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    1. #1
      Member AcidBasick's Avatar
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      Hypnotism - Does it Have Practical Uses?

      Hypnotism is said to be a powerful tool in the manipulation of the mind, as well as body. It can be used to calm fears, recall memories, control emotions, and quell other problems that the psyche may face.

      What is hypnosis and does it actually have any practical uses in modern society?

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypnotism

      Some theories view hypnosis as an altered state of consciousness, others as a type of focused attention.
      Psychologists have recently researched hypnosis and found a strong correlation between the ease of putting someone in a state of 'hypnosis' and their level of suggestibility. Generally, under hypnosis people become more susceptible to suggestion, causing changes in the way they feel, think, and behave, although contrary to popular belief they do still remain theoretically in control of their actions.
      This suggestibility has led some psychologists to believe that hypnosis does not actually correspond to any underlying mechanism of the human mind, but is merely a social construct so well-known that strong social expectations are played out by the person who believes that they are in a state of hypnosis, with people behaving in a way that they think a hypnotized person would behave, placing the phenomenon in a purely social aspect. However, other claims that hypnosis has been used with variable success for hundreds of applications, including entertainment, analgesia and psychoanalysis are widespread and well-documented.
      Controlling pain has been documented - although most likely not proven.

      Other doctors had better results, especially in the use of hypnosis in pain control, a report in 1842 described an amputation performed on a hypnotized subject without pain. The report was widely dismissed and there was strong resistance in the medical profession to hypnotism, but other successful reports followed. Dr. James Esdaile (1805-1859) performed over 300 operations using hypnosis as pain control. The development of chemical anaesthetics soon saw the replacement of hypnotism in this role.

      The modern study of hypnotism is usually considered to have begun in the 1930s with Clark Leonard Hull at Yale. An experimental psychologist his work Hypnosis and Suggestibility (1933) was a rigorous study of the phenomena, using statisical and experimental analysis. The main result of Hull's study was to rein in the extravagant claims of hypnotists, especially regarding extraordinary improvements in cognition or the senses under hypnosis. Hull's experiments did show the reality of some classical phenomena - hypnotic anaesthesia and post-hypnotic amnesia; hypnosis could also induce moderate increases in certain physical capacities and change the threshold of sensory stimulation, attenuation effects could be especially dramatic.

      The general or popular definition of hypnosis.

      Hypnosis, in itself, is just a state of mental and physical relaxation, along with a more focused sense of concentration. Although the eyes are usually closed, hypnosis is not sleep (as is often popularly assumed), and most people find that they are more aware of smells, sounds, and feelings than usual. This concentrated awareness is what allows the hypnotherapist to plant positive suggestions and images in the mind of the client to bring about lasting changes.

      Hypnosis may also be able to alter the physical body as well. I remember watching a program on the Discovery channel a few years back on Stigmata and how it could happen without the use of implements and chemicals. In most cases, the markings could be easily explained as being some kind of chemical solution rubbed onto the palms and feet, or the process of gouging oneself with a sharp object; however, other times the cause or creation of the sores could not be explained. The program then suggested that perhaps the mind was producing a chemical that was destroying flesh in particular areas. It stated that an experiment was done in which a subject was hypnotised and led to believe that they were being touched with a hot object. When the patient was tapped with it, a small blister formed in that area despite the object itself being room temperature.

      The program related this phenomenon with that of Stigmata - and that the mind may be able to manipulate the body.

      http://science.howstuffworks.com/hypnosis4.htm

      There does seem to be changed activity in the brain, however. The most notable data comes from electroencephalographs (EEGs), measurements of the electrical activity of the brain. Extensive EEG research has demonstrated that brains produce different brain waves, rhythms of electrical voltage, depending on their mental state. Deep sleep has a different rhythm than dreaming, for example, and full alertness has a different rhythm than relaxation.

      So what kind of applications could hypnotism be used for?

      In the last section, we looked at hypnosis as a means of reversing bad habits. A related application of hypnotism is psychiatric hypnotherapy. In a therapy session, a psychiatrist may hypnotize his or her subject in order to work with deep, entrenched personal problems. The therapy may take the form of breaking negative patterns of behavior, as with mass habit-control programs. This can be particularly effective in addressing phobias, unreasonable fears of particular objects or situations. Another form of psychiatric hypnotherapy involves bringing underlying psychiatric problems up to the conscious level. Accessing fears, memories and repressed emotions can help to clarify difficult issues and bring resolution to persistent problems.
      Another controversial form of hypnotism is medical hypnotherapy. Doctors and spiritual leaders all over the world claim that hypnotic suggestion can ease pain and even cure illness in some patients. The underlying idea behind this is that the mind and body are inextricably intertwined. When you suggest to the subconscious that the body does not feel pain, or that the body is free of disease, the subconscious may actually bring about the change.

      There is a great deal of anecdotal evidence to support this idea. Using only hypnotic suggestion as an anesthetic, thousands of women have made it through childbirth with minimal pain and discomfort. Countless cancer patients swear by hypnosis, claiming that it helps to manage the pain of chemotherapy, and some former patients credit their recovery to hypnotherapy.

      What do skeptics say?

      Modern skeptics have a sound and convincing explanation of this unusual state. Hypnotic subjects aren't actually in a trance state, they argue, they only think they are. Social pressure and the influence of the hypnotist are often enough to convince people that they should act a certain way. When they find themselves heeding the suggestions, they think they must be in a hypnotic trance. Proponents of this theory contend that this belief alone may be powerful enough to bring about remarkable changes in a person. If you think someone is compelling you to act a certain way, you will act that way. If you think hypnotic suggestion will ease your pain, your mind will bring about this feeling.
      In the general sense, this phenomenon is known as the placebo effect. In numerous studies, people who were given ordinary sugar pills behaved and felt differently only because they thought they should. It's clear that the mind can influence all aspects of the physical body, so it makes sense that a firmly held belief can reduce pain or even help treat a disease.

      In conclusion.

      But in the end, this explanation of hypnosis amounts to pretty much the same thing as the trance theory. When you absolutely convince somebody that you've brought about a change in their subconscious, they register this information as a fact. Like any fact, this information will take root in the subconscious mind. So, even if the hypnotic state is nothing more than a figment of the subject's imagination, hypnotic suggestions can still reform their deeply held beliefs. The end result is the same!


      I suppose my questions are: Does hypnotism have any basis in reality? If so, do you think it could be used as curative medicine for bodily diseases or social disorders? Why is hypnotism not widely accepted or acknowledged?

      Is the power of the mind is far greater then we give it credit? I believe there are many benifits and unknowns in hypnotism that we should be more aware of, or at least investigate and study further. If we did find that the body could heal the body to some extent, and the methods to do it were simple and effective, consider the applications. Perhaps most of us have grown accustomed to being misled by something that sounds ridiculously like a panacea. Or maybe we find the notion of non-chemicals healing diseases and abnormalities within the body absurd.

      I've tried self-hypnosis and it really did ease me through a difficult situation. I felt more relaxed and more in control.

      I read somewhere that in the early days of hypnostism people were able to levitate when put into a trance. The article stated that these people could levitate because they were not yet familiar with the now well taught Newtons laws of gravity. Though, these instances were in all probability made up or fake.

      However, I'd like to think we are only limited by our own inhibitions and preconceived ideas.

      What do you all think?

      Number of Lucid Dreams: 14
      Last Lucid Dream: November 14, 2004

    2. #2
      Member dreamscape's Avatar
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      Well it depends what the use of the hypnotism is. I've heard that hypnotism is used to quit people from smoking and things like making people forget their fears. IT's not practical to use for something like hypnotising the president or something to make him do whatever you want him to do, then again.

    3. #3
      Member Kaniaz's Avatar
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      I read in the book "The Demon Headmaster" (heh, it was ages ago). At the end it said something like:

      "Don't be alarmed by this book. In real life; you can only be hypnotised if you are willing, and will not do things if you do not want to."

    4. #4
      Member clarkkent's Avatar
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      Can anyone relate any experiences on hypnosis done within a lucid dream (or even a normal dream)?

      Either self-hypnosis or a DC hypnotises you? Is that safe?
      <img src=http://img224.imageshack.us/img224/4842/chloeviewskn9.jpg border=0 alt= />

    5. #5
      Member Peregrinus's Avatar
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      Originally posted by Kaniaz
      I read in the book \"The Demon Headmaster\" (heh, it was ages ago). At the end it said something like:

      \"Don't be alarmed by this book. In real life; you can only be hypnotised if you are willing, and will not do things if you do not want to.\"
      I'm not sure that makes much difference. Most people will do most things given the right reasons and motivation. For instance, someone who claims that they wouldn't kill another human being, even if hypnotized, might very well take the life of another person if they were made to believe that their "target" would murder their family if they didn't take action. I'm not very knowledgeable about hypnosis itself, so I don't know how strong hypnotic suggestion can be (i.e. if the subject would believe the suggestion enough to take action against the supposed murderer or if enough doubt would remain to temper such action); however, people are generally capable of a far greater variety and intensity of action than they usually give themselves credit for. For that reason, I've always been somewhat doubtful that claim that "you won't do anything while hypnotised that you wouldn't do if awake" offers any real limitation to the applications of hypnosis.
      “Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.”
      - Voltaire (1694 - 1778)

      The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would suffice to solve most of the world's problems.
      - Mohandas Gandhi

    6. #6
      Member Kaniaz's Avatar
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      Well, I did read it off the back of an children's book, so I'm not exactly standing behind its authenticity.

    7. #7
      Rotaredom Howie's Avatar
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      Lets actually define practical.
      Relating to, governed by, or acquired through practice or action, rather than theory, speculation, or ideals. Manifested in or involving practice.
      Actually engaged in a specified occupation or a certain kind of work; practicing.

      If you want to talk pratical, lucid dreaming itself is a form of self hypnosis!
      And people are hynotized to quite smoking or other bad habits.

    8. #8
      Dreamah in ReHaB AirRick101's Avatar
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      We're all hypnotized to some degree. To not be is to be enlightened.

      To be hypnotized is to be in a very suggestible state, no more. We're usually hypnotized by what attracts us, because it's then that we let our guard down.
      naturals are what we call people who did all the right things accidentally

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