This particular chapter in my book discusses the phenomenon of how karma, reincarnation, and past life memories, traits, gifts, likes, dislikes, fears play a lot into our current life. We have to experience challenges in order to experience soul growth so we do finally Ascend (and not need to return).
AFTERLIFE, REINCARNATION, AND OUR SOUL'S PURPOSE
Because the topic in regards to the afterlife, reincarnation and purpose of our souls happens to be of huge interest to me, I wanted to write up some facts that I had learned from several sources, including the mediums that I have used to help me. I have always been interested in these topics, but after finding out why I have struggled so much during my life, my interest in regards to this is even more intense. I now understand that my interests and obsessions I have had from the past were due to experiences I had perceived as positive had helped me developed a liking. I also know that my phobia that I suffer from today was stemmed from my last life. I also learned that if I stayed depressed, I would end up in a very low place after death. That is not what I want to happen.
We all at one time or another have wondered what really happens to us after we “die". Often, we wonder where we go. Perhaps some of us have done a lot of research and reading up on this particular issue, and found out different perspectives based on the source. No matter what religious background we were raised in, we have been told one thing in common during our upbringing. The belief of ending up in a place like “hell" or “purgatory" is instilled into us if we behaved very badly during our life. Or if we are very good or do our best to be, we will end up in a place like “heaven". We also often wonder if it is true if we do indeed come back to live another life again. So many of us also wonder why on Earth we would have chosen our lives, especially ones where we have had to endure a lot of challenges and heartache. I have done a lot of research on these topics. And most of my research was done through my sessions with mediums Bob Hickman and Agnes Fehlau. I also found out many good points that I want to add to this section from Robert Schwartz' “Your Soul's Plan". The first thing that will be discussed is what actually does happen to us after we “die".
THE AFTERLIFE/ ASTRAL PLANES AND SOULS/ENTITIES
If you have noticed how I used quotations around the term “die", there is a reason for that. It is true that our physical bodies do expire, however WE, as in our SOULS/ENTITIES/BEINGS never die. We shed our external layer which is our physical bodies, but our energies transform and our thoughts, desires and spiritual levels remain with us. No matter how you were raised in terms of religion, there is truth to what you have been taught about the afterlife. Indeed you will end up in a very low place if you have lived a negative life. Or if you stayed on a positive path during your life, you will end up in a very high place. That may sound somewhat judgmental but it's the truth. Most of us end up transitioning to a higher and less dense realm than Earth called the astral planes. There are other planes that exist beyond that, but those will not be discussed. There are three sections in the astral planes, and within these three sections there are many layers within. These sections of the astral planes are the lower, middle, and higher.
The lower astral planes are where individuals end up who have lived a life producing very low vibrations, or one would interpret living a dark life. If you lived a life of inflicting pain to others or even yourself of some kind of another, somewhere in the lower astral plane is where you will go. Even if you were devoted to a particular religion and yet you still caused others harm during the life, this is where you will be. The lower astral realm is quite dark and dismal, and still quite dense. This is what “hell" or “purgatory" is. And there is no issue with punishment. The fact of the matter is, like attracts like. A life of producing low vibrations will attract you to a place that is low and dense, based on your thoughts, which in turn cause you to act. However, even when in this realm, we can learn from our past actions through the help of our guides. Once we do learn and realize that we need to increase our vibrations, in other words have more positive thoughts and increase our spiritual nature, we can transcend to a higher realm in the astral plane.
The next part of the astral planes are the middle astral planes. This is where the majority of us end up immediately after passing. Those who lived in a relatively positive life but still had material attachments end up here. The realm here is extremely pleasant and would be considered “Heaven" to many. Because those who are here still have earthly desires, this is where we are for instance, spending our days eating chocolate without having the worries of weight gain (that is if eating chocolate was considered to be like in heaven to you on Earth, for non-addictive reasons). In fact the middle astral planes appears very much like clean and picturesque surroundings that we would see on Earth such as streams, green grass, beautiful buildings, birds flying, etc. Even though we still are somewhat attached to the material, we no longer really need to eat or sleep, but we can if we only wish. The middle astral planes are where our spirit guides reside, and where we come for help and healing. This is the area we go to review our previous lives in full detail, and after a rest here, we do our pre-birth planning (discussed later) for our impending incarnations in an area in the middle astral planes. When we are in a heavy sleep state on the physical plane which is Earth, we project our souls to the middle astral realm many times to visit some discarnate souls here who we shared some previous lives with. We also meet up with our loved ones who had passed on during our present lifetime. Some of us while being in a heavy sleep state even start planning future lives! The higher we transcend to the middle astral plane, our need for any kind of materialism diminishes.
The last section in the astral planes is the Higher astral planes, or the inner plane and is the least dense. This plane is free of any type of materialism and the vibrations here are extremely high. This is the plane that is filled with pure love, light and joy, and is actually a step closer to the One Source/God. Very few actually do transcend right to the Higher plane right after leaving the physical body. In fact many would rather call this plane “Heaven" more so than the mid astral plane because there is no materialism associated with this part of the plane. This does not mean that individuals who are ascended to the point of entering this plane have no association with materialism such as money of any kind. However, the relationship that these people have had with materialism was extremely healthy because they knew that love and light was the only source to happiness. The only ones who would plan to reincarnate from this plane are the ones who have a very special mission on Earth to accomplish. And in a case like that, spirits here would have to descend to the middle astral planes to plan out their new life.
It is possible for spirits in the higher astral realms to descend to the lower realms if there is a purpose for it. This usually occurs when it comes to spirits from the high astral realms counseling those in the lower astral realms. Spirits in higher places also visit individuals residing on Earth. However, unless a spirit that is residing in a lower part of the astral realm has heightened its vibrations, it cannot ascend to the next level in the astral plane. For instance, we can look at a hypothetical case of an individual who lived a very addictive life on Earth who never once attempted to understand the behaviors that were feeding the addiction. Due to the addiction, the individual was not only suffering physically but also emotionally, mentally and spiritually. Others in his or her life were negatively affected due to the addiction as well. This person was producing very low vibrations as a result of feeding the addiction. Because of this, he or she would be residing somewhere in the lower astral plane. The addiction remains, but the difference is there is no physical body to feed. This will produce further anxiety to the entity and this situation would be considered as hell. Some entities will make a choice to continue living through this kind of hell due to feeling powerless. Other entities in a similar situation may finally have a desire to ascend. The only way that can happen is if the entity heightens its vibrations, therefore it will seek help and guidance through higher beings. Once the addictive thoughts are vanished and the entity is in more of a peaceful state, the vibrations are higher and the entity will ascend to a higher realm. Unfortunately the entities that do not have a desire to find peace and to ascend can actually cause some damage to living beings on Earth who have similar complications.
In a case like that, these lower entities will be attracted to individuals that are producing the same vibrations and will end up attaching themselves to them. The reason for this is because the entity has no physical body to feed their addiction. The entity therefore can feel the same effects and satisfy the addiction that they once did on Earth through the person it attached itself to. If someone died from a drug overdose due to a drug addiction, the entity of that being will feel the same effects through a living drug addict who it attached itself to. Not only is this unfortunate for the entity, but the living person who is suffering is affected even more by the entity's influence which in the end worsens the suffering for both beings. Addiction is one example of how low vibrations attracts the same kind of low vibrations. If an entity is in the lower astral realm due to committing a crime it never had any remorse for, it can easily attach itself to a criminal on Earth. It has been said that many prisoners have attracted lower astral entities that have committed similar crimes while they were in the physical body. If the effected living individual is ready to heighten his/her vibrations, many times a spiritual cleansing is required in order to separate the low astral entity so the individual can successfully attract more positivity. The entity at the same time is encouraged to heighten its vibration but if that is not successful, unfortunately the entity will end up finding another living victim in a similar situation to attach itself to. I also want to point out that if an individual was either tormented during his/her lifetime or living in a very negative or confused state, at times even after shedding the physical body do not ascend to any area in the astral plane. These entities indeed remain Earthbound and many times do not even realize that they are “dead".
Earthbound souls wander aimlessly on Earth and this can occur for years on Earth time, but the entity would not know this since there is no essence of time if you are not in a physical body. Frequently they do at some point realize that they are “dead" if they keep trying to contact living beings and keep receiving no response. However, this in itself can create even more anxiety to these Earthbound souls. Like lower astral entities, these confused beings are known to attach themselves to living beings in a similar state for comfort reasons. Unfortunately, many Earthbound souls are afraid to ascend due to grief from being separated from a living loved one and familiarity, or for fear in itself. But some Earthbound souls who do want to ascend to a higher place will come to positive and intuitive living physical beings for help and guidance. Once these Earthbound souls are ready to accept the fact that they are no longer part of the physical plane, they usually do find it within themselves to ascend.
Unless the being has evolved to the highest plane, the stay in the astral planes is temporary (with a few possible exceptions for very low astral entities). The ultimate goal for every being is to evolve to the point of forming a true closeness with the One Source. Some souls are older than others, and some are more evolved than others. Therefore some souls are closer to the One Source than others. We are given many opportunities in order to achieve this kind of perfection. Achieving such accomplishment in one lifetime is extremely improbable. This is the reason that we reincarnate.
REINCARNATION AND KARMA
The ultimate goal of our souls is to evolve to a state of faultlessness, this kind of work will require multiple lifetimes to “get it right", so to speak. The process of a soul exiting a physical body and eventually, after spending time in the astral is reborn again into a new body is called reincarnation. Since there is no concept of time in the astral plane, it is impossible to really say how long it takes for the process to happen. It has been said at one time that a soul spends an average of 200 Earth years in the astral before deciding to reincarnate. However, depending on how fast the soul yearns to evolve, it can be much sooner than that. If some souls are in a hurry to evolve, and depending on what was experienced in a soul's previous life, it could take as little as 2 years to reincarnate (and in some cases even less). Some souls also choose to take a very long rest in the astral and may not reincarnate for 500 years, or even longer. In my case it has appeared that I had only spent 30-50 Earth years in the astral between lifetimes, especially over the course of the last 300 years. That in itself is a sign that my Higher Self is yearning to evolve. We can find out anything about our past lives, including how long we had spent in our lives in the astral through a universal source called the Akashic Records- or as some mediums prefer to call “The Book of Lives". All of our acts, words that we have spoken, thoughts that we have had and types of lives we lived on Earth are recorded in the Book of Lives. The purpose for this is to track our evolvement. Whenever I have asked Bob Hickman or Agnes Fehlau about my past lives, they receive the information through the Akashic Records. Even though there is information which we can easily get access if we learned to do so through the Akashic Records, we as physical beings do not consciously remember what we did in past lives.
Once we are born, we are forced to forget what happened in the astral as well as what happened in previous lifetimes. Our past lives and life on astral is referred to “behind the veil". This is because through experiences that we have, the goal is to make us remember who we really are- beings of light! I also want to mention that past life memories still remain in our superconscious, and highly evolved beings can learn to access this part of their consciousness easily. Our souls need to “forget what happened behind the veil" in order to master lessons and to evolve. Keep in mind what our ultimate goal is. There are several ways to evolve and master lessons through reincarnation. I want to point out that many times we reincarnate to be on a special mission, which in the end helps the growth of other souls as well as ours. However, I do believe that a main reason that we must reincarnate is to take accountability for past actions, in other words to balance karma from previous lives.
The word karma is Sanskrit for “act", and is the universal law of cause and effect. Whatever act you project is returned to you with the same impact. Any imbalances that we created must be corrected in order to remain within the cosmic order. For instance if in one life you had committed theft, in the next life you may end up being a victim to theft or fraud. Perhaps this can happen in the same life but either way, this is something that must be corrected. The purpose of this is not only to balance karma but for you to understand how your victims in your last life felt and went through due to your actions. Karma does not only involve others. It can involve yourself as well. If you lived a life choosing to poison or harm your healthy body, you could be ill in your next life. Understanding and learning compassion is also a way to evolve your soul, which balancing karma does. Karma does not necessarily have to be a term used in a negative sense. I also want to point out again that there are no issues of punishment, the issue is cause and effect. If you create positive deeds, this maintains the cosmic order and brings you one step closer to the One Source. In fact balancing karma is a major reason that our souls choose to reincarnate. Our egos may not understand this concept, but our souls or Higher Selves do and will want to remain in the cosmic order by taking accountability for our actions. However, we have to realize that there is no sense of time in the spirit world. It is hard to say when exactly karma will be balanced. You may find yourself balancing karma in the same lifetime, or the next, or in two lifetimes. Either way, karma always balances itself. Aside from karma, our souls evolve by experiencing lives of contrast in order to make us appreciate who we are and where we came from.
If we always experienced pure light, we would fail to appreciate that aspect about ourselves and our evolvement would remain stagnant. This is why experiencing hardships, challenges and darkness is necessary. There is that risk of self pity taking over but eventually the being realizes that self pity and blame brings them to a place of further darkness. This is when they get to a point to search for the light and with the help and guidance of higher beings, they will find it and as a result, evolves. We are always on a mission to master new lessons by experiencing different ways of living in for those reasons- to appreciate who we are. For instance, we may choose to experience one life being materially wealthy. After that life has expired and if we feel that we did not learn any real lessons or took everything for granted, we could choose to experience poverty in the next life. The purpose of this particular lesson would be to make us realize that there is a lot in life to be grateful for. Remember, we will have blessings thrown in to help us remember what matters no matter how little money we may have such as health. If we have learned that successfully, and if we choose to live a wealthy life again and still remembered to count our blessings, a lesson of living in poverty would no longer be needed. We always have to keep in mind that there is the concept of free will when we plan our lives, which can in the end also be a great teacher. We could design a blueprint of living a life in poverty, but during that life we could also create a way to become wealthy. In that case, a lesson would be learned too. You will come to realize that you are worth of wealth. In the end, you will work very hard to achieve anything you desire. There are different ideas when it comes to free will. If you choose to incarnate during a dangerous time even though you have a life of your own planned out, being caught in danger could occur. This can in the end create soul growth, but also potentially cause soul damage.
If we were scarred during a lifetime, we will choose to reincarnate to heal. Depending on the severity of the soul damage, several incarnations for proper healing may be necessary. The ultimate goal also includes achieving eternal happiness and peace. If we had past life damage, we could be born fearful and prone to anxiety as well as having depression in the next life. Those issues will have to be focused and worked on.
Aside from carrying fear and even phobias from a traumatic previous life, we do indeed carry our personality traits, likes, dislikes, talents, weaknesses, and desires from any previous life. For instance if you were an artist in a past life, you could potentially be an artist again in another life due to the fact that your have an imprinted talent in art. The soul is imprinted with these traits but as we keep evolving, these characteristics could potentially alter from one lifetime to another. You may come into a life with having a strong dislike to swimming. Although, you may connect with an influential friend who enjoys swimming. This alone could change your tastes and perceptions. In the next life, you may come in having an extreme love for water! I also want to point out that some of our talents or traits in general that we have carried from past lives could remain dormant during a lifetime if the soul is focusing on mastering a particular unrelated lesson. The trait could end up emerging again in a future life, especially if the lessons we are meant to master involve these characteristics. Our souls know what steps we need to take to evolve, and before we are born we plan out our lives in accordance to what lessons we need to learn.
A lot of the information that I have received in regards to this topic is based on what I have read from Your Soul's Plan: Discovering the Real Meaning of the Life You Planned Before You Were Born by Robert Schwartz. Our souls know when the time is right to return to Earth to master lessons, balance karma, to heal or to carry out a unique mission. However, our souls do not just jump in and return. We actually must take the time in the middle astral planes to plan out our upcoming incarnations carefully. This is done by reviewing the information stored in the Akashic Records which happens after death, before we rest. Based on the data we receive, we know what steps to take for the next life in order to help with our evolvement. In order for careful planning to happen, we have indepth discussions with our spirit guides who will be at our side during our upcoming life. We also have conversations with souls who we plan to share our incarnation with. Some souls who we meet up with in the planning session are souls who we have never shared any previous lives with. The purpose of these new connections involving themselves in our lives is to support our reasons for returning to Earth. We also agree to reunite with souls who shared with during previous lives. The reason for this could be to either balance karma if necessary. Another reason would be if we had a pleasant relationship with a particular soul, we would want it to be back into our lives for friendship, support or family.
In the planning process we also choose our parents, mates, siblings, and children, if any are involved in the upcoming incarnation. We also plan the area of birth, the homes we will live at, the schools we attend, and workplace. Our names are also planned, as well as our birthdates. Ever wonder why our parents “liked" a particular name? Before we were even conceived, we already knew who are parents were and telepathically communicated with them. When they heard us speaking, this is when they “decided" upon a name. Our challenges are planned out, as well as gifts, and a blueprint is drawn up. This is why when we have numerology or astrology readings, they tend to be quite accurate. Our soul's blueprints and karma are indicated through numbers and stars. Since evolving is the main mission, our souls at times can become quite overenthusiastic while planning an incarnation and never take into consideration as to how the ego would handle challenges. This is also the reason that we require spirit guides to help out with our planning sessions.
Spirit guides are highly evolved spiritual entities who take on the mission of helping physical beings remain on task through telepathic communication. Even though all spiritual beings have both female and male energies, we tend to favor one form of energy over another. Spirit guides who appear to be male prefer male energies over their female energies and vise versa. Usually when we develop an instinct about something and turn out to be correct, this is a result of us successfully listening to what our spirit guides are telling us. They had an important part in our planning sessions. As I just said, before incarnation, we rarely realize how strong the egos are. However, our spirit guides always do understand how our egos would come into play. Our spirit guides may give us warnings about what we could possibly encounter if we were to incarnate during a dangerous time that could take us away from our destiny plan. And in the end could cause soul damage instead of growth. We may not always listen. That said, we have to understand that even though we have a blueprint drawn up, free will could change our course in life.
Free will usually occurs when we ignore our instincts and intuition, or even fight with it. In other words if we do not pay attention to what the spirit guides are telling us in order to keep us on our path, other situations could come into play. However, this is not necessarily perceived as negative. Free will in the end could be an excellent teacher and assist with our soul growth.
Since our ultimate goal is to reach spiritual perfection, you now understand as to why we end up in the area of the astral plane after death where we attract. It is easy to see why reincarnation is a necessary tool for the soul. Once we decide to return to Earth for an incarnation, it is very understandable as to why we must review our previous lives carefully to understand what karma must be balanced and what lessons we must learn. Pre-birth planning is done precisely with the help of spirit guides and other souls that plan to incarnate around the same time.
As previously discussed, time is not a concept understood in the spirit world. That is why we can take as long as we would like to grow or if we are in a hurry, we may spend very little time in the astral planes and keep living lives that one would consider harsh. We are all unique, but at the same time have one thing in common. We all have a yearning to be at the same place with the One Source!
Unless a newer soul agrees to learn through many hardships to evolve, generally speaking the older the soul, the closer the soul is to the One Source. I have no idea how close I really am to the One Source, but I am evolving quite fast. As you will read about my past lives and eventually my current life in the following chapters, you will see how little time I really have spent in the astral plane. You will also read up on during my life reviews after exiting from Earth during my prior lives what I have learned from my previous incarnations, and what lessons I had planned to experience in my upcoming incarnations to simply grow. Over the course of my lives that I had written about, you will notice what traits I had ended up carrying on and what traits I had dropped. You will also notice a trend about my relationships with other people, all based on lessons that I have agreed upon learning. You may actually find many trends once you read about my incarnations.
Schwartz, Robert (2009) All about pre-birth planning. Your Soul’s Plan: Discovering the Real Meaning of Life Planned before You were Born, Chapter 1, “Pre-Birth Planning” pages 19-31.