AN INDONESIAN housewife, Herlinawati, 53, was close to becoming a victim of hypnosis in Sukmajaya, a sub-district in Depok, West Java, Indonesia last Thursday.
Three men, who claimed to be from Brunei Darussalam, allegedly approached the woman and tried to hypnotise her by patting her back, Indonesian newspapers reported.
In describing the incident, Herlinawati said she was approached by the perpetrators as she was on her way home.
In the blink of an eye, her back was tapped and in a state of subconsciousness she followed the men into a car.
“Inside the car, the perpetrators said they were from Brunei and wanted to exchange some foreign currencies into Indonesian Rupiah.
“They also claimed that they could double whatever money she owns,” Sukmajaya Police Chief Bronet Kompol said.
Duped by the perpetrators, Herlinawati unknowingly surrendered two gold rings and a watch she was wearing.
“Upon doing so, the perpetrators promised that her belongings would be returned if she gave them the rest of her jewelleries kept at home. The victim was then driven to her house,” Bronet said.
Fortunately the plan failed when the hypnotic trance on Herlinawati disappeared as soon as one of her children patted her back.
“She awoke and screamed. The three men tried to escape. Members of the Public Unit of Indonesian National Police in the area arrested and brought them to a security post,” the police chief added.
Master Mind Advanced Hypnosis Institute is offering an open house and a workshop to celebrate the 15th Annual World Hypnotism Day. The public is invited to attend the event, which will be held Friday January 4 and 11, 2019. The open house is from 2:00 p.m. to 3:00p.m. Please feel free to visit us at 300 International Drive Suite 100 Williamsville, New York 14221 . Hypnosis is a fantastic way to generate healing and accelerate growth. The advent of a new year offers my fellow Buffalonians the perfect time to explore new techniques to achieve Relaxation, weight loss, peace of mind, prosperity, health and joy.
For more Information visit www.Master-Mind.us or call (716) 247-6610
Hypnosis, demystified: More than just a party trick, hypnosis in a therapeutic setting can alleviate anxiety, phobias, PTSD, and more.
People come to hypnosis for a grab-bag of reasons. Smoking cessation. Emotional eating. Fear of flying. Achieving “flow” or peak performance as an artist or athlete. For Ann of West Hurley (who prefers to go by her first name), it was stage fright that led her to the hypnotist’s chair last summer. She was preparing to have an adult Bat Mitzvah, something she hadn’t done as a child and really wanted to do, yet performance anxiety was getting in the way. “I wasn’t sleeping well, and it was overwhelming to the point where I was avoiding the work I had to do,” she says. “Time management went out the window, and fear took over.”
About six weeks before Ann’s big day at the synagogue, a friend, a “very wise woman,” suggested that she try hypnosis to allay her anxiety. “It never would have come into my own mind to do this,” Ann says. “She made the call right then and there. I didn’t have much time to think about it.”
“Somehow, in the process of talking, I started to relax,” she says. “I don’t know if I’d call it being in a trance; it was just very deep relaxation.”
Tapping into the Unconscious Mind
Hypnosis in a private, therapeutic session is nothing like the stage tricks we’ve seen on TV. You’ll never see a watch swinging from a chain, or be ordered to perform silly or outrageous acts, such as clucking like a chicken in front of a live studio audience. Trances don’t always feel like trances so much as a state of relaxed awareness. People don’t lose control and become the sleep-walking marionettes of a hypnotist-showman.
“There are so many misconceptions about hypnosis,” “The use of the trance or hypnotic state goes back to ancient practitioners—medicine people and healers and shamans from tribal cultures from around world. They were getting themselves and people in their community into an altered state, where they could contact the vast resources of what they would have called the spirit world, but that we would now call the unconscious mind. They used it for healing.”
Hypnosis success stories are mainly anecdotal, yet we’re beginning to understand what’s happening in the brain when people enter a hypnotic state. In 2016, researchers at Stanford University published a study that found changes in certain areas of the brain in subjects undergoing guided hypnosis sessions similar to those used by practitioners to treat anxiety, pain, or trauma. Some describe the process as going from beta (active and alert) to more alpha and theta (relaxed and dreamlike) brainwaves. The Stanford researchers also noted that some people are more susceptible to hypnosis than others, possibly standing to absorb more benefits from it.
No two people are alike, and not all hypnosis is alike either. “I gather information from people to understand what they need, because I don’t use a boilerplate approach,” says Blum. He uses a client-centered method known as Ericksonian hypnosis, which is more permissive than the old-school “authoritarian” style. So rather than giving commands such as “You are feeling sleepy” or “Your eyes are getting heavier,” he makes suggestions. “I might say, ‘I wonder if you can imagine yourself now as a nonsmoker in the future.’ It’s about giving the person a chance to make choices.” Blum notes that most people only need two or three sessions to effect change. “This is short-term, solution-oriented work. You’re addressing what you want and how you can change to get that.”
Waking Up from Trauma
Some mental health practitioners add hypnosis to their toolbox because it can help people go deep quickly and get to the source of their core issues. Stephanie Kristal, a certified hypnotherapist and counselor based in Kingston and High Falls, combines hypnosis with mindfulness and cognitive behavioral therapy as a way to instigate change at the root level. “Hypnosis is a deep state, but there’s nothing scary about it,” she says. “It’s similar to spacing out while watching a movie or becoming absorbed in a really good book. You drop below the level of the constantly chattering mind to a place in the subconscious that’s more open to suggestion.” Hypnotherapy takes hypnosis one step further by working with the mind-body connection and utilizing the modality of hypnosis for change, growth, and healing.
People see Kristal for a variety of reasons, including common motivators like smoking cessation, overeating, and phobias, but her primary practice is with trauma. “When we have a trauma, we take on certain beliefs about ourselves, and we have associated thoughts and feelings because of it. It forms a neural loop that we keep repeating, which keeps us locked into being unhappy and limited in our lives,” she explains. “Hypnotherapy can be a process that begins to dissolve those old neural loops that are no longer serving us and are keeping us from reaching our desired states, and replaces them with healthier ways of thinking, feeling, believing, and being in our life.” It’s a way of flipping the switch on those neural pathways, so we’re not stuck in past traumas but can move forward with empowered awareness.
When Luis Mojica of West Saugerties first came to Kristal, he was dealing with emotional fallout from complex trauma related to childhood sexual abuse. “I was having extreme anxiety, trouble sleeping, and issues in my relationship,” he says. “When Stephanie explained hypnotherapy, the idea of it really worked for me. I liked how you bypassed the brain to get to the body, and I felt like I could heal faster than I would with a decade of therapy.” Mojica had two counseling sessions with Kristal that helped her get to know him before embarking on a single yet powerful hypnotherapy experience. During the session, he lay back in a chair that made him feel like he was floating. Kristal held an eagle feather and told him to look at the feather while she counted backwards from 10. “By the time she hit ‘one,’ I was in a different state,” he says. “Her voice was like a narrative force in a waking dream.” People involved in the trauma entered the dream, but he felt safe and wasn’t triggered. He could walk through the trauma and reclaim it, calling upon his adult self to comfort the little boy that he once was.
What felt like a very vivid 10-minute dream was a two-and-a-half-hour session. “You’re in an altered state, but it’s one that you are navigating; it’s very much in your control,” he says. “When I came out, my body felt so clear and at peace. It was like I was finally awake. The trauma had me sleepwalking for so many years. I felt like I was someone I wasn’t.” After the session, his anxiety vanished and his relationship with his wife deepened. He says the trauma is still there but much more manageable; he is no longer forgetting, rediscovering, and reliving it. A holistic therapist himself, as well as a musician, Mojica now recommends Kristal to his clients for everything from trouble sleeping and recurring nightmares to unresolved heartbreak or grief.
Good Trances and Bad Trances
Hypnotherapy can be transformative for some people, but Kristal notes that it is not a magic wand—and it is not effective for everyone. “Whether it’s the modality that works for you, no one can guarantee that,” she says. “But the more that you’re open and willing to develop resources and tools to help strengthen the process, the more effective it is.” She is trained in two approaches: transpersonal hypnotherapy, which works on a psycho-emotional level to help people get unstuck and dissolve old ways of being, and medical hypnotherapy, which uses hypnosis to help people deal with fears and issues surrounding life-threatening illnesses and treatments. “It’s not something I’m doing to someone,” she explains. “I work with people to help them access their own inner wisdom for guidance. Really, the only person who can hypnotize you is yourself.”
Blum jokes that he often calls the process “de-hypnosis,” because the practice is about helping people wake up from the trances they’re already in. “There are good trances and there are bad trances,” he says. “A bad trance has a lot of limitations. Good trances are empowering trances.” He once worked with someone who had to overcome the idea that she couldn’t go to college, since no one in her family had done so, and not being able to go was an early hypnotic suggestion that had come from her parents. Suggestions like these can come from teachers, politicians, and the culture at large. “Hypnosis is kind of an adjustable wrench,” he says. “Once you have it, you can use it for a variety of applications.” Blum is also trained in sound healing, and with certain clients he might use music and sound as an adjunct to hypnosis.
Encouraged by her success with dispelling performance anxiety, Ann says she will return to Blum for hypnosis as she prepares for an upcoming surgery. She hopes it will work just as well as it did for her Bat Mitzvah. “I needed help and I was open to receiving help,” she says. “When you do something like this, I think you have to be ready. I don’t know if this works for everybody. In a million years, I couldn’t have imagined this outcome for myself.”
During the days leading up to Easter, the most sacred day in Christianity, the heavens have been presenting a stunning light show.
We are able to see five planets with the naked eye: Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn. And Saturday night – just hours before Easter sunrise services – we are being treated to a blue moon. That’s the name given to the second full moon in a month, something that happens roughly every 2.7 years
Moreover, this Easter’s blue moon is extra special, because it is the second one this year. The next time two blue moons occur in one year will be 2037.
There’s no denying the Bible commonly associates major events with anomalous astronomical and meteorological upheavals. But as a scientist and Christian, I’m always wary about giving too much importance to celestial signs and wonders. I certainly don’t believe in astrology.
That said, the astonishing celestial fireworks brightening this year’s Holy Week inspire me in three ways.
First, they remind me that if people are truly seeking evidence for God’s existence – including atheists, many of whom claim no such evidence exists – they only need to look up at the night sky. As it says in Psalm 19:1: “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.”
It is certainly possible to explain the universe without any reference to a creator; but it’s like enjoying a sumptuous meal without giving any credit to the chef. Today, in an effort to avoid mentioning a creator, scientists are having to believe in unobservable notions such as imaginary time, 11-dimensional cosmologies, and quantum reservoirs that are at once nothing and everything.
How are these any less far-out than believing historical accounts that Jesus existed and rose from the dead?
Second, this week’s eye-popping events remind me that Christianity is the most inclusive and egalitarian religion imaginable. Just as the splendors of the night sky can be enjoyed by anyone, anywhere, without any viewing aids, Christians believe God’s love is freely available to anyone, anywhere, without the need of a privileged pedigree, guru, or some exemplary amount of karma.
As explained in the book of Ephesians, “it is by grace you have been saved, through faith … not by works, so that no one can boast.”
Finally, the extraordinary celestial light show that we are in the midst of reminds me that our solar system offers a perfect metaphor for how we are to behave toward one another.
Absent the sun, absent God, we are as dark as the far side of the moon. But just as the desolate, gray lunar surface is able to reflect the light of the sun, we are made to reflect God’s love in the world.
So look up at the night sky and drink in its deep, inspiring message: This Easter, the creator of the universe is calling on all of us – Christian and non-Christian alike – to shine brightly with kindness and compassion and not just once in a blue moon, but every day we are alive.
Michael Guillen Ph.D., former Emmy-winning ABC News Science Editor, taught physics at Harvard and is now president of Spectacular Science Productions.
A single ‘sensitising event’ can cause a lifelong phobia
21% of women and 11% of men have at least one phobia
Phobics are easy targets of phobia based ‘pranks’ with clowns, blood and spiders most common
April Fool’s Day this year takes place on Easter Sunday and leading hypnotherapists highlighting the dangers of fear-based pranks to the millions that have a phobia. While most people see April Fool’s as time for fun and harmless jokes, others see it as a horrible day to be endured, as friends and family try to terrify them.
People with phobias routinely find themselves targets of pranks based on what scares them most, which can lead to debilitating panic attacks. The most common phobia pranks are killer clown masks to those with coulrophobia, fake blood to those with hemophobia and spiders to those with arachnophobia.
Phobias are most commonly formed in childhood, so a person can suffer from them for years before seeking help. During this time, they may find themselves the victims of jokes or pranks, like Lisa who was the victim of a prank due to a mild fear of spiders.
Lisa explained “I’m absolutely terrified to the point of tears. When I was about 7 my older brother collected 200 spiders in a jar and decided to put them in my bed. He thought it was funny to watch his sister be petrified. It was like the film arachnophobia. They were everywhere!”
While Lisa’s brother may have found this funny, the extent of this traumatic impacted Lisa into adulthood as the mild fear turned into a fully-fledged phobia. She continued with the phobia until she noticed her young son was also developing a fear of spiders and motivated her to get help. Within a 4-hour spider phobia workshop her phobia was completely cured.
Lisa explained what happened in the short workshop, “I could not be in a room with a spider. There was no way I thought that I could hold a spider. But I held a tarantula! I was so relaxed, I’d never been hypnotised but it was amazing!”
Phobias can lead to more anxiety and can develop into social anxieties and general anxiety disorder. A short hypnosis session can reverse the phobia very quickly. Hypnosis can undo the link between the phobic object and the learned response, meaning people can overcome their fear without difficult or intensive therapy.
Playing a prank based on someone’s fears may seem like just a bit of fun but the nature of a phobia is that they can be caused by a sensitising event. A prank which creates a highly emotive reaction can cause a lifelong phobia, since most phobics don’t realise that a phobia can be cured in just a few hours.
Hypnotherapy could help thousands of people laugh this April Fool’s day, instead of living in fear.
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