Teenage Hypnotist

I was an awkward teenage girl when I found a book at the library that showed me everything I needed to know about hypnosis. I thought being a hypnotist might improve my social standing in high school. That didn’t happened although my experiments paid off later.

I practiced what I learned on my kid sister, seven years younger, who turned out to be a very receptive subject. Upstairs in our bedroom, I swung a golden pendant in front of her face. I said the commands sotto voce. Her eyes indeed got heavy. Yes, she got sleepy. She did go under. Remarkable.

I tested my sister although it was clear she wasn’t faking. I did the usual stage tricks like making her believe she was drinking water when she wasn’t or she was hot or cold.

A couple of times, I took the experiment further. I knew about the woman who recalled a past life as an Irish woman, Bridey Murphy, after she was hypnotized. Inspired, I asked my sister to tell me about a previous life. We went back a few. She wasn’t rich or famous in any of them and she told me enough details I believed she was being true.

I hypnotized her a few times and dropped it. Hypnosis was an eery skill to use on a kid sister. Besides, I didn’t think our parents would have been happy if they knew. 

Years later, when I was a sophomore in college, I got stuck taking philosophy 101. It was a gen. ed., of course, and I quickly realized I didn’t have a head for that kind of thinking. I was in trouble.

But I got a lucky break one class when the professor started talking about the possibility of reincarnation. Finally, here was something I got. I raised my hand. I told the prof about hypnotizing my sister and taking her to past lives. He was not only interested, he told me after class if I gave a lecture about my experiments to his classes I could skip all of the exams and papers. I would get an A for the course.

Really, how could I refuse? It was the easiest A I ever earned.

There’s a postscript here. Yes, later I tried hypnosis on others but failed in the attempts. Perhaps the willing subjects didn’t believe I could do it or unlike my kid sister, they didn’t trust me.


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