Shot 8 : Part B
With Prem and Heer everything was reversed. Their lives, and their lifetimes were unfolding independently and separately in my office. They did not know each other. They had never met. They came to the office on different days. Seeing them both separately and having no reason to suspect a link between them, I did not make a connection. They had loved each other and lost each other across lifetimes.
Why didn't I see it before? Was it even my destiny? Am I supposed to be some cosmic matchmaker? Was I rationalizing away "coincidences"? Or was I right on schedule, the idea dawning at its sunrise, the way it was planned all along.
It came to me one evening. "Onu?" I had heard it from Heer, weeks before, in my office.
Earlier that day, Prem couldn't remember his name. In a hypnotic trance, he had emerged in an ancient lifetime, one he had previously remember in the office. In that lifetime, he had died after being dragged by soldiers. His life ebbed away as his head rested in his beloved wife's lap, and she rocked rhythmically with despair.
Perhaps there was more to learn from that time. Once again he remembered dying in her arms, his life fading away. I asked him to look at her closely, to look deeply into her eyes and to see if he recognized her as someone in his current life.
"No," he sadly answered. "I don't know her, but she has the most beautiful eyes I have ever seen. I can drown in them . . . . .they touch my heart. The pain in her eyes is unbearable for me." I silent tear escaped from the corner of his eye.
I was touched deeply with this feeling, Prem had never sound so hurt and sad before.
"Do you know your name?" I asked, returning his attention completely to that lifetime in Punjab.
He pondered this question. "No," he finally said.
"I will tap you on the forehead as I count backward from three to one. Let your name just pop into your mind, into your awareness. Whatever name comes to you is fine."
Surprisingly, no name popped into his mind.
"I don't know my name. Nothing comes to me!"
But something came to me, popping into my mind like a silent explosion, suddenly clear and vivid.
"Onu," I said aloud. "Is your name Onu?"
"How do you know that?" he responded from the ancient depths. "That is my name. Some call me Anurag, and my wife, my Pihu calls me Onu. . . . .How do you know? Were you there, too?"
"I don't know," I answered truthfully. "It just came to me."
I was very surprised at the whole situation. How did I know? I have had psychic flashes before, but not often. This felt as I were remembering something rather than receiving a psychic message. Remembering from when? I could not place it. My mind stretched to remember, but I could not.
I knew from experience that I should stop trying to remember. Let it go, get on with the day, the answer would probably arrive spontaneously in a while.
An important piece of some strange puzzle was missing. I could feel its absence, hinting at a crucial connection still to be found. But a connection to what? I tried, not very successfully, to concentrate on other things.
Later that evening, the puzzle piece arrived suddenly and very softly in my mind. All at once, I was aware of it.
It was Heer. About two months ago, she had recounted a tragic but touching lifetime as a potter's wife in Punjab. Her husband had been killed "accidentally" by soldiers after they dragged him around from the back of a horse. The soldiers had not really cared what happened to him. His mangled body, his bleeding head, had been cradled by his wife, Pihu as he died in the dusty street.
She had remembered his name in that lifetime. His name was Onu.
My mind was working quickly now. The details of the two lifetimes fit together. Prem's and Heer's memories of that time meshed perfectly. Physical descriptions, events and names were the same. Husband and Wife. Onu and Pihu.
I have worked with many people, usually couples, who have found themselves together in previous lives. Many have recognized their soul companions, travelling together through time to be united once again in the current lifetime.
Never before had I encountered soulmates who had not yet met in the present time. In this case, soulmates - Prem and Heer - who had traveled nearly two thousand years to be together again. They had come all this way. They were within inches and minutes of each other, but they had not yet connected.
Another thought dawned. Perhaps they had been together in some or all of those times but had not recognized each other, because they had not met in the present. There was no face, no name, no landmark in the present life, no one to connect to the people in previous incarnations.
Now, after two thousand years . . . . .those arms had returned through hazardous mists of time to hold her again, to hug sweetly to his chest. But they did not know. Only I knew.
Best Friends. Childhood Lovers. Husband and Wife. How many more times throughout history had they shared their lives and their love?
They were together again, but they didn't know it. Both were lonely, suffering in their own way. Both were starving, and yet a feast had been set before them, a feast they couldn't yet smell or taste.
I was severely constrained by the "laws" of psychiatry, The strictest of the laws is that of privacy or confidentiality. I could not tell Prem about Heer, nor Heer about Prem. BUT I could introduce them and let destiny take its course. The psychiatric consequences stopped me cold.
What if I were wrong? What if a relationship between them began, soured, and ended badly? There could be anger and bitterness. How would this reflect back on their feelings about me as their trusted therapist? Would their clinical improvement unravel? Would all their good therapeutic work be undone? There were definite risks.
I also had to examine my own subconscious motives. Was my need to see my patients become happier and healthier, to find peace and love in their lives, affecting me judgement now? Were my own needs urging me to cross the boundary of psychiatric ethics?
The easy choice would be to leave well enough alone, to say nothing. No harm dome, no consequences. When in doubt, do no harm - The second law of psychiatry.
But, I chose to take the risk. I would intervene. I would try to nudge destiny along. As a concession to my training and to my fears, I would do it as carefully and as subtly as possible . . . . .I HAD to do something.