From Magical Blend Magazine
In the last issue I enthusiastically reviewed
Thomas Condon's CD series, Expanded Intuition Training.
I am just as excited about the Multi-Evocation hypnosis CDs
which are put out by his company. I have used many hypnosis CDs
and I can say without hesitation that none of them match the
production quality, hypnotic expertise and effectiveness of
The CDs are among the first to effectively use Ericksonian
Hypnosis, based on the work of Milton H. Erickson who is largely
responsible for reviving hypnosis as a legitimate therapeutic
tool. Erickson's life work (he died in 1980) has spawned a large
following among psychotherapists and his long range influence is
already being compared to Freud's. The Multi Evocation CDs also
feature Condon and Carol Erickson, Milton's eldest
Ms. Erickson is increasingly well known in her
own right. She leads hypnosis workshops in the US and Europe, is
reputed to be a wonderful teacher as well as therapist. She
demonstrates her obvious independent mastery of hypnosis on the
Ericksonian Hypnosis is distinct from classical forms of
hypnosis in that it is gentle and indirect rather than
authoritarian. The Ericksonian hypnotist assumes that it is your
unconscious mind that has the power not only to go into a trance
at "just the right time," but also to make positive changes in
your life. The hypnotist's role is that of a guide, someone who
uses hypnosis to help you get connected to your own latent
Multi-Evocation CDs do this very well, using
Ericksonian Hypnosis in expert and subtle ways. First, the
hypnotists are very open-ended and indirect, inviting you to
relax in such a comforting way that trance is inevitable. They
also take you into metaphorical environments that are worlds
within themselves. One CD, Natural Self Confidence,
never once tells the listener to be more confident; the CD
consists entirely of metaphors, puns, and allegories about
trees, supported by superb natural sound effects. Thus the
purpose of the CD is stated indirectly, allowing you to make
your own unconsious associations and responses without ever
dictating what your hypnotic experience should be.
Each CD features at least two voices speaking simultaneously
during hypnosis. The process, called double induction, was
originally inspired by Carlos Castenada's Don Juan books. The
two voices, one female and one male, are localized - one in each
ear. There is a stereo effect as the voices weave together,
creating a harmony of contrasting images, each voice speaking to
a different hemisphere of the brain. It's too much for the
rational mind to keep track of. After some time spent initially
trying to hear what each voice was saying, I just relaxed, went
with them, and enjoyed myself.
Each of the CDs is unique with different purposes
and offer different metaphorical environments. Here's are two
- features two voices and has a number of
uses. Principally designed for stress reduction, it teaches you
how to go into a trace and then offers you a variety of ways the
trance can be used. This is done through a metaphorical
journey to the "Center of Time," where you gradually arrive in a
place where "there's all the time in the world." In the trance
state you are offered choices: you can relax and enjoy yourself,
relive some pleasant fulfilling memories, have your unconscious
mind solve a problem, or focus on goal setting. I have used the
CD for each of these things and find it very calming, effective
Natural Self Confidence
- For confidence building and
integrating the conscious and unconscious resources of the
listener. As I mentioned, the text is about trees. You begin on
a hillside next to a tree. As the CD progresses various things
happen: it rains, the sun comes out, night falls, the tree falls
asleep and has a dream before the sun comes back up again. It is
poetic, vividly beautiful in its imagery, and creates an
involving, womb-like atmosphere. With repeated use, I find I
feel more secure in myself and my actions. The imagery from the
CD comes to me in my daily life in really useful ways. Of all
the CDs this is the one to start with.
Multi Evocation CDs are the state of the art in
hypnosis CDs. They have been a major personal resource for me
and continue to hold value through time. I keep discovering new
levels of meaning and deeper dimensions of experience."
here for Multi Evocation CDsBack
The Software Legacy of Milton Erickson
Multi-Evocation Hypnotic CDs with 3-D
by Carol Erickson and Thomas
Megabrain Report Product Review by Terry Patten
A revolution has transformed Western hypnosis
over the past 50 years. Earlier in the century, hypnosis had
been pushed to the fringe of mainstream medical and
psychological circles, and was in danger of being relegated to
the status of a vaudeville act and psychological curiosity.
Today, hypnotherapy is widely accepted, and ranks as one of the
most dynamic fields in psychotherapy. Contemporary
hypnotherapists proudly claim that they possess profoundly
powerful "technologies for personal change."
In this time hypnotherapy has been transformed by
a number of important innovators, but no single individual is
more responsible for this transformation than Dr. Milton H.
Erickson, the pioneering intuitive genius of modern
hypnotherapy. However, "Ericksonian" hypnosis is taught only to
therapists. Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP), developed by
Bandler and Grinder via Ericksonís inspiration, is a complex
system of specific subconscious communication techniques which
takes years to master. Thus, until recently, an individual
wanting to make use of Ericksonís insights into personal
transformation had to choose between an expensive course of
therapy and a much more expensive, time-consuming course of
The audiocassettes reviewed here attempt to put
Erickson's magic within the reach of any curious consumer. They
are produced by practicing professional hypnotherapists and
educators who claim that using these CDs can catalyze major
lasting positive changes in people's lives by using Ericksonian
and NLP techniques for engineering subconscious changes.
Most of Carol Erickson's and Tom Condon's CDs
begin with a single comprehensible voice inviting you to take a
break and get into a comfortable position. But soon you hear
Condon talking in one ear and Carol Erickson in the other, each
pretty much talking about the same subject, trees for instance,
or a big nice house. You hear two animated, poetic monologues,
spoken in a relaxing and intimate fashion, as though you are
overhearing two people talking to a close friend about something
they really enjoy considering. And they keep expanding on that
conversation in amusing new ways all through the program. Except
you dropped deep into trance soon after they began and the next
thing you knew the CD was over, but youíre feeling relaxed and
confident, creative, intuitive, or maybe humorous.
The specific intention of these "dual induction"
CDs is to use Erickson's "confusion" technique to induce trance
and bypass conscious resistance to transformative suggestions.
Erickson himself didn't use dual inductions, which are only
possible via CDs (or using two hypnotherapists) but it has
arisen among Ericksonian and NLP practitioners (who trace their
roots to Erickson) and it certainly fits his definition of his
own technique:"The presentation to the
subjects of a series of seemingly but only loosely related ideas
actually based upon a significant thread of continuity not
readily recognized, leading to an increasing divergence of
Erickson himself presumably would not have approved of audio CDs
- in principle. He taught that hypnotherapy should be highly
individualized, directed very specifically to each client's
idiosyncracies and constantly responsive to the client's
changing states, receptivity and responses. On the other hand,
as Tom Condon says, "He never heard CDs like these."
At the end of his life, Erickson spent most of his time training
therapists in his back yard. He did this by telling stories, by
working on his students as they, ostensibly, were studying his
technique. And, working intuitively, he found ways to offer
effective therapy to the whole group.
Condon, working with Erickson's daughter, Carol,
locates his work in the Ericksonian tradition, despite
Erickson's theoretical objections to CDs. "(Erickson) told the
same stories again and again. He used metaphors in a broad way
so that they offered a lot of positive choices, allowing a range
of different people to respond according to their individuality.
After sessions in his back yard, people who were there would
sometimes disagree about exactly which of them Erickson had been
working with. The reason was, he was offering something
universal, and it felt to more than one person as if it had been
personalized for them. As we've worked on CDs, we've drawn on
Condon says he and Erickson are not trying to
tell stories but instead are working with "embedded metaphor."
The result is complex and interesting. He says they attempt to
"build metaphorical environments which operate on as many levels
as possible." Thus, after listening to Condon and Erickson
talking about trees, in which you have richly enjoyed
considering trees, feeling how strong and tall and rooted they
are, how they give shade, how they draw from both earth and sky,
water and sun, you notice that you feel very ... well, good --
or "naturally self-confident."
Condon says a "metaphorical environment" consist
of an ostensible topic with several subtexts. "The reason we
don't use stories is that they're limited. You can't listen to
them as often. We want to build as many levels into our CDs as
possible. I'm interested in richness, in people still finding
new levels of meaning after years of use. So we the environment
as a metaphor.
"These are tools for repeated use, so they have to address
various changing needs. We want people to be able to continue to
use them while they are growing and still find them keying new
areas for change. The CDs are more like a literary form that
facilitates change. But you don't do that by taking control away
from the client. You offer them new options, new choices, and
you have to do that in a way that appreciates the complex
variety of people who may eventually listen to the CD."
I asked him about the commonly used metaphor
"reprogramming the subconscious" and he elaborated, "It's a
naive, simplistic metaphor that doesn't adequately address the
complexity of human beings. Reprogramming requires permission on
a variety of levels. It's not even therapeutically advisable to
cancel programs and replace them with new ones using an audio
CD. You don't know what place the so-called program has in the
ground of the person's life and experience ... On a CD you
need to offer enough levels of meaning, enough choices to allow
for almost any contingency. You need to allow many optional ways
to respond to the metaphors offered. The mind is not a computer.
That's really just a marketing metaphor."
Condon and Erickson are masterful practitioners of
Ericksonian technique and highly creative as well. Paul Scheele,
the creator of Paraliminals, offered a tribute to Condon in my
interview for this review: "The Changeworks CDs were an
inspiration to me to make my own CDs, but not just consciously.
I loved some of Tom Condon's phrases so much, they wrapped
around my brain. After I finished my first few CDs, I found that
I had borrowed a number of phrases from him without realizing
it. Tom called me up and pointed out what I had done. When I
took a specific look, I agreed with him: I had borrowed too
much! I actually went back and re-recorded my own CDs!"
Changeworks CDs are packaged beautifully and
priced substantially lower here, at $12.95 per CD. Also, I was
delighted and impressed when I began listening seriously to
them. I enjoyed listening to a man's voice (Condon's) through
one ear, and a woman's voice (Carol Erickson's, daughter of the
great hypno-progenitor) through the other. I also loved the way
they talked. They had such soothing, really intelligent and soft
conversations; listening to them felt so good! And I felt good
after listening to them.
With the Changeworks CDs, I feel comforted, but
without any perceptible shift to a childlike status. I feel like
my adult self, listening to someone chat in a soothing and
sympathetic manner about some ordinary aspect of my world. And I
find it very comforting to listen to this small talk, until it
begins coming to me through both ears, which feels kind of fun,
and gradually I get pleasurably lost in a whole environment of
conversation about the ocean, or trains, or trees.
The Changeworks CDs have soft, melodic music,
usually created on synthesizer or piano. The voices frequently
develop a soft, relaxing rhythm, with short pauses after each
phrase, creating a sensation not unlike the lapping of water at
a lakeshore. Listening to them, I find myself drawn into a
dreamy reverie where I feel comforted, safe, amused and
entertained. The whole series deserves to be explored, but I can
particularly recommend Natural Self Confidence (it's a
beautiful, multidimensional literary achievement!)
here for Multi Evocation CDsBack
the Unconscious Choose:
An interview with Carol Erickson
From Psychologies,The French
edition of Psychology Today
Milton Erickson gave his name to a particular
method of hypnosis. His daughter Carol has taken up the family
torch and today manages the Erickson Institute in Berkeley,
Psychologies: What is the difference between
"classical" hypnosis and Ericksonian hypnosis?
Carol Erickson: In "classical" hypnosis,
suggestions are made directly to the subject. The therapist asks
you to stop smoking and induces several key phrases to make you
feel disgusted with smoke, to stop you from buying a pack of
cigarettes, to make you lose your habits. He or she gives you
orders. In Ericksonian hypnosis, the injunctions are indirect.
You use little stories, tales, metaphors, comparisons or images.
The therapist cannot know what is good or bad for
the patient. Therefore they mustn't chose for the patient. If
told a few little stories, the patient's unconscious can choose
for itself what is suitable. The choice is practically
unlimited: mythology, folklore, films, novels, children's
stories, all offer situations in which each of us can recognise
ourselves and find a solution. The evocative power of a story or
a tale has a much more profound effect on the unconscious: they
offer us a new understanding of ourselves, give us new
perspectives on life. Letting the unconscious choose also allows
us to bypass resistance and patients take part in their own
therapy. The patients will be the ones to heal themselves. My
father developed his technique along these lines because he had
total confidence in the unconscious capacities of human beings
Do you practise a particular induction
Here too the technique is different: patients
participate in their own hypnotic trance. They listen, and if
their therapist is interesting enough, they focus their
attention and cooperate. In fact, the therapist is a guide who
helps subjects direct their attention onto themselves.
Usually, when people talk of hypnosis, they
think that you are put to sleep completely and are at the
mercy of the practitioner ...
No. For us, hypnosis is a modified state of
consciousness in which you allow the unconscious to speak. In
the United States, the word "hypnosis" doesn't really have the
same connotation that it has in France: it's known that the
subject is not asleep and remains conscious. You could say that
you give yourself over to a sort of directed reverie. Our
technique is natural submersion in a natural state in which
people direct their attention onto their inner world. And then
you find yourself in a "creative" state.
Can the different levels of consciousness be
There are many different states. From a slightly
modified state to the state that we call "deep trance." These
states allow a dissociation from parts of our psyche, for pain
control, for example. It's up to the practitioner to perceive
which level of consciousness his or her patient is in.
Apart from actual therapy itself, what are the
exact contributions of this method to our daily lives?
As it is a holistic practice, that is, one that
will take into account all the aspects of a human being, all
areas of life can be touched upon: pain control, help with
healing, dream control, developing intellectual faculties. I
have been working for a long time with Thomas Condon, and we
have oriented our work above all around awakening creativity.
Writers with problems will find themselves in a certain state
which will permit them to write without thinking, without going
through intellect and reason which are blocking them. They won't
think about what they are doing and all they will have to do is
read what they have written! It's a little like automatic
writing. That's only a glimpse of what can be obtained.
Can this give new meaning to life?
Yes, if you really want it to. Ericksonian
hypnosis is a way to help us discover for ourselves our
unconscious desires, that is, what we really need, what we want
to be, the way to change, and the strength to carry it through.
Changing your life and your behavior is like changing the
information on a computer. I have noticed, by the way, that more
and more people are wanting to change their life no matter what
their country. And these transformations are happening more and
more rapidly. In the United States, we say that this is a "sign
of the times"...
In a hypnotic state, can we discover things
that are truly new to us, that were completely unknown to us ?
Yes, when you develop your intuition. Intuition is
knowing something, but without knowing why or how you know it.
Intuitive knowledge comes spontaneously and directly without
using reason or logical thought. It is intuition which will give
you information about your future possibilities and the way to
change. Intuition can be defined as the faculty of synthesising
and making deductions out of what our unconscious has
accumulated. This faculty can be trained, just as we can develop
the memory or the physical body.
You produce many auto-suggestive cassette CDs.
The problem here is that the relationship with a cassette
recorder is not the same as one with a therapist!
There are many people who can't consult a
therapist because of lack of money or time, or because of fear.
These CDs help them to confront their problems more easily.
Obviously, when we produce a CD, we are very aware of the
problem of rapport with a machine. And it's a kind of challenge!
We use the principles of Milton Erickson, the metaphors, and we
have developed what we call "Multi-Evocation:" this is a
stereophonic system which creates an environment of music and
sound in which the evocations and suggestions occupy the space
in three dimensions. This environment means that the listener is
plunged into a reverie while remaining quite conscious and free
to choose whether to continue the session or not. I know that
for the French, this system must seem very American, but it is
When you give workshops for French
professionals, do you adapt your technique to our country's
No. Firstly because there is never just one single
way to practice hypnosis, including the Ericksonian method:
therapists must each develop their own style. Secondly,
because I think that our technique is universal, just as the
thirst for love is the same whether you're American, Italian or
Swedish, we all have the same desires and the same needs: to
study, evolve, create, communicate better... The goal of
Ericksonian hypnosis is to be in harmony with our desires and to
let each person find his or her own individual identity.
here for Carol Erickson's InstituteMulti
Evocation CDs Back
"NLP cannot be dismissed as just another hustle.
Its theoretical underpinnings represent an ambitious attempt to
codify and synthesize the insights of linguistics, body
language, and the study of communication systems." - Psychology
"(NLP) does offer the potential for making
changes without the usual agony that accompanies these
phenomena... Thus it affords the opportunity to gain
flexibility, creativity, and greater freedom of action than most
of us now know." -Training and Development Journal
"While, for the most part, NLP has been applied
to psychotherapy, new applications are being explored... Work of
this kind with school children has proven to be very successful.
In fact, these approaches have been successful with students who
have been labeled "learning disabled." - Data
"Business people use Neuro-Linguistics to enhance
their communication and provide them with more choices when
working in a difficult situation ... it shows how we make sense
of the world around us and communicate."
- Real Estate Today
"NLP is not snake oil; it could be the most
important synthesis of knowledge about human communication to
emerge since the sixties." - Science
"Any integration between clinical skills and
basic sciences must include Neuro-Linguistics ..." -Dentistry