One of the things for which Dr. Milton Erickson, whom we’ve met before, was famous, was his handshake. Dr. Erickson describes this in detail, but the simplest explanation is that he’d interrupt the normal flow of the handshake, in other words he’d extend his hand, the other person would do the same, expecting fully to shake the doctor’s hand, but instead of actually shaking the person’s hand, Erickson would grab his wrist.
In this fashion, he’d interrupt an expected pattern, and replace it with another. This would create mild shock and allow him to make therapeutic suggestions.
He would carry out a lot of other manoeuvres; very gently stroking the person’s palm with one of his fingers, allowing his, (Erickson’s), thumb to gently caress the inside of the other’s wrist, etc. I suggest very strongly that you do not under any circumstance try this yourself. Dr. Erickson was a master. If you or I were to try this, we’d end up being decked!
We chatted briefly about the fact that during R.E.M., while we’re dreaming, nature prevents us from acting out our dreams. This is even more proof that shock pushes us quickly into the R.E.M. state and that we experience catalepsy, or muscle rigidity, the same way that nature prevents us from acting out our dreams.
We’ve all heard or read about people actually being frozen by shock. Perhaps we’ve even experienced it ourselves. It can last usually from a second to a minute in most people, depending on the severity.
When something startling, frightening or utterly unexpected grabs your attention, an electrical impulse travels up from your brain stem, through your mid-brain and into your cortex. This charge is known as a PGO spike, or Ponto-Geniculo-Occipital spike.
“What’s that,” you ask. “I haven’t a clue,” I reply.
Yes, actually, I do. They’re waves, and may be recorded from the Pons and the occipital cortex regions of the brain, where these waveforms originate. Pons Varolii is found on the brain stem, and is roughly midway between the medulla oblongata and the mid-brain, in front of the cerebellum. These waves appear, and are most prominent, immediately before R.E.M. sleep.
Shock hypnosis, understandably, is entered much more quickly than the more usual progressive relaxation hypnosis. Because of this, we’re wide open to suggestion and instinctive programming.
While I was doing my circus act and back-flipping off that branch, if someone had whispered an hypnotic suggestion in my ear just as I took off, I’d almost certainly been effectively programmed.
Again, I beg you not to try this by creeping up behind your spouse or boy/girlfriend like a Sioux Indian and bellowing in their ear! They may have a heart attack, and/or you yourself may suffer serious bodily injury!