Holistic Health Practices/Part 37
|By: Dr. John Ankerberg, Dr. John Weldon; ©2009|
|The audio and audio-visual self-help industry is a multi-billion dollar enterprise. People everywhere pay hundreds of dollars for instructional materials on buying and selling real estate, weight loss, improving self-image or bettering school performance.|
What is subliminal programming?
The audio and audio-visual self-help industry is a multi-billion dollar enterprise. People everywhere pay hundreds of dollars for instructional materials on buying and selling real estate, weight loss, improving self-image, bettering school performance, etc.
Many instructional tapes are helpful, offering straight-forward learning sessions. Others employ the principle that repetition of common sense guidelines for living help integrate sound thinking patterns into one’s life – much in the same way Scripture memorization does.
But audio/visual tapes that are used for questionable or occultic purposes also exist and should be avoided. For example, many tapes make false claims or encourage visualization to experience altered states of consciousness or out-of-body experiences. Tapes that make false claims, are unrealistic, or promote a personal self-image based on distortions are not likely to be helpful.
Secular and Christian “subliminal” tapes are an example. The Oxford American Dictionary defines subliminal as “below the threshold of consciousness,” as in advertising that seeks to influence a viewer without his conscious perception. The widely heralded claims as to the effectiveness of subliminal tapes are questionable at best. In 1990, Psychology and Marketing devoted two special issues to the subject, noting that ineffectiveness and fraud were evident. Because subliminal messages cannot be heard by normal means, unreputable promoters can easily sell bogus tapes and make large profits. Nevertheless, even when message are present, those who have independently researched the claims for subliminal programming have concluded that there is no evidence that subliminal messages can influence motivation or complex behavior.