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edit·history·watch·refresh Stock post message.svg To-do list for Hypnosis:

Sections/info to be added:

Development of non-state and state theorists understanding with regard to the following:

  • Clinical observations of hypnosis
    • Character of breathing
    • physical observations
    • sex differences in extent or succeptibility to hypnotic induction, in terms of both hypnotist and subject
  • Therapeutic Applications
    • Overcoming addictions
  • More controversial applications
    • Psychological trauma (using memory re-call inter alia)
    • Memory-recall
    • Overcoming physical limits
    • Hypnotic age regression
    • Hypnotic dreamwork
  • Terminology - "hypnosis" versus "hypnotism"
  • Criticism
    • Refer to the "Need for criticism" section below


Unbalanced, pseudoscientific article[edit]

One could read all this pseudoscientific jargon without even suspecting that there's substantial body of evidence that "hypnosis" is nothing more than a scam started by the charlatan Mesmer. Even if one were to believe the jargon, no balanced presentation can avoid dealing with the fact that "hypnotism" is deeply infiltrated by fraud. This article should be completely rewritten, or deleted. It's a disgrace in its present form. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:00, 19 August 2012 (UTC)

I agree that the article is missing a criticism section. Since you seem to know all about the criticisms, you could add to the article. I'll try to find citations. Myrvin (talk) 09:28, 20 August 2012 (UTC)
Hypnosis was not started by Mesmer which teachings are referred to as Mesmerism, not hypnotism. It is not known if Mesmerism had any influence whatsoever on hypnotism. Most likely both where influenced by eastern meditation and developed in parallel.
The usage of the word "hypnosis" may be quite modern, but hypnotic methods have been used as far back as there are recorded history. Vitamins are also deeply infiltrated with fraud, guild by association are not a valid argument. I do not agree that there are no substantial body of evidence that hypnosis is more than a scam. In fact the article refers to a lot of evidence to the contrary, and the article are quite incomplete in this matter. The article on placebo are fare more complete than the article on the far broader hypnosis subject. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:17, 22 March 2013 (UTC)
No, no, I have to agree with the OP. Hypnosis, in Derren Brown's beautifully succinct words, "is a form of play-acting". It doesn't work as an externally applied influence, and never really did. As a non-external influence, ie. an agreed participation, it requires the complete cooperation of the subject. In this case, some benefits and other effects have been noted. Although anecdotal, I cite here as an example a Mythbusters episode where they explored it - anecdotal yes, but they hit most of the findings already established by the psychology community: no you can't make somebody bark like a dog, not unless you have established a giant context already by elaborate staging (as, indeed, Mesmer did). Reactions where the subject could clearly remember the association they had been 'programmed with' were the most interesting - they burst out laughing, acknowledging that yes there was a strong recall of the association, but it had no imperative power whatsoever. Also - its not an ancient practice. Don't confuse it with Trance. Hypnotism did, indeed, become more popular after Mesmer (his quackery in particular concerned the newly rediscovered Electricity and Magnetism), and was a revived 'art' along with spiritualism, and neo (ie. invented) Paganism in the 18th and early 19th centuries. Suggestability is nothing new, certainly, and no established religion could have existed without it. But Hypnotism, by that moniker or otherwise, is a fad that is coming to an end. It needs to be finally quantified and wrapped up, its not a science it's just a sub-subject of Suggestion. (talk) 05:58, 11 April 2013 (UTC)

Hypnotism is quackery[edit]

Otherwise we would have seen a hypnosys shop in every corner. Militery, CIA, Doctors, theieves would have trained in hypnotism. This should be discussed in the article. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:13, 13 August 2012 (UTC)

There are an awful lot of hypnotherapists out there. And I bet the secret services, police and military try to use it all the time. If you think there are citable references that deny this, do add to the article. Myrvin (talk) 09:30, 20 August 2012 (UTC)
Read this [1] Myrvin (talk) 10:37, 20 August 2012 (UTC)
As a psychology scholar and hypnotist I have trained doctors, law enforcement and military personnel in hypnotic techniques, and this on government payrolls. In fact military organisations cannot function at all without hypnotic techniques which they have been using since time immemorial. More specifically it was used by the Greek phalanx, improved and perfected by Alexander the Great, and adopted in Europe by the Normans and later the Prussian Empire. In fact military hypnosis are so associated with the Prussians that it is often referred to as just "Prussian". I cannot comment about the CIA as their methods are secret. And yes professional thieves use a branch of hypnosis refereed to as mentalism. Yes this should be discussed in the article. The fact that you can easily be proven wrong except for the secret organisation CIA do not prove that hypnosis do work. But it destroys your argument against it. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:51, 21 March 2013 (UTC)
As an alchemical scholar and sorcerer I have trained CIA operatives in the use of magic for centuries, and I must disagree with your opinion. The CIA, at least, does not use hypnosis. Take my word for it. (talk) 01:52, 10 April 2013 (UTC)
As an alien terabiologist, I have been busily removing all traces of the hypnogogic synaptic networks from your species. Seriously though, .... no, there is nothing serious about this subject, it is (almost, but for a thread) complete bunkum. (talk) 06:01, 11 April 2013 (UTC)
As an astrology scholar and a homeopath I have trained Mossad operatives in cooking chocolate cakes for countless millenia. They're delicious. (talk) 08:38, 17 September 2013 (UTC)
"[There appears to be] an almost universal belief to the effect that anyone is competent to discuss psychological problems, whether he has taken the trouble to study the subject or not, and that while everybody’s opinion is of equal value, that of the professional psychologist must be excluded at all costs because he might spoil the the fun by producing some facts which would completely upset the speculation and the wonderful dream-castles so laboriously constructed by the layman."
H.J. Eysenck, Sense and Nonsense in Psychology, p.13
There's a chapter on hypnosis and suggestibility in the above opus; short though it is, it provides more information than some seem to be aware of. Paul Magnussen (talk) 17:51, 18 September 2013 (UTC)

Dull Article[edit]

Can someone knowledgeable about hypnosis please liven this article up a bit. I started to feel very sleepy while reading. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:34, 5 November 2011 (UTC)

Spelling question[edit]

Would the APA (citation 9, large gray box) have used the British spelling "behaviour"? Seems unlikely. Can someone check the original? (talk) 03:55, 31 October 2009 (UTC)Tim Abney 2009-10-30

Who is this article for?[edit]

This article should be useful and readable for people who don't know anything about hypnosis. Yet it's written like a manual or textbook. Even the first sentence has insider jargon in it (state vs. non-state theory). Katsam (talk) 07:30, 6 September 2009 (UTC)

Agreed. It's 2014 and this still stands. (talk) 00:28, 17 March 2014 (UTC)

Research: Hypnosis Proven for Some Conditions, Untested for Others[edit]

An interesting article:

-- Fyslee (talk) 04:31, 26 March 2009 (UTC)


Was the '1996 NIH report' mentioned in the medical applications section a product of the apolitical scientific NIH or was it from NCCAM? Nevard (talk) 05:45, 3 April 2009 (UTC)

The NCCAM is part of the NIH, so you will have to clarify that statement. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:04, 22 March 2013 (UTC)

External link[edit]

I'm a hypnosis researcher and I run an external educational site about the science behind hypnosis ( I don't want to add a link to it myself because it violates conflict of interest rules, but I would be interested in getting editors opinions about adding it to the links section. Against adding it is the fact that it is essentially a personal web page; but for it are that I reference everything, that it's not run for money, that it contains more detail about many topics than would be possible to include on the wiki page, and that apart from the wikipedia page it's one of the only places I know of that tries to give accurate information about hypnosis without selling anything. I'd be really interested to hear people's opinions (could people please sign comments so that nobody thinks it's just me replying!). In the meantime I'll do my best to add references & contribute to the Wikipedia page. MatWhalley (talk) 13:47, 24 April 2009 (UTC)

i think your website is a great resource and that it makes sense to post it as an external link (and as a reference, when statements here might link to articles hosted on your site). i posted your URL as an external link, and if you see anything which would be better-referenced by putting a link to your site i think you should go ahead and put it up. (or, if you feel dodgy about that, you can alert me and i'll do the linking.) best, Katsam (talk) 01:04, 20 May 2009 (UTC)

Whilst your website is reasonably well done, it should not be linked on a wiki page. That is becasue it is a personal web page and as such , contains a skewed interpretation from only one person. Whilst I think your page appears to be relatively objective, one persons opionion will always not be completely free from bias and as such a personal web page should not be linked. The websute also does not seem to cover anything that is not already on the wiki article, and there are many references on the wiki article for anyone to do their own objective further reserach. Hence I have removed the link. AwarenessEye (talk) 13:51, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

I think AwarenessEye is incorrect, such sites can be added if they add to the article and it seems yours does. I haven't reverted, however, as there is a DMOZ link rather than other links and I'm not sure what is appropriate in this case. If it was a normal list I would add your site back. Verbal chat 14:04, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Question. Is a 'Hypnosis Researcher' anything like a 'Homeopathy Researcher'? I myself am a Mammalian Gland Researcher. (talk) 06:04, 11 April 2013 (UTC)

Possible source[edit]

Apparantely, "The owner of the Wiki has collected media references to hypnosis for over thirty years and possesses one of the largest private collections on the subject in the world". -- OlEnglish (Talk) 02:39, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

Andriy Slyusarchuk[edit]

Check out the hypnotic abilities of this man. Maybe a reference to his achievements should be added to the article? NazarK (talk) 15:56, 2 July 2009 (UTC)

This article has major problems, improve article, get some sources and maybe i'll look into it.Sanitycult (talk) 06:10, 27 July 2009 (UTC)

Merger proposal[edit]

OK, as per wikiproject page discussion at Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Psychology#Suggestion_needs_your_help, I have set up a merge template here. As far as I can tell, the subject of suggestion is so intertwined with hypnosis (that is, apart from the dictionary definition of everyday use of the word), that it might be best subsumed into hypnosis where a more streamlined discussion of the concept can take place relating to the parent topic. Casliber (talk · contribs) 21:06, 8 August 2009 (UTC)


  • Casliber (talk · contribs) 21:06, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
  • Support Not even sure this should be the prime use of suggestion. Skinsmoke (talk) 03:35, 9 August 2009 (UTC)


  • Lindsay658 (talk) 02:13, 11 August 2009 (UTC) The entire question of suggestion, suggestibility, etc. is separate from, and has many different issues from that of hypnotism (which may, or may not, involve issues of "suggestion"). Furthermore, in addition to the argument about whether or not "hypnosis" is due to suggestion, and discussions of the extent to which directives delivered to a hypnotized subject are (or are not) "suggestive", there are many other issues of "suggestion" that must be discussed in a different, stand-alone article. If there is a problem with the article on "suggestion" it is the extent to which it has been invaded by matters that correctly belong in this article on hypnotism (incorrectly identified as "hypnosis").
  • "Suggestion" is a term with a meaning outside hypnosis. Expand, broaden, include other views, and keep it separate. DGG ( talk ) 20:42, 18 August 2009 (UTC)
  • The sections should stay separate. Hypnosis utilizes suggestion, but suggestion may be used without any reference or need for the idea of hypnosis. In fact, the hypnotists who have a non-state view of how it works would generally say that all hypnosis is suggestion, expectation and motivation, and nothing more. So from that perspective maybe it would be more fitting for the hypnosis section to be merged into an aspect of suggestion rather than the other way around. AwarenessEye (talk) 14:13, 28 August 2009 (UTC)
  • No, it doesn't. 'Hypnotism' is a neologism for Suggestion. It should be merged THE OTHER WAY AROUND (Hypnotism into Suggestion). I would add 'you iiiidiots' but it would not be productive. (talk) 06:06, 11 April 2013 (UTC)

Regulation of hypnosis worldwide[edit]

In Australia, individuals who wish to practice hypnosis are no longer required to register with a psychology registration board. The industry has been deregulated. I'd like to see a section in this article on the regulation of hypnosis worldwide. ----Action potential discuss contribs 08:45, 7 September 2009 (UTC)


There should be a section citing opposition to hypnotism, both from medical, cultural and scientific fields. Addressing these views from an unbiased objective view. Otherwise this entire article does not cover all aspects of this field and does not give a clear representation to an individual researching any hypothetical pros or cons. (I state hypothetical to keep this unbiased).


This section needs to be clarified. What does 'dissociation' mean here? It may mean that consciousness is separated from, e.g., the imagination - whatever that is. Or maybe it means something else. I do not find the idea, as explained here, to be 'surprisingly simple'. It looks very confusing.

I am also irritated by the use of his/her, he/she etc. Myrvin (talk) 07:49, 19 September 2009 (UTC)

Turns out that the text is ripped directly from the English abstract to the paper. The rest is in Chinese. Myrvin (talk) 12:08, 19 September 2009 (UTC) Could somebody post free hypnosis scripts

Question:can it be used in bad ways?[edit]

I once had a friend who has hypnotized, she said that you would not do anything under the influance of hypnosis that you would not do normaly, but some of the matterial described in this artical makes me dissagree. She told me that if you told someone who was hypnotized to take off there clothes or to steel something, they would not do it because their morals would not alow it. But I highly doubt that their morals would alow them to make a fool (no offence) out of themselves on stage ether. I just watched a utube vidio of a stage hypnotist who had people believe that they were porn stars and had them humping a chair. (all withtheir clothes on of course.) my point is; can these hypnotist's make you do things you dont want to do?Viperthesniper73 (talk) 17:31, 20 January 2010 (UTC)

There are people who have persuaded pretty young women to take their clothes off under the influence of hypnosis. George Estabrooks once said "I can hypnotize a man -- without his knowledge or consent -- into committing treason against the United States." It is scary stuff, especially drug induced hypnosis. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Aviatorpilotman (talkcontribs) 22:31, 12 May 2010 (UTC)

If you want to add a 'dangers' section start by finding credible references. Keep in mind that the wiki article on 'pipe' doesn't include a dangers section that it can be used to induce death by bludgeoning the victim although it indeed can. Everything that one can 'get' a patient to do through hypnosis can also be caused through talking alone. Hypnosis simply increases the likelihood that one will comply. Furthermore you generally can not get patients to do things they wouldn't already do.

I'm not saying don't create a dangers page however please keep things in context. (talk) 07:14, 26 August 2010 (UTC)

the hypnosis you are referring to is normally stage hypnosis which is a pre arranged skit with members of the audience. it is impossible for regular medical hypnosis or memory hypnosis to force someone to do something theyw ill not do when awake and fully alert. after all hypnosis is not a sleep state or invasive to subconcious at all. for more info watch mythbusters on hypnosis myths. (talk) 23:56, 2 January 2012 (UTC)

Unbelievable. The fact that the article is still in its retarded state is just unacceptable. More and more people like this guy is going to look it up on wikipedia after hearing about it from their "experienced" friends or after watching some youtube clips and then their views are going to be reinforced as they will leave thinking that this is some real scientific phenomenon. As it stands right now it would be better to just delete the article. It only serves to tarnish wikipedia's reputation and to spread some misinformation among the uninformed.-- (talk) 21:30, 5 January 2014 (UTC)

Insufficient authority[edit]

"Contrary to a popular misconception - that hypnosis is a form of unconsciousness resembling sleep - contemporary research suggests that it is actually a wakeful state of focused attention[2]". Unfortunately, reference [2] is an unsubstantiated assertion which also refers to 'contemporary research' without citing it. --Mindsci (talk) 19:21, 7 April 2010 (UTC)


To judge from the first line of the article (Sam B. is gay) this article has been vandalized and someone with editorial authority ought to look into the matter. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:37, 5 May 2010 (UTC)

Hypnosis is magic and voodoo ergo dangerous[edit]

It's important to state that hypnosis use evil jinns (devils) and that it's very dangerous. There is a witchcraft stage beneath all the medical and clinical terminology. People have a right to know you can't hide that and just put in the article the so-called "pros" (cause there's no pros at all) view. It is necessary to warn people that it uses invisible forces like evil jinns (devils) and that the damages and dangers are real. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 00:14, 8 June 2010

Please provide a reliable source. --Ronz (talk) 00:24, 8 June 2010 (UTC)


This is an encyclopedia : how can you not talk about the dangers ? How come you're hiding that ? Ask yourselves if you are really doing a correct job here —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:49, 8 June 2010 (UTC)

The dangers[edit]

Everything the authors are saying and every reference published here is theoritical or imaginary they have no proof of what they're doing or saying. And what i'm saying is important, the people have a right to know about hypnosis in this encyclopedia. This is not controversial, what is controversial is all the medical and clinical terminology hijack to mask that it's voodoo or magic and most of all EVIL. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:44, 8 June 2010 (UTC)

The dangers of claiming dangers without even explaining[edit]

Sorry which is it again, Magic or Voodoo? I get confused easily. Mostly the confusion comes into play when somebody makes a claim about a topic with, generally speaking, over exaggerated claims of its own yet the new claims seem to have no substance.

One might assume that the jinns you speak of have to do with the voodoo religion, but you know what they say about assuming anything these days. What happened to the good old days when you could just trust a charlatan, prophet, sooth-sayer, faith healer, or con-artist on the appealing nature of their claims alone.

So, what are Jinns. Why do these Jinns have any relation to magic and or voodoo; which is it again.. you said or so it can only be one.. or the other. After that please explain how this has been tested and proved to be in relation to hypnotism, and not just the topic of "magic or voodoo"

With out proof to say for a fact these topics are in fact related to one another. Anyone who added this information would be not only wasting their time as it would be re-edited out of the article, but it would also invite more red herrings to the party if it were to stay. Josh (talk) 03:55, 10 December 2011 (UTC)

Incorrect information in intro[edit]

This part:

"Contrary to a popular misconception - that hypnosis is a form of unconsciousness resembling sleep - contemporary research suggests that it is actually a wakeful state of focused attention[2] and heightened suggestibility,[3] with diminished peripheral awareness.[4] In the first book on the subject, Neurypnology (1843), Braid described "hypnotism" as a state of physical relaxation accompanied and induced by mental concentration ("abstraction").[5]"

The [2] link is broken and furthermore it has been well understood since Braid that hypnosis is conscious and no one has been shown to disprove this. Also there is no evidence that there is a popular misconception that hypnotism is a form of unconsciousness. I don't mean to indicate that this is deceitful but simply not rigorous enough. I recommend someone 'axe' the first part of this paragraph so it reads

"Hypnosis is a wakeful state of focused attention[2] and heightened suggestibility,[3] with diminished peripheral awareness.[4]" (talk) 07:08, 26 August 2010 (UTC)

Or perhaps "Hypnosis is a wakeful state of focused attention where focus have shifted from peripheral awareness to the suggestions of the hypnotists. This shift of focus means a heightened suggestibility and a diminished peripheral awareness.". Naturally with added references etc. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:23, 22 March 2013 (UTC)

List of topics characterized as pseudoscience[edit]

This subject is included on the mentioned list, but there is no mention of it on this page. Seems like a gap to me (talk) 00:53, 30 October 2010 (UTC)

Need for criticism and proposal to split the article[edit]

The article has a fair few problems, however from a non-biased stand point, it badly needs to look at criticism of hypnosis both in general (ie those who dismiss it as a medical practice) and in the specific (those who see its results as being placebo-effects for specific disease etc).

There simply is no consensus about hypnosis for any use, and the results from regression hypnosis in particular have been heavily discredited: "There is no evidence that the use of consciousness-altering techniques, such as drug-mediated interviews or hypnosis, can reveal or accurately elaborate factual information about any past experiences including childhood sexual abuse." - Royal College of Psychiatrists (1997) Original Text

The article talks as if hypnosis is concretely accepted, and this is simply not true, and as such it needs to heavily emphasise in the introduction that to date there is little proof for certain aspects of it.

It is because of this that I think we should turn the article into a number of smaller more specific articles: Hypnosis in medicine, Hypnosis in psychotherapy, Stage Hypnosis and Hypnosis and Memory.This would allow each specific form to have its own page, and not give the reader the impression that every form is equally accepted, and has the same short comings.

LostAlone (talk) 04:47, 18 November 2010 (UTC)

"The article talks as if hypnosis is concretely accepted" He is right, and I second his advice for edits to this page. (talk) 03:57, 10 December 2011 (UTC)

Fun fact[edit]

"Skeptics point out the difficulty of distinguishing between hypnosis and the placebo effect, proposing that hypnosis is so heavily reliant upon the effects of suggestion and belief that it would be hard to imagine how a credible placebo control could ever be devised for a hypnotism study."

Fully knowing that Wikipedia is not to make judgements over its sources, the above citation sounds rather silly from the viewpoint that hypnosis and placebo are two names (and usages) for pretty much the same phenomenon. :D (talk) 22:27, 16 December 2010 (UTC)


I have removed this from the intro.

"The "Dean of American Hypnotists" was Ormond Dale McGill. He wrote the seminal Encyclopedia of Genuine Stage Hypnotism (the acknowledged bible of stage hypnotism) in 1947."

This may be true, but we need reasons (citations etc.) to show he belongs in the same paragraph as Mesmer. Myrvin (talk) 11:48, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

Hypnotic Spiral[edit]

Example of Hypnotic Spiral used by Hypnotists.

I am new to editing so please be patient. I just thought it might be useful to have a mention of the spiral used by Hypnotists for many years. I can't see any reference to it but here's a good image which clicks through to a spiral type video we could include in the article.

Reasons to include it are based on , I guess , expectation of the reader.

Since it "suggests" in one glance that the topic is Hypnosis.

Anyway please tell me if you agree and perhaps we could have a section on pros and cons of the effect or "power" of the spiral to induce the desired state.

Lawrencedwolf (talk) 13:56, 13 March 2011 (UTC)

To my knowledge, the use of spirals is largely based on film and television, which then migrated into hypnosis pop-culture. They aren't typically used in genuine hypnosis except, perhaps, in cases where the subject has a strong belief that a spiral will somehow work better. RobinHood70 talk 18:15, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

Reworking of Hypnotherapy section[edit]

I've recently reworked what used to be titled the "Hypnotherapy" section and renamed it "Applications", since hypnotherapy was only one section of it, really. There was a lot of good info in the section, but it really jumped around, so I've tried to improve the organization and flow a little bit. I didn't add or remove anything factual information – the only things I altered other than cutting & pasting were to add a bit of narrative (and even much of that was cobbled together from the information that was there) and remove overlapping statements. I've done what I can for now, but it could probably use another pair of eyes. RobinHood70 talk 05:55, 31 March 2011 (UTC)

Related to some of the topics addressed in this section, I would suggest adding information about some preliminary research expressing brief hypnosis interventions as possibly being a useful tool for managing painful HIV-DSP because of its history of usefulness in pain management, its long-term effectiveness of brief interventions, the ability to teach self-hypnosis to patients, the cost-effectiveness of the intervention, and the advantage of using such an intervention as opposed to the use of pharmaceutical drugs. [1] HalimahMohammed (talk) 03:18, 18 April 2016 (UTC)

I can't say much about the use of hypnotherapy in pain management, but as long as you have appropriate source I don't see why it shouldn't be added. With regards to the sentence about memory, I have no idea what "memory hardening" is, so it'd be nice for that to be clarified. I'd also suggest adding a sentence about why hypnotherapy leads to more confidence in false memory--such as the generation of more vivid images, and more images in number. Jennjiyoun (talk) 01:25, 2 May 2016 (UTC)


Hypnosis has been used in criminal activity. [2] That'd be a good addition to the article, but I can't think of where to stick it. Dream Focus 07:15, 16 April 2011 (UTC)

I would suggest putting into the "Applications" section. Granted, it's not a desirable application of it, but it is an application nevertheless. Just make sure if you're citing the article that it's considered a reliable source. I'm not familiar with very many UK-based publications, so that's just a suggested precaution, not a comment on the source. RobinHood70 talk 16:19, 16 April 2011 (UTC)

Mind-dissociation paragraph[edit]

The last sentence of the "Mind-dissociation" paragraph is incredibly clumsy, and its meaning could be considered as less than clear... — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:28, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

A lot of it was cruft and poorly worded to boot. I'm not entirely sure what the intended meaning was, myself. I've tried to simplify the entire section, hopefully without changing the original meaning. RobinHood70 talk 18:10, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
I have some concerns with the re-writing. Namely, reason is not "replaced" during or as a result of hypnosis, though there can certainly be a suspension of it to some degree. Most subjects will become extremely uneasy and snap out of the hypnotic trance, or refuse a post-hypnotic suggestion, if it is suggested that they do something they find morally repugnant or otherwise against their value system. The paragraph as it currently reads makes it sound like the hypnotist utterly controls his or her subject, which is not at all the case. Also, I'd like to know how that relates to hypnotherapy. RobinHood70 talk 18:36, 16 June 2011 (UTC)
IP 163.*: Sorry, I hadn't realized that parts of the source were in English, so hadn't spotted what the material was taken from. Given that, the theory should stand, though it should also be summarized, rather than quoted verbatim (or nearly). RobinHood70 talk 17:55, 17 June 2011 (UTC)

() Actually, looking at the cited paper again, it's on a general university server and does not appear to have been vetted in any way. There's also no clear indication of the qualifications of Y.D. Tsai - it may well be a student paper. RobinHood70 talk 18:14, 17 June 2011 (UTC)

A search of the author's name reveals that s/he turns up as co-author in what seem to be legitimate academic publications in psychology in Chinese, but I have no idea if this is the same person. I am not able to find the name as a faculty member at that school. This seems to be a foreign language/culture problem; it's very difficult for us to determine what is or is not legitimate in Chinese academia from the outside. Agent Cooper (talk) 15:40, 17 January 2012 (UTC)

James Randi[edit]

I have removed Randi’s definition (“a mutual agreement of the operator and the subject that the subject will cooperate in following suggestions”) from the prefatory material.

Sceptics are certainly very valuable people, but Randi‘s attitude seems to be “If I, personally, can’t explain it, it doesn‘t happen.”

Hypnotism is a well established phenonemon, and Randi’s assertion is immediately demolished by the fact that responses can be elicited in the subject that aren’t under voluntary control. Examples are given in H.J. Eysenck, Sense and Nonsense in Psychology (Penguin, 1957), pp.37–38. Paul Magnussen (talk) 17:56, 15 July 2011 (UTC)

What do you mean by "established"? That many people believe in it? Or that it is popular? Energy drinks are well established, but I know of one very popular drink that is advertised in a misleading way, as if it contained some previously little-known nutritional supplement which provides extra energy - although if you pay close attention you'll find the ad concedes that each dose of the drink has as much caffeine as a cup of coffee.
If your examples are so good, why not type a few in. This is an online encyclopedia, for people who can't get to a university library easily. --Uncle Ed (talk) 17:14, 20 November 2011 (UTC)
Sorry, but I don't see how a single book from 1957 'immediately demolishes' Randi's definition. To the contrary, I believe Randi's definition has a great deal of science supporting it.JoelWhy (talk) 13:52, 8 December 2011 (UTC)

Science and entertainment[edit]

Let's adopt the suggestion made a year ago about splitting the article. Whether it's on pages or sections doesn't matter to me.

The history of "hypnotism" would be an interesting start. Let's summarize what Mesmer and others have said about it over the last 2 or 3 centuries.

A section on stage hypnosis or hypnosis in entertainment would also be good, because that is how most readers find out about it. For example, there was an episode of the Dick Van Dyke Show, depicting a (supposed) instance of post-hypnotic suggestion. [3]

A scientific approach should be in the article, in an easy-to-read format. It should answer questions such as:

  • Do people remember having been hypnotized?
  • Can a hypnotist implant a suggestion that the subject won't remember having been given?
    Such as, every time a bell rings, you'll "get roaring drunk" and then sober up the next time a bell rings
  • Do you have to go to sleep to be hypnotized?
    Is getting sleepy even common?
  • What sort of things can a person be hypnotized to think or forget, feel or not feel, do or avoid doing?
    Could a woman be made to think her husband is a movie star and beg him for his autograph like a giggly teenager?
  • How effective has hypnosis been in removing bad habits like cigarette smoking? Or problems like stage fright?

I'd really like to see a clear distinction between the Historical Theories; the presentation of hypnosis in entertaining demonstrations, movies, and TV; and what modern science has proved to be true. --Uncle Ed (talk) 17:10, 20 November 2011 (UTC)


Eye movements confirm hypnosis A true trance can't be faked. By Laura Sanders Science News Web edition October 31st, 2011 ... regarding Sakari Kallio of the University of Skövde in Sweden and the University of Turku in Finland. "The woman’s saccades were shorter and scarcer under hypnosis, the team reports online October 24 in PLoS ONE."

Because the results are from a single person, larger studies are needed to know what these strange eye movements represent, says Irving Kirsch, a psychologist at Harvard Medical School’s Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston and the University of Plymouth in England. “It’s an interesting study,” he says, “but we’ll have to see if it’s generalizable.” (talk) 06:55, 26 November 2011 (UTC)

Private whispers??[edit]

Under the Stage Hypnosis section, it says "Ormond McGill's New Encyclopedia of Stage Hypnosis describes an entire "fake hypnosis" act that depends upon the use of private whispers throughout." What are "private whispers"? I believe this is saying that McGill would literally whisper to the person on the stage telling him to play along, but I can't say that for certain. The description seems very confusing to me. Anyone care to explain? JoelWhy (talk) 13:49, 8 December 2011 (UTC)

Coherence and readability of page, and possible need for more structured page style[edit]

I came across this page and I am surprised at how rambling and disorganized it seems. Many of the sections seem to jump around in terms of subject and there are a lot of references to various hypnological concepts without explanations of the basic ideas behind them.

Is there a way we can get a few people to come in and fix the page? Don't get me wrong there is a lot of good information on the page, it just needs to be more organized and readable.

The lead section is a great example of this problem:

As far as I can gather from past experience on this site (and a quick read of the lead section of the Wikipedia manual of style found here), the lead section of a Wikipedia page is supposed to be similar to an executive summary or the abstract of an academic paper in that it is a quick overview of the topic being discussed in the page and is written in an accessible manner.

The lead section for this page has 3 paragraphs that cover 3 different subjects: Jumping from a rather technical definition of hypnosis that is better explained in the Definition section, what looks to be an incorrectly sourced etymology of the words hypnotism and hypnosis after a cursory search in the online etymology dictionary and the Wiktionary. The lead section ends with an awkwardly worded attempt to clarify the common misconception that when someone is "put under" in hypnosis they are not unconscious, but rather they are so hyper-focused on a particular concept or fantasy that which leaves them much more open and receptive to suggestions from another person.

Respectfully, Shertert (talk) 14:30, 19 December 2011 (UTC)

Thank you for your notes. See also: WP:SOFIXIT. :) — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 14:54, 19 December 2011 (UTC)
I have tried to start the lead with another def from Enc Brit. So it doesn't leap into theories straight away. Myrvin (talk) 09:33, 20 August 2012 (UTC)

Link removed[edit]

I know that Wikipedia is not a collection of links, but I found this site (, which offers some free ebooks on this topic, and included it in this article, but it got removed. I notices that article has no external links, and I think this site is suited to provide more information for readers. --BiH (talk) 10:26, 18 May 2012 (UTC)

I removed that link (again?) because the ebooks which it promotes require a subscription fee. This does not seem like an objective, useful resource to be linking to. Oddity (talk) 07:21, 4 June 2012 (UTC)

Contradictions with Self-Hypnosis Article[edit]

This article: "People who practice self-hypnosis sometimes require assistance; some people use devices known as mind machines to assist in the process, whereas others use hypnotic recordings."

Self-Hypnosis article: "Listening to pre-recorded audio or other media is often mistaken for self-hypnosis, but is just another form of hypnosis."

Also... This article: "Contrary to a popular misconception—that hypnosis is a form of unconsciousness resembling sleep—contemporary research suggests that hypnotic subjects are fully awake and are focusing attention, with a corresponding decrease in their peripheral awareness." (Expounded further later-on in the article.)

Self-Hypnosis article: "While self-hypnosis could be connected to brain, it is an act of sending conscious signal to brain. In short, it puts our brain to sleep."

I just started reading these articles, so there may be more discrepancies. I'll note that the Self-Hypnosis article needs cleaning-up, in general (IMHO).

I'm not an expert on this topic, so I must defer to whomever is for the actual editing. Dmutters (talk) 12:21, 4 December 2012 (UTC)

what about the hypnotist?[edit]

Little is generally said about the key role of the hypnotist, no mention of it in the definition opening of the article. a reader might surely think that hypnosis is an involuntary event that happens for no specific reason and through no specific way! (talk) 15:42, 20 March 2013 (UTC)

The "Further Reading" link[edit]

On 16 January 2013, I was officially informed that the University of New South Wales had approved my admission to the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.

My research, undertaken in the domain of History and Philosophy of Science, was overseen by two experienced (Ph.D.) supervisors who also made sure that my dissertation and its contents met all of the scholarly requirements of the University of New South Wales.

The dissertation, James Braid: Surgeon, Gentleman Scientist, and Hypnotist, was externally examined by two eminent U.S. scholars.

Its abstract can be seen at User:Dr_Lindsay_B_Yeates.

An electronic copy of my dissertation has been lodged in the University of New South Wales’ Library’s repository, and its entire contents are freely available to all at: [4].

Whilst it might seem that the insertion of such a link by the dissertation’s author raises the issue of a potential conflict of interest (see WP:COI), I would strongly argue that, given the extensive historical and bibliographic resources in relation to the the early development of hypnotism — and the various controversies involving Lafontaine, M’Neile (and others) with Braid — that this external link will provide for other editors (in particular, a number of important contemporaneous M’Neile, Lafontaine, and Braid resources that have been transcribed, corrected and annotated for the modern reader), I believe that these concerns are unfounded; and I hope that the potential provision of the linkage will be understood as being consistent with the policies relating to the provision of reliable sources (WP:IRS) in general, and reliable historical sources in particular (WP:HISTRS).Dr Lindsay B Yeates (talk) 06:19, 19 June 2013 (UTC)

Spamming it to multiple articles while being aware of WP:COI wasn't a good choice.
I'd think it would be useful on Braid's article as a reference. Maybe elsewhere as a reference as well. Probably not appropriate as an external link. --Ronz (talk) 00:12, 20 June 2013 (UTC)

Consciousness vs. unconscious mind[edit]

I have been editing this article for syntax, word usage, spelling, capitalization and punctuation, while making an effort not to change meaning. I have come across two items in this section that I have questions about.

1) The section heading itself -- I wonder, shouldn't it be "Conscious vs. unconscious mind"? I didn't see any discussion of "consciousness" in the paragraph following the heading, but I did see "conscious mind" and "unconscious mind" several times. Also, pairing a noun ("consciousness") and an adjective + noun ("unconscious mind") on both sides of vs. seems incorrect.
2) In the fourth sentence, I wonder about the phrase "did not employ these concepts" (referring to "conscious" and "unconscious mind" in the previous sentence or sentences). I wonder whether it is necessary. If it is necessary, I wonder whether there isn't a better verb than "employ". I also wonder whether the concepts were already known when the Victorian researchers were doing their work and they just ignored them (and, if so, that would suggest a more pertinent verb than "employ"), or did they precede Freud and the introduction of these terms (in which case they could not have "employed" them because they had not yet been introduced, or coined, so the phrase "did not employ these concepts" would be unnecessary)? CorinneSD (talk) 03:47, 16 August 2013 (UTC)
I agree and have tried some changes. See what you think. Part of the problem with the second half of the section is that there is no citation to justify it. I've put a [citation needed] tag. Myrvin (talk) 10:43, 16 August 2013 (UTC)
Good. I just wonder if the word "The" (twice) is needed in the heading. Don't you think the abbreviated form, "Conscious and unconscious mind" or "Conscious vs. unconscious mind" is sufficient? (I think "vs." is O.K. because of the discussion in that section.) What do you think?
I want to ask for your, or anyone's, opinion on another point. It is in the section headed "James Braid". I notice that in both the first and second paragraphs (not the block quote), the word "Mesmerism" is capitalized, while in the section headed "Franz Mesmer," both "mesmerism" and "mesmerist" are not capitalized. I see in the block quote(s), "Mesmerism" is capitalized, but those statements were written in the 1800s. I think "mesmerism" and "mesmerist" have become simply words, so that capitalization is unnecessary, but I thought I'd ask for opinions on this. There ought to be consistency throughout the article. CorinneSD (talk) 15:56, 16 August 2013 (UTC)
The quotes in the OED start with M and move to m in 1846 - I think you are right, it is m nowadays. Myrvin (talk) 09:00, 18 August 2013 (UTC)
I just re-read the James Braid and Franz Mesmer sections and realize that the word "mesmerism" (or "Mesmerism") was used in both sections to refer to actions taken with regard to Mesmerism, or views of Mesmerism, at that time, in the 1800s. Therefore, wouldn't it make sense to capitalize the word in those contexts (even though today we do not capitalize the word)? If you agree, then I will make the instances consistent, so they're all capitalized (in those two sections).CorinneSD (talk) 17:06, 18 August 2013 (UTC)

Hysteria vs. suggestion[edit]

In the 7th (last) sentence of the first paragraph in this section, there are a few problems. The sentence does not make sense as it is written, and I am seeking ideas as to how to fix it. If people were old enough in 1784 to observe a demonstration of mesmerism, they would be pretty old in 1860 -- at least 76 years old. I wonder if that is what was meant.CorinneSD (talk) 16:31, 16 August 2013 (UTC)

It's the Academy doing the investigating. Myrvin (talk)
I had figured that, but thought there were other small problems with the sentence, too. I had been editing for hours, and I think I was too tired to deal with it. I have worked on that sentence and made some other small changes in the sentences just before it. I think the paragraph reads better now.CorinneSD (talk) 15:33, 17 August 2013 (UTC)

Pierre Janet[edit]

In the second sentence in this section, there is something that just doesn't sound right. I wonder whether "which dealt with" is the correct phrase to follow "had completed his doctorate in philosophy". I thought the topic following "which dealt with" would normally refer specifically to a doctoral thesis, or possibly more broadly to research leading to the thesis. I also wonder about "had completed his doctorate in philosophy". A doctorate in philosophy is the generic degree for any doctorate (besides the specialized M.D., Ed.D, etc.). Janet's subjects were psychology and physiology, not philosophy. I'm going to see if I can find out in what subject, exactly, Janet received his doctorate. Any ideas or opinions are welcome.CorinneSD (talk) 16:58, 16 August 2013 (UTC)

Well, I just looked at the Wikepedia article on Pierre Janet, and it seems that he received two advanced degrees. I've copied the information here:
He first published the results of his research in his philosophy thesis in 1889 and in his medical thesis, L'état mental des hystériques, in 1892. He earned a degree in medicine the following year in 1893.

The first sentence says, "his philosophy thesis", but he was working on psychology at the Saltpetriere Hospital. So, I don't know... Maybe I should just leave it as it is.CorinneSD (talk) 17:57, 16 August 2013 (UTC)

Changed it to PhD. Myrvin (talk) 08:53, 18 August 2013 (UTC)

Dave Elman[edit]

In the second sentence in this section, the initial and later titles of his book are given. I notice that they are both in single quotes. Is that correct Wikepedia style? I see earlier in this same article titles of works shown in italics. Any help is appreciated.CorinneSD (talk) 17:39, 16 August 2013 (UTC)

I think either is used. I've tended to use italics for a while now. I changed the book name for D Barrett, I don't think the original cited book exists. Myrvin (talk) 08:55, 18 August 2013 (UTC)

The Most Comprehensive theory of hypnosis was not even mentioned.[edit]

I was very disappointed to find that my theory of hypnosis was not even mentioned. I feel it is the most comprehensive theory of hypnosis to date. It was published in 2001 in the journal Contemporary Hypnosis and the full title of the article is "A Theory of Hypnosis Based on Principles of Conditioning and Inhibition" You can find a copy of the theory in the articles section of my website: I also recommend you look at two other articles in the same articles section: "Hypnotherapy: A Re-Appraisal" which was originally published in the journal Psychotherapy: Theory, Research and Practice (1970); and Commentary on a theory of hypnosis Parts I and II. Although the original definition of hypnosis given in the theory is that it is a state of hypersuggestibility, I also mention the definition given by B.F. Skinner - that it is a state of heightened belief. And this I feel now is a better definition than a state of hyperrsuggestibility. The various hypnotic phenomena are explained in terms of principles of conditioning (Pavlovian) and inhibition. Of particular interest is how the theory explains how hypnosis, how a state of heightened belief, facilitates re-conditioning or re-programming. I feel this is the most valuable aspect of hypnosis. The biggest problem that most people have is that it is very hard for them to change their negative programming. This is why hypnotherapy is the most effective form of psychotherapy: It greatly facilitates positive change. I also point out in the theory that hypnosis is quite common in every day life. Anyone who is good at using the power of word for persuasive purposes is using hypnosis according to my theory. This includes good salesmen, lawyers, ministers and politicians. Also I question the myth that one cannot get a person to do anything under hypnosis that they would not do under ordinary circumstances. Hypnosis can be used to do harm as well as good depending on the direction of the suggestions given. Hitler was a perfect example of how hypnosis (the state of heightened belief he was able to create via his very high persuasive abilities - via his powerful oratory abilities enabling him to literally mesmorize his large audiences) can be used for negative purposes. This should also stand as a warning regarding the current use by various people in diffeent forms of the media, including the internet to, in a similar way, negatively influence the public. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:00, 30 August 2013 (UTC)

    This doesn't fall under "hypnotism" which is when he can literally put people to sleep and then suggest the stuff he wantsQwed117 (talk) 21:33, 4 June 2014 (UTC)

American Medical Association, 1958[edit]

  The 1958 report on hypnosis was rescinded by the AMA in 1987.  — Preceding unsigned comment added by Erithil X (talkcontribs) 19:22, 31 October 2013 (UTC) 

Changes to lead[edit]

An editor has removed a Britannica quote:

Hypnosis has been defined as "...a special psychological state with certain physiological attributes, resembling sleep only superficially and marked by a functioning of the individual at a level of awareness other than the ordinary conscious state."

This leaves the main definition as:

Hypnosis is a mental state or imaginative role-enactment where the subject is guided to respond to suggestions either by a hypnotist, or in self-hypnosis, by the subject themselves.

It seems to me that this is a large change which is not justified by the editor's assertion that the Britannica def. had WP:WEASEL words and vagueness". The EB quote is properly cited and seems to me to be a reasonable introduction. I intend to put it back.Myrvin (talk) 13:46, 4 March 2014 (UTC)

I agree, and I will support you. I think the way it was written was fine. Besides, the reflexive pronoun "themselves" does not go with the singular "subject". The sentence "Hypnosis is a mental state..." does not flow smoothly. CorinneSD (talk) 16:20, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
I am very happy to have you smooth out my prose. The previous lead paragraph had serious problems and lacked a topic definition. "Hypnosis has been defined as" were the weasel words. The following sentence was just ugly, vague and redundant- "This definition captures our common understanding of hypnosis; however, research has not only revealed that hypnosis is a much more complicated thing, but it has also given rise to a number of definitions." Bhny (talk) 16:31, 4 March 2014 (UTC)

(Edit conflict) :::I have a few questions:

1) Do you see any place for distinguishing between a commonly held definition, or understanding of what hypnosis is, and more scientific definitions?
I could only extract 2 definitions from the previous lead- one a mental state and the other imaginative role-enactment. I combined both in my edit. Bhny (talk) 17:04, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
2) Don't you think the phrase, "imaginative role-enactment" is a bit too academic and not readily understandable by the average reader?
No, that is three common English words Bhny (talk) 17:04, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
3) Don't you think self-hypnosis can be introduced and explained later in the article? I'm not sure it is necessary to mention it right at the beginning of the article. If you leave that part out, I think the sentence will flow better.
OK Bhny (talk) 17:04, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
4) If "has been defined as" is changed to "is defined as" or simply "is", do you still object to the Encylopedia Britannica definition, and why? – CorinneSD (talk) 16:49, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
I object to "is defined". Please see WP:REFERS. The normal structure of the first sentence is- <topic> is <definition> Bhny (talk) 17:04, 4 March 2014 (UTC)

I have reinstated the EB quote. Myrvin (talk) 19:40, 4 March 2014 (UTC)[Moved]

I have rewritten the secondary descriptions to try to separate them out again. Myrvin (talk) 20:51, 5 March 2014 (UTC)

It is terrible. How is it better than my definition? Bhny (talk) 19:56, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
I feel that you didn't really answer my first and fourth questions. Your answer to my second question is a bit flippant. I know that, separately, they are three common words, but together, the phrase is a bit unusual and does not help define hypnosis for someone who does not already know what hypnosis is or is not familiar with the phrase. Regarding my fourth question, I think you got caught up in the wording of "has been defined as" and missed the main part of the question. I have modified the question slightly to include "is" as an alternative to "has been defined as". CorinneSD (talk) 20:23, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
In December 2012, when Bhny last edited this article, you left the EB definition, only changing "defined as" to "is". How come it has suddenly become "terrible"? Your words - actually a paraphrase of words already there - are more specific than EB, which serves to introduce the topic more generally. I also suspect your paraphrase would not quite be borne out by the citations. There were two different ways of describing hypnosis and you have combined them into one. Myrvin (talk) 20:33, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
I don't think I read the definition last time. I was just fixing the WP:REFERS problem. But this is entirely irrelevant! We are here to improve the article not discuss history. The EB definition isn't well written. How would anyone know what hypnosis is after reading this waffle- "a special psychological state with certain physiological attributes..." Bhny (talk) 07:54, 5 March 2014 (UTC)
I think you'll find they are ordinary English words. It says it is a distinctive mental state that also has effects on the body. You may not like it, but it is a cited definition from a reliable source. There may be a cited general definition that is clearer, but just removing it leaves something that is neither general nor obviously better. Myrvin (talk) 09:41, 5 March 2014 (UTC)
The EB definition says very little in a lot of words. "Special...state" and "certain...attributes" are meaningless WP:WEASEL words. If you think this is a worthwhile definition (I don't) then it should at least be edited down to its essence. Bhny (talk) 16:55, 5 March 2014 (UTC)
The words you mention are not banned in WP:WEASEL. The only places "certain" appears is when it is used in sentences in the Weasel article - which, presumably, it wouldn't be if it were banned. "Special" doesn't appear at all, nor anything like it. And how can anyone object to "state" and "attributes" in the context used? Myrvin (talk) 18:41, 5 March 2014 (UTC)
No words are banned. Just empty phrases like "certain physiological attributes" are discouraged. If there is an attribute then say what it is. Bhny (talk) 19:17, 5 March 2014 (UTC)
Hard to argue against a source like Britannica, as long as their definition is clear in the context of this article. If it's not clear, we need to expand the article, not remove the reference. --Ronz (talk) 18:55, 5 March 2014 (UTC)
It is not hard to argue against Britannica. I am doing it here. This definition is poorly written. "certain physiological attributes" says nothing. We can do better. There is no need to quote it word for word. Bhny (talk) 19:17, 5 March 2014 (UTC)
If you don't quote it word for word, there is a danger that you will not give the meaning that the reference intended. To say some phrases say "nothing" is overstating your case. Perhaps the word 'certain' could be removed, but why bother running the risk? Describing hypnosis is a difficult thing, as only a little reading of texts confirms. Sometimes, life is just not that simple. Myrvin (talk) 15:41, 6 March 2014 (UTC)
How is an encyclopedia to be written if everything has to be quoted word for word? What is the risk here? Bhny (talk) 22:10, 6 March 2014 (UTC)
Again, you don't win arguments by hyperbole. Wikipedia:Quotations says: "Quotations are a fundamental attribute of Wikipedia. Quotations—often informally called "quotes"—provide information directly; quoting a brief excerpt from an original source can sometimes explain things better and less controversially than trying to explain them in one's own words." What you have done is follow: "A summary or paraphrase of a quotation is often better where the original wording could be improved". This is a long way from deleting it completely, which was your original position. I have put the original quote in the reference until other editors have read your paraphrase. Myrvin (talk) 07:50, 7 March 2014 (UTC)
I've read only part of the thread, but I do prefer Bhny's definition. Describing what hypnosis is not, without first introducing this, is not a definition. @Lova Falk: could you give your opinion on this? Best regards, Joshua Jonathan -Let's talk! 08:03, 7 March 2014 (UTC)

I believe that there needs to be a citation after the definition, "Hypnosis is a state of human consciousness involving focused attention and reduced peripheral awareness and an enhanced capacity for response to suggestion." I am suggesting this citation [2] HalimahMohammed (talk) 03:51, 18 April 2016 (UTC)

More changes to lead[edit]

I have reinstated the lead again. If an editor wants different wording here, they must have a different and better citation. Hypnosis is not just a "state", it is a mental or psychological state. It is not just heightened awareness, there is much more to it than that. This is a complex subject, which is probably why the EB says what it says. Myrvin (talk) 08:58, 11 September 2014 (UTC)

I've tried to simplify it to make it less verbose. Myrvin (talk) 14:58, 11 September 2014 (UTC)

Much of the lead looks dodgy to me. I have put two cn tags today. The first claims that Spiegel says "contemporary research suggests that hypnotic subjects are fully awake" on p. 22. There is no such idea there, nor that I can find it in the book. Also, the lead says that in Braid's book there is a description of "hypnotism" as a state of physical relaxation accompanied and induced by mental concentration ("abstraction")." Again, I can't find this anywhere in Braid. This seems to be OR with lazy references. Myrvin (talk) 10:42, 11 September 2014 (UTC)

Myrvin, on the basis of at least a decade of the deepest and most comprehensive study of Braid, his works, his theories, and his practices (to a Ph.D. level) I can positively confirm that your speculation (that Braid never said or wrote any such thing, ever) is absolutely correct.Dr Lindsay B Yeates (talk) 22:02, 12 September 2014 (UTC)

Thanks Lindsay. What about the Spiegel assertion? I think there are some people who think that subjects are fully awake, but not in Spiegel. Myrvin (talk) 10:30, 13 September 2014 (UTC)

Myrvin, regardless of whether the (currently excised) passage is speaking of Spiegel, père, or Spiegel, fils, or the two combined, and regardless of their unusual views on hypnotism, hypnotization, hypnotic susceptibility, and their extraordinary (syllogistic) approach to smoking cessation, I can't ever recall them making any such outrageous "fully awake" assertions.Dr Lindsay B Yeates (talk) 11:06, 14 September 2014 (UTC)
I killed it. Myrvin (talk) 09:18, 15 September 2014 (UTC)

Wordiness and Trustworthiness[edit]

the first line of the entire thing is excessively wordy and the article seems to be biased toward Hypnotism. there is nothing to show any mainstream consensus on the issueQwed117 (talk) 21:31, 4 June 2014 (UTC)

This WP article does seem to have a rah-rah tone. These articles have a more realistic view of hypnosis:
  • This article gives a viewpoint and legal status (as of 2012) from a non-English speaking country. "Hypnose – underholdning eller behandling?" [Hypnosis - entertainment or treatment?], by I.H. Vandvik, Tidsskr Nor Laegeforen. 2012 Dec 11;132(23-24):2586. doi: 10.4045/tidsskr.12.1271. -
[Article in Norwegian - use an online translation site to easily convert into English]
Some quotes from the Vandvik article (via Bing Translator):
"By the use of hypnosis, it is important that the clinical approach is individually tailored to the patient's wants and needs. The method is therefore less suitable for double blind trials, and published works is still often based on residents publishing case reports."
"There is no doubt that we need more research on hypnotherapy, both in the form of randomized studies, and qualitative studies."
  • "Hypnosis today.", by Brendan L. Smith, Monitor on Psychology (a publication of the American Psychological Association), January 2011, Vol 42, No. 1, print version: page 50 -
Some quotes from the Smith article:
"Hypnosis works and the empirical support is unequivocal in that regard. It really does help people," says Michael Yapko, PhD, a psychologist and fellow of the American Society of Clinical Hypnosis. "But hypnosis isn’t a therapy in and of itself. Most people wouldn’t regard it that way."

"Joseph P. Green, PhD, a psychology professor at Ohio State University at Lima, has researched how hypnotic suggestions can produce distorted or false memories. He also found that people may believe hypnotically induced memories are more reliable, mirroring a mistaken cultural belief that hypnosis acts like a truth serum. Hypnosis is "on thin ice" when used to recover memories, as is the case with most other memory retrieval techniques, Green says."
"You can go anyplace on the weekend and get a hypnosis certification," Willmarth says. "You have thousands of lay hypnosis schools that are willing to train anyone who will pay the tuition."
Thank you, Wordreader (talk) 04:32, 19 August 2014 (UTC)
I'm looking at the APA's website, and what they say is "Hypnosis is a therapeutic technique in which clinicians make suggestions to individuals who have undergone a procedure designed to relax them and focus their minds." Indicating a reduced anxiety and stress, allowing for the beneficial effects (ie Hypnotherapy is just a "stress ball")Qwed117 (talk) 01:34, 5 March 2015 (UTC)

Photograph of the pregnant woman[edit]

I don't think this photo has any relevance here. There's no indication whatsoever that the woman was utilizing hypnosis at the moment her picture was taken or ever planned to in the future. It's merely a photograph of a random pregnant woman. Perhaps that's okay to illustrate a popular magazine article or a blog post, but not an encyclopedic entry.

These are at least photographs of people who are supposedly hypnotized. Perhaps you could pick one of them:

Thank you, Wordreader (talk) 04:47, 19 August 2014 (UTC)

  • Support removal of the picture of the pregnant woman for the reasons above. The issue of a proposed replacement image is a separate issue I am not going comment on other than to say that none of them seem to have anything to do with pregnancy or childbirth. Marteau (talk) 05:57, 19 August 2014 (UTC)
Removed. Marteau (talk) 14:43, 26 August 2014 (UTC)
I see that the photo of the random pregnant woman has been removed. Nice work! Marteau, the addition of a photo of a hypnotized person doesn't need to be one of a pregnant woman per se, does it? If you want to hold out for a hypnotized woman ready to give birth, you may wait quite a while. B^) At least the three referenced pictures are available on Wiki Commons to use now. Thank you, Wordreader (talk) 05:50, 10 September 2014 (UTC)

Adding to hypnotherapy[edit]

Hypnotherapy is a helpful adjunct having additive effects when treating psychological disorders such as these along with scientifically proven cognitive therapies. Hypnotherapy should not be used for repairing or refreshing memory, because hypnosis results in memory hardening which increases the confidence in false memories. [3] Bf1622 (talk) 00:25, 24 November 2014 (UTC)Bf1622

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New definition[edit]

Under characteristics two different definitions are provided. After a while the term was given a new definition. I feel as if the labeling "New Definition: Hypnosis" before presenting it is something that could be removed. Only because before the sub title is presented there is a short paragraph stating that the definition was revised by the Society For Hypnosis. You can just add the section under New Definition to under the "Definition" tab. The transition from the old definition to the new one would be smooth rather than starting a new section for the new definition after mentioning the change of definition prior to that. TJ3Rahming (talk) 21:56, 2 May 2016 (UTC)

Addition to Application section[edit]

Hypnosis has been used as a supplemental approach to cognitive behavioral therapy since as early as 1949. Hypnosis was defined in relation to classical conditioning; where the words of the therapist were the stimuli and the hypnosis would be the conditioned response. Some traditional cognitive behavioral therapy methods were based in classical conditioning. It would include inducing a relaxed state and introducing a feared stimuli. One way of inducing the relaxed state was through hypnosis.[4]HalimahMohammed (talk) 01:38, 3 May 2016 (UTC)

The memory section needs to be addressed. What does it mean to cause memory hardening? Elizareader (talk) 03:42, 9 May 2016 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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Hypnotism editors[edit]

Read the words I am typing. You are getting sleepy... sleepy... Now you are asleep. When I click "Save changes," you will wake up and edit the article to remove all pseudoscientific baloney. The page will be empty. Then you will write a balanced, neutral article that does not advocate hypnosis but rather describes it. That will be proof enough to convince anyone that hypnosis actually works. 2601:1C2:500:625A:C109:8CB2:E9D4:4252 (talk) 02:37, 21 October 2017 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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  1. ^ Dorfman, David; George, Mary Catherine; Schnur, Julie; Simpson, David M.; Davidson, George; Montgomery, Guy (July 2013). "Hypnosis for treatment of HIV neuropathic pain: A preliminary report". Pain Medicine. 14 (7). doi: Check |doi= value (help). 
  2. ^ Lynn, Steven Jay; Green, Joseph P.; Kirsch, Irving; Capafons, Antonio; Lilianfeld, Scott O; Laurence, Jean-Roch; Montgomery, Guy (October 2015). "Grounding hypnosis in science: The 'new' APA Division 30 definition of hypnosis as a step backward". American Journal of Clinical Hypnosis. 57 (4). doi: Check |doi= value (help). 
  3. ^ Novella, S. (Producer). (2007, July 11). The Skeptic's Guide to the Universe [Audio podcast].
  4. ^ Chapman, Robin (August 2005). Clinical Use of Hypnosis in Cognitive Behavior Therapy : A Practitioner's Casebook : A Practitioner's Casebook. Springer Publiching Company. p. 6.