Hypnosis is a state of intense concentration or altered state of consciousness when a person can be more receptive to new ideas and suggestions. They may display heightened psychic awareness.
The technique of hypnosis has been known and used for centuries, it was practised in ancient Greece, Egypt and India. The term hypnosis comes from the Greek word Hypnos, the Greek god of sleep.
It has been shown that hypnosis can help with performance, especially if positive suggestion is made. It has also been shown that hypnosis can help with memory and learning and can form part of a treatment plan for psychological disorders and behaviour modification. Hypnosis is often used by mediums to communicate with spirits and is the preferred method for past life recall.
Individual response to hypnosis can vary enormously. It is thought that the majority of the population – around 85% can be hypnotized, although only a small percentage actually achieve a deep trance.
Several steps seem essential to achieving an altered state, these include deep relaxation, concentration, turning inwards, focusing on specific sounds words or images and choosing to change ones conscious state.
There also appears to be 3 major stages of hypnosis: Light, in which the individual feels lethargic but is aware of what is going on around them ; Cataleptic in which the muscles become tense; and somnambulistic, which is a state of deep trance where the subject can be manipulated by the suggestions of the hypnotist and experience psi phenomena.
Contrary to popular belief hypnosis cannot be used to force people to do things against their will. In a sense hypnosis is like a guided meditation, the individual passes through a series of steps to go deeper into the unconscious, but actually hears every word during the process. Hypnosis is achieved when the brainwaves slow down and the individual reaches such an intense level of concentration that he or she blocks out any interference or distraction to his or her focus. During this state of intense concentration certain innate abilities are heightened including imagination, memory and suggestibility. All these abilities are linked to the initiative part of the brain which explains why hypnosis is considered a powerful tool by psychics and those seeking intuitive insight.
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