By Jaye Beldo
In the mid-1990s, I bravely delved into rebirthing, a form of healing that incorporates what is called the “breath of fire,” a technique of rapidly breathing in and out of the mouth, also called “Hara breathing.” One can create and sustain an altered state of consciousness which very effectively bypasses the usual defenses of the rational mind and allows one to fully experience the surfacing of memories that have lain dormant in the unconscious mind.
After reading books on the topic by such authors as Leonard Orr and Stanislav Grof, I sought out the services of a rebirther. Setting my nagging skepticism aside, I scheduled an introductory session and she led me through the approximately two and a half-hour process. After lying down, and initiating the breathing technique, it wasn’t long before I found myself going into a non-ordinary state of awareness. My initial misgivings about the process disappeared and I felt relaxed and comfortable.
During the third session, I experienced something both unexpected and profound: being in my mother’s womb. What surfaced were “intrauterine memories” and I could actually see myself as a fetus floating in an amniotic sea.
It then occurred to me about halfway through the session that I felt very reluctant about being born and when this memory surfaced, it caused me to tense up considerably, to the point where I felt I was being asphyxiated. The rebirther repeatedly directed me to concentrate on breathing and this helped to redirect my focus from what obviously was going to be even more painful memories about to surface.
Suddenly, it felt like every muscle in my body was going to snap. I tensed involuntarily and could feel myself being pushed out of the birth canal. My body became absolutely rigid and I was scared that I would pull a tendon and injure myself. I panicked and started screaming at the top of my lungs, “Why isn’t anyone celebrating my birth!? Why am I being born in this cold and sterile hospital and why are all these ugly doctors and nurses around me?” What came out of my mouth totally shocked me.
Since my usual inhibitions were no longer operative during the rebirthing session, sheer pain, raw and primordial began to release itself from my cellular body, to the point that I thought I would lose consciousness. Through the guidance of the re-birther I was able to work through this unpleasant experience, one so overwhelmingly powerful that it shook me to the core of my being.
Still in denial about the experience afterward, I started noticing some very significant and tangible changes which made the ten sessions I did with the rebirther most worthwhile. When visiting my biological parents, I felt much more relaxed around them and not as defensive as in the past. Dreaded visits home, which would otherwise leave me depressed for days and weeks, went much better as I recovered much more quickly and felt like I had a genuine sense of self and could not be emotionally manipulated.
Even more significant, I felt much more relaxed around women in general and didn’t feel the need to “put on a show” to hide my nervousness and insecurity. I had gained an understanding of a biological function that most men would never care to delve into, not only of being born, but also, strangely, of giving birth. This understanding was on a deeply intuitive level and bypassed the so-called “rational“ mind. Since then, I’ve come to believe that unresolved birth traumas, that remain locked in the physical body in both men and women, contribute profoundly to defensive behavior, unexplained fears and self-destructive behaviors.
The rebirthing process also made me aware of why men in particular wall off emotionally and distance themselves from women. After listening to female friends’ stories of emotionally stunted boyfriends and husbands, I took it upon myself to inquire into this hard-to-explain defensiveness. I consider myself very fortunate to have a much healthier perspective on this phenomenon, one that I attribute to experiencing rebirthing, as it has helped me to be present and open in the most demanding of situations.
If you choose to explore rebirthing, it is important to take some necessary precautions. First ask yourself if you are truly ready for it and make sure the answer comes from your heart and not your ego. Then make sure the rebirther you have chosen to work with has the appropriate credentials and experience. More importantly, do not try rebirthing alone.You could cause yourself serious physical harm and most likely would not be prepared to deal with whatever traumatic memories surface.
If you do choose to embark on the transformational path described above, pay attention to what resistances you may have to experiencing rebirth. In my experience, the more resistance and protest from ego, from friends and loved ones, the better the reason to surmount these obstacles and embark on discovering what lurks within and causes both men and women to perpetuate destructive behavioral patterns, negative attitudes and the like. You will emerge from the experience feeling whole once again and truly see the world with newborn eyes!
[Jaye Beldo is an Intuitive Healer, artist, musician and writer. - M. Link]
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