Professor Alexander Erskine - A Hypnotist’s Case Book – Removing and curing pain
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
A Hypnotist’s Case Book – Professor Alexander Erskine
It was about this time that there began to develop in me, without at first any effort on my part, a peculiar phenomenon which I had noticed for a number of years.
I found that I had a certain power to remove pain. What this power was I did not know, though my friends often used to avail themselves of it, and I used to oblige in a happy-go-lucky spirit, without making any effort to understand what it was.
My method was quite simple. I found that if a friend had a headache, toothache, neuralgia or any such ailment, I could, by placing my right hand on his-or her-solar plexus (the spot where the breast-bones end) and my left hand on the seat of the pain, generate, a great warmth in the spots where my hands were, and in the hands themselves. In a few moments this warmth changed into a strong, tingling sensation in the left hand, and by the time this happened the pain disappeared.
At first these "cures" were rather haphazard, as was only to be expected in an empirical experiment such as I was then undertaking; but it was not long before I began to reduce them to a more scientific basis. Thought, observation and analysis discovered to me a number of constant phenomena in them.
The most important of them was this - that it was only by an intense concentration of the will that I was able to achieve any result. If for one moment I relaxed my will to cure, no warmth was generated, no tingling sensation supervened. More, if I relaxed the will after the warmth had begun, or after the tingling sensation was present-if even for one moment I allowed my attention to wander to anything in the room, or anything said to me by anyone-both manifestations disappeared on the instant. And to anticipate for a moment a point I must refer to later in the discussion, I find to-day that if I do not myself believe that I can cure a patient, I am powerless to do so. That is a phenomenon of the subconscious mind I do not profess to understand.
Another strange thing about these early "cures" of mine was that I always became extremely exhausted after I had performed them.