Over the years I have come across certain views on hypnotherapy which are really nonsense. Unfortunately some of these misconceptions are so popular and engrained in the collective mind, that they can cause a significant amount of hesitation and doubt, even fear and avoidance, amongst people who would otherwise choose hypnosis as therapeutic method.
Whether we use the model of the subconscious mind or the model of the Koshas, both help to explain the multidimensional levels of our human existence which go beyond the physical body and rational mind. And fact is that whatever education, conditionings, beliefs and attachments an individual has, they influence his/her life, whether s/he is aware of it or not: they shape world views, attitudes, behaviour, thought patterns and choices. And also attract or repel certain experiences and relationships. Integral Hypnotherapy as I practice it, is an effective and holistic self-healing method that can help to free a person from limiting imprints, destructive influences and facilitate his/her self-empowerment and self-realisation.
Let‘s shed some light on the top 5 common limiting believes that people carry about Hypnotherapy.
MYTH 1: The hypnotised client is out of control.
TRUTH: The client can leave the hypnotic state whenever s/he wants and can also decide what information s/he discloses to the therapist. A session is a spoken dialogue. The therapist has no control over the client’s thoughts or speech, nor does the client loose control over what s/he says. The experience belongs to the client and springs forth from his/her own accumulated data, imprints and memories of which s/he is not necessarily aware of in day to day life (as they are stored in subconscious mind, cellular memory etc.). The therapist gives gentle verbal stimuli that respond to the client’s state and is always guided by what the client observes in the present moment during the session. While there are certain patterns that can be observed amongst clients, each case is different and unique, so the dynamics of a session must be uncovered individually and anew each time – free of presumptions. The client is not told how to resolve his/her problem. On the contrary, the client discovers within his/her own soul space (under higher self guidance) how to deal with an issue and what the next best steps are. Further below, I describe in more detail how the therapists holds a sacred space.
MYTH 2: A hypnotherapist is a weird nerd or mysterious magician.
TRUTH: There is a difference between TV or stage hypnotists and Hypnotherapists. Hypnotherapy has nothing to do with magic or hidden tricks. In fact, a hypnotherapist is a professional who went through profound trainings, a range of certification courses, practice sessions and exams. Nothing enigmatic about that! And after this formation, a hypnotherapist becomes a guide and facilitator for a client, as it is through the therapist‘s guidance, that the hypnotic state can be reached and then used for the client‘s balancing and progress.
By the way, there are quite a lot of hypnotherapists who have a rather down to Earth, corporate background or pinstripe suit career before they shifted to their healing practice. For example, Dr. Yogesh Choudhary (Director of the Indian Institute of Hypnotherapy in New Delhi/India, therapist and teacher of Clinical Hypnosis) was an airforce engineer in the Indian army, a therapist friend of mine was a lawyer in an international firm and I worked as Brand Consultant in an international agency network.
MYTH 3: The hypnotherapist does something to the client‘s mind
TRUTH: Integral Spiritual Hypnosis that I practice, employs the protocol of Clinical Hypnosis to access finer realms of consciousness in order to see the root cause of a conflict or issue. In other words, the method of Clinical Hypnosis can be used to facilitate transformation and healing on subconscious level where we find the storage space of ALL our memories, habits, emotional programs, conditionings and behavioural patterns. Hypnosis is a bridge to reach an altered state of consciousness. In such a state the subconscious mind is very receptive to positive constructive suggestion. But at the same time – and this is the major part of Integral Hypnotherapy – information from the subconscious can be accessed, which helps to understand and clear an issue at its origin. The background and connections of a problem can be seen by the client him/herself as data from the subconscious reveals itself and unfolds in front of his/her inner eye. When the client is connected to his/her supraconsciousness (= Higher Self), s/he is receiving inspiration and bigger picture visions. Nothing that the therapist could do to the client’s mind!
Hypnotic states are associated with increased theta and alpha wave activities but also delta waves. The ultra-deep level of hypnosis is called Esdaile. This state does not get achieved so easily though, usually only when the client has established a regular mediation practice. There are actually many analogies between hypnosis and deep meditation (self-regulation, presence, brain lobes activation etc). The individual that consciously accesses this depth of trance can experience feelings of intense joy, peace, empathy and gratitude, as well as a universal / divine connection and paranormal / mystical phenomena. This explains why the hypnotic state can also help to understand more about our spiritual existence: the client’s opening towards their own soul and spirit.
MYTH 4: Past Life Regression is the best healing protocol
TRUTH: Past Life Regression is only one of many tools in Hypnotherapy. However many clients and therapists are quite hung up on it. Look at this. There are various energies that can have an restrictive and distortive impact on an individual, for example ancestral imprints, family entanglements, karmic baggage, auric attachments like discarnates, cords, contracts and implants, own fragmented soul parts after traumata in formative years, vows, social and Earth field imprints. These are energetic challenges that can be resolved and transmuted. However, which tool from the Hypnotherapy toolbox should be used depends neither alone on the client‘s rational mind decision – „I‘d like an appointment for a past life regression, please.“ – nor on the therapist‘s diagnosis („I see, you need a past life regression.“). In my experience, it is eventually up to the client‘s higher self and the benevolent universal forces to lead the most effective clearing process. With universal powers I mean the divine principles of cooperation, forgiveness, creativity and unconditional love. After all, love is the most powerful force in the universe. A holistic, effective approach to this work includes respect for everything that might show up in a session. So may a client assume that the reason for a persistent problem must be in a past life hence a past life regression is needed, it is up to the therapist to remain open and hold the space in which truth can emerge and reveal which Hypnotherapy tool is required.
MYTH 5: It‘s just a mind game between client and therapist
TRUTH: Client and therapist are actually only players in a field. And the field goes far beyond the individual minds. In fact, there are several invisible forces present during a healing session. What does this mean? Integrated Hypnotherapy is conducted outside of linear time, in a space where past, present and future are dissolved (similar to Shamanism and Systemic Constellation Work). The aim is to tune into what psychiatrist Albrecht Mahr describes as the Knowing Field. Comparable to what Hindus call the Akashic Records. It is a field, where communication is instantaneous and unrestricted by time and space. This offers the possibility for us to work with the whole creation of a soul and its connections, whether relationships in this life, ties from past lives or associates in other dimensional realms. In a hypnotic trance the client taps into this Knowing Field and perceives relevant data, feelings, images or symbols (even if s/he has little or no previous, factual knowledge of such signs). This way, the client‘s perceptions and feelings inform the flow of the hypnotherapy session – revealing underlying dynamics of the stated issue and leading to reconciliation and resolution.
Apart from the Knowing Field, there are other non-visible factors in hypotherapy, for example the client‘s and therapist‘s clairsentience (accessible through higher states of consciousness) as well as the benevolent universal powers of existence (God, Source, Highest Supreme Consciousness), which create a natural pull towards harmony and completion: once a client has chosen to heal an issue and move on, the universe supports his/her decision. Existence or Highest Supreme Consciousness literally presents new perspectives, pathways, solutions and circumstances.