That seems to be the million dollar question. What is it? A separate state of mind or as some would suggest; someone who has simply accepted a suggestion as fact?

There is and will continue to be much controversy as to whether it is an actual state that is separate and independent from the normal waking state.

Examples of the use of hypnosis date back to the Egyptian Sleep Temples, Dr James Braid 1775 to 1860 coined the term Hypnosis after the Greek god Hypnos because of its similarity to sleep in practice. Franz Anton Mesmer 1734 to 1815 was and is still considered the father of modern day Hypnosis by many. Not truly knowing what he was doing Mesmer was denounced as a fraud and finished out his final years doing sideshow demonstrations. This in fact was one of the reasons Hypnosis has survived as an art and a science today. In many places Hypnosis was outlawed because it was considered witchcraft! Until recently Oregon and Kansas had laws on the books stating that public demonstrations of Hypnosis were felony offences!

Ignorance and the fear that someone could control your mind in true Hollywood fashion has kept Hypnosis as a fringe discipline, however the study of suggestion has been perused heavily by Madison Avenue and today we see advertisements everywhere that could be seen as Hypnotic.

Movie Stars & Pro Athletes use Hypnosis to be in top form and many have attributed their success to just that! Napoleon Hill, Dale Carnegie, Norman Vincent Peale, Anthony Robbins and many others have used Hypnosis in their training of people for greater success.

The Amazing Kreskin , states that Hypnosis does not exist in his book (Secrets of the Amazing Kreskin) In one paragraph, then in the next stated he had personally Hypnotized over 35,000 people. For his theory that Hypnosis was a nonexistent state. He proceeded to do away with any sort of hypnotic induction during his show. He noticed that his failure rate was much higher with his volunteers yet he was able to obtain the same phenomena but with a much smaller group then before. He also spoke of faith & prestige having a massive effect on suggestibility. (Authors note: Kreskin was a well known public figure at the height of his career when he did away with standard inductions.) Although Kreskin decries Hypnosis he teaches what hypnotists consider basic principles of Self Hypnosis.

Due to the effect of Hollywood and poor press many people have renamed Hypnosis to sell it to the masses. Some due to the fact that in some circles, an ignorant few believe it to be witchcraft and that you can be possessed while hypnotized, others strictly to further their own agenda's

Prestige has a huge impact on most people. If you believe it is true then it must be, that is why every drug today is tested against the placebo effect.

Psychiatrists and Psychologists today are at war with what they call lay practitioners or lay Hypnotists stating that they are dangerous. While an untrained or poorly trained individual is a danger to himself and others, most advances in Hypnosis today have come from lay practitioners. The major reason for the war though comes down to money, the almighty dollar. Lay Hypnotists and other alternative practitioners are taking money out of the pockets of psychologist's and the psychiatrists. There are thousands of reported cases of individuals who under the care of qualified psychologists received no improvement then saw a Hypnotist for only a few sessions and found relief. Obviously this is going to cause a rift in some circles, while in others it is fostering a new age of awareness.

We have all seen someone bored while listening to another, their skin tone changes their eyes become glassy and were they suggested to repeat they what they had been told they would have no clue. Were they in trance, or simply daydreaming?

Dave Elman 1900 to 1967 said that hypnosis can be achieved with anything, that the key was fixture on the internal versus external world. Milton Erickson 1901 to 1980 was a key player in the use of Hypnosis & NLP in the 21st Century and his extraordinary success was in part to his innate ability to get people to focus inward. he used many techniques as a Hypnotist most popularized by metaphor and story telling.

Today in a quality Hypnosis show many different disciplines are utilized including sound and lighting, techniques from Milton Erickson, Dave Elman, Ormand McGill, and many others to induce this state we call Hypnosis. The primary goal of a Stage Hypnotist is to get the volunteers to focus inward till they are in a hyper-suggestive state then envelop the volunteers in a series of skits that are comedic and humorous. Of note; many volunteers leave the stage with an amnesia for what had taken place as well as a profound sense of relaxation even though they may have been jumping up and down a stage only minutes before.

So what is Hypnosis? In my opinion it is "A state in which a person is highly suggestible". Perhaps this is not a good answer however for now it will have to do. Of most importance though the skill of Hypnosis is not just that, it is as much art as skill and the discipline is a powerful force in the therapeutic community. Today it is widely used to help people lose weight, stop smoking, for stress reduction, pain control, Tinnitus, Fibromyalgia, and many other issues.

The Human body has the power to heal itself that is well proven. Hypnosis just may be that tool that allows the body to do it more efficiently.

I leave it to you the reader to examine the information widely available and come to your own conclusion. Do not allow prestige or letters after someone's name to pressure you into a belief either which way.

Personally, it is an amazing art and science that has transformed my life Perhaps it will transform yours.

Justin James, June 22 2007

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The Hypnosis Company.
PO BOX 2012 Ocean Shores WA, 98569

International:  (702) 430-6067
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