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What Are We Our Past Lives? is About

Are We Our Past LivesEverything we are can be traced to past lives.  Before birth we select our physical appearance, health, values, habits, talents, disabilities, and many other qualities.  We also choose our family members and close associates as well as our occupation and where we will live.  These choices are made mainly to work upon karma from our past-lives.   Knowing this helps explain who we are, why, and the dynamics of our relationships.
The main objective of this book is to illustrate how former lives affect people and their relationships.  Each of the first nine chapters of Are We Our Past Lives? begins with one of Marie’s past lives.  Then comes a historical perspective showing the circumstances that may have influenced that life.  Next, aspects of Marie’s current life, such as tendencies, abilities, challenges, and relationships are discussed in relation to that incarnation.  Her claustrophobia originated in a life as Tim, a young gold miner who suffocated in a cave. 
MarieGatesReadingJacobGruberJacobGruberFullRelationships with relatives present both in a past life and a current life are explored with karma, unresolved emotions, in mind.  A family member was responsible for Tim’s death in the cave, and he has paid back some of his karmic debt by teaching Marie to be less trusting of others.   
Marie’s past life as Rev. Jacob Gruber, pictured at right, is noteworthy.  Evidence of the 19th century Methodist minister was found in church records and in his biography, The Life of Jacob Gruber. This zealous preacher faced a law suit in 1818 for inciting Maryland slaves to rebel, and the book, written by W.P. Strickland, describes the trial.  Marie is shown here reading Reverend Gruber’s book.
Common traits like similar facial features and personality characteristics, such as passion and independence, link Marie to Rev. Gruber.  Further evidence of their connection was revealed when she visited the Baltimore church where he had served as pastor.  Marie became dizzy and nauseous and could not finish reading his articles in a Christian newspaper.  She believes the residual energy from his unhappiness there affected her.
Are We Our Past Lives? Distinction
Combined, psychology and spiritual studies help us understand mental illnesses and disorders and how they originate in past lives.  For healing, karma comes through from former lives in the form of these and other handicaps, and Ms. Gates, a psychologist, writes about her personal experiences with mental concerns.  She and several family members have battled depression throughout their lives.  Her son Colin has Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (AD/HD) as well as an anger issue.
 Are We Our Past Lives? is different from other books on reincarnation in two ways.  First, it illustrates how former lives affect personalities in a current life in greater depth than competing titles because of its focus on mental disorders and the complexity of relationships.  In the eleventh century southwest Marie was Hokam, a star ball player of the Hohokam tribe.  She believes depression in her current life began when Hokam’s parents shamed him for spending his time playing ball rather than taking a job to support the family.  They eventually forced him from their home, and Hokam and his parents never spoke again.  Hokam also alienated himself from the rest of his society.  In the present life Marie was shy, avoiding people during her youth. 
 Second, the book emphasizes the cumulative origin of conditions such as depression and chronic anger.  Colin’s rage came from several of his past lives.  In the French Revolution he lost everything: the duke and his family died at the guillotine.  His failure as a farmer in nineteenth century Illinois also led to his irritability.   In a twentieth century life he died angry when a horse kicked him in the head.  
Many other books about reincarnation focus only upon the effects of traumatic deaths.  A child may have nightmares of being burned after he died in a past-life house fire.  An adult’s phobia, such as an unreasonable fear of water, may be traced to drowning in a previous life.  In addition, most of the cases involve only one of a person’s past lives, which limits the scope of these books.  The incarnations presented in Are We Our Past Lives? span 1700 years and include many aspects of multiple lifetimes.
How Are We Our Past Lives? Might Serve its Readers
Are We Our Past Lives? will lead to a recall of events in readers’ lives which will trigger many different emotions including joy, anger, sadness, and regret.  Some will realize the necessity of forgiving another person for an offense, and he or she might speculate about what happened in a past life.  Did the reader previously injure the transgressor?
The book will also give the reader hope.  With therapy Colin’s AD/HD and anger are under control.  Spiritual work has led to the complete resolution of Marie’s past-life karma, and depression is no longer a concern.
 By reflecting upon their personalities and relationships, and perhaps discovering how they relate to past lives, readers may make positive changes in their lives.  Some may seek a hypnotist or other therapist to explore the origin of a disorder such as chronic anxiety and receive treatment.  It is hoped this book will help remove the stigma of mental illness.   
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