Abbe Faria — On the Life of a Pioneer Indian Hypnotist and His Contribution to Hypnosis

By Luis S.R. Vas
Broadway Book Centre
Rs. 295

Review submitted by: Ernest Pereira <>

I have always been fascinated by the story of this eminent Goan and could identify with him since, like him, I too was uprooted at a young age from Goa. Faria sailed to Lisbon in his mid-teens in mid-18th century and then to Rome where had to learn Italian and Latin while studying for the priesthood. He did well enough in his studies to be invited by the pope to preach to him in his private chapel. No wonder he was tongue-tied when, back in Lisbon, he had to preach to the Portuguese royalty and had to be rescued by his father with the whispered command: ‘Kator re baji’.

Racism ensured he could not advance in his ecclesiastical career in Portugal and decided to flee to France where he was caught in the French Revolution and did research in hypnosis, first  earning plaudits, then ridicule and ostracism, dying in penury but not until he had published a defence of  his theories in a book on Lucid Sleep.

Alexander Dumas turned him into a character in a novel but had the gall to insist tha Faria dis not exist except in Dumas’ imagination. But Faria had his revenge: when Dumas died he was buried in the same cemetery as Faria.

I can recommend this book to anyone for the following reasons: firstly, it is based on reliable sources like D.G. Dalgado ( Faria‘s original biographer) Noizet( Faria‘s disciple) and Faria himself. Besides it makes several contributions to a better understanding of Faria – a) it features Faria‘s sermon delivered before the pope, translated for the first time into English; b) it incorporates a summary of Faria‘s book on Lucid Sleep in Faria‘s own words. This is important because Faria‘s book is very difficult to wade through even for a specialist, but the summary contains the essence of his theory and practice and is accessible even to a layman; c) this book shows how the Kator Re Baji incident led Faria to discover the power of hypnotic suggestion. This has never been done before. And lastly if you want to try to hypnotise yourself using Faria‘s methods you can do so by following instructions on pages 78-80.

Also, the book has quite a few pages of interesting photographs, some rare.

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  1. Pingback: Abbe Faria - On the Life of a Pioneer Indian Hypnotist and His Contribution to Hypnosis | Medical News

  2. ivosouza

    I am glad to read so much material on Abbe Faria. Already as a student of Philosophy in 1964, I had delivered a speech on Abbe Faria in the Patriarchal Seminary of Rachol. I could not assess his work at that time. But now I am reading and writing about his achievements. I translated his sermon on the “Advent of the Holy Spirit”, delivered in the Sistine Chapel (or Propaganda Fide College), Rome, in front of Pius VI. I am glad that my grandfather Marcos Luis Bernardino da Conceiçao e Sousa taught in the “Escola do Abade Faria” in Candolim, Goa. I always admired him for his brilliant mind.
    Dr.Ivo da Conceiçao e Sousa (Calangute, Goa, India)

  3. Visit

    for great info on self hypnosis

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