Friday, February 29, 2008

A Solomon and Hypnotism


A story is told in Collier's Weekly of a judge who lately had the hypnotic plea raised before him by a burglar. The prisoner claimed that he did not know that he was "burgling," that he did it automatically and unconsciously, under the direction of a hypnotist.

The judge said he would give him the full benefit of the law, and also of his hypnotic misfortune. He therefore sentenced the man to five years' penal servitude, but told him he could, if he chose, send for the hypnotist and have himself made unconscious for the entire term of his imprisonment.

"The same power," said the judge, "which enabled you to commit burglary and not know it ought also to enable you to suffer imprisonment with hard labor and not be aware of it. At any rate, this is the best I can do for you."

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