told me that what clinched the deal for him was that I said that the Seth Material would serve as the underlying metaphysics for my discussions!

So, please join my guests and me for a spectacular exploration in consciousness!



Date:  August 13, 2013

Episode Title: Past Lives and the Seth Material, Part 1: An Interview with Rich Kendall

In this episode, Rich Kendall, one of the New York Boys in Psychic Jane Roberts’ ESP class in the early ‘70s, will help set the stage for the entire 13-week focus on past lives.  Seth, the “energy personality essence” channeled by Jane from 1963 through her death in 1984, talked a great deal about past lives, including the idea that they do not actually exist in our “pasts.”  Besides discussing Sethian notions about the true nature and influence of past lives, Rich will share some of his own encounters with Seth and what that gentle, but provocative personality said specifically about Rich’s past lives.  Rich will also share the impact of Seth’s teachings on his life then and now.  Some of his reflections can be found already in his book, The Road to Elmira, the first volume of a proposed three-volume work.


Date: August 20, 2013

Episode Title: The Nature of Past Life Regression and Participants’ Stories

In this episode, Dr. Joe’s guests are several individuals who have participated in either a group or individual past life regression with him.  With their help, he will explain the process of a typical past life regression and the difference between the individual and group modalities.  They will discuss what is most important to remember in order to have a successful journey to a past life.  They will focus also on the pitfalls that can frustrate success, such as fear both of not being able to access a past life and, paradoxically, of being able to do so.  Tips for overcoming other potential obstacles in the process will be offered, as well as tips about how to select a regressionist.  Finally, one or more of the guests will have a chance to discuss aspects of his or her past life regression and the effect the journey has had on his or her present incarnation.


Date: August 27, 2013

Episode Title: Children’s Past Lives: An Interview with Carol Bowman

In this episode, Dr. Joe will ask Carol Bowman, M.S., to discuss her fascinating and paradigm-busting research on children’s past lives.  Stimulated by the voluminous, pioneering work on this topic by Dr. Ian Stevenson at the University of Virginia, Carol furthered his research in her first book in 1997, Children’s Past Lives.  In that book, she describes how she came to believe in her own children’s accounts of past lives and gives guidance to parents about the nature of this phenomenon and how to respond appropriately to the past life disclosures of their children.  Her second book published in 2001, Return from Heaven, is the first to describe reincarnation in the same family, that is, for instance, the return of a deceased adult as the newborn of the daughter of the deceased adult. While family return in particular has many implications for family members, the greatest implication is that children’s past lives offer the greatest proof for the actuality of past incarnations.


Date: September 3, 2013

Episode Title: Past Lives and Attached Entities: An Interview with Greg McHugh

In this episode, Dr. Joe invites Greg McHugh, CHT, to share the ideas incorporated in his book, The New Regression Therapy.  Greg’s trainings and initiation experience in a semi monastic Gnostic Christian order contributed to the development of protocols for the healing of past life and present life wounds and limiting beliefs through the application of Divine Presence.  Such Presence may be drawn upon from the client’s Higher Self, Interlife resources, from Angelic Higher Resources, and great beings like the Heart of Elijah. Greg will discuss how he releases attached entities (mostly spirits who have left their bodies but have not gone into the Light). He will explain how such spirits’ own feelings and issues affect the client. He may also talk about his remote regression protocol with the use of a surrogate for a client who cannot be physically present in the therapy room.


Date: September 10, 2013

Episode Title: Past Life Regression and Shamanism: An Interview with Dana Robinson, B.A., C.S.C. and Shana Robinson, M.S.

In this episode Dr. Joe discusses with Shana and Dana, authors of Shamanism & the Spirit Mate, the connections between Past-Life Regression and Shamanism.  After discussing the nature of core shamanism, Shana and Dana and Dr. Joe share how they c0-created and c0-facilitated the first ever workshop combining the techniques of past life regression and shamanic journeying to effect healing.  Lasting two days, the workshop showed how seemingly very different modalities were in many ways very similar in their intentions, actions and effects.  Workshop participants who call in will discuss their impressions of this unique merging of disciplines, including their enlarged sense of their multi-dimensionality.


Date: September 17, 2013

Episode Title: Past Lives and Soul Contracts: An Interview with Linda Baker

In this episode, Dr. Joe interviews Linda Baker, RN, CHT, author of The Bridge Between the Worlds, Soul Contracts  and co-author of Alchemical Scents..  Linda will describe the nature and purpose of Soul Contracts, particularly how they affect our lives and relationships today.  In the first of two kinds of contract, souls reincarnate together to work through unresolved issues between them; in the second kind, the personality makes a contract with his or her soul to end a pattern of events that persists no matter who the other players are.  Linda will also talk about what she calls Spiritual Post-Conception Birth Control, a very loving process wherein the pregnant woman can communicate with her unborn child about whether the time is right for a birth; when it is agreed that the time is not right, a natural miscarriage can occur.  Of course, what karma is and is not is a theme that will permeate the discussion.


Date: September 24, 2013

Episode Title: Past Life Regression for Intact Groups: An Interview with Janet Cunningham

Dr. Joe interviews Janet Cunningham, Ph.D., author of A Tribe Returned, the amazing story of herself and 25 other people who have memories of being together in a Native American Tribe.  Told that she was the reincarnation of the daughter of Chief Silver Eagle, Janet will talk about how she unwittingly gathered together members of that past tribe.  Janet was told also that she was selected by the Grandfathers to be the next Chief.  As a past-life therapist, she then assisted the reincarnated members in releasing their traumatic memories of a devastating massacre. Janet not only did enormous healing work for the friends, family members and clients who were part of that tribe, but also pioneered a new regression modality practiced today by very few other practitioners: intact-group past life regression, wherein an entire group of individuals who were connected to each other in a past life are regressed together to that lifetime.  Listen to a discussion of an amazing collective journey.


Date: October 1, 2013

Episode Title: Past Lives and Natal Regression: An Interview with Tim Simmerman-Sierra

Dr. Joe interviews Tim Simmerman-Sierra, Certified Medical Support Clinical Hypnotherapist, the lead instructor at the Hypnotherapy Academy of America in Albuquerque, about Natal Regression, a modality not usually taught in hypnosis schools.  This process, which begins in the Interlife, may involve information from past lives that can be used by the soul to prepare for his or her current incarnation.  After becoming aware of agreements with significant others in the present incarnation, the person is taken through the moment of conception, womb time and the actual birth experience.  During this journey, the soul tunes into the varying feelings and thoughts of parents and the medical personnel present at birth.  Alternating between expansive and narrowed levels of awareness, clients can see patterns in their lives that are the result of unconsciously held beliefs formed during this period of development. This is one of the fastest ways to heal blocks to accessing your divine nature.


Date: October 8, 2013

Episode Title: Past Life Regression to Capture Lost History: An Interview with Joanna Prentis and Stuart Wilson

In this episode, Dr. Joe interviews Joanna Prentis and Stuart Wilson, authors of several books, including a trilogy on the Essenes that focuses in large part on the figure of Mary Magdalene. They will discuss how they worked using regression techniques and with the channeled help of an Angel named Alariel to capture otherwise lost history.  From the past-life perspective of Daniel, a friend of Joseph of Arimathea, they reveal Jesus’ healing in the tomb with the help of the Essenes.  Joanna and Stuart will tell us also how they facilitated other regression subjects to reveal the real significance of Mary Magdalene as a deeply beloved spiritual partner to Jeshua; as a charismatic, powerful and articulate leader of a group of female disciples; and as a counterpoint to the dominance of some of the male disciples.  Come join us for a mind-blowing excursion back to an erstwhile unknown past.


Date: October 15, 2013

Episode Title: Edgar Cayce and Past Lives in Atlantis: An Interview with Nancy Eubel

In this episode, Dr. Joe discusses with Nancy Eubel, MBA, CHT, Rt., QHHT, what the renowned psychic Edgar Cayce has said about past lives and karma and the effect of his perspective on her own teaching and facilitation of past life regression.  Focusing principally on the past lives in Atlantis that Cayce revealed in his readings for others, Nancy will share with us the main implications those past lives have for us today, especially since many Atlanteans have apparently reincarnated during the present time.  With its development especially of nuclear power and the potential for world-wide devastation, our current world seems eerily similar to Atlantis before each of the three cataclysms that apparently ultimately dropped the continent below the surface of the Atlantic.


Date: October 27, 2013

Episode Title: Past Lives and Life Between Lives: An Interview with Dee Chips

In this episode, Dr. Joe interviews Dee Chips, BSW, MHt., CRM, LBLT, owner of American Holistic University and President/Owner of the National Association of Transpersonal Hypnotherapists, NATH.  We will discuss the process of Life Between Lives Hypnotherapy, first popularized in the works of Michael Newton starting in 1994.  In 2000, Dee, along with her late husband, Allen Chips, DCH, and in collaboration with Newton, designed and implemented the first LBL certification training program under the auspices of NATH.  With the help of case studies, Dee will talk about how the process works: it starts from a client’s going back to a past life and then entering the Interlife after the death in that life and meeting guides, his/her soul group, various schools, the Council of Elders and those whom he or she will contract to work with in the next lifetime. Come join us for an absolutely fascinating excursion into a deeper reality.


Date: October 29, 2013

Episode Title: Research on the Positive Effects of Past Life Regression: An Interview With Heather S. Friedman Rivera

In this episode, Dr. Joe interviews Heather S. Friedman Rivera, RN, JD, Ph.D. about her personal and professional discovery of the uses of Past Life Regression and the recent research she has done on the positive effects of Past Life Therapy.  Plagued by chronic illnesses, Heather found much relief in Past Life Regression and decided to do research on what other participants in this modality had said were its most likely and most therapeutic effects.  Her research is unique in that it relies not on anecdotal data and individual cases, but rather on a broad cross section of data gathered from respondents of various ages, gender, religious upbringing, and experiences.  Among other therapeutic effects, the most prevalent reported is that death no longer holds as much fear for most participants in Past Life Regression.


Date: November 5, 2013

Episode Title: Past Lives and the Seth Material, Part 2: An Interview with Lawrence Davidson

In this episode, Dr. Joe interviews Lawrence Davidson, another of Jane Roberts’ ESP students in the early ‘70s. Lawrence shares how he came to find out about Seth, the “energy personality essence” channeled by Jane, and why he came to Jane’s weekly classes.  He also shares his own memories of how Seth approached the topic of past lives and perhaps even what Seth said about Lawrence’s own. His anecdotes about the Seth phenomenon then and through the years, and about how those early class experiences changed his life, add much color to his story.  Finally, his perspectives on the San Francisco Bay Area Seth Conference he has organized for the last several years show the ongoing power of the Seth Material.

Karma: What It Is and Is Not

         In 2012, in an unusual appearance for early March, major tornados wreaked horrific damage to the Midwest and South.  As I watched news clips and read newspaper accounts of the utter destruction of homes, buildings and even entire small towns, I felt enormous empathy.  And, at the same time that I listened to an elderly man weep over the complete loss of his property, I started thinking, for the umpteenth time, of the notion of Karma.

Many people would likely think it inappropriate, if not downright scandalous, to be contemplating such an “abstract” concept while such devastation has concretely diminished, if not flat out destroyed, the hopes and aspirations of those affected.  And those critics would be absolutely correct in the short run, especially if anyone  carelessly and rudely broached the notion with, for instance, that elderly man who is trying so desperately to cope with the end of his world as he knows it.  But the critics’ viewpoint would not be useful in the long run because the “abstract” notion is in fact very concrete and practical since it affects people’s thinking and thus their future manifestations.  Even so, some critics would still object because they would not want to inflict such a notion on a suffering man, a concept which they consider cruel and blaming of the victim.  Yet, such is a crude understanding of the concept.

For many of those new to the concept of Karma and its connection to reincarnation, it may mean simply that one action breeds another, particularly in terms of the old (Biblical) saying, “An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth.”  This definition focuses on sin, on apparently negative actions only, and thus does not suggest that any good that is done in one life will bring about good in another. Moreover, this definition of Karma, focused as it is on bad deeds committed in this life or another, suggests what amounts to psychic revenge: if you do something bad to me in one life, I (or someone or something else on my behalf) will do the identical thing to you in the same life or a future one.  This is compensation, “pay-back,” of the most literal sort.

So, now, if I imagine talking about Karma as outlined above at any time to the pained, elderly man, I could understand how I would be combining insult with injury, adding to his intense feelings of victimization and powerlessness the feeling of being punished:  “See, old man, what you created by your sins!  You have only yourself to blame—it is entirely your fault!  You made this bed, and now you have to lie in it!”

Besides blaming the victim, there are at least three other problems with this conceptualization of Karma: First, if Karma is supposed to facilitate major soul learning, there is very little learning involved (basically, do not do the bad deed again…or else!) that might help the person evolve into higher consciousness.  Second, because individuals who are suffering terribly physically or emotionally are immediately and judgmentally seen as having been “very bad” in this or another life, the observer may feel it justifiable to withhold compassion and to distant himself or herself from the “bad person; unfortunately, with such a decision, a major opportunity for both individuals to advance in consciousness is lost.  Third, as Karl Schlotterbeck says in Living Your Past Lives, if a person is always in reactive mode to what he/she or someone else has done in the past, there seems little way to get out of that reactivity and start something new.

Another view of Karma is that it is a manifestation of cosmic cause and effect.  While this conceptualization is similar to “an eye for an eye,” it is less personal, less moralistic, and thus less judgmental. It is more mechanical, suggesting a blind, universal law, such as Newton’s view that for every motion that is a reaction.  So, again, think of talking with the elderly man altered forever by the tornado:  “See, ol’ buddy, it is even worse than you thought—you are not even being punished, which might have a meaning, however horrifying to you.  Uh-uh, there is no meaning except that this horror just happens indiscriminately according to some meaningless, merciless law.”  That would go over quite well, don’t you think?

Yet, as Schlotterbeck notes, this view does not satisfy also because it seems to be only a part, like the view of pay-back, of a larger picture. If one shifts to a slightly different view of Karma, that of “balancing,” there is still a problem, says Schlotterbeck.  In the balancing conceptualization, bad deeds in one life may be balanced, “made up for,” by good deeds in another or by “creative suffering” often idealized by certain religious bodies.  The idea is to always balance good and bad.  However, what if you do a lot of good in one life?  In this view, in order to balance all that good, you would have to do a lot of bad in another life. Accordingly, I can say to the nice, older man, “Hey, mister, you just have to know that all this pain happened to you in this life because in another, you were just too good—how about that!—we gotta keep that balance going!” Now, that’s a kicker!

Schlotterbeck, as I do, sees all of these explanations of Karma as still manifesting a tinge or much more than a tinge of the notion of reward and punishment.  He offers a different view: Karma as action that promotes healing, that is, remembering both the Oneness of all things and the individual’s being part of that Oneness. When someone does a “bad” deed, he (or she) creates the illusion of being separate from that which he harms; in time this separation brings about pain based on the “loss” of connection, pain that can last lifetimes if it is not experienced as what it truly is.  While this process seems to suggest compensation and punishment and balancing, it is much more than that.  The process suggests that there is something in all things which moves towards Completeness, towards Wholeness.  Thus the individual who feels the pain of separation is constantly moved back toward Oneness by something within him that repeats the painful pattern of the “bad deed.” In this way the individual has countless chances really to face the pattern directly and thereby to “wake up,” to break the illusion of separation he himself created and realize himself once more as an aspect of the One.  Moreover, he learns that, when he harms another who like him is an aspect of the One, he is not separate from his harm, for he harms also himself as part of the One.  From this perspective, Karma is the repetition of a painful pattern whose primary purpose is not punishment, but recollection of and reconnection with the One (or, more accurately, awareness that the separation never took place).

This perspective on Karma seems at first much more appealing since there is no blaming the victim and no automatic, impersonal, indiscrimate, merciless and ultimately meaningless cause and effect, and no equally impersonal, distressing balancing act.  So, I now can say to the elder beleaguered by the explosive tornado, “Sir, in time you will see that your current pain is really an illusion and is based also on another illusion, that whatever you did in the past divorced you from Source.  But that separation never really happened!  Once you recognize the illusions for what they are, pain disappears and you realize you did not ever separate from the One.”  Somehow, even if this is a positive conception of Karma, I doubt the poor man, looking for a place to sleep tonight, would be interested in such a high-level, metaphysical perspective. Moreover, something here still seems incomplete and even a bit strange.  For, there is still the implicit view that something happened back then that is still affecting now; moreover, there is no satisfying understanding of why these illusions should occur in the first place!

Still Another View

         There is, however, still another view of Karma: it simply does not exist!  Let me explain.

         According to Seth, channeled by Jane Roberts, time, comprising past, present and future, is one of the “root assumptions” that frame our earthly existence.  So is space.  Here in three-dimensional reality, we operate as though time and space were absolute realities, even though they are root assumptions just of this reality and thus really distortions of what truly is.  They are, in fact, illusions—they don’t exist beyond this reality.  It is perfectly appropriate, while we are here, that we operate within these illusions, as long as we recognize them as illusions developed so that we can learn what cannot be learned without them.  This is especially true when we think of reincarnation, the notion of which is based on time.  As Seth says: “We have mentioned reincarnation hardly at all, yet here let me state that that theory is a conscious-mind interpretation in linear terms….it is highly distorted” (The Nature of Personal Reality, p. 153).

This “conscious-mind interpretation in linear terms” is also the paradigm that informs Newtonian physics, which buttresses the idea that what goes around comes around, that effect follows cause, that for every action there is in time a reaction, and that, extrapolating, retribution follows sin inevitably. In contrast, quantum physics, born at the turn of the twentieth century, disputes the notion of time so enshrined by Newtonian physics and thus, inadvertently, aligns with Seth’s view of time as an illusion. (Quantum physicists have actually found elementary “particles” that go back in time!) Likewise, nearly all mystical traditions say that time, as we conventionally describe it, does not exist; or, to put it another way, all time periods are simultaneous.

If all events occur simultaneously, then Karma, based on the notion of cause-creating-effect, cannot exist.  Cause-and-effect is an essentially time-bound concept: the past essentially creates, then, the present and future.  But if all time is simultaneous, a “bad deed” in the “past” cannot create Karma for the “present” and “future.”  Moreover, simultaneous time means that all events are causes AND effects at the same “time.”  One implication of this view is that the so-called future can “cause” a problem in the so-called present and the so-called past.  Another implication is that the so-called past is not “finished,” done with—in fact, it is still going on and can be changed by the so-called present and future which exist “side-by-side” with it.  There is, then, a constant interplay in the same moment of all “time periods.”  In Seth’s own words:

Those who believe in reincarnation will ask, ‘What about past-life beliefs?  And even if I forget the idea of guilt, am I bound to follow the rules of karma?’

Since all is simultaneous, your present beliefs can alter your past ones, whether from this life or a ‘previous’ one. Existences are open-ended.  Now with your ideas of progressive time and the resulting beliefs in cause and effect, I realize this is difficult for you to understand.

Yet within the abilities of your creaturehood, your current beliefs can change your experience; you can restructure your ‘reincarnational past’ in the same way that you can restructure the past in this present life (The Nature of Personal Reality, p. 374).

Furthermore, says Seth:

Your religious ideas have often told you that deformities at birth were the result of the parents’ sins cast upon the children, or that another kind of punishment was involved in terms of ‘karma.’….The entire idea of reincarnation has been highly distorted by other religious concepts.  It is not a psychological arena composed of crime and punishment.  Again, you have free will in the conditions of your life, given the characteristics that are your own (Dreams, ‘Evolution,’ and Value Fulfillment, p. 310).

This emphasis on free will is very germane to the notion that karma does not exist in any of the terms I have discussed in the first section.  And free will is also at the very core of the central notion in Seth’s metaphysics: Each of us creates his or her own reality…without any exceptions.  To believe otherwise is to disempower yourself, to allow feelings of victimization to drown you in powerlessness and despair.  As Seth says:

…many schools of thought over-emphasize the effects of reincarnational existences, so that often they explain present-life circumstances as a result of rigid and uncompromising patterns determined in a ‘past’ life. You will feel relatively incompetent to handle present physical reality, to alter your environment, to affect and change your world, if you feel that you are at the mercy of conditions over which you have no control….You are not under a sentence placed upon you for original sin, or any childhood events, or by past-life experience….They affect you as any experience does.  Time is not closed, however—it is open.  One life is not buried in the past, disconnected from the present self and any future self as well (Seth Speaks, p. 58).

But, hold on, doesn’t the belief that we create our own reality bring us back, once again, to the notion of blaming the victim, a disempowering situation?  It is absolutely true that each of us chooses what we experience in our world, no matter how horrible or positive.  But choosing what you create is not the same as inevitably, inexorably, unavoidably suffering the consequences of your actions.  Rightly understood, self-creation is utterly empowering, given, as Seth says above, that we have the power to make any changes we desire at any time if we discover that our self-creation does not bring us what we want. He continues, “You cannot justify or rationalize present circumstances by saying, ‘This is because of something I did in a past life,’ for within yourself now is the ability to change negative influence” (Seth Speaks, p. 181).

We are here, then, NOT to endure the inescapable suffering of karma conventionally conceived, but rather to learn all we can about how we create our own reality.  Outside of three-dimensional reality (3-D), our creations would be instantaneous; thoughts would be immediately realized into being.  Here, in 3-D, our creations take time to materialize, giving us a chance to understand the intricacies and implications of what we create and to modify or provide alternates to what we form. As Seth says, “You may have brought negative influences into your life for a given reason, but the reason always has to do with understanding, and understanding removes those influences” Seth Speaks, p. 181).

Still, why would we choose to create dilemmas and disasters for ourselves if, it seems, we do not have to, if we are not being punished for an “earlier” transgression?  The most fundamental reason for creating and experiencing the negative, as well as the positive, is what Seth calls “value fufillment.” This is the innate, Divine impulse in any entity, from every god and oversoul to every sub-atomic particle and vibrating string, to realize its infinite potential in any and all dimensions and manifestations.  Value fulfillment is the cosmic equivalent of the Army slogan, “Be all that you can be.”

Furthermore, says Seth, without forming both positive and negative creations, we would not really get that we create our own reality, that we have free will, and that we always have choices: “If only your ‘positive’ beliefs were materialized then you would never clearly comprehend the power of your thought, for you would not completely experience its physical results” (The Nature of Personal Reality, p. 99). Abraham-Hicks make this idea a cornerstone of their writings: the contrast between getting what you want and getting what you do not want sharpens your perception of what you want, spurs your creation of what you most desire, and makes much clearer that you are choosing what you experience.

The only reason for creating suffering, says Seth frequently in his books, is to learn that you have the choice not to create it.  Moreover, he goes on to say, even with all the destructiveness that has accompanied humanity’s striving to recognize and understand that we create all of our reality, there is much that is achieved: “The self-discipline learned, the control, the compassion that finally is aroused, and the final and last lesson learned, the positive desire for creativity and love over destruction and hatred–when this is learned, the reincarnational cycle is finished” (Early Sessions, #9).

The compassion and love Seth speaks about emerges from individuals’ seeking together their value fulfillment.  Before each incarnation, we make soul contracts with others to develop our potentials as far as possible in the upcoming lifetime.  This often involves one person’s being the “bad guy” and other the “good guy” to provide the contrast for each to learn more about who he or she really is.  The fact of soul contracts is another major reason why karma does not exist, since each soul freely enters into the tragedy and/or comedy that will soon be staged in 3-D.  There are then, ultimately, no victims or victimizers, and thus no karma.  Dick Sutphen says this eloquently:

We are all different as to intelligence, health and talents, and yet we are one.  We are all saints and sinners and no one is anyone else’s superior or judge.  We have all experienced suffering and we have all caused suffering.  And it is time to let go of the past.  Can you understand now that you create everything…that you are totally responsible for everything that happens to you? (Past-Life Therapy in Action, p. 103).

True forgiveness of self and other is then the achievement of what Seth calls “high intellect,” the intellectual-intuitive-emotional wisdom to realize that at the soul level, no apology or forgiveness is really necessary or makes any sense, since we all create or co-create whatever happens to us–NOT so we can grind ourselves to bits with the consequences of our actions, but so we can realize more and more of who we really are. Thus, the ultimate purpose of the notion of Karma is to realize its non-existence.

Still, because most of us have a long way to go before we can achieve this “high intellect,” we make use of the notion of Karma the way we make use of Newtonian physics.  In the macro world, which is the world of 3-D, Newtonian physics works well enough, until it doesn’t.  When we follow the root assumptions of the 3-D world to their depths, those assumptions prove baseless, especially in the sub-atomic micro world of strings and D-branes.  Yet, if we stay focused in the area where it seems to “work”—the arena where space and time seem to be what we usually imagine them to be—much can be and has been achieved with regard to understanding the dos and don’ts of using energy to create reality. Saying in another way what he constantly says, Seth notes, “Generally speaking, you are here to expand your consciousness, to learn the ways of creativity as directed through conscious thought” (The Nature of Personal Reality, p. 142).

In our learning the dos and don’ts of consciously manipulating energy, the illusory 3-D experience of linear time can be very useful (unless we forget that 3-D is not Ultimate Reality). In articulating the use of such experience, Seth comes closest to any sense of traditionally-conceived Karma by describing what he calls “natural guilt,” that innate sense of justice and integrity:  “Natural guilt is…highly connected with memory, and arose hand in hand with mankind’s excursion into the experience of past, present and future….Any previous acts that had aroused feelings of natural guilt were to be avoided in the future” (The Nature of Personal Reality, pp. 144-5).  But he is quick to say also, “It does not carry with it [as does traditionally-conceived Karma] any built-in connection with punishment as you think of it.  Once more, it was meant as a preventive measure.  Any violation against nature would bring about a feeling of guilt so that when a like situation was encountered in the future, man would, in that moment of reflection, not repeat the same action” (The Nature of Personal Reality, p. 145).

If someone who is now, for instance, a criminal had fully distinguished in childhood between natural guilt and artificial guilt, that person would not later have broken the law.  Artificial guilt is based on deep shame, on the notion that the individual who violates is at core rotten, horrific, incapable of redemption, totally unable to reflect and cease to violate again.  Through such an extremely limiting belief about oneself, either started in the current life or carried over from a past life and reinforced by an abusive family, the individual keeps creating a reality that expands his or her sense of worthlessness and self-loathing with the consequent, often violent, outward manifestations of various kinds.  If our laws and their execution were truly humane, we would, indeed, halt and incarcerate those who grievously violate, not ultimately to punish them, but rather to give them the time and space to do, with a lot of help, the kind of reflection that leads to wisdom and self-forgiveness and awareness of how we create our own reality.  Moreover, if their victims are to find ultimate release from their own rage, hatred and despair, they, too, would need to go deeply inside and finally understand how they are not, at the soul level, victims at all, but rather creators of realities filtered through limiting beliefs about life and their own power and nature.  Dick Sutphen’s words are again pertinent here:

Can you accept that wisdom erases karma?  These past lives [or past events in the current life] no longer need to affect you.  They do so only because you allow it…because you have not forgiven yourself!…Can you make it all right with yourself to release and rise above the past…the past of being a victim and the past of being the bad guy?  Can you let go of all the past situations you’ve lived and suffered?  If you are ready to truly forgive yourself, you can release all the undesirable effects right now.  You can wipe the slate clean and move forward into your present life, clear, focused, in balance and harmony (Past-Life Therapy in Action, p. 103).

Recently, I was called to be a juror; and, like many others so called, initially I was not happy to be summoned away from my life, especially since I had a doctor’s appointment for my injured toe, a meeting that might then have to be cancelled.  But I also started to feel an energy, a flow, that told me that I was going to be doing, not just my civic duty, but, more important, my duty to a soul contract.

I became Juror #11, called to render judgment on a DUI case. The defendant, a middle-aged man, was accused of driving while under the influence of alcohol, eluding police, driving recklessly, and driving 130 mph, double the speed limit, with the result that he crashed his car into a ditch and was severely injured.  Though the memories of a couple of police officers conflicted a bit, though the young prosecutor had to be helped by the judge to ask the proper questions about the chain of blood evidence, the State’s case was quite strong. While the Defense did not call any witnesses, their story was that there had been a second person in the vehicle who was the driver, while the defendant was a hapless victim of the recklessness of that driver.  But too many details provided by the prosecution made this story too fantastic to be credible.  The defendant was guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

When the foreperson orally delivered the verdict, the defendant hardly reacted, maintaining the kind of vacant, clueless look he had displayed for two days.  He wasn’t fully present, for his subterfuge created a distance between him and the proceedings.  As I watched him, I knew not only that I and my fellow jury members had done what we were supposed to do, but also that we had done what, on a soul level, he had contracted with us to do.  After the verdict, the judge told us that this was the defendant’s second trial, that the first ruled only by a judge also resulted in a conviction.  Given the incredible nature of his story and his first conviction, it seemed reasonably clear that the defendant had not wanted to acknowledge responsibility for his actions at any level. The substantial injuries he had sustained after crashing into the ditch had not been enough for him to awaken and start the process of owning his creation of his reality in any way.  He needed us, the jury, to quell our distaste for bringing judgment and pain to another human being and instead help him stop his recklessness and to do so even if it meant requiring his incarceration.  Such would become the most compassionate action we could take, even though he might not see it as such at the conscious level. Again, on the soul level, I saw what would happen to him now not as punishment, but rather as a very much needed opportunity to finally take responsibility for and open to his true self.


So, after all this meditation, what am I to say now to that elderly man who apparently lost everything to the tornado last March?  Should I outline to him the argument I just made above to disprove the notion of karma as crime-and-punishment?  Well, of course not!  To do so would be to erect a wall of words between him and me that would not help him in any pragmatic way.  Should I then think to myself, “Well, he created this disaster with the help of the tornado for some learning rather than for some punishment; therefore, I do not have to help him”?  Seth would say no. In another example, he says “You cannot say, ‘The poor are poor simply because they chose poverty, and therefore there is no need for me to help them.’  This attitude can easily draw poverty to you in the next experience.” (Seth Speaks, p. 181). What Seth is saying here is not that you will be drawn to poverty as punishment, but that you will have missed an opportunity to learn about your own capacity for compassion, as well as for poverty, and thus will be drawn to it again in another life. (If there was not already an attraction to being poor, you would not have been thinking so much about it in the first place. The attraction might be present because, for instance, you might be wealthy in the present life and wish, at the soul level, to experience its opposite.)

The argument I delineated above is, then, not for the elderly man–it is for me, so that I can understand in general what is happening and avoid any kind of judgment, so I can develop my compassion further, and so that I can render him in the moment what he believes he needs. I would offer my compassion and other assistance, and listen to him to know where he is emotionally. After a lot of connecting through various kinds of help, I might possibly develop a hint of why he might have created this disaster.  I might wonder, for instance, if he had lived several lives living securely without anything tragic happening to him; if so, he (along with others in the area, but for their own reasons), might then have summoned the tornado to give him a chance to understand how he could develop a higher sense of security, a basic resiliency, by facing immense difficulty and getting through it. Or he might have chosen the tragedy to develop his capacity for asking for help and receiving care and caring from others, after lives of being self-sufficient and giving without opening to receiving.  Or, beneath his immediate pain, he may have wanted, by feeling the power of the tornado, to revitalize his waning interest in life through “fighting back” to rebuild.  Or he may have wanted to simplify his life by living in minimal conditions so he could move without distraction deeper into his internal life.  There are many other possibilities to account for his creation.

No matter what, however, I would do my best to stay as long as I could in the state of “high intellect,” being consciously in both the 3-D world and beyond, and understanding the validity of the useful ficiton of the 3-D world while not being completely blinded by it.  In that way, Spirit would guide me to know in just what ways I could meet the terms of our soul contract and aid my companion soul in his value fulfillment while thereby advancing my own.


Roberts, J.  (1986). Dreams, ‘Evolution,’ and Value Fulfillment, Vol II.  Englewood Cliffs, N.J., Prentice-Hall.

_______.  (1997- 2000).  The Early Sessions, Books 1-8.  Manhasset, N.Y.: New Awareness Network.

_______.  (1974). The Nature of Personal Reality.  Englewood Cliffs, N.J., Prentice-Hall.

_______.  (1972/1994).  Seth Speaks: The Eternal Validity of the Soul. Novato,CA.: The New World Library.

Scholotterbeck, K. (1987). Living Your Past Lives: The Psychology of Past-Life Regression.  New York: Ballantine Books.

Sutphen, Dick, & Lauren L. Taylor. (1983, 1987). Past-Life Therapy in Action. Malibu,  CA.: Valley of the Sun Publishing.

Namaste, Fellow Explorers!

In this new venture, I am open to exploring any and all aspects and expressions of consciousness, its vastly multi-dimensional nature, and its wondrous mysteries within mysteries!

In so doing, I may touch on many topics, from angels and spirit guides to ancient astronauts and orbs, from channeling and divination to crop circles and crystals, from past and future lives to parallel and counterpart selves, from energy medicine and holotropic breathwork to near-death experiences and the Interlife, and from beliefs and the Law of Attraction to karma and shamanism.

In commenting on various ideas, I will use both my private experiences and those of others recorded in various media.  In time, as I learn more about the blog’s internal features, I hope to use images and videos to help illustrate what I am writing about; and I welcome any input about where to find such resources.

I should also mention that The Seth Material, as channeled by Jane Roberts for 19 years, has served as my psychic mentor for over 30 years.  While I have read widely and deeply many other channeled works, such as those by Neale Donald Walsch, Edgar Cayce and Abraham Hicks, to name only a few, nothing else has the depth, breadth, and utter brilliance of that venerable “energy personality essence” named Seth!

Despite what I have articulated above regarding the general import of this blog, I say open to its evolution, into its morphing into a shape I have not anticipated.  For, as I write, I am mindful that I do not write alone–that Spirit, through me, pens one of Its own artful blogs!

If you want to follow me and thus get an email notifying you each time I publish a new post, note that there is on the right side of the the blog a series of “ribbons,” the first of which is labelled “Recent Posts.” If you go down the list, you will find the last ribbon, labelled, “Follow Blog Via Email.” Read the directions below the label, push the button. enter your email address and begin to receive notices of new posts!

Let the Darkness Reveal Itself as Light,


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