Meditation and hypnosis seem to be relative. Millions of individuals worldwide use both practices to manage their stress, worry, and sadness. However, while the practices appear identical at first glance, there are substantial distinctions between the two.
In the following essay, we will look more closely at hypnosis and meditation, as well as the contrasts between them.
After you’ve finished reading this article, you might be interested in my post on the 14 benefits of mindfulness meditation.
Do you have a specific interest about the differences between hypnosis vs. meditation? Then use the table of contents below to jump to the most relevant section. And you can always go back by clicking on the black arrow in the right bottom corner of the page. Also, please note that some of the links in this article may be affiliate links. For more details, check the Disclosure section at the bottom of the page.
Here's what we'll cover:
What Exactly Is Hypnosis?
What exactly is hypnosis? There are numerous definitions of hypnosis, but the American Psychological Association defines it as “a cooperative interaction between a responsive person and a suggestive hypnotist.”
Even though it is a professionally proven treatment, hypnosis became popular due to popular performances and Hollywood movies. People are encouraged to act ridiculously and behave like chickens.
Despite its negative portrayal in the media, hypnosis has medicinal and therapeutic benefits. It is instrumental in treating pain and anxiety. Some research suggests that hypnosis can help with dementia and other mental illnesses.
Hypnosis has medical and therapeutic applications.
What Exactly Is Meditation?
Meditation is defined as a series of techniques to promote heightened mental awareness and focused concentration.
Nearly every religion, namely Judaism, Buddhism, Christianity, Islam, and Hinduism, includes meditative practices. Even though meditation is frequently employed for religious objectives, many people practice it regardless of their spiritual or religious beliefs.
Meditation is a powerful psychotherapy tool. Simple processes like listening to our breath, repeating a mantra, or detaching our thought process allow us to concentrate on a specific subject. Furthermore, these processes generate a condition of self-awareness and inner quiet, which can assist us in sharpening our attention.
Meditation teaches us that, while there are many aspects of life over which we have no control. We can control our own states and modify them for the better. Through meditation, we learn that we may use our minds to conquer our personal tragedies, worries, anxieties, and confusions.
What are the similarities and differences between meditation and hypnosis?
According to a recent study, the same areas of the brain are active during hypnosis and meditation. According to one study published in Medical Hypothesis, the same cerebral reactions are suggested during meditation and hypnosis.
It is clear that during both hypnosis and meditation, there is a profound sense of relaxation and peace, as well as mental silence.
It is also relatively normal for people to experience more emotions during hypnosis and meditation than in everyday life. My view on this is that the mind is quite active with environmental and social stimuli during the day. As a result, stressful emotions are frequently pushed into the subconscious mind. These stressed feelings resurface within a peaceful and relaxed condition.
What Is the Difference Between Meditation and Hypnosis?
Although meditation and hypnosis function through tranquility and relaxation, the outcomes are somewhat different.
Meditation and mindfulness techniques are commonly used to relieve stress and anxiety while creating mental stillness and peace. On the other hand, hypnosis is used to alter subconscious belief systems through suggestions and imagery trips. In other words, rather than simply venting undesired feelings, hypnosis is utilized to rewire subconscious programming.
Another distinction is that people are in a trance state during hypnosis that feels like they are somewhere between sleeping and awake. This meditative state permits the subconscious mind to tune in and allows poisonous belief systems to be rewired. However, peace and relaxation are limited during meditation due to the sitting position and the person directing himself/herself to the meditative state. As a result, totally letting go may not be possible in every experiment.
Hypnosis and meditation are both beneficial
Both self-hypnosis and meditation are enjoyable and beneficial experiences. Both have assisted many people in living happier, more fulfilling lives. We know that the two disciplines intersect and overlap in various ways. If you utilize a less “pure” style of meditation, it is almost always self-hypnosis disguised as meditation. There are significant distinctions between the two fields.
Although the distinction between meditation and self-hypnosis is frequently asked, how essential is the answer? Is it essential whether what you’re doing now is formally referred to as “meditation” or “self-hypnosis”? Probably not, though you might want to go meditate on it!
Meditation is simply another method of obtaining a hypnotic state.
Hypnosis is a natural mental state that we all go through daily. “Total concentration on a single stream of thought” is a suitable definition of the hypnotic state. Isn’t it true that we might say the same thing about meditation? So, in their most basic form, they are two different belief systems wrapped around the same state of consciousness.
The primary distinction between hypnosis and meditation
Some would argue that the main difference between the two is that hypnosis has a goal in mind – whatever it is. You enter hypnosis with a goal in mind. On the other hand, meditation has no specific purpose to strive for other than the complete emptying of the mind in its purest form. The goal of actual meditation (as opposed to the guided type I previously indicated) is to entirely liberate the mind of all thoughts.
There are various approaches to achieving this pure state of mind. Most of them include concentrating on and thinking about only one item. This could be an object (for example, a crystal, a lit candle, or a flower) on which you meditate–imagining it very clearly in your mind. You can think about the nature of that object, what it is made of, its shape, color, form, what it is like inside and out, how it was created…in fact, everything about it. The goal is to keep your attention concentrated on that one object for the duration of the meditation, thinking of nothing else.
Alternatively, it could be a notion on which you reflect (for example, forgiveness). Again, the aim is simply to investigate everything about the topic. In this situation, you would explore what forgiveness truly is and what it entails. There is no specific goal you are attempting to attain, no sense of accomplishment other than how effectively you managed to keep your thoughts focused on the idea. Meditation generally produces no desired results – only quiet, focused thought.
While meditating in this manner, you may obtain insights. While these times can be illuminating, fulfilling, and even exhilarating, they are not the reason for meditating. This type of meditation will almost surely leave you with a sense of serenity and clarity of mind — it is all about learning to train the mind. The ultimate and only true goal is to finally gain complete discipline to the point that you can experience utter peace of mind. Whether or not you ever accomplish this is essentially irrelevant because the steps toward it are both pleasurable and highly beneficial.
Thanks for the blog graphics: Canva.com
Disclosure: At Buddhatooth.com we only mention the products that we’ve researched and considered worthy. But it’s important to note that we are a participant of several affiliate programs, including but not limited to VigLink and Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a mean for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. As an Amazon Associate Buddhatooth.com earns from qualifying purchases.