Kevin Hogan

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Excerpted from: A Course in Metaphors Copyright  Kevin Hogan

An advanced home study program in changing behavior, and reprogramming minds.

  • You learn by metaphors.
  • People buy because of metaphors.
  • You think in terms of pictorial metaphors.
  • You change others’ thoughts with metaphors.
  • You literally determine your happiness (very much unconsciously) by metaphor.
  • You determine your income by metaphor.
  • You determine the quality of the person you spend your life with by metaphor.
  • You determine the quality of that life by metaphor.

…and you determine all that is in control in your future…by metaphor.

Who will benefit from this?

  • Salespeople
  • Marketing People
  • People in Relationships
  • Therapists
  • Anyone who needs to gain compliance in any situation

This course in utilizing metaphors includes almost all new information to you and is nothing like you have ever thought of or learned before. Better: You’re going to see why most people teaching and using metaphor are impotent (whether in selling, therapy or relationships) and how to avoid the same mistakes they make.

I hesitate to write about metaphors because when you get past the simplistic view of metaphors as they are currently taught in the fields of hypnosis and NLP, you can get into some waters that are difficult to navigate.

I’m going to show you how metaphors work, how to reprogram your mind or anyone else’s with them, and I’m going to make it a fairly simple task. The most difficult moment is now, because you are learning what metaphors are and how they work. After understanding is gained today, it becomes much easier!

Metaphors literally shape the brain and they literally determine in large part your view of the world and everything about that world, past, present and future.

Let’s see what I mean:

“The Pope is the Father of the Church.”

The Pope is the Father. That means that if I am Catholic, then I must be a child or descendant of some kind, of the Pope. THAT means that I have certain attitudes toward parents and the church, which are probably correlated. I may rebel against both, or I may be subservient to both.

In your brain there are many associations about the Pope. Perhaps they might be:

  • Infallible,
  • old man,
  • the boss,
  • speaks for God,
  • tells people how to live.

That picture might look like this at is currently wired in the brain:

    Speaks for God----Pope---- Old man  
                   /  \
                 /  Speaks for God  
  Tells People how to live    /

(We’re pretending that there are five immediate responses to the word Pope in the unconscious mind. There are probably more, including powerful emotions.)

In your brain there are many associations about Father. Perhaps they might be:

  • Provider (or not) for the family,
  • Role model,
  • someone to obey,
  • someone to help you when you really need it, the boss,
  • he doesn’t understand,
  • tells you what to do,
  • loves you.

In your brain there are many associations about the Church. Perhaps they might be:

  • A building,
  • a place that brings comfort,
  • a place that is boring,
  • the flock,
  • confession for absolution,
  • priest,
  • God’s house,
  • communion.

Now. With all of the immediate links to the thoughtforms of Pope, Father and Church, you can make some assumptions.

You could guess that “Pope” and “Father” have some similarities in some areas, and some areas that don’t seem to overlap. Both tell you what to do. Depending on all of the rest of your programming in your brain, “telling you what to do” could be a stimulus for behaving or rebelling (or some mixture of both). One thing is certain, you have no idea without knowing a lot more information.

Legend Point! If you were to use a metaphor like this with someone, and not know what their programming was, or you didn’t lay down programming in their mind before using this metaphor, you will have successfully used a metaphor that could get you the exact opposite response/behavior of what you are hoping to achieve. You must discover what a person has been primed (predisposed) to respond to, prior to utilizing metaphor.

The balance of the metaphor is the Church, and the Pope’s relationship to it, as father. The same kind of mind map (which is more than a metaphor for what is happening in the brain) can be drawn here.

Your unconscious responses to Father and Church will directly determine your response to the Pope’s communiqué, and it will also change your pictures of all three of those stimuli for the future. (If you would rebel against your father, you would be more likely to rebel against the Pope and more likely to find the Church less appealing, though you MAY find it just as “family like.” Make sense?)

The metaphor, “The Pope is the Father of the Church” borrows the power of your actual feelings toward your literal father to create allegiance to the Church. In the days when fathers were obeyed, not questioned, and blindly followed, this was a good strategy for blind obedience to the Church. However in 2005, fathers, more often than not, do not have the same dominant power with and over their children. In a large minority of families, the Father doesn’t even play a role.

Is it any wonder the Church’s influence wanes today even as the definition of family is being redefined each decade? Perhaps a coincidence. Perhaps support that culture has it’s own metaphors that we adopt without thought…

“George Washington is the Father of our Country.”

(If you live in Poland, Singapore or Great Britain…or anywhere other than the United States, you might wonder what the heck I’m saying here! Bear with me.)

George Washington was the first President of the United States. In the same way the Church wants your allegiance, the country/government for many reasons, wants and needs your allegiance.

The need for obedience, devotion, and support again is wrapped up in the Father metaphor. Again, in 2005, we have a plethora of experiences to rebel against the wishes of the Father, and, at the same time, when the chips are down (9/11) we act like a family.

George Washington is analogous (read that as metaphorical) to all the other Presidents (in many people’s minds) and therefore the metaphor (may or may not) be useful for creating the desired response in someone’s mind in creating allegiance, loyalty and devotion to the country.

In a time of high patriotism, the Father of the country can have great and potentially powerful impact. The effect of such a halo can positively impact the other fathers in a country. Literally, someone’s father is often seen in a better light because the Father of the country (or the Father in the church) is experienced in a positive light. In a time of scandal, the Father of the country can call into account the potential misbehavior (real or imagined) of fathers throughout a nation. In other words, when the President takes part in scandalous behavior, other men who are fathers (including parents, husbands and priests) will often unwittingly be seen as scandalous.

Legend Point: It seems odd at first glance that you might view your father differently depending on how you view the President or the Pope, but it is critical to understand, that is precisely how the brain is wired.

The Ultimate Example: If your father was someone you didn’t like or respect, you can assume that the father of your children will be literally wired into that same network, sabotaging a family. The subtle intricacies of the mind are absolutely mind boggling. Until you understand the almost instantaneous connections that happen in the brain, you can perceive and misperceive neutral stimulus as a prime for extreme positive or extreme negative beliefs.

Indeed, if this was your father, and you are a father, you will have to fight to reconstruct opinions about yourself so you do not replicate those behaviors.

Now, I want you to have a bit more foundation before we determine what metaphors will move people and in which directions!

A Course in Metaphors: Introduction to Advanced Metaphor Mastery with Kevin Hogan

An advanced home study program in changing behavior, learning and reprogramming minds.


  • Volume 1 – Making Metaphors That Captivate Them
  • Volume 2 – The Secret Code to Making Magic Happen with Words
  • Volume 3 – Hypnotic Metaphors of Attraction

Who will benefit from this?

  • Therapists
  • Salespeople
  • Marketing People
  • People in Relationships
  • Anyone who needs to gain compliance in any situation

This course in utilizing metaphors includes almost all new information to you and is nothing like you have ever thought of or learned before. Better: You’re going to see why most people teaching and using metaphor are ineffective (whether in selling, therapy or relationships) and how to avoid the same mistakes they make. Then you are going to learn to elicit, construct and communicate metaphors that will literally begin to reformat the hardware of their minds.

You haven’t learned anything like this from Bandler, Robbins or even Milton Erickson. They all had pieces to the puzzle. By the time you are done with all the CD’s in this series you will be a master at understanding and communicating in metaphor.

A Course in Metaphors

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