Hypnosis – How it Works, and Why it’s so Effective
Posted On November 9, 2017
/ Written by Dr. Linda Gadbois
The term “hypnosis” refers to a state commonly called “trance”, which is where the body is in a fully relaxed state while attention is fixated on an idea. The conscious – thinking by talking- aspect of the mind, which is normally dominant in terms of awareness and directed attention, is subdued and pacified, and the subconscious mind becomes dominant and unguarded and readily accessible to conceive of suggestion as “seeded ideas” from the will. Because the will is a natural function of the conscious mind, which is always directing the subconscious through thought and internal dialogue is inactive, the will of another serves to give intentional suggestions to the subconscious instead, which is why deep forms of hypnosis requires a hypnotist or practitioner to perform.
Yet the state of hypnosis itself is very natural to us and is the natural relationship between the conscious and subconscious minds, as well as the higher mind of the Soul. Anytime we passively engage in some idea or activity, we enter into a trance-like state, and readily take in the suggestions being given to us, where we turn them into an inner reality by continuing to think about them. An idea introduced into the mind is turned into a full-fledged reality in 14 to 17 seconds. As we begin thinking about something, we internalize and imagine it, build it into a believable reality as a possibility, and in doing so, act to program ourselves with that idea. Many people believe “programming” is something that requires an intentional act or actual process, when in fact, we’re constantly programming ourselves with the reality of our own imagined thoughts.
The biggest difference between hypnosis and meditation, which can be virtually identical, is that hypnosis has a purpose and is designed as a means to accomplish a desired goal or end result, whereas meditation takes place anytime we become present, remove our attention from distractions, and enter into a concentrative, single-minded state. Hypnosis tends to go deeper into the actual trance state because its purpose is to bypass the critical mind and work directly on and with the subconscious mind, which is the creative powerhouse of the body and material plane, and the aspect of the mind that turns an idea into a reality as the experience of it. All perception, feelings, emotions, memories, and behaviors or actions are naturally produced by the subconscious. So it’s here that all physical change takes place.
The subconscious is synonymous with the DNA of the body’s cellular structure, as they operate according to the same principle to perform a unified process and analogous functions. By reprogramming or re-engineering the subconscious mind, we simultaneously re-inform the DNA of our cellular structure, determining how it forms new sequences as relationships. In this manner, the conscious, subconscious, and DNA of the body are designed to function as a singular unit to self-create and create the reality it exists in as a mental projection. But unfortunately, most have lost touch completely with how their own mind-body system works, and their conscious mind is constantly being consumed by the will of others and the mindless distractions that bombard us as a part of our daily reality, and it’s hardly even aware of its own subconscious aspect, let alone its ability to willfully direct it through its own thoughts and intentions.
The subconscious differs from the conscious in terms of the language they speak, which has become another barrier in the communication process. The conscious mind is intellectually oriented and thinks in words and through thought as internal dialogue that are somewhat abstract in nature, whereas the subconscious, which is intuitive and experiential in nature, thinks in pictures and images. The conscious mind is hopelessly distracted and lost in time (past, future, yesterday, tomorrow), thinking in terms of memories of the past that are projected into the future, whereas the subconscious is always present in the moment, and dealing with and producing what’s actually happening. The conscious mind tends to think and occupy itself mostly others, and entertains itself with theory, while the subconscious “is” body awareness, feeling oriented, emotionally driven, and is what produces all of our natural behaviors and tendencies as our personality, affording us the ability to busy ourselves thinking and dreaming about things that aren’t real.
So when we move from dealing with the conscious to the subconscious, we use words only to direct attention and fixate the subconscious on an idea while directing it through an imaginary process, which acts much like a metaphor, analogy, or allegory. The key component of the subconscious is it operates in a natural and spontaneous manner by way of law, and recognizes the principles being conveyed in any symbolic idea, which is what allows it to use those principles to create in numerous situations of a similar nature. It’s instinctual in nature, and intuitively understands the meaning and message inherent in ideas, and the fact that it’s the attributes and characteristics of the internal nature that form objects and determine how they behave. It understands and connects to the inner nature of things (feelings and emotions), and sees physical attributes as properties that can be used to perform similar operations under numerous circumstances to produce the same result or outcome.
So whenever we’re working with the subconscious, which is what hypnosis is all about, we fix the attention of the subconscious onto an idea, and walk it through an imaginary process as the reality or actual experience of the change we want it to produce. We create it not as a theoretical set of instructions that only require a concept, but as a virtual reality as if it’s happening, or has already happened and we’re having the experience of it. Because the subconscious doesn’t have a will of its own, it requires a “memory” to use as a “blueprint” and instructions for manifesting a reality as a physical state or condition. Words are only used as a guide of what’s to be imagined in sensory terms. The experience is created as feeling sensations (what you’re seeing, hearing, touching or feeling, smelling, tasting, telling yourself, etc.) that creates an inner experience that invokes a corresponding emotion, which is the alteration of the chemistry of the body through hormones, to match or be the result of the experience. As we alter the chemistry of our body through the experience created, we re-inform it with chemical messengers, adjusting its state and how it functions, and what it manifests as a result.
The DNA of the body, which is predominately regulated and operated by the subconscious, is programmed through new information that cause it to form new sequences, which in turn regenerate and manifest in new ways. DNA is literally transformed through our perceptions, thoughts, and experiences, and operates like the subconscious out of memory. By creating new memories through virtual experiences, we give both our subconscious and DNA (cellular mind and brain) new patterns to use to produce physical reality out of. All forms of manifestation, whether actual and physical, or mental as imaginary thought processes, are formed out of memory of some form. We’re always creating the present out of memories of the past by thinking the same “type” of thoughts as replaying memories over and over. A dynamic matrix of memories form our mental paradigm (model) and the perceptual lens that we use to perceive, interpret, form our experiences, and create more realities of the same nature.
In order to change or transform what has manifest, we need to either transform an existing memory into a new version, or erase it altogether while replacing it with a new one. We have to re-inform the subconscious and DNA by giving it a new pattern and process as a blueprint for creating more of the same type of realities. This blueprint has to be in the form of an experience of reality. It has to be intuitive in nature. It can’t be given as a dry set of intellectual instructions that lack reasoning and viability. For this reason, a metaphorical process has to be vividly imagined as an actual experience that produces a feeling sensation that stimulates an emotional response. All reality as a transformation or creation comes through our ability to translate an idea into an emotion. Emotion “is” the chemical equivalent of the idea as hormonal messengers, and is what actually adjusts the “state of the body” as a unified whole to manifest the physical equivalent.
All hypnotic processes, which are simply entering into a passive state while taking in whatever suggestion is being given and imagining it as an inner reality, are designed to direct the subconscious mind to produce an imaginary experience that it takes as being real (it doesn’t know the difference between imagined and real, because they’re both produced the same way) that provides it with a new memory as a pattern and biological process for manifesting as a corresponding reality. The emotion produced by the experience is the key to manifesting and is what determines the nature of the manifestation in terms of its meaning. All behaviors and actions are emotionally driven. It’s not emotion in the generic sense of generalizations such as happy, joyous, sad, and so on, but the emotion one would feel at the accomplishment of the goal being created as the reality and experience of it, and what it “means” as a result.
Meaning is the core and common denominator between haphazard creations and intentional creations. It’s not just what manifests that’s important, but the fact that you “caused it” to manifest using your mind-body system in a strategic manner. That’s an emotion hard to describe or categorize in the conventional sense because it brings a dynamic series of realizations that open up new doors into the true power of your own will and mind to create yourself and your life in an intentional and deliberate way. The experience of actual empowerment is quite different than contemplating the idea from a dissociated and theoretical position. Once you’re able to produce results, you know it works in a factual manner, and no longer requires a belief in it.
Hypnosis, like meditation and healing, is not something that’s done “for you” or “to you”, but is something you do yourself. All the practitioner does is lead you through the process of entering into a hypnotic state by following their directives, then lead you through the suggestions you’ve decided on and given them to give you while in a receptive state. Contrary to popular (uneducated) belief, you can’t be made to do something that goes against your “values” (will) while in a hypnotic trance, no matter how deep it is. We are only ever capable of doing what’s in “our nature” to do, even when in our subconscious mind and unguarded by our conscious mind, which forms the core of our personality. The minute an idea is suggested that goes against our values, the conscious mind kicks in and engages and begins the process of discrimination and evaluation, and acts to reject the suggestion, often breaking the hypnotic state.
In a like manner, only changes and creations that we have honestly decided on can be “installed” successfully with permanent results. A decision comes as a balance between both the conscious and subconscious, between intention as an idea, and the feelings, emotions, and memories regarding it. The subconscious is the womb of the conscious, willful, decision making mind. If we’re still wavering on an idea, still harbor a desire for it somehow or an emotional connection to it, still debating and negotiating it, then the hypnotic process probably won’t be successful as a way of “making the decision for us”. The subconscious has no will of its own, and even while given a program in a receptive state, can be vetoed by the conscious will, which will override it and simply re-inject the willed decision as the pattern for the subconscious to use to create. Our own will always overrules the will of another when used with awareness.
The will provides the “seed” (masculine) that the subconscious conceives of (feminine) and grows into a physical form. So before hypnosis is used as the method for impregnating the subconscious, a firm decision has to be made and a clear intention set as to what the subconscious will be instructed to create. And again, care must be taken to produce the appropriate emotional response to how the idea is created, because the emotion is the formative element, and is what also acts to connect us with the elements of the manifest reality in everything outside of us necessary to produce it as an outer experience of reality. Feeling (sensation) and emotion (chemistry), both of which are complementary opposites of the “heart center” are what connects us to our environment and others as the unified subconscious (Collective Unconscious) we share with all of Nature. So always bear this formula in mind in everything you do. It’s the translation of an idea into a feeling and into an emotion that determines what actually manifests. Whatever manifests will be an expression of the emotion and serve to produce more of it.
The other interesting thing about working with the subconscious mind is that changes that are produced often occur without direct awareness. We often produce the change without realizing it. This sounds strange when you first think about it, but you have to keep in mind that what we call the “unconscious” is exactly that. It operates continuously in our life without any direct awareness of it. In fact, many have no real awareness of their subconscious mind in general, and don’t even know what it is for sure. Because both the subconscious and conscious mind works out of memory, the conscious mind doesn’t remember what’s been changed. It no longer accesses memory in the subtle sense of everyday awareness and present mind-set, and only remembers when looking back (being directed to look back), and even then, can feel a sense of being outside of or dissociated from the memory.
This is how the subconscious works and the true meaning of “personal transformation”, in the sense that once you learn how to operate your own mind-body system, and the fact that your higher conscious and personal conscious can act in a willful and creative manner to reprogram the subconscious mind, giving it new memories, where you can literally become a different person by reshaping your personality and identity. You can become who you choose to be instead of unconsciously ending up the way you are due to conditioning.
As children, only our subconscious is active and creative and we are readily conditioned by the will of others, and become the person as an adult of our conditioning. Yet once we become adults and our self-conscious mind is fully developed and active, we have the ability to use our will to condition ourselves to become the way we choose to be. Self-hypnosis as a form of guided meditation is always going on as the natural relationship between the conscious and subconscious mind through our own imagined thoughts and the emotional states they produce, and the emotions we react to in others. The subconscious mind acts to produce the “nature” out of which the conscious mind thinks and perceives, and then through its thoughts and perceptions as a form of “witnessing” the creation of the subconscious as an outer reality, acts to reinforce the subconscious mind through a form of feedback loop. Words produce images as the meaning of the words that we picture in our mind as a reality, and then we have an emotional response to our own thoughts. In this way we are constantly acting on ourselves to program ourselves with the reality of our thoughts.
What we call hypnosis is the most natural state we exist in, and is always a form of “self-hypnosis” whether we’re doing it to ourselves or being guided through it by another, we’re still the ones “doing it” by how we use our imagined thoughts to regulate and produce the emotional chemistry of our body. When we exist in a passive state, never exerting ourselves, or using our will to think for ourselves and make our own decisions, we become a receptacle for the will of others. We readily take in the ideas of others without discriminating or evaluating them, allow them to take hold by thinking about them, and act to manifest the reality of their will instead of our own. When we engage in passive forms of entertainment or information delivered through the media that we don’t challenge in any way, we become programmed with those ideas and participate in a cooperative manner to co-create the reality they imply. This is the most basic form of mass hypnosis that’s taking place all the time and keeps us all willingly creating a joint reality.
Once we realize and understand fully how this process works, we can take control of it and utilize it in an intentional manner to self-create. We can remain in an active state when engaging with others and media of any form and actively use discretion as to what we expose ourselves to and willingly take in and start thinking about as a way of forming it into an inner reality that becomes a part of our normal thought process and outer reality. We can learn how to direct our own thoughts and imagining producing the reality we want and choose to produce rather than engaging in the mass programming of society and others. Hypnosis simply provides us with the process for programming our subconscious using our conscious mind, and creating ourselves and our life in a deliberate manner as a result. We are not only fully responsible for whom we become, but we have the inherent tools and means for doing it. We simply have to become aware of it and learn how to use them in an intentional manner as the means of self-creating.
Linda is a scholar in Esoteric Sciences and holds a doctorate in Spiritual Sciences, and a BS in Clinical Hypnotherapy, along with numerous specialty certifications in various healing modalities. She's a certified Health and Success Coach, NLP Master Practitioner, and Board Certified in Regression Therapy. She's professional writer, artist, educator and Mentor, and offers a wide variety of Mentoring and Consulting Services, along with professional training programs. Her specialties include Personal Transformation, Self-Mastery, Spiritual Sciences, Transpersonal Psychology, and Integrative Mind-Body Medicine. For more info visit our Personal and Professional Services pages in the top menu bar of this site, or email us at: [email protected]