Let’s touch upon the topics of auto-suggestion and trance induction.
Initiation Into Hermetics (further known as IIH) was first published in 1956 and was written by the great Magus Franz Bardon. He said when it comes to the consideration of the practical use of magic to attend to the study of the psychological functions of the cerebellum. From its Latin root “little brain”, the cerebellum is a region of the brain that plays an important role in motor control. It also deals with cognitive functions such as attention and language, and in regulating fear and pleasure responses. It receives input from sensory systems of the spinal cord and from other parts of the brain, and integrates these inputs to fine-tune motor activity. The little, or small brain is also most commonly associated with the subconscious.
There are a couple of quotes I wish to present from Bardon’s IIH. Both of which are from Step 2 titled ‘Auto-Suggestion or the Secret of the Subconscious’: “Research has proven that there is no single power in the universe, and consequently in human beings, that does not display its opposite. Therefor we may consider the subconscious to be the opposite of normal consciousness. Whatever our normal consciousness conceives or understands under the notion of thinking, feelings, volition, memory, reason, and intellect is reflected in our subconscious as the opposite effect. From a practical point of view, our subconscious can be considered as our opponent or adversary.” And, “In most cases the subconscious will almost always succeed in overcoming us or causing us to fail, especially when the will-power is undeveloped and weak. Should we, however, withdraw the notion of time and space when we impregnate the subconscious with a wish, then we will find that only the positive part of the subconscious is effective within us, that the upper or normal consciousness is coordinated with it, and hence our wish-impregnation should bring the expected success. This knowledge and possibility is of the greatest significance for magical development and must always be taken into consideration when we practice auto-suggestion.”
Émile Coué (Feb 26, 1857 – July 2, 1926) was a French psychologist who introduced the popular method of psychotherapy which utilized self-improvement based on optimistic auto-suggestion. In 1973 Baron Boris Ramon released a short, concise primer on Hypnosis titled The Magic Eye. In this primer Ramon revealed: “Émile Coué taught me that the surest method of communicating with one’s own sub-conscious is by what he called ‘gabbling'”. (Side note: gabbling can mean to talk rapidly and unintelligibly; utter meaningless sounds – contemplate the correlation to the barbarous words and names used in the practice of magical evocation). Moving back to the quote from Ramon, “Coué told his patients to take a piece of string with twenty-five or thirty knots tied into it. They then had to run their fingers down this piece of string, stopping at every knot and gabbling to themselves throughout: ‘Tout les jours, a tous points de vue, je vais de mieux en mieux’. The translation into English which he considered the most satisfactory is: ‘day by day, in every way, I get better and better’.”
When repeating commands, it’s not just the words that count: be sure to feel the truth of what you are saying. Imagine or visualize that what you are saying is already true, so that the statements are affirming reality.
For beginners to feel effect, this activity is generally encouraged on the precipice of sleep when relaxed in bed, and then to enter sleep after performing it. If no string is available, it’s of course possible to use the fingers effectively by pressing on each fingertip as you repeat the suggestion as to program it into the nervous system. We can also easily draw the correlation of auto-suggestion/self-programming with many mystical and religious practices which utilize tools such as prayer beads, or knotted ropes.
The word choices used when doing self-programming and self-hypnosis are vitally important. It may do well to brush up on which words to avoid using and to familiarize yourself with the subject of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP). The suggestions and commands should be in present-tense. For example if ridding oneself of a bad habit, let’s use smoking, the words chosen would be “I am a non-smoker”, rather than “I will stop smoking”.
It’s worth noting of course that this magic relates to the self, removing disharmony, improving health, developing abilities and new behaviors, not magic acting physically; don’t expect to use these techniques to obtain a new car, or finally find your hand in that of your dream spouse… though these techniques could be used to manifest the reality of those ideas by bringing you closer to being receptive to them.
Since I offered the beginners technique encouraged on the precipice of sleep – let’s quickly look at trance induction for planting suggestions.
Most common to hypnotic inductions is the process of “Progressive Relaxation” (to bring awareness to various parts of the body and then to soothe them and give them permission to relax). For example if familiar with Lucid Dreaming one of the methods of enabling ‘Sleep Paralysis’ is to lay flat on the back, to focus on breathing, and to tense areas of the body and then relax each muscle group – starting from the toes up to the head. Finally all tension is released and an altered state is induced.
Here’s an easy method for self-hypnosis induction:
– Sit comfortably in a chair with your back supported.
– Focus your attention (without strain) on a spot somewhere opposite to you above eye-level.
– Inhale and exhale deeply and slowly – preferably lifting the tongue to the roof of the mouth and inhaling deeply through the nose, then exhaling deeply through the mouth. (Do this several times, each time noticing how you are becoming more and more relaxed).
– On about the fourth deep breath while inhaling hold the breath for a count of 4 as you count backwards.
– Close your eyes, exhale and relax – feel yourself drifting into a deep, sound hypnotic rest.
– Count down from 30 to 1, use a visualization method you prefer; from taking a step down a winding staircase for each number – each step feeling more and more relaxed, or imagine a television screen with a countdown signal, or a blackboard with its numbers being erased and replaced with a lesser number in the countdown.
– At last, to bring yourself up from a trance state, count forward from 1 to 3, telling yourself that as you count up you become wide awake.
(A fantastic short self-hypnosis relaxation technique video is available here by Kayla Garnet Rose – do check it out.)
There are many variances to this very simple induction. It’s worth noting that the simplicity is key – that hypnosis is not deceptive, but a permissively entered state. When you are doing self-hypnosis you must immerse yourself and are confined to the limitations you set upon yourself. When you learn to take yourself into a deep relaxed trance state you can introduce some suggestions to the practice. For example you can create a magic sigil, or write your suggestion on a cue card or sheet of paper and place it on the wall above eye-level as your focal point. Then when you enter hypnosis instead of the countdown or visualizations, you bring up the sigil to fire it, or imagine you are embodying/carrying out your suggestion. When finished, bring yourself up from trance and feel wide awake, refreshed and energized.