This page is devoted to people that I have talked to and felt that Hypnosis was evil or otherwise wrong. I felt it was worth putting on my website. All of the instances were based on ignorance about what Hypnosis is about. In all cases the people below were given suggestions in the past by someone or several people who were misinformed about Hypnosis. The people then accepted the negative suggestions about Hypnosis and as a result believe it to be true. The worse part is they are passing the bad suggestions to others. So in fact they are hypnotizing people to believe Hypnosis is bad. (You don't need to be in Hypnosis to accept a suggestion)

Born Again
In a recent phone conversation about Fibromyalgia, I found myself talking to a woman who apparently was a Born Again Christian. I made contact with a local doctors group who was preparing to have a seminar on Fibromyalgia. My interest was to ask if they were planning to talk about the very high level of effectiveness of Hypnotherapy in the treatment. After about one minute of conversation the woman blurted out "Im a Born Again Christian and Hypnosis is not something were interested in." For a short moment I was stunned by this remark that came out of the blue. I then replied I respect you beliefs, and if you don't wish to use Hypnosis for yourself, that certainly is your choice. Keeping in mind I never discuss politics or religion with anyone. I have found that is the quickest way to start a argument. I then asked if I could talk directly to one of the doctors that was doing the presentation. Well you know where that went, she denied me access to talking to them. I then asked her if she intended to deny people access to information that could make significant changes in there lives based on her religious convictions? To which the reply was again "Im a Born Again Christian and Hypnosis is not something were interested in." I then asked if I could send some information in the mail for the doctors to review. She then proceeded to give me the address. I would suspect that if she answered the phone she also gets the mail. I would think that my letter is now unopened in some trash basket with the junk mail. Apparently this woman felt she was doing the right thing by protecting others from evil.

I want to point out some things here. First her misconception that when a person is Hypnotized that they give up all will. This is so far from the truth it actually hurts. A person can never be made to do anything when in Hypnosis that they would not do out of Hypnosis. In Hypnosis and particularly Hypnotherapy you are given more will and motivation to do what you want. I think the basis of her belief comes from some passage in the bible. I don't want to say anything bad about the bible, but I think we should be open minded enough to consider our knowledge of the human brain when that bible passage was written. And or even if knowledge of Hypnosis was even around back then. The sad fact about this is this person believes she is doing good, when in fact she may be causing more unnecessary suffering, and further removing people from discovering ways that they can help themselves.

The Story below was provided by a good friend of mine and NGH colleague Chaplain Paul Durbin. I had contacted Paul Via email shortly after I placed this page on the website. I had the opportunity to finally meet Paul at the NGH convention in August 2003. I felt his story was worthy of this page and from the prospective of a chaplain.

Paul's email reply:
Just finished reading your article and it is sad how many people miss some of God's blessings because they are so narrow in their view. Which is more spiritual: the use of one's God given mind to assist in the healing process or a drug put into one's body by injections or by mouth. Of course, I take medicine when needed and I use hypnosis in place of medicine sometimes and sometimes to assist the medicine so I would not reject either.  If you want to put my story on "Born Again" which you referred to in tidbits, please do so and any other info on hypnosis and religion that I have written. Paul


    As born again Christian, I share with you the following story: Hypnosis is mistakenly viewed as mind control and demonic by many misinformed people. The hypnotic state is as natural state as that time frame just before you go to sleep when you are aware of what is going on, but feel so relaxed and comfortable: brain wave activity is exactly the same.  

Recently,  I received a physician consult to work with a woman for pain management.  As I explained the process of relaxation, imagery, and hypnosis, I could see that she was very responsive.  She said, "I am really looking forward to the experience, but I need to tell you that my daughter is a self-proclaimed born again Christian and she may say something negative to you about this.  If so, do not pay any attention to her, for I am the one who is hurting and I want to do this." As I completed the induction, the phone rang.  I told the patient, "Just allow the ringing of the phone and my answering it to add to your relaxation."  I answered the phone, "This is Mrs. Doe's room.  As she is in therapy, please call back in 30 minutes," and hung up the phone. When the procedure was completed, I walked out of the room and there was her daughter standing in front of the door with arms folded over her chest. 

She said, "What have you been doing to my mother?"  I explained that I had thought her relaxation and self hypnosis and pain reduction. She responded, "I am not sure about this hypnosis! I am a born again Christian!"  Before she could continue, I raised my hands and said, "Praise the Lord, so am I."  She was speechless, so I continued, "I will bring you some information on hypnosis, but regardless of how you feel about hypnosis, your mother has found it very helpful in the reduction of pain, so don't say anything negative to her about this." Religious Organizations Position on Hypnosis: Hypnosis is neither anti religious nor pro religious.  It can be used for good or bad depending on the hypnotist and the subject. 

Today most religious groups accept the proper use of hypnosis.  Exceptions among Christian groups are Christian Science, Seventh Day Adventist, Jehovah's Witnesses and some individuals of various churches. In recent years, the Seventh Day Adventist have lessened their resistance by using relaxation and
suggestion therapy.  Though many in various churches opposed to hypnosis use the principles of hypnosis (including Christian Science and seventy Adventists) in their healing service, they denounce hypnosis. Jehovah's Witnesses have had relaxation article in their publication for the reduction of stress.) The Roman Catholic Church has issued statements approving the use of hypnosis. 

In 1847, a decree from the Sacred Congregation of the Holy office states, "Having removed all misconception, foretelling of the future, explicit or implicit invocation of the devil, the use of animal magnetism (Hypnosis) is indeed merely an act of making use of physical media that are otherwise licit and hence it is not morally forbidden provided it does not tend toward an illicit end or toward anything depraved."

The late Pope Pius gave his approval of hypnosis.  He stated that the use of hypnosis by health care professionals for diagnosis and treatment is permitted.  In 1956, in an address from the Vatican on hypnosis in child birth the Pope gives these guidelines:  (1) Hypnotism is a serious matter, and not something to be dabbled in.  (2) In its scientific use the precautions dictated by both science and morality are to be need.  (3) Under the aspect of anesthesia, it is governed by the same principles as other forms of anesthesia.  This is saying that the rules of good medicine apply to the use of hypnosis.

Except for exceptions noted, no other Protestant Churches have any laws against the use of hypnotherapy.  To the best of my knowledge, there has been no opposition to the use of hypnosis in the Jewish Faith when it is used for the benefit of mankind. Many of the Far Eastern Faiths:  Buddhism, Yoga, Shintoism, and others approve the use of hypnosis and they often use hypnosis techniques in their worship.  The Christian Church also uses many hypnotic techniques in their worship. The use of eye fixation on the candles, cross, and pulpit; the bowing of the head in prayer; and the closing of eyes in prayer.

The Moslem religion has no opposition to hypnosis that I have been able to discover. For those who oppose hypnosis on religious ground, I remind them of the words of Jon Baptist Van Helmont, "Hypnosis is a universal agent...and is a paradox only to those who are disposed to ridicule everything, who ascribe to the influence of Satan all phemanema which they cannot explain." Some say that hypnosis places the soul in a passively receptive state and opens the door to morbid spiritual influences. 

If this is correct, then prayer, meditation, the process of going to sleep, and chemical anesthesia place the individual in a similar state to hypnosis.  Jesus indicated by his teachings that we should help peoples live life to its fullest and relieve pain whenever possible. Hypnosis should not be condemned as anti religious just because a few people misuse it. Some oppose hypnosis because it is used by the occult, but do we condemn prayer because prayer is used by the occult? Hypnosis is a very helpful tool of counseling. Without apology and when appropriate, hypnosis should be used for growth, health, overcoming unwanted habits and the benefit of people.

Don't look in his eyes

At the Woman's Expo in Hartford I had a booth. The Woman's Expo was a two day event that over 6100 people attended. There were several vendors there and they covered everything from how to cook, to some very holistic companies. In the same isle from me about 50 feet away was Psychic readings. I was amazed at to the long line there all day. I had hundreds of people coming to me asking me questions about what Hypnosis was like, and what therapies I offered. I also had several women who when they saw me they placed their hand between me and their eyes and even walked faster to get away from my gaze. I asked them what was the problem and as I did they walked even more quickly. I looked at my watch and saw that it was daytime, and I also checked my neck for bite marks. I came to the conclusion that I was not a vampire. I did not look to check, but perhaps some of them stopped at the psychic readers for a reading.

Again here is a good example of how some people are very ignorant of what Hypnotherapy is. Apparently they felt that I could cast some spell on them with a mystical gaze. Perhaps I should check with Stephen King on how to do that.

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