Preparation for Embarkation

After souls have completed their consultations with guides and peers about the many physical and psychological ramifications of a new life and body choice, the decision to incarnate is made. It would be logical to assume that they would then go immediately  to  Earth.  This  doesn't  happen  before  a  significant  element  of preparation occurs.

By now I'm sure it is understood that souls returning from the place of life selection must not only sort out the best choice of who they are going to be in their next life, but coordinate this decision with other players in the coming drama. Using the analogy of life as being one big stage play, we will have the lead role as an actor or actress. Everything we do in the play affects other minor characters (minor because they are not us) in the script. Their parts can be altered by us and ours by them because script changes (the result of free will) can be made while the play is in progress. Those souls who are going to have a close association with us on the stage of life represent our supporting cast, each with prominent roles. But how will we know them?

The issue of how to find soulmates and other important people in their lives is of paramount concern with many clients who come to me seeking hypnotic regression. Eventually, most of my subjects answer their own questions in superconsciousness because finding these souls was an integral part of their preparations for leaving the spirit world. The space souls go to for this in the spirit world is commonly called the place  of  recognition,  or  recognition  class.  I  am  told  the  activity  here  is  like cramming for a final exam. As a result, my subjects also use the term prep-class to describe this aspect of spiritual reinforcement that occurs just before their souls embark on the passage back to Earth. The next case represents this experience.

In order to clearly understand what is behind the spiritual activity of a recognition class, perhaps the word soulmate ought to be defined. For many of us, our nearest and dearest soulmate is our spouse. Yet, as we have seen in previous cases, souls of consequence in our lives may also be other family members or a close friend. The amount of time they are with us on Earth can be long or short. What matters is the impact they have on us while here.

At the risk of oversimplifying a complex issue, our relationships can be divided into a few general categories. First, there is the kind of relationship involving love which is so deep that both partners genuinely don't see how each could live without the other. This is a mental and physical attraction which is so strong neither partner doubts that they were meant for each other.

Second, there are relationships based upon companionship, friendship, and mutual respect. Finally, we have associations based largely upon more casual acquaintances which offer some purposeful ingredient to our life. Thus, a soulmate can take many forms, and meeting people who fall into one of these categories is no game of Russian roulette.

Soulmates are designated  companions to help you and themselves accomplish mutual goals which can best be achieved by supporting each other in various situations. In terms of friends and lovers, identity recognition of kindred spirits comes from our highest consciousness. It is a wonderful and mysterious experience, both physically and mentally.

Connecting with beings we know from the spirit world, in all sorts of physical disguises, can be harmonious or frustrating. The lesson we must learn from human relationships is accepting people for who they are without expecting our happiness to be totally dependent upon anyone. I have had clients come to me with the assumption that they are probably not with a soulmate because of so much turmoil and heartbreak in their marriages and relationships. They fail to realize that karmic lessons set difficult standards for each of us and painful experiences involving the heart are deliberate tests in life. They are often of the hardest kind.

Whatever the circumstances, relationships between people are the most vital part of our lives. Is it coincidence, ESP, deja vu, or synchronicity when the right time and place come together and you meet someone for the first time who will bring meaning into your life? Was there a fleeting forgotten memory - something familiar tugging at the back of your mind? I would ask the reader to sort through those memories involving a distinctive first encounter with someone important in the past.

Was it at school? Did this individual live in your neighborhood? How about meeting him or her at work or during some recreation? Did someone introduce you, or was it a chance meeting? What did you feel at that moment?

I hate to tamper with your fond recollections of a supposedly spontaneous past meeting,  but  such  descriptions  as  chance,  happenstance,  or  impulse  aren't applicable to crucial contacts. This makes them no less romantic. In cases involving soulmates, I have heard many heartfelt accounts of close spiritual beings who journeyed across time and space to find each other as physical beings at a particular geographic spot on Earth at a certain moment. It is also true our conscious amnesia can make meeting significant people difficult and we may take a wrong turn and miss the connection at some juncture. However, there can be a prearrangement here for back-up contingencies.

In the case which follows, I will begin the dialogue at a point in the session where I am asking my subject about his spirit world activity just before rebirth into his present life.

Case 28

Dr. N: Is it close to the time when you will be leaving the spirit world for another life?

S: Yes ... I'm about ready.

Dr. N: After you left the place of life selection, was your soulmind made up as to who you would be and the people you were to meet on Earth?

S: Yes, everything is beginning to come together for me.

Dr. N: What if you had second thoughts about your choice of a time frame or a particular human body? Could you back out?

S: (sighs) Yes, and I have done that before - we all have - at least the people I know. Most of the time it's intriguing to think about being alive on Earth again.

Dr. N: But what if you resisted coming back to Earth shortly before you were due to incarnate?

S: It's not that ... rigid. I would always discuss the possibilities ... my concerns for a new life with my tutor and companions before making a firm commitment. The tutors know when we are stalling, but I have made up my mind.

Dr. N: Well, I'm glad. Now tell me, once you are firmly committed to return to Earth, does anything else of importance transpire for you in the spirit world?

S: I must go to the recognition class.

Dr. N: What is this place like for you?

S: It's an observation meeting ... with my companions ... so I can recognize them later.

Dr. N: When I snap my fingers you will go immediately to this class. Are you ready?

S: Yes, I am.

Dr. N: (snapping my fingers) Explain to me what you are doing.

S: I ... am floating in ... with the others hear the speaker.

Dr. N: I would like to accompany you, but you will have to be my eyes - is that all right?

S: Sure, but we must hurry a little.

Dr. N: How does this place appear to you?

S: Mmm ...  a circular auditorium with a raised dais in the middle - that's where the speakers are.

Dr. N: Are we going to float in and sit down on seats?

S: (shakes head) Why would we need seats?

Dr. N: Just wondering. How many souls are around us?

S: Oh ... about ten or fifteen ... people who are going to be close to me in the life to come.

Dr. N: That's all the souls you see?

S: No, you asked how many were around me. There are others ... further away in groups ... to hear their speakers.

Dr. N: Are the ten or fifteen souls around you all from your cluster group?

S: Some of them.

Dr. N: Is this gathering similar to the one near the gateway where you met a few people right after your last life?

S: Oh no, that was more quiet ... with just my family.

Dr. N: Why was that homecoming meeting more quiet than where we are now?

S: I was still in a daze from losing my body. Here, there is lots of conversation and milling around ... anticipation ... our energy is really up. Listen, we have to move along faster, I have got to hear what the speakers are saying.

Dr. N: Are these speakers your tutor-guides?

S: No, they are the prompters.

Dr. N: Are they souls who specialize in this sort of thing?

S: Yes, they give us the signs by coming up with ingenious ideas.

Dr. N: Okay, let's move in close to the prompter while you continue to tell me what is happening.

S: We form a circle around the dais. The prompter is floating back and forth in the center - pointing a finger at each of us and saying we must pay close attention. I have to do it!

Dr. N: (lowering my voice) I understand and I wouldn't want you to miss a thing, but please explain what you mean by signs.

S: This prompter is assigned to us so we will know what to look for in our next life. The signs are placed in our mind now in order to jog our memories later as humans.

Dr. N: What kind of signs?

S: Flags - markers in the road of life.

Dr. N: Could you be more specific?

S: The road signs kick us into a new direction in life at certain times when something important is supposed to happen ... and then we must know the signs to recognize one another, too.

Dr. N: And this class takes place for souls before each new life?

S: Naturally. We need to remember the little things ...

Dr. N: But haven't you already previewed the details of your next life in the place of life selection?

S: That's true, but not the small details. Besides, I didn't know all the people who would be operating with me then. This class is a final review ... bringing all of us together.

Dr. N: For those of you who will have an impact on each other's lives?

S: That's right, it's mainly a prep-class because we won't recognize each other at first on Earth.

Dr. N: Do you see your primary soulmate here?

S: (flushing) ... she is here ... and there are other people that I am supposed to contact ... or they will contact me in some way ... the others need their signs, too.

Dr. N: Oh, so that's why these souls are a mixed gathering of entities from different groups. They are all going to play some significant role in each other's new life.

S: (impatiently) Yes, but I can't listen to what is going on with you talking ... Shhh!

Dr. N: (lowering my voice again) All right, on the count of three I am going to hold this class in suspension for a few minutes so you won't miss anything. (softly) One, two, three. The speaker is now quiet while you are going to explain a little more about the flags and the signs. Okay?

S: I ... guess so.

Dr. N: I am going to call these signs memory triggers. Are you telling me there will be special triggers for each of these people with you?

S: That's why we have been brought together. There will be times in my life when these people will appear. I must try to ... remember some ... action by them ... the way they look ... move ... talk.

Dr. N: And each will trigger a memory for you?

S: Yeah, and I'm going to miss some. The signs are supposed to click in our memory right away and tell us, "Oh, good, you are here now." Inside us ... we can say to ourselves, "It is time to work on the next phase." They may seem like insignificant little things, but the flags are turning points in our lives.

Dr. N: What if people miss these road flags or signs of recognition because, like you said, you forget what the prompter told you? Or, what if you choose to ignore your inclinations and take another path?

S: (pause) We have other choices - they may not be as good - you can be stubborn, but ... (stops)

Dr. N: But, what?

S: (with conviction) After this class we usually don't forget the important signs.

Dr. N: Why don't our guides just give us the answers we need on Earth? Why all this fooling around with signs to remember things?

S: For the same reason we go to Earth without knowing everything in advance. Our soul power grows with what we discover. Sometimes our lessons get resolved pretty fast ... usually not. The most interesting part of the road are the turns and it's best not to ignore the flags in our mind.

Dr. N: All right, I am going to count from ten down to one, and when I reach one, your class will start again and you will listen while the prompter gives out signs. I will not speak until you raise the index finger of your right hand. This will be my sign that the class is over and you can relate to me the signs you are to remember. Are you ready?

S: Yes.

Note: I finish my count and wait a couple of minutes before my subject raises his finger. This is a simple example of why time comparisons between Earth and spirit worlds are meaningless.

Dr. N: That didn't take long.

S: Yes, it did. The speaker had a lot to go through with all of us.

Dr. N: I assume you have the details of recognition signs now firmly in your mind?

S: I hope so.

Dr. N: Good, then tell me about the last sign you were given as the class ended.

S: (pause) A silver pendant ... I will see it when I am seven years old around the neck of a woman on my street ... she always wore it.

Dr. N: How will this silver object be a trigger for you?

S: (abstractly) It shines in the sun ... to catch my attention ... I must remember ...

Dr. N: (in a commanding tone) You have the capacity to bring your spiritual and earthly knowledge together. (placing my hand on the subject's forehead) Why is the soul of this woman important for you to know?

S: I meet her riding my bike on our street. She smiles ... the silver pendant is bright ... I ask about it ... we become friends.

Dr. N: Then what?

S: (wistfully) I will know her only a short time before we move, but it is enough. She will read to me and talk to me about life and teach me to ... respect people ...

Dr. N: As you grow older, can people themselves be signs or provide flags to help you make a connection?

S: Sure, they might arrange introductions at the right time.

Dr. N: Do you already know most of the souls who will be meaningful people to you on Earth?

S: Yes, and if I don't, I'll meet them in class.

Dr. N: I guess they can set up love relationship meetings, too?

S: (laughs)  Oh,  the  matchmakers - yes  they  do  that,  but  meetings  can  be  for friendship ... getting people together to help your career ... that kind of stuff.

Dr. N: Then the souls who are in this auditorium and elsewhere can be involved with different kinds of associations in your life?

S: (enthusiastically) Yeah, I'm going to connect with the guy who is on my baseball team. Another one will be a farming partner - then there will be my life-long pal from grade school.

Dr. N: What if you connect with the wrong person in business, love, or whatever? Does that mean you missed a relationship sign or a red flag for an important event?

S: Hmm ... it probably won't be wrong, exactly ... it could be a jump start to get you
going in a new direction.

Dr. N: Okay, now tell me what is the most important recognition sign you must remember from this prep-class.

S: Melinda's laugh.

Dr. N: Who is Melinda?

S: My wife-to-be.

Dr. N: What is there to remember about Melinda's laugh?

S: When we meet, her laugh is going to ... sound like tiny bells ... chimes ... I really can't describe it to you. Then, the scent of her perfume when we first dance ... a familiar fragrance ... her eyes.

Dr. N: So, you are actually given more than one trigger sign for your soulmate?

S: Yes, I'm so dense I guess the prompters thought I needed more clues. I didn't want to make a mistake when I met the right person.

Dr. N: What is supposed to trigger her recognition of you?

S: (grins) My big ears ... stepping on her toes dancing ... what we feel when we first hold each other.

It is an old saying that the eyes are the windows to our soul. No physical attribute has more impact when soulmates meet on Earth. As to our other physical senses, I mentioned in an earlier chapter that souls retain such memories as sounds and smell. All five senses may be used by spiritual prompters as recognition signals in future lives.
Case 28 began to express some discomfort with my keeping him from participating in  his  spiritual  recognition  class.  I  reinforced  his visual association  of floating around a central dais in an auditorium (other people use different names). I gave my subject time to finish taking instruction and communicating with his friends and them moved him out of the place of recognition.

It is my practice never to rush clients in and out of their spiritual settings during a session because I find this hinders the intensity of concentration and recall. When we had established ourselves away from the other souls, I talked to this man about his soulmate, Melinda. I learned these two souls were most comfortable in husband and wife roles although occasionally they chose to relate differently in their lives together. Both these souls wanted to make sure they would connect on Earth in their current lives. I thought I would follow up on what actually had transpired.

Dr. N: When you and Melinda came to Earth and were young, did you live close to each other?

S: No, I lived in Iowa and she was in California ... (musing) it was Clair that I knew in Iowa.

Dr. N: Were you interested in Clair romantically?

S: Yes, I almost married her. It was close - and that would have been a mistake. Clair and I weren't right for each other, but going together in high school had become a habit.

Dr. N: And yet you left your home town for California?

S: Yes ... Clair didn't want me to go, but my parents wanted to leave our farm and move west. I liked Iowa and was uneasy about moving and torn over leaving Clair, who was still in high school.

Dr. N: Was there a road sign - a flag of some sort - which helped you make the decision to move with your parents?

S: (sighs) It was my sister who waved a red flag at me. She convinced me I would have more opportunities in the city where my parents were planning to go.

Dr. N: Do you see your sister in the spirit world?

S: Oh yeah, she is in my circle (cluster group).

Dr. N: Is Clair one of your soulmates?

S: (pause) More a friend ... just friends ...

Dr. N: Was leaving Clair hard for you?

S: Oh, yes ... even more for her. We were sexually attracted to each other in high school. The infatuation had no real mental connection ...  it's so hard on Earth to figure out what you are supposed to do with other people ... sex is a big trap ... we would have grown bored with one another.

Dr. N: Was the physical attraction different with Melinda than you had with Clair?

S: (pause) When Melinda and I met at the dance there was the strong physical attraction of her body ... and I guess she liked the way I looked, too ... but we both felt something much more ...

Dr. N: I want to get this straight. Did you and Melinda choose your male and female bodies in the spirit world deliberately to attract each other once you reached Earth?

S: (nodding) To ... some extent ... but we were attracted to each other on Earth because inside our minds was the memory of what we were supposed to look like.

Dr. N: When the time of the dance rolled around, what happened in your mind?

S: I can see it all now. Our tutor was helping Melinda and me that night. My idea to go to the dance was sudden. I hate to dance because I'm clumsy. I didn't know anybody in the town yet and felt stupid, but I was guided there.

Dr. N: Had you and Melinda scripted the dance scene together during the spiritual prep-class?

S: Yes, we knew about it then and when I saw her at the dance, alarms went off. I did something very uncharacteristic of me ... I cut in on the man she was dancing with. When I first held her my legs were like rubber.

Dr. N: And what else did you and Melinda feel at that moment?

S: As if we were in another world ... there was this familiarity ... it was so weird during that dance  ...  a knowing without doubt that something important was unfolding ... the guidance ... the intent of our meeting ... our hearts were racing ... it was enchantment.

Dr. N: Then why was Clair in your life earlier as a complication?

S: To tempt me to stay on the farm ... one of the false trails I needed to get past ... another kind of life. After I left, Clair found the right person.

Dr. N: If you and Clair had taken the lesser trail together and missed your sister's flag, would that life have been a total disaster?

S: No, but it would not have been as good. There is one main course of life we choose in advance, but alternatives always exist and we learn from them, too.

Dr. N: In your lives do you ever make mistakes and take false trails and miss the flags in the road for a job change, moving to another town, or meeting someone important because the details you saw at the place of life selection or in the recognition class were not implanted firmly enough?

S: (long pause) The signs are there. But, sometimes I overrule my ... inclinations. There are times in my lives when I change directions because of too much thinking and analysis. Or, I do nothing for the same reasons.

Dr. N: Ah, so you might do something other than what was planned in the spirit world?

S: Yeah, and it may not work out as well ... but we have the right to miss the red flags.

Dr. N: Well, I have enjoyed our talk about the place of recognition and I wondered if there is anything else this spiritual class does for you later in physical life.

S: (in a far away voice) Yes, sometimes when I am confused about my life and don't know where to turn next, I just ... imagine where I might be going compared to where I've been and ... it comes to me what to do.

Helping clients recognize people who were destined to have an impact on their lives is a fascinating aspect of my practice. I believe those who come to see me about relationships are not in my office at a certain point in their lives by chance. Am I spoiling the purpose of their spiritual recognition class by assisting these subjects in recalling clues? I don't think so, for two basic reasons. What they are not supposed to know yet probably won't be revealed in hypnosis, while on the other hand, quite a few of my clients only want confirmation of what they already suspect is true.
I can speak about recognition signs from personal experience, since I was blessed by three specific clues to help me find my wife. Thumbing through Look magazine as a teenager, I once saw a Christmas advertisement for Hamilton watches modeled by a beautiful dark-haired woman dressed in white. The caption in the ad said, "To Peggy," because she was holding a wristwatch as a gift from an imaginary husband. An odd sensation came over me, and I never forgot the name or face. On my twentyfirst birthday I received a watch of the same make from a favorite aunt.

A few years later, while attending a graduate school in Phoenix, I was washing a load of white laundry one Saturday. Suddenly, the first trigger was activated in my mind with the message, "It's time to meet the woman in white." I tried to shake it off, but the face in the ad pushed all other thoughts away. I stopped, looked at my Hamilton watch and heard the command, "Go now." I thought about who wears white. Acting as if I was obsessed, I went to the largest hospital in the city and asked at the desk for a nurse matching the name and description.

I was told there was such a person who was coming off her shift. When I saw her, I was stunned by the resemblance to the picture in my mind. Our meeting was awkward and embarrassing, but later we sat in the lobby and talked non-stop for four hours as old friends who hadn't seen each other for a while - which, of course, was true. I waited until after we were married to tell my wife about the reason I came to her hospital and the clues given to me to find her. I didn't want her to think I was crazy. It was then I learned that on the day of our first meeting she had told her astonished friends, "I just met the man I'm going to marry."

My advice to people about meaningful encounters is not to intellectualize coming events too much. Some of our best decisions come from what we call instinct. Go with your gut feelings at the time. When a special moment is meant to happen in life, it usually does.

One of the last requirements before embarkation for many souls is to go before the Council of Elders for the second time.

While some of my subjects see the Council only once between lives, most see them right after death and just before rebirth. The spirit world is an environment personified by order and the Elders want to reinforce the significance of a soul's goals for the next life. Sometimes my clients tell me they return to their spirit group after this meeting to say goodbye while others say they leave immediately for reincarnation. The latter procedure was used by a subject who described this exit meeting in the following manner.

"My guide, Magra, escorts me to a soft, white space which is like being in a cloud-filled enclosure. I see my committee of three waiting for me as usual. The middle Elder seems to have the most commanding energy. They all have oval faces, high cheekbones, no hair and smallish features. They seem to me to be sexless - or rather they appear to blend from male to female and back. I feel calm. The atmosphere is formal but not unfriendly. Each in turn asks me questions in a gentle way. The Elders are all-knowing about my entire span of lives but they are not as directive as one might think. They want my input to assess my motivations and the strength of my resolve towards working in new body.

I am sure they have had a hand in the body choices I was given for the life to come because I feel they are skilled strategists in life selection. The committee wants me to honor my contract. They stress the benefits of persistence and holding to my values under adversity. I often give in too easily to anger and they remind me of this while reviewing my past actions and reactions towards events and people. The Elders and Magra give me inspiration, hope and encouragement to trust myself more in bad situations and not let things get out of hand. And then, as a final act to bolster my confidence when I am about to leave, they raise their arms and send a power bolt of positive energy into my mind to take with me."

One aspect of the two council meetings which I initially found rather odd is that members of the same soul group do not necessarily go before the same panel. For a while I assumed there would always be a correlation here because ail members of a single soul group have the same guide. I was wrong. In the minds of my subjects, even senior guides are thought to be a couple of steps below the developmental level of the omnipotent beings who make up their councils. They are similar to the Old Ones that Thece told us about in Chapter 11, but with more specific responsibilities toward life evaluation of souls. While a guide might, in some respects, be considered a personal confidant to a soul this same familiarity does not extend to an Elder. In time, I came to appreciate that an Elder's authority, unlike that of guides, involves a cross-section of souls from many groups.

Apparently, everyone in a soul group respects the intensely private nature of these roceedings. They all see their individual Council of Elders as godly. The Elders are bathed in bright light and the whole setting has an aura of divinity. A subject put it this way, "when we are taken into the presence of these superior beings who exist in such a high spiritual realm, it validates our feelings about the source of creation."