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The Science of Hypnosis

The Science of Hypnosis

Hypnosis: that’s just a fun gimmick for stage shows and plot twists, right? Well, turns out there might be more to it.

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Hypnosis can be considered as a process of inducing an altered state of consciousness.When in an hypnotic state you are not asleep and you are not fully awake. You are in a trance-state for lack of a better word. A trance is a state of mind in which a hypnotised person is able to free their mind from the constraints of their five senses, and their other conscious mental activities. Hypnosis is a state of awareness, dominated by the subconscious mind. This trance state is typically experienced as relaxing, blissful, dreamy or for some it just feels “different”.Hypnotism is the process of inducing a hypnotic trance in someone. Hypnotherapy is the practical application of Hypnotism, to help people overcome life problems and difficulties.Hypnotism is not some form of mind control, imposed upon the subject by the hypnotist. In fact it is not possible for anyone to hypnotise anybody else. What actually happens during the induction of a hypnotic trance, is that the hypnotist acts as a facilitator for self-hypnosis. It is completely impossible for anyone to “hypnotise” another person. All that a hypnotist can do is to create an atmosphere for the subject, which, when coupled with guidance from the hypnotist, creates in the subject the conditions that enable them to enter a hypnotic state of mind. It is in this induced hypnotic state that beneficial suggestions can be made.Ten Misconceptions About Hypnosis (r1):1. When you are hypnotized you are asleep, unconscious and are totally unaware of your surroundings.No you’re not. For many people, hypnosis is accompanied by heightened sense of awareness.2. A hypnotist is someone with unusual mental powers and magical abilities, which he can use to control people and make them do as he wishes, even against their will.No.3. People in a hypnotic trance may not wake up easily and they may remain in a hypnotic state for a long time. Some people may never wake up!No way. A hypnotised person is not asleep, and coming out of a hypnotic trance is easily achieved.4. The mind is so powerful that hypnosis can effect a cure for just about anything in only one or two sessions.Whilst hypnotherapy has great therapeutic value, unfortunately this is not true.5. Hypnosis and meditation are the same thing or hypnosis is a form of meditation and vice versa, and all forms of mind-altering practices are one and the same thing.This is definitely not the case. Hypnosis and meditation are very different experiences.6. Whilst under hypnosis people’s memories are improved and they can recall everything that has happened to them in the past. Similarly, hypnosis can be used to permanently erase the memory of anything that has happened to someone.Hypnosis can help people to have a better recall, and to re-frame our past experiences. 7. Hypnosis is anti-religion and it is the work of the devil. While you are in an hypnotic state your soul can be possessed by devils or demons or both.No.8. A hypnotist can hypnotise people at long distances by telepathic means and can put someone in a trance any time the hypnotist wishes.Not possible.9.  It is possible to hypnotise anyone at anytime, anywhere and under any circumstances, even if they don’t want to be hypnotised.No. All hypnosis is a form of self-hypnosis. The hypnotist is simply a facilitator in a process the person wants to experience.10.  Whilst in an hypnotic  trance, a person can be made to tell the truth. Or alternatively, a person is unable to lie while in a hypnotic trance.Nope. People in hypnotic trances are fully aware of what’s going on, and as capable of being truthful or lying as when they are ‘awake’.Reference:r1 –  They Call It Hypnosis. Contributors: Robert A. Baker – author, Prometheus Books.  Amherst, NY, 1990. © David R. Durham.

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