Dr. Crabtree’s Memoir of a Trance Therapist is not a memoir per se, but an explication of his theoretical explorations over the years. It begins with his theory of hypnosis, how it evolved and its implications. He argues that an understanding of hypnosis is yet to be achieved by present-day researchers and theorists. His story is personal and human, letting us know how and why his thinking has developed as it has. He concludes that trance is the experiential foundation for all experience. This conclusion seeds his exploration of other human phenomena—how humans evolve and develop extraordinary abilities, how groups and culture influence individuals, and how individuals can intuit non-sensory knowledge and display paranormal abilities. He provides a historical, philosophical analysis of the human potential movement. To my surprise it began with Schopenhauer. Finally, relying on the philosophy of Charles Sanders Pierce, he argues that we are all immersed in evolutionary love, a universal process that leads us, our actions, and our world closer to perfection or God. I found it engaging for the most part, thought-provoking in the main, but lacking rigor. Some of what he proposes takes courage to state professionally and publicly, for example discussing clairvoyance, knowing outside the senses, and influencing events.
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