"It seems to me that the therapist with an honest faith in the unbounded potential of the human organism in the struggle for survival can never do harm in pointing constantly to hope just around the corner."
- David Cheek, MD
This module is, by and large, about the way the unconscious manifests as physical experience. We ask you to consider what we can understand from physical symptoms and signals, how we can use natural phenomena and experience for therapeutic means, and what we can do to help people access the healing potential that is native to us all. Collectively, this kind of work is known as mind-body therapy, or mind-body medicine.
Successful mind-body work rests on a presupposition, nicely captured in the quote above: that we have an "honest faith in the unbounded potential" of people, and that we can find a way to demonstrate that to our clients.
I ask you now, as you work through this material, to consider seriously your own beliefs and understandings - of your own potential for wholeness and integration, and how that might translate to your work with your clients.
But first we revise...
This first section comprises revision of some essential concepts of hypnosis. The practical techniques are essential skills that you should be able to easily demonstrate as they will be integral components of your formal hypnosis work.
On a philosophical level, David believed that it was important to continue your conceptual learning alongside your practical learning. He was always reading different theories of trance, and hypnosis. He did not limit himself to the academics, practitioners and authors he agreed with. Some of the books in his hypnosis library were old, outdated authoritarian tomes, but he believed there could be knowledge gained from every source - and often wisdom.
In revisiting these books to update this Module, it has become clear to me that even the most modern texts share similarities with some of the earlier volumes on the subject of hypnosis. Our modern 'gurus' are often just re-imagining, for a new age, what the old masters knew.
There are different ways of speaking about what it is we do, but the foundation is the same. We have always encouraged our students to see beyond the personalities, the trademarks and 'patented processes', and look into the heart of the work.
In the following lecture we make some suggestions as to further reading you may wish to undertake which will assist you to develop a theoretical framework upon which your practical work will rest.