The Recap Process

Recap has many layers, but the actual steps are few. One of the ancient ways was to tell your life story aloud to Grandfather Fire, and I still recommend this as a start for those doing recap- even if it is just telling some of your life to a candle flame. The process of talking aloud forces you to hear truth and hear lies of your life. There are two types of recap. First is active and comes about from practicing the exercises suggested here. The other is passive and comes about without warning, when hearing a song on the radio for instance. We must begin with active recap in order to wake up from our slumber to allow spontaneous recap- the true procedure. Active recap is dull, boring and monotonous, don’t give up when you start, that is what your false mind wants you to do.

First one must find their place to perform recap. We need complete silence and solitude, thus it is best done in the hours when most people are asleep so that we are not affected by other people’s sounds or thoughts. Many do it in the wilderness to be away from people entirely. Some suggest the need for a box, the symbolic coffin found in ancient pyramids and tombs, not something for the dead but for one alive who wants to die to their old self. The idea is to stay night after night in the box until one’s whole life has passed before their eyes, then symbolically break the box as a symbol they are no longer locked to their old limitations. One certainly does not need a box for effective recapitulation, but if you do use one, do not let anyone else into it for it will be charged with your left side energy and could be dangerous to them. What you will need is an enclosed space to squeeze the energy body and better help with the recall. A closet is a good one, some like to be under a lot of blankets, a big cardboard box, a cave, even in your car. As long as the space is tight to squeeze your energy body, and the fact that you are alone. Don’t for example recap in bed next to someone, for your energy can be easily released to them, and you will be too close to be influenced by their thoughts.2

Once you have found a place, the next stage is to make the list. On this list you write down the name of everyone you have ever met. A daunting task for many right there. Create this list any way that helps you.3 You can use heading of where you worked, went to school, people you dated, and as you make that list, those names will trigger the names of people associated with them. Thousands of years ago the list was not a necessity, when people likely met 300 people in their whole life, but today it is different. This list needs to include anyone you had any meaningful interaction with. I looked at it as if there was someone I met whose name I tried to remember for whatever reason when I met them, was deserving for the list. When complete, place the names in chronological order with the most recent person you have met at the top of the list, and mom and dad at the bottom. You will recap your life following this list from top to bottom. You will also want to jot down key events that may have happened when you were alone, walking through the woods or driving on a country road. Events where no other person was present. Every event must be looked at, the list is just the way to help give you structure so that you can include it all. In fact, doing the list itself will be a form of recap as many forgotten events and people rush to the surface, and will in fact give you a burst of energy upon completion . Generally now I recommend for your first recap you just do the top 20 people you had the most interactions with. That allows you to get to some of the big stuff right away, then later on if you want to do everyone on your list, that is fine, but at least you will get to some of your most important people before you may get bored and never do it again.4

You can now simply take the list as it is and begin from top to bottom. I recommend not to start with your current relationship early on. Every person you recap will create some form of change, so give your current partnership some time. Don’t be afraid to recap it, it will just take you to truth, but for most people I suggest some leeway here. This is why many people are afraid to recap, they know deep down relationships and friendships are not based on trust and kindness, but rather than see these truths they want to hide from it. A recap may show you that you should no longer be in a relationship, or may show you how to truly and totally love that other person. People fear that the recap will lead to change, but life in the manifested world is all about change. To want to try and keep something exactly as it is, is in fact a from of manipulation. If you are afraid of losing a friendship or a lover, what kind of friendship do you really have? If you think your life is absolutely perfect as it is, not one thing needs to be any different, then do not for one moment begin the process of recap (however never again complain about, be frustrated about, or be stressed about any aspect of your life). However my guess is that those of you who think your life is perfect, that is only some mind fantasy, a delusional story.

When you are ready to begin the main list, try to find at least one encounter for each person (of course for some there is only one encounter) or in the case of someone you had 60 encounters with, find as many as you can remember, and make a one-word note on that encounter like: dinner, mountains, swimming, fall down stairs, movie etc. These are one word memory aids, and place those memory aids in chronological order like the list. You won’t remember every encounter with a person, and that is ok, but the more you can get the more you will help jog your memory to get to the events you have forgotten.

With a complete and ready list, one must now decide how much time they want to invest. My suggestion is to start with one hour a day for a week or two. You will notice the difference in your energy level, even with only that amount of investment. Once you get comfortable, the usual way to do recap is to begin at 9 or 10 at night, and recap all through the night until morning. It is best not to stop recap because you are tired and go to “bed” to sleep. It is your mind trying to force you to stop- just keep going. Some will do this for a day at a time, for a weekend or week, or until they have completed one phase of their life such as “university.” Sleep really won’t be needed because as you are recapping you are regaining so much energy that the restful sleep is not all that required. At times I remember falling asleep in the closet around 5 am, then getting up with my alarm at 7 feeling great. Add to this the energy-wasting patterns we will find and eliminate during the days, to even more energy we will be storing. You will find your own time that is best for you, some like to get up at 4AM for example and recap for three hours to give themselves an energy boost for the day. Remember too that longer sessions for less days (say 8 hours a night for a week) reap more benefits than 1 hour a night for 56 nights. The longer sessions keep the energy body focused. I also suggest you make a choice of how many events you are going to recap in one night, say you are going to recap 7 nights and you have 140 events to go through, that means 20 a night. You will after a little practice get to know just how many events you can get through. Others who are just going to recap every night until a period of their life is done- just keep going until your alarm goes off When recapping, don’t close your eyes, for this is a sign to your being that you are dreaming, and is also a sign to your being that whatever you see can not be denied as the truth. If you fall asleep in your box or closet that is ok, because in that case you won’t be in ordinary sleep, you in fact will be in Dreaming and thus the recap will be continuing.

Prepare your space so at to not be disturbed. Take all the phones off, and ask no one to bother you for any reason. In the course of your session you could yell or cry or laugh as experiences are relived. Usually you will make no sound at all, but it is best to be prepared. The one time it does happen, you don’t want someone coming to check on you to see of you are all right, and break you out of a key recap experience. Take your list, and start your breath (see below) and find the first person on your list, and the first event for that person. Get a mental picture of what they looked like at that event. Next set the place you were in, the more detail the better. If you were at dinner, what was on the table? What was the waiter wearing, what pictures were on the walls? Don’t analyze any of this, just observe it in all its detail. Doing so you are focusing your intent to be back at that event. When you feel that you have a good remembrance of the space and the people there, now try to observe the event exactly as it happened. For many people they may see themselves at this point, as if they were watching a movie. That’s fine. Your still in your normal mind here, but you have to get the event rolling somehow.

One now needs to use the emotions, for it the emotions that were generated that will lead us to reach our feelings in the event, and find out what really happened in the encounter. As you continue to watch the event keep asking, what am I feeling? What is happening around me that I missed? You recap one event at a time to try and be there fully. If other events come up, just let them pass, you will get to them, unless some event from further down your list keeps coming up, you can choose to recap it if you wish and then return to your list.

Play the event right through. Now see the event again, but this time not as a movie but try to see it through you own eyes of the event. Be “in” the event. You now need to feel everything you said, did or acted on in the event. You want to relive the experience which goes against our usual perception of time in which the past is gone. You must break the mental barrier or all your recap will not be very deep. You must enter the left side here and leave the mind behind. To assist yourself you can talk (even in a whisper) everything you actually said or was being thought to help get you more there, you may repeat the name of people at the event over and over, move your body if necessary, do increased breathing, yell or scream or cry- anything to get you to stop thinking and go into feeling mode. If you can break the barrier once, the other sessions will become easier and easier. Now see the event for a third time, again as a movie, but this time you focus on your healing breath and to balance and harmonize the energy from the event- healing the “self” in the movie, and the “Self” you that is watching it. This third watch can be the hardest of all, for this is the real healing of the event, where the energy hole gets filled and our held energy is released. The ego will make it hard for many, who stay locked in the second stage, crying or feeling hurt, or whatever they feel, not letting themselves see it one more time to fully heal it. Don’t give in to the suffering of your parasitic mind, get to the third round to heal. The final stage of the process while in recap of an event is to “dream” in a not-doing for you to perform in your day to day world later. It is this process that involves the south (dreaming) and north (not doing) into the eastern-western practice. This part of the practice makes it a complete practice. Without this, the band aid you just put on your wound will be easily reopened. You may see you never tell anyone you love them, so your not doing is to tell them you love them, or you always play your life safe so now you will take a risk.

The biggest problem with recap is that there is no real way to teach it, because it involves with connecting to your lost feelings and only we know how best to do that. For that reason only the base starters can be given to people, then they modify them as they see fit. As you practice, spirit will guide you in the right way, right times etc. The main key is just to have the unbending intent that you will keep on recapping and not listen to the voice in your mind that wants you to quit. It will give you a thousand reasons not to. At the beginning recap will be very tough, and it will seem we are doing nothing- until the usher appears.

It is called the usher because it will usher in a whole new period of recap. You will know when the usher has finally appeared when you are no longer seeing the event, you are fully reliving it. You are seeing through your own eyes again, only this time with far more awareness. The space you are recapping in may be gone, and you are right back at that event- a freaky thing the first time it happens. What has really happened is that we have allowed our assemblage point to move back to its exact place as at the time of the event, which energetically allows us to be right there. After experiencing the usher for the first time, our recap will be much deeper. Moments of your life that you have forgotten now begin to surface. I describe some of this at the end of the article.

Just keep making the time, even if for a while it is only ten minutes a day. Some events that you recap will only have to be done once because the investment of emotional energy in the event was very small. Others may be part of many life passes, yet each life pass you make, there will be less remaining events to “re-see” each time. You know that an event or person is done when you can remember it or them and have no emotion attached at all. It may seem like the event happened to someone else. An example was a woman that I went on a few dates with, and after recapping our time together I felt no emotion, no attachment, no need to blame her for anything…they were now just experiences in the past. I knew that my need to recap her was complete.


An added help with your recap sessions will be to include breath work. Breathing helps to remember the event and to rebalance our energy. One begins with a deep breath with the chin on the right shoulder, then the head is moved to the left shoulder with the in-breath. On the exhale the head moves to the right finishing that out-breath on the right shoulder. This shoulder to shoulder movement helps us to “sweep the scene” to see everything that happened, as well as “jiggling” our assemblage point helping it move back to its original position.

The breath also helps us to bring back our lost energy. On the in breath we breathe back our energy that we gave away at the event, and on the out-breath we give back all the energy we have from that event. Mentally do this every so often with your breath. Now I have to admit, that in my recap I found I could get tired constantly doing the head movements with the breath, so I would do 3-4 head movements then stay still for a while, until I felt the need for a “boost” and then would do a few more head swings. Again all things for you to try and see what works for you.

Just so you know, recap will not regain that many energy fibers on its own. It is simply the beginning process. The fibers are returned en mass, when we leave the recap session and go out into the world, and perform not-doing. We find from the recap actions that we created to lose those fibers in the first place, and by letting go of those doings and return to our “natural” doings, those remaining fibers just come back. To recap without the technique of not-doing will result in very little energy return- as mentioned, recap is just a process that works in connection with others.


"A perfect recall could change a warrior more
than the total control of his energy body."
-Carlos Castaneda-

After a recap session you may feel light-headed or weird, that is ok it just means that something is changing. Have something to eat and you will likely feel more grounded. Don’t worry about trying to rush the process, go at your own pace, it takes years for the average person to make it through just one life pass. A reminder that often when we finish recapping someone we may “run into them” somewhere, or someone may bring up their name for seemingly no reason when out for coffee. It is an energetic check, do you really want the energy all back to normal, or for some reason do you want to return to the old way of lost energy? Don’t worry it’s just an energetic test for you.

You can also now begin to create the relationships you really want, now that you know the truth about all of your old ones. As for the current people in your life, many things may have changed after a recap, we will know about the truth of ourself and them- which may lead to a deepening friendship or the realization we need to give them more space from us. Don’t be afraid of recapping because of what you will find, before you can let go of delusions and lies, you must see them. I also suggest that a parent not recap their young children too deeply, at least not until they are no longer emotionally dependant on you. Teenagers for example can be recapped in full. Don’t hide from recapping young children, just do it to the depth that feels right.

Usually the next day, even after a short hour session, one will feel alive with energy. The problem is that people feel they are “back to normal.” This is more like an energy band-aid. Those energy wasting habits and patterns have been around for a long time, and there are things you will need to change. The additional energy is there to help you make those changes. Another warning. Recap, if you do it well, may make you think that you are going crazy. And you could be! I’m not exaggerating this point. As the deeper events of your past become known, all of your history will become like some maddening game being played on you by some unknown force. This is good, it means your True Mind is waking up, and normal mind has no idea how to deal with it. I guarantee that you will likely try to use more mind, more logic, more reason to explain everything that is happening to you- but once your True Mind wakes up, there is no turning back. You will have to prepare yourself for the “onslaughts of infinity.”

This brings us to true recap. All your active recap will just be preparing and loosening up your assemblage point to get you ready for spontaneous (passive ) recap. The more we practice, the more of these spontaneous recaps will happen when we trip and fall down and begin crying, but have no idea why; or a song on the radio touches off the most odd feelings. The smile of someone’s face, the backfiring of a car will take us to the memory of an event long buried. Most however just ignore this odd feeling in the moment to go back to the internal dialogue of the mind. Those buried events will come without warning, usually “triggered” by something similar in our outer environment. When a passive recap comes up, you have only one important thing in that moment, let that lost event unfold, for if you don’t, it may take years for it to come up again. Thus recap is really all about perception and awareness, what we did not have then, we learn to have now. We will learn how to move more slowly and pay attention to our feelings now, so as to not have to recap the current events of our lives later. In reality every event is happening just for you, only for your own eyes, and with enough recap we can learn how to understand the meaning of every event that is happening to us, without ever asking how you know.

Recap is meant to be worked with your challenges now, but we use the list to guide us in practice, and to allow us to get through events that seem to have no bearing to what is happening now. So I remind you, if an old boyfriend is coming to town to visit you tomorrow, no matter who is on your list, recap the old boyfriend, he is in your now, he is your current challenge, that is where you need the immediate clarity. We also recap now moment by moment whenever a thought from our past comes up, and will keep doing this until the thought no longer appears on its own. The memory stays when one needs to use it willingly in conversation, but it can no longer pop up on its own accord.

Complete one pass and the second life pass is very different, like only tiny parts of the event are focused on. It is like the event itself is no longer important, you just see the person and get a feeling for them to look and see if you have any hidden energy. Don’t search for specific events, search for the feeling and hold that. Let the feelings guide you, but not to an event, you’ve already done that. Let it take you to a moment within the event. The second pass can not be taught. The first pass sees the truth of the events, the second the truth of the feelings. Thus it equals lots of bursts of unremembered feelings. You are working now directly at the level of the energy. It all explains don Juan’s statement better, “I thought nothing had happened to me, when in fact everything had happened to me.” No real need to focus on it now, I just mention it for those who have completed one pass and may wonder what to do next.

Continuing recap practitioners will often recap what are called “manifestations of the spirit”, omens, strong synchronicities, or when they felt truly met with the spirit. As well any time where there was a strong presence of death (illness, serious accidents, close calls) for they are very close to the void in those moments. Of course what are called “meetings with the nagual” should be recapped as often as possible.




1 Sanchez Toltec Path of Recapitulation, p.7

2 For info on the box and how to build one you can see Victor Sanchez’s Toltec Path of Recapitulation

3You can use yearbooks or old phone directories to help.

4 or you can create a second list. This second list will have the names of all the people on your first list that you had sexual encounters with. They will still be on your first list, but this second list of sex experiences is done first. You start here because we give away a lot of energy during sexual encounters, so getting this energy back at the beginning of the work will give us the extra boost that will allow us to go through the more “mundane” encounters on the first list. So if you went for three dinners with Sue and sex once, you recap the one sex experience on list two- and when you get to Sue back on list one, you review the three dinners. People will also likely find how boring their sex life has been, how little awareness they really had during these supposed sacred encounters. How often were you thinking of someone else, how often wishing you were somewhere else etc. You will find that few times the sex was powerful, were times you were present and your mind only wanted to be there at that experience. One will also see how manipulative one has been, or how easy it was for other to manipulate us sexually, and why sex acts usually involve so many hooks which lead to energy loss. This is the reason for recapping them first.