The last time I saw Dave Dobson was in the nursing home in Friday Harbor located on his beloved San Juan Island.
Dave had retired to the San Juan Islands but I pulled him out of retirement to begin doing Fun Shops again.
He was one of the most amazing and incongruent teachers I ever met. Amazing because of the keen insights he had on human nature and helping people evolve. And incongruent because of his fear that someone was going to rip him off and steal his life’s work.
At times Dave would roar “Rip me off dammit. Just use my stuff.” And at other times, he would accuse people of stealing his teachings.
And after a lifetime of teaching, he made sure no one else would be able to do his work.
He left behind no writings other than a book I had transcribed for him as a birthday present.
His Fun Shops recordings aren’t very useful to people who can’t see the non-verbals Dave was using.
And the video recordings Dave hoarded will probably never see the light of day and even if they did – Dave forbade anyone from ever explaining his work.
That’s why 20 years from now, no one will have heard of Dave Dobson – one of the greatest hypnotists who ever lived.
On the other hand, there is a legacy of teachings of Milton Erickson.
Maybe some of the people teaching Ericksonian hypnosis got it wrong.
Maybe they are mis-teaching what Milton tried to give over.
But Milton spent a life time making sure his techniques and content got out there.
He cooperated with the researchers. Made abundant videos available.
Today, there are conferences all over the world teaching Ericksonian hypnosis.
Today, there are many excellent practitioners of Erickson’s techniques all around the world.
But there are no Dobsonian practitioners.
And I’m sure the Ghost of Dave Dobson is not happy.