History of Hypnosis: The Hidden Story

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History of Hypnosis: The Hidden Story

History of Hypnosis: The Hidden Story

Hypnosis History

Hypnosis is a therapeutic tool that is just as old as man himself. For as far as we can trace through time, we can find documents of hypnosis being used to heal and bring change. Hypnosis has had many names throughout the centuries, and its usage is traceable to 3000 BC in Egypt. The new and old testaments speak of what can be inferred to be hypnosis. Ancient Romans and Greeks had temples where those who were seeking to heal were induced into a sleep-like trance,  the priestess then interpreted their dreams. Through rhythmic beating and constant chanting together with eye fixation, shamans can produce catalepsy in the body, and this creates an illusion that helps the shaman give the appearance of having magical powers.

Most of what has been done throughout the past by shamans, witches, priestesses, is attributable to having a firm belief, expectation, imagination, and conviction in the person being healed, and the singing often takes the form of what we can call suggestion. If the most spiritual and influential person you know tells you that you will feel better, you are more inclined to do just that.  In most cases where hypnosis is administered to an ill person, they would have eventually recovered, but the intervention helped to speed up the healing process.

Healers throughout the world and time believe that emotions, thoughts, and your body can influence each other. Therefore, you can control a sickness by realizing the specific feelings and thoughts that keep you in the same behavioral patterns.

The Romans said, “Mens Sana in Corpore Sano.” A healthy mind in a healthy body.  This quote confirms that for many centuries it has been known and believed that our physical and emotional state has an impact on one another.  Think about it, our health declines after periods of stress or as a consequence of a dramatic life-changing event.

Hypnosis Pioneers

In 1750, Newton made scientific discoveries about the division between mind and body in science. Since the brain is often determined to be under the control of religion, and the body under the management of science. This division is the reason why medicine is different for the mind, body, and soul. Experiences that traumatize you are not only remembered on an emotional level but also in the physical realm as well. The charge of our emotions in different traumas directly influences our health and immune system.

Anton Mesmer (1734-1815) began modern hypnosis in the 18th century. Mesmer was a medical graduate from the famous school of Vienna, and after he studied as a Jesuit priest, he developed an interest in magnetism. He came Europe’s expert at magnetic healing, which is what happens when magnets are passed over the body to jump-start healing. The results were outstanding, and he became very famous.

Throughout his life, he believed that all living things contain a magnetic fluid, and if someone has enough of this liquid, they would be in perfect form. This is where Animal Magnetism originates. One day, Mesmer had forgotten his magnets, so he pretended to have them in his hands and waved his hands over his patients and was surprised to find that they got better! From then on, he believed that he had enough magnetic fluid in him to impact the cures.

The person who coined the terms hypnosis and hypnotism was James Braid (1975-1860) in 1843. He was a Scottish surgeon who was working in Manchester. Throughout his work, he found out that most people quickly fall into a trance if their eyes were fixated on a bright object.  He believed that a neurological process was invoked that the process could be beneficial when no apparent origin is found for a person’s disease or disorder.

Another Scottish surgeon, James Esdaile (1808-1859) who was working in India used eye fixation to help his patients prepare for surgery. In a slow waving motion, he would put them into a deep hypnotic slumber, creating full amnesia throughout the entire body.

Esdaile and Braid were both among the first in their scientific research of the use of hypnosis. They pioneered the removal of hypnosis from the realms of the unknown and magical. They experimented with what could be accomplished with it when they use it to help people with disorders. Other scientists that paved the way include, Bernheim, Freud, Bernheim, and Brewer. Freud, unfortunately, was responsible for hypnotherapy’s demise when he stopped using it.

Hypnotherapy Explained

The term hypnotherapy comes from the application of therapy during hypnosis. It can be used to change behavioral patterns, such as gambling, drinking, smoking or eating. It’s instrumental in curing phobias like fear of flying, spiders, and bugs, being outside, or fear of lightning. It also helps build confidence, motivation, reduce stress, anxiety, and lastly deal with pain control.

Phsycomatic problems are the main issue hypnotherapy combats. Psychosomatic means problems of the mean which are controlled and rooted in our subconscious. We follow our subconscious mind regardless of it goes against our logic and reason. Therefore, hypnotherapy bypasses the conscious and allows the helpful life-changing suggestions for change to be directly fed to the subconscious mind.

Hypnotic suggestions have a cumulative impact, so every hypnotic recommendation that you listen to is being reinforced in your subconscious mind that will be acted upon. It will also happen way faster than if you were suggesting to your unconscious mind.

Hypno-analysis is used for problems where an event or events exist in the past. It’s used to find the sensitive events and help relive the motor skills and emotion behind them, therefore freeing the patient from the afflicting thought pattern or behavior. Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) and healing suggestions are used to build on the desire for change to support and strengthen movement into a more significant future.

No, Hypnotherapists cannot control your mind!

Hypnotherapy allows you to take full control of your mental ability to bring the changes you desire. Contrary to popular belief, you are always in control during hypnosis and hypnotherapy, and the therapist can’t make you do anything you don’t want to do. A good therapist and a motivated client who wishes to make an impact can achieve success 100% of the time.

Everyone can be hypnotized; you can do it yourself or find a great therapist to work with.

Hypnosis feels like a heightened state of awareness and relaxation. You are prone to drift away as if you were daydreaming.

Hypnotherapy can help you gain control on the following issues and more:


This article was also published on October 30th, at RestoredCure (http://restoredcure.com/2017/10/30/hypnotherapy-benefits-and-history/)




Yassir is an expert blogger and a Stanford graduate. He is the founder of RestoredCure and has so much knowledge to share!



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