Mind Control. Brainwashing. Hypnosis.

Searching in youtube.com for information and ideas about Hypnosis I found several Pastors that talk against Hypnosis and Acupuncture. One person has a a video called “Hypnosis in the Church, Mind Control, Brainwashing to Keep the Masses Coming”.

Let’s start for defining those three. I’m going to use one source … Wikipedia.

Mind control (also known as brainwashing, reeducation, brainsweeping, coercive persuasion, thought control, or thought reform) is a theory that human subjects can be indoctrinated in a way that causes “an impairment of autonomy, an inability to think independently, and a disruption of beliefs and affiliations. Mind control – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mind_control

Brainwashed may refer to: Brainwashing, to affect a person’s mind by using extreme mental pressure or any other mind-affecting process. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brainwashed

Hypnosis is a state of human consciousness involving focused attention and reduced peripheral awareness and an enhanced capacity for response to suggestion. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypnosis

The author of the video mentioned above has reason when she said that those three are used in churches. Sometimes on purpose … other just the charisma and personality of the Pastor., Minister or Priest. The funny thing is that many Pastors who talk against Hypnosis for example, use principles very similar to hypnosis with their followers.

One comment in youtube.com says that you should never let anyone touch you in the forehead, because that’s a way of controlling your mind. This statement is totally false. If you watch a Stage Hypnosis video you will see that some hypnotists use the touching in the forehead, but it is not to control the participant.

The same way you will watch Pastors doing exactly the same thing.

So what’s the goal of touching someone in the forehead?


In hypnosis sometime “confusion” is used to bypass the Critical Factor. Is not something bad, and is not that by bypassing the CF you will be under the control of the hypnotist, but you will be more open to suggestions.

Your subconscious mind can be accessed using different techniques. You can use drugs. You can use physical pain, torture, coercive persuasion as in brainwashing. You can use pleasure.

To access your subconscious you need to bypass what we call The Critical Factor. Is not really a physical part. It is the part of your mind that decides what you take as true or not. Mind Control, Brainwashing and Hypnosis need to bypass that CF to access your subconscious.

One point here. You access your subconscious many times during the day, but usually you are not trying to change something so bypassing the Critical Factor is not a problem.

Mind Control and Brainwashing have as goal to make you believe someone else’s truth. In reality none can “Control” your mind, from the point of vue of having a especial power to control you. But we are social beings and we love to be part of a group that believe what we believe and therefore you allow others to control your mind because it is easy for you/us.

Hypnosis, Hypnotherapy and Neurolinguistic Program goal is to help you create positive beliefs that will help you reach your goals.

If a client comes to my office my goal is to help that person. My goals is not to control the mind of the person, or that person believe everything I believe. Hypnosis is not mind control. There is “brainwashing” in the sense that sometimes you need to clean up your mind from false beliefs.

Let’s say you smoke … in a moment in your life, you started to believe that smoking was good, or cool. When you want to quit smoking and you say to yourself “I’m quitting smoking cigarettes today.” Your Critical Factor, will jump (figuratively speaking) and tell you “No, you are not quitting … smoking is good for you. It is cool”.

That’s the belief you have in you subconscious and that’s why quit smoking using only willpower is difficult. Hypnosis will change that belief to … “being smoking free, is healthy, good and cool.”
So as you can see those three have some common grounds but also differences. It is true that many Pastors, Ministers, Priests use them for their own agenda.

We live in a world where there is always someone trying to convince us of something … I’m trying to convince you that Hypnosis is positive, Mind Control and Brainwashing are negatives.

To me the bad thing is when for example Pastors that use some of the principles of Hypnosis, criticize Hypnosis as something bad or diabolic, probably because they don’t want you to think by yourself.

Gangs, for example, use Mind Control and Brainwashing using physical and psychological techniques to convince their followers.

Is all about attention, suggestion and rapport.

Mind Control and Brainwashing are bad when we are make believe something false. You could see this in Hitler for example or when religious cults make believe their followers that killing or hating is God’s wish.
Brainwashing is good for example, when is used to clean the brain from false beliefs. Now the problem here is … “false beliefs according to whom?”. It has been used for example to help people who were brainwashed by cults or gangs.

When you change religion or political party, for example. Technically you have been brainwashed that your old beliefs were false and the new ones are truth. Now in most cases the brainwashing has been done using rapport, attention and suggestion. Convincing you that you were wrong before and you are correct now.

Hypnosis is good when I’m help you stop biting your nails, or stop smoking, or creating positive changes in your life.

NLP Hypnosis Centre Office in London, Ontario
NLP Hypnosis Centre Office. London, Ontario.

The same … rapport, attention and suggestion come to play. I pay attention to you, what you want to accomplish. I establish a rapport with you, so you trust and understand that hypnosis is positive and safe. I use different hypnosis “suggestions” to help you.

To me the major critique I do is the fact that many religious criticize and demonize something that they also use … like suggestion and persuasion. Of course I realize why they do it. They don’t want you to think by yourself, but to blindly follow.

Again … do not believe what I say, just go and do a search for Stage Hypnosis, Conversational Hypnosis and Pastors or Ministers preaching in youtube.com and you will see what I mean.

I believe that learning to influence, to communicate, to have a better rapport is good in any profession. I disagree when the knowledge is used to manipulate the truth or manipulate others into false beliefs.

Olivier Hidalgo