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One definition of hypnosis was offered by Dr. Martin Orne as follows:

Hypnosis is a psychological state or condition, induced by a ritualistic procedure, in which the subject experiences changes in perception, thinking, memory and behavior in response to suggestions by the hypnotist. 

As a young man I became interested in hypnosis, learning about it to the extent of becoming somewhat capable of inducing hypnotic states in willing friends. At some point I began to feel a little bit uncomfortable with this newfound power as I recognized that I could influence someone else’s mind and I didn’t really know what the consequences might be. This unknown territory didn’t feel ethical, and was possibly a bit dangerous, so I abandoned any further experimentation.


Recently Kathy and I went to see a “stage hypnotist” who was appearing at a local high school. I had seen such entertainment years earlier and this performance was quite similar as the hypnotist skillfully selected about 15 teens from the numerous students who volunteered. He proceeded to amaze and entertain the audience by introducing to the induced students new ideas about their reality, and they responded accordingly. For example: they experienced hot or cold when instructed; as instructed they couldn’t recall the number 4 in any form - it was blocked or absent from their minds; or an arm would move involuntarily following a visual cue; and many more tricks.


I was dumbstruck! It suddenly became so clear to me that stage hypnosis involves the voluntary relinquishment of one’s sense of autonomy and authority to another individual! In fact, the students gave the power to another to define their own sense reality, at least temporarily.

It suddenly seemed obvious how infants and children become conditioned to a consensus reality founded upon their need to cede power to the authority figures in their lives. Beginning  with the primary caregivers upon whom their comfort and survival depend, and continuing with other more powerful figures including family, teachers, etc., not only are suggestions about reality delivered once or twice, rather the messages are delivered daily for many years. Thus, their reality (our reality) is created and believed into existence by this form of conditioning.


The following quotes by spiritual teachers reflect this understanding.




Many of you have seen people hypnotized.
And in the hypnosis they seem to be seeing certain things 
the hypnotist tells them, yet these things do not exist.
So it is with this world and your appearance in it.
You appear to be here because you're hypnotized.
You have certain thoughts, certain feelings, certain emotions, 
because you're hypnotized.
You feel you want to become self-realized, liberated, 
because you're hypnotized.
Everything you feel, do or act, is hypnosis.
You are not the one that's acting, or doing, or being.
You are beyond all this

~ Robert Adams


During the first seven years, every society tries to condition the mind – and conditioning means nothing but hypnosis: forcing authority, law, tradition, religion, scripture, the priest, the church, into the innermost unconscious of the child so that from there you can control him.

~ Osho


It must be realized that the entire human scene is mesmeric suggestion, and we must rise above the desire for even good human conditions. Understand fully that suggestion, belief, or hypnotism is the substance, or fabric, of the whole mortal universe and that human conditions of both good and evil are dream pictures having no reality or permanence.

~ Joel S. Goldsmith


If we are to deal with the root cause of the crises now confronting us we must awaken from our trance and regain a fuller contact with our own inner wisdom. We need the cultural equivalent of dehypnosis. But while waking from ordinary hypnosis is a simple matter -- the hypnotist may count to three, click his fingers, and simply tell you to wake up -- awakening from our cultural trance is not nearly so simple.

For a start, there is no hypnotist standing by our side to awaken us. Most of our conditioning occurred long ago -- much of it before we could speak or remember. And it has come through many different sources: parents, teachers, friends, strangers, books, magazines, radio, television, films, advertising. It is part of the fabric of our society. No single person was responsible.

Another very important difference between clinical and cultural hypnosis concerns the depth of the conditioning. In his book, Waking Up, the psychologist Charles Tart shows that ordinary hypnosis is a voluntary and limited relationship between consenting adults. The power given to the hypnotist is limited by time -- usually to an hour or two -- and by various ethical constraints -- the subject does not expect to be bullied, threatened, or harmed. If the hypnosis does not work very well, the subject is not blamed. And, although profound changes may occur for a short while, no basic or long-term shifts in personality or “reality” are expected of the subject -- other than, perhaps, the relinquishing of some unwanted habit.

With our cultural conditioning the situation is the opposite.

Our consensus trance is not voluntary; it begins at birth without our conscious agreement.

All authority is surrendered to the parents, family members and other caretakers, who initially are regarded as omniscient and omnipotent.

Induction is not limited to short sessions; it involves years of repeated reinforcement.

Clinical therapists would consider it highly unethical to use force, but our cultural hypnotists often do -- a slap on the wrist, or severe reprimand for misbehaving. Or perhaps more subtle, but equally powerful, emotional pressures -- “I will only love you if you think and behave as I tell you.”

Finally, and most significantly, the conditioning is intended to be permanent. It may come from the very best of intentions, but it is, nevertheless, meant to have a lasting effect on our personalities and the way we evaluate the world.

This is why awakening from our cultural trance entails far more than a simple snapping of the fingers. There is a lifetime’s worth of extremely powerful induction to be overcome.

We would seem to be firmly stuck with our conditioning. Indeed, for most of the time we are. Yet there are occasions when we do wake up, and see things in a different light. In those moments we are given a glimpse of what is possible."

~ Peter Russell


What is liberation? It is to be free of personal identity. It is to be free from the hypnosis of conditioning; to be free from the magnetic influence and compulsiveness of the psychological mind. It is to recognize that you are not an object, that this body is an inadequate representation of Being, and is only a vessel through which consciousness and the vital force act in their portrayal called ‘life”.

~ Mooji


We have been hypnotized—literally hypnotized—by social convention into feeling and sensing that we exist only inside of our skins… That we are not the original big bang, but just something out on the end of it. And therefore, everybody feels unhappy and miserable.

~ Alan Watts


All awakening is a sort of de-hypnotization, so the process of hypnosis has to be understood very, very clearly.

~ Osho


In order to awaken, first of all one must realize that one is in a state of sleep. And in order to realize that one is indeed in a state of sleep, one must recognize and fully understand the nature of the forces which operate to keep one in the state of sleep, or hypnosis. It is absurd to think that this can be done by seeking information from the very source which induces the hypnosis.

~ G.I. Gurdjieff


All error is hypnotism claiming to operate as your own thinking. As soon as you realize the error is not your thinking or that of your patient, you separate yourself from the suggestion and you become free. The act of recognizing the error–regardless of its form–as universal hypnotism or mesmeric suggestion claiming to act as your own thought or thinking, is the release. Only while the error is unrecognized as suggestion or imposed hypnosis, do you remain in the sin, disease or lack. Every claim of the body governing or controlling you, every belief of limitation, every appearance of sin or disease, or death, is but hypnotism claiming to act as your thinking. The realization of this truth is your remedy.

~ Joel S Goldsmith 


Every religion tells you to get rid of your ego,
but the “one” to whom the religions tell to get rid of the ego—is the ego!
The ego is told to get rid of the ego!
But the ego is not going to commit suicide.
Therefore the question really is, Who created the ego?
You didn’t create the ego.
Where could the ego have come from?
Where could it have come from except from the Source!
Whether you call that Source, Consciousness or Primal Energy or
God or Awareness makes no difference, so long as you understand that It is the Source—One without a second.

So the ego has also come from the Source.
That is why I call the ego Divine hypnosis.
The hypnosis is—“I” consider myself a separate being with a sense of doership.
Has the Source created the hypnosis of separation,
because without separation interhuman relationships won’t happen.
It is only because of this separation that
we have friendship and enmity, love and hate.
All that arises only because each individual
considers himself or herself a separate being.
And without interhuman relationships life as we know it
would not happen.

~ Ramesh Balsekar


I used to sleep on the floor next to the bed, because I believed that I didn't even deserve a bed to sleep in. And then, one morning, a cockroach crawled onto my leg. I looked at it, and suddenly I awoke from a kind of hypnotic trance in which I had been all my life. 

~ Byron Katie


Thought can be so seductive and hypnotic that it absorbs your attention totally,  so you become your thoughts. 

~ Eckhart Tolle

We literally hypnotize ourselves with our beliefs. 

We consciously accept them, focus on them, 

and never question their truth because the results look so real. 

That’s the nature of beliefs – to hide within the truth.

The interesting thing about our beliefs is 

they need to validate themselves.

The way they validate themselves is to present 

all sorts of “proof” that they are real. 

They will stop at nothing to create the illusion of truth and fact.

Yet, our beliefs are not there to help or hinder us. 

They are just following our orders. 

The end result is that what we believe we will have, 

and what we believe we will become.

~ Dr. Robert Anthony


Man has hypnotized himself into thinking that he is a human being, whereas in reality he is one with God.

~ Paramahansa Yogananda


A spiritual teacher or friend is the one who de-hypnotizes you, who reminds you that you’re not a chicken, bringing you out of that state of hypnotic identification with trance-inducing thoughts and emotions.

Waking up is not about adding anything onto Consciousness; it's about subtracting a false belief and identification that created wacky behavior on the stage of this variety show called “Life.”

So the next time you find yourself hypnotized by your thoughts or emotions and clucking like a chicken, try de-hypnotizing yourself either by watching your thoughts dispassionately or by placing your attention on the gaps between them. 

~ Michael Rodriquez


Awake awareness might seem like a new experience; however, it's not an altered state, a transcendent state, or even a meditative state. It's our innate, true nature that is always here. When we have shifted into awake awareness, we realize that ego-identification is actually the altered state. By recognizing awake awareness, we are dehypnotizing ourselves from the trance of ego-identification." 

~ Loch Kelly 


All that apparently manifests — the world, the life story, the hypnotic dream of separation, the search for home, is the one appearing as two, the nothing appearing as everything, the Absolute appearing as the particular.

~ Tony Parsons


Don't be so quick to believe in the mind's projections. You are not the mind. Don't come under its spell. The mind is a great magician. It has hypnotized 7 billion human beings. In the realm of personhood, it is full of tricks and has the power to make a lot of mischief, confusion, distortion and delusion. But yours is a greater power. It is the power of the pure Self. The power to observe with detachment, to recognize that all phenomena are transient appearances and that oneself is the formless witness, timeless and ever-perfect.

~ Mooji


To awaken means to awaken out of the self-talk in the head because the self-talk is a form of hypnosis — self hypnosis.

~ Eckhart Tolle


The clock of time ticks away, but the opportunity to discover the timeless is being revealed to all seekers of truth according to their capacity to hear truth deeply. In each one there must arise the urge to be free from the influence of the psychological mind—to be free from the hypnosis of personal conditioning. 

~ Mooji


What we typically call “me” is not ultimately who you really are, but your personality brand; a particular collage of past impressions, conclusions, beliefs, emotional habits, likes and dislikes, held together by the glue of attachment. Like a childhood comfort blanket, it has our familiar smell and feel to it, and so we often do not stop to question whether our personality is real. All too often, we are hypnotized by our own propaganda, forgetting that we are really spiritual kings and queens, blessed with all kinds of inner riches.

~ Miranda Macpherson


The fact that we as separate individual entities, expect to transform ourselves into perfect ‘enlightened’ personages shows the extent to which we have been conditioned by Maya, the power of Divine hypnosis which has created the ‘me’s. We are only phenomena, dreamed characters playing out their respective roles. How can an appearance perfect itself? How can a psychosomatic apparatus, a conditioned body-mind organism perfect itself? Only awakening can make the dreamed character disappear; only dis-identification with the sense of personal doership in a supposed entity can bring about re-cognition of our true identity. 

~ Ramesh Balsekar


What gets in our way is history and culture and religion and economic conditions. It is part of the hypnosis of our social conditioning. 

~ Deepak Chopra


If you stood no chance to awaken to the Truth, then why did Krishna bother talking to you about awakening to the Self? Why did Christ and all the holy prophets talk to you and give up their lives for you? They are speaking from, as and to the eternal being we all are. They intend to awaken unchanging self-recognition in you, for the eternal existence has temporarily come under a state of hypnosis, whereby it believes it is merely person and so it lives as a person, suffers as a person and dies as a person, while all along, ever-present within us, the supreme Being is alive -Imperishable. Use your life to find the Ultimate One. Find It as soon as you can and awaken to the timeless and limitless Truth.

~ Mooji


It must be realized that the entire human scene is mesmeric suggestion, and we must rise above the desire for even good human conditions. Understand fully that suggestion, belief, or hypnotism is the substance, or fabric, of the whole mortal universe and that human conditions of both good and evil are dream pictures having no reality or permanence.

~ Joel S. Goldsmith


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