The Origins Of Hypnotherapy - Greek Mythology
Who would have known that hypnotherapy dates back to the Ancient Greek Times, did you?…
Well, that be said — nearly everything has its roots set in the Ancient Greeks civilization. They were gifted with discovering all sorts of wonders and theories that we still reference today.
There was, of course, the famous Philosophers, Plato and Socrates, who set the path to learning and teaching about the power of the human mind. How our interactions with each other, as well as our own thought processes can lead to all kinds of consequences.
So then how was it that hypnotherapy had been considered or practiced by the Ancient Greeks over 3000 years ago, as well?
Especially, when it wasn’t properly practiced again till the 1840s by a Scottish surgeon named James Braid. He gave the cognitive therapy the name ‘hypnotherapy,’ but it was forgotten after his death and reinstated again in the 1950s by Dave Elman.
James Braid came up with the name during the early 19th century, which also celebrated the arts movement called the Renaissance. Artists, as well as the new scientists, therapists and surgeons at the time were studying deep into the discoveries of the ancient Romans and Greeks. Colonialism and voyaging meant the discovery of new cultures and new historical artifacts, such as the famous friezes from the Parthenon housed in the British Museum.
The Victorians also discovered tales from Greek mythology, which told great moral stories through characters that represented one or more of their many Gods. The origins of hypnosis began with one such tale. It involves the tale of one God, Hypnos, and his sons, one being Morpheus.
As irony has it the two words: ‘morphine’ and ‘hypnosis’ originated from these two characters. Who would have thought that the Ancient Greeks inspired us with the name of the most addictive substance on the planet, which induces the highest form of chemical pain relief. Then paired it with the cognitive therapy that does the same thing, but more healthily. In fact, the latter can be used as a therapy to overcome this addiction, as well as provide a healthier alternative to pain relief.
If you would like to find out more about how the Ancient Greeks practiced hypnotherapy over 2000 years ago, then read on.
The Tale of Morpheus and Hypnos
“Hypnos” is the Ancient Greek word for sleep, it is still used today and referred to as ‘ypnos.’ However, in Ancient Greek Times they associated the phenomenon of sleep as a God. He was the twin brother of Thanatos (God of Death), son of Nyx (God of Night) and father to Morpheus (One God of Dreams). Hypnos was considered traditionally at the time to live in a land of perpetual darkness and mist.
In Ancient Greek Mythology, Hypnos and his twin brother were Gods of the underworld and followed Hades. Even so, he was considered to be a calm and gentle God who helped humans and gods in need. Hypnos and his sons who were the Gods of Dreams would surround chief Gods described to be lying back on a couch. One of whom present was Morpheus, the eldest and most powerful of the sons.
Morpheus gave birth to the word “morphine,” which is ironic considering its pain relief properties. However, if consumed regularly will get you highly addicted to it, especially in its street-drug form -- heroin. Where too high a dosage will also kill you, quickly as well as slowly.
In our Greek Tale, very often Hypnos and Morpheus were called upon by the chief Gods to exercise their powers when they wished to intervene in mortal affairs. Hypnos had the power to induce a state of sleep and Morpheus had the power to make human forms appear to the dreamers. A tale told famously about the stubborn God Athena, the Goddess of War spoke of how she wore the medusa armour. Medusa was the highest God of War and her hair famously stretched out to sliding, slithery snakes. When Gods, such as Athena followed Medusa’s suit they wore her crest on their armor as a symbolism of their lack of empathy. Athena sported a cold, unmoving countenance because she was robbed of her childhood. She shared no human emotion and thus kills off any true communication shared between any living heart and soul.
After a sitting with Hypnos and his sons her tale celebrated how she was able to re-invent herself. She achieved a balance with her emotions. More so, she was able to forget her skepticism towards others and learnt to listen and compromise instead. Through Hypnos’s helpful ‘hypnosis’ induced sleep, he erased the wrong software in Athena’s mind, which was cold and self-centered. Instead, he installed in her new elements of empathy and consideration.
The Meaning Behind This Story
So how can we associate this with hypnotherapy practice today then…
Lots of ways really!
First of all, there is the association with the couch, which is used traditionally in hypnotherapy practice. A patient will lie back on a comfortable couch, either in the hypnotherapists office, house or even their own. Self-hypnotherapy is more accessible than ever because with a click of a button you can download and have your specialized hypnotherapy audio ready to play from any phone/tablet device in minutes. Take a look later at our amazing selection of different hypnotherapy sessions that target all sorts of ‘nightmares’ — addiction, mental health, anxiety, insomnia and more.
So how, now, can we relate Ancient Greek tales to modern times and real-life human experience when the subject matter clearly talks about the Gods. Well, it’s simple really, Greek Mythology and their many Gods were everything to Ancient Greek tradition. Therefore, in everything from Greek Literature — the Iliad (Story of Troy) to or short moral tales, such as this. In everyday life, temples, art — all of it laid commemoration to the Greek Gods, but who often represented subject matter, which the Greeks considered to be phenomenal.
The God Of Sleep, God of Night, God of Dreams, God of Death and God of War are all topics we consider today as being phenomenal, deep matters of subject. Therefore, when writers wrote about them, painters painted them and sculptors sculpted them in massive superhuman forms. They were figures that symbolized sheer greatness, as well as things that the people were in awe of. However, without the knowledge we have today of science, they had no other explanation but to call it a phenomenon or an act of the gods.
Still, there’s no denying that the imagery behind Hypnos and his sons clearly depict a service of hypnotherapy that they gave to the Gods and human beings. When we look at the story of Athena and how she put up a cold, ruthless countenance because of her lack of love and childhood. Following on she visits Hypnos and he helps her see empathy again. Well, I have seen this time and time again in my career.
In my years treating patients who have suffered from severe PTSD, especially during childhood they often embody these same characteristics. Then with my help performing the right hypnosis on them it allows them to reverse the distrust they have with the rest of the world. They learn to see things in reverse because I teach them to do so by taking out negative associations and replacing them with new, warm and positive ones. When we see things more positively we notice that everything goes more positively around us. When we think negatively or allow a habit of alcohol or nicotine, even nail biting gets a hold of us and controls our thoughts and actions. We notice that our life becomes a catastrophe - a constant battle fighting our demons, our cravings and the inevitable guilt and sorrow when we know we have given in to those negative thoughts, yet again.
Although, these tales told by the ancient Greeks over 2000 years ago appear to describe the gods practicing hypnotherapy as a form of therapeutic rediscovery when the mind loses its way. It is very likely that they, in fact, reference real events because of the complete similarities. In other words, it is likely people were actually treated by practitioners of hypnosis to overcome issues, such as trauma or PTSD, like the story of Athena.
Today hypnotherapy is used to cure all kinds of mental trauma from stress, anxiety, depression, insomnia, addiction, habits and more. You can experience hypnotherapy in sit-in sessions where a hypnotherapist is present. Then again, modern technology means that hypnotherapy has never been more accessible. It is no longer a luxury experienced only by the gods. In fact, it can be enjoyed by everyone and it can be carried out anywhere. Here at Clear Minds Hypnotherapy we provide a wide range of specialized hypnotherapy sessions, including overcoming PTSD. (insert link:https://clearmindshypnotherapy.com/collections/hypnotherapy-audio-online-store/products/overcome-ptsd-hypnotherapy)
You can discover a chance to change your life around by changing your perspective of things. Imagine a world with no limits, endless opportunities, hopes and happiness. I might be painting a picture of paradise that doesn’t exist. We are always going to get thrown into a sand pit due to an improvised crisis. However, what makes a difference is how you see this inevitable crisis. Do you learn to fear it and let it crush you, or do you choose to not fear and rise above it instead. In both cases, you are faced with the same problem. However, the outcome will prove more optimistic if you see it that way. This might seem the hardest thing in the world to do at the time. It is surprising what you can do when you are in complete control of your mind.
That is why I am here to help you every step of the way to gain back that necessary control using my self-hypnotherapy audios. So, take your time to rest with ‘Hypnos’ the God of Meditated Sleep and purify your mind with something optimistic and sweet. Find your release with hypnotherapy and set yourself free from those thoughts that overshadow your beliefs.
I am Hugh, your Hypnotherapist and although I have taken you back in time to explain the origins of my trade. I stand here today holding out a helping hand to give you that chance to change your spectrum of thinking with the click of a button. Follow this link to find all our different treatments that we offer. Start your journey to rediscovery and begin reliving again. (Insert link: https://clearmindshypnotherapy.com/collections/hypnotherapy-audio-online-store?page=1)