Letter to a Ten Year Old
About Past Lives

By Kathleen Jenks, Ph.D.

On March 21, 2005 I received a brief, sweet e-mail from the 10 year old son of a former neighbor. This is an excerpt:
...I was looking at your website with my dad and I was wondering if there is a way to find out who or what I was in one of my past lives? I was also wondering if you had any info on dragons and magic and stuff like that....
Here is my response from March 30, 2005 (I have deleted personal references):

...On past lives, with your parents' permission, if you were a few years older and if I still lived there (or you could come here in your new motorhome <smile>), I could talk you into a light trance and spend about 2 hours guiding you into one or two of your pastlives.  But that's not going to be of much help to you right now.

So, there are audio tapes available that could help you explore but I haven't worked with any of them and wouldn't know which to recommend. Your parents should preview them in any event, just to be sure they're appropriate. "Journey Home" (Larry knows where it is) might have some good tapes.

I do have some other suggestions though. What kinds of non-21st century things do you really, really *like*?  In other words, a non-trance-state way of at least getting very general information on earlier lives is to look at your current personal tastes -- this means looking at the kinds of music, food, art, clothes, architecture, furniture, etc that you really like or are fascinated by.

Long before I knew about past lives, for example, I loved colorful, embroidered gypsy blouses, skirts, jewelry, & music; also medieval cloaks, tunics, gowns, castles, poetry & music; also Arab music, men's robes, & camels; and Chinese art and clothing.  When I learned about pastlives, I realized that my tastes had long been hinting to me that I was probably a gypsy once -- or, at least, very much in love with a gypsy (I haven't turned up that life yet but haven't actually focused on it either). I was also definitely someone who lived in medieval times -- and I now know I was both male and female during those centuries.  I've also had lives in China and as an Arab -- in fact, I was once a bowlegged, skinny, lively Arab man who raised camels.  And in China I think I was an ancient priestess, and maybe a male poet much later.

So look at what your tastes draw you to.  Those won't necessarily be your most important lives, but the fact that you still love things from them tells you that you really, really enjoyed them.  That's why they're so close to the surface in your current life.  More difficult lives won't be so close to the surface -- they often emerge in a pastlife session as a total surprise.

Other ways to get a sense of who you were before: ask yourself, from what you already know of history, where/when do you most *hope* you lived?  Usually that means you once *did* live then.  If not, it probably means you deeply loved someone from there and associate that person with the place and time that person came from.

You could also ask yourself which time period you really hate and would never want to have lived in, not even for a million dollars: your answer to that will suggest you probably had a very unhappy life in exactly that time and place.  I hate Victorian times, for example -- they feel tight, confining, dark, drab, repressed, full of poverty. So this suggests that I lived then and found my life pretty awful. If you were a rich Victorian, it was a charming & graceful period.  If you were poor, as I must have been, it was a terrible time.

Another way you could try getting in touch with who you were in earlier times is to write a "pretend" story about an earlier life.  No one knows what imagination is.  Are you imagining you were a handsome Russian nobleman, for example, because you love the idea of being someone like that? -- or are you "imagining" that because you were once such a man?

The story you're writing will flow in a natural way if you're in touch with an earlier-you.  That's usually how you can tell if you're on the right track or just spinning out a cool fantasy.  I mean, suppose you wish you were Alexander the Great.  You start writing a story as if you're him and all you can think of is what you saw in a movie about him. That would be a fantasy that proves nothing except that you like the idea of being a Greek warrior/king like Alexander. What makes it likely that the story is "yours" is when it starts to really flow. It might feel wooden and stuck at first, so be patient. But if it suddenly takes off & you can hardly write fast enough to get it all down on paper, then you've probably tapped into an earlier life of yours.  Or, again, it could be the life of someone you loved or admired so much that you came to "identify" with their life even more than your own. Kind of like "hero-worshop." [P.S. I'm not suggesting you were Alexander the Great -- it's just a place to start. Famous people who fascinate you are a possible clue to a life lived in that person's same time period, whether or not you actually were (or even knew) him or her.]

Any of these approaches could just be "fantasies" -- but if there are shifts in how you tell the story, or how freely it flows, or how much overwhelming information demands to be expressed, or how much your language & insights change from the way you normally talk, then the chances are good that you're looking at one of your earlier lives.  You could still be mixing the details up with modern stuff -- that happens a lot -- but the general outlines tend to be right-on, and straight from the past.

If you find it hard to write a story, you might ask your parents to take you to Journey Home and let you look at some Tarot decks.  Pick one that attracts you.  Then go home and use the cards to help you find the general outline of an earlier life.  For example, shuffle the deck and ask things like:

what were my parents like?
what was I like?
what kind of work did I do when I grew up?
was I happy?
what did I most want to do in that life?
what was the most disappointing thing?
how did I die?
The list of questions can be endless.  Anyway, draw a card for each question, set it aside with its question, then shuffle again. When you have the rough outline of a "story" based on the cards, then freely use your imagination and invent a story that links all the cards together somehow.  Again, we don't know what imagination is.  It could be just a fantasy but, on some level, you may be tapping into an actual life.  Never mind what country you lived in.  The cards might look Egyptian, for example, but the life you "feel" might be in China, the Old West, India, or some other place.

Not all lives are human, of course.  So you can also ask yourself what beastie you'd most like to have been, and which one you'd hate to have been.  Chances are, you've been both.  In other words, you have to first *be* one in order to know you loved it or hated it <smile>.

Well, I think that's magic enough! It seems to me I have a page on dragons -- you could check my search engine or under "Common Themes."  You could also check my search engine for "magic" as I know I mention it in a zillion places.

The best magic is connected with nature, of course -- with earth, air, fire, water -- and it needs to be done with kindness.

Hope this helps!

Love to all of you,



Also see my webpages on:
PORTAL PAGE: Exploring Reincarnation, Past Lives, & Karmic Healing
What Is a Past Life?
Frequently Asked Questions
and Perspectives on Exploring Past Lives

For information on telephone sessions,
arranging public workshops,
or for private sessions in southwest Michigan,
please contact Dr. Kathleen Jenks at:
[Please forgive the inconvenience of having to type out the e-mail address
but if I use a "hot" link, I get swamped with endless spam.]

For information on accommodations in my area,
see my page on Inns and Hotels.

© 2006 Kathleen Jenks, Ph.D.
All rights reserved.
Page designed 28 August 2006

Art Credits:
"Children in a Boat" by Pyastolov,
"Young Warrior on Horseback Reaching into Water" by Anokhor,
and "Boar with Deer" by Tikhhun:
all are courtesy of Tradestone International

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