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Downton Abby from a Past Life Perspective

I have really enjoyed the BBC series Downton Abby.  The clothing, the technology, the furniture, the architecture, the lifestyle, and the attitudes are all so familiar and comfortable to me.  We have so many wonderful things now, but we have lost so much in this past 100 years.  I could so easily walk into that world as Manfred or Siegfried although it is set in the U.K., which was I think somewhat more repressive or perhaps more restrictive than Europe.  Especially for women.   And as Manfred or Siegfried I’m not really sure I even thought about how women lived and what they could and could not do.  We all had rules that we had to live by and that was the way things were.

What strikes me as being so familiar about the lifestyle of the Lord and Lady Grantham and their immediate family is how they lived.  Taking time to go for walks on the property, horseback riding, sitting with family and guests for tea, meals, and after dinner conversation, so much of this is lost.  While Manfred did not live as a British Earl of the time, he did have a very nice home and a title that afforded him the ability to have doors opened to him.  Siegfried on the other hand was high nobility and lived on a hillside castle manor house with huge grounds that included a private lake and a house full of servants, so my experiences there may be more akin to the Downton Abby story, but Manfred was alive during the first part of the series unlike Siegfried who lived about 60 years earlier.

Another familiar aspect of the life during the time period of the Downton Abby series is the commitment that people made towards their personal honor.   I find that so lacking now.  Honor and personal pride is not just for the upper classes and their high social circles and grand living, it is how a man or woman takes pride in the things they do and the way they are in the world.  It is important for the household staff to be dressed sharply and be professional for themselves as professionals.  Their position seems demeaning or meaningless to outsiders but to them they are professional housekeepers, butlers, footmen, maids, valets with a code of ethics and a standard of performance.  They do not wish to have one among them that sullies their reputation or ruins the morale of their team.  I often think that modern Americans take a snobby and somewhat ignorant attitude towards these hard working souls.  I think that most Americans take an uninformed attitude towards the nobility as well.  I was a nobleman as Manfred and Siegfried, and I do not ever recall lording over others my status or title unless it was absolutely necessary.  That sort of pretentious behavior was rarely ever required or desired.  We all had a role to fill just as Lord Grantham reminds his future heir that if he suddenly deemed his valet to be obsolete that he would be denying that man his trade in life.  Sometimes so called high ideals can be very costly to the people that they are meant to assist.

Another aspect that I notice is the great change in women from the past to the present.  And I am not trying to be mean here, but I think the women of the past often seemed more feminine and beautiful.  It’s not that modern women are not sexy, but something is very different and it’s somewhat sad like they have lost something.  I am not completely sure of what that was or is.  I recall from my past all sorts of women who had varying degrees of personality traits with some being very bold and intelligent and others shy and somewhat naive, but both kinds retained this unknown quality from the past.  Perhaps modern women are less focused or are more stressed than their earlier counterparts.  In these times women are expected to be mothers, be fashionable, obtain a higher education, be successful, and obtain a money earning occupation while doing all of the aforementioned tasks.   Do modern women truly have any time for friendship?

For that matter do modern men of this so called western culture have time for friendship?  I think we live in very lonely times despite all our technologies for rapid communication.  Perhaps this is the quality of life that I see so desirable in the Downton Abby series.  These people make time to spend quality time with each other and do not dash off to make a cell phone call, text during a meal, or ignore another while chatting or playing games on a computer.  I guess I must be anachronistic.

Rittmeister © 2012

For more information about the BBC Series Downton Abby click here.

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Past influence the Present

Does the past influence the present?  And if so how much does it affect the present?  More research has been done concerning past life experiences and present day maladies such as strange irrational phobias that do not seem to be centered in any present day experience.   I have seen reference to psychologists doing past life regression or hypnosis to discover possible roots for unusual fears or concerns.  And I think this effort is not wasted time.   I have an extreme dislike for walking in the mud to the point where I will walk around it or completely avoid it by not continuing on a pathway.  I had somewhat assumed that this attitude was me just being fussy about my clothes, but the origins of this dislike goes to a situation in a past life where I had to walk into the mud to retrieve proof of victories.

“Mud in Your Eye” by James Dietz from http://odeclonje.tumblr.com/ website.

As Manfred I had to prove at times that a victory was mine, which meant either capturing (or saving from the ground troops) the pilot and or getting a piece of the downed plane.  Often the poor pilot would land or crash in some god forsaken area like No Man’s Land, which was an area void of vegetation and any kind of life.  The ground was turned and churned into a thick muck littered with war materials some of which would be corpses of men and animals.  An unpleasant experience of sinking into the wet soil that would have sickening crunches that one could never know was a tree branch or a bone.  The smell was often moldy or swampy and then occasionally acrid with the stench of flesh rotting.  And to make matters worse, it seemed as if the Earth did not want to allow one to proceed or escape from its clutches as if it wanted to make you a part of the loathsome vastness of No Man’s Land.

It brings a grimace to my face just thinking about it.  And generally, once you arrived at your destination, you would find the remains of another soldier much like yourself in a mangled condition.  It was hard to force that image and reality away to be able to do what must be done.  And yes, sometimes we found living pilots and observers in their wrecked planes.  If they were really lucky, then they were not too injured and could be escorted back to the airbase.  In more difficult situations, one might find themselves having to decide if euthanasia was the best way to handle a situation.  No warrior wants to sit for hours in pain waiting to die.  I don’t think I ever had to euthanize any of my aerial victories.

But I digress from the topic at hand, which is does the past affect the present.  I think the answer is yes based upon my own experiences.  I now know why I react the way I do to mud.  And I can respect that reaction even though it may seem a bit irrational for this current lifetime.  Understanding how the past can affect the present is very useful whether it is used to treat some sort of so called malady or using experience to find inspiration for a present lifetime.

A common poor landing. For some reason many biplanes were very nose heavy – especially the Tri-Fokker!

I have often wished that I had been able to realize sooner that I had past life memories.  I think it would have been an asset during my undergraduate years.  I think it would have given me focus and drive, and I would have not wasted so much time on irrelevant things and people.  I think my direction in life and strengths would have been much clearer and would have acted as a guide for me to explore what I could do with the present.   I can look back and see the clues were there but I was ignoring them because of the current popular social norms concerning reincarnation.  At least now I am more mature and not so easily a victim of other peoples’ values and I can enjoy and benefit from being me.

Typical devastation of the landscape after a battle. No trees, mud, stagnant water, no animals, no vegetation, corpses, and left over war materials.

The Influence of Photos & Images on Past Life Memory Recall

I came across an artist’s blog where he paints and presents an accelerated film of his painting process, which is quite enjoyable to watch.  But there is something about his paintings that makes me always think about my First World War lifetime as a pilot.   None of his images that I have seen are of wartime imagery, so I am somewhat perplexed as to why I should think of that time so often when I watch his films of painting.  He has mentioned in some of his blogs about using a limited palette of color, but that would imply that I took an avid interest in painting during the war, which I kinda doubt I had time for.  It also makes me wonder if we had anyone on the airbases who painted.  This would be tough since supplies would be difficult to come by, at least I would think so.  But we did manage to get paint to color and decorate our planes so perhaps we had left some aside for more artistic purposes.

So this does bring up an important topic for people with past life recollections in that imagery or photos can have an influence on memory recall.  This kind of stimulus can reach inside of one and just pull to the surface all kinds of feelings, thoughts, and images as well.  And some of Liam Rainfords’s paintings do remind me of Europe even though I think his inspiration for topics are from his local area of residence which I believe is in Ireland.  He also does make a comment about one of his paintings looking like an area in the Netherlands, so perhaps there is something familiar about the scenery.  Please take a look at his work even if you don’t have an interest in my past life recollections.  His videos of his work are pure enjoyment to watch.  Liam Rainsford blog

Rittmeister © 2012
http://www.rittmeister.org