Mesmerize, a transitive verb which means to spellbind, to enthral, or to hypnotize. People often use this word and most of the time interchangeably with hypnotize. However, few know where this word originated from.

Franz Anton Mesmer from Swabia, Germany was born on the 23rd of May, 1734. He was a German Physician who researched about the effects of magnetism on a human body to further improve the rate of recovery of the sick. His earlier works involved a study on the effects of Planets on a human body much like how the Moon affects the Ocean tides. This would later lead him to discover Animal Magnetism.  To explain in simple terms, Animal Magnetism can be understood with the following concepts:

Human beings and other animals possess a certain magnetic force;

Human well being is dependent on a well flowing stream of life in their bodies. When these flow get obstructed, the person becomes sick; and finally,

Humans who possess a stronger Animal Magnetism can cure another who is sick and restore the flow of life of that human.

One may find a close similarity to the practice and belief of Chi in Chinese Philosophy of theFar East. Both are very much similar and have parallel ideologies, however with Mesmer’s background in western medicine and science, he took up research to better explain the phenomenon as close to scientific terms as possible. He took his findings to France, which at his time, was very much open minded to new ideas. The medical and scientific society was rather reluctant to assess this alternative and very much unorthodox concept of Mesmer’s. Eventually, the scientific community and medical colleagues did accede and gave him merit for his work, but ‘twas only during the final years of his life.

To know more about Mesmer’s legacy and his discovery of Animal Magnetism, go to or send a response to for free lessons.

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