Des. Many books have been based on information channeled by psychics from the after-death state, some of which went on to become international best sellers.
Most recently the Conversations With God series by Neale Donald Walsch captured public imagination. The Seth series by Jane Roberts was well-known in the 1970s and 1980s. Ruth Montgomery’s books were salient in the mind-body-spirit genre from the 1960s through to the 1980s. Edgar Cayce’s name was dominant during the last 50 years of the twentieth century. The Spiritualist authors Maurice Barbanell and Arthur Ford continue to enjoy popularity in their field.
Science and psychology, however, rarely glanced in the direction of the after-death environment, due largely to deeply-ingrained professional prejudice: “We know it’s just superstition, and we don’t investigate superstition”.
Fortunately there are exceptions. Allan L Botkin, PhD, Director of the Centre for Grief and Traumatic Loss in Libertyville, Illinois, encountered undeniable evidence while working for 20 years as a psychologist in a Veterans Administration hospital in Chicago. His experiences of after-death encounters with combat veterans from WWII, Korea, Vietnam and Desert Storm, were so compelling that his research was supported by a phalanx of psychological and psychiatric authorities – all internationally-acknowledged leaders in their field. These included Dr Raymond Moody, Dr Bruce Greyson, Bill Guggenheim, and the theologian Professor Ralph Leonard. Their findings were brought together by Professor R Craig Hogan. Many, many other members of the psychological community joined their ranks as the journey continued. In his 2005 book on “induced after-death communications” (IADC), Botkin discussed the fact that he and several dozen colleagues helped “many thousands of clients” make contact with spirit personalities. He went on to state that “it worked for nearly everyone” with whom he conducted sessions. The clients involved, and the research staff, possessed no psychic or mediumistic abilities whatsoever, and came from a broad spectrum of society.
The following case history published by Botkin is dramatic, complex and comprehensive, more so than is typical. I lifted it from his files [and comprehensively rewrote it] to show what can be achieved with the technique. The various cases discussed are not restricted to patients from the vet’s hospital.
During Client’s childhood his father physically and sexually assaulted him and his two sisters in the most appalling manner. So great was his continuing trauma and anxiety that he had difficulty even discussing the matter with the psychotherapist. Father would bring drunken friends home, who abused the terrified children at will. One of Client’s sisters, while still a teenager, killed herself. The other sister did the same just before Client presented for therapy. During IADC, Botkin’s client came face to face with the sister who only recently committed suicide. With tears in his eyes, he explained to Botkin how happy she looked: “It’s the first time I’ve seen her happy, although she is sorry for the distress her suicide caused”. Brother and sister went on to discuss other family members who died, and she provided encouragement and advice to him. That night Client dreamed vividly that his father was begging forgiveness, as his sisters looked on from a distance. Interestingly, Father was in an area of darkness, while the sisters were standing smiling in bright light. In the dream the sisters then approached and said, “Forgive Father, not for him but for you”. During Client’s next session with Dr Botkin, he confronted his father. He found himself pushing the other away. Father’s presence was offensive. But the spirit personality looked so distraught. For the first time Client felt an awareness that his father carried the suffering he had caused: he lived it. A discussion followed. Later Client explained to Botkin: “He seemed so pitiful, so sorry. He kept repeating it. He’d resorted to such appalling behaviour because that’s how his father treated him. I really feel forgiveness is possible. I know why he did these things.” IADC therapy continued for several more sessions, before Client was completely reconciled and comfortable. He told Botkin with a smile, that he would always take with him the love and warmth the sisters offered as they hugged him during his final session.
Another client, a psychologist, was a skeptic who nevertheless included IADC in her clinical practice. So intrigued was she with the results she decided to contact Botkin. She wanted to talk to her father, with whom there had been issues. Without effort she made contact: “He was younger and fitter, and looked quite peaceful, quite unlike the father I remembered”. Client came by an awareness that, for all his shortcomings, Father had carried a deep committment to the family and done his best. He mentioned he was calmly awaiting the arrival of his elderly wife, Client’s mother. At the one-year follow-up, Client reported that emotionally her life was more balanced and comfortable as the result of the IADC. No longer was the skeptic skeptical!
A further case of a skeptic undergoing an IADC experience, relates to a cardiac surgeon who loudly proclaimed, “The whole after-death thing is just a flight of fancy”, even before he knew what was involved. He had been referred to Botkin by a group working with the grief process. Client was a member of the group and continued to struggle unsuccessfully with the painful death of his brother five years before. Discussing his distress, Client was sad, embittered and angry. He needed someone to blame, an indication he was suffering from a fixation that was inhibiting a healthy resolution of the conflict. His parents were the focus of his fury. However the session was a complete success. Afterwards he appeared tired but relaxed. Almost reluctantly he smiled. The tension was gone. But abruptly, as though remembering his prejudices, he sat upright and snapped, “Yes, I was talking to my brother. He said not to blame anyone for his death, he was okay. But it was all imagination. You don’t expect me to believe that stuff, do you?” A short time later Botkin contacted the grief resolution group, and was informed the surgeon had improved so dramatically he was no longer a member.
A history professor appearing in Botkin’s files failed several times with IADC. Assisted by Botkin she persisted. Eventually she encountered her mother, whose death she continued to grieve. The professor revealed that she was healed by a single sentence spoken by her mother, so powerful were the emotions that accompanied the words. This is a well-known feature of IADC. The deceased frequently carries with her very presence a strange comfort, a serenity, a sense that everything is okay and as it should be. Sometimes no words are necessary. At other times they provide guidance. Almost always forgiveness and love and peace are conveyed. Even the glimpse of a loved one, radiant with happiness, can heal and give a feeling of release that Client has sought for years. There are many, many other case histories in Dr Botkin’s files.
As a specialist in psychotherapy and neurotherapy with the trance state, I regularly use the modality with clients. I also developed a new delivery mechanism and protocols for both EMDR and IADC, so a person is able to entrance him- or herself and use Self-EMDR and self-IADC. This enabled me to “follow” my wife when she died in 2007.