Positive Thinking Has Tremendous Benefits

By: Ron Bradley

We’ve all heard about the pessimist / optimist test of “is the glass half full or half empty.” Don’t be so concerned with the glass, be more concerned about how positive thinking has tremendous benefits. These benefits positively affect your attitude, relationships, career, immune system and overall mental and physical health. In short, life can be better using the power of positive thinking. But there may be a bit of work to make it happen.

Especially now in our push button, instant gratification society, impatience and an ‘I want it now  attitude’ prevents most people from doing what has always been necessary for any type of healthy, positive change in life. In a word it’s application. Some people think of it as doing the necessary work to get the results you desire. However, it doesn’t have to be a struggling challenge nor take lots of time. The beauty of creating a positive attitude is it’s:

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  • Fun
  • Natural
  • Safe
  • Immediately accessible
  • Quicker than you think

 

The fastest way to start creating a positive attitude is to take short amounts of time in a day to step back and just see things from a different view. Albert Einstein is quoted as saying, “When you change the way you look at something, what you look at changes.” In a word that’s perception. What’s great is that we have the ability to interact with how we perceive situations, people and all areas of our life. Meditation is a great way to create a more positive way of thinking. And there are more ways available too. Visualization, hypnosis, yoga and even eating healthy all lend to feeling and thinking more positive.

 

Positive Thinking Has Tremendous Benefits

 

Indeed, some studies show that personality traits like optimism and pessimism can affect many areas of your health and well-being. The positive thinking that typically comes with optimism is a key part of effective stress management. And effective stress management is associated with many health benefits.

Positive thinking doesn’t mean that you keep your head in the sand and ignore life’s less pleasant situations. Positive thinking just means that you approach the unpleasantness in a more positive and productive way. You think the best is going to happen, not the worst.

 

Positive thinking has tremendous benefits and the bottom line is, nothing is going to get better with a bad attitude and thinking negatively. Even the real challenges and worse situations we may experience are going to happen, but what happens after that is going to matter as to the way we think. There is power in thoughts. All results and outcomes had to start as thoughts.

What about you? Do you… or are you ready to reap the benefits of positive thinking?

 

Mangoes: “The King of the Fruits”

Mangoes: “The King of the Fruits”Mangoes are one of the most popular and nutritionally rich fruits in the world and are often referred to as “The King of the Fruits”. They are an amazing source of vitamins A, C, E, and B-complex as well as health promoting flavonoids such as beta-carotene and alpha-carotene.Mangoes image

Mangoes are a powerful anti-cancer food and are specifically known to help prevent lung, breast, colon, prostate, blood, and oral cancers. They are also highly beneficial in the prevention of strokes, heart disease, arthritis, cognitive disorders, respiratory diseases, and kidney disease. They can help to alkalize the whole body by helping to flush out toxic acids and rebuild the alkali reserves in the body. Packed with enzymes, Mangoes are a prebiotic food, meaning they contain compounds that stimulate and feed the good bacteria in the intestines which greatly aids in digestion and assimilation.

Mangoes contain a significant amount of pyridoxine (B-6) which is vital for the synthesis of serotonin and dopamine in the brain. Pyridoxine is also essential in maintaining hormonal balance and proper immune function as well as for helping the body break down sugars, fats and proteins. They are thought to help prevent insomnia and provide for a better night’s sleep. In some countries mangoes are eaten right before bed as a natural sleep aid. Mangoes are known to help lower LDL (bad) cholesterol due to its significant fiber, pectin, and vitamin C content.

Mangoes are also excellent for promoting good eyesight and helping to prevent night blindness and dry eyes. They are also wonderful for skin health and can be used both internally and externally to help clear clogged pores, eliminate pimples, and add a natural glow to the skin. They are one of the world’s most versatile fruits and can be used in both sweet and savory recipes. Consider using mangoes in your smoothie, salads, salsa, avocado, and vegetable dishes. Spices also pair well with mango.  Try experimenting with cinnamon, curry, cloves, and chili pepper to boost the flavor and nutrition of your meals.

Start or end your day with a simple but delicious mango pudding. Blend 2-4 ripe mangoes (peel and pit removed) in a blender or food processor until creamy and smooth.

Pour into a bowl and top with fresh berries. images healthy eating berries5There are several varieties available in supermarkets throughout the year including Tommy Atkins, Kent, Yellow, Ataulfo, Keitt, and Champagne. Some are sweet and creamy while others are juicy and bright. Experiment with finding new ways to add mangoes into your diet. Your body will love you for it.

5 Benefits of Drinking Alkaline Water

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Change your water and change your health!

Improve your health, supercharge your immune system, and fight the aging process with antioxidant-rich alkaline water.

Toxins are the number one cause of aging. They are often a result of poor diet, pollution, and stress. Toxins can build up in your body causing cell damage that leads to premature aging. The best way to fight toxins and detoxify your body is with antioxidants. And it’s as easy as drinking antioxidant-rich alkaline water.

Those that are advocates of alkaline water believe that drinking water that is alkaline will help neutralize acid in the bloodstream, leading to increased oxygen levels as well as increased energy and metabolism. Alkalinity acidic scale

  1. DETOXIFY

Detoxify your body remove toxins accumulated in your body from your environment, prescription drugs, un-natural foods and from the “normal” process of aging. Acid wastes collected in the body can lead to more serious health conditions. Drinking alkaline water daily neutralizes the acidity and washes acid waste products from cells and tissues.

  1. HYDRATE

Alkaline Water hydrates your body; this is basic to maintain or regain optimum health. During ionization your alkaline water filter forms your water into micro clusters that are more easily absorbed at the cellular levels thus “super hydrating” your body.

  1. OXYGENATE / ANTIOXIDANTS

Alkaline water acts as an antioxidant, scavenging for and neutralizing harmful free radicals. Because alkaline water has the ability to give up electrons, it can effectively neutralize and block free-radical damage to the body. Ionized alkaline water seeks out free radicals and converts them into oxygen which your body can use for energy production and tissue oxygenation. Cancer and most other illnesses cannot survive in an oxygenated, alkaline environment.

  1. ALKALIZE YOUR BODY’S pH

Alkaline water helps balance the body’s pH, which tends to be acidic because of our high acid food diet, stress and exposure to environmental toxins such as smog. Alkalize your body pH from acidic to alkaline pH, because cancer and many other illnesses cannot live in alkaline environments. Alkaline is the “normal” state of healthy persons.

 

  1. ENHANCE YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM

Enhance your immune system to maximize your body’s ability to fight off disease and heal itself.

Hypnotherapy Opens Mind to Healthy Changes

Kelly Moyer , Staff Reporter The Reflector

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Granted, it’s only been about 18 hours, but I think the hypnosis is working.

You see, most mornings, I wake up begging my two husky pups for a 20-minute reprieve before they jump on my head and start licking my face. This morning, however, I woke up feeling refreshed, let the dogs out and found myself in the kitchen, making a gigantic salad for lunch.

That in itself isn’t too stunning, but then, a few hours later, I was at work, reaching for my coffee, when I realized: Oh, my goodness. I forgot to stop for coffee this morning! This doesn’t happen. I have a routine. I drop the kid at school, swing around the block, get a cup of Stump town’s finest (and usually a scone for good measure), and then head for the highway. But this morning I dropped the kid and hopped on I-205 north. No coffee! No scone! I did, however, have a banana and two tiny tangelos with me. And I don’t remember bringing fruit out of the house. See? The hypnosis, designed to help me make healthier food choices, is working.

It all started with a story idea. I had always been interested in hypnotherapy – had known people who lost weight or quit smoking or had pain-free births through hypnosis – and I wondered if hypnosis could help me conquer some unhealthy eating habits. I had even listened to some pre-recorded hypnotic videos on YouTube, but I had never actually visited an actual hypnotherapist.

Over the past few months, however, I began to notice that Battle Ground seems to have a good number of hypnotherapists: There are three different therapists located on Main Street alone. I knew that we had a health-focused section coming up in The Reflector, and thought now was the perfect time to experience hypnosis and write an article about its various health benefits. I pitched the idea to my editor and made a few calls. Before I knew it, I was reclining on a cozy leather chair in hypnotherapist David Hill’s Battle Ground office, getting ready for my first session.

“I’m going to bore your conscious mind,” Hill told me before I relaxed into the chair. “We want to get your conscious filter out of the way.”

Hill’s voice was melodic, the chair was super comfortable and my mind, normally spinning at full speed with deadlines and story ideas and parenting stuff and plans for the upcoming weekend, finally started to calm down. I remember concentrating on my breathing and that there was a staircase and a garden with a stream running through it, but I think I must have fallen asleep during our session. When I came out of the hypnotic trance, I felt like I’d been in the chair for maybe 15 or 20 minutes, but Hill said it was more like 45 minutes.

“You went into deep alpha,” Hill told me. “That’s very good.”

Going into deep alpha basically means that I had a bit of a nap. My conscious mind went away for 45 minutes, giving Hill access to my subconscious mind. The subconscious is where the magic happens, where Hill’s suggestions – eat smaller portions, reach for nutrient-rich foods like veggies, nuts and seeds, drink more water and get more exercise – could find a foothold.

images healthy eating defined

I only had one session, and it wasn’t as long as Hill’s regular hypnosis sessions, which often last 90 minutes to two hours, but I still feel like the hypnosis affected my subconscious thoughts, at least for one day.

Hill, a certified counselor and hypnotherapist who has been practicing since the 1980s, says most clients tend to need more than one session.

“Some do have a successful outcome with one session, but it all depends on the individual,” Hill says. “Most need more than one session. Some need five or six, or more. It really just depends on the situation.”

Will I go back? Probably, I’ve been trying to make healthier decisions most of my life, but there’s always been something holding me back – that “devil on my shoulder” that tells me to reach for the doughnuts before broccoli, and convinces me that watching a movie on the couch is way more fun than going to yoga class. I think hypnotherapy might be the “thing” that finally conquers that shoulder devil.

So what is hypnosis, exactly?

Here’s how the Mayo Clinic describes it: “Hypnotherapy is a trance-like state in which you have heightened focus and concentration. Hypnosis is usually done with the help of a therapist using verbal repetition and mental images. Hypnosis can be used to help you gain control over undesired behaviors or to help you cope better with anxiety or pain.”

Many people associate hypnosis with magic shows, carnival acts or old Vincent Price movies, but hypnosis has been accepted as a legitimate health therapy for decades. In fact, the National Institutes of Health studied the therapy and found that hypnosis may be useful for treating chronic pain, reducing fear and anxiety, improving the quality of life for cancer patients and controlling bleeding during surgical and dental procedures.

The three Battle Ground hypnotherapists that contributed to this article – Hill, along with Debbie DeFreece and Connie Osborne – all say that hypnotherapy tends to be “a last resort” for many of their clients.

“Typically, people don’t go to see a hypnotherapist until they’ve tried everything else,” says DeFreece, of Absolutra Hypnotherapy in Old Town Battle Ground. “There have been misconceptions about hypnosis, mainly, I believe, because people think about the stage hypnosis … but hypnotherapy can help with so many things. I’ve seen that it’s effective for weight loss, anxiety, depression, nail biting, sports enhancement, test taking … really; it helps with anything that you want to change. Hypnosis gets to the root of why that change hasn’t been happening for someone.”

Hill knows exactly what it’s like to find hypnotherapy as “a last resort.” As a young man, Hill had crashed his car and suffered from intense neck pain. He tried everything short of surgery for the better part of a decade before finding a hypnotherapist in Philadelphia, PA, who worked with clients seeking pain relief.

“I tried everything,” Hill says. “I went to neurosurgeons, chiropractors … I even tried Rolfing.”

After his sessions with a hypnotherapist left him pain free for the first time in 10 years, Hill knew he had found his calling. He became a certified counselor and hypnotherapist and has been practicing in Washington State since the late 1980s. He’s been practicing out of his Battle Ground Hypnotherapy office for the past seven years. In that time, he’s treated clients for a range of issues, including weight management, stress relief, smoking cessation and addiction problems, but the majority of his clients are seeking pain relief.

“I’m a last resort for most people,” Hill says. “Most of my clients have chronic pain they’ve been to multiple doctors, have had surgeries and are on pain medications. Most of them come to me after they’ve tried everything else.”

Hill says many of his clients are shocked by how much better they feel after just one hypnosis session. Although it typically takes five or more sessions to become pain free, Hill says many clients feel vast improvements after the first session.

Other hypnotherapists report similarly effective results with their clients.

Connie Osborne, a certified hypnotherapist and mental health counselor, who works out of her  aNewYouHypnosis business in Old Town Battle Ground, says she finds hypnosis to be extremely effective for helping clients improve their overall health through weight management and stress relief.

“I worked with a hypnotherapist on my weight issues and lost about 40 pounds,” Osborne says. “I’ve been able to keep it off through hypnosis. Now I do a 12-week weight management program for my clients and it’s been very successful. My clients even took weight off during the holidays.”

Osborne says she came to hypnosis through her training as a mental health counselor.

“I had worked as a school counselor and was working with at-risk college students who were low income and maybe had a disability or were first-generation college students,” Osborne says. “I would use every tool in my toolbox to help these students, but there were some who just couldn’t seem to get over the hump. … Hypnosis was the one tool I had that could help them.”

DeFreece, who runs the Absolutra Hypnotherapy & NLP Center in downtown Battle Ground, discovered hypnosis about 15 years ago. At that time, DeFreece worked a high-stress job, running a marketing company that helped big-name clients like Hewlett Packard.

“I was under pretty high stress. My husband encouraged me to see a hypnotherapist, to work through the stress and figure out why I wasn’t sleeping well at night,” DeFreece recalls. “So I found a hypnotherapist … and it was life changing for me. I loved it. And I decided that I wanted to do something new for my life.”

Switching from the high-stress world of marketing to healing wasn’t easy, but DeFreece says she loves helping clients find their way through major life changes.

“Hypnosis helps people change their perception about things,” DeFreece says. “And some people are nervous. They don’t want to look at things that have caused them pain in the past, to bring up those painful emotions, but I tell them that it doesn’t have to be painful. In hypnotherapy we can look at a situation and reframe it in a way that feels good. You can move on, move away from the painful feelings and make the change you want to make.”

REPOST: Pain, poor sleep: Relationship goes both ways

Dr. Michael Steuer

Difficulty of achieving a good night’s sleep is not uncommon amongst patients who have just recently undergone surgery. Read the article below to know just how close and complex the relationship between pain and poor sleep can be.

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The connection between sleep problems and pain is a complicated one — and goes both ways, new research suggests. |
Image source: usatoday.com

Anyone who has ever struggled for sleep while recovering from injury or surgery knows that pain can ruin a good night’s rest. People who suffer from chronic pain know it all too well.

But fewer people may know that the relationship between sleep and pain seems to go both ways.

“People who have pain have more sleep problems, but people who have sleep problems also have more pain,” says Daniel Clauw, a rheumatologist who directs a chronic pain and fatigue research center at the University of Michigan.

The sleep…

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Clinical, Spiritual or Stage Hypnosis?

These are accurate definitions of the different genres of hypnosis. I enjoyed reading this blog.

The Hypno Lounge

What’s the difference? Isn’t it all Hypnosis?

Well, yes …. and no….. Clinical Hypnotherapy is just that… Therapy. It is usually related to an ailment such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Migraine or an anxiety or an unwanted behaviour, such as smoking or weight issues and has a therapeutic outcome. A client can also be induced into a very deep trance state which enables surgery and is being used more as a drug free alternative in childbirth.

Spiritual Hypnotherapy can also have a therapeutic outcome, especially if a client’s current symptoms can be relieved by past life or lives between lives regression. Is it real? Is it a metaphor? For some people it is very real and the life described has been authenticated.  A search on YouTube will enable you to watch some Past Life documentaries, where children have been able to describe their previous lives with uncanny accuracy.

Stage…

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The Secret life of Dreams…

By Zoilita Grant Image Zolita  Grant

Every night while we are sleeping, our dreams are having their own secret life. Dreams serve many functions which support our waking lives: they allow our mind to sort and file data that has been acquired during the day and to release any emotional tension that has not been processed. Dreams are doorways to the subconscious and help us to see how we really feel about our lives. Our dreams tell us the truth about ourselves. They are an expression of our true sense of our self.

The average adult dreams from three to five times during eight hours of sleep. The dreams occur roughly every 90 to 100 minutes and last from 5 to 30 minutes each.

During the dream state, the pathways that carry nerve impulses from the brain to the muscles are blocked. Therefore, the body cannot move while in a dream state. At the same time, the cerebral cortex—the part of the brain involved in higher functions—is extremely active. It is known that the cortex is stimulated by neurons that carry impulses from the brain stem. There is a lot of emotional content in our dreams. Unresolved conflicts, concerns about performance, and feelings about people and situations are played out in the dream world.

Dreaming seems to provide a means of releasing tension and anxieties that we unconsciously suppress during our waking lives.  It is much healthier to express the content of the dreams rather than to repress them. In the process of becoming whole, dreams of violence, murder, even death, are all ways in which our subconscious is allowing a milieu of thoughts, feelings and impressions to escape our busy minds. Dreams give us release from our inner conflicts and insight into our personal potential and promise. Dreaming is a process and the dream is a creation produced by our minds to create harmony in our lives.

During our waking life we are always receiving clues and insights from our Inner Self, but we are usually too busy to pay attention. We are too busy, too distracted–too caught in our lives– to hear important messages that come from inside. In our conscious waking life we are not always open to the messages. We may also be unwilling to look at what is really happening with our lives. It is during the dream state that this information is often revealed.

Dreams are also direct routes into our Higher Consciousness/Inner Selves. Dreams may contain the most direct spiritual teaching we can receive. Every dream we have relates directly to some facet of our life. In one sense the dream world is as real as waking, and we are not consciously editing the information. It comes through whether we like it or not, whether we invite it or not. It is important to remember our being is more than just a physical body.

Our being contains our spiritual self—our truth, our souls. Our dream world can frequently reveal this to us better than our waking life. Our lives contain lessons for our souls and in some senses the dream world can provide learning experiences that more directly involve our souls. This has a lot to do with the integration of the various aspects of ourselves. Sometimes these parts are cut off from our waking consciousness. By making the separate parts of ourselves one, dreams become an essential step in the process of our becoming whole, healthy people.

Tips for Remembering Dreams…

  • Go to bed early… Don’t get overtired before going to sleep.
  • Review and process your day—clear your mind.
  • Keep a Dreamwork journal and writing materials by your bed.
  • Lie still when you first wake up, reviewing your dreams.
  • Record everything you remember, including how you felt.
  • Use your intuition to relate your dreams to your life.
  • Discuss your dreams with someone else. In talking about the dream you will remember new things.

 

Zoilita Grant MS CCHt has been studying dreams since she was a child. She has had several dreams that have been major influences on her own life. Zoilita produces a line of books and CDs that are designed for personal transformation including an interactive Dreamwork journal and dream programming CD. You can find more about her work at www.selfhealing.com  www.coloradohypnotherapy.com www.selfhealingshop.com

Gastric band hypnotherapy

There is much talk about this new procedure and how it compares to the surgical Gastric Bypass. I found this article very interesting as it takes you through each step of the procedure what happens before, during, and after.

hypnoclinician

This article is borrowed from: http://www.hypnotherapy-directory.org.uk/articles/gastric-band.html Heart disease, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes are to name but a few of the conditions which see an increased risk from obesity and being overweight. As the most overweight country currently in Europe, Britain is now looking to alternative methods of weight-loss after experiencing little success with traditional methods such as dieting, healthy eating and exercise. Recently public interest for a procedure known as ‘gastric band’ surgery has increased ten fold after a number of celebrity admissions and much media coverage. The surgery involves placing a restrictive device around the upper part of the stomach which will create a pouch only capable of holding a certain amount of food. This reduced space where food will now go after a meal will fill far more rapidly than the entirety of the stomach, meaning the feeling of fullness will happen much more quickly…

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Ancient Egypt the Roots of Hypnosis

By David Reeves

imhotep imageWhen we look back into ancient history, we find that the trance like state that we call Hypnosis has been used for thousands of years. In fact, from the study of primitive peoples’ religious and healing ceremonies there exists the elements essential to place people into a hypnotic state. By rhythmic chanting, monotonous drum beats, together with strained fixations of the eyes, the village shaman or priest is able to induce catalepsy of the body. This helps to give the shaman the appearance of having magical and mystical powers given to them by the gods. Today we call it suggestion therapy.

Sleep Temple or Dream Temple Therapy

The use of suggestion therapy goes back much further than Mesmer. If Mesmer were to be called the Father of Hypnosis, then the great, great —- grandfather of Hypnosis could be the ancient Egyptian priest, Imhotep. (I-em-hotep, he comes in peace) Hypnosis, suggestion therapy can be traced back over 4000 years to ancient Egypt.

The Egyptians used healing sanctuaries to heal people with all sorts of problems, both physical and mental, most of which today would be classified as psychological problems. These healing sanctuaries were called “Sleep or Dream Temples.” In these temples, the sick person was put into a trance like sleep; priests and priestesses then interpreted the person’s dreams to gain knowledge about the illnesses and to find a cure for the illnesses.

The tradition of temple sleep dates back to the time of Imhotep. The ancient Egyptians worshiped the priest Imhotep and dedicated Sleep Temples to him; he is the earliest known physician. He was the physician vizier, architect and priest, to the pharaoh Zoser (2650 – 2590 B.C.). Imhotep built the step pyramid, which is the first pyramid. In recent times Imhotep has become a Hollywood star; the name of Imhotep was used for the priest who became the Mummy in the latest film “The Mummy”.                                                                                                          Egyptian-bed-8

Temple sleep was used as a psycho-therapeutic tool; the temples of Imhotep were well attended by people looking for psychological help. Under the influence of incantation and the performance of religious rituals, sick people were prepared psychologically for suggestion therapy; they were put in a “hypnotic state.” Before falling asleep they were influenced by suggestions, in the hope of provoking dreams sent by the gods. Today in some parts of the Middle East and Africa you can still encounter shrine sleep. Sleep Temples were and are used for the mentally ill, as a place where priests interpret the sick person’s dreams. Thus, by the use of suggestion, (and the help of the god) the priests appear to cast out bad spirits from the mind and body of the sick.

In Greece, Sleep Temples were renowned as places of great healing and were dedicated to the healing god Æsclepius. Æsculapius took over the role of Imhotep. Sleep therapy survived in the temples of Æsculapius, which were constructed by the Greeks in the 5th and 4th centuries BC.

Æsclepius (also spelt: Asclepios, Æsclepius, Æsculapius, Æsclepius) was a healer, his mythical roots going back in to the second millennium BC, he became a demi-god. Over time he evolved into a temple god in his own right. The temples in his honor were temples of healing dreams. His daughters were Hygea and Panacea. A Klínè was a sacred place or a sacred skin set out around the temple, where the sick person reclined to enter the dream state. From these names we have derived the words, Panacea, Hygiene and Clinic. At the height of the cult’s power, there were 420 temples, spread across the ancient Greek empire.

Healing would take place while the person being cured was in a deep trance like sleep. The god Æsculapius could perform miraculous cures in the dreams. This sleep would come about by the power of the priests, who used chanting and magical spells to put the patient into a trance. This trance state was known as incubation; incubation is derived from the Latin, in (on) cubare (to lie down). A person could be kept in this state for up to three days, during which time the priests using suggestions would help the person, through their dreams, to make contact with the god, thus helping them to obtain a cure for their illness. The temples were a place of spirits, and mysterious powers, a place to find mental and physical healing.                                                                                              ancient egyptian temple bodua_picture024

People looking for a cure or an insight to their problems were called Seekers. A Seeker had something on their mind, an ailment, an issue, and an inner quest to discover themselves. They came to seek an insight into their problems, to contact the healing god, to get a new vision that would heal, guide, or provide comfort. The path to the Temple was lined with huge the steles made of marble, on which were carved inscriptions, describing all the miracle cures, and the miraculous healing that had taken place in the Temple.

It was claimed that people were cured of incurable diseases; the lame were able to walk again, people who were blind could see again. They were cured by the sole supernatural healing power of the divine dream.

This was a power that the priests knew from ancient times. The priests, who used secret rituals, incantations and traditions for therapeutic purposes, preserved this power; they were part priest, part physician, and part shaman. They were skilled in the interpretation of dreams; they were also skilled in the use of medicinal herbs. There were also attendants/caretakers of the temples, who had their own sacrifices and ritual activities to perform. They would council new seekers, also see to it that they were cleansed and purified. They were skilled practitioners and offered advice on how to seek interpretations of dreams.

The Seeker did not just go in to the temple; they had to wait for the right time to come. Before being allowed to enter the temple, and before the healing dreams could occur, they first had to learn the rituals and perform the rites of purification; they had to cleanse the body, mind and soul. They would meditate, fast, take hot baths, and make a sacrifice to the god. They looked for signs in their dreams. When the signs and omens looked right and they had cleansed the body, mind and soul, only then were they allowed to enter the main part of the temple. The main part of the temple had a large open floor area, with sacred alcoves to the sides, where the seekers could unroll their sacred skin, their Klínè; they would then sleep and dream of god Æsclepius healing them.

A good dream would be one in which the god would cure the wound by touching it. Once the person woke from their sleep, the attendant would spend time with them, reviewing any visitations from god, helping to explore the dream and secure the insights appropriate to that seeker at their stage of development. The dreams of the seeker contained the seeds of their own healing. The attendant’s job was simply to elicit the vision of the god and aid the seeker in making sense of their personal dream story. Through incubation, the seeker was to awaken to his real self and in so doing regenerate himself physically, mentally and spiritually. Today we recognize a lot of what went on in the Temples as suggestion therapy.

Over time the priests developed a greater understanding of herbs and their use. They started to move away from the sole use of dream interpretation and suggestion therapy, using their growing knowledge of herbs; they started to develop unguents, tinctures and medicines. While dreams in their early forms involved a direct visit from the god, over time the dreams became more metaphoric, the dream became symbolic of the person’s problems. The attendants became dream interpreters, from these interpretations the priests would make up prescriptions for medicines. Over the past 4000 years, the Sleep Temple, the Priest and Dream Sleep, have slowly evolved in to what has become modern Doctors, hospitals and medicine.

The ancient Hebrews used meditation with chanting, breathing exercises and fixation on the Hebrew letters of the alphabet that spelled their name for God, to induce an ecstasy state called Kavanah. (These ritualistic practices are very similar to Auto-hypnosis). In the Talmud, Kavanah implies relaxation, concentration, correct attention (motivation). People such as fire-walkers, and priests who used the religious practice of laying on of hands to make people faint onto the floor, are using Auto-hypnosis to bring about an altered state of consciousness by the use of suggestion and expectation.

The Romans also adopted the use of healing sleep/Incubation Temples throughout their Empire. The Romans dedicated their Sleep Temples to the god Apollo – Æsclepius. Sleep Temples even got as far as Britain. Even now in the UK, you can visit a Roman archaeological site at Lydney Park, Lydney, Gloucestershire, where you can see the remains of a Sleep Temple. Sir Mortimer Wheeler excavated the Lydney Temple complex in 1928. One of Sir Mortimer’s assistants was the young Professor J.R.R.Tolkein, who went on to write “Lord of the Rings”; it has been suggested that he based Middle Earth on the landscape surrounding the Temple.

Post-Script: Maybe today’s Hypnotherapists consulting rooms can be viewed as the modern equivalent of the Sleep Temples, the couch a Klínè? But remember, “leave the healing god stuff, to a higher being.”

David Reeves, works as a Hypnoanalyst and Stress Management consultant in Swindon and Harley Street London, and the USA. He has trained in Battle Field Stress Disorders, and is a member of the International Stress Management Association (UK), The International Association of Hypnoanalysts (UK), The National Register of Advanced Hypnotherapists (UK), The International Society for Professional Hypnosis (USA, Incorporated under the laws of State of New York), The National Guild of Hypnotists, (USA) The European Therapy Studies Institute, and The Hypnothink Foundation.