On a recent trip through Turkey, my husband, Martin and I visited many ancient sites and experienced the wonderful hospitality of village folks who welcomed us into their homes where we sat on beautiful heirloom hand-woven carpets, and were offered simple and delicious meals of fresh baked bread and meze; a collection of small dishes served as appetizers, and freshly wrapped grape leaf dolmas. Their hospitality and smiling faces spoke of a culture that welcomes strangers with open arms.

That beautiful experience carried through to each ancient site we visited, adding to our feelings of awe and wonder at the magnificence of the past.

As we walked through a grassy pasture towards the city’s temple entrance, I suddenly found myself transforming…

Heading southwest towards the well-known city of Bodrum, in western Anatolia, enjoying the rolling hills, we encountered more greenery, and less of a desert feeling. On our way, we came to a little-visited place called Aphrodisias, an ancient Hellenistic city dedicated to Aphrodite, the Goddess of Love. This special place also flourished under Roman and Byzantine rule, and excavations in theater hill have revealed layers of settlement going back to the Bronze Age (c. 2800-2200 BC).

We pretty much had the entire site to ourselves until the local mayor and a party of dignitaries began arriving for a special late-afternoon celebration. What a sight to see people emerging, in impeccable evening attire, from black shiny SUVs and polished sedans, against the ancient ruins of columns and animated wall friezes. Before their arrival, however, we got to quietly enjoy the atmosphere and spaciousness of Aphrodisias.

 

There has been an ongoing attempt by archeological students to reestablish the fallen ruins to their rightful glory. Perhaps that had something to do with what happened next.

As we walked through a grassy pasture towards the city’s temple entrance, I suddenly found myself transforming — I began automatically taking off all of my jewelry, including my rings and earrings — I only realized what I was doing as I was removing the last of it.

As I approached the temple arch and passed through, now seemingly as a man, I had the urge to take a knee and bring my right fist to my chest. LOL. No kidding. Then, heading further into the complex and schools (gymnasia), I came to the realization that I had a son in school there. He was in training for the pre-Olympic Games to be held later on in the year. (Aphrodisias has the largest athletic stadium, known as a colosseum, in the world, with the exception of those in Rome and Verona).

I’m pretty sure these glimpses of past lifetimes show us all the facets that have come together to form us, and can give us a better understanding of who we are today.

I had literally stepped into a time where I had enjoyed great prosperity under Roman rule. I was happy and felt immense pride along with great joy and gratitude for my station in life, and that of my son. Aphrodesias also had a wonderful school of sculpture, with student works of friezes and wall reliefs displayed one on top of another creating a large wall at the entrance of the gymnasium, that still stands today.

As myself in that Roman time, I sensed a feeling of gratitude that others had discovered this once-magnificent city, and I felt pride at how some of the columns were found still standing after all those centuries.

What a wonderful life I had there then, as I have now!

Looking back on this experience as my present-time self, I feel gratitude at being able to recall this lifetime, and quite relieved that it was not one of great suffering, as I have experienced in other past lives.

I now have happy memories to mingle in with those of pain and suffering. It’s a wonderful thing to be able to have those moments of inspiration that reveal who we were—prosperous, not-so-prosperous, happy, not-so-happy, tyrant, slave, citizen, healer, etc.

I’m pretty sure these glimpses of past lifetimes show us all the facets that have come together to form us, and can give us a better understanding of who we are today. They are meant as reference points, not as places in which to dwell or get lost in their drama, but to show gratitude, forgiveness, and compassion for the human condition.

I send many blessings to you on your journey of discovery.

And if you feel you need help in recalling, understanding, acknowledging and healing the past, I’m here to assist you on that journey. We can venture into your past lives together.

Love,

Melinda