Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The Bizarre Beginnings of Hypnosis

By Clifford Mee: Source: Covert Hypnosis Exposed

Dr Franz Anton Mesmer was an Austrian physician living from 1734-1815. He is believed to be the founding father of hypnosis due to how he used magnets to heal people.

Sounds weird I know, but stay with me.

This development was the pivotal moment in the evolution of modern hypnosis because people realised - for the first time - that the operator (i.e. the hypnotist) had the responsibility to acquire a skill (i.e. learn hypnosis) in order to be able to help his patients heal.

It also laid the foundation for the idea that special trance states could be used for healing - which to this day is one of the core definitions of the hypnotic state.

Whilst many of the ideas that Dr Mesmer came up with have little bearing on our modern day
understanding of hypnosis, the practices he developed were genuinely hypnotic - albeit a little bizarre! Because of this, the terms "Mesmerism" and "Animal Magnetism" are to this day still synonymous in many minds with the the practice of hypnosis.


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