In the realm of hypnosis and hypnotherapy, the HypnoScience® research project, initiated by OMNI Hypnosis International in collaboration with the University of Zurich, ventures into uncharted territory. This ambitious endeavor aims to illuminate the mysteries of hypnosis by exploring the various hypnotic states and their underlying mechanisms of action. This pioneering work aims not only to establish hypnosis and hypnotherapy but also to promote their global acceptance.

Foundations of Hypnosis Research

This study, conducted by independent scientists at the University of Zurich and approved by the Ethics Committee of the Canton of Zurich, Switzerland (BASEC No. 2018-00550), was published on December 19, 2023, in the prestigious journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience. The study impressively demonstrates that hypnosis is not only visible and measurable in the brain but also that at least two distinct hypnotic states exist: somnambulism and the Esdaile state.

Insights into Hypnotic States

Utilizing multimodal research methods, researchers gained deep insights into the complex processes occurring in the brain during hypnosis. Particularly revealing was the discovery that OMNI hypnosis inductions, based on the methods of Dave Elman and Gerald Kein, cause significant changes in the brain’s functional connectivity, as visualized through MRI scans.

Parallels and Perspectives

Interestingly, the research showed parallels between brain patterns in somnambulism and those under the influence of Propofol anesthesia. Altered bodily perceptions in the Esdaile state were also observed, similar to those experienced under LSD. These findings open new perspectives in hypnosis research and underscore the need for further studies to confirm these fascinating hypotheses.

Significance for Practice

These groundbreaking results have far-reaching implications for practice and training methods in hypnotherapy. By underpinning the scientific foundation and efficacy of OMNI approaches, they pave the way for new possibilities in hypnotherapy within healthcare, establishing it as an indispensable tool in modern medicine.

The study and the HypnoScience® project exemplify the effort to unravel the mysteries of hypnosis and pursue an evidence-based approach in hypnotherapy. It marks a milestone in the scientific exploration of hypnosis and a shining example of the fruits of collaboration between academic research and practical application. Not only does it expand our understanding of hypnosis, but it also strengthens its role in therapy. Each day that hypnosis and hypnotherapy are further validated and understood through solid research, we move closer to making these powerful tools accessible and recognized – for the benefit of therapists and clients worldwide.

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