A favourite among fakirs and geek magicians, the nail through nose routine is as legit as can be. You just out and out do it. There’s no special nail or special hammer, or heaven forbid, a special nose that you get to use to do this.
And oh, prepare for excruciating pain if you happen to do this wrong. A world of excruciating pain.
The ability to control another person with but a gesture and the tick-tocking of a watch? Sign me up! Most people have very skewed notions of how hypnosis works, always thinking that it’s a simple process of achieving total mind control, when in reality, hypnosis involves surrender on the part of the person you hypnotize. It isn’t a simple process, and the whole procedure is so easy to disrupt: a mere misplaced word or gesture, a less than clear instruction, and all of it would add up to a very unsuccessful foray into hypnosis.
Hypnosis is real, but it’s nothing like mainstream media’s portrayal of hypnosis. A trance takes a lot of effort to achieve, and a subject who plays along with the hypnotist, is, for all intents and purposes, considered a success. With all of these factors, it’s a wonder we’ve actually had some professional hypnotists over the years, because their rate of success is directly proportional to the willingness of their subject to be hypnotized. The minute their quarry is outright defiant, things get a lot trickier, and it requires a lot more work than is well within the capacities of the average hypnotist.
Using hypnosis for medical purposes has been attempted, with varying degrees of success. Hypnotherapy, for the longest time, hasn’t had very convincing results to be worth pushing as a mainstream approach to dealing with addictions such as smoking, alcohol, or drugs. No mean feat, and hypnosis, with its lofty position in the minds of the layman, continues to fascinate and inspire a multitude of responses from all walks of life.