A Broad Perspective on Mental Healing

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x                SUGGESTION AND THE FACTOR OF FAITH            371
a long time in different parts of the world. The New Thought movement in England and America is a prominent example. The New Nancy School will, however, be a convenient one to take as the subject because it systematized and made explicit important details of practice which are neglected by other systems.
Baudouin I4 distinguishes in heterosuggestion between acceptivity, the ease with which a suggestion is received from another person, and suggestibility > the capacity of a person for realizing an idea whatever has been its origin. He states that acceptivity is an undesirable factor, but that without an exaggerated acceptivity a high degree of suggestibility is a source of strength and is to be desired. It is, of course, suggestibility in this restricted sense and not acceptivity that is brought into play in autosuggestion.
He also distinguishes between spontaneous autosuggestions, in which the matter of the suggestions has caught the attention of the subject and been realized by him spontaneously, that is, without conscious intention ; and reflective autosuggestions in which the same process is deliberately initiated.
Spontaneous autosuggestion is a process which appears to take place fairly commonly ; in fact, whenever an idea which has happened to catch our attention realizes itself. An opinion, for example, which we have often repeated tends to become a firmly held belief. When we see a fire freshly lighted, we may begin to feel warmer, although it is not yet really giving out an appreciable amount of heat. An illness that we are always talking and thinking about tends to develop in us.
There are two fairly obvious conditions which an idea must fulfil before it can become a spontaneous autosuggestion. The first is that it shall have caught the