When we understand what hypnosis is we will find that hypnosis has been around in some form since time began, for instance animals when hibernating will turn inwards and are able to exist for long periods without sustenance, the caveman staring into the fire, his focus of attention is narrowed down to the flames flickering in the darkness of the cave which cause him to go into a trance like state.
No one really knows for certain when the actual practice of hypnosis started, although the earliest written references to the use of hypnosis date back to the times of the Egyptian sleep temples and Greek religious centres where people came for help with their problems.
The word Hypnosis comes from the Greek word Hypnos which means sleep, though the actual state of hypnosis is very different from sleep.
Hypnosis is a natural state of mind which we experience every day and many times during the day, if ever you have sat down to relax and watch your favourite TV programme, then you have experienced hypnosis, you become engrossed on what is happening on the TV to the point where you start to become less aware of what is happening around you, you shut it out. You may even reach a deeper level of hypnosis as you start to “nod off” but you can still hear what is being said, and should anything happen unexpectedly you would simply open your eyes.
Hypnosis is that gap between wake and sleep, no one just suddenly falls asleep, we all go through a gradual process of drifting down into sleep where we enter what is called the Hypnopompic State and when we wake up we gradually drift up from sleep through the Hypnogogic State.