It's difficult to remember exactly how I felt when I was under the influence of trance. One of my friends noticed that I hadn't answered her emails for 2 weeks, which was extremely unusual for me, and so she suspected something was wrong.
Otherwise, I was just really 'preoccupied' with what I thought were spiritual ideas- but this preoccupation came with mild confusion. I felt like I wasn't getting anywhere and I became ambivalent about a lot of everyday things. I was still able to function, mind you. It's just that I didn't see the point to doing things anymore... it was like I could stop doing everything
and it would make no difference to my life.
Interestingly, I still had my usual 'identity', if you will. I was still definitely 'me' and felt myself to be the same 'me' as always.
I found an interesting article written by a person- Julian Knight, who grew up in a cult
and has since become a hypnotist and and behavioral researcher. The article is about both hypnotism (trance)
and thought reform
, which the author stresses are two different things:
A few quotes from this article:
"So thought reform, commonly known as ''brainwashing'' is not hypnotism. However the two can be used in conjunction. A typical environment in which a combination of some hypnotic techniques and some thought reform techniques are used in conjunction would be an evangelical or healing church community/congregation or a tribal spiritual ritual.
In these and similar controlled religious/spiritual environments a blend of crowd psychology and hysteria are used to place the audience into altered mental states conducive to trance and susceptible to thought reform."Also:
"In any of these hypnotic states an individual becomes very open to behavioral
and belief alterations. While our critical faculties are held at bay we are not able to think for ourselves in a calculated manner and therefore we do not effectively analyze incoming information or protect our currently held notions, perceptions or beliefs. We become very child-like and vulnerable."