Whitton, Dr Joel - Case history Heather Whiteholme 06
Type of spiritual experience
A description of the experience
Life between Life – Dr Joel Whitton and Joe Fisher
Self-hypnosis revealed a French noblewoman named Evangeline journeying into Castile, where she met, fell in love with, and subsequently married a Spanish nobleman who was already betrothed to a woman Heather recognized as her mother in this life.
An arch-rivalry developed between the two women, which culminated in a successful conspiracy against Evangeline involving the feared Office of the Inquisition. Heather's stomach rebelled as she transcribed the trance experience which recorded Evangeline's last hours in the dungeon of the Alcazar in Segovia, Spain:
Flashes of confusing scenes ebb away and I am left with the sight of flaming torches set into brackets in the dungeon walls. More light comes from a glowing brazier; brands and pincers are thrust into the coals. The smell of burning flesh hangs in the air. In a far corner, a dark-haired woman is talking to some burly men wearing hoods . . . Evangeline is suspended by her wrists from iron cuffs attached by chains to the ceiling. Her arms look as though they have been pulled from her shoulder sockets; her head has fallen forward. She is stripped to the waist, and her skin is scorched and bruised. Her eyes have been burned out. Evangeline's limp body is taken down, wrapped in burlap, and removed to a cell. Long after the cell door is secured, she starts to regain consciousness and, later still, rats appear and begin to gnaw at her body, Barely alive, she is unable to chase the rats away. . .
This scene left Heather in a state of upheaval. She wrote:
I was screaming in this trance and ready to throw up . . .Why is it that I seem to pick up all the effects of these scenes? I am having great difficulty typing. My arms feel limp and almost useless . . .
Heather's recognition of her mother as the 'dark haired woman' in the dungeon galvanized Dr Whitton's interest, and he pressed for information on the mother-daughter relationship in this life. There was lots to give. Materially Heather's childhood had been a sumptuous and inexhaustible banquet. Emotionally, however, she was starved of affection and encouragement by an intensely jealous mother who, displaying an attitude of chilling resemblance to that of the Jilted Spanish fiancee, saw her daughter as competition that must be beaten and demoralized. '
My mother hated me doing art more than anything else,' Heather remembers. This spirit of obstruction prevailed throughout childhood and continued into her university years. In her early forties, as Heather struggled with the worst phase of her degenerative illness, 'every discouraging word my mother had ever said came tumbling back. I felt I was unworthy and didn't deserve to be happy.' At last details were emerging that were fundamental to the therapeutic consultation that was to follow.
Dr Whitton was now almost certain that Heather's remaining psychological problems stemmed not from her past incarnations but from her unhappy childhood. And while he felt that orthodox therapy would relieve the symptoms that remained, he first wanted Heather to gain as many insights as possible into the meaning of her current life. That meant ushering her into the bardo that bridged the lives of Isobel and Heather.
In earthbound terms, this between-life stay was brief - less than ten months separated Isobel's death in the winter of 1933 and Heather's birth in the summer of 1934. In a diary entry dated December 3, 1980, Heather described her sojourn in meta-consciousness, beginning with Isobel's surrender to the stormy English Channel:
I could see Isobel's body floating in a dark, broiling sea. There was a massive storm raging. I knew that I had once been Isobel but now I didn't have a body. I was floating in all-embracing golden light. I felt comfortable and warm and untouched by the elements. Even though I didn't have a body I felt quite whole and at one with my surroundings. I realized I could see in all directions. Looking at Isobel's body, I felt no emotions. I felt no fear and no loneliness, although I seemed to be alone. Then the light spread and I appeared to be moving up. I felt tremendous warmth and love and happiness. All around me was golden light, as though I were basking in very bright sunshine. There was no division, no separateness. All was one. It was incredibly beautiful and peaceful. I saw flashes of pastel rainbow hues and heard hundreds of voices singing simple but beautiful melodies. I just floated there happily, feeling I was a part of it all, that I truly belonged.
Heather was sorely tempted to remain adrift in this delicious, light-filled boundlessness. But her need for answers prevailed, and the bliss could not be sustained as Isobel's karmic script was revealed.
This indicated a life that would have embraced a long and brilliantly creative musical career had Isobel only followed her chosen path. Recordings, concerts in London and Paris, and a series of compositions were all there, only awaiting the required effort in order to be fulfilled. But Isobel, wandering far from her interlife intentions, had flung open the door to chaos and misery and squandered all prospect of rewarding growth.
From what Heather could glean from the inter-life, her current life was hastily assembled as an emergency measure; she was almost wrenched into being to cope with the karmic repercussions of Isobel’s misspent and prematurely curtailed existence. Her allergies, she learned, were more than a legacy of the unresolved trauma of the car accident. Their role was to provide the impetus that would force her to make amends with her past. Of course, had Isobel not been diverted by the prodigal life, Heather would never have existed.
'I picked up from the inter-life,' she noted, 'that Isobel would have died just recently as a happy, successful lady and great grandmother. If only she had been patient and persevering, she could have had it all.' Nevertheless all the 'if onlys' and 'might have beens' are of no practical consequence. Isobel's actions had created the very personification of her karma - a new being called Heather who was also equipped with a script detailing her intention to grapple with the repercussions of past-life deeds.
Having been made aware in the inter-life that she had chosen to make reparation for Isobel's deficiencies, Heather sought clarification on the major thrust of her life's work. And this led to an electrifying encounter with members of the judgement board, who revealed themselves at the far end of a vast temple The Three were in the guise of the Egyptian deities Ra, Osiris and Isis . . .
As I entered the temple, I picked up the rattle of the sistrum, which became more and more persistent. Also there was the sound of flutes and hand cymbals . . . beautiful and elusive at the same time. I walked forward straight to Isis. She was incredibly tall and communicated without words. She told me I must pursue my artistic endeavours, that as I worked I would find my answers .
. . The soul's glimpse of the forthcoming incarnation as Heather was far from stimulating, however. All the indications pointed to her experiencing a dismal conglomerate of frustration, rejection and tears. Even more disturbing was the unsolicited recommendation as to her best choice of womb. It was the last thing Heather wanted to hear . . .
All of a sudden I felt horror and fear. I begged not to be born to my mother, but I received the impression that this was part of what I had to repay because of Isobel. I cannot describe my terror. Then I saw my grandmother, whom I recognized from a happier incarnation, and I started to feel a little better. I loved her and looked forward to seeing her again.
The source of the experience
Concepts and Symbols used in the text or image
Observation contributed by: Rosie Rock-Evans