Book Reviews  --  Spiritual Exploration  --  Spirit/Energy Healing

Author: Barbara Ann Brennan

Title: Hands of Light

Book Review 31.03.2010

(c) 2010 by Heidrun Beer

This book review was originally published on a mailing list for oldtime Scientologists. It therefore contains special words from the Scientology universe, marked in italic print. Please look them up in a Scientology dictionary.


Barbara Ann Brennan: Hands of Light

A Guide to Healing Through the Human Energy Field


This text about the author is quoted from Wikipedia

Barbara Ann Brennan (born 19 February 1939) is an American author, spiritual healer, businesswoman and teacher working mainly in the field of "energy healing". She coined the term "High Sense Perception" to describe her work.

Brennan received a Bachelor of Science degree in Physics in 1962 from the University of Wisconsin–Madison, and two years later received her Masters in Atmospheric Physics from the same institution. She then worked as a research scientist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. From 1970, she researched and worked with the "human energy field".

Her first book, Hands of Light: A Guide to Healing Through the Human Energy Field, became popular in 1989 and is considered a "classic" in the field of spiritual healing, with reputedly over one million copies in print in 22 languages.

Brennan's books are most noted for their drawings of auras and energy fields, and her descriptions of how human energy fields interact with each other.


It should be mentioned that Barbara Ann Brennan has "auric vision". That means, she can see the human energy field without the help of Kirlian photography or other such mechanical extensions of the normal human vision.

She tells the story of how this ability developed in the book, and also presents exercises that can be used to train these perceptions.

So what she describes, and her many impressive drawings, are not coming from her imagination but directly from her own visual observation - which has an expanded spectrum that can be verified by Kirlian photography.


Barbara Ann Brennan presents the human being as composed from 8 bodies of different vibrationary levels. The central one - that we perceive as the physical body - is actually no less a "body of light" than the other 7, if we believe modern physics that has established that the solidity of matter is just an apparency, and matter itself is just clouds of swirling energy!

At the center of Brennan's cosmology is the concept that the human being is a unit of divine energy, called a God-Self, whose wholeness and integrity is damaged by "the illusion of separateness, which generates fear and self-hatred, which eventually causes illness". These disturbances of energy can happen on any of the 7 layers of the human energy fields (in other publications they are called the "subtle bodies") and will over time cause a corresponding illness in the physical body.

Her methods of hands-on healing consist of cleaning the energy field, balancing or restoring its energy if depleted, repairing disfigured or otherwise dysfunctional chakras (energy "organs" in the energy field whose function is to "metabolize" energy from the universal energy field so it can be used by the composite of physical body and energy bodies), and are combined with physical exercises, nutritional recommendations and holistic medicine in order to properly address the various energy layers with the corresponding methods.

In her healings, she works with spirit guides and spiritual surgeons (both not incarnated beings) who assist by adding their knowledge and energy to her own. She also gets prescriptions of food, medicines, vitamins, supplements or exercises for her clients from these people and gives many examples of how they have worked in specific situations.


Here is an image that gives the names of the 7 layers that compose the energy body or aura:

According to Brennan's book, each of these layers is the site of a specific functionality. All of these work together to compose the life of a complete (incarnated) human being. Malfunctions on any of them influence the whole composite and need healing (re-integration).

These functionalities and their aberrations are extensively documented in the book, with many examples and interesting comments by Brennan's personal spirit guide Heyoan.

Ideally, they would be (from outside to inside):


If we look at the model above, we can find that LRH developed his processing approach from the inside outward, i.e. he started with the physical body (in the original Dianetics concept he thought that charge was stored in the cells of the physical body) and then worked his way outward.

In today's enhanced approach we address the physical body (pain and sensations), the etheric body (recorded efforts or impulses), the emotional body (recorded emotions) and the mental body (considerations, thoughts, postulates). In sessions where the auditor asks for the location of an emotion or effort/impulse, they are found outside of the physical body more often than not: that means that the client has developed perceptions of the first two energy layers.

All these concepts assume a completely individuated (separated) spiritual being (thetan). LRH did not cover the layers outside or above that, where the person is rooted in the bigger "me" of what we call the 8th dynamic - other names would be All-That-Is, the main body of theta or God.

I personally have observed conflicts between the "divine will" and my own will, or conflicts between my emotional body and my rational thinking, to be just as massive as conflicts between "me, the spiritual being" and the physical body (these issues are covered in the "GE rundown" discussed elsewhere).

Brennan aligns and integrates these outer energy layers with the individuated personality as well as integrating the inner layers with each other and the physical body.

The book has detailed instructions for energy healing and mentions a lot of complementing methods that are administered by other specialists (auditing for addressing the inner layers should be mentioned there but is missing!). Especially interesting are the exercises for increasing one's own perceptions of people's energy fields (auras).

We would call these perceptions "OT perceptions", but auditing was never reliable in developing them. It will be interesting to see whether her exercises do a better job.

Brennan's book is written from a very OT viewpoint. I would like to mention that I have been struggling quite a bit with the issues that she describes in the 7 energy layers - they have become more real to me during last year's auditing.

In fact I discovered her books in the attempt to find solutions for these issues, which SCN does not address. My personal conclusion is that we need to integrate these technologies with each other - they look very compatible to me.



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