ble. CHAPTER XXVI THE HYPNOIDAL STATE AND SUPERSTITIONS The hypnoidal state into which man is apt to fall so easily, is well adapted to fear suggestions, since the fear instinct and the impulse of self-preservation are present in the subconsciousness, exposed during trance states to all sorts of fear suggestions and superstitions. It is during these brief periods of primitive hy

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pnoidal states that the animal is exposed to attacks of enemies whose senses become sharpened to detect the weak spots in the armor of their victims, immersed in the momentary rest of the hypnoi



dal state. During these periods of repose and passivity or of sleep stage, the animal can only protect itself by all kinds of subterfuges, such as hiding in various inaccessible places, or ta



king its rest-periods in shady nooks and corners, or in the darkness of the night. Each hypnoidal period closely corresponds to the larval stage of the insect, reposing in its cocoon,—the most

, free


man is yet to

critical time of the insect organism, most exposed to the depredations of its enemies. And still the hypnoidal state is requisite[265] to the animal in order to restitute its living matter and e

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nergy which have been wasted during the active moments of its life activities. Hence the weakness of the animal depends on the very constitution of its organism. The hypnoidal state, although


absolutely necessary in the process of metabolism, is also the moment of its greatest danger, and the fear instinct is specially intense at the onset of that hypnoidal moment, the lowest point


of the weakness of the organism. The animal, after taking all precautions, is finally paralyzed into temporary immobility at the risk of its own existence. The fear instinct determines the nature and character of rest and sleep. The lower the animal, the scantier are its means

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in snatches, rapidly

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