by David Hammerman, Ed.D.
Practitioners of PLT, like all therapists, must be constantly mindful that clients who seek our services may not be aware of what they actually need. In other cases, they may know but are unwilling to acknowledge or express this openly. In the case of a request for a past-life regression, one needs to be aware that it may be a cover against exploring painful present life issues and concerns. Dr. Hammerman has conducted research in this area with his clientele and presents a case study which addresses this issue, illustrating the multifaceted nature of a request for a past-life regression. It also focuses on how hypnosis, as a clinical tool, facilitates the process.
Discussions of past-life regression often focus on unearthed dramatic stories and on techniques to resolve physical, emotional, and spiritual wounds. However, the more mundane therapeutic relationship is both a rich source of understanding and an agent for change, as practitioners of more traditional therapies know. Recognizing and utilizing the complicated dynamics of the therapeutic relationship is a complex and challenging task that begins with initial contact with the therapist and continues throughout therapy. For instance, the request for past-life regression is sometimes both a cover against looking at present life issues and concerns and an entrance into them through an understanding of the dynamics of the therapeutic relationship. The following case illustrates this point and some possible ways to both recognize and deal with this common situation.