Reincarnation therapy

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Reincarnation therapy or regression therapy is an esoteric alternative medicine method based on reincarnation teachings . In the scientific and legal sense, this method is not recognized as psychotherapy or healing , but it is quite popular with esotericists.

Reincarnation therapy assumes that reincarnation and further development of a soul exist over a multitude of earth lives. Current psychological and physical problems can be caused by previous incarnations. Memories of past lives are possible. Learning from previous lives is also possible (Western interpreted karma teaching ). Entanglements with traumas from previous earthly lives can also be resolved in the present life through love and forgiveness. As a result, greater awareness and healing can also be achieved in the client's current earth life.


The concept of reincarnation (rebirth) exists in the world religions Hinduism and Buddhism , to which a total of about 1.5 billion people belong. According to statistics from 1999, there are also around 10 to 30% of the population of Christian-influenced western states. The regression therapy discussed here is, however, to be viewed as irrelevant in cultures that traditionally believe in reincarnation - it is a Western concept of the 1970s.

Imaginations of regression into earlier lives appeared in early hypnosis attempts. Well-known forerunners of today's regression therapy were the British psychiatrist Alexander Cannon and his Brazilian colleague Inácio Ferreira , who tried to explain the current problems of their clients with past trauma.

The first psychiatrist to treat patients in this way and to publish about them was the British Denys Kelsey , who published the first book on regression therapy in 1968. But his methods were still those of earlier hypnotherapy. In the mid-1960s , Alexander Gosztonyi worked with therapeutic regressions in Zurich . He later presented his findings in several works. Between 1966 and 2005, the US-based psychiatrist Ian Stevenson published on this subject: He documented statements by children who reported "memories of previous lives" without hypnosis. Stevenson's publications and lectures went a long way in making reincarnation and reincarnation therapy known to a wider Western audience. Winafred Lucas , Roger Woolger , Trisha Caetano and Hans TenDam (member of EARTh - European Association for Regression Therapy ) also published and taught about the then rapidly expanding field. American reincarnation therapists are Michael Newton , Morris Netherton , Brian L. Weiss , Bryan Jameison, and Maxwell Maltz . As German representatives could Thorwald Dethlefsen , Ruediger Dahlke , Jan-Hendrik Günter , defiance Hardo , Jan Erik Sigdell , Christoph von Keyserlingk and Baldur Ebertin be mentioned.


So-called repatriations, also offered in one-off sessions that are offered without a therapeutic objective, possibly also without the therapeutic qualification of the person returning, are only used for "internal inspection". Providers of regression hypnosis, on the other hand, apply with the promise of alleviating or resolving problems in current life through supposed remembering, including prenatal trauma or even trauma that was attached to “a previous life”. The costs of a regression therapy, which, in contrast to individual regressions, extends over several weeks and several sessions, averages 3,000 euros.

A light trance is required to experience regression . The client can be led into this in different ways. Possible options are hypnosis , holotropic breathing , meditation , binaural beats and the hemispherical synchronization method. Some people can put themselves into a trance even without such a method.

A regression therapy begins with a detailed preliminary talk in which the questions that the client wants to clarify in his regression are discussed. Then the client is usually only led into his own childhood. Thereafter, the therapist guides the client to the place in the past life to which they wish to travel to have their questions answered. After looking at some past lives, it is also possible to look at the time in the hereafter between the individual lives.

Many reincarnation therapists emphasize that the aim of such therapy is not to check the truth of a client's fantasies. Rather, it is about tracking down entanglements that are anchored in the subconscious and impair the free development of the personality. If these entanglements could be resolved, this would have a beneficial effect on the client. The reincarnation can also only be used as a pure working hypothesis. Some providers, such as Brian Weiss, even lead their clients into future lives as a category of a pure working hypothesis.


Since reincarnation is not a scientifically proven fact, therapy based on this idea has no solid basis either.

Risks of the method

The dangers of reincarnation therapy lie in the fact that some of its methodological core elements (e.g. regression under hypnosis ) are considered to be highly risky, especially in the case of mentally unstable people. For this reason, regression therapies are not recognized as a method of psychotherapy by professional psychotherapeutic associations. In particular, the dangers of an uncontrolled regression are considered particularly explosive. Reincarnation therapies, especially when used for the purpose of treating mental disorders , are undisputedly unscientific with considerable risks (e.g. malignant regression, complications in hypnotic states, psychotic derailments, pathological collusion, loss of the client's ability to control himself, continued suggestibility and omission of seeing doctors and licensed psychotherapists).

Insufficient medical knowledge

Since the terms reincarnation therapist and regression therapist are not protected, these services are also offered by people who in many cases have no medical, psychological or psychotherapeutic training. There is a risk that medical contraindications will not be recognized or that psychological problems resulting from the experience of repatriation will not be treated with the due care. If you want to protect yourself in Germany from healers with insufficient medical knowledge, you should make sure that the regression therapist you entrust yourself to has a license to practice as a doctor, psychotherapist or a license as an alternative practitioner or alternative practitioner for psychotherapy .

Cryptomnesia as an explanatory approach

Cryptomnesia is suggested by critics of reincarnation therapy as a possible explanation. By this one understands the recalling of experiences hidden in the memory.


Web links

Wiktionary: reincarnation therapy  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations

Individual evidence

  1. Jan Erik Sigdell : Reincarnation Therapy : Emotional liberation through regression. Heyne. 2006.
  2. Helmut Zander: History of the transmigration of souls in Europe . Darmstadt. 1999. pp. 598-602.
  3. Denys Kelsey: Now and Then: Reincarnation, Psychiatry, and Daily Life. Trencavel Press. 2007.
  4. ^ Ian Stevenson: Children Who Remember Previous Lives: A Question of Reincarnation. Jefferson. 2001.
  5. website of EARTh - European Association for Regression Therapy.
  6. Oliver Schröm: Brown esotericism on the advance: Many books from the New Age scene paint a racist worldview. Time online. May 28, 1998.
  7. Thorwald Dethlefsen: Life after life. Conversations with the born again. 3. Edition. 1985. p. 9. ISBN 3-442-11748-8
  8. Regina Walter: Reincarnation therapy is not safe. The standard. 1st of March 2013.
  9. Brian L. Weiss: The numerous lives of the soul: The chronicle of a reincarnation therapy. Gold man. 2009.
  10. Jan-Henrik Günter: Healing the soul with reincarnation therapy. Hugendubel. 2007.
  11. Ingo Michael Simon: Repatriations: Guide to Reincarnation Therapy. Norderstedt. 2009.
  12. Markus Hochgerner (ed.): Gestalt therapy. Vienna. 2004.