a woman sent us a fascinating letter. She had done an
internet search on "reincarnation" because
she was finding it difficult to believe the story that
her four-year-old son was telling her.
says that this little boy has always been frightened
of the shower. Whenever she takes him where he can see
the showerhead, he screams and goes into hysterics.
She had no idea what could have created this unreasonable
afternoon, she suggested that he take a shower instead
of a tub bath. She says, "He told me a story that
sent chills up and down my spine and made me cry."
Her four-year-old son said to her, "I don't want
to die, Mommy." She was shocked, and asked what
he was talking about?
said, "I died in the shower with my other mommy.
The army men made me and Mommy go in the shower with
all the other people, and we died."
concluded her letter by saying that the first thing
that came to her mind, of course, was the horror of
the Holocaust. However, she had never allowed her child
to watch anything on television that dealt with that
period of history.
wrote us to ask whether she should believe her son's
story, or whether it was just the product of an overly
creative mind. I think most reasonable people would
agree that a story like this is far beyond the imaginative
capabilities of the average four-year-old. But what
authenticates this memory is the phobia to which the
story is attached.
those of us who believe in reincarnation, this type
of recall is not surprising. For those who have fought
the idea of past lives, this child's witness to these
events, which he could not possibly know about otherwise,
must give them reason to reconsider their doubts. For
me, there is no longer any question that we have all
lived multiple lives. And this leads us to consider
phobias in a new light.
of us have our personal phobias. How do we deal with
them -- as nuisances, as an example of personal cowardice,
as a legacy from poor upbringing? How often do we see
them as indicators of a past, which we might otherwise
totally ignore? If we go for therapy, do we approach
our cure through standard Jungian analysis, or do we
have the courage to attack these fears with a past-life
if we have a child with unreasoning fears, do we belittle
the fear, try to talk them out of it, gloss it over
and wish it would go away? Or do we have the sensitivity
to listen to them deeply, to take their stories seriously,
to help them put their fears in a larger context, which
could provide healing on a much broader scale?
gives us many signs to demonstrate his love and caring
for us. Perhaps to that list we should add phobias.
Growth often comes only when we confront our worst fears.
John W. Sloat 2005