What IS Sound Healing?
Well, it’s more than just the latest buzzword in wellness. Perhaps you’ve come across a flyer for a sound bath in the window of a local yoga studio, or maybe it’s an entirely new concept. Either way, you probably still have questions. As sound healing attracts more mainstream attention, many people are wondering, “How does it work exactly?” I was fortunate to learn a few things while studying to become a certified sound healer in San Francisco. Here’s how a basic understanding of sound and vibration can amplify wellbeing in our lives.
Disclaimer: this work is deep! Through personal experience, many of us know that music provides incredible relief. It triggers emotional responses and memories, then brings us to tears in one moment and conjures ecstatic joy in the next. Sound healing has been practiced as an alternative medicine since the birth of ancient civilizations around the world. Since humans first created music, we have been literally dancing and singing our traumas into healing. Music comforts us while helping us to process and release emotions. It’s only natural — we are hard-wired to express ourselves and seek connection within community. Take one look at the current state of our world and it becomes clear that now is the time for us all to be bold and cultivate strength to reclaim our voices on behalf of all who have been silenced. As an industry, sound healing is on the leading edge of shifting the ways we understand health and access to balanced wellbeing. Today, many major hospitals are incorporating sound into their integrative therapy departments.
Behind it all is vibration. Everything in the Universe is made up of matter vibrating at specific frequencies. This means that every cell, muscle, bone, organ, system, and even emotion in our bodies has their own frequency. We are impacted by sound on every level of being! Generally speaking, when our bodies are healthy, it means that everything is vibrating stably. Through the physics of sound, science has proven that sound creates, breaks up, and changes matter. Science has also proven that our emotional and physical health are linked, meaning that stress and stuck emotions can actually create dis-ease in the body that may manifests as illness in the long-term (I experienced this first-hand in the form of an auto-immune disorder). Sound healing is useful in its ability to effectively transform us on all levels: physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual. It’s about using vibration to support the body and create stability where there may be chaos or blockages. With these understandings, we can begin to use sound to cultivate consistent vibrations and create peace in place of stress. In a way, we see how vibration can become an ally on the path to balanced living, and a positive resource for supporting our health.
On a spiritual level, quantum physicists have proven that setting a focused intention produces real results in our reality. Intention is the final level of vibration that maximizes the potential effects of sound healing. When we engage in sound healing with a strong positive intention to heal and restore balance to our physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual bodies, the effects on every level of our being can be deeply felt.
So, with all that technical information aside, it’s time to play with sound in your own body! While you sing, hum, or even scream, be present to the quality of the silence that follows. In that silence, we can feel the effects of our intentions as the energies resettle in our bodies.
Here are some easy ways to start practicing:
Hum! Get buzzy.
So much of this is about playing with your body. Play with varied notes. See if you can make the sound that a certain part of your body is craving. Play around with matching the sounds you make with the shapes of your inner terrain.
Sing! If you have a voice, you can sing.
One of the coolest things about your voice is that it’s like a fingerprint. Your voice is made from the unique shape of your body, and it acts like an internal massage that is crafted exactly for your body. In case you need more reasons, let me hit you with:
Singing releases endorphins and anti-stress hormones
Singing increases proteins in the immune system
Singing stimulates deep breathing
It also clears our chakra system
Grab some friends and go wild. Sound healing is even more powerful when the energy of a community is behind it. So, have fun!
These are my favorite links to begin listening:
For chakra balancing listen to The Song of the Tree by Lis Addison
For Crystal bowls listen to Crystal bowls.
For sleep listen to Earth’s electromagnetic field.
For 9 freakin’ hours of tibetan bowls listen to Singing Bowls.
Stay healthy and sound on, baby.