PSYCHOTHERAPY SCIENTIFIC AND RELIGIOUS

A Broad Perspective on Mental Healing

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354        PSYCHOTHERAW : SCIENTIFIC AND RELIGIOUS chap.
amputations and one for gall stones, but by far the greatest number were for the removal of the enormous scrotal tumours so common in India'24 (p. n).
That similar phenomena to those connected with hypnosis were known in earliest times is seen by the mythical story found in the Book of Genesis which was written to account for the division of humanity into the sexes. We are told that taking Eve out of Adam God caused a deep sleep to fall upon him, and this is evidence that the writer of the narrative imagined a phenomenon similar to hypnosis as a means of anaesthetizing a person for the performance of an operation. Actually it is known that surgery was practised in Egypt at a date very much earlier than that at which this myth was written down. Plato's explanation of sex corresponds closely to the Genesis myth. He suggests that in the beginning man and woman were one, but that through the wrath of the gods they were cleft apart, only ceaselessly to strive hereafter to come together again.
Had it not been for the discovery of anaesthetics, which are so easily administered, hypnotism would undoubtedly have a great vogue even at the present time. Suggestion, without inducing the hypnotic state, is largely used at present, and usually unwittingly, by most surgeons of the first rank, i.e. in elimination of pain in surgical cases, to make operations more easy. It has been suggested to some that hypnotism would be peculiarly valuable as a means of affording relief in particular cases ; for example, to those who, having undergone the operation for a detached retina, must in consequence remain perfectly still for many days a terrible ordeal I2 (p. 126).
Liebeault and others have pointed out that in the hypnotic state, whether induced spontaneously or by external means, the hypnotized are able, without evil