A NEW SYSTEM OF MENTAL THERAPEUTICS. 179
dition for the reception of telepathic impressions or communications. It needs no argument to establish the truth of this proposition. It is universally known to be true, by all who have given the slightest attention to psychological science, that passivity on the part of the subject is the primary condition necessary for the production of any psychic phenomenon. Passivity simply means the suspension of the functions of the objective mind for the time being, for the purpose of allowing the subjective mind to receive impressions and to act upon them. The more perfectly the objective intelligence can be held in abeyance, the more perfectly will the subjective mind perform its functions. This is why a state of profound hypnotism is the most favorable for the reception of suggestions, either oral or mental. That this is more especially true of mental suggestions is shown by all experiments in mesmerism. It may, therefore, be safely assumed that the most favorable condition in which a patient can be placed for the reception of telepathic suggestions for therapeutic purposes is the condition wherein the functions of his objective intelligence are, for the time being, entirely suspended.
The third proposition is that there is nothing to differentiate hypnotic sleep from natural sleep. Startling as this proposition may appear to the superficial observer, it is fully concurred in both by M. Li^bault and Professor Bernheim.
" There is no fundamental difference," says the latter,1 " between spontaneous and induced sleep. M. Lidbault has very wisely established this fact. The spontaneous sleeper is in relationship with himself alone; the idea which occupies his mind just before going to sleep, the impressions which the sensitive and sensorial nerves of the periphery continue to transmit to the brain, and the stimuli coming from the viscera, become the point of departure for the incoherent images and impressions which constitute dreams. Have those who deny the psychical phenomena of hypnotism, or who only admit them in cases of diseased nervous temperament, ever reflected upon what occurs in normal sleep, in which the best-balanced mind is carried
1 Suggestive Therapeutics, pp. 140, 141.