Hypnosis Can it really be done

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Main Question or Discussion Point

Can it really be done?

If yes, how?
 
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  • #2
Ivan Seeking
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Originally posted by Tail
Can it really be done?

If yes, how?
There is a link that addresses this just below:
"Hypnosis's magic is that it works."
https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=4738 [Broken]

This is just a news link...perhaps some experts will chime in. I think that hypnosis is recognized as inducing a "real" state of mind, but the use of this for memory recall, stop smoking programs and other objectives is highly suspect at best.
 
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  • #3
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I actually have a "textbook" in
hypnosis, which is full of very
scholarly studies by Psychiatrists
and Psychologists.

The nutshell version of how and
why is:

Peoples minds are organized ac-
cording to a hierarchy, with
conscious, executive functioning
at the top, and many descending
levels of more automatic behav-
ior controls beneath it.

The relaxation, swinging watch,
monotonous speech, and all that
are aimed at tiring out and hope-
fully putting to sleep, the
executive consciousness, in order
to slip instructions past it
directly into one of the lower,
more automatic levels of control,
where it will be accepted without
examination and analysis.

The theory is that the lower down
the level is, the more things are
believed without question, the
more childlike the consciousness.
Therefore success in hypnosis
is dependent on the extent to which the executive function can
be stupified by the preliminary
rigamarole.

Zooby
 
  • #4
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3
Ivan this doesn't belong in this forum. Hypnosis is a medically accepted form of psychotherapy practiced by many psychiatrists. Are you familiar with regression therapy?. Hypnosis is not 100 percent sucessful. It's dependent upon a number of factors such as the succeptability of the patient, and the trust factor between patient and doctor. It is practiced as a form of entertainment also, but there's a place for it in psychology, not just on Oprah. Indeed it's recognized by the AMA and the APA as a valid form of treatment. Any doctor would confirm this. Move back please.
 
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  • #5
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Is it actually allowed to practice?

How can it be learned? (No, I don't want to learn it...)

How does a hypnotized person behave?

Is it possible to, for example, place hot iron on a hypnotized person's hand without leaving a mark if you're telling them it doesn't hurt and is not hot? Or is this part just fairytales?
 
  • #6
Abnaki
"Hypnosis is a medically accepted form of psychotherapy practiced by many psychiatrists. Are you familiar with regression therapy?."

Dream on Zantra . Are you familiar with this guy ? http://www.brianweiss.com He practices "regression therapy" because he thinks people used to be some one else ( in a different life ) ...can you say quack - quack ?



" As a traditional psychotherapist, Dr. Brian Weiss was astonished and skeptical when one of his patients began recalling past-life traumas that seemed to hold the key to her recurring nightmares and anxiety attacks. His skepticism was eroded, however, when she began to channel messages from "the space between lives..."

Gee, how scientific ..." the space between lives This is just Ouija board nonsense !
 
  • #7
I have many qualms with the things people think about hypnosis. My mother is a hypnotist, and zoobyshoe's explanation is exact.

It isn't a form of mind control like people have come to believe it is. I have been hypnotized myself and all it consists of, is a deep, deep state of meditative relaxation which opens up various levels of the subconscious to suggestions. It can be used for productive things like quitting smoking, or weight loss but also for other theatrical uses like those that you see on tv.

The main misconception about hypnosis is that the patient is completely helpless to the power of the hypnotist. In the words of Churchill 'This is stuff and junk up with which I will not put'. (or however it was he put it...)

You have complete control, you are fully aware of anything going on around you, the only time when you won't remember what happens is when the hypnotist suggests it, and you accept that suggestion. If you don't want to forget it, you'll remember everything about it.

Everything that happens is all permitted to happen by the person being hypnotized. Anyone who ever tells you about being entirely without control is lying, or seriously misinformed.
 
  • #8
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Are there gradations of hypnosis? Like, deeper or lighter hypnosis?

If I agreed to give up smoking while hypnotized, would I indeed give it up?
 
  • #9
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Tail,
Hypnosis can help with quitting smoking, but it varies with the success rate. If you are already extremely motivated to stop, then the hypnotic suggestion will have much more fertile ground to work in. If you are more suggestible, then it should work better. It would rarely work with anyone, with just one session, unless you were almost to the point where you would have and could have quit all by yourself. The more conflicting goals within your mind, the shorter lifespan a suggestion will have.
 
  • #10
Ivan Seeking
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Originally posted by Zantra
Ivan this doesn't belong in this forum. Hypnosis is a medically accepted form of psychotherapy practiced by many psychiatrists. Are you familiar with regression therapy?. Hypnosis is not 100 percent sucessful. It's dependent upon a number of factors such as the succeptability of the patient, and the trust factor between patient and doctor. It is practiced as a form of entertainment also, but there's a place for it in psychology, not just on Oprah. Indeed it's recognized by the AMA and the APA as a valid form of treatment. Any doctor would confirm this. Move back please.
Zantra,
I think one of us has missed something here... I moved this from the Pseudo section to Other Sciences because I thought this qualified as a scientific question.
 
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  • #11
Ivan Seeking
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Originally posted by Zantra
Ivan this doesn't belong in this forum. Hypnosis is a medically accepted form of psychotherapy practiced by many psychiatrists. Are you familiar with regression therapy?. Hypnosis is not 100 percent sucessful. It's dependent upon a number of factors such as the succeptability of the patient, and the trust factor between patient and doctor. It is practiced as a form of entertainment also, but there's a place for it in psychology, not just on Oprah. Indeed it's recognized by the AMA and the APA as a valid form of treatment. Any doctor would confirm this. Move back please.
I have heard of some disasters using regressive hypnosis. One documentary that I watched on PBS chronicled the events involving several families. In the one case, using regressive hypnosis, the psychiatrists, the mother, and children were convinced that they led secret lives. The kids recalled satanic rituals and animal sacrifices. The mother actually believed that without her knowledge, her and her kids were participating in these rituals. Then, one day as one of the children recanted the events of a recent animal sacrifice, the mother recognized the story as a scene from the latest Star Wars movie.

Quite a number of similar stories can now be found. Of course, I don't meant to incriminate the entire subject, but that some "experts" use this improperly seems to be an unavoidable conclusion. The professor was I think at Harvard; and may have been Mack...I would have to check.
 
  • #12
It's unfortunate that such a powerful treatment has been used in such an unprofessional manner for so long that people begin to call it things like "Ouija board nonsense" and use it to play with people's minds.
 
  • #13
Originally posted by Tail
Is it actually allowed to practice?
Yes. My mother is a hypnotist.

How can it be learned? (No, I don't want to learn it...)
You can take classes from a hypnotist who is authorized to do so, however, you need to have a background in medicine or social work. This is to prevent people that wish to use it just for the hell of it from... using it just for the hell of it.

How does a hypnotized person behave?
It depends on the situation and the person. Normally, they'd just lie there relaxed in a near-sleep state while the hypnotist tells the patient various things. A stage hypnotist will make the person behave however they want to after the sleep-like phase of the performance is completed.

Is it possible to, for example, place hot iron on a hypnotized person's hand without leaving a mark if you're telling them it doesn't hurt and is not hot? Or is this part just fairytales?
Again this depends entirely on the person. It could be compared to the people who go into a trancelike state and then walk on coals. It's pretty much the same thing. If the person's mind is strong enough, and suggestible enough, they might believe that the hot iron doesn't hurt.

Another danger of show hypnosis I'd like to bring up is this.

Lets say the hypnotist is having the people imagine they're 6 and having a day in the park with daddy. Sounds harmless right? But if there's a woman in the audience who is just sitting listening and may be in a state which leaves her open to hypnotic suggestion, and maybe she was raped by daddy as a child. This would conjure horrid memories and she would be in a terrible, terrible state, with no one knowing what was going on.

There are very serious dangers with show hypnotism, and I've chosen to boycott it. I think it would be best if, unless it's for a medical or health reason and not for entertainment, you don't support hypnosis either.
 
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  • #14
Ivan Seeking
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by cytokinesis
Yes. My mother is a hypnotist.
What if someone like your mother is around to hypnotize you frequently? Are there any known problems from repeated use of this on one person...say once daily for example?

By the way, I was hypnotized once; a very cool experience!
I have long practiced self hypnosis [relaxation techniques] also, but this is not like the real thing.
 
  • #15
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Originally posted by Ivan Seeking


What if someone like your mother is around to hypnotize you frequently? Are there any known problems from repeated use of this on one person...say once daily for example?
You remember the "little flashy
thing" in Men In Black?
 
  • #16
hahahahaahhaha

No, as far as I believe, there are no 'side effects' from repeated use of hypnosis (no brain cancer like the flashy thing). It's not like a drug where the brain is being physically harmed each time the person uses it. If anything, I would think it opened up this person's mind to various levels of conciousness. Since it is sort of like a meditative state and if the hypnotist gave the proper suggestions, the patient could very well reach nirvana. I could see it being entirely possible, it would just take a lot of work. When you're the only one meditating, it's much easier to focus than when you're one of a few people meditating.
 
  • #17
Abnaki
cytokinesis, I was responding to Zantra's assertion that hypnotic regression therapy is APA and AMA recogonized . I , in no way was implying that all hypnotists are practicing ouija board nonsense , certainly not your mom . It is a real effect and has been used effectively for ethical purposes for many , many years . The stage show hypnotists and doctors on the fringes of their profession have indeed invoked a negative response on this subject .

If Zooby's description is accurate (as Ivan's link is informative ) ...the method for introduction of suggestions/commands relies on breaching the individuals conscious defence mechanisms by way of a induced sleep-like state . Could other states of mind also lend itself to these persuasion techniques , such as fear or pain ?

----------------------------------

For futher reading on Notorious hyponotists , read about : Dr. Louis Jolyon "Jolly" West ( Vietnam era Pheonix Program ) and Ewin Cameron ( APA President and "sleep room"commandant ) .
 
  • #18
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Hyponosis is real, and is commonly studied in psychology (yes, I did study psychology a bit).
 
  • #19
I didn't think you were implying my mom did that stuff, I was simply using your phrase as an example of how people take hypnosis nowadays.

It doesn't breach any defensive barriers of the conscious mind. It merely opens a channel to the subconscious through the conscious. the patient is fully awake and aware of everything going on at the time of hypnotism but I suppose it might make some people a bit more open to emotional triggers such as fear and pain.

Hypnosis is a very powerful tool, and like a lot of more common tools, it can be either good or bad. A car in the hands of the wrong person is very bad, but a car in the possession of a responsible driver is a perfectly alright thing.
 
  • #20
Abnaki
Thanks for the reply Cyto !
Your description deals with a willing person intent on bettering their lives . For them a channel is opened . If a person was subjected to this manipulation against his will , then a "breach" has occured .

Would this be correct ? :
The less diserning subconscious can be accessed using drugs , stress ( fear and pain ) and by electronic means that can facilitate a response where commands / suggestions can be introduced without the rigorous tests the conscious mind uses to determine what is logical and correct .
 
  • #21
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Abnaki,

What you're describing falls under
the term "brainwashing".

While the cold facts of the tech-
nique rely on the same understand-
ing of the hierarchy of the mind
and how it can be manipulated,
comparing brainwashing to hypno-
sis is like comparing rape to
making love.
 
  • #22
Abnaki
Zooby , I think you are correct when talking about the extremes . If someone is a knowing participant , then the term coercive mind manipulation is not applicable . On the other hand , if a deliberate attempt to influence a person to act a certain way , after producing trauma within this person ...then an assault did indeed occur .

There also are hypnotic tactics that do not need a sleep-like state to be effective . They instead rely on an emotional response to access the malleable subconscious , as opposed to an intellectual one . This method is used extensively in advertizing , PR activities and government . It seems to work best when carefull scrutiny of the introduced "suggestion" is bypassed , then relegated to an emotional region .
 
  • #23
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Abnaki,

What you describe in your second
paragraph, to extend my analogy
of hypnosis with sex, might be
termed seduction. It became
well known a couple decades ago as
subliminal suggestion.
 
  • #24
Abnaki
"seduction" ? As in sexual conquest ?
If it's unwelcome then the term would be manipulation and assault .
 
  • #25
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Hmmm...Intense. And behind
al this there is some terrible
experience with hypnosis you wish
to report?
 

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