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(Pause.) The initiative must be yours. You will never know unless you try the exercise. Now if you are in poor health, and have a physician, you had better continue going to him, because you still rely on that system of belief — but use these exercises as supplements to build up your own sense of inner health, and to protect you against any negative suggestions given by your doctor. Utilize the belief in physicians since you have it.
You may desire health, but believe implicitly in your state of poor health. You may desire spiritual understanding, while thinking that you are spiritually unworthy and opaque. (Pause.) When you set your longing against a present belief there is always conflict. Your belief will generate the proper feelings and imaginative endeavors characteristic of it. If you want to be healthy and continually contrast what you want with the present conviction in your poor health, then the belief itself, set up against the desire, will cause added difficulties. In such a case you seem to want the impossible. Desire and belief are not united but apart.
> For a certain amount of time I will momentarily suspend what I believe in this area, and willfully accept the belief I want. I will pretend that I am under hypnosis, with myself as hypnotist and subject. For that time desire and belief will be one. There will be no conflict because I do this willingly. For this period I will completely alter my old beliefs. Even though I sit quietly, in my mind I will act as if the belief I want were mine completely.
Let us give a simple example, using a positive belief instilled in childhood. An individual is told that he is comely, well-proportioned, and possesses a likeable personality. The idea takes hold. The person acts in line with this belief in all ways; but also a variety of subsidiary beliefs grow up about the main one.
Chiropractors, again, are hypnotists. Unfortunately they are trying to gain respectability in medical terms, and are therefore emphasizing the “scientific” aspects of their work, and playing down the intuitive elements and natural healing. The “quacks” end up with those who are hopeless, who realize the ineffectiveness of other belief systems, find them wanting, and have no place to go. Some of the “quacks” may be unscrupulous and dishonest, yet many of them possess an intuitive understanding, and can work “cures” through the instant alteration of belief. The medical profession is fond of saying that such individuals prevent patients from seeking proper treatment. The fact is that such patients no longer believe in the doctors’ system of belief, and so could not be helped by them.
The belief in personal worth draws about it the belief in the personal value of others, for they show their best faces to our fortunate friend. His life constantly reinforces this concept, and while he is peripherally aware that some people are “nicer” than others, his main intimate experience allows him to see the best in others and in himself. This becomes one of the strong frameworks through which he views existence.
In your terms, beliefs are accepted initially from the parents — this, as mentioned earlier, having to do with mammalian experience. (See the 619th session in Chapter Four.) The hypnotist then acts as a parent substitute. In cases of therapy, an individual is already frightened, and because of the beliefs in your civilization he looks not to himself but to an authority figure for help.
(10:10.) Even in primitive societies, witch doctors and other natural therapists have understood that the point of power is in the present, and they have utilized natural hypnosis as a method of helping other individuals to concentrate their own energy. All of the gestures, dances, and other procedures are shock treatments, startling the subject out of habitual reactions so that he or she is forced to focus upon the present moment. The resulting disorientation simply shakes current beliefs and dislodges set frameworks. The hypnotist, or witch doctor, or therapist, then immediately inserts the beliefs he thinks the subject needs.
In the medical field, as in no other, you are faced directly with the full impact of your beliefs, for doctors are not the healthiest, but the least healthy. They fall prey to the beliefs to which they so heartily subscribe. Their concentration is upon disease, not health.
If you do this faithfully, within a month you will find the new conditions materializing in your experience. Your neurological structure will respond automatically. The unconscious will be aroused, bringing its great powers to bear, bringing you the new results. Do not try to overdo this, to go through the entire day worrying about beliefs, for example. This can only cause you to contrast what you have with what you want. Forget the exercise when it is completed. You will find yourself with impulses that arrive in line with these newly inserted beliefs, and then it is up to you to act on these and not ignore them.
Dictation: Natural hypnosis is the acquiescence of the unconscious to conscious belief. In periods of concentrated focus, with all distractions cut out, the desired ideas are then implanted (in formal hypnosis). The same processes occur in normal life, however; areas of primary concentration then regulate your experience both biologically and mentally, and generate similar conditions.
There may be areas in which he realizes he is not adequate, yet because of his belief in his basic worth he will be able to accept these lacks as a part of himself without feeling threatened by them. He will be able to try to improve his condition without knocking himself down at the same time.
Now: In those terms he may or may not be as attractive, feature by feature, as some other individuals who believe, in fact, that they are unattractive. The belief in his own comeliness is so important that others will react to him in the same fashion. An individual can have great native beauty, for example, but this beauty is not apparent to others, or to the individual. The person does not believe that he or she possesses it, and mars the actual physical features so that the comeliness becomes literally invisible.
Your beliefs, then, are like hypnotic focuses. You reinforce them constantly through the normal inner talking in which you all indulge.
In each person’s experience, there are areas with which he or she is pleased. When you find yourself dissatisfied, however, question the orders you are giving in that particular arena of experience. The results do not seem, now, to follow your conscious desires. But you will find that they do follow your conscious beliefs, which may be quite different.
(Long pause at 10:03.) You can perform physical feats that you would consider impossible otherwise — all of this because you willingly suspend certain beliefs and allow yourself to accept others for the moment. Unfortunately, because of the pattern considered necessary, it is thought that the conscious mind is lulled and its activity suspended. Quite the contrary. It is focused, intensified, narrowed to a specific area, and all other stimuli are cut out.
Now: Your doctors are also the victims of their own belief system, in other words.
They constantly surround themselves with negative suggestions. When disease is seen as an invader, forced upon the integrity of the self for no reason, then the individual seems powerless and the conscious mind an adjunct. The patient is sometimes compelled to sacrifice one organ after another to his beliefs, and to the doctor’s.
(Pause.) Luckily you have other “underground” beliefs, in chiropractic, health foods, and even quacks. These all provide some other framework in which problems can be solved in matters of health. At least in these cases damaging drugs are not given, and the integrity of the body is not further maligned.
To a medical man all of this will seem like the sheerest heresy, because disease will always be seen as an objective thing in the body, to be objectively treated and removed. But a man who feels “that he has no heart” will not be saved by the most sophisticated heart transplant, unless first that belief is changed.
(11:02.) What does all of this mean to you in your daily life, and how can you utilize natural hypnosis to better your experience?
In those areas in which you are dissatisfied, you feel that you are powerless, or that your will is paralyzed, or that conditions continue despite what you think of as your intent. Yet if you pay attention to your own quite conscious thoughts, you will find that you are concentrating upon precisely those negative aspects that so appall you. You are hypnotizing yourself quite effectively and so reinforcing the situation. You may say, horrified, “What can I do? I am hypnotizing myself into my overweight condition (or my loneliness, or my poor health).” Yet in other facets of your life you may be hypnotizing yourself into wealth, accomplishment, satisfaction — and here you do not complain. The same issues are involved. The same principles are operating. In those positive life situations you are certain of your initiative. There is no doubt. Your beliefs become reality.
What should you do, then? First of all, you must realize that you are the hypnotist. You must seize the initiative here as you have in other positive aspects of your life. Whatever the superficial reasons for your beliefs, you must say:
At this point do not think of the future, but only of the present. If you are overweight, insert the weight that you think is ideal for you while you are following this exercise. Imagine that you are healthy if you have the belief that you are not. If you are lonely, believe that you are filled with the feeling of companionship instead. Realize that you are exerting your initiative to imagine such situations. Here there can be no comparison with your normal situation. Use visual data, or words — whatever is most natural to you. And again, no more than ten minutes is required.