The Battle for Your Mind
by Dick Sutphen
Persuasion and Brainwashing Techniques
Being Used On The Public Today
Reformatted for WWW display and distribution by Dynamic
Summary Of Contents
I'm Dick Sutphen and this tape is a studio-recorded, expanded version
of a talk I delivered at the World Congress of Professional Hypnotists
Convention in Las Vegas, Nevada. Although the tape carries a copyright
to protect it from unlawful duplication for sale by other companies, in
this case, I invite individuals to make copies and give them to friends
or anyone in a position to communicate this information.
Although I've been interviewed about the subject on many local and regional
radio and TV talk shows, large-scale mass communication appears to be blocked,
since it could result in suspicion or investigation of the very media presenting
it or the sponsors that support the media. Some government agencies do
not want this information generally known. Nor do the Born-Again Christian
movement, cults, and many human-potential trainings.
Everything I will relate only exposes the surface of the problem. I
don't know how the misuse of these techniques can be stopped. I don't think
it is possible to legislate against that which often cannot be detected;
and if those who legislate are using these techniques, there is little
hope of affecting laws to govern usage. I do know that the first step to
initiate change is to generate interest. In this case, that will probably
only result from an underground effort.
In talking about this subject, I am talking about my own business. I
know it, and I know how effective it can be. I produce hypnosis and subliminal
tapes and, in some of my seminars, I use conversion tactics to assist participants
to become independent and self-sufficient. But, anytime I use these techniques,
I point out that I am using them, and those attending have a choice to
participate or not. They also know what the desired result of participation
So, to begin, I want to state the most basic of all facts about brainwashing:
In the entire history of man, no one has ever been brainwashed and realized,
or believed, that he had been brainwashed. Those who have been brainwashed
will usually passionately defend their manipulators, claiming they have
simply been "shown the light" ...or have been transformed in
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The Birth of Conversion:
Brainwashing in Christian Revivalism in 1735.
Conversion is a "nice" word for brainwashing...and
any study of brainwashing has to begin with a study of Christian revivalism
in eighteenth century America. Apparently, Jonathan Edwards accidentally
discovered the techniques during a religious crusade in 1735 in Northampton,
Massachusetts. By inducing guilt and acute apprehension and by increasing
the tension, the "sinners" attending his revival meetings would
break down and completely submit. Technically, what Edwards was doing was
creating conditions that wipe the brain slate clean so that the mind accepts
new programming. The problem was that the new input was negative. He would
tell them, "You're a sinner! You're destined for hell!"
As a result, one person committed suicide and another attempted suicide.
And the neighbors of the suicidal converts related that they, too, were
affected so deeply that, although they had found "eternal salvation,"
they were obsessed with a diabolical temptation to end their own lives.
Once a preacher, cult leader, manipulator or authority figure creates
the brain phase to wipe the brain-slate clean, his subjects are wide open.
New input, in the form of suggestion, can be substituted for their previous
ideas. Because Edwards didn't turn his message positive until the end of
the revival, many accepted the negative suggestions and acted, or desired
to act, upon them.
Charles J. Finney was another Christian revivalist who used the same
techniques four years later in mass religious conversions in New York.
The techniques are still being used today by Christian revivalists, cults,
human-potential trainings, some business rallies, and the United States
Armed services...to name just a few.
Let me point out here that I don't think most revivalist preachers realize
or know they are using brainwashing techniques. Edwards simply stumbled
upon a technique that really worked, and others copied it and have continued
to copy it for over two hundred years. And the more sophisticated our knowledge
and technology become, the more effective the conversion. I feel strongly
that this is one of the major reasons for the increasing rise in Christian
fundamentalism, especially the televised variety, while most of the orthodox
religions are declining.
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The Three Brain Phases: The Pavlovian
The Christians may have been the first to successfully formulate brainwashing,
but we have to look to Pavlov, the Russian scientist, for a technical explanation.
In the early 1900s, his work with animals opened the door to further investigations
with humans. After the revolution in Russia, Lenin was quick to see the
potential of applying Pavlov's research to his own ends.
Three distinct and progressive states of transmarginal inhibition were
identified by Pavlov. The first is the equivalent phase, in which
the brain gives the same response to both strong and weak stimuli. The
second is the paradoxical phase, in which the brain responds more
actively to weak stimuli than to strong. And the third is the ultra-paradoxical
phase, in which conditioned responses and behavior patterns turn from positive
to negative or from negative to positive.
With the progression through each phase, the degree of conversion becomes
more effective and complete. The way to achieve conversion are many and
varied, but the usual first step in religious or political brainwashing
is to work on the emotions of an individual or group until they reach an
abnormal level of anger, fear, exitement, or nervous tension.
The progressive result of this mental condition is to impair judgement
and increase suggestibility. The more this condition can be maintained
or intensified, the more it compounds. Once catharsis, or the first brain
phase, is reached, the complete mental takeover becomes easier. Existing
mental programming can be replaced with new patterns of thinking and behavior.
Other often-used physiological weapons to modify normal brain functions
are fasting, radical or high sugar diets, physical discomforts, regulation
of breathing, mantra chanting in meditation, the disclosure of awesome
mysteries, special lighting and sound effects, programmed response to incense,
or intoxicating drugs.
The same results can be obtained in contemporary psychiatric treatment
by electric shock treatments and even by purposely lowering a person's
blood sugar level with insulin injections.
Before I talk about exactly how some of the techniques are applied,
I want to point out that hypnosis and conversion tactics are two distinctly
different things--and that conversion techniques are far more powerful.
However, the two are often mixed...with powerful results.
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How Revivalist Preachers Work
If you'd like to see a revivalist preacher at work, there are probably
several in your city. Go to the church or tent early and sit in the rear,
about three-quarters of the way back. Most likely repetitive music will
be played while the people come in for the service. A repetitive beat,
ideally ranging from 45 to 72 beats per minute (a rhythm close to the beat
of the human heart), is very hypnotic and can generate an eyes-open altered
state of consciousness in a very high percentage of people. And, once you
are in an alpha state, you are at least 25 times as suggestible as you
would be in full beta consciousness. The music is probably the same for
every service, or incorporates the same beat, and many of the people will
go into an altered state almost immediately upon entering the sanctuary.
Subconsciously, they recall their state of mind from previous services
and respond according to the post-hypnotic programming.
Watch the people waiting for the service to begin. Many will exhibit
external signs of trance--body relaxation and slightly dilated eyes. Often,
they begin swaying back and forth with their hands in the air while sitting
in their chairs. Next, the assistant pastor will probably come out. He
usually speaks with a pretty good "voice roll."
The "Voice Roll" Technique
A "voice roll" is a patterned, paced style used by hypnotists
when inducing a trance. It is also used by many lawyers, several of whom
are highly trained hypnotists, when they desire to entrench a point firmly
in the minds of the jurors. A voice roll can sound as if the speaker were
talking to the beat of a metronome or it may sound as though he were emphasizing
every word in a monotonous, patterned style. The words will usually be
delivered at the rate of 45 to 60 beats per minute, maximizing the hypnotic
The Build-up Process: Inducing Altered States
Now the assistant pastor begins the "build-up" process. He
induces an altered state of consciousness and/or begins to generate the
excitement and the expectations of the audience. Next, a group of young
women in "sweet and pure" chiffon dresses might come out to sing
a song. Gospel songs are great for building excitement and involvement.
In the middle of the song, one of the girls might be "smitten by the
spirit" and fall down or react as if possessed by the Holy Spirit.
This very effectively increases the intensity in the room. At this point,
hypnosis and conversion tactics are being mixed. And the result is the
audience's attention span is now totally focused upon the communication
while the environment becomes more exciting or tense.
Assured Continuation: Fleecing the Flock
Right about this time, when an eyes-open mass-induced alpha mental state
has been achieved, they will usually pass the collection plate or basket.
In the background, a 45-beat-per-minute voice roll from the assistant preacher
might exhort, "Give to God...Give to God...Give to God...." And
the audience does give. God may not get the money, but his already-wealthy
Bonding by Fear and Suggestion
Next, the fire-and-brimstone preacher will come out. He induces fear
and increases the tension by talking about "the devil," "going
to hell," or the forthcoming Armegeddon.
In the last such rally I attended, the preacher talked about the blood
that would soon be running out of every faucet in the land. He was also
obsessed with a "bloody axe of God," which everyone had seen
hanging above the pulpit the previous week. I have no doubt that everyone
saw it--the power of suggestion given to hundreds of people in hypnosis
assures that at least 10 to 25 percent would see whatever he suggested
Testimony: Creating Community Spirit
In most revivalist gatherings, "testifying" or "witnessing"
usually follows the fear-based sermon. People from the audience come up
on stage and relate their stories. "I was crippled and now I can walk!"
"I had arthritis and now it's gone!" It is a psychological manipulation
that works. After listening to numerous case histories of miraculous healings,
the average guy in the audience with a minor problem is sure he can be
healed. The room is charged with fear, guilt, intense excitement, and expectations.
Now those who want to be healed are frequently lined up around the edge
of the room, or they are told to come down to the front. The preacher might
touch them on the head firmly and scream, "Be healed!" This releases
the psychic energy and, for many, catharsis results. Catharsis is a purging
of repressed emotions. Individuals might cry, fall down or even go into
spasms. And if catharsis is effected, they stand a chance of being healed.
In catharsis (one of the three brain phases mentioned earlier), the brain-slate
is temporarily wiped clean and the new suggestion is accepted.
For some, the healing may be permanent. For many, it will last four
days to a week, which is, incidentally, how long a hypnotic suggestion
given to a somnambulistic subject will usually last. Even if the healing
doesn't last, if they come back every week, the power of suggestion may
continually override the problem...or sometimes, sadly, it can mask a physical
problem which could prove to be very detrimental to the individual in the
The Grey Area of Legitimacy
I'm not saying that legitimate healings do not take place. They do.
Maybe the individual was ready to let go of the negativity that caused
the problem in the first place; maybe it was the work of God. Yet I contend
that it can be explained with existing knowledge of brain/mind function.
A Game in Which the Rules Keep Changing
The techniques and staging will vary from church to church. Many use
"speaking in tongues" to generate catharsis in some while the
spectacle creates intense excitement in the observers.
The use of hypnotic techniques by religions is sophisticated, and professionals
are assuring that they become even more effective. A man in Los Angeles
is designing, building, and reworking a lot of churches around the country.
He tells ministers what they need and how to use it. This man's track record
indicates that the congregation and the monetary income will double if
the minister follows his instructions. He admits that about 80 percent
of his efforts are in the sound system and lighting.
Powerful sound and the proper use of lighting are of primary importance
in inducing an altered state of consciousnes--I've been using them for
years in my own seminars. However, my participants are fully aware of the
process and what they can expect as a result of their participation.
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Six Conversion Techniques
Cults and human-potential organizations are always looking for new converts.
To attain them, they must also create a brain-phase. And they often need
to do it within a short space of time--a weekend, or maybe even a day.
The following are the six primary techniques used to generate the conversion.
Isolation Intimidation, Deprivation and Indoctrination
The meeting or training takes place in an area where participants are
cut off from the outside world. This may be any place: a private home,
a remote or rural setting, or even a hotel ballroom where the participants
are allowed only limited bathroom usage. In human-potential trainings,
the controllers will give a lengthy talk about the importance of "keeping
agreements" in life. The participants are told that if they don't
keep agreements, their life will never work. It's a good idea to keep agreements,
but the controllers are subverting a positive human value for selfish purposes.
The participants vow to themselves and their trainer that they will keep
their agreements. Anyone who does not will be intimidated into agreement
or forced to leave. The next step is to agree to complete training, thus
assuring a high percentage of conversions for the organizations.
They will usually have to agree not to take drugs, smoke, and
sometimes not to eat...or they are given such short meal breaks that it
creates tension. The real reason for the agreements is to alter internal
chemistry, which generates anxiety and hopefully causes at least a slight
malfunction of the nervous system, which in turn increases the conversion
The "Sell It By Zealot" Technique.
Before the gathering is complete, the agreements will be used to ensure
that the new converts go out and find new participants. They are intimidated
into agreeing to do so before they leave. Since the importance of keeping
agreements is so high on their priority list, the converts will twist the
arms of everyone they know, attempting to talk them into attending a free
introductory session offered at a future date by the organization. The
new converts are zealots. In fact, the inside term for merchandising the
largest and most successful human-potential training is, "sell it
At least a million people are graduates and a good percentage have been
left with a mental activation button that assures their future loyalty
and assistance if the guru figure or organization calls. Think about the
potential political implications of hundreds of thousands of zealots programmed
to campaign for their guru.
Be wary of an organization of this type that offers follow-up sessions
after the seminar. Follow-up sessions might be weekly meetings or inexpensive
seminars given on a regular basis which the organization will attempt to
talk you into taking--or any regularly scheduled event used to maintain
control. As the early Christian revivalists found, long-term control is
dependent upon a good follow-up system.
Wearing Down Resistance
Alright. Now, let's look at the second tip-off that indicates conversion
tactics are being used. A schedule is maintained that causes physical and
mental fatigue. This is primarily accomplished by long hours in which the
participants are given no opportunity for relaxation or reflection.
The third tip-off: techniques used to increase the tension in the room
Introducing Uncertainty About Identity
Number four: Uncertainty. I could spend hours relating various techniques
to increase tension and generate uncertainty. Basically, the participants
are concerned about being "put on the spot" or encountered by
the trainers, guilt feelings are played upon, participants are tempted
to verbally relate their innermost secrets to the other participants or
forced to take part in activities that emphasize removing their masks.
One of the most successful human-potential seminars forces the participants
to stand on a stage in front of the entire audience while being verbally
attacked by the trainers. A public opinion poll, conducted a few years
ago, showed that the number one most-fearful situation an individual could
encounter is to speak to an audience. It ranked above window washing outside
the 85th floor of an office building.
So you can imagine the fear and tension this situation generates within
the participants. Many faint, but most cope with the stress by mentally
going away. They literally go into an alpha state, which automatically
makes them many times as suggestible as they normally are. And another
loop of the downward spiral into conversion is successfully effected.
The fifth clue that conversion tactics are being used is the introduction
of jargon--new terms that have meaning only to the "insiders"
who participate. Vicious language is also frequently used, purposely, to
make participants uncomfortable.
Lack of Humor: No Release, No Resistance
The final tip-off is that there is no humor in the communications...at
least until the participants are converted. Then, merry-making and humor
are highly desirable as symbols of the new joy the participants have supposedly
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Not Always a Bad Thing
I'm not saying that good does not result from participation in such
gatherings. It can and does. But I contend it is important for people to
know what has happened and to be aware that continual involvement may not
be in their best interest.
Over the years, I've conducted professional seminars to teach people
to be hypnotists, trainers, and counselors. I've had many of those who
conduct trainings and rallies come to me and say, "I'm here because
I know that what I'm doing works, but I don't know why." After showing
them how and why, many have gotten out of the business or have decided
to approach it differently or in a much more loving and supportive manner.
Many of these trainers have become personal friends, and it scares us
all to have experienced the power of one person with a microphone and a
room full of people. Add a little charisma and you can count on a high
percentage of conversions. The sad truth is that a high percentage of people
want to give away their power--they are true "believers"!
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Cults: A Captive Course in Stockholm Syndrome
Cult gatherings or human-potential trainings are an ideal environment
to observe first-hand what is technically called the "Stockholm Syndrome."
This is a situation in which those who are intimidated, controlled, or
made to suffer, begin to love, admire, and even sometimes sexually desire
their controllers or captors.
But let me inject a word of warning here: If you think you can attend
such gatherings and not be affected, you are probably wrong. A perfect
example is the case of a woman who went to Haiti on a Guggenheim Fellowship
to study Haitian Voodoo. In her report, she related how the music eventually
induced uncontrollable bodily movement and an altered state of consciousness.
Although she understood the process and thought herself above it, when
she began to feel herself become vulnerable to the music, she attempted
to fight it and turned away. Anger or resistance almost always assures
conversion. A few moments later she was possessed by the music and began
dancing in a trance around the Voodoo meeting house. A brain phase had
been induced by the music and excitement, and she awoke feeling reborn.
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The Only Hope of Immunity
The only hope of attending such gatherings without being affected is
to be a Buddha and allow no positive or negative emotions to surface. Few
people are capable of such detachment.
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The US Marines as a Brainwashing Cult
Before I go on, let's go back to the six tip-offs to conversion. I want
to mention the United States Government and military boot camp. The Marine
Corps talks about breaking men down before "rebuilding" them
as new men--as marines! Well, that is exactly what they do, the same way
a cult breaks its people down and rebuilds them as happy flower sellers
on your local street corner. Every one of the six conversion techniques
are used in boot camp. Considering the needs of the military, I'm not making
a judgement as to whether that is good or bad. IT IS A fact that
the men are effectively brainwashed. Those who won't submit must be discharged
or spend much of their time in the brig.
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Steps in the Decognition Process
Once the initial conversion is effected, cults, armed services, and
similar groups cannot have cynicism among their members. Members must respond
to commands and do as they are told, otherwise they are dangerous to the
organizational control. This is normally accomplished as a three-step ˜
Step One is alertness reduction: The controllers cause the nervous
system to malfunction, making it difficult to distinguish between fantasy
and reality. This can be accomplished in several ways. poor diet
is one; watch out for Brownies and Koolaid. The sugar throws the nervous
system off. More subtle is the "spiritual diet" used by
many cults. They eat only vegetables and fruits; without the grounding
of grains, nuts, seeds, dairy products, fish or meat, an individual becomes
mentally "spacey." Inadequate sleep is another primary
way to reduce alertness, especially when combined with long hours of work
or intense physical activity. Also, being bombarded with intense and unique
experiences achieves the same result.
Step Two is programmed confusion: You are mentally assaulted
while your alertness is being reduced as in Step One. This is accomplished
with a deluge of new information, lectures, discussion groups, encounters
or one-to-one processing, which usually amounts to the controller bombarding
the individual with questions. During this phase of decognition, reality
and illusion often merge and perverted logic is likely to be accepted.
Step Three is thought stopping: Techniques are used to cause
the mind to go "flat." These are altered-state-of-consciousness
techniques that initially induce calmness by giving the mind something
simple to deal with and focusing awareness. The continued use brings on
a feeling of elation and eventually hallucination. The result is the reduction
of thought and eventually, if used long enough, the cessation of all thought
and withdrawal from everyone and everything except that which the controllers
direct. The takeover is then complete. It is important to be aware that
when members or participants are instructed to use "thought-stopping"
techniques, they are told that they will benefit by so doing: they will
become "better soldiers" or "find enlightenment."
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Thought Stopping Techniques
There are three primary techniques used for thought stopping. The first
is marching: the thump, thump, thump beat literally generates self-hypnosis
and thus great susceptibility to suggestion.
The second thought stopping technique is meditation. If you spend
an hour to an hour and a half a day in meditation, after a few weeks, there
is a great probability that you will not return to full beta consciousness.
You will remain in a fixed state of alpha for as long as you continue to
meditate. I'm not saying this is bad--if you do it yourself. It may be
very beneficial. But it is a fact that you are causing your mind to go
flat. I've worked with meditators on an EEG machine and the results are
conclusive: the more you meditate, the flatter your mind becomes until,
eventually and especially if used to excess or in combination with decognition,
all thought ceases. Some spiritual groups see this as nirvana--which is
bullshit. It is simply a predictable physiological result. And if heaven
on earth is non-thinking and non-involvement, I really question why we
The third thought-stopping technique is chanting, and often chanting
in meditation. "Speaking in tongues" could also be included in
All three-stopping techniques produce an altered state of consciousness.
This may be very good if you are controlling the process, for you
also control the input. I personally use at least one self-hypnosis programming
session every day and I know how beneficial it is for me. But you need
to know if you use these techniques to the degree of remaining continually
in alpha that, although you'll be very mellow, you'll also be more suggestible.
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True Believers and Mass Movements
Before ending this section on conversion, I want to talk about the people
who are most susceptible to it and about Mass Movements. I am convinced
that at least a third of the population is what Eric Hoffer calls "true
believers." They are joiners and followers...people who want to give
away their power. They look for answers, meaning, and enlightenment outside
Hoffer, who wrote "The True Believer", a classic on
mass movements, says, "true believers are not intent on bolstering
and advancing a cherished self, but are those craving to be rid of unwanted
self. They are followers, not because of a desire for self-advancement,
but because it can satisfy their passion for self-renunciation!" Hoffer
also says that true believers "are eternally incomplete and eternally
I know this from my own experience. In my years of communicating concepts
and conducting trainings, I have run into them again and again. All I can
do is attempt to show them that the only thing to seek is the True Self
within. Their personal answers are to be found there and there alone. I
communicate that the basics of spirituality are self-responsibility and
self-actualization. But most of the true believers just tell me that I'm
not spiritual and go looking for someone who will give them the dogma and
structure they desire.
Never underestimate the potential danger of these people. They can easily
be molded into fanatics who will gladly work and die for their holy cause.
It is a substitute for their lost faith in themselves and offers them as
a substitute for individual hope. The Moral Majority is made up of true
believers. All cults are composed of true believers. You'll find them in
politics, churches, businesses, and social cause groups. They are the fanatics
in these organizations.
Mass Movements will usually have a charismatic leader. The followers
want to convert others to their way of living or impose a new way of life--if
necessary, by legislating laws forcing others to their view, as evidenced
by the activities of the Moral Majority. This means enforcement by guns
or punishment, for that is the bottomline in law enforcement.
A common hatred, enemy, or devil is essential to the success of a mass
movement. The Born-Again Christians have Satan himself, but that isn't
enough--they've added the occult, the New Age thinkers and, lately, all
those who oppose their integration of church and politics, as evidenced
in their political reelection campaigns against those who oppose their
views. In revolutions, the devil is usually the ruling power or aristocracy.
Some human-potential movements are far too clever to ask their graduates
to join anything, thus labeling themselves as a cult--but, if you look
closely, you'll find that their devil is anyone and everyone who hasn't
taken their training.
There are mass movements without devils but they seldom attain major
status. The True Believers are mentally unbalanced or insecure people,
or those without hope or friends. People don't look for allies when they
love, but they do when they hate or become obsessed with a cause. And those
who desire a new life and a new order feel the old ways must be eliminated
before the new order can be built.
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Persuasion isn't technically brainwashing but it is the manipulation
of the human mind by another individual, without the manipulated party
being aware what caused his opinion shift. I only have time to very basically
introduce you to a few of the thousands of techniques in use today, but
the basis of persuasion is always to access your right brain. The
left half of your brain is analytical and rational. The right side is creative
and imaginative. That is overly simplified but it makes my point. So, the
idea is to distract the left brain and keep it busy. Ideally, the persuader
generates an eyes-open altered state of consciousness, causing you to shift
from beta awareness into alpha; this can be measured on an EEG machine.
First, let me give you an example of distracting the left brain. Politicians
use these powerful techniques all the time; lawyers use many variations
which, I've been told, they call "tightening the noose."
Assume for a moment that you are watching a politician give a speech.
First, he might generate what is called a "yes set." These
are statements that will cause listeners to agree; they might even unknowingly
nod their heads in agreement. Next come the truisms. These are usually
facts that could be debated but, once the politician has his audience agreeing,
the odds are in the politician's favor that the audience won't stop to
think for themselves, thus continuing to agree. Last comes the suggestion.
This is what the politician wants you to do and, since you have been agreeing
all along, you could be persuaded to accept the suggestion. Now, if you'll
listen closely to my political speech, you'll find that the first three
are the "yes set," the next three are truisms and the last is
"Ladies and gentlemen: are you angry about high food prices? Are
you tired of astronomical gas prices? Are you sick of out-of-control inflation?
Well, you know the Other Party allowed 18 percent inflation last year;
you know crime has increased 50 percent nationwide in the last 12 months,
and you know your paycheck hardly covers your expenses any more. Well,
the answer to resolving these problems is to elect me, John Jones, to the
And I think you've heard all that before. But you might also watch for
what are called embedded commands. As an example: On key words,
the speaker would make a gesture with his left hand, which research has
shown is more apt to access your right brain. Today's media-oriented politicians
and spellbinders are often carefully trained by a whole new breed of specialist
who are using every trick in the book--both old and new--to manipulate
you into accepting their candidate.
The Power of NLP
The concepts and techniques of Neuro-Linguistics are so heavily protected
that I found out the hard way that to even talk about them publicly or
in print results in threatened legal action. Yet Neuro-Linguistic training
is readily available to anyone willing to devote the time and pay the price.
It is some of the most subtle and powerful manipulation I have yet been
exposed to. A good friend who recently attended a two-week seminar on Neuro-Linguistics
found that many of those she talked to during the breaks were government
Another technique that I'm just learning about is unbelievably slippery;
it is called an interspersal technique and the idea is to say one
thing with words but plant a subconscious impression of something else
in the minds of the listeners and/or watchers.
Let me give you an example: Assume you are watching a television commentator
make the following statement: Senator Johnson is assisting local
authorities to clear up the stupid mistakes of companies contributing to
the nuclear waste problems." It sounds like a statement of fact, but,
if the speaker emphasizes the right word, and especially if he makes the
proper hand gestures on the key words, you could be left with the subconscious
impression that Senator Johnson is stupid. That was the subliminal goal
of the statement and the speaker cannot be called to account for anything.
Persuasion techniques are also frequently used on a much smaller scale
with just as much effectiveness. The insurance salesman knows his pitch
is likely to be much more effective if he can get you to visualize something
in your mind. This is right-brain communication. For instance, he might
pause in his conversation, look slowly around your livingroom and say,
"Can you just imagine this beautiful home burning to the ground?"
Of course you can! It is one of your unconscious fears and, when he forces
you to visualize it, you are more likely to be manipulated into signing
his insurance policy.
Shock and Confusion
The Hare Krishnas, operating in every airport, use what I call shock
and confusion techniques to distract the left brain and communicate
directly with the right brain. While waiting for a plane, I once watched
one operate for over an hour. He had a technique of almost jumping in front
of someone. Initially, his voice was loud then dropped as he made his pitch
to take a book and contribute money to the cause. Usually, when people
are shocked, they immediately withdraw. In this case they were shocked
by the strange appearance, sudden materialization and loud voice of the
Hare Krishna devotee. In other words, the people went into an alpha state
for security because they didn't want to confront the reality before them.
In alpha, they were highly suggestible so they responded to the suggestion
of taking the book; the moment they took the book, they felt guilty and
responded to the second suggestion: give money. We are all conditioned
that if someone gives us something, we have to give them something in return--in
that case, it was money. While watching this hustler, I was close enough
to notice that many of the people he stopped exhibited an outward sign
of alpha--their eyes were actually dilated.
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Subliminals are hidden suggestions that only your subconscious perceives.
They can be audio, hidden behind music, or visual, airbrushed into a picture,
flashed on a screen so fast that you don't consciously see them, or cleverly
incorporated into a picture or design.
Most audio subliminal reprogramming tapes offer verbal suggestions recorded
at a low volume. I question the efficacy of this technique--if subliminals
are not perceptible, they cannot be effective, and subliminals recorded
below the audible threshold are therefore useless. The oldest audio subliminal
technique uses a voice that follows the volume of the music so subliminals
are impossible to detect without a parametric equalizer. But this technique
is patented and, when I wanted to develop my own line of subliminal audiocassettes,
negotiations with the patent holder proved to be unsatisfactory.
My attorney obtained copies of the patents which I gave to some talented
Hollywood sound engineers, asking them to create a new technique. They
found a way to psycho-acoustically modify and synthesize the suggestions
so that they are projected in the same chord and frequency as the music,
thus giving them the effect of being part of the music. But we found that
in using this technique, there is no way to reduce various frequencies
to detect the subliminals. In other words, although the suggestions are
being heard by the subconscious mind, they cannot be monitored with even
the most sophisticated equipment.
If we were able to come up with this technique as easily as we did,
I can only imagine how sophisticated the technology has become, with unlimited
government or advertising funding. And I shudder to think about the propaganda
and commercial manipulation that we are exposed to on a daily basis. There
is simply no way to know what is behind the music you hear. It may even
be possible to hide a second voice behind the voice to which you are listening.
The series by Wilson Bryan Key, Ph.D., on subliminals in advertising
and political campaigns well documents the misuse in many areas, especially
printed advertising in newspapers, magazines, and posters.
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The big question about subliminals is: do they work? And I guarantee
you they do. Not only from the response of those who have used my tapes,
but from the results of such programs as the subliminals behind the music
in department stores. Supposedly, the only message is instructions to not
steal: one East Coast department store chain reported a 37 percent reduction
in thefts in the first nine months of testing.
A 1984 article in the technical newsletter, "Brain-Mind Bulletin,"
states that as much as 99 percent of our cognitive activity may be "non-conscious,"
according to the director of the Laboratory for Cognitive Psychophysiology
at the University of Illinois. The lengthy report ends with the statement,
"these findings support the use of subliminal approaches such as taped
suggestions for weight loss and the therapeutic use of hypnosis and Neuro-Linguistic
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Mass Misuse of Subliminal Programming
I could relate many stories that support subliminal programming, but
I'd rather use my time to make you aware of even more subtle uses of such
I have personally experienced sitting in a Los Angeles auditorium with
over ten thousand people who were gathered to listen to a current charismatic
figure. Twenty minutes after entering the auditorium, I became aware that
I was going in and out of an altered state. Those accompanying me experienced
the same thing. Since it is our business, we were aware of what was happening,
but those around us were not. By careful observation, what appeared to
be spontaneous demonstrations were, in fact, artful manipulations. The
only way I could figure that the eyes-open trance had been induced was
that a 6- to 7-cycle-per-second vibration was being piped into the room
behind the air conditioner sound. That particular vibration generates alpha,
which would render the audience highly susceptible. Ten to 25 percent of
the population is capable of a somnambulistic level of altered states of
consciousness; for these people, the suggestions of the speaker, if non-threatening,
could potentially be accepted as "commands."
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This leads to the mention of vibrato. Vibrato is the tremulous
effect imparted in some vocal or instrumental music, and the cyle-per-second
range causes people to go into an altered state of consciousness. At one
period of English history, singers whose voices contained pronounced vibrato
were not allowed to perform publicly because listeners would go into an
altered state and have fantasies, often sexual in nature.
People who attend opera or enjoy listening to singers like Mario Lanza
are familiar with this altered state induced by the performers.
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Extra-low Frequency Vibrations (ELFs)
Now, let's carry this awareness a little farther. There are also inaudible
ELFs (extra-low frequency waves). These are electromagnetic in nature.
One of the primary uses of ELFs is to communicate with our submarines.
Dr. Andrija Puharich, a highly respected researcher, in an attempt to warn
U.S. officials about Russian use of ELFs, set up an experiment. Volunteers
were wired so their brain waves could be measured on an EEG. They were
sealed in a metal room that could not be penetrated by a normal signal.
Puharich then beamed ELF waves at the volunteers. ELFs go right through
the earth and, of course, right through metal walls. Those inside couldn't
know if the signal was or was not being sent. And Puharich watched the
reactions on the technical equipment: 30 percent of those inside the room
were taken over by the ELF signal in six to ten seconds.
When I say "taken over," I mean that their behavior followed
the changes anticipated at very precise frequencies. Waves below 6 cycles
per second caused the subjects to become very emotionally upset, and even
disrupted bodily functions. At 8.2 cycles, they felt very high...an elevated
feeling, as though they had been in masterful meditation, learned over
a period of years. Eleven to 11.3 cycles induced waves of depressed agitation
leading to riotous behavior.
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Dr. Patrick Flanagan is a personal friend of mine. In the early 1960s,
as a teenager, Pat was listed as one of the top scientists in the world
by "Life" magazine. Among his many inventions was a device he
called the Neurophone--an electronic instrument that can successfully programm
suggestions directly through contact with the skin. When he attempted to
patent the device, the government demanded that he prove it worked. When
he did, the National Security Agency confiscated the neurophone. It took
Pat two years of legal battle to get his invention back.
In using the device, you don't hear or see a thing; it is applied to
the skin, which Pat claims is the source of special senses. The skin contains
more sensors for heat, touch, pain, vibration, and electrical fields than
any other part of the human anatomy.
In one of his recent tests, Pat conducted two identical seminars for
a military audience--one seminar one night and one the next night, because
the size of the room was not large enough to accommodate all of them at
one time. When the first group proved to be very cool and unwilling to
respond, Patrick spent the next day making a special tape to play at the
second seminar. The tape instructed the audience to be extremely warm and
responsive and for their hands to become "tingly." The tape was
played through the neurophone, which was connected to a wire he placed
along the ceiling of the room. There were no speakers, so no sound could
be heard, yet the message was successfully transmitted from that wire directly
into the brains of the audience. They were warm and receptive, their hands
tingled and they responded, according to programming, in other ways that
I cannot mention here.
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Technological Tools for Mass Manipulation
The more we find out about how human beings work through today's highly
advanced technological research, the more we learn to control human beings.
And what probably scares me the most is that the medium for takeover is
already in place. The television set in your livingroom and bedroom is
doing a lot more than just entertaining you.
Before I continue, let me point out something else about an altered
state of consciousness. When you go into an altered state, you transfer
into right brain, which results in the internal release of the body's own
opiates: enkephalins and Beta-endorphins, chemically almost identical to
opium. In other words, it feels good...and you want to come back for more.
Recent tests by researcher Herbert Krugman showed that, while viewers
were watching TV, right-brain activity outnumbered left-brain activity
by a ratio of two to one. Put more simply, the viewers were in an altered
state...in trance more often than not. They were getting their Beta-endorphin
To measure attention spans, psychophysiologist Thomas Mulholland of
the Veterans Hospital in Bedford, Massachusetts, attached young viewers
to an EEG machine that was wired to shut the TV set off whenever the children's
brains produced a majority of alpha waves. Although the children were told
to concentrate, only a few could keep the set on for more than 30 seconds!
Most viewers are already hypnotized. To deepen the trance is easy. One
simple way is to place a blank, black frame every 32 frames in the film
that is being projected. This creates a 45-beat-per-minute pulsation perceived
only by the subconscious mind--the ideal pace to generate deep hypnosis.
The commercials or suggestions presented following this alpha-inducing
broadcast are much more likely to be accepted by the viewer. The high percentage
of the viewing audience that has somnambulistic-depth ability could very
well accept the suggestions as commands--as long as those commands did
not ask the viewer to do something contrary to his morals, religion, or
The medium for takeover is here. By the age of 16, children have spent
10,000 to 15,000 hours watching television--that is more time than they
spend n school! In the average home, the TV set is on for six hours and
44 minutes per day--an increase of nine minutes from last year and three
times the average rate of increase during the 1970s.
It obviously isn't getting better...we are rapidly moving into an alpha-level
world--very possibly the Orwellian world of "1984"--placid, glassy-eyed,
and responding obediently to instructions.
A research project by Jacob Jacoby, a Purdue University psychologist,
found that of 2,700 people tested, 90 percent misunderstood even such simple
viewing fare as commercials and "Barnaby Jones." Only minutes
after watching, the typical viewer missed 23 to 36 percent of the questions
about what he or she had seen. Of course they did--they were going in and
out of trance! If you go into a deep trance, you must be instructed to
remember--otherwise you automatically forget.
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I have just touched the tip of the iceberg. When you start to combine
subliminal messages behind the music, subliminal visuals projected on the
screen, hypnotically produced visual effects, sustained musical beats at
a trance-inducing pace . . . you have extremely effective brainwashing.
Every hour that you spend watching the TV set you become more conditioned.
And, in case you thought there was a law against any of these things, guess
again. There isn't! There are a lot of powerful people who obviously prefer
things exactly the way they are. Maybe they have plans for...?
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