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Review Essays of Academic, Professional & Technical Books in the Humanities & Sciences



Grendel and His Mother: Healing the Traumas of Childhood Through Dreams, Imagery and Hypnosis by Nicholas E. Brink (Imagery and Human Development Series) Whereas a dream is specific to an individual dreamer, a myth is an ancestral dream generated by a culture. Both dream and myth describe the processes of the unconscious mind, myth as the unconscious process on a universal level applicable to all.

One cause of the behavioral, emotional and mental torment in a person's life is the psychological trauma that results from the actions and words of parents and others. This volume, Grendel and His Mother: Healing the Traumas of Childhood Through Dreams, Imagery and Hypnosis by Nicholas E. Brink examines the effect of such trauma on a child's development and how the resulting torment eventually brings this child as an adult to psychotherapy. This trauma may be as subtle as a parental sigh of disappointment or as direct as physical or sexual abuse. Six clients are then led on a journeying through the unconscious mind using dreamwork, hypnosis and imagery in the course of therapy to uncover and heal these traumas to free the client of torment.

As recorded in the Old English myth of Beowulf, Beowulf frees the Danish King Hrothgar from twelve years of torment by killing two monsters, Grendel and his mother. This legend, when examined as an ancestral dream, offers a map for the journey through the unconscious mind to heal childhood trauma and provides an outline for this book. First, each client finds the strength to conquer the more immediate torment of the behavioral, emotional or thought disorder-Grendel-and then to uncover and overcome in a four-step process the deeper cause of this torment, the original trauma-Grendel's mother.

Excerpt: Appropriately but astonishingly, Tolkien's other great achievement—long before writing his trilogy—was to refute the nearly unanimous view that the Anglo-Saxon poem of Beowulf was unworthy of being called good literature, let alone great literature. Most scholars had disdained the poem because Grendel, his mother, and the Dragon' were the fantasies of a "wild folk-tale," and unworthy of a true epic. ("As if Milton had retold 'Jack and the Beanstalk' in noble verse," Tolkien remarked wryly.) But Tolkien builds his case directly on these monsters. He titled his revolutionary 1936 lecture "Beowulf The Monsters and the Critics"—arguing that the poem derives its very greatness from their symbolic stature: "The universal significance which is given to the fortunes of its hero" is precisely because his foes are inhuman enemies of God and mankind as primordial and elemental and lethal as Titans.

Consider the Cyclops, Tolkien proposed. "Of Grendel it is said: Godes yrre Baer [he bore the anger of God]. But the Cyclops is god-begotten and his maiming is an offence against his begetter, the god Poseidon. [He cites an earlier scholar, Archibald Strong:] "Odysseus is struggling with a monstrous and wicked foe, but he is not exactly thought of as struggling with the powers of darkness. . . . [The Cyclops], by devouring his guests, acts in a way which is hateful to Zeus and the other gods: yet he is . . . god-begotten and under divine protection, and [his maiming] is a wrong which Poseidon is slow to forgive. But the gigantic foes whom Beowulf has to meet are [constantly] identified with the foes of God, . . . the powers of darkness with which Christian men felt themselves to be encompassed.'" In the poem's own words, they are "adversaries of God" [as well as] "enemies of mankind." And Beowulf cleanses his world of them.

A striking fact about Beowulf's first two heroic victories over God's foes is that the Deity all but maintains a hands-off policy. Friederich Klaeber, the authoritative editor of Beowulf has two impressive insights about the second fight: Despite the poem's inserted remark that Grendel's mother is less dangerous than Grendel in as much as she is a woman, ... the second fight is far more difficult for Beowulf than the first, although he is well armed. . . . The she-demon could not be wounded by any weapon except her own. . . . [Yet] God's help consists in nothing else than showing Beowulf the marvelous sword.

And, though the mutual enmity of God and Grendel is reiterated three times in the first battle scene, the deity is absent, even as a "second" or an invisible referee. At the point where one would most expect divine intervention, the central figure decreeing Grendel's destiny is termed "fate" (wyrd), a concept quite distinct from God or even the pagan gods.—From this viewpoint, the retroactive credit bestowed on God in the postgame celebrations rings hollow to the alert modern reader, whose keenest impression is of a magnified heroism on Beowulf's part.

In the popular legends of many eras, monsters are conceived of as stupid gluttons, not necessarily hostile. But Grendel, Tolkien emphasizes, "is primarily a . . . physical monster whose main function is hostility to humanity." And the dragon, whom Beowulf sacrifices his own life to slay, personifies "malice, greed, destruction (the evil side of heroic life), and . . . the undiscriminating cruelty of fortune that distinguishes not good or bad (the evil aspect of all life)." "It is just because the main foes in Beowulf are inhuman," he contends, "that the story is larger and more significant than this imaginary poem of a great king's fall."

In his typically reflective way, Tolkien imagines the author of Beowulf, in a time when Christianity was established but pre-Christian cultural memory was still fresh, looking back upon "a past, pagan but noble, and fraught with a deep significance." This poet he visualizes as "an Englishman using afresh ancient and largely traditional material, and using it in an original way." He is worth quoting more fully: In Beowulf;

[T]he use of allusions to old tales, mostly darker and more desperate than the foreground, . . . creates a sense of many-storied antiquity, the illusion of surveying a past, pagan but noble and fraught with a deep significance a past that itself had depth and reached backward into a dark antiquity of sorrow. [It gives a] sense of perspective, of antiquity with a greater and yet darker antiquity behind. The old dark tales of men and lands beyond the sea echo as from a vast distances.

It diminishes Tolkien's achievement not a bit to say that all of the numerous details in those quotes exactly fit The Lord of the Rings—which wasn't even written yet. The tales he "told" the modern world are uncanny in the way they convey a sense of "vast echoing distances," pasts behind pasts beyond pasts, like mountain ranges that grow hazier and dimmer as they recede to the horizon—with even a hint of a vast unseen extending beyond that horizon. And to say that this "ancient and largely traditional material [is] used afresh, and in an original way" is a thundering understatement.

So when we encounter a third comment of his on Beowulf—"[This ancient imagination] has power, as it were, to revive its spirit even in our own times"--- and reflect even on the quantitative impact of exactly that revival in LOTR—what can we say but "amen!"

It is in this deep, spiritually tectonic sense that Tolkien's art was shaped by the art of Beowulf. The term "source material" is simply shallow." And this deep spiritual tectonics—a major element of the Tolkien with whom millions resonate—is what Dr. Brink has, for the first time, plumbed and charted in psychotherapeutic terms.

Let's take a more specific sounding:

It's often been observed that a society's mores can be stronger than its formal religion—can alter even a powerful, authoritarian doctrine. In Brazil, Catholics were allowed to eat chicken on Friday because, for so many ages, chicken has belonged so strongly to a different, less meat-like category that mores overrode the Catholic prohibition. In the ancient Germanic society to which Anglo-Saxon culture belonged, even the image of the Christian God and His throne were re-shaped. Hospitality was so (socially) sacred, feasting such a potent symbol, and the chieftain's gift-giving ceremony so deeply important in their mores, that it went without saying. The assumption was too deep for words. And its power to reshape even cosmic concepts was neatly caught in Alvin A. Lee's book title: "Guest-Hall of Eden." Even Paradise was envisioned as a celestial Heorot.

So the statement that Grendel "could not approach the gift-throne" isn't just a throwaway detail. It spotlights him as an outcast. An outcast is hardly a monster; but another, odder detail raises the emotional pitch: The poem devotes 20 lines merely to his approach to the hall. What's the big deal? Was the poet being paid by the word?

It's easy to assume that the spooky old Dark Ages were full of creatures as terrifying as Hollywood's "Alien." Perhaps so. But you will search long and hard for anything in Medieval story whose creepiness endures to this day. As one scholar put it to me: "In the Viking sagas, the hero sees a monster, says, `Oh, you're a monster.' Bop! No more monster.—But Grendel and his mother, especially that scene when he approaches the hall—it makes me shudder."

The scene has been called "a motif of pure terror"; the sense of Grendel's unearthly menace peaks in this passage. Several times, varied for maximum effect, the poet deploys words like "crept . . . stepped . . . advanced . . . came on . . . ," interlacing them with a shifting collage of images even cinema couldn't capture: Pale night, the sleeping Danes in the darkened hall, Grendel's anger, the "banks of mist," the wakeful Beowulf and his swelling courage, God's curse on Grendel, the wine-hall and its splendid decorations—until the monster reaches Heorot and, in a fury, smashes in the heavy door. He steps onto the "polished floor"—and right then, where a second-rate filmmaker might break the tension explosively, the action stops dead.

Only a consummate tale-spinner could have the confidence in his skill to suspend a climax that way. His spell has been so binding that the next image, an instant before Grendel exultantly scans the hall, has no taint of the comic book or fairy tale: "Out of his eyes came an ugly light, most like to a flame."

The total scene outdoes those of Grendel's mother and the dragon—but not by much. They are the Beowulf poet's deepest art. And what Dr. Brink has plumbed—uniquely—is the even deeper psychological layers of this art, to discover their resonance for modern psychotherapy.

But perhaps these images of "depths" are less fitting than Tolkien's own, in concluding his lecture. It's a bit ironic that they express a feeling for the heart of human psychology with which not even the Vatican would quibble:

We look down as if from a visionary height upon the house of man in the valley of the world. . . . [The poem] glimpses the cosmic and moves with the thought of all men concerning the fate of human life and efforts.

In Grendel and His Mother something has happened external to the individual, outside of his or her control, that has caused the tormenting behavioral, emotional, or thought disorder. The ancient Old English myth of Beowulf offers us a map for our journey through the unconscious mind to overcome this torment, first to give us strength to overcome the more immediate torment of the behavioral, emotional, or thought disorder, our Grendel, and then to uncover and overcome the deeper cause of this torment, Grendel's mother. Why use a myth as a map of this journey?
Myths, the dreams of our ancient ancestors, like any dream, describe the process of the unconscious mind. Whereas an individual dream is specific to an individual, a myth of the culture describes the unconscious process on a more universal level applicable to all of us.

Jason, now as an adult, is suffering anxiety and panic attacks; he is dissociated from the cause of these panic attacks just as Hrothgar, the great king in the story of Beowulf, is dissociated from the cause of the emotional pain of his original abandonment. Hrothgar's immediate torment, i.e., Jason's panic attacks, is seen in the form of the monster Grendel who nightly attacks his great hall and kills the King's retainers. The fact that Jason has initiated therapy suggests that his inner warrior has been called upon and is preparing to face and destroy his tormenting anxiety, just as the great warrior Beowulf is summoned to save Hrothgar from Grendel. With this victory Beowulf is able to celebrate his authority over Grendel, just as Jason celebrates his victory over his anxiety, only to have another monster, Grendel's mother, arrive to cause further torment. After tracking Grendel's mother back to her den in the murky waters of a monster infested lake, Jason's unconscious mind, the warrior Beowulf, succeeds in killing this second monster. When Jason uncovers the original, unconscious source of his torment, the sighs of his father, he can truly free himself from this torment. Each line of this ancient poem has something to offer in explaining the course of therapy to overcome that which has tormented us since our early years, that something which is outside of our domain of responsibility and which we have forgotten.

Similarly, the ancient Greek myth of Twelve Labors of Hercules also describes a journey of overcoming such torment. As Hercules succeeds in completing twelve superhuman tasks, he is able to overcome the torment caused him by his stepmother, the Goddess Hera, and thus becomes a god in the Greek pantheon.

The second cause of behavioral, emotional, and thought disorders is well illustrated in the ancient Nordic myth of Loki 's Children. In this second category of problems, rather than the cause arising from outside of ourselves, the problems are caused by the decisions we make in determining who we are and what we do that turns out not to be so wise. The trickster god within us, Loki, begins to torment us and finds ways to make us face the not-so-wise way we have become or the not-so-wise things we do. He torments us with three monsters, the three children of Loki: Jormungand, our fear; Hel, our guilt; and Fenrir, our obsessive worry. As we are forced to face these three monsters within us, we eventually die and are reborn in the new innocent Balder. The process of therapy to overcome our fear, guilt, and obsessive worry caused by our unwise decisions, whether conscious or unconscious, leads us to face the final battle of death, Ragnarok, and rebirth lifting us then to a new level of life.

In a similar Irish myth, the high king Fergus, when confronted by Esirt, the Leprechaun King's poet and our internal trickster, admits that he made a poor decision by being unfaithful to his Queen. Esirt's taunts eventually lead to Fergus' s death, while facing a great lake monster, and his rebirth as the even greater and more famous King Fergus. This story is found in the ancient Irish myth of The Death of Fergus Mac Leide. Since these behavioral, emotional, or thought disorders are caused by our own unwise decision making, a part of us has to die before we are able to rise to new heights, whereas when we are not required to take ownership of our problem when caused by something outside ourselves, such death is not necessary.

Why do we make such unwise decisions? Sometimes it is because of things that happened to us early in life. "I am not going to be angry like my father was," or "I am not going to let people walk over me like my mother did," are such decisions. Each of us make these decisions for which we need to take responsibility yet these decisions are based on experiences from outside of ourselves and for which we need not take responsibility. Thus, the distinction between these two causes of disorders is lost, yet facing problems with this distinction in mind opens doors in self-understanding and facilitates the journey of personal growth. The intersection between these two etiologies and the flow back and forth in the process of therapy will be considered in Loki's Children.

A dream commonly causes great internal commotion. Its bizarre nature opens the dreamer to many questions. "Where did the dream come from?" "What does it mean?" "Is it going to happen?" The dreamer is often eager to talk about the dream and somehow knows the dream is important. Dreams are not random and meaningless. The emotional reactions to dreams—the anxiety, fatigue, and excitement—only add to our belief that dreams must be important. Dreams are created in our unconscious mind. Understanding the meaning of dreams can open doors to real change in the course of psychotherapy.

Consider a dream of 27-year-old Mandi: "I'm waiting in a checkout line of a market with only a half gallon of milk. Several people are in front of me in line. The woman next in front of me is older, probably in her fifties. I've a great urge to give her a shove. Several people are in front of her, I think maybe another woman and two men. It's the express line. Each is carrying only a couple of things. I've had this dream many times until a couple of months ago, when I dreamt I actually pushed this woman that was in front of me. I woke up and don't remember what happened after that, but I haven't had the dream since."

Dreams provide messages from the unconscious mind, as do the images produced in hypnotic trance. These messages may tell of internal struggles and emotional pain that parallel the trauma or emotionally painful family behaviors and attitudes that affect and limit the dreamer's life. The purpose of this book about psychotherapy is to present ways to make sense of these unconscious messages and to use these messages to facilitate personal understanding and internal or unconscious change. Mandi may attempt to change using will power, but real change occurs only when internal or unconscious self-images change. As we shall see, helping Mandi find meaning in her dream is one step in her journey to health. Beginning with Chapter IV, the six individuals studied in this book will be led, first, to identify the incidents of abuse and/or emotionally painful family behaviors and attitudes that affected and limited their lives. Then, hypnotic and dream work strategies will be offered to help these individuals free themselves from these limits.

I asked Mandi to tell me more about the feelings of the Mandi in her dream who had the urge to push the woman in the checkout line. She answered, "I was horrified by the urge but thought it would be fun, too—funny, hilariously funny—watching one person fall into the next, watching the horror and amazement on their faces as they each fell. I couldn't help but laugh inside at what they would think. How outrageous."

A Gestalt dream work technique of Fritz Perls (1970) is used to help the client identify with each part of a dream. Identifying with each part of the dream helps the client understand the unconscious processes. I suggested to Mandi, "Consider these two parts of you separately and find them inside of you. One part is horrified about doing something so outrageous. The other part of you finds such an outrageous act hilariously funny and could enjoy the amazement of others. Find each of those parts within you. What do you find?"

Mandi, who is moderately obese, laughs, "I have sat and eaten a whole half gallon of ice cream at one time and had the thought of how horrified people would be, how horrified my mother would be, to see me eat it."

I continued, "Take these feelings even further back into your childhood. Can you find them there?"

Mandi had been in weekly sessions of therapy for about a month and was somewhat experienced in dream work and hypnosis. She came to therapy because of problems she had with her adolescent daughter, but the focus of attention quickly shifted to personal issues, issues that did affect her daughter. After a minute's thought, she answered. "Sure, my mother was often outraged about things I would do, about what I would want to wear to school like a short skirt on a snowy day. She would always say, 'What would other people think?' I hate it when she says that. I was a good kid. I hardly ever did anything to upset my mother except wearing outrageous things to school. I was very responsible. I did well in school. I did chores around the house, but I rebelled by wearing bizarre things to school. I hated hearing 'what would other people think?' Though her mother's comments may have been the mother's way of showing she loved and cared for Mandi, to Mandi these comments were judgmental and critical. Mandi was wounded repeatedly by these comments, which she heard as conditional love. As innocent as these family attitudes and behaviors may be, the wounds caused do affect and limit one's life and are passed on from generation to generation.

A variety of hypnotic guided imagery techniques can also provide direct access to the unconscious and can be used in the same manner as dreams.

I suggested to Mandi, "Sit back and relax." After I led her through a hypnotic induction for relaxation, I asked her, "Take the feeling you feel when you think of doing something outrageous, take this feeling back through time. Watch your life go by—people, places, events, holidays, seasons—be curious and wondering as you go back through time, carrying this feeling with you. As you go back through time, carrying this feeling, something will soon catch your attention. When it does, lift the index finger of your left hand." She lifted her finger. "Tell me what is happening."

"I'm about to leave the house for school. I'm wearing jeans with the knees ripped and a hole in the butt. I look in the mirror and can see the red from my panties through the hole. I laugh when I see it, know my mother is going to freak, but I don't care. . . . My mother is yelling, 'What are your teachers going to think?'

I just yell back, 'I'm late for school' and run out the door."

"What is happening now?"

"I'm walking down the street and meet one of my girl friends. I turn and show her the hole. She puts her hand over her mouth and laughs."

"How do you feel? Let`your adult self go back and be with your teenage self and let your adult self help your younger self find the best words to describe how you feel."

"I feel excited. I'm laughing and feel carefree."

"Go back for a minute to just before you left the house. Your mother is saying `what are other people going to think?' What do you feel?"

"I feel angry, defiant, like I'd like to stick my tongue out at her. I hate whenshe says 'what will other people think?' I'd never say it to my kids."

"Now, let your adult self go back and be with your younger self. Help your younger self find the right words to tell your mom what you need from her."

"I know what you're asking, but this time I'm sort of happy she said it because it gave me an excuse to run out the door. I'll try to think of some other times .. . Yeah, 'Mom, I need you to let me be me, to let me know you understand myfeelings."

Mandi was familiar with this procedure. During an earlier session we had talkedabout the healing nature of stating what one needs from one's mother (or father), about how such statements tell one how one wants to be. Saying, "I will never say 'What will other people think?' tells one nothing about the alternatives of how one wants to be or what one could say.

Though the phrase "what will other people think" is not what most people wouldconsider abusive, it was a major determinant of Mandi's defiant behaviors. She let it limit her freedom in such endeavors as losing weight. For Mandi, this phrase needed to be considered significant in the healing process, a process that could eventually allow Mandi greater freedom to make decisions in her life.

To reiterate, the purpose of this book is to examine ways to access the unconscious mind through dreams and hypnosis, to identify incidents of abuse and/or family behaviors and attitudes that affect and limit one's life, and to understand the process of healing—of freeing oneself from these limits. The unconscious processes of an individual in the process of healing are extremely personal and unique, yet each of us has the capacity to understand these experiences of others. We are able to empathize because we have had similar experiences. There exists among the people of a group, if not all people, in common unconscious processes that allow such empathy. These group unconscious processes allow us to generalize from one person to another. How can we access the unconscious processes in common to all people, at least for the people of a particular cultural group? The collected myth of the group offers us this understanding of the in common unconscious processes.

Whereas dreams, guided imagery, and hypnosis provide an understanding of unconscious processes at an individual level, myths offer a more global understanding of the functioning of the unconscious mind in the process of healing. Ancient myths can be considered the dreams of our ancestors. Myths have been refined over the years to provide this global understanding. Ancient myths can be understood at their deepest level using the same techniques of dream work as offered through Gestalt Therapy. Jung suggests we need to examine a series of dreams rather than a single dream to understand the unconscious process. Ancient myths are equivalent to a series of dreams and are stories to which we can all relate through our unconscious mind.

One particular myth, the old English myth of Beowulf, offers us a map of a journey through the unconscious mind to overcome and heal the wounds of childhood trauma and emotionally painful family behaviors and attitudes. As you may recall if you read this myth in school, the story begins with Scyld Scefing as an infant, abandoned on the shores of Denmark. This infant grows to become the first great king of the Danes. His son, grandson, and great grandson, each in their turn, become even greater kings than their father. Our story is about the great King Hrothgar, the great grandson of Scyld Scefing.

Each chapter of this book will examine a section of this story to provide us with greater understanding of the healing process. Each part of a dream or myth, each element and person, can be found within each of us. This introduction to King Hrothgar offers us an example of dissociation. Scyld Scefing represents that early part of us who was abandoned or traumatized in some way. Yet, just as King Hrothgar is separated or dissociated from the trauma by three generations, the part of us in the present does not remember or is dissociated from the trauma.

The trauma of Scyld Scefing is very much alive in King Hrothgar, as we will see. Though this great and benevolent king is loved by his people, a great tormentor destroys his will and strength. Each night, Grendel, a powerful and evil monster, comes into the King's great banquet hall and kills one or more of his men. For twelve years, the people of Denmark have had to hide from this monster to protect their lives. So far, no warrior has been strong enough to rid the kingdom of Grendel.

In our lives we have such tormentors: fears, anxieties, obsessions, depression, marital discord, bad habits, etc. These tormentors limit our lives and prevent us from living comfortably and effectively. We may live for years believing we lack the ability to conquer these tormentors with our usual and ineffective defenses. As we shall see, our usual defenses and beliefs can actually strengthen our tormentor, just as Grendel's continued slaughter provides him with greater self-confidence. We will need to find new ways to fight our tormentors.

Chapters II and III, which examine the historic factors that prepare a client for therapy, correspond to this first, historic portion of the Beowulf myth. Therapy to overcome one's tormentor begins in Chapter IV when Beowulf, our powerful inner warrior, enters the story. Beowulf has heard, from his home across the sea, of the plight of King Hrothgar and takes on the challenge to rid this King of the Danes of his torment by killing Grendel. As the story progresses, after Beowulf arrives and after the evening festivities end, Beowulf and his men bed down in the great hall of the king to await Grendel. When Grendel enters, Beowulf lies naked, pretending to be asleep. Beowulf rises, grabs hold of Grendel's arm, and refuses to let go. After a violent struggle Grendel pulls away, leaving his arm behind. Like Hrothgar's hero, our own inner Beowulf comes to us when we least expect him, from our unconscious mind, and uses a weapon we would least expect, his bare hands. Our usual defenses are ineffective and interfere with our natural inner, bare handed strength.

If we abandon our defenses and trust our inherent strength, we can win in the battle over our tormentor. We have the ability to overcome our tormentor by facing it without our defenses, facing it naked and refusing to let go. When we do so, our tormentor loses strength and dies. We then celebrate our victory as King Hrothgar, Beowulf, and their retainers celebrate.

But that night, as the celebration ends and the celebrants fall asleep, Grendel's mother enters to seek revenge for her son's death, attacking and killing one of the Geat warriors. Likewise, overcoming our tormentor opens the door to the deeper problem: the real tormentor, our trauma or painful family behaviors and attitudes, hidden deep in the murky lake of our unconscious. With our victory over Grendel, we are now prepared to face this greater, original tormentor, the mother of Grendel.

Beowulf tracks Grendel's mother to a lake seething with blood and monsters. Wearing his armor, he dives in and fights his way to the bottom. At the bottom, Grendel's mother finds him and takes him to her cave, where they begin their fight to the death. Although she is unable to penetrate his armor, Beowulf's own weapons cannot stop his adversary. He then discovers in her lair a famous sword made by giants, a sword an ordinary man would be unable to lift. Beowulf swings this sword and severs the neck of Grendel's mother, and in death, her fiery blood dissolves the sword.

To find the origin of our torment—the trauma of our childhood—we need to track it down to its source, at the bottom of a murky lake, deep within our unconscious. When we find it, we must face it with all our strength. We have collected much armor, our many defenses, from our lifelong but unconscious battle to deal with this torment. These defenses continue to be effective but lead us to the usual stalemate—otherwise our tormentor already would be dead. For victory, we need to uncover and understand our tormentor's strength—the giant's sword—and use it against her (or him). Only then can we conquer the effect the trauma has had on us. We cut off the monster's head, i.e., cut off the effect the trauma had on us, and carry signs of our victory to the surface of the lake, back home to the great hall of King Hrothgar. Only then are we truly able to celebrate. This myth of Beowulf offers us an understanding of the unconscious process of healing and a recipe for the necessary ingredients to attain a new sense of freedom in life.

This story of Hrothgar, Beowulf, and Grendel and his mother will now be retold in detail, interspersed with clinical examples from my experiences in therapy. Following the outline of the myth, Chapter II presents the development of the emotional problems of despairing individuals who will eventually seek therapy. Chapter III examines how the despair leads individuals to seek help. Chapter IV and the remaining chapters examine the course of therapy for six people. Following the course of therapy from beginning to end brings us around full circle, resolving the problem developed in Chapters II and III.

Affect Regulation Toolbox: Practical and Effective Hypnotic Interventions for the Over-Reactive Client by Carolyn Daitch (W.W. Norton) Rational judgment, soothing behavior, and calm observation often go out the window when responding to stress. This book presents hypnotherapeutic skills (including breathing exercises) and other easy-to-learn techniques that help people maintain healthy responses to stress and facilitate effective clinical work and a happier life.

Affect regulation—control over one's emotions—has become a popular term in therapy over the past few decades, with emerging research in neuroscience and attachment paving the way for a better understanding of the root causes of our wayward feelings and behaviors. But much of the current research focuses on explaining models of normal affective development and theories for its dysregulation, rather than on its specific implica­tions in a clinical setting.

Now that we know so much about the origins of our erratic emotions, what can we do to control and normalize them?

Carolyn Daitch's Affect Regulation Toolbox provides the answer, focusing on hypnosis as an effective way for individuals to learn how to regulate and control their excessive emotions, both inside and outside the therapy room.

Conflicted interpersonal relationships, anxiety, stress, psychosomatic illness, and an inability to self-soothe, among other symptoms, can all lead to over-reactivity. For these clients, talk-therapy alone may be inadequate for provid­ing long-lasting behavioral changes that manage their highly reactive emotions. Hypnosis has been clinically proven to help clients reinterpret their stress response and self-manage their inappropriate reactions. In this book, Daitch expertly equips therapists to do just that, providing them with quick, practical, and easy­to-learn hypnotic interventions—or tools—to choose from in order to help clients regulate their over-reactivity.

Daitch draws on 25 years of clinical experience as a hypnosis practitioner to present 32 specific hypnotic tools from her toolbox, including "Switching Channels," "Parts of Self," "Juxtaposition of Two Feelings," and "Thought Stopping," among many others. Explanations of the four primary categories or tiers—of the tools, along with hypnotic scripts and commentary for each, are covered in the first part of the book. The second part of the book details the application of the tools in clini­cal practice, with a focus on three main areas: common and severe anxiety disorders, couples in conflict, and other interpersonal relationships. A final chapter addresses typical roadblocks and challenges a clinician might encounter when using the "toolbox," such as low-hypnotizability, client resistance, noncompliance, and making sure the tools used match the clients' needs.

Whether stemming from environmental factors or neurobiological traits, over-reactivity can be triggered very quickly and powerfully. As a result, therapists need to have the tools at hand to teach clients how to intervene with specific techniques for inducing calmer states, not just in the therapist's office, but in their day-to-day lives. Daitch's rich array of hypnotic tools is the ideal answer.

For clinicians who are discouraged with unsuccessful traditional psychotherapeutic methods and want to be able to offer their over-reactive clients explicit strategies with long-term results, Affect Regulation Toolbox is an invaluable resource, allowing clients to maintain a healthy response to stress and facilitate effective clinical work for a happier life.

Excerpt: As a therapist, you know that people who are over-reactive pay dearly for their emotional styles in the untold sacrifice of their peace of mind and the diminished satisfaction in their lives. And you know how discourag­ing it can be to not be able to provide them with techniques that lead to long-term results. For them, help with the following problems can't come quickly enough. They typically experience a series of conflicted relationships, particularly intimate and/or work relationships, display symptoms of anxiety, and often experience psychosomatic illnesses and over-reactions to bodily symptoms. In addition, they find it difficult to do one or more of the following:

  • make decisions using rational judgments
  • remain calm and clear in the face of stress
  • observe and reflect on their emotions and behavior
  • tolerate uncomfortable, "negative" affect or concurrent conflicting emotions
  • tolerate criticism without defensiveness
  • suspend judgment
  • soothe themselves or their partners
  • consider positive, objective interpretations of events or communi­cations


When clients experience such symptoms on a regular basis fail to apply the psychotherapeutic techniques taught in the therapist's office to their outside life, it can often spiral them down into feelings of despair. Many come in feeling hopeless to begin with and the] feel terribly desperate when they seem to be beyond repair, even in the hands of a "professional." Some clients will "act in" and blame themselves or be embarrassed by their perceived failure. These feelings o shame therefore reinforce what is often already an overdeveloped sense of inadequacy. Others will "act out," feeling angry at the therapist because "it's not working." They may claim that therapy is a waste of time and money and quit therapy altogether and/or seek out another therapist who will "get it right."

Since the stress reaction is triggered so quickly and powerfully, it becomes incumbent upon the therapist to teach clients to intervene with rapidly induced calm states. One must offer interventions that are suffi­ciently powerful to make it possible for them to reinterpret events more reasonably and to elicit greater control of inappropriate or excessively reactive responses. Simply providing insight or teaching them to reinterpret triggers by altering cognitive schemas alone is often insufficient. In my expe­rience, one must diffuse the stress response first before a change of interpre­tation of an event or reaction is possible. This understanding is fundamental to the successful treatment of over-reactive clients.

How Incorporating Hypnosis into Psychotherapy
Enhances Treatment Outcome

Clients experience a wide range of short- and long-term benefits when therapists combine hypnotherapeutic techniques with psychotherapy. Therapists can expect to see the following results in a relatively short period of time. Immediate Benefits to Clients Clients are better able to:

  • stop escalation of conflict with others
  • have tolerance when experiencing difficult emotions
  • handle a juxtaposition of different emotions
  • remain calm and flexible within stressful situations

Long-term Benefits to Clients In the long run, you can expect clients to experience:

  • more resiliency in the face of long-term stress/conflict
  • significant reduction in symptoms of anxiety disorders
  • increased maturity and spiritual development
  • greater receptivity to the wisdom of others
  • increased trust and connection with others and self
  • a healthier sense of self (self-esteem, productive perspective)
  • elevated positive affect

Therapists can find comfort in the fact that they will be in a much better position to bring about the types of deep and lasting changes that have long eluded them in the treatment of the over-reactive client by incorporating these tools into their standard psychotherapeutic practice.

I have been practicing psychotherapy since 1977 and have been studying hypnosis since 1981. I am consistently honored that my clients place their trust in me, and I have always endeavored to be as effective as possible with the people I treat. As a young psychologist, I had the good fortune of learning hypnosis from some excellent teach­ers, thereby gaining a powerful method of improving therapy outcome. I was pleased to discover that hypnosis shortened the duration of ther­apy and could incorporate and potentiate other therapeutic approaches. The relaxation component, typically inherent in the trance state, had a dramatic effect in itself—most every clinical complaint improved when the client was able to calm down. And since hypnosis can be a creative process for the therapist, incorporating analytical thinking, intuition, and the poetic use of language to create imagery, it has been a satisfy­ing endeavor, serving to mitigate burnout not only for me but for other overworked clinicians.

There are three types of readers for this book. One is psychotherapists with little or no training in hypnosis. These are clinicians with varied backgrounds and theoretical frameworks who wish to expand their skills in order to deliver more efficient and practical solutions to their over-reactive clients. A second group is clinicians who have had some train­ing and/or are in the process of getting trained in hypnosis. A third group consists of experienced hypnotherapists who could benefit from some fresh ideas.

Therapists with Little or No Training in Hypnosis

It is not necessary to have had formal training in hypnosis to master many of the tools in this book. However, as with any psychotherapeutic endeavor, the more training and experience a therapist has, the greater his or her competency and effectiveness will be. Thus this book can serve as a launching pad into the dynamic field of hypnosis. Clinicians who have had minimal training in hypnosis or guided imagery will benefit from this book because it provides a review and summary of standard hypnotic protocol, as well as specific scripts that can be used as templates to address affect dysregulation. Specifically, Chapter 3 addresses prelim­inary considerations such as combining the tools with other more stan­dard therapeutic approaches, structuring sessions, and designing and delivering customized scripts. Chapter 4 provides the keystone to stop­ping over-reactivity, including the Time Out tool and how to identify and interrupt the start of an over-reaction. Chapter 5 covers the funda­mentals of calming, focusing, and deepening a hypnotic state. Most therapists have had some exposure to these relaxation techniques as part of their training and should be able to easily incorporate them into their practice. Mastery of many of the other tools such as those found in Chapter 6 can be acquired with relative ease. Clinicians who find the tools useful in creating therapeutic change are encouraged to acquire training in clinical hypnosis. Excellent training is available through the American Society of Clinical Hypnosis, the Society for Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis, and the International Society of Hypnosis.

Intermediate-level Hypnotherapists

For therapists who are in the process of gaining mastery in hypnotherapy, this book offers new tools that can help their development. Chapter 6, which presents the core of the Toolbox, and Chapter 7, which focuses on rehearsal and transfer of tools, should be particularly useful. For those who are refining their skills in hypnosis, this book can resolve the ongo­ing dilemma that plagues so many beginning- and intermediate-level hypnotherapists. I call it the "What do I do when I get there?" dilemma because many therapists know how to lead a client into trance but don't know how to go further with hypnosis to work specifically with an indi­vidual client's needs. Chapters 8 through 11 are intended to help answer that question by providing readers with customized scripts that address a specific constellation of symptoms.

Experienced Hypnotherapists

For experienced hypnotherapists, the book provides applications of the­ories and hypnotic interventions that they may already know but with a different twist. While Chapters 4 and 5 can certainly serve as an excel­lent review of the basics for more experienced hypnotherapists, newer, more challenging material may be found in Chapter 6 as well as in the subsequent chapters in which a range of tools are applied to varying case studies. Chapter 7 focuses on rehearsal and transfer of therapeutic learning, a theme that is underemphasized in many books on hypnosis. Material that may be of special interest to experienced hypnotherapists includes:

  • a focus on teaching clients to master the tools
  • application of hypnosis with relationship therapy
  • a range of clinical applications, including severe anxiety disorders

The ultimate goal of this approach is to teach clients mastery of the affect regulation tools in order to decrease dependency on the ther­apist and to increase generalization of the results beyond the office. To this end, the foundational tools are presented that will empower clients to be able to help themselves whenever they sense the onset of an over-reaction outside the therapeutic setting. The Affect Regulation Toolbox also provides fresh tools and scripts to help address ongoing clinical challenges that are commonly seen in our practices. There is a distinct emphasis on what I have found to be especially effective hyp­notic language and phrasing. Chapters 10 and 11 will also be of inter­est as they present practical strategies for how to incorporate hypnotic tools into the treatment of relationships.

For all therapists reading this book, I cannot overemphasize the impor­tance of training clients to take time out to identify and interrupt the over­reaction, as covered in Chapter 4. Regardless of what clients are presenting as their therapeutic goals, therapists need to instill in them the importance of taking time out to interrupt habitual response pat­terns. On this note, even seasoned hypnotherapists would do well to review Chapter 4.

Another part of the process that hypnotherapists at all levels should note is the benefits of rehearsal as outlined in Chapter 7. Behavioral rehearsal requires the client to be proactive and involved. In many books on hypnosis and in training sessions, the need for clients to be proactive in their recovery is missing or at least underemphasized. Specifically, clients need to be trained in taking regular time out and practicing the tools when they are experiencing distressful emotional reactions, and these strategies can only be effective if they repeatedly practice the tech­niques on their own at home.

Please note that it's not necessary to use the tools in every session or for the entirety of any given session. Often a therapy session that has been spent using hypnosis is followed by a subsequent session in which attention is focused on client stories that need to be told, progress reports, impasses encountered, and other aspects of more traditional therapy. At other times, just a few minutes of internal focus with an abbreviated version of a tool can reinforce its use and emphasize a mes­sage to a client.

The toolbox is a compendium of resources for busy clinicians who want interventions that are practical and easy to teach. A significant benefit is that the tools are adaptable and can be individualized for each client. They can also be used as an adjunct to any psychotherapy modality.

Tools Are Highly Adaptable

Please note that the same tools can be used with all clients, and each tool can also be altered and individualized to best address a client's specific distress. How you use them will vary depending on the client's needs at any given moment in the session. Each client's unique history, expres­sions, and responses will guide you in adapting the tools for the perfect fit. For example, there is a category of tools that helps clients develop dual perspectives. Using these tools, clients come to recognize that it is possible to access two opposing thoughts and feelings in a situation. This concept could be applicable to someone with anxiety who can experi­ence transient fear, as well as trust that things will work out. A person who experiences excessive irritation with his or her partner can also access feelings of endearment and appreciation.

A particular tool can be altered to meet a client's needs by customiz­ing it using personal information that you know about the client such as previous successes, strengths, interests, or intellectual capacity. If the ther­apist observes the client reverting to over-reactivity in the middle of mar­ital counseling or when faced with exposure to a feared stimulus in the therapy session, he or she may be advised to take another time out and repeat the process. Further direction for how to select and/or adapt tools to fit the needs of your individual clients can be found in Chapter 3.

The Toolbox Provides an Adjunct to Other Forms of Therapy In addition, clients can benefit from other therapies such as cognitive-behavioral techniques by using concrete tools to reduce over-reactivity.

Bill O'Hanlon, a noted Ericksonian psychotherapist, compared the process of traditional psychotherapy to that of "attempting to nail jelly to a tree" (personal communication, July 9, 1989). As O'Hanlon aptly described it, working with traditional psychotherapy is challenging in its own right; therefore, one can see why an additional therapeutic tool such as hypnosis might be useful. These tools can also be paired quite effectively with other approaches such as Imago therapy for relation­ships, desensitization techniques, exposure therapy, and Ego State Therapy, to name a few. See Chapter 3 for further examples of how to combine the tools with other therapeutic approaches.

When a client experiences a resolution of issues, improved relation­ships, and overall success with the therapy, the therapist benefits, too. There is nothing more satisfying for a therapist than saying he or she can help someone and then being able to do it. This brings the ther­apist a great sense of relief and enhances both confidence and feelings of competence.

Overview of the Book: Chapter 1 provides an overview of the ways in which over-reactivity impacts the lives of clients and the benefits of using hypnotherapeutic focusing techniques. Since many therapists have not been given ade­quate training in neuroscience, Chapter 2 offers a brief review of basic biological psychology and how it relates to emotions and over-reactivity. Chapter 3 discusses how the tools complement other therapeutic approaches and offers preliminary guidelines to enhance the therapist's effective delivery of the tools, including psychoeducation, how to struc­ture the sessions to create an optimum environment, how to individual­ize the scripts with an emphasis on utilization, and how to manage roadblocks such as resistance and poor response. Chapters 4 through 7 present the Toolbox itself, which I have divided into four tiers. In Chapter 4, the reader is introduced to Tier 1, the fundamentals of the Toolbox, including the Time Out tool to interrupt over-reactions. Chapter 5 covers Tier 2, how to establish and deepen a state of calm, focused attention by incorporating several traditional hypnotic induc­tions. Readers first encounter the majority of the tools in Tier 3 of Chapter 6. This includes a detailed description of each technique cou­pled with suggested scripting. Chapter 7 focuses on Tier 4, rehearsal and transfer, and Chapters 8, 9, 10, and 11 apply the tools to case stud­ies in a variety of different therapeutic contexts, such as when working with anxiety disorders, marital and committed relationships, and other relationships (parent/child, co-worker, and friend). (It should be noted that the case studies presented are a combination of real cases, with clients' permission, and composite cases. In all cases, the names and other identifying information have been changed.) Chapter 12 focuses on roadblocks and challenges. Chapter 13 concludes the book, and the Appendix provides readers with a list of recommended reading, videos, and other resources for those who want to go deeper into the study of hypnotherapy.

My goal over the course of this book is to provide you with an array of tools to launch your clients out of the "reactivity rut" and into empowered, successful, joyful lives. I also hope that you will finally feel that deep satisfaction that other therapists have felt using the Toolbox, of providing the best therapy possible—that which comes from doing your heartfelt best using dynamic yet practical tools that will benefit your clients for the rest of their lives. The old aphorism, "Give a man a fish and feed him for a day. Teach him to fish and feed him for a life­time" couldn't be more true for these clients. Teaching them how to manage their own over-reactivity can bring about true and lasting transformation.

Trance and Treatment: Clinical Uses of Hypnosis 2nd Edition by Herbert Spiegel, David Spiegel (American Psychiatric Association) The structure of the book parallels the sequence of treatment in an encounter with a patient. In the first section, the phenomenon of hypnosis is defined and discussed in some detail. Then, the method for administering and scoring the HIP, a 5- to 10-minute clinical assessment procedure, is presented. This procedure is crucial in our evaluation of a patient for treatment.

In the second section, we present hypotheses and data relating performance on the HIP to personality style and psychopathology, along with a review of the pertinent literature and our own supporting re-search data. At this stage in the treatment session, the clinician is formulating hypotheses regarding the patient's characteristics and problems. He or she then can proceed to define a problem area suit-able for intervention. This process is discussed in detail in the third section of the book, from both a theoretical and a practical view-point. After we explore the thinking behind the construction of a treatment strategy using hypnosis, we discuss a series of strategies with clinical examples.

Some patients require more than brief treatment or are interested in undertaking intensive psychotherapy. We present a method for using the assessment of hypnotizability in selecting among the various types of treatment. Finally, special considerations in the psycho-therapy of the highly hypnotizable individual are discussed.

It is our hope that the flow of a typical evaluation and treatment session will be experienced in the process of reading the book. In structuring the book in this way, we wish to emphasize the assessment of hypnotizability in clinical work and the possibilities for constructing a treatment strategy that uses hypnosis in a way that excites involvement and improves outcome.

There has been growing interest in behavioral aspects of medical care over the past 25 years, as the public appetite for those aspects of medicine that have been labeled alternative or complementary continues to grow. According to an old adage of medicine, our job as doctors is to "cure rarely, relieve suffering often, and comfort al-ways." Yet, in the twentieth century, we in medicine rewrote that job description. Intoxicated by our success with antibiotics, immunization, and new surgical techniques, we began to believe that disease was a foe that could be vanquished and that the role of medicine should be conquest of disease: cure rather than care. Thus, our motto became "Cure always, relieve suffering if you have the time, and let someone else do the comforting." Laudable and important as the goal of curing is, it can never be the only goal of medicine. No matter how good our ability to prevent and treat medical illness be-comes, the death rate will always be one per person. Sooner or later, most people need medical and allied health care professionals to

help them cope with serious illness. Indeed, our very success in ex-tending the life span and rendering previously fatal illnesses such as diabetes, heart disease, and many kinds of cancers, chronic rather than terminal, has increased the population of people with serious illness. Thus, the need and appetite for techniques such as hypnosis that are effective in quickly reducing anxiety and pain and can enhance habit control and adherence to treatment regimens are rapidly increasing. Eisenberg et al. (1993) reported that the percentage of Americans who used some form of complementary or alternative medicine increased in the 1990s by 1% of the population per year. Some 42% of Americans now use some form of complementary or alternative medicine. Furthermore, Americans spent more out of pocket for complementary treatments than they did for mainstream outpatient or inpatient care (Eisenberg et al. 1998). People seek such complementary treatments primarily for pain and anxiety, problems that are often not handled well in main-stream medicine.

This interest has persisted despite the growing use of psychopharmacological treatments and the massive shift in psychiatry toward psychopharmacology and away from psychotherapy. Despite the in-creased effectiveness and safety of antidepressants, mood stabilizers, antianxiety agents, and antipsychotics, many patients prefer to use nonpharmacological techniques or to use them in conjunction with self-management skills. The bulk of individuals with real but less-severe adjustment problems may either obtain no help or be treated with medications that may be more powerful than they need or that do not address the problem at hand.

Hypnosis has occupied an unusual position in relation to both mainstream and complementary or, as it is now more often referred to, integrative medicine. It has a long history of being used both within and outside of medicine. The historian Henri Ellenberger (1970) points out that hypnosis represents the first Western conception of a psychotherapy, a talking interaction between doctor and patient that could lead to improvement: the "talking cure." Despite this long history of medical use, many in medicine consider hypnosis an alternative treatment. However, many in the alternative medicine world consider hypnosis a mainstream treatment, as evidenced by the fact that the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine considers hypnosis a treatment under their purview only when it is used with the intention of altering disease progression rather than managing symptoms. The efficacy of hypnosis in themanagement of symptoms is supported by a report of the National Institutes of Health Office of Technology Assessment that determined hypnosis to be of proven benefit in the treatment of pain, especially pain associated with cancer (NIH 1996). Thus, hypnosis has been both used, refused, and repositioned as a Western alternative treatment. Given the goal of integrative medicine (i.e., merging the best from both Eastern and Western nontraditional practices into main-stream Western medicine), hypnosis can and should play a pivotal role. The therapist can apply what has been learned about hypnotic control of the mind and brain to link a patient's mind and body, thus enhancing medical treatment by intensifying care, reducing suffering, and at times improving outcome.

Permissive or Ericksonian school and the Classical school of Hypnosis

There are two main schools of hypnosis - the Permissive or Ericksonian school and the Classical school. The former is named after the late Milton H. Erickson MD, an American psychiatrist. Milton Erickson died in1980, but his work still continues to be developed today, mainly under the category of 'Brief Therapy'. Hailed as the most influential hypnotherapist of our time, Milton Erickson explored an almost infinite variety of ways of inducing hypnotic trance. He was able to induce hypnotic trance almost without the subject's realizing it and because it was carried out without any ritual. Instead he used the sheer power of his language patterns and metaphors. A distinctive part of Milton Erickson's therapy was his use of teaching tales which, through shock, surprise or confusion - together with generous use of questions, puns and playful humor - helped people to see their situations in a completely new light. Milton Erickson's approach also differs from that of classical hypnosis in that it makes use of indirect, rather than direct, suggestion.

Classical hypnosis, also known as authoritarian hypnosis or direct hypnosis is generally the school of first choice for most professional clinicians. It involves a ritual or systematic induction of the individual into hypnosis, followed by direct suggestions to the subconscious to elicit the desired change. Hypnosis cannot be performed on any individual without their consent, this being the reason why many hypnotists say that all hypnosis is self-hypnosis.

Crown House Publishing publishes an eclectic mix of these very different approaches.

Analytical Hypnotherapy, Volume 1: Theoretical Principles by Jacquelyne A. Morison (Crown House Publishing) Analytical hypnotherapy is that branch of psychotherapy that investigates the client's innermost conflict, trauma and distress at the deepest psychic levels in order to bring about resolution and beneficial change. Essentially, this form of therapy is an insight-oriented method akin to psychodynamic methodology in that it draws out from the client that which is debilitating and unfruitful and that which hinders his/her personal development. Analytical hypnotherapy will allow the client, therefore, to grow emotionally, to mature psychically and to fulfill his/her own true potential in life. The practice of analytical hypnotherapy, moreover, will also embrace the field of humanistic psychology in that it seeks to assist the client to realize his/her own potential once intransigence and barriers to change have been lifted. Aspects of cognitive philosophy are also incorporated into analytical practice, because during the therapeutic process the client can begin to understand what governs his/her thinking processes.

Analytical Hypnotherapy-Theoretical Principles is essentially a reference book for the practitioner who wishes to gain a comprehensive understanding of the practice of analytical hypnotherapy. A reference book, by its very nature, encourages a dip-and-dive usage. The therapist may elect to extract from these pages the information and guidance that will be appropriate to his/her work and then to put the rest on ice for future study. In order to gain maximum benefit from this book, therefore, the practitioner should use it as a servant rather than a master.

The purpose and design of Analytical Hypnotherapy is to enlighten and to inspire the therapist within an eclectic discipline. The message behind the text invites the therapist to partake of the wisdom that is relevant to his/her practice, to expand his/her mind in order to embrace a more effective approach and to develop a unique and individual style when working with the client. The practitioner is neither being asked to swallow the doctrines contained within this book as if they were the gospel truth, nor being urged to apply techniques that are not in keeping with his/her individual style or personal belief structure. The therapist may, therefore, read and digest material that is new and exciting for him/her, or may wish to review matter that has previously been studied in order to refresh learning and, perhaps, gain a deeper understanding.

Analytical Hypnotherapy aims to encourage therapist rather than prescribe tenets based on unshakeable principles. When reading through the various therapeutic passages, questioning techniques, client profiling and general methodology liberally sprinkled throughout the book and its companion volume, Analytical Hypnotherapy Volume 2 - Practical Applications, the practitioner is advised to add his/her own brand of magic to that which is portrayed here. The therapist will be hereby besought to translate material into his/her own words rather than use the matter provided in a verbatim and, perhaps, lifeless fashion. Therapy is a creative art and not a rigid set of rules for methodology. The more creative and flexible the practitioner can be at work, the greater the number of cases that he/she will be able to handle with ease and facility.

 The Psychobiology of Gene Expression by Ernest Lawrence Rossi (Norton) Outlines the relationship between genes and human experience. The understandings of gene expression emerging from the Human Genome Project are setting the stage for a profound expansion of our understanding of life. We are just now beginning to learn how the brain, body, and genes interact in everyday life. Here, Ernest Rossi introduces the new science of psychosocial genomics and explores how it will profoundly change our understanding of the pathways of communication among mind, body, and spirit.

The new understanding of the relationships between gene expression and human experience emerging from the Human Genome Project is setting the stage for a profound expansion of our understanding of life. The new neuroscience discoveries about enriching life experiences, neurogenesis, and gene expression are poised to profoundly expand our understanding of psychotherapy and the holistic healing arts. We are just beginning to learn how the brain, the body, and our genes interact in ordinary everyday life to create our lives. Here, acclaimed author and pioneer of new approaches to mind-body communication Ernest Rossi introduces the new science of psychosocial genomics and explores how it will profoundly change our understanding of the pathways of communication among mind, body, and spirit. Integrating modern molecular medicine with traditional holistic healing art and spiritual rites, Rossi documents dramatically new approaches to optimize creativity in psychotherapy and therapeutic hypnosis with both individuals and groups.

Part I reviews significant leading-edge neuroscience research on the psychobiology of gene expression and neurogenesis that leads to a new vision of the role of consciousness and creativity in the humanities and the healing arts. Part II explores how to creatively facilitate the psychodynamics of gene expression, neurogenesis, and healing in therapeutic hypnosis, psychotherapy, and human relationships in general.

The Psychobiology of Gene Expression illustrates, step-by-step, how to facilitate the natural four-stage creative process on all levels from mind to molecule in our daily work of building a better brain. The book demonstrates how we can use our consciousness and our perception of free will to co-create ourselves in cooperation with nature. Rossi proposes practical approaches to optimize the natural cycles of gene expression in normal consciousness, sleep, dreaming, meditation, and the arts of daily living that are experienced by everyone. A case study spanning two chapters, containing dialog and explanatory commentary, brings the author's work to life and gives readers a deeper appreciation of its clinical application. Rossi's lucid writing style and vivid illustrations inspire this text with a new vision of the creative arts, humanities, and culture in facilitating the optimal development of health, performance, and consciousness.

Hypnotic Language: Its Structure and Use by John J. Burton and Bobby G. Bodenhamer (Crown House) We each shape our own reality. Perceptions and cognitive processes unique to each of us determine our individual perspective on the world, and we present to ourselves what we are programmed to see. But what if we could change our perceptions and cognitive processes and consequently our reality? One way of achieving this is by harnessing the power of hypnotic language. Hypnotic Language examines the structures of the hypnotic sentence, and the very cognitive dimensions that allow hypnotic language to be effective in changing our minds. Defining the three facets that allow the mind to be susceptible to hypnotic language patterns, Hypnotic Language puts these insights into practice in case examples that demonstrate the application and effect of hypnotic language. Teaching us how to create the most effective hypnotic scripts, it provides new language patterns that address beliefs, time orientation, perception, spiritual matters and states of mind, and devises new hypnotic language applications that emphasize the importance of Gestalt principles and cognitive factors. An invaluable resource for hypnotherapists, psychologists, NLP practitioners and counsellors, Hypnotic Language promotes a new and deeper understanding of hypnotic language, clearly defining the divide between the conscious and unconscious mind and those language paths that link the two. Providing a wealth of scripts for hypnotic trance, it presents innovative and original ways to induce cognitive change that enable you to access your unconscious mind and the infinite resources it holds.

The keynote of this book is to show and explain the elements of hypnotic language and how to blend and develop for healthy psychotherapeutic interventions. For anyone reading this title will become alert how many forms of persuasion are used to direct our judgments and even the constructs of a healthy self. The strength of this title is that it provides practical instruction and concrete exercises so that the mystification of need not be that hypnosis works or how it works but that it works so well we resist learning about it.

PSYCHOANALYSIS AND HYPNOSIS, Mental Health Library Series, Monograph, No 5 by Erika Fromm, Ph.D., and Michael R. Nash, Ph. D., foreword by David Spiegel, M.D. ($50.00, hardcover, International Universities Press ISBN 0823651819)

Psychoanalysis and hypnosis have been linked together from the very beginnings of psychoanalysis. Erika Fromm and Michael Nash reunite what was separated though not really divorced nearly a century ago: hypnosis and psychoanalysis. They present this exciting attempt in a clearly written, thoughtful and authoritative manner. In recent years, hypnosis has gone its own way. This pivotal volume, written by a pioneer and her expert colleague, makes available an excellent recently updated introduction of this significant disciplinary relationship. As Spiegel notes in his Foreword, there are three prominent and timely reasons this book is important: (1) renewed research, theoretical, and clinical interest in the unconscious; (2) concern about the possible effects of abuse and other traumas on repressed memories; (3) the increasing involvement of psychotherapy in economic regulation. "Hypnosis can be a tremendous facilitator of therapy."  In ten eminently clear and readable chapters, the authors demonstrate their thorough grounding in classical as well as contemporary psychoanalytic theories as they present the fundamentals of hypnotic technique and the uses of psychoanalysis in hypnoanalytic clinical work. As an alternative therapeutic modality and a research method, it behooves students, clinicians, teachers, and researchers to know of the history and more current advances and developments in the psychoanalytic use of hypnosis. The discussion of alternative hypnoanalytic techniques and their application in symptom relief and in the treatment of developmental deficits enriches and challenges the clinician’s repertoire. This relatively brief volume fulfills these tasks in an interesting and meaningful way. This book is a must read for all who try to understand and utilize the power and mechanisms of healing

About the Authors

Erika Fromm, Ph.D., is Professor Emeritus in the Department of Psychology and of the College of the University of Chicago. Dr. Fromm is Clinical Editor of the International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis and has given numerous invited continuing education workshops throughout the United States and Europe. The recipient of numerous awards, she is a Diplomate in Clinical Psychology, American Board of Examiners in Professional Psychology and a Diplomate in Clinical Hypnosis, American Board of Examiners in Professional Hypnosis. In addition, Dr. Fromm is a Past President of Division 30 (Psychological Hypnosis) of the American Psychological Association, Past President of the American Board of Psychological Hypnosis, and Past President of the Society for Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis.

Michael R. Nash, Ph.D., is Associate Professor at the University of Tennessee and is actively engaged in clinical training, research, and teaching. He is Editor elect of the International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis. Past President of Division 30 of the American Psychological Association, Dr. Nash is Fellow of both the Society for Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis and the American Psychological Association, and is a Diplomate of the American Board of Professional Psychology. He has published extensively on the effects of sexual abuse, short-term psychotherapy, and psychological regression. Dr. Nash is Co-Editor with Dr. Fromm of the classic text on experimental hypnosis, Contemporary Hypnosis Research, and his research and writings have earned him numerous awards.

A Classic Introduction to the Psychoanalytic Use of Hypnosis

THE NATURE OF HYPNOSIS ($30.00, cloth, International Universities Press, ISBN: 0823635007) includes the English translation of two German monographs. Uber das Wesen der Hypnose by Paul Schilder, published in Berlin by Julius Springer in 1921, with a second edition in 1922, is translated for the first time. Lehrbuch der Hypnose by Paul Schilder and Otto Kauders, published in Vienna and Berlin by Julius Springer in 1926 was translated by Simon Rothenberg and published under the title of Hypnosis in 1927 in New York and Washington, D.C. by The Nervous and Mental Disease Publishing Co. After the death of Paul Schilder in 1940, this book became out of print.

In 1950 when Otto Kauders visited this country to address the American Neurological Association he agreed to rewrite the Lehrbuch der Hypnose and have it translated for American publication. However, he died within the year after his return to Austria, before the work had been begun.

Consequently the translation of both monographs was arranged with the International Universities Press with Gerda Corvin as the translator. Instead of the considerable changes that Otto Kauders had contemplated to relate the material to modem psychosomatic concepts, no changes have been made. This book is important for its intrinsic and historical value; either of which would justify a close reading. The volume offers still basic insights into hypnosis and its early adaptation from a psychoanalytic perspective.

Part One
Part Two
A TEXTBOOK OF HYPNOSIS [by Paul Schilder and Otto Kauders]

Practical Guide to the Clinical Use of Hypnotherapy

CREATIVE SCRIPTS FOR HYPNOTHERAPY by Marlene E. Hunter ($28.95, paperback, 220 pages; Brunner/Mazel,
ISBN: 087630742X)

CREATIVE SCRIPTS FOR HYPNOTHERAPY is an impeccably organized handbook encompassing a vast selection of hypnotherapy scripts that have been successfully used and refined during Dr. Hunter’s 25 years of practice with physically and emotionally ailing patients. This book greatly expanded and updated is the revised version of the best-selling Daydreams for Discovery: A Manual for Hypnotherapists. This is an excellent collection of practical therapeutic techniques and metaphors covering a wide spectrum

of disorders encountered in a therapist’s office. They are clear, concise, and extremely valuable for their adaptability. Written to be easy to use, these scripts provide time-tested approaches for problems in the workplace, pain relief, psychosomatic disorders, fears and phobias, self-discovery, memory retrieval, ego strengthening, habit disorders, sexual difficulties, rehabilitation, and such problems of childhood as enuresis, learning disabilities, fears and night terrors, and asthma. The volume also provides a variety of induction and self-hypnosis techniques, as well as valuable suggestions for reducing resistance.

The book is designed with the author’s insightful comments appearing alongside each script. The spacious page format will enable therapists to make their own notes, whether they choose to use a script as is or alter it to fit a patient’s particular needs or their own unique style. This volume features numerous changes based on state-of-the-art research as well as a greatly expanded reference section and annotated bibliography. It also includes more case histories and in-depth information as to how and when to best use a particular script.

MARLENE E. HUNTER, M.D., F.C.F.P.(C), is a family physician in West Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. She is a past president of the Canadian Society of Clinical Hypnosis and is a fellow of the American Society of Clinical Hypnosis, as well as a past president. She has given workshops and seminars in 15 countries and is the author of Psych Yourself In: Hypnosis and Health, and the editor of Frontiers of Hypnosis.

THE HANDBOOK OF HYPNOTIC PHENOMENA IN PSYCHOTHERAPY by John H. Edgette, Psy.D., and Janet Sasson Edgette, Psy.D ($38.95, hardcover, Brunner/Mazel; ISBN: 0876307500)

Despite their clinical utility, hypnotic phenomena are vastly underutilized by therapists in their work with clients. Whether this is due to uncertainty about how to use specific techniques constructively, or how to elicit particular phenomena, or anxiety about not being able to obtain a desired result, this volume will guide therapists toward higher levels of clinical expertise.

By describing varied hypnotic phenomena and how they can be used as vehicles of intervention, THE HANDBOOK OF HYPNOTIC PHENOMENA IN PSYCHOTHERAPY takes the therapist beyond fundamental applications of hypnosis toward a broader, more sophisticated scope of practice. This immensely readable book addresses the selection, elicitation, and therapeutic use of more than a dozen hypnotic phenomena. It offers step-by-step instruction on eliciting such phenomena as age progression, hypnotic dreaming, anesthesia, negative and positive hallucination, hypermnesia, catalepsy, hypnotic deafness, among others. Moreover, the book includes precise instructions on how to use the phenomena manifested in trance to provide more focused, goal-oriented, and emotionally meaningful psychotherapy.

Numerous case examples vividly illustrate intervention with anxiety disorders, trauma and abuse, dissociative disorders, depression, marital and family problems, sports and creative performance, pain, psychotic symptomatology, and other conditions.

THE HANDBOOK OF HYPNOTIC PHENOMENA IN PSYCHOTHERAPY is designed to be a basic reference for therapists to use as a clinical resource to expand their conceptual understanding of hypnosis, and thus effectiveness in psychotherapy. There has long been a need for afresh perspective on the importance of hypnotic approaches in psychotherapy. Fortunately, the Edgettes have provides an excellent volume full of practical advice. THE HANDBOOK OF HYPNOTIC PHENOMENA IN PSYCHOTHERAPY is a comprehensive, scholarly exposition that is eminently practical and is sure to be of use to all hypnotherapists of all persuasions.

John H. Edgette, Psy.D., and Janet Sasson Edgette, Psy.D., are codirectors of the Milton H. Erickson Institute of Philadelphia. Both John and Janet have been on the faculty of the last four International Congresses on Ericksonian Approaches to Hypnosis and Psychotherapy and are frequently invited to teach workshops on Ericksonian hypnosis both nationally and internationally. Both have written widely and maintain private practices in psychotherapy, training, and supervision in the Philadelphia suburbs. John has edeted along with  William J. Matthews, the important annual: Current Thinking and Research in Brief Therapy: Solutions, Strategies, Narratives. Volume 1, Volume 2

NEW AGE HYPNOSIS BY Bruce Goldberg ($12.95, Paperback, 240 pages, Llewellyn Publications; ISBN 1567183204)

Written for the self-help oriented individual this volume takes the professional mystification out of using self hypnosis to facilitate self-transformation. Through applying these techniques one can make a dramatic change in one’s life today with the most powerful techniques of self-hypnosis available.

Under the guidance of a trained and experienced hypnotherapist, you will learn how to safely place yourself into a hypnotic trance and enter into various metaphysical experiences including past life regression, superconscious "mind taps," out-of-body travel, and soul plane ascension.

Upon completion of this book, you will be able to induce a hypnotic trance, deepen it, maximize a clinically beneficial state, and return to the normal waking state as a more spiritually evolved soul.

  • View past or future lives
  • Improve your sex life
  • Attract a soul mate
  • Contact departed loved ones and the souls of unborn children
  • Increase self confidence
  • Overcome shyness, overeating, and depression
  • Slow down the aging process
  • Meet your guardian angel
  • Heighten your psychic awareness
  • Leave your physical body
  • Increase your ability to earn and hold onto money
  • Strengthen your immune system
  • Eliminate bad habits and phobias

Dr. Goldberg received his hypnosis training In 1975 from The American Society of Clinical Hypnosis, which trains only licensed dentists, physicians, and psychologists in the use of hypnosis. He is the former president of both the Los Angeles Academy of Clinical Hypnosis and the Midatlantic Hypnotists Examining Council. Dr. Goldberg has been interviewed on Donahue, Oprah, Joan Rivers, CNN, CBS News and many other television and radio programs.

He is also the author of the international bestseller Past Lives, Future Lives as well as Soul Healing, The Search for Grace, Peaceful Transition, and Look Younger, Live Longer.

SELF-HYPNOSIS: The Complete Manual for Health and
Self-Change, by Brian M. Alman, Peter T. Lambrou ($22.95, 2nd Edition, Paperback, 304 pages; Brunner/Mazel; ISBN: 0876306504)

Hypnosis can help us help ourselves! Increase self-confidence, control pain, lose weight, stop smoking, relieve allergies, alleviate asthma, make better decisions, eliminate skin problems, overcome phobias, end sleep disturbances … these are among the proven ways self hypnosis can change your life. If you’ve grown tired of simply wishing for things to get better, open this book to a world of self-mastery and empowerment.

Drs. Brian Alman and Peter Lambrou bring their considerable professional experience to these pages, offering a clear and expert presentation of the essential steps of hypnosis and goal directed relaxation steps on the path to a happier, healthier lifestyle.

Real-life cases and actual scripts for self-induction make this book a resource of endless potential for the lay person and the professional, not simply to be read but to be experienced.

BRIAN M. ALMAN, PH.D., who received his degree in clinical psychology in 1979, became interested in self hypnosis because of his own back pain. Now his workshops are offered at numerous universities and medical institutions, and he has trained medical doctors and helping professionals all over the world. He is the creator of the popular training seminar, "Self-Hypnosis and NLP Strategies," and he is a best-selling author on the subject. Dr. Alman is in private practice in Leucadia, California.

PETER T. LAMBROU PH.D., is a respected psychotherapist and instructor. He is co-author of two books on the use of hypnosis and guided imagery for enhancing performance. Dr. Lambrou is well known throughout Southern California by university and lay audiences as a teacher and lecturer on hypnosis.

TRANCE-FORMATIONS: Neuro-Linguistic Programming and the Structure of Hypnosis, by John Grinder and Richard Bandler. ($19.50; 250 pp. 1981 hardcover;  Paper $13.50; Real people Press)

Grinder and Bandler, the major innovators of NLP, offer this transcription of a three day seminar about hypnosis. They immediately launch into an argument about whether there is such a thing, and what it might be if there were. They show through practical exercises and demonstrations that a lot of what we know is about hypnosis under other names, or under no name at all. They show how to discover that certain experiences many of have had are really excellent examples of altered states of consciousness.

They show how hypnotic patterning might be useful and effective for anyone in whatever area they practice, whether it’ is psychotherapy, management, education, nursing, sales, or something else. They also show how new choices hypnotic patterning can add zest and variety to anyone’s present repertoire to become even more effective in their practice. Also these skills offer approaches to self-change in short order. This study maintains a practical focus and is a useful primer to clinicians as well as anyone with an interest how to use the mind to create positive change in ones life.

SELF-HYPNOSIS FOR A BETTER LIFE: by William W. Hewitt ($9.95, paper, 240 pages; Llewellyn; 1-56718-358-1)

SELF-HYPNOSIS FOR A BETTER LIFE presents a breakthrough techniques that teach how to harness the power and potential of one’s own voice for a better life. If you have ever tried hypnosis tapes before and been disappointed with the results, it is probably because they were not recorded with your voice. Using this system, you become your own hypnotherapist, you design your own self-improvement program, and you make it happen.

SELF-HYPNOSIS FOR A BETTER LIFE comes complete with instructions so you can get started right away. Anyone can begin using this system in minutes. Simply make yourself comfortable and recite one of the book’s 23 ready-made scripts into a tape recorder. Then whenever you feel like it, pop in the tape, close your eyes, and allow your own voice to hypnotize you as you learn to stop smoking, control fear and phobias, reduce stress, overcome health problems, lose weight, end insomnia, find love and much more.

William W. Hewitt is a freelance writer, the author of eight books and several hypnosis audio tapes published by Llewellyn. He spent more than thirty years as a professional writer and editor in the computer, nuclear power and mining industries. He is a certified clinical hypnotherapist and frequently lectures on hypnosis, mind power, self-improvement, metaphysics, and related subjects.

The great thing about this simplified approach is that one becomes an active partner in any program of self-change immediately.


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