Hypnotist plans to put Facebookers in trance

A modern hypnotist is planning to put a world record number of people in a trance tonight using the internet.

Chris Hughes has signed up more than 6,000 people for the stunt being run through social networking sites Facebook and Twitter.

Mr Hughes, 34, said: "It started when someone suggested we do a mass hypnosis. "Nobody has ever tried this before on such a mass scale. There is no world record so we are attempting to set a world record for the largest online group hypnosis session.

"Since we launched it, I've had people register from 85 countries, from Peru to Israel, with Italians, Britons and Americans the most interested.

"Social media is all about bringing people together, so it is a perfect way to help educate the world about hypnosis. Now I'm getting one to two registrations a minute, it has gone absolutely mad."

Mr Hughes, from Banbury, Oxfordshire, has been a hypnotist for five years and is keen to promote its benefits. "Hypnotism is not just about doing silly things, although those are great for entertainment," he said. "It's really about accepting ideas for change and dealing with things in your life that you may be having trouble accepting – like cutting out cream cakes or giving up smoking. I truly believe that everyone can be hypnotised, and people shouldn't be afraid of it."

The event, called SocialTrance, which coincides with World Hypnotism Day, will begin at 8.30pm and is expected to make it into the Guinness World Records book.

A computer with an internet connection, speakers or headphones, and a comfy chair are needed to take part.

Mr Hughes asks that people put themselves in a quiet place where they will not be disturbed during the session. "This session will be designed to help people achieve what they want to in 2010 and give people a really good start to the year.

"When someone is hypnotised they can, at a subconscious level, accept ideas that they could otherwise think are too hard or too much effort to achieve," he said.

"Hypnosis helps people internalise change and make big differences in their lives. This session will give positive, fairly general, suggestions for change that can be applied to most individual's goals."

The session will feature an audio webcast, with Mr Hughes conducting the half-hour social trance live.

"Within a minute of starting the session, those listening will be gradually taken into a relaxing level of hypnosis and it should be very enjoyable.

"To make it interesting and to demonstrate the idea of suggestion in a fun way, those taking part will find themselves at times having a sensation of their eyes stuck together and experiencing relaxation like never before."

Mr Hughes stressed that he had designed the session to be safe at all times. Anyone over 18, except pregnant women, those with mental illness, and people under the influence of alcohol or drugs, can take part, although epileptics are advised to seek advice from their doctors.

And no one should worry that they will find themselves the butt of a mass joke, clucking like a chicken every time they hear a door bell ringing or involuntarily trying to chat up a lamp post.

"At any time people will be able to open their eyes and return to their normal state. As long as people are willing, the session will continue and it's completely consensual," Mr Hughes said.

Anyone interested in taking part should visit bit.ly/socialtran to sign up. At 8.30pm, visitors will be directed to another website to begin the session.

Under their spell: Hypnosis in history

*The Ancient Greeks are believed to have used "sleep temples" for mass relaxation and healing, which employed hypnosis techniques.



*In the 1890s, the "Indian Rope Trick" was widely reported in American newspapers as an infamous illusion sweeping India. The stunt involves a stage magician hurling rope into the air, which becomes solidly vertical before an assistant climbs it. At the time, many believed it to be evidence of successful audience hypnosis, but the story was later revealed as a hoax, made-up by a writer at The Chicago Tribune.



*In 2009, magician and illusionist Derren Brown attempted to hypnotise more than 4 million of his Channel 4 audience into believing they were stuck to their furniture. One in four participants claimed to have been affected.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Media

Recruitment Genius: Media & Advertising Sales Executive

£20000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This national business publishi...

Recruitment Genius: Media Telesales Executive - OTE £25,000

£14500 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

Guru Careers: Bathroom Showroom Manager / Bathroom Sales Designer

£22 - £25k basic + Commission=OTE £35k + Benefits: Guru Careers: A Bathroom Sh...

Guru Careers: Account Executive / Account Manager

£18 - 20k + Benefits: Guru Careers: An Account Executive / Account Manager is ...

Day In a Page

The long walk west: they fled war in Syria, only to get held up in Hungary – now hundreds of refugees have set off on foot for Austria

They fled war in Syria...

...only to get stuck and sidetracked in Hungary
From The Prisoner to Mad Men, elaborate title sequences are one of the keys to a great TV series

Title sequences: From The Prisoner to Mad Men

Elaborate title sequences are one of the keys to a great TV series. But why does the art form have such a chequered history?
Giorgio Armani Beauty's fabric-inspired foundations: Get back to basics this autumn

Giorgio Armani Beauty's foundations

Sumptuous fabrics meet luscious cosmetics for this elegant look
From stowaways to Operation Stack: Life in a transcontinental lorry cab

Life from the inside of a trucker's cab

From stowaways to Operation Stack, it's a challenging time to be a trucker heading to and from the Continent
Kelis interview: The songwriter and sauce-maker on cooking for Pharrell and crying over potatoes

Kelis interview

The singer and sauce-maker on cooking for Pharrell
Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

The addictive nature of Diplomacy

Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
8 best children's clocks

Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea