The reason to remember our past lives is to help us recognize how they have formulated who we are in the present moment. Every bit of fear, disdain, pain and reaction is a hiccup from a past life. If we are not resonating with absolute Joy, Love, Abundance, Beauty, and Wholeness, there is something in our past that has pushed us away from being in the flow of them.
It is our job to awaken and figure out what has interfered with our being in the current of the highest vibratory rate possible, and get ourselves back in the game. A painful experience is a choice. Are we going to look at it objectively to see what it is trying to show us? Or are we going to bury it back into our subconscious and throw more dirt on it?
Each memory, realization, and epiphany is us standing on a precipice and deciding to be greater than we were the moment before. It is us accepting to be free. It is us throwing down the gauntlet on convention and choosing to peel away the layers. Each nugget of truth that we embrace leads us closer to our ultimate empowerment.