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A Little History of Hypnosis by Cheryl J. Savage

Hypnosis isn’t anything new. The first known written record of the use of hypnosis is found in the Old Testament Book of Genesis 2:21- 22, “so the Lord God caused a Deep Sleep to fall upon man, and while he slept, took one of the ribs and closed up its place of flesh…” God used hypnosis so that Adam felt no pain
 during the removal of his rib. The Bible speaks of hypnosis more than a 1000 times, several times in Acts: Peter fell into a trance & from that experience came to see that God loves all people who come to him Acts10: 1- 48. Now, it doesn’t use the word hypnosis but those who understand it, recognize and use hypnosis realize God and many others in Biblical times used hypnosis. We are still in Biblical times. And the word Hypnosis wasn’t coined until 1847 by a Scottish Physician, Dr James Braid, a Greek word meaning “sleep” but realizing later it was not sleep, Braid tried to introduce a new word for it: mono-ideism but it never caught on. People loved the term hypnosis too much. Stone Carvings of sleep temples have been found dating back as far as 1000 B.C. and in these temples, high priests put worshippers to what appeared to be “asleep” and the worshippers were given suggestions and while they were asleep, some god or entity would come to them and they would be healed and they usually were. Sleep temples were very popular with the Greeks & Romans from 400 to 100 B.C. Old Books, Old References refer to it as mind control. It was once thought that it was some kind of mind control but newer scientific evidence proves the person is in complete control all the time and actually more aware. The senses become keener and you become MORE alert. You will never do anything against your will, beliefs, desires or morals. That is a fact regardless of what some think. Is it powerful? Extremely powerful. It’s also extremely easy which makes most people think they can’t do it. Too easy. They think it has to be more difficult than it is. Hypnotic techniques have continued to be used throughout the centuries. One of the most famous practitioners of hypnosis was an Austrian physician, Dr Franz Anton Mesmer in the late 1700’s. Modern hypnosis was once believed to have begun with him. Many went to him to be “mesmerized”. They were usually healed. Mesmer was a true master of suggestion. The first physician to study Mesmer’s work seriously was Dr. James Braid who introduced the word “hypnosis” In the mid 1800’s, Braid & 2 other Physician’s, Dr James Esdaile and Dr. John Elliotson, used hypnosis in their practice in England & performed surgeries using only hypnosis as an anesthesia and with suggestions of healing. The mortality rate for major surgery at that time was about 50%. But in 800 some operations, using hypnotic techniques & suggestions, the mortality dropped to 5 % with none of the fatalities being an immediate outcome of surgery. Dr. Braid considered hypnosis’ a natural God-given method of healing. At that time, in 1847 The Roman Catholic Church issued a decree supporting proper use of hypnosis. In 1956, The late Pope Pius stated the approval of the proper use of hypnosis and has since been accepted by nearly every religion in the world except by some Christian Scientists and those individuals in various churches that don’t know enough about hypnosis other than what relate it to the old late night black & white horror movies, being forced to do things against their will. During WWII and the Korean War, hypnosis was used in the treatment of battle fatigue and for pain control. Many declare they wouldn’t have made it if it wasn’t for the hypnosis. Now, hypnosis is widely accepted and growing rapidly in popularity in the 21 st century, now used by most health care organizations, including doctors, hospitals, psychiatrists, psychologists, law enforcement, clergy, and many more.

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