APRIL 26, 2011. Here is another interview (from 1991) with my late friend and colleague, hypnotherapist Jack True. I’ve been publishing these conversations for years now.

If this is first time you’ve read one, you’re in for a treat. Jack was a magnificent thinker and practitioner. He never tried to talk down to people. He let fly with his deepest insights, no matter how revolutionary or complex. He always laid it all on the line.

Q (Rappoport): What was it you were saying before we sat down?

A (Jack True): The major fact of our time is that there are large numbers of people who have freed themselves from the prison of ideologies and fundamentalisms. They just don’t know where to go next. At some level of mind, they’re considering magic.

Q: The basic confusion surrounding this subject [magic] hasn’t been well articulated. It comes down to a question: is magic a space you enter, or is it something you create?

A: You just said a mouthful. Let’s get to that later. Meanwhile, I want to talk about experiences I’ve had with patients.

Q: Go ahead.

A: With a surprising number of people, under hypnosis, we find that they already have a picture of the future.

Q: Their own future?

A: Well, yes, but it’s more than that. They have a vision of the future of the planet.

Q: You mean an opinion about the future?

A: No. This is much bigger than that. It’s as if the whole future, like a big chunk of reality, is just sitting there, in their subconscious. They had no idea it was there until they bumped into it.

Q: Like a—

A: Like a whole novel. A book. The future. It feels to them like precognition. It’s knowledge about what hasn’t happened yet.

Q: Really.

A: Yes.

Q: Each one has a “book” about the future? Each book is different?

A: See, if we suppose that somewhere there is a record of past, present, and future, what some people call, for example, the Akashic Records, what’s the assumption?

Q: What do you mean?

A: What’s the common assumption about what these records reveal?

Q: You tell me.

A: The assumption is these future events are laid out, they’re described, they’re revealed. You know, THIS will happen, and then THAT will happen.

Q: Well, sure.

A: No. Something is wrong with that. I think people have been misinterpreting what the Akashic Records are all about. They’re taking too narrow a view. They’re looking through narrow filters.

Q: And if you take off the filters?

A: You see hundreds of different equally-convincing futures sitting there, side by side. That’s what’s in the Records. Not just one future. And what I’m saying is…

Q: The exact same situation is mirrored in your patients.

A: You bet. Exactly. In other words, the Akashic Records are reallydistributed in the subconscious mind of people. That’s where they are. It’s a whole vast library.

Q: Keep going.

A: This is the hard part. You have to be there with a patient, when he’s under hypnosis, to see and experience and feel how CONVINCING his “book of the future” is. It’s quite fantastic. It isn’t some little dribbling thing about what’s going to happen fifty years from now. It’s titanic. It’s as if you came across a whole block of hidden treasure in the patient’s subconscious. There it is, undisturbed, in a cave. No dust on it. It’s pristine and very detailed. And when the patient describes it, it just rolls out. It’s a river of information.

Q: That’s pretty spectacular.

A: Here’s what I’ve found with some patients. They’re already living in the “book of the future” that’s in their subconscious. They already have a role in that future.

Q: Even though they’re here and now…

A: They’re acting in the present according to their role in the future. It sounds weird, I know. But that’s what’s happening.

Q: That would make a person pretty maladjusted.

A: Yes and no. No, because the power of that “future role” is so strong, they are acting in the present to bring about that future. That’s what they’re doing.

Q: But they have no idea they’re doing it.

A: None. They’re totally in the dark. Until they get a look at the future book in their subconscious. Then everything changes for them. Then they open their eyes.

Q: It’s funny, you’re turning the traditional view of psychology on its head.

A: Yes. Supposedly, what’s happened to you in the past has a tremendous influence on how you act in the present. What I’m saying is, the future that’s embedded in your subconscious is a much stronger influence on how you act in the present.

Q: It’s as if a person has been cast in a stage play that’s going to take place in the future.

A: Yes, let’s say the play is going to take place four hundred years in the future. But you start acting out that role right now.

Q: So the present is the sum total of all futures?

A: (laughs) Yeah. That’s what I was getting to. The present moment in Earth history is the sum total or average of all the futures that are embedded in people’s subconscious.

Q: All right. What happens when a person becomes aware he has a whole future embedded in his subconscious mind?

A: He recovers power.

Q: Just like that.

A: When he sees what that future is, a tremendous amount of energy is suddenly available to him. How can I put this? It’s as if he has this 5000-piece orchestra in his mind. He doesn’t know that, all right? But he’s a trumpet player in that orchestra. That’s his future role. And in one way or another, perhaps symbolically, he’s acting out that role in the present, right now. But because he can’t hear the whole orchestra, he doesn’t feel the overall power. Then, under hypnosis, he finds the orchestra. He hears the whole thing. NOW the power of that transfers to him.

Q: And what does he do with that power?

A: Yes. That’s the key question. The answer is, he has to create with it. There’s nothing else he can do with it. That’s what the power is for. Here is the catch, the important thing. Now that’s he’s seen the future embedded in his mind, for the first time, he has a choice. He can use that power to create anything he wants to. It’s up to him.

Q: So in hypnosis, you give people the experience of power.

A: That’s what I’m doing. That power is magic. And to answer the question you posed, at the beginning, about what magic is, it’s not about entering into a space of magic. It’s really about creating.

Q: Creating magic.

A: With that power. Yes.

Q: The history of Western philosophy had three basic phases. The first episode was taken up in depicting What Exists as a final Reality. Metaphysics. The second episode shifted the focus to the investigation of how we perceive and know. Epistemology. And the third phase, which has barely begun, involves imagination and creative power—in other words, inventing that which has never existed before.

A: I would agree with that. Creating is magic.

Q: Extraordinary talents and so-called paranormal abilities are actually offshoots of imagination?

A: Talent, which seems to be a native and natural phenomenon, is created by the individual below the threshold of his own conscious mind.

Q: Why does the individual create talent he can’t remember creating?

A: (laughs) He wants to be a human being who can do extraordinary things. He doesn’t want to step out of the shadows and reveal himself as a magician. Here is the real question: what do you do when you are imagining and creating enough of unique reality that it glides past the eyes of others like a silent and invisible train?

Q: You see the need to bring others to perceive the level at which you’re creating.

A: Maybe so. Because if you are creating magic, you will run into many, many, many people who are blind to that. They won’t see it. They just won’t see it.

Q: Let’s get back to this “book of the future” in a person’s mind. Any idea where that comes from?

A: I think so, yes. In one sense, and you have to look at this from several points of view…in one sense, the “book” is basically a long-term creation by the person himself, out of bits and pieces.

Q: It doesn’t come down from some “higher power.”

A: The higher power belongs to the person. But I would go further. In some sense, the person has already been to the future.

Q: Explain that.

A: It’s hard to put it into words. It’s more than [the person having] an opinion about the future. It’s more than [the person engaging in] mere prediction. It’s that, plus other factors. It’s supernatural or paranormal, for lack of better terms. The person has already been there. He’s been to the future. He’s gone beyond where it’s supposed to be possible to go. It’s not just seeing. It’s more like traveling. It’s a combination of creating and traveling.

Q: That’s pretty far-out.

A: Consciousness can travel. Consciousness isn’t bounded. It can go anywhere. But we assume that isn’t so. We live by other rules.

Q: What do you mean by that last sentence?

A: We’re invested in a picture of reality. In that picture, certain things are possible and certain things aren’t. We bought stock in a restricted picture of reality.

Q: Why?

A: Well, I could give all sorts of answers to that question. It depends on what level we are looking at.

Q: Level of consciousness?

A: Yes. Consciousness doesn’t necessarily see a limited picture of reality as a negative thing. It sees it as an opportunity. A configuration, if you will. You’re a painter. You can paint on a tiny canvas or a huge one. Both have their advantages. Do you see? We’re able to have different and unique kinds of experiences within this picture of reality that we’ve bought. We have different options. Even though we’re living inside this picture of reality, it’s an infinity. There are an infinity of things we can do. It’s just, you might say, a different infinity of things than what we could do inside a much larger picture of reality.

Q: So you’re saying that, inside this picture of reality we’ve bought, magic isn’t supposed to be possible.

A: I’m sort of saying that, yes. The extreme boundaries [of this picture of reality] are fuzzy. But you see, there are rules and then there are Rules with a capital R. They’re different.

Q: How so?

A: Rules with a big R…that would be a final kind of judgment rendered by some external higher power. That would be, “No, you can’t do magic in this sphere [picture of reality].” That’s not what I mean. That’s not the case. We set our own rules. We bought our own picture of reality, this reality, and we set the standards and rules. So we can break them. It’s possible. It’s going against the grain, but so what? We can do that.

Q: It’s like undoing a habit?

A: Yes. For example, we have the habit of stashing what we can’t create or are not supposed to create—where do we stash it? In the future. That’s where we can put all the things we don’t do inside this picture of reality.

Q: Which creates a kind of longing.

A: Yes.

Q: A nostalgia for the future.

A: Right.

Q: And wouldn’t you say that, at this point in the history of Earth culture, that longing is increasing?

A: I would. So we have a collective force that is building up for the magic that we have put in the future. That desire is growing.

Q: In that sense, then, the limited picture of reality we’ve invested in is expanding?

A: Yes. The more important sense of “expanding universe”…this is what it is.

Q: Can this picture of reality expand to the breaking point?

A: That’s what I see.

Q: We’ve had enough.

A: We’re tired of it. We’re fed up.

Q: That’s a natural outcome?

A: Oh yes. I would say it is.

Q: Because when I look at the history of the arts, that’s what I see there. The trend, for some time, has been in the direction of cracking apart the old picture.

A: Sure. I would agree. But you see, in that process, you need people who can understand what, for example, the arts are doing.

Q: Meaning what?

A: You can have, say, a hundred thousand people who are breaking apart the old picture, but what happens if…let me put this another way. When you break apart the old picture, you’re changing the modes of perception. That goes along with the breakthrough. You’re actually speaking another kind of language, one that has different meanings. And those meanings don’t exist inside the old picture of reality. This is crucial to understand.

Q: You’re saying that, in order to keep existing inside the old picture, you have to restrict the field or the range of meaning.

A: Absolutely. You see? Inside the picture, you can express a whole range of meanings, but if you go outside that range, it doesn’t compute. It doesn’t get across. That’s one way you actually hold the restricted picture together. You restrict the range of expressions and things that MEAN SOMETHING. People limit their comprehension of meaning. So if you come along and start talking with meanings that go outside the accepted range, people scratch their heads and shrug and say they don’t understand.

Q: As an analogy, it’s like the light spectrum.

A: Right. We limit the range of what we can see. So if someone comes along and shows us a wave-length that isn’t in the so-called visible spectrum and says, look at this, we say there is nothing there.

Q: It’s the same thing with meaning.

A: Yes. We have languages that, by their structure, permit a certain “territory” of meaning. It’s big. But it isn’t everything. Not by a long shot. And as long as we hold on to these languages for dear life, we’re going to claim we have a monopoly on all possible meaning.

Q: And therefore we’re going to harden the structure of the picture of reality we’ve bought into.

A: Yes. It’s that structure that’s weakening. People are accepting meanings that are borderline. They’re stretching their comprehension.

Q: Everything we’re talking about here has the ring of a state of hypnosis.

A: It’s programming at deep levels.

Q: Self-inflicted.

A: That’s what many people find the hardest to accept—that they’re hypnotizing themselves.

Q: Hypnotizing themselves into believing that MEANING can only exist within a narrow framework. And everything else is complete gibberish.

A: That’s called society. Civilization. That’s what you get as the collective outcome. That’s why people will sign up for going out and trying to expand various empires through conquest. Because essentially, they’ll blame everything else under the sun for the programming they’ve inflicted on themselves. Of course, it’s all done on an unconscious level.

Q: It’s been my contention that consciousness creates more consciousness, and in that sense, existence is dynamic. There is no such thing as a “final” state of consciousness.

A: That’s a very fertile area. You’re going against the idea that there is an ultimate reality.

Q: That’s right. Whether you look at reality as something external to us or internal to our state of consciousness, there is no final place where you wind up and discover you’ve reached the destination.

A: Every experience I’ve had with patients tells me the same thing. And what we’ve been discussing here—pictures of reality—that also confirms it for me.

Q: We buy this picture of reality, because living inside it, we can create more and new consciousness, consciousness that never existed before.

A: Every reality affords the same opportunity. People have the wrong idea about infinity. They say, for example, that there is a state of infinite consciousness—but you see, that’s really like saying you have all the consciousness there is to have. That’s not so. You never have it all, because you create it, and creation has no limit.

Q: Infinite consciousness isn’t like some gigantic coat you can slip on. It doesn’t already exist.

A: No. We keep creating it.

Q: This limited picture of reality we live in—how long can it last?

A: As long as we want it to.

Q: But the individual doesn’t have to wait for everyone else to break out. He can exit from the picture.

A: Sure. But other people won’t necessarily understand he’s escaped.

Q: Because other people are still loyal to all the restrictions they’ve programmed into themselves.

A: It’s a tug of war. Old meaning versus new meaning. Science, for all its advances, is still basically married to old meaning. Old ways of formulating language.

Q: Old meaning has a kind of structure.

A: It gives birth to many structures, but they all obey the same old rules. They may be fascinating and instructive, but they still obey the old rules that say, “THIS means something, but THAT is meaningless.”

Q: I remember a philosophical text called The Meaning of Meaning. It was actually about literary criticism. IA Richards.

A: You can actually analyze “old meaning” and see something about it how operates. For instance, if words describe what exists in the physical world, those words mean something. If you have a sentence that has a subject, verb, and object, the sentence probably means something. But if you have a sentence that obscures or erases the distinction between subject, object, and verb, then that is often called “meaningless.” When you stop and think about it, though, why? Why can’t we understand and comprehend outside that linguistic structure? The answer is simple. We’ve HEAVILY programmed ourselves NOT to understand anything outside that structure. We’re ABSOLUTELY sure it’s meaningless. That’s how good the programming is.

Q: So there is a major connection between magic and language.

A: Language, as we usually accept it, is built to rule out magic.

Q: The language we use rules out many possible relationships between things.

A: It also rules out the KINDS of relationships that are possible. See, let’s take this example. A man looks at a radio on a table and he focuses on it, and it rises three feet into the air. Most people would say, if there was no trick involved, that was magic. But it’s still within the realm of subject, verb, and object. We may not believe the event happened, but we understand what it means. But there is another level of magic, where the basic relationships of subject, verb, and object are gone. New kinds of relationships enter in. We don’t have words in our language to describe those relationships. So we don’t see them. They’re invisible. This would be magic that is invisible to us.

Q: Based on different kinds of relationships.

A: Right.

Q: Then we have people who attempt to explain mysteries by claiming that things we already know about are the cause of that mystery. Like genes.

A: Sure. These scientists try to make their speculations into respectable theories. They’ll say that all human behavior is explainable by genes. You have a gene for this and a gene for that.

Q: There is, for example, they’ll say, a gene for imagination.

A: Imagination is a mystery to them. They want to explain it away. So they claim a gene controls it. Language does the same sort of thing. It attempts to reduce mysteries down to relationships we’re programmed to accept, relationships we’re familiar with. But in the process, it misses the magic completely.

Q: You actually see this kind of programming in your patients?

A: All the time. You just have to want to find it. I’m NOT talking about making hypnotic suggestions to people to guide them where you want them to go. All I do is use hypnosis to put them in a light trance where they can focus more clearly. Then we nose around in the interior landscape. We see what’s there. Patients encounter their own programming. They encounter…it’s not exactly RULES…it’s more like cardinal illustrations of the kinds of relationships that are meaningful…it’s almost like looking at the simple grammar of our language.

Q: But you don’t try to dismantle that programming, do you?

A: Why should I? That would be like saying we should all destroy the English language. Ridiculous. That would be like saying that, in order to teach a person to fly, you lead him out on a cliff, and then you blow up the cliff under him, and then he’ll fly. No, you use the cliff as a platform, and then one way or another, you figure out a way to fly off the cliff into the sky.

Q: Well, if you look at the history of poetry, that’s what you see. Poets who use the language to keep stretching “the meaning of meaning.” The expansion of meaning and possible relationships between things.

A: Which is why imagination is magic.

Q: I would say that on this planet, imagination is just getting started.

A: I agree. My new experimental ideas about therapy are all in that direction. Getting people to invent realities.

Q: Whereas society is moving in the direction of turning out androids.

A: Societies always do that. It’s their bread and butter. They create Reality Soldiers. People dedicated to the picture of reality we’re living in. It’s the organizing principle.

Q: There are lots of names for that.

A: Doesn’t matter what you call it. It’s the same pattern. You’re trying to organize people. It works up to a certain point, and then it doesn’t work anymore. The already limited picture of reality shrinks. It becomes a pressure on the psyche, and the psyche wants to break out.

Q: But people always think that when they break out, they’re going to find a super-reality sitting behind ordinary reality.

A: Well, basically, when you break out, you don’t find ultimate reality. You find you’re the reality. Which makes absolutely no sense at all unless you’re creating. You’re the center, and you create.

Q: For many people, that’s an idea they don’t understand.

A: For them, it’s an invisible idea. It goes right by them, and they don’t notice it.

Q: There are lots of smart people who try to use the limited picture of reality to explain itself.

A: If I understand what you mean, that’s like asking an elephant to describe his digestive processes. But let me take that ball and run with it. There are sociologists and psychologists and futurists and computer types, information analysts, who try to make predictions about the future based on the concept that events and people are in a meaningful flux. They document trends. They see what seem to be random occurrences as moving toward a meeting place, where they will combine to produce an important change. They factor in all sorts of aspects, from earthquakes and weather to population shifts, to the innovation of new technology, to political developments, to what is happening in markets, and so on—all these factors—and then they make their predictions.

Q: They believe in Pattern.

A: Well, that’s the whole point. They believe the background context of the picture of reality contains moving parts that conspire to produce change, sometimes momentous change. They might not admit it, but they think the conspiracy of these moving parts is inherent in reality itself. They, the researchers, are searching out these relevant moving parts, and they’re pretending to see how the flux is coming to a place where the parts collide and make something very important happen. What’s significant is that these people are smart, they’re in good jobs, they’re listened to, and they constitute a kind of elite. They are opinion leaders, you might say. Everyone thinks they’re a “new intelligentsia.” This is the supposed cutting edge of knowledge. It’s a cultural phenomenon that these futurists have risen to the top of the heap. Here’s what is basically happening: by assuming that there IS some inherent pattern in the ways things work in this picture of reality, by assuming that this pattern comes together at certain moments to produce THE FUTURE, we have a new class of people who are, actually, RE-ENFORCING THE PICTURE OF REALITY WE’RE ALL LIVING IN. While other people are breaking apart the picture, these futurists are shoring it up. And I think you’re going to see a lot more from these so-called experts…because the Reality Soldiers are becoming more desperate. They feel the ground rumbling under their feet. They sense that the cluster of Old Meaning is breaking apart and new meanings are leaking in. They don’t want that to happen, so they’re floating a spurious science of prediction, they’re claiming that the picture of reality can tell us “all about reality”…but that is a sham. It’s not true.

Q: Fake science is being invented all over the place to cement in the old picture of limited reality. The dam is breaking, and these people are trying to patch it up.

A: Yes. You can see that everywhere. For example, in the area you cover as a reporter, health and medicine, the old picture is disintegrating. People are realizing that disease can be best understood by taking into account the whole body, not just one piece here and one piece there. And if you take into account the whole body and the whole person, the picture of reality gets bigger, and what passed for correct assessment in the past is outmoded. This is viewed as a threat. So researchers keep inventing fake diseases and mental disorders to try to keep the old picture in place. And they’re failing. I think that’s also true on a larger scale. I hope we’re going to see extremes of new meaning leaking in all over. Then we’ll see some magic.




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