Past lives.
Have you lived before?

Past lives? Hahaha. You’re kidding, right?

If there’s one subject that brings about guffaws of disbelief, it’s past lives.

“Prove it. You can’t so it’s not true, is it?” followed by a roll of the eyes.

“Surely you don’t believe that rubbish!”

“How come everyone claims they were Cleopatra?” Fair enough, although I don’t think they do, do they?

Then there are the mathematical clever clogs, “How come there are more people on the planet now than ever before?” I can’t explain that myself but I’m told it’s to do with the number of souls who’ve chosen to incarnate right now.

And of course, there’s the “When you’re gone, you’re gone” brigade.

25% of Americans believe in reincarnation

Past lives are not quite as nutty as the naysayers would have you believe.

Nearly 20% of the world’s population believes in reincarnation. That’s based on religion so points towards Asian traditions.

Yet this is the real eye-opener: 25% of Americans and 27% of the UK believe in reincarnation. Even I nearly fell off my chair when I read that.

Even philosophical giants believed in some form of rebirth from Pythagoras to Socrates to Plato, to name a few. So surely, it’s not quite as flaky and woo-woo as all the scoffs suggest?

It’s weirder that more people believe in reincarnation than in horoscopes — a measly 15% — yet virtually every mainstream newspaper has a page of horoscopes.

Reincarnation isn’t so daft

A mere 12 years old, I woke up one morning, believing in life after death. The thought just popped into my head. I went the whole nine yards to believing in reincarnation, thanks to a lady called Mitzi Brandt. She helped me for 20 years using past life information. She showed how past lives affect the present and shared considerable knowledge about the subject along the way. To say I was lucky is an understatement, especially as she didn’t charge me a penny.

Instead, over the years, she became everything to me, not just a spiritual mentor, but my best friend, my mother, and my grandmother, all wrapped into one. Before she died, aged 93, I saw her for one last time and as she lay in her bed, I told her she was an angel and I meant it. Being Mitzi she chuckled and said, “Don’t be so silly, darling”. For all the supernatural talk she was a no-nonsense, straightforward gal.

Sliding into anorexia

I met Mitzi in a rather curious way. I was sliding into anorexia when I went off to stay at a friend’s house one weekend. There, I met someone called Anna. Over breakfast, I casually mentioned that I had to keep the light on all night because I was seeing scary, ghoulish faces at night.

Blood-covered faces looming out at me

For months, every night twisted blood-covered faces loomed out at me. Not only that but hands reached towards me from the darkness, one or two hands always in black and white, sometimes with the cuff of a rope around the wrist. At other times I’d see a single eye in black and white just staring at me, often blinking slowly, right up close to my face. So close I could see the eyelashes. I hadn’t slept properly for yonks.

I put it down to an overactive imagination. But Anna, fortunately spiritually experienced, thought it might be related to a past life, so contacted her friend Mitzi, who knew all about such matters.

Over the years, Mitzi must have told me thirty lives or so, some horrendous, some lovely. There was no chronological order. They just seemed to be always pertinent to what I was experiencing at the time. I might get a life from BC and then I’d get a life in the 13th century and then I’d go back to BC. The floodgates opened and no sooner had one life come up and issues in this life melted away than another life would come in with its own set of memories and triggers.

Most of my lives involved pockmarked drudgery

Before I go any further, I just want to say I was never Cleopatra … or Joan of Arc, or anyone cool. Most of my lives involved pockmarked drudgery, family gripes, and dying of starvation. The most glamorous life had me working with the Knights Templars with the occasional chance to ride with them, but only if I stayed at the back and out of sight. The worst lives involved magicking up spells with other ne’er-do-wells in witchy covens.

The theory of reincarnation — think Dalai Lama and you get the gist

The theory of reincarnation is that we repeatedly return to the physical plane to learn. These lessons are not necessarily straightforward. Of course, we need to learn about things like kindness, but we may also need to learn and understand self-worth, standing up for ourselves, finding our voice, knowing what’s right and wrong, or just following our intuition. Ultimately, we learn to perfect our souls. We no longer carry feelings like greed or envy. We are empathetic, understanding, compassionate, and forgiving. We just exist as we are meant to, as pure love. Just think, Dalai Lama and you get a whiff of what we’re meant to aim for. Put like that, you start to see why we need to return so many times.

I’m told this isn’t so much about punishment

We return to understand how our actions affect somebody else and to learn what that feels like so that we don’t do it again. Part of this theory is karma, a system of debits and credits from the things that we have unfortunately all done in other lives that have to be balanced out some time or other. We choose to do this when the time is right.

Mitzi said, “We have all done dreadful things in the past, all of us”.

Most of us have dabbled in witchcraft.

Most of us have murdered someone.

Most of us have betrayed someone.

And we’ve all been treated badly, experiencing terrible things that have scarred our souls. Left to die on battlefields, abandoned by the tribe, poisoned, dying in childbirth. Take your pick.

Mitzi wrote, “Whenever there is trauma from a past life that you have not faced and dealt with, it is locked into your body waiting for the right time to be released.” (The same goes for the present life, but we’re talking about past life trauma here).

Your higher self knows when it’s right to deal with past life trauma

She went on, “When the time is right to deal with the trauma, your higher self knows when, and this right time is often when the right help is available.” I guess it’s not too big a leap to suggest that Mitzi came along at the right time for me to tackle my dreadful past … and my higher self must have decided it was right for me to do it when I did.

Alarming feelings

She said, “We experience the emotions connected with the memory and often certain physical symptoms that went with it.”

If we were betrayed by someone, then we can feel they’re betraying us now, even if there’s no evidence for it.

If we were jealous of someone in a previous life, we can feel irrationally jealous of that person now, even if on paper there is no reason to feel jealous.

If someone murdered us, then we can feel the same fear about them now, but we don’t know why.

If we hated ourselves then, we can hate ourselves now with no rationale.

Mitzi used to say that very often the emotions we experienced at the time of death are the emotions that wash over us in this present life as they are extremely powerful — ranging from terror to despair to hopelessness to revenge. We also often experience the physical sensations of dying like burning, drowning, bleeding out, or the wooziness of drifting in and out of consciousness, choking, being stabbed, or beaten. All very alarming when you’re going about your average day, going to work, or doing the weekly shop.

You may also have physical birthmarks that relate to a previous life or an unexplained new pain on your body that doesn’t respond to medical treatment.

Sudden changes

These emotions and physical symptoms can be triggered by someone in this life who harmed you in a previous life. The emotions may only be experienced with that person in this life. You’re furious with or fearful of them only. Your relationships with everyone else are tickety-boo.

Conversely, you may trigger in another person their past life feelings about you. They may act irrationally or angrily towards only you in this life. Everyone else is unscathed.

Of course, this could mean very positive feelings are also triggered. If you were married to someone in a former life and it was a very happy marriage, you may feel similar feelings in this life, perhaps irrationally. Sometimes you meet someone or have a relationship with someone in this life and it feels like you knew them before. The relationship may be fleeting in this life, but for some reason, you’ve connected again to say things that you didn’t say in a previous life or to thank them perhaps, or to tell them that you love them dearly when you didn’t get the chance to tell them before. Who knows? Great friends in this life often seem to have had positive lives in the past too.

I get asked when do you know a past life is in play and affecting your life. A signal that a past life memory could have come into present consciousness is when a situation suddenly changes, for better or worse. You’ve liked someone, suddenly you hate them. Or someone might take a sudden dislike to you out of the blue. Or things are generally going well and suddenly all manner of chaos ensues.

Triggers

It seems that something in this life can trigger a memory that brings back these feelings. A word, a piece of clothing, a sound, a smell, anything, can put you or another straight back into the memory of the past. It might be something they’ve said or done. It could be a look they gave you or simply the way they ate their apple that reminded your subconscious of a past life. Or it may just be the right moment.

Acting or thinking out of character

The other tell-tale sign is that you — or someone else — start behaving and thinking out of character. It’s because this life is being overlayed with a memory from a different time. You don’t feel yourself and barely recognize your thoughts and behaviors. You start thinking, “I don’t know what I’m doing,” “This isn’t like me,” “I don’t feel like myself at all,” or things like, “Why am I so angry with that person when I was fine with them yesterday?” These outlandish feelings can cause major league problems in regular day-to-day living.

Now, when I get these sorts of feelings, especially if they’ve come in suddenly, I stop and think, oh boy, is this a past life that’s come in?

We remember lives to cleanse and clear them for good

Mitzi said that you need to bring lives into consciousness to deal with them once and for all. She wrote, “It must be fully realized that these past lives are causing the problems you experience now. It is from these lives when still buried in the subconscious, that so many of your fears, hates, jealousies, painful relationships, and so on emanate. Once they are brought into consciousness, the rational mind can deal with them, and you can let them go for good. Whilst they’re still caught up in the emotional level of your being, they are cut off from any logical reasoning mind. Then, no amount of reasoning helps us to eliminate them. This changes once these unhappy memories are made conscious. You can then rationally deal with them.”

It’s not a quick fix

Being given past life information isn’t a quick fix. As Mitzi said, “Being given past life information isn’t a means to sidestep the emotional hard work. You have to do the work beforehand. You have to live out the karma.”

“By the time the past life information on a particular subject is given to you, you can be sure you’ve paid in full for whatever misdeed you may have done. Until that is so, the information always seems to be withheld. The past life information can help you bring it through, cleanse and move on, but you still have to do your duty.”

Mitzi always advised reflecting on the lives, forgiving everyone involved, and then releasing it for good. She’d say it all has to be comprehended, assimilated, and worked through.

We are only given the understanding of the lives so that we can let them go, not so that we feel angry or guilty about what happened. She said that forgiving ourselves is often much harder than forgiving others for misdeeds they have done to us, “But it is vitally important to forgive ourselves too and replace it with love.”

Things seem to lift and become lighter

The staggering effect of being given a past life is how it can bring about almost immediate change. As Mitzi relayed a life to me, in letters or by phone, I would feel physically lighter. It’s hackneyed, but it did feel like a cloud lifted off my shoulders almost overnight. Entire situations would change. Where I’d been afraid of someone, it just disappeared. Where I couldn’t face something, I could. Things that got on my nerves melted away. Even the ghouls evaporated, never to be experienced again.

It wasn’t always immediate. Sometimes it took longer to compute the past life and let it go. But I think the fact it could happen so quickly shows the power past lives have over us and how dealing with them brings about positive change. At the very least, knowing what happened in the past can help us understand the present on a much deeper level.

You don’t have to tell the other people involved

It’s not necessary to tell the past life information to the other people who were involved. They may have dealt with the karma already. Or they might not be ready to hear the information and are unable to deal with it in a conscious, positive way. As long as one person faces the trauma, forgives, and lets it go, it will gradually lift from the others who were involved. “The other person may not be conscious of its lifting, but with all these patterns being made known to you, it will influence others.” This is because we are all connected.

Witchcraft. Sacrifice. Starvation & Self-Loathing

By the time I received Mitzi’s first letter, I had moved from the UK to Australia to start a new job. Things were not going well. By then I had been diagnosed with full-blown anorexia. I looked awful, wretched, and haunted. I’d also taken a vehement dislike to my father, which was weird because we’d always had a fantastic relationship.

The first letter from Mitzi contained two lives with extraordinary information. Bear in mind, she’d never talked to me or met me. All she’d had was Anna saying there was this person called Polly who was seeing monsters at night and getting a bit on the thin side.

Life №1. Australia. Lemurian times. Thousands of years ago. Witchcraft. My father (who was not my father then) was the head of the coven. He lured me into the group. We then drew in and sacrificed my mother. (She wasn’t my mother then, she was just someone we decided would be good for nasty rituals). Someone who loved her found out what we’d done and murdered us.

Life №2. Wales. 13th century. Despite what I’d done in the previous life, I got myself involved in witchcraft again. My mother in that life was none other than my mother in this present life, and the same person I’d sacrificed in Lemuria thousands of years before. Not surprisingly she was furious to discover I was messing about with witchcraft again. Appalled with myself, and full of shame and humiliation I walked away into the moors and mountains to starve to death.

Karma paid a visit

Thousands of years later, karma came knocking on my door in the form of past life memories. The tormenting shame of witchcraft, human sacrifice, the memory of self-loathing, humiliation, and starvation said hello.

Mitzi wrote that because I joined the witches out of my own volition, not just once but twice, the karma was terrible. “You hate yourself because you allowed yourself to be drawn into it. The hobgoblins you see at night come from your own guilt.”

The shame of those two lives had bubbled up as an overwhelming sense of self-hatred in this life. Self-hatred is what leads to anorexia. Not vanity or super-thin models. It’s self-loathing and a deep lack of self-worth that creates anorexia. Starving yourself is a way to eradicate yourself, to literally cut yourself out, a ‘no body’, a ‘nobody’. The self-hatred from the previous lives was influencing my thinking in the present life. I was also re-enacting the starvation from Wales, like an energetic echo from then to now.

No, I can’t prove any of these lives. But is it possible to prove the life of a nobody from centuries ago?

There aren’t any records, so probably not. For more rigorous analysis, try reading Roger Woolgar or Brian Weiss. They’ll do a much better job than I ever could. There’s also a really interesting book called Beyond the Ashes by Rabbi Gershon about cases of reincarnation from the Holocaust.

Past lives save lives … and relationships

As I’ve mentioned, Mitzi gave me many, many lives over twenty years. I say gave because being told a past life and how it’s impacting your present life is a gift. They explained irrational, frequently painful, feelings I was having about myself, my family, and many other situations, including romances, friends, even work colleagues.

It’s safe to say that her work saved me from the ultimate self-annihilation of anorexia. And without a doubt, Mitzi’s work also healed my relationship with my father.

In addition to the witchcraft life mentioned here, she gave me several other lives with my father. Not only did I feel positive about him again, but the effect went a million miles further than before. I found virtues in my father that I had not noticed previously, such as his remarkable ability to forgive. She once told me that when lives no longer get in the way of the present, you do see incredible virtues in people you were unable to see before. I am eternally grateful to Mitzi for healing my relationship with my father.

Terminal illness

Just for clarity, she did say that the transformation back to pure energy and full health, is the norm but has its exceptions in the terminally ill. In these cases, when the information is given, although their karma has been played out, their higher selves have chosen to live out that illness.

Suicide

Mitzi also said that when it comes to suicide, unfortunately, it means that in some later life and we decide when we will do this, we have to again face similar circumstances to those which led us to the state of mind, whereby we decided to take our own life. We may even ‘act-out’ similar circumstances from a previous life in this life, as I found myself doing with memories of starvation.

Recurring patterns are different but significant

She also taught that in addition to the cosmic patterns of debit-credit of the past, we also become involved in many recurring patterns of existence. For example, one gets the kind of person who’s always the victim or always the slave. This is slightly different from karma.

Recurring patterns occur because, “at some point in the past, we have experienced some sort of tragically negative life and have died in this negative state of mind, probably very tragically. And it is the state of mind in which we die that can cause such negative effects in later lives. This is because the memory of this death and the circumstances which led up to the death become trapped in this emotional plane of being and there, that negative memory will cause us to keep on re-experiencing similar patterns as that which caused the original death. This is because we draw to us that which is in our emotions. The more lives in which we act out this pattern, the stronger it becomes. We can only break these negative patterns by understanding the cause and eliminating the unhappy negative emotions from our being once and for all time.”

Live in the present first

Mitzi was the first to say that we shouldn’t live our lives in the past. Everything that we are today is the sum of those lives and the first port of call is in the present. However, for some of us, the language of past lives is a way to help us understand and deal with the present. Also, sometimes Mitzi would say that an issue is not anything to do with the past life at all, but rooted in this life. Not everything can be blamed on a past life. Sorry.

It would be easier to not believe in reincarnation

I can’t say believing in reincarnation is easy. It brings with it a whole bunch of pressures. If we foul it up in the present life, we have to deal with it in another life. If we commit suicide in this life, we have to come back and do it all again. There’s no let-out clause. Often I think it would be easier to believe that when we die, that’s the end of it. Bing bang bosh. What a relief. End of. But it’s not like that.

Finally, a huge thank you to Mitzi

So there we have it, past lives. It should be obvious that I am eternally grateful to Mitzi for everything she did for me and taught me. I just hope I’ve done her justice here. I hope so. And with that, I’ll close with a little message to her.

Mitzi, I can’t thank you enough for everything you did for me and everything you taught me. I hope I’ve done justice to your teachings, wisdom, kindness, friendship and love. I know we had a life in Egypt way back when, but who knows when or if we’ll meet again. If you do come back to the Earth plane, wherever we’ll be, whatever language we’re talking in, whatever we’re doing, we can say, ‘How’s tricks?’ to each other like you always did to me and have a really good old catch up. Just to say all my love and eternal gratitude to you. Thank you, Mitzi. Love, Polly.