In this second part to the two part intro, Alex, The Hypnotist, is under-way on his journey and comes face to face with his first zombie. It is his first chance to demonstrate to himself that he has become the person that he needs to be to survive in the new world.
He has trained himself by rehearsing scenarios in his head so that he can teach himself new patterns to run once he is out in the world. He has to rehearse these scenarios consciously, relearn, teach his subconscious to do things differently. This is a slower process than hypnosis. Hypnosis simply bypasses the conscious and tells the subconscious to do things differently so instead of learning new patterns we just ‘install’ them.
By patterns, I mean the order of subconscious events that lead to his behaviour. These can be a mix of thoughts, emotions, memories, ideas, sensations, images etc that pass through your mind before you’re aware of them that lead to your decisions in life.
I mention in the story that he cannot hypnotise himself. You will hear a lot about self-hypnosis, but this is more meditation. Hypnosis is the subconscious acceptance of suggestion, it requires both hypnotist and hypnotee. You cannot bypass your own conscious conscious faculty so you cannot hypnotise yourself, but you can work on your own mind through meditation and visualisation – it just isn’t as quick as hypnosis and is not the same thing.
In the next story, he finds someone else to hypnotise in order to help them survive.