I knew then that she, Julia, had somehow stepped into the archetype of the wounded female. I saw that just because she was a star, and got to act her way through many different stories, playing different roles, that in each role the pain that she experienced was no different to any other woman that ever lived - her ability to feel the deep sense of terror at leaving or loving another person was so tangible because we have almost all felt it at some time in our lives; and if we haven't we know someone else who has. I knew, as I watched, that the tears she cried were drawn up from the well of her own pain, her own suffering, the wounding that had occurred within her own heart and on some deeper level she was drawing on the well of all women that have ever been hurt. Because that is what actors do. Those who appear on stage or film or on television are 'acting' as representatives of the whole of humanity, they put themselves up there for all eyes to see, reflecting our joys and our passions, our wounds and our fears….playing out endless stories. Much in the same way we do when we move through our own lives; playing out the stories we chose before we got here and which we create for ourselves with every thought, every decision and every action that we take. Even though we may have no conscious awareness that we are doing it...or responsible for it all.
It is an actor’s ability to get us to feel our emotions that makes their roles so important and is one of the reasons why they get paid so much; it is relative to the number of people whose lives they affect by what they do. Same goes for the sportspeople, the musicians, entertainers and people who reach large numbers of people with their work and stir up all kinds of emotions. The more people they reach the more value they provide. And how wonderful it is that in and amongst all the violence and destruction we see everyday in our world, whether fictional or in real life, there are still some news stories and TV shows and movies that give us messages based on hope and love. And not unrealistic, idyllic, unreachable kind of love but the kind of love that is messy and challenging and ultimately unconditional.
As I watched the film I was acutely aware of the message that ran through it; that so often we are judged by what we have achieved, whether we are single or have a partner or a spouse. By how much we are loved or seen as worthy of being loved …not by how much we love ourselves. And yet there is the irony because unless we love ourselves we can never be fully loved by another. It reminds me of the scene in the Wizard of Oz when the Wizard tells the Tin man that he is not judged by how much he can love but by how much he is loved by others…but to be loved by others he had to learn to love and value himself first. On his journey along the yellow brick road he did learn to value himself…he learnt that he was worth having around and he learnt that when you believe in yourself others do too.
The Tin man was presented with a ticking, red, heart shaped clock to remind him of his newly discovered capacity for feeling love and compassion - which had always been clear for those around him - just un-beknown to him. But how many of us, as we journey through life, are unaware of just how deeply and how completely we keep our hearts hidden, locked away, protected, away from the gaze of the world for fear that it might get trampled on or broken…how many are afraid to bring it out of the shadows and into the light….how many times have we turned away from another person - and that applies to people who are in relationships as much as to those that avoid them - just in case we are rejected, or in case we are not good enough or just unlovable? I will tell you. Too many times.
So, what can be done?
I have to say I feel very blessed that in my work I get to help people find the cause of their deep rooted fears and their inner wounds; the unfinished and unresolved issues that have been buried deeply away; memories of past and current life traumas and challenges which prevent them from being able to open their hearts fully. I am able to help them travel down their own yellow brick road to find the freedom to love again.To clear the blockages that have kept their hearts from feeling anything; good and bad. It is such a joy for me when I hear how things do shift for people once they do the inner work. One of my clients came to see me because he was afraid that he would never be able to get married. He had been experiencing severe panic attacks, usually brought on by the demands of his partners who wanted him to move their relationship to the next level. He did want to get married but the thought of making that commitment terrified him beyond belief and he had no idea why. He was two years into a relationship with a woman that he loved deeply and she was threatening to leave him if he didn’t take the next step. He wasn’t sure if he believed in the idea of ‘soulmates’ but thought that if they did exist - she was probably his. He did not want to lose her so he was ready to try anything.
We decided to explore the root cause of his fear and in the session he found himself in a past life; something he had not expected at all. He found himself in a cave wearing nothing but animal skins. His family and tribe were inside the cave but he was standing at the mouth of it with a spear anxiously guarding the entrance. Outside in the cold a bear and some wolves were hungrily waiting for an opportunity to attack. Eventually the bear did attack and he was pushed backwards into the fire. The wolves joined in and he was killed. His last thoughts were that he failed his family, that he was unworthy and a terrible mate and father. His last feelings were of failure and remorse. This powerful belief that he had failed had remained in his soul’s energy field and was the reason for his fear of having a family in his current life.
In the transformational part of the session he met with the woman who had been his mate, and the children they had produced, and they told him they had been very proud of him and that he had been an amazing role model. They reminded him that he was the one, even though he was much smaller than many of the other men in the tribe, who volunteered night after night to stand guard at the entrance of the cave to keep them safe. He had been prepared to fight to the very end to protect them and that’s exactly what he had done. He was amazed when he discovered that the woman was his current girlfriend. She told him that even though their lives had been cut short, in that lifetime, he had passed the test to see how brave he was. It meant that he no longer needed to be tested for that anymore. His contract was completed and he could release it. He was then able to give himself permission to enjoy his role as a husband and father this time round. The children embraced him and thanked him for his love in that life, which he had given freely and completely, and he shed more than a few tears. The message from them all was clear ‘You are worthy, you are more than good enough, we were so proud of you and given the chance we would choose you again and again and again’.
With the past life issue resolved, he then travelled, via hypnosis, into his future to see what life would be like if he didn’t change things. He saw himself in five years time, alone, stressed, being harassed by yet another long time girlfriend who wanted to get married - and him finding all kinds of reasons why he couldn’t; he was miserable and tired. He then viewed his highest potential future and he saw himself living in a beautiful home, being greeted by his wife and his two young sons, who jumped up at him joyfully and lovingly when he arrived home from work. Once again there were tears in his eyes as he saw how amazing it was to finally open his heart and allow love to come in. He saw that he had nothing to fear except missing out on having this incredible joy in his life.
His is a story that I think of often as such an example of how powerful this work is because he did marry his girlfriend, they have already had their first child and I have no doubt in my mind whatsoever that they will have another one. So many clients have told me that the things that they saw in their future lives happen almost exactly as they saw them. And you cannot make this stuff up.
His story and many others have been woven into the pages of my first book, Healing with Past Life Therapy, which does uses the Wizard of Oz as a Metaphor for the Soul’s journey. It contains real life stories from real life people whose lives really have been transformed. As a result of delving deeply into the unconscious space within their minds people discover more about who they really are, why they are here and, as a result of this, live up to the highest potential of who they are destined to be. It is my hope that this book, the accompanying CDs, and the second book that I am almost finished writing - which is to be called Inner Freedom - will provide a catalyst for change that will enable people to find a place within themselves of understanding, forgiveness and gratitude; a place where unconditional love is not only possible but the only way to live.