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Your Soul’s Gift To You: Understanding The Life Your Soul Planned For You

ROBERT SCHWARTZ: “In this ‘new’ insightful conversation with Robert Schwartz (my second interview with him), we discuss pre-birth planning, specifically the healing power of the life our souls planned before our birth. We discuss the relationship between you and your soul, how understanding pre-birth planning leads to healing, if pre-birth planning interferes with free will, the people in our lives who are part of our soul’s plan, and even when our souls plan a spiritual awakening for us. In my last interview with Rob, we discussed the challenges our souls plan for us; so I took this conversation to a new place entirely. There’s too many gems in here to even list. Rob is such an articulate, graceful speaker with incredible wisdom that I just know you’ll love this interview.” ~ Bob Olson, Afterlife TV

Robert Schwartz Biography: In a personal session with a medium in 2003, author Robert Schwartz was astonished to speak with nonphysical beings who knew everything about him – not just what he had done in life, but also what he had thought and felt. They told him that he had planned many of his most difficult experiences before he was born. Realizing that a knowledge of pre-birth planning would bring great healing to people and allow them to understand the deeper purpose of their life challenges, he decided to devote his life to the study of pre-birth planning. The extraordinary insights that have emerged from his work speak to our heartfelt, universal yearning to know . . . why.

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Afterlife TV is presented by Afterlife Investigator & Psychic Medium Researcher Bob Olson, who is the author of Answers about the Afterlife: A Private Investigator’s 15-Year Research Unlocks the Mysteries of Life after Death.

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Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Hey everybody. Bob Olson here with Afterlife TV. You can find us at This is where we search for evidence of life after death and ask the meaningful questions around that subject. Today we’re going to be talking about your soul. Specifically the gift that your soul has given you and a little hint about that is we’ll be talking about the healing power of pre-birth planning.

We have a guest who’s really been brought back by popular demand. I think I’ve had more questions regarding the interview that I’ve done with this guest than with anybody else. And I think it’s because it’s such a deep subject, and such a complicated subject, and such a meaningful subject. So I’m so happy to have you back Robert Schwartz. Thanks for coming back.

Robert Schwartz: You’re welcome Bob. It’s a pleasure to be back.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Do you mind if I call you Rob?

Robert Schwartz: Rob is great.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Yeah, okay. I will let everybody know right away that we’re talking about your second book. Your first book was “Your Soul’s Plan”. And there’s going to be a video underneath. This one that people can watch if they want to watch that one first, okay, so that would be our first interview. The second one is this here “Your Soul’s Gift”. And it’s about the healing power of pre-birth planning. Specifically the subtitle says, “The healing power of the life you planned before you were born,” so very cool.

Both of these books are amazing, life changing. I can’t even imagine how many people have told you this, but I’ve had so many people tell me that your books and your work have changed their life. Why don’t we just start off with you defining what pre-birth planning is and then, if you can, sort of explain the big picture message that is the basis of your work.

Robert Schwartz: Sure. I’d be happy to. Let me just say first I do have a website at and anybody who would like to can read a large excerpt of both books for free on that website.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Cool; very cool.

Robert Schwartz: Pre-birth planning is the process by which we and our souls plan a life before we come into physical body. Now when I say, “We,” and “Our souls,” that’s a little bit misleading because it implies that there’s a distinction or a separation between you and your soul, and really there is no separation. But because of the limits of language, I’m going to have to talk about it in those terms. So the way pre-birth planning works, as I understand it, is that a person’s soul, and here I’m defining soul as a spark of God, a portion of God’s energy; plans before coming into body to inclinate in a certain time period, in a certain physical location, in a certain body, with a certain family, and then to have certain experiences over the course of a lifetime.

The pre-birth plan is created by the soul in consultation with God, Spirit Guides, Angels; what we would call Ascended Masters. Then once a plan is in place, the soul creates the personality. That would be you and me who are going to be in body. So the personality is a spark of the soul and the soul is a spark of God. Now once the personality is created, the personality is told what the plan is for the upcoming lifetime.

At that point, you can do one or two things. You can either agree to the plan, which is what the vast majority of people do, or if you think that it’s too much, you can express fear, doubt, worry, reservations. If you do that then your Guides and your soul will reassure you that the plan is for your highest and greatest good and for the highest and greatest good. During that process of being reassured, you will feel the tremendous love, the unconditional love of your Guides and your soul.

And the feeling of that love will reassure you that it really is for the highest good, and at that point, the vast majority of people agree to the plan. But if you still have reservations and you still feel that it’s too much, you can express them at that point. And if you do, then the plan is revised, and modified, and made a little bit easier. That’s essentially how it works.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Alright. I’m curious, so you talk about the highest good. So I get the impression when you use the phrase “highest good,” that it’s not just for that one personality or even that one soul. It’s for other souls as well. Is that true?

Robert Schwartz: Yes, that’s my understanding is that the pre-birth plan for any one individual serves the highest good of that individual but also the highest and greatest good of all concerned. So you and the members of your family are in service to one another. You and your friends are in service to one another. You and pretty much everybody you meet over the course of a lifetime are in service to one another even though it may not necessarily appear that way on the surface.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Okay, which sort of brings us to that second part of that question that I had is the big picture message that is the basis of your work. What is your work all about? Tell us.

Robert Schwartz: The basic intent of the work is to help people see deeper meaning and deeper purpose in challenges, which may appear on the surface not to have any deeper meaning or deeper purpose. In other words, I think we live at a point in linear time in which the average person, when something quote on quote bad happens to them, they tend to feel victimized.

Depending upon their beliefs they feel that a punishing God is punishing them in some way or that a cruel universe is punishing them in some way. Or at a minimum, they may simply not see any deeper meaning or purpose. It may seem like life is completely random and arbitrary and they’re simply being buffeted about. Now I don’t believe that any of that is true.

What my research shows for “Your Soul’s Plan” and “Your Soul’s Gift,” is that, in fact, we ourselves plan our lives and agree to the plan prior to birth as I described a moment ago. So the basic intent is that to help people see deeper meaning and deeper purpose. Now there’s a more specific intent, which is to help people come out of victim consciousness. Victim consciousness is a tremendously low vibrational state. It’s tremendously disempowering.

If you believe yourself to be a victim, then you believe that, to one degree or another, you are helpless and powerless. And if you believe that, then it becomes a self-fulfilling prophesy even though it isn’t, in fact, true. So the meaning here is that if you agreed to your life plan, you are the all-powerful creator of all that you experience. Once you know that, then it pulls you out of victim consciousness, which is tremendously empowering, and then you can go about creating in a much more conscious manner.

Now there’s an even more specific intent in the new book “Your Soul’s Gift,” which is talk about the healing power of the life we planned before we were born. And people ask the question, “If we plan great challenges that wound us, aren’t we actually doing the opposite of healing? Aren’t we actually hurting ourselves?” And this is a very difficult concept to get at. But at the level of the soul, things that are wounding to their personality can catalyze great healing depending upon how the personality responds to the life challenges.

Basically, if you respond with love, at the soul level it catalyzes profound healing. If you respond with fear, then, in fact, you are wounded and you will go on in a wounded state until you learn to respond in love. That’s essentially how it works. But the idea here is that these great challenges that seem to hurt us actually can lead to very, very deep healing over a period of time.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: That’s profound; it’s deep. It certainly makes sense when you say it, and then we try to apply it to our lives – not so easy. First of all, both of your books give lots of examples of this in action. And you talk about many subjects so that people can usually apply one of them to their lives; their situation. And I know you’re going to give some examples as we go along.
Let me back up a little bit because you do talk about – earlier you mentioned the relationship and the difference between the soul and its human counterpart, which you call the incarnating personality. Tell us a little bit about this relationship and the differences between them because I’m sure that for some people this is the hurdle that they’re having trouble getting over.

Like you said, “We can only really talk about these things as if the soul were separate from us.” You’re certainly not saying that as you already told us. So tell us about that relationship a little bit more so we can understand that better.

Robert Schwartz: Well you the personality; that is everyone watching this conversation. You are a part of your soul and you have access to all the love, all the wisdom, all the strength and all the power of your full soul. But because the average person doesn’t know that, in some ways they are veiled from it or separated from it.

So many of your listeners will be familiar with the idea of the aura, which is sometimes further broken down into the emotional, mental, and spiritual bodies. These are the subtle bodies around the physical body. The aura or subtle bodies are essentially the soul acting as the container for the physical body. The soul contains the physical body and the personality so you are never actually separate from your soul.

In fact, you’re always contained within it. Now the soul has what you could call a certain divine virtue. This is a term that I’ve come to use. It essentially refers to qualities that are an inherent part of the soul. There are 30, or so, divine virtues that come up again and again in my work. That is when we see souls planning their lives. They talk about in the pre-birth planning sessions wanting to come into the body for purpose of cultivating and expressing these qualities or divine virtues.

These are things like compassion, unconditional love, self-love, patience, empathy, gentleness, kindness; things like that. There are about 30 of them that I see again and again. These are qualities that are a part of the soul. And the soul wants to come into body in part to have the experience of cultivating them and expressing them on a physical plane.

And when they need to do this is through life challenges because life challenges in many people have the effect of breaking the heart open, so to speak. And then once the heart is open, the person is more kind, gentler, more loving. This is a very difficult way to learn, but some souls learn best this way and those souls tend to come to the earth for that type of learning.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Okay. I actually want to come back to that a little bit in a moment that healing aspect that we talked about at the very beginning. Actually, let’s just jump right into that. I didn’t want to go too deep, too fast, but you’ve already done that because that’s the essence of your work. So you’re kind of used to it and you do it so well, I mean, you’ve jumped right to the essence of all of this. So let’s talk about that. How does understanding our pre-birth planning help us to heal? What’s this healing aspect of understanding the pre-birth planning process?

Robert Schwartz: Well, one of the things I do in my private counseling practice is something called a personal guidance session. And in these sessions we often do an exercise which I refer to as the divine virtues exercise. So in the divine virtues exercise, I read the client the list of the 30 or so virtues that I was talking about a moment ago. They write them down the left hand side of a piece of paper.

And then across the top of the paper I ask them to make category headings one for everything that they consider to be a major life challenge. And then I ask them to go through the virtues one by one. And for each life challenge assign a numerical value indicating the extent to which that challenge helped them to cultivate or express. And it can be either one. They’re equally important from the soul’s viewpoint.

Step two to which the life challenge allowed them to cultivate or express that particular divine virtue. So they end up filling out this very elaborate, complex sort of grid. By the time they’re done, the average client will find that they’ve assigned consistently higher numbers to two or three of the divine virtues. That’s because the average person is working on two or three of the virtues in a particular lifetimes.

Occasionally somebody is working on four or five. That would tend to be a very trauma filled lifetime and there aren’t too many people doing that. Now once you know what your two or three are, this is where the healing comes in. And it comes in both retroactively and proactively. Retroactively, once you know which two or three virtues you’re working on, then you can go back over the course of your life and see the deeper meaning and deeper purpose of the challenging things that have happened to you.

So let’s say that you go through this exercise and you realize you are here to cultivate and express compassion, patience, and forgiveness. You will start to see how the major challenges in your life up until now were opportunities for you to cultivate and express those three divine virtues.

So whereas those challenges may have seemed random, arbitrary, meaningless, and you may have been bitter or angry about them, now that you see the deeper meaning, it’s very healing because you can say, “Alright, this other person who challenged me, they were just playing a role that we agreed together before we were born.” They were giving me, for example, an opportunity to cultivate and express forgiveness. And once you know that, then you actually can cultivate and express forgiveness for somebody in a much easier way. You can also have a lot more compassion for the person and for yourself. So it really creates a great healing on an emotional level in regard to past challenges.

And then it also helps proactively because once you know which two or three virtues you’re working on, then in the future when something challenging comes up, instead of not seeing a deeper meaning or purpose to it, you remind yourself okay, I am in this incarnation to cultivate and express compassion, patience, and forgiveness. In this current challenge in which I find myself, how can I utilize it to do that?

And once you ask that question, it immediately assigns deeper meaning and purpose to the challenge. So it’s no longer a random, arbitrary, meaningless event. It’s something that is quite rich with meaning and then you can go about learning the underlying lesson, in other words, cultivating those virtues in a much more conscious manner.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: That’s beautiful. Now I’m hearing myself. I hate when that happens. I think I said this in the last interview. I read your words and I think what a great writer. And then you go and speak exactly the same way. It blows my mind. I’m a bit envious; so well said. It brought up three questions for me. One is the 30 divine virtues, if people wanted to read what those were which of your books gives the list of the 30 divine virtues?

Robert Schwartz: It’s actually not in either book and that’s because I didn’t develop the list until the second book was out.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: That’s what I thought because I remember in our last interview you talked about that and maybe that would be something you’d want to put on your website at some point, but I think the problem with that would be that people might be working with them and not really knowing how to do it properly. Is that the case maybe?

Robert Schwartz: That would be a concern of mine. The other thing I would mention, though, is that the 30 divine virtues are not intended to be an exhaustive list. There are many, many more qualities that we as souls come into body to cultivate and express. But these are the ones that I see most commonly in my work.

In other words, working with the Mediums and the channels that I work with, we go into people’s pre-birth planning sessions or we do channeling sessions in which we hear the souls talking about the purpose, the intentions for the upcoming lifetime and these 30 or so are the ones that came up again and again.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: The second question that came up while you were talking is it possible for our souls to miscalculate what we can handle in terms of challenges in one lifetime? Do you know what I mean? In our last interview we talked more about the idea of our souls pre-planning the challenges in our lifetime and I wondered, you know, you said some people are here for one, or two, or three divine virtues; others for more. Any possibility our eyes are bigger than our stomach kind of thing where we set ourselves up for maybe possible failure?

Robert Schwartz: Well that actually does happen and it happens in a couple of ways. There are times where the soul itself takes on too much in the pre-birth planning process.

And sometimes the Spirit Guides actually advise the soul, “Hey, you’re taking on a little bit too much here. You might want to tone it down.” And if a soul is particularly, I’ll use the word ambitious, although that’s not quite accurate, but for lack of a better term if the soul is particularly ambitious for the upcoming lifetime, the soul can actually ignore the advice of the Spirit Guides and take on what turns out to be too much for their personality.

But it also happens in a second way, which is that even if the Guides and other beings who are advising the soul feel that the plan is a moderate one, it can still occur, and actually frequently does that the incarnate personality responds to the plan challenges out of fear rather than love; makes what you could call discordant or unloving decisions.

And when that happens, it takes the person off the highest vibrational path for the lifetime and it often has the effect of triggering more catalyst or more challenges, which can eventually overwhelm the personality. And so it actually is the case that some lifetimes will come to an end because the soul concludes it will not be able to accomplish what it came to accomplish and that it’s best simply to start over.

Now having said that, I want to point out from the human perspective, it sounds like what I’ve just described would be a failure. And I can assure everyone listening today your soul will not regard you as a failure. No matter what you do in a lifetime, there is absolutely no judgment of you by your soul, or by your Guides, or by Angels, or masters, or God.

There may be self-judgment in the life review after the life is over. But you would be the only being who would have any judgment of how you lived your lifetime even if you don’t accomplish what your soul had hoped for in the pre-birth plan, your soul is still deeply, deeply grateful to you for the courage you show by coming into body and living your physical lifetime on earth, which is not an easy thing to do.
And even if you don’t accomplish Plan A, so to speak, you will still derive a lot of growth in learning out of a lifetime. Your soul will be deeply grateful to you for this. And so there simply is no judgment of the personality by the soul.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: I’m glad you said that because I said setting ourselves up for failure and as soon as I said it, I knew failure was the wrong word, so thank you for bringing that up because in every area that I have investigated regarding the afterlife, that message is true all the way across the board. Nobody disagrees with that idea.

And the third question that came up while you were talking was the idea about is every person in our life part of our soul’s plan? I would imagine they are, but certainly significant ones, but you tell me.

Robert Schwartz: Well here it depends on your definition of plan. If by plan you mean what was set up prior to birth, then the significant people certainly. The answer to that is yes and actually many of the minor people as well. In fact, there is something known as a bump contract. And this term is used when you plan prior to birth to meet somebody, just very, very briefly to bump you, so to speak, back on your primary path if you’ve gotten off it.

And the way that you know you’ve encountered somebody with whom you’ve had a bump contract is that it tends to be a very short relationship but a very intense one that has a profound impact on your life. So this person may be there very, very briefly and yet that, too, is part of the pre-birth plan. Now if by plan you mean sticking to the broader intentions that were set up prior to birth but maybe not the minute details of the pre-birth plan, then that encompasses, actually, a much greater number of people.

And what I mean is this. We are all vibrational beings and everybody knows about the Law of Attraction right now. So as I understand it, everybody who comes into your life is somebody that you’ve called into your life; attracted at some level. Often not conscious, but your soul is very aware of everybody who’s coming into and out of your life. And so there are modifications that are made to the pre-birth plan after you get into body and they’re implemented through your vibration.

In other words, let’s say that your pre-birth intention is to deepen in compassion. This would be a very common pre-birth intention. And let’s say that, for one reason or another, the people that you agreed to work on this lesson with prior to birth, whatever it is that they’re doing with you and for you, despite their best efforts, you’re still not getting the lesson. You’re still not deepening in compassion.

So at this point, your soul, in collaboration with the souls of other people, can bring new people into your life who will also, in one way or another, give you a nudge to learn compassion. So these may not be things that were set up before your incarnation, but they’re true to the pre-birth intention. And in that sense, they’re true to the pre-birth plan.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Okay, alright. I love this because you’re covering so many of the questions that I had but obviously in a different order, but then not exactly the way that I had asked it. So you brought up this idea of intentions and sort of this Law of Attraction concept.

And thinking about that, so many people in our audience have learned and believe in the idea that what we think, and what we feel, and the things that we do send a message to the universe of what we want and we attract that into our lives; such as gratitude tells the universe that we want more of that in our lives. Is there one that’s more powerful over the other?

Does the soul plan for something to happen; override this idea of the Law of Attraction or intentional attraction into our lives? Or do they always try to work it out? I would imagine they always try to work it out, but if they’re in contrast with one another, what happens at that point?

Robert Schwartz: Well takes a very simple example. I mentioned earlier that the soul has the ability to incarnate in any physical location and at any time. Another thing that the soul can do is to choose prior to birth, to be born with some sort of physical handicap.

So if you are a soul who chooses to be born in a location and at a point in linear time in which you have a certain physical handicap that you know at a soul level, prior to birth, can’t be treated by medical science, then you’re going to have that physical handicap short of what we would call the miracle. So if you’re born with this physical handicap that can’t be treated medically, as you grow up you may learn about the law of attraction, the importance of gratitude, and so forth.

And you might say to yourself, “I would like to utilize these spiritual tools to heal my physical handicap.” If the soul’s pre-birth intention was that you, the personality, would have that physical handicap for most of your life, or perhaps all of your life then the soul’s intention will override the intention of the incarnate personality and so you may practice using these tools.

But the simple fact that you chose to be born in a time period in which medical science can’t treat the handicap, that’s going to override Law of Attraction, the uses of gratitude, and so forth. Now having said that, the conscious use of the Law of Attraction, and in particular the conscious use of gratitude is a tremendously, tremendously powerful creational tool, and I don’t want, in any way, to discourage people from using that.

An analogy you might use here in order to understand this is that when you think about what you want, it’s as though you’re sending a black and white movie out into the universe, a picture of what you want and you’re asking, “Bring this to me.” But when you feel what you want, and particularly when you feel gratitude for it even before it’s happened, then it’s like you’re beaming a full Technicolor movie out into the universe and you’re saying, “This is what I want. Please bring it to me.”

So obviously the Technicolor movie so to speak, gives the universe a lot more information to work with. It’s a much more complete picture and is much more likely therefore to manifest. So that’s how gratitude is much more powerful than simply thinking about what you would like to have.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Yeah. That’s right. Everything I’ve learned about it as well, you know, when you add feeling, when you add everything. When you add feeling and action to what you’re thinking, it just keeps magnifying as we go along. But then, of course, we have the grand question that you’ve heard a million times I know, which is does pre-birth planning interfere with our free will?

Robert Schwartz: The answer to that question is no. And let me explain how that can be. Let’s say hypothetically, and this is a hypothetical story that I share in the book “Your Soul’s Gift.” Let’s say that there is a soul who has had many incarnations in which they deferred to the wishes of others. So in the life review, this soul would see that they had a tendency to let other people tell them how to live their life and would be motivated to heal it.

And by the way, this motivation to heal past tendencies and past way of doing things, this is a primary motivation for planning life challenges. So this soul will carry energetically into body this tendency to defer to the wishes of others with the intention of healing it. Now, let’s say arbitrarily that this soul is incarnating as a female, no sexism intended. Let’s say also that there’s another soul in that soul’s soul group who has the opposite tendency.

This is somebody who, in many past lives, ran rough shot over others, dominated people inappropriately; that person would see in their life review that they had that tendency, and they would also be motivated to heal it. So this soul carries into body energetically the tendency to dominate others, not for the purpose of expressing it, but in the hope, the intention that they will be healed; that they will learn to respect others.

And let’s say arbitrarily this soul is incarnating as a male. Again, no sexism intended. So the soul incarnating as the female would go where of the pre-birth intention of the soul incarnating as the male. And she could go to him and say, “Hey, I’m taking into body this tendency to defer to the wishes of others. I see that you’re taking into body the opposite tendency; the tendency to dominate others. Why don’t you and I make a pre-birth plan to marry, say around the age of 30, and our hope is that I will learn to stand up for myself, and you will learn to respect the wishes of others.” Now they know this is going to be a turbulent marriage, but they’re willing to take that on in the hope of learning what they want to learn. So that’s the pre-birth plan.

Now let’s say the woman, when she’s about 25 years old, she gets a job with an employer who is running rough shot over her, treating her with a lack of gentleness, respect, and kindness. And let’s say, also, they she summons the internal resources and she makes a stand. She says to him, “Stop. You may not treat me this way. If you want me to keep working here, you must treat me with respect and kindness.”

The moment the woman makes a stand like that, there’s a tremendous increase in her vibration which, if she sustains the increased vibration until she’s the age of 30, now one of two things will happen; either she and the man she planned to marry will never meet because, by virtue of the Law of Attraction, her vibration is much higher than his and so they never come together.

Or if they do meet, they’re not interested in each other. They have one date and nothing happens, again because of the Law of Attraction their vibrations are so different. So in this hypothetical, the woman has utilized her free will to learn the pre-birth lesson, which in turn obviates the need for the plan of challenge; the marriage. And so it simply never happens. That’s how pre-birth planning and free will intersect in a very elegant sort of way.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Wow. I couldn’t think of a better example. It’s perfect and hopeful. You know what I mean? I think it gives people a lot of hope. I think one of the things that can happen when you start talking about pre-birth planning is this dismal feeling like you don’t have any control over your life. And yet that is not your message. In fact, that’s the opposite of your message I think.

I should mention, people will read about it in your book, but I should mention that this work started with you. This is your own story. You had your own things that you needed to overcome. Correct?

Robert Schwartz: Yeah, that’s absolutely true. I come from an abused background myself and for many, many years I felt victimized by that. I couldn’t understand why it had happened. I didn’t see any deeper meaning or purpose in it. I was on a healing path, but I wasn’t healing in a way that I wanted to. And so it really was a very personal search for meaning and for purpose, for answers, for healing.

And we talked a little bit about this in another conversation, but I’ll just share it since it’s relevant now. This path of seeking answers, very personal answers, led me to see a medium. This was back in 2003. I had never been to see a medium before. I wasn’t sure if I believed in it. Mediumship was not part of my background, but I was on this healing path and I was looking for answers. And so in this session with the Medium, she channeled my Spirit Guides. They introduced me to this idea of pre-birth planning. And they said you planned your base challenges, including this abusive background that I came from.

Well you can imagine this was a paradigm shattering revelation for me. And it caused me to completely open up and consider could this possibly be true? Could it be that I myself agreed to have that experience? And if I did, what the heck was I thinking? Well, as I now know and believe, I did agree to that experience.

And we don’t need to go into the details for it. It has to do with very complex relationships with the others who were involved, but I understand now that that part of my background was set up for the purpose of healing. On the surface, it would appear, from a human perspective, simply to be a meaningless, painful experience. But on a soul level experience, it’s a catalyst for profound healing.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: It is, and what’s cool about it, I mean, you have lots of stories, but you’re one of the stories, and the results of this healing is what? Like what does this do for your life? How does it change you? You mentioned a little bit. You talked about going from victimhood to meaning; that sort of a thing. But you personally, how did it change you?

Robert Schwartz: Well in a number of different ways. It helped me to forgive people who I used to feel had mistreated me in the past. Another thing that is does is that one thing I see again and again in the work for the books I wrote, is that there’s an understanding that karma refers to the ties that bind. That’s actually the meaning of the work karma. And ties here refers to emotional ties, which are unresolved from past lives or might me left unresolved from the current lifetime.

The most common sort of emotional tie that binds people together who keep reincarnating with each other is a lack of forgiveness. One person does something to another. That person can’t forgive them and the lack of forgiveness prompts the two souls to come back into body and continue playing out these, sort of, karmic dramas in the hope, at the soul level, that finally forgiveness will be attained.

Well, if you know that you yourself planned your life prior to birth, then you can take responsibility for the things that happen. It doesn’t mean that you blame or criticize yourself. It simply means that you acknowledge that you’re the powerful creator of all you experience. Once you take responsibility in that way, it makes it a lot easier to forgive other people. So the way this affects my life now is that if something comes up and someone treats me in a way in which I feel anger, or blame, or resentment toward them, I will think to myself, “Alright, I don’t want to carry a lack of forgiveness for this person into the next lifetime and have to replay certain karmic dialogues.” So it makes me much for focused on getting to that place of forgiveness.

Now having said this, I want to add a very important point here. You know, when we talk about forgiveness, I think it’s important for people to understand that you don’t want to start saying to yourself, “I must forgive, or I should forgive, or I have to forgive.” That kind of language when you talk to yourself in terms of need to, have to, should to, ought to, that is the language of the ego. Your mind will talk to you that way but your soul won’t.

Your soul communicates with you through loving impulses. When you start saying to yourself, “I’ve got to forgive this person or I’ll have to reincarnate with them,” that is a contractive energetic state and it won’t allow you to forgive the person because you don’t create forgiveness as an act of will. You create it through intention. Now you’ll say to me, “What’s the difference? Isn’t intention an expression of will?” No it’s not and here’s the difference.

Let’s say that I have a bow and arrow, and my objective is to shoot the arrow into the center of an archery target. Can I will the arrow to hit the center of the target? No I cannot. Can I intend for the arrow to hit the center of the target? Yes, of course I can.

Feel the difference between those two things. One is a contracted energetic state. The other one has a lot more gentleness and kindness towards self. That’s how you create forgiveness through a gentle, kind intention; not through cracking whip over yourself and saying, “I have to forgive.” That won’t work.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Wow. Well right there, that’s a really profound statement and you could apply that to so many different things in life. And I think so many of us can look back and think of times when we’ve tried to will something and it just made a mess of it; whereas, if you could sort of surrender and allow it to happen in the way that you described through intention, it’s a completely different experience and more likely that you’re going to get what it is that you want.

I see the same thing with people who, you know we were talking about the Law of Attraction, who have sort of tried to follow the Law of Attraction, and we’ll just say for material gain, and they did all the things.

They did it all, but because they were just sort of following steps, and it wasn’t so much of an intention as they were trying to force something to happen by following these steps that are supposed to lead to something, they didn’t have the same results as those people who really understood what the Law of Attraction is all about and how it’s related to this idea of intention, and then use that to make things happen. But perfect, and I have to say every time I thought of a question, you were able to explain that immediately right after. I wrote forgiveness here and then “boom” you went right into forgiveness. I don’t need to ask questions. I just need to get you talking and you’re going to answer all of the questions that people have out there.

So beautifully said – I need to go back a little bit because this is one of them that I don’t want people to misunderstand. You had said, “If people take on too much,” and I think so many of our audience do think well, “Geez, maybe I took on too much in this lifetime.” You know what I mean? But you talked about if you take on too much sometimes life will end because the soul recognizes that it’s not going to be able to accomplish what it came here for.

What do you mean by that? Could you just expand on that a little bit more? I mean, it doesn’t mean that they’re necessarily going to die and it doesn’t necessarily mean that whatever they should commit suicide. What did you mean by that? I understand that the soul can decide that they’re not going to be able to make that happen. But go further than what we just sort of covered very lightly.

Robert Schwartz: Well there are basically two circumstances under which a physical incarnation would come to an end. One is if the soul concludes that it will not be able to do what it came here to do. And we talked about that. I want to emphasize that there’s no judgment on the part of the soul. It’s not viewed as a bad thing. In fact, the soul’s attitude, simply put, is okay. Let’s try again. There’s really no judgment beyond that.

The second circumstance under which an incarnation ends is that the soul has accomplished what it came here to do. Now some people, after they’ve accomplished what they came here to do, the incarnation does not end because they continue on in a capacity of service to others. This theme of service to others is something that runs through every single pre-birth planning session we looked at.

Every single one had souls talking about their intention to be of service to one another and to the earth as a whole. So very often a soul will accomplish what it came here to do and its portion for its soul is done, but it will continue on in body in service to others. These are the main reasons why an incarnation comes to an end.

Now, one thing that happens in the pre-birth planning is that different exit points are set up. An exit point is a point at which something will happen or some set of circumstances will occur that makes it possible for the soul to take its energy out of the physical body. For example, in my first book “Your Soul’s Plan,” in the chapter on death of a loved one, there’s a story of a woman, Valerie, who plans prior to birth to lose her only child, who dies in a seemingly accidental drug overdose. And she also plans prior to birth to lose her fiancé, who dies in a diving accident. He was a commercial diver. So working with one of the Mediums, who are my colleagues, we talked to the former fiancé, his name was DC, and we said to DC, “Tell us about your death, the diving accident, what was planned prior to birth.”

And one of the things he said was he talks about his different exit points. The diving accident was only one of them. And I said, “What were the others?” And he said, “Well, one could have been a motorcycle accident.” And then he lists several others that I don’t specifically recall right now. Everybody has these. They’re all part of a pre-birth plan.

These are the points in your life in which your soul has anticipated that either you will have accomplished what you wanted to. Or if you’re not accomplishing what you came here to do, this would be an opportunity to leave the physical body. But again, there’s absolutely no judgment about that if it happens.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: If someone does not accomplish what they came here to do, I know there’s a belief out there that people are going to then – some believe that very quickly you’re going to have another incarnation and have to go through the exact same experiences all over again. First of all, the first answer to that is it depends on the person. You know what I mean? It depends on the situation.

But how would you answer that to someone who has this belief that I didn’t accomplish it here so that means I’m going to have to come back and do it all over again?

Robert Schwartz: Well it depends on what you mean by do I all over again. It’s not so much that you’re planning to have specific experiences, but rather, as we talked about earlier, that you want to learn certain lessons. You want to cultivate and express certain divine virtues. So you can do that through many, many different types of life plans; many, many different kinds of experiences. And the experiences don’t have to be challenges.

You can learn to cultivate and express these qualities through loving joyful experience as well. So you may be a soul, who in your life review [cutout]

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Oh, okay, I think we lost you there Robert. Hold on.

Robert Schwartz: How you’d like to do it through love and joyful experience. And so you plan a completely different type of life for yourself. It doesn’t have to be through challenge.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Okay. One of the things that I also like about this book, and I’m just going to sort of jump ahead because we are running out of time, is that in the first book you talked a lot about challenges. And in this book you actually talk about this idea of spiritual awakenings. Can you define what a spiritual awakening is in your mind?

Robert Schwartz: Spiritual awakening to me means that a person comes to know, not just believe, but actually comes to know in a very visceral felt kind of way that they are more than the physical body, more than their personality, more than their thoughts, more than their emotions. The physical body, the personality, the thoughts, and the emotions, these are all things you have while you’re in incarnation. These are things you carry.

But just because you have something, that doesn’t mean you are the thing you have. To give a very simple example, let’s say that you have a horse. Well that doesn’t mean that you are a horse. So by the same token, just because you have a body; you have a personality; you have thoughts; you have feelings. That doesn’t mean you are any of those things you’re not. These are things you have or carry during a lifetime.

But who you really are is a holy, eternal, courageous soul. A being a very [0:44:09.5] plan to leave, at least in your perceptions, a realm of love, and light, and peace, and joy to come into body and have great challenges in order to cultivate and express certain divine virtues. So when you come into a visceral knowing of that that to me is a spiritual awakening.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Wow. Does the soul strive for a spiritual awakening in every lifetime?

Robert Schwartz: Not in every lifetime, but the topic of spiritual awakening is particularly relevant to the current era because this is, I believe, a time of widespread, worldwide in fact, spiritual awakening. And so you have many, many souls all over the world that did plan for a spiritual awakening as part of this lifetime.

I’ll share an interesting story with you. Somebody I interviewed for my first book, whose story actually didn’t end up in the book, is a woman who is now in her 40’s. And a number of years ago, when she was in her 20’s, she and her daughter, who I believe was about seven at that time, were at a swimming pool during this summer. This woman was lying in a lounge chair in the sun. Her daughter was playing in the pool.
Well, all of a sudden the girl jumped up out of the swimming pool, ran over to her mother, and mind you, this is a child who previously had never said anything unusual, she ran over to her mother and said, “You’re not waking up the way you and I planned before we were born, so you’re going to have to have a really bad accident.” Well, you can imagine that the mother was aghast, partly because her daughter was speaking in such an odd way, and partly the content of what was being said. In any case, shortly thereafter, the mother had an auto accident, which did not trigger a spiritual awakening. A year or so later she had an even worse auto accident, which did not trigger a spiritual awakening.

And a year or so later she had a third and even worse auto accident, which finally triggered a spiritual awakening. This is an example of somebody who planned an awakening before birth, planned it to awaken through the experience of an accident if need be, and planned actually multiple accidents if need be. And that was the case here. Now, in sharing this story, I don’t want anybody to respond to it in fear. That’s not my intention. That is actually the opposite of my intention.

But what I do want to share is an awareness that very often people will notice that a certain type of challenge keeps coming back around in their life, and every time it comes back, it’s a little bit more intense. If you notice that kind of pattern in your life, this is something to pay very close attention to because it’s very likely to be part of your pre-birth plan, and it’s your soul trying to get your attention.

You know, when I interviewed people for my books, people who had that kind of experience with something coming back again, and again, and in increasingly intense form, it was interesting. They always used the same expression. They would say to me, “The universe hit me over the head with cosmic two by four.” I heard that again and again from people who had an experience like the woman who had the three auto accidents.

If you feel that the universe has hit you over the head with a cosmic two by four, pay very close attention to what the underlying lesson may be, whether it’s a spiritual awakening or something else because this is your pre-birth plan in action and it’s your soul trying to get your attention.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: And the other way around that, because you did talk about if we do certain things, it will change our vibrations so these things won’t be needed. And that’s sort of what the daughter was referring to. You needed it because you didn’t wake up the way you wanted to and so she had these things happen. What would be some of the ways that people could intentionally wake themselves up?

Robert Schwartz: Well, I think one way to intentionally wake is simply to first understand that you are an eternal soul coming into body for purpose of learning certain things, cultivating and expressing certain qualities. And then go about cultivating and expressing those qualities in a very conscious manner.

You know, the universe uses pain as a learning mechanism, as a teaching mechanism, which means that it’s optional. If you’re learning on your own, you don’t need the pain to prompt you to look for the underlying lesson. So let’s say that you do the divine virtues exercise or you simply conclude on your own that you’re in body in this lifetime to learn kindness. Then you set the intention to nurture kindness within yourself. Well how do you do that? It’s really very simple. You simply note when you’re kind to other people and then internally you applaud yourself. You celebrate it every time you do it.

This is like planting seeds. You’re planting seeds of kindness and you’re nurturing them by applauding yourself every time you express kindness. And so in this way, over a period of time, kindness grows. You become a kinder person. If you’re cultivating kindness in a very conscious manner like that, then you’re not going to need these more painful catalysts to get you to look at why you’re here in body.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: That sort of goes along with that idea we’ve all heard, “It’s not what happens to you. It’s how you react to what happens to you that matters.” And what you said very early on today is if we come from a place of love, that’s sort of the goal, to come from a place of love rather than fear. What could you say about that before we sort of wrap things up here?

Robert Schwartz: Sorry Bob. I lost the connection there for a second. What was the question?

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Oh, you did. That happened with you a minute ago. Can you hear me now?

Robert Schwartz: I can. I do.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Let’s leave everybody with a message about love versus fear, about reacting to the things that happen to them from a place of love. If that doesn’t come naturally for them, for instance, how might someone go about doing that?

Robert Schwartz: I think the way to come from a place of love, I think there are a couple of things you can do. One is quite simply pray, and ask in your prayers to God or a source, all that is, however you conceive of a higher power, ask for assistance in coming from a place of love rather than a place of fear. Prayer is a very powerful tool for accomplishing pretty much anything you would want to accomplish.

And I’m not sure that we actually understand how prayer works. I believe that when you pray and ask for divine assistance in being a more loving person, it has the effect of calling light, non-physical light, into your consciousness, into your being. And then the light, in ways that are beyond ways of human comprehension, currently actually assist you in being a more loving person.

So prayer is one way to go about this. A second a way, I think, to come from love rather than fear is to meditate. Meditation is an ages old tool. It’s in all the major religions, and it’s just a tremendously, tremendously powerful tool because regardless of the form of meditation you practice, what it will do for you is that it allows you to witness fear. So everybody’s heard about become the witness, cultivate the attitude of the witness.

This is tremendously powerful because then when fear arises within you, instead of reacting to it, instead of allowing it to make decisions for you, you just observe it; you note it; you watch it float by like you would watch a dark cloud float by on the horizon and you don’t react to it. The fact of the matter is that fear makes very poor decisions.

So if you are identified with your fear, meaning you don’t know how to witness it, then fear is going to make very bad decisions for you and this is how people end up calling more challenges into their life. But if you can witness fear, and you learn to do that through meditation, then you can consciously choose to come from a place of love. Prayer and meditation are the two big tools in my view.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Great examples. I’ve certainly experienced that in my life. If I’m having a bad day, it just seems to get worse and worse; the great manifester of good and bad, right? And then I recognize it, become a witness to it, and I go, “Whoa, I’ve got to change everything. I’ve got to change the way I’m thinking. I’ve got to change my fear.” And that works and it turns things around for you.

And the other way is true as well. I’m having a great day, you know, great things just keep happening, and I witness that as well and think I want to keep this going as long as I can, you know, and you try to make a conscious effort to do that.

Just in wrapping up here, first of all, thank you very much; amazing, absolutely amazing, and if people are enjoying this interview and the last one, I highly encourage them to read both of your books, “Your Soul’s Plan,” this one’s, “Your Soul’s Gift.” They can see the cover in the other video to your first book. The two go together. They can change someone’s life by reading one of them; two of them, even more so.

The other thing is you’re now working with people one on one. One of the things that you’ve added to working with Mediums and channels is hypnotherapy work. Tell us a little bit about that.

Robert Schwartz: Well the way this developed is that after my first book came out, for a period of years people were contacting me and saying, “I’d like to know what my pre-birth plan is. Can you tell me what it is?” And there was no way that I personally could help them to answer that question. And I simply suggested work with the Mediums and channels in the book. But then I actually realized that there actually is a way that I can help people get at this kind of information themselves, and that is through hypnotherapeutic regression. So I studied hypnotherapy; was certified by the International Between-Lives Regression Network, and now offer two types of regression sessions.

One is called a Past Life Soul Regression and the other is a Between-Life Soul Regression. And in both of these, the client has the opportunity to come into knowing of their pre-birth plan, to talk with their Spirit Guide, or their loved ones who are back in spirit, and ask any questions they want to. In the Past Life Soul Regression, we take the client back to a past life that explains the plan, the intention, for the current lifetime.

And then when they exit the physical body at the end of that past life and go into spirit, then they have the opportunity generally to talk with the Spirit Guide or loved one, and ask any questions they have about the life plan, or anything else that’s of interest to them. Now, Between-Life Soul Regression, it’s a much longer session; it’s a much deeper kind of trance.

It contains an abbreviated past life regression, the sole purpose of which is to get the person into spirit, into the non-visible realm, and then at that point any number of things can happen. Some people will go to their akashic record and be shown their book of lives, which is the complete record of all lives they’ve ever lived. Some people go to classrooms on the other side and they see souls preparing for the upcoming lifetime.

Some people have reunions with their soul group, which is a very loving and joyful kind of experience. But the primary intention is to get the person in front of what is called the Council of Elders. The Council consists of the very wise and highly evolved, loving beings, who oversee the cycle of reincarnation on planet earth.

If the person gets in front of the Council of Elders, this is a potentially transformative experience because the Council knows everything there is to know about their life plan and everything else about them. They can ask any question on any subject. And if it’s for their highest good, they’ll receive an answer. So it’s a potentially life changing experience.

And through these two types of regressions, the client can access information about the life plan on their own, without having to rely on anybody else.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: That’s absolutely amazing. I’ve had both of those experiences, not with you. I wish I had them with you. The other ones were great, but I just can’t imagine how much better it would have been to have those with you. I did meet with the Council of Elders. Oh my God, the love; the unconditional love that I just felt from them. I’ll never forget what that felt like; amazing. So I highly recommend both of those experiences for anybody. Also, I will mention that on your website, which is, correct?

Robert Schwartz: That’s correct.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Are all of the chapters available singly, by themselves?

Robert Schwartz: Yes, every chapter from the new book, “Your Soul’s Gift” is available as a stand-alone e-book, as well as four chapters from the first book, “Your Soul’s Plan.”

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: That’s great. So if they’re trying to just find something that relates to what they’re going through, they can go there, and choose one, and just read that as sort of a preamble. My guess is they’re going to read that and they’re going to want to buy both books anyways. Are there any events coming up for you Robert?

Robert Schwartz: In April, I’ll be speaking at a spiritual study center in Taiwan if anyone from Taiwan has tuned in. In May, I’ll be at the Infinity Foundation in Chicago. In December, I’ll be back at Kripalu in Western Massachusetts. So those are a few of the things coming up.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Is everything on your website?

Robert Schwartz: Everything is on the website.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Alright. We’ll put the links below, as well, so people just can find out about those events that you talked about. And once again, it’s been amazing. It’s been enlightening. It’s like a spiritual awakening in itself. People are already having that spiritual awakening. Rob, thanks so much. You know how much I appreciate you being here and it’s always a pleasure.

Robert Schwartz: You’re welcome, Bob, it’s a pleasure and an honor for me.

Bob Olson, Afterlife TV: Alright, bye now.

Robert Schwartz: Bye-bye.

Afterlife TV is presented by Afterlife Investigator & Psychic Medium Researcher Bob Olson, who is the author of Answers about the Afterlife: A Private Investigator’s 15-Year Research Unlocks the Mysteries of Life after Death.

Check out Bob Olson’s other sites: (a directory of hundreds of psychics & mediums by location with reviews & Instant Readings) & (his personal recommended list of tested psychics and mediums) or visit Bob’s Facebook Page. Bob also has a popular workshop for psychics and mediums at

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