Sunday, October 17, 2010

Significance of Hypnotism

An intelligent consideration of the phenomena of hypnotism will show us that what we call the hypnotic state is the normal state of the subjective mind. It always conceives of itself in accordance with some suggestion conveyed to it, either consciously or unconsciously to the mode of the objective mind which governs it, and it gives rise to corresponding external results.
The abnormal nature of the conditions induced by experimental hypnotism is in the removal of the control held by the individual's own objective mind over his subjective mind and the substitution of some other control for it, and thus we may say that the normal characteristic of the subjective mind is its perpetual action in accordance with some sort of suggestion. It becomes therefore a question of the highest importance to determine in every case what the nature of the suggestion shall be and from what source it shall proceed; but before considering the sources of suggestion we must realise more fully the place taken by subjective mind in the order of Nature.
The Edinburgh Lectures on Mental Science by Thomas Troward
From a lecture originally given by Judge Troward in 1904 in the Queen Street Hall, Edinburgh.

The philosopher William James (1842 – 1910) characterized Troward’s Edinburgh Lectures on Mental Science as "far and away the ablest statement of philosophy I have met, beautiful in its sustained clearness of thought and style, a really classic statement."

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