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suggestion as a factor in hypnotism is equal in potency, other things being equal, with the suggestion of another.
Auto-suggestion is now recognized as a factor in hypnotism by all followers of the Nancy school. Professor Bern-heim mentions it as an obstacle in the way of the cure of some of his patients. One case that he mentions was that of a young girl suffering from a tibio-tarsal sprain. " I tried to hypnotize her," says Bernheim; " she gave herself up to it with bad grace, saying that it would do no good. I succeeded, however, in putting her into a deep enough sleep two or three times. But the painful contracture persisted : she seemed to take a malicious delight in proving to the other patients in the service that it did no good, that she always felt worse. . . . The inrooted idea, the unconscious auto-suggestion, is such that nothing can pull it up again. When the treatment was begun, she seemed to be convinced that hypnotism could not cure her. Is it this idea, so deeply rooted in her brain, which neutralizes our efforts and her own wish to be cured?"1
Moll, more distinctly than Bernheim, recognizes the power of auto-suggestion as a potent factor which must always be taken into account in conducting experiments; although he, like Bernheim, strangely forgets to take it into account when he discusses hypnotism in its relations to crime. The following passage, for instance, should have been incorporated in his chapter on the Legal Aspects of Hypnotism:
" Expressions of the will which spring from the individual character of the patient are of the deepest psychological interest. The more an action is repulsive to his disposition, the stronger is his resistance (Forel). Habit and education play a large part here; it is generally very difficult successfully to suggest anything that is opposed to the confirmed habits of the subject. For instance, suggestions are made with success to a devout Catholic; but directly the suggestion conflicts with his creed, it will not be accepted. The surroundings play a part also. A subject will frequently decline a suggestion that will make him appear ridiculous. A woman whom I easily put into cataleptic
1 Suggestive Therapeutics, p. 214.