When and how did regression therapy originate?
Who is/are the founder/s of this modality of healing?
The origin of regression therapy as a modality of healing can be traced back to the Dream Incubation Schools of ancient Egypt and Greece. Then there were also the ancient Greek and Egyptian Mystery Schools, which provided access the past lives of individuals. Regression therapy as a healing method drew a lot from the work and findings in the field of psychoanalysis by Sigmund Freud, the famous psychologist of the nineteenth century, and he inspires much of its current form.
Freud may be termed as the Grand Daddy of regression therapy. He was the first person to propagate to the world that the subconscious, if brought to the individual’s consciousness and awareness, has the potential to heal. Before Freud, the psychologist largely depended on hypnosis to access the subconscious, but the art of hypnosis, then, was not as refined as it is today. When Freud realised that he could not take his clients effectively into a state of trance through hypnosis, he resorted to the art and science of Free Association to tap into the subconscious minds of his clients. This technique of Free Association is what is largely used in regression therapy today. Then we have Carl Jung, in the twentieth century, who started accessing past memories from the human subconscious withthe help of active imagination, Edgar Cayce, too, was known for acting as a channel to access the past lives of other individuals. In a crude way, in the 1950s, Stanislav Grof started using Lysergic Acid Diethylamide (LSD) to access memories of individuals associated with the womb, that is, the prenatal experience or foetal memories. His work and experiments in the field of Transpersonal Psychology shook and shocked the scientific community of that era: When there are neurons yet to be formed, that is, when the neurons are not yet myelinated, how can memories be retained or stored by the foetus? The next form of regression, also in 1950, came with Dianetics, a movement popularised by the science fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard and largely followed by the supporters of Scientology and the Nation of Islam. Under this movement, the process of accessing past memories was called auditing. The drawback of this technique as a therapy was that it focused more on diagnosing rather than treating. Its focus was on finding out what memory from the past was affecting the individual’s current situation, and letting them live with the trauma of whatever they explored through their subconscious, without integrating or giving a proper dosure to the memory in the present. In such cases, the issues would largely be left unresolved, reducing the therapeutic effect of Dianetics.
These drawbacks were largely cleared through intense work in the field by Morris Netherton, the author of Past Lives Therapy. Netherton refined the process and means of tapping into the subconscious of the human mind and gaining access to past memories for healing in the present.
In 1960, Denys Kelsey, a British psychologist, and his intuitively gifted wife, Joan Grant, published their findings of past life regression in their revolutionary book, Many Lifetimes. Denys, a scientist himself, approached the subject of regression in a very scientific and research-oriented way. He challenged the scientific community by bringing out the hypothesis that we cannot deny the existence of something abstract just because of an absence of concrete proof. He was referring to the belief of having access to memories associated with past lives, and not just those from the past of the current life or foetal memories.
The revolutionary work of the British couple mentioned above, paved the way for many other therapists from the field of psychology, psychiatry, psychoanalysis and metaphysics to come forward and conduct research and work in regression therapy and, at the same time, use it as a therapeutic technique to heal their clients. These include the likes of Helen Wambach, Michael Newton, Chet Snow, Roger Woolger, Thorwald Dethlefsen, and so on.
Last but not the least, one cannot but refrain from mentioning and acknowledging Dr Brian Weiss, whose work and writings truly brought this modality of healing to the vision and accessibility of a very large mass of world population.
With Warm Regards,
Coach, Heartfulness Meditation,
Amarantos® Certified Professional Past Life Regression Therapist & TRAINER,
#51, Profit Nagar, Pachanampatti arch Stop, Mettur Main Road,
Omalur- 636455 Salem (Dt) Tamilnadu India.
Mob: 099 521 064 67, 9362221324