• Recent investigations have shown that the study of hypnotism throws much light on the nature of mind. The mind is even more susceptible to hypnotic suggestion than to opinion. Opinion itself often comes in the form of suggestion, and brings hypnotic influence with it. The so-called magnetism that accompanies the spoken word is often more effective than a strong argument. Thus the strong-minded sway the the weak; positive leaders draw negative minds about them and new dogmas are forced into fashion. As knowledge of the power of suggestion grows the dangers are greater. Hypnotism itself becomes a cult, in due course, and all kinds of occultism, spiritism, and the like, follow hard upon the new cult.
• . . . bread pills, for example, when given to a hypnotised subject with the suggestion that they are a powerful drug, produce the effects of a drug . . .
• What is hypnotism if not an induced direction of mind suggested by the hypnotist? When the subject is under control, and hypnotised, for example, to see a picture on the wall where there is none, the whole mind of the subject is absorbed in seeing the supposed picture, and there is no time or power to detect the deception. Many self-hypnotised people are equally at the mercy of some idea which is the pure invention of their fears.
• The hypnotist shapes the conduct of his subject when he has gained control of the subject's attention.
Power of Silence by Horatio. W. Dresser – 1895 Revised 1904
A few thoughts.
1. It bears the question whether placebo studies been significantly stringent with double blind methods to avoid the taint of the power of suggestion.
2. Have politicians, world leaders, writers, healers etc. exercised the power of suggestion on the weak and gullible. The 2012 Mayan calendar is a fair example. It had been written about since the 1980’s or sooner that it stops in 2012. We now know it rolls over in 2012. Much the same as we exchange our 2012 calendars for 2013 ones at the end of 2012. How much mis-information in the last 40 years has been due to the power of suggestion? Have the weak and gullible inadvertently spread these ideas in much the same way as rumours are spread?