What’s so exciting about life between lives — LBLs? Is it a contradiction? Is it life after death or something else? Let’s unpack the facts of what we know.
By David Stone
Skeptical about so many flamboyant New Age claims, I opened Dr. Michael Newton’s book Journey of Souls: Case Studies of Life Between Lives, eager but expecting disappointment, remembering the value of an open mind.
Newton writes — not flamboyant at all — about his discovery of “life between lives,” an undescribed territory where souls have roots to which they return, again and again, a universe discovered, like Christopher Columbus stumbling onto America while trying for India and enriching spices.
I was looking for something else.
When I was young, my curiosity about life after death, NDEs and past lives was intermittent. The here and now kept me busy, and honestly, being mocked by my best friend sidelined my search.
Related: What happens when you die?
My religious beliefs were agnostic. I didn’t trust religions, but at the same time, I was sure of more to life than what we knew so far, an ineffable something else that inspires and informs us.
How strange it would be if, ignorant about so many other things, we understood God and the afterlife? There was much to learn.
Time and experience forced questions forward.
I outlived my parents, other older relatives and friends. My brother and my high school sweetheart died when both were, in my opinion, way too young.
Losing them made me think hard about things taken for granted, specifically about the event Tennyson called “crossing the bar.”
So, What Is Life Between Lives?
Was it possible that vibrant characters, full of life and emotion, engaged with friends and family… just disappeared into a bottomless nothing?
But that felt less likely than much of the debunked fantasies religions preach.
The idea of something more wasn’t simply wishful thinking. It was intuition plus observation.
Even in life, it felt like there was something more, some impulse, something unseen. Didn’t we always know intuitively that there were at least two coordinated but separate things, our bodies and us?
Looking around, I found the confident cynicism of the atheist crowd unconvincing and, at times, even deliberately unaware. And most of the stock answers religions clung too lacked resonance.
I’m a dreamer and a poet who loves the way science sees through and around walls and finds hidden things. For that reason, Michael Newton’s stories of life between lives, collected and cataloged with scientific care, were deeply satisfying, even to a skeptic like me.
Almost everyone seems to have a conviction about a life — or no life — beyond death, but mostly, their reasons are more passionate than factual.
What we learn from Michael Newton’s discoveries along with those of his colleagues is different, based on real world experience and carefully documented reports.
The topic of Dr. Michael Newton, the souls his subjects revealed and what it all means about the existence of something apart from our everyday activities, energized me and opened the door to a new universe of discovery.
What is Life Between Lives? The Beginning – Journey of Souls
I first read Dr. Newton’s books Journey of Souls. There was a lot that intrigued me and some things about it that dampened my enthusiasm.
Start with the subtitle: Case Studies of Life Between Lives. A little too flat for a subject with so much mystery and exciting possibility.
Was avoiding criticism for sensationalizing such a strange topic, giving it an academic twist?
The stories, too, were a little dry for all of that, but in the end, the objective, scientific coolness is exactly what sold me.
Dr. Newton wasn’t trying to make a case for followers on some spiritual quest. He was reporting on what he’d found in his practice. And profound it was.
Let me say it again: If there is any proof of eternal life and a deity that inspires it, this is it.
What happens when we die? Do we live again? And what’s the time between lives like? What are we doing there?
The initial stories are factual and enlightening in context, but in fact, only a foundation of more to come.
One thing that made me uneasy about Dr. Newton’s first book was it referred to schools, classes and even grades.
But that, he realized and clarified in Destiny of Souls, was the unavoidable result of souls in a nonphysical universe trying to describe it in physical terms.
What is life between lives? Seeing the Light
Dr. Newton does not believe that there are brick walled schoolhouses and roll top desks.
He believes that souls in regression frame things in the only terms they have, approximations of real physical objects.
Among the things subjects consistently brought back from their between lives sessions are soul groups. Soul groups are a kind of family with a diverse range of others sharing similar goals, its members helping each other in their life questions.
And there are soul mates with whom we share many lives and return to consider and plan for the next. We have soul guides and councils of elders that help us evaluate our experiences, what we learned and what more we need to know.
It’s in this second book that the sheer volume of accumulated stories with striking similarities grabs you and answers your skepticism well.
I spent much of my life writing creatively. I’ve always been aware of a part of me that loves scientific discovery. I read more science these days than I do poetry.
For that reason, it’s hard when you’ve trained yourself to look at things from all sides. Some sides are squishy. Not solid or easy to get your arms around.
After finishing Destiny of Souls, I was satisfied — as a skeptic, an amateur scientist and also as a poet.
Not only are there more stories of peoples adventures in the afterlife, but they are more fleshed out. How this universe relates to the one in which we live becomes clearer and more intriguing.
Dr. Michael Newton Bumps Into Another Dimension
A Man of Science Discovers Something Really Strange
One thing that got me (and almost lost me) was Dr. Newton’s calm, scientifically documented approach.
While plenty of people spout off about life after death and claim to understand what it’s all about, they lack what Dr. Newton has: credentials, and the credibility earned from a scientific approach.
Before life between lives jumped out and, more or less, forced him to discover them, Dr. Newton worked as a licensed psychological counselor who used hypnotherapy as a tool.
He was an atheist.
Experience with a subject led him reluctantly to try past life regression therapy, a practice in hypnosis that takes patients back to previous incarnations.
In what the patient believes is an earlier existence, the therapist helps them explore events that might lead to present day trauma.
Then, one day, while he was regressing a woman haunted by feelings of profound loneliness, something startling happened. After searching unsuccessfully for roots in her past lives, the woman suddenly brightened.
She was, she told Dr. Newton, with her friends.
She said they were all there in the room, and she pointed them out by name.
After scrambling around a little bit, Dr. Newton was able to ascertain that she was not in any of her past lives, she was between them, embraced by her soul family.
Dr. Michael Newton Shares The Stage – Memories of the Afterlife
For Memories of the Afterlife, Michael Newton steps aside to let his colleagues at the Newton Institute share their own patients stories in stories from the afterlife.
In Memories of the Afterlife, Michael Newton steps aside to let his colleagues at the Newton Institute share their own patients stories in stories from the afterlife.
Each therapist picks a favorite case and a specific theme to shed expanded light on the amazing LBL stories.
Ever the conscientious academic and leader, Dr. Newton acts as editor, stepping in from time to time to clarify a point and to keep things in context.
These stories are often thrilling and, on the whole, more stimulating than what has come before. It’s the last book in this series, and I hated to see it end, even as it so thoroughly expanded my own awareness.
Opinion by David Stone