By Nick Jankel

Author, Keynote Speaker, Leadership Theorist, Transformational Coach, Wisdom Teacher, Co-Creator of Bio-Transformation Theory & Practice®

Sound Healing: Shifting from surviving to thriving

Stressed out, depressed, or in physical pain? Sound healing and gong baths are a powerful way to shift your being from suffering and ‘surviving’ into thriving. Plus, you get to enjoy a blissed-out state of consciousness too. Even if you’re healthy and feeling fine, a sound healing or gong bath can give you a super-charged sense of peace and well-being. Tibetan singing bowls are used along with toning, chanting (insert link to Chanting article) and other instruments to bring harmony and health and balance to your body and mind. And no, gong baths don’t involve any water. Instead, you are bathed in delicious sound waves from the gong, bringing you to a deep meditative and blissful state.

The Healing Power of Sound

You might have experienced the healing power of music already. Maybe at a difficult time in your life you played a song that has special meaning for you because of the feeling it evokes, which you found comforting. Sound healing therapy uses the vibration of sound in a targeted way, to fine tune our bodies, mind and emotions. This helps us to relax completely, sleep better, improve concentration, and even increase our confidence. Sound healing can help with depression and fatigue too.

During a sound healing or gong bath, which typically lasts an hour, you simply lie down in comfortable clothes on a mat (supplied by the practitioners), close your eyes and relax, letting the sounds wash over you. Sound healing tools such as crystal bowls, chimes, drums, rattles, and the voice are used to create a sound-scape that is deeply relaxing and healing. In a gong bath, your brain will find it difficult to follow the sounds of the gong, and so you will probably go into a deep meditative state at least once during the session. Your body may twitch as your chakras (energy centers) and meridians (energy channels) are cleared. You may also have sudden insights, perhaps solving a problem or receiving a creative idea.

It can be a little intense: some people have out-of-body experiences or feel connected to everyone in the room. But everyone’s experience is different. At the end of the session you will be gently brought back with softer instruments such as tingling bells. Make sure you drink water after a sound healing or gong bath.


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Where do you Start with Sound Healing & Gong Baths?

If all this is tickling your curiosity bone, you can start dipping your toe in with gong CD’s. While they’re not as immediate as the real (live) experience, they do offer a taste of the experience of a gong bath meditation. Reiki (healing) music CD’s are one place you can begin for general sound healing experiences at home. You can experiment and see what you resonate with. And if you want to go deeper into the waves of sound, there are sound healing therapists all over the world who offer both private sessions and small group drop-ins of sound healing and gong baths. Some sound healing therapists also offer distance sessions over the phone.

From Beta to Theta: How Sound Healing Works

Everything in the whole universe is vibrating all the time – even things that appear still, and even the cells of our bodies. Sound healing works by using the frequencies of vibrations that heal. Gongs, for instance, vibrate at the same frequency, or ‘resonance’, as the body’s cells. This puts the body in the best state to heal itself. As we are made up of up to 80% water, our bodies are brilliant conductors of sound.When you experience a gong bath, your brain waves change from a Beta (waking state) to Theta & Delta (deep meditation state).

These brain frequencies bring out the resources – like intuition and clarity of mind – that we need to switch from depression to a more uplifted state. The vibrations of the singing bowls in a sound bath also affect your sympathetic nervous system, causing deep relaxation. At the same time, your brain, heart and respiratory rates all slow down, along with the pain reflex. And if all the vibration stuff sounds a bit whacked to you, get this: sound healing is backed up by science. For example, modern medicine uses sound frequency-emitting machines to break down kidney and gallstones.

From Aborigines to Ultrasound: A little History of Sound Healing & Gong Baths

Sound healing isn’t a new invention. Many cultures throughout history, such as the Aborigines, have realized how powerful sound is. Medicine people have long used sound to bring about healing and transformation. It has been said that sound is ‘the beginning’ – what was there before anything in the material world appeared. For centuries the Tibetan Bowl has been used by people who wanted to change their state of consciousness and reach a deep meditative state. Around 6000 years ago, the gong was discovered, and was used to call workers in from the fields. The gong was used then and now to start meditation practice, in the Buddhist culture. But in the West, sound healing became unknown until a resurgence in the 1930’s, when ultrasound was discovered. Now sound healing is developing from an art into a science.

How will this help you to transform your problems and pain?

Sound healing and gong baths are ancient tools with modern uses to bring body and mind back into balance, combating depression, confusion and low energy so we can feel more fully alive.


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