Sound healing has the ability to transform and heal in so many ways and with as many styles as there are instruments and people on the planet. One significant benefit is its’ ability to shift brain wave patterns to create optimal brain states for focus, creativity, activity and sleep.
You are probably familiar with the idea that the brain emits different frequencies depending on what you are doing in the moment. For example, beta frequencies are most prevalent when you are active, alert and focused, alpha when you are relaxed and creative. Theta is that magical place just before sleep and upon waking where intuition and new ideas live and delta is the frequency of deep dreamless, rejuvenating sleep.
Our brains work best when balanced and synchronized, just like the rest of us. And brain synchronization occurs mostly in the alpha and theta brain states. Does this mean you can never be active (beta) and synchronized? Of course not. We are never in only one brain state, but each type of activity has a dominance of that particular frequency.
If you look at discordant brain states such as Attention Deficit Disorder, OCD, anxiety, depression and bipolar to name a few, there is a high likelihood that the brain has less synchronicity or connection between right and left hemispheres than in those without the disorder. Synchronicity increases focus and would require more alpha and theta frequencies to be present. Many times there is a genetic link with mental disorders and illness, yet science is now saying that genetics is no longer your fate. The brain continues to adapt as well as increase and improve connections in accordance with your experiences.
Environment is a key factor and what is your environment but the frequencies that surround you.
It has been shown that individuals with Attention Deficit Disorder have difficulty staying in the low alpha brain state. Why this happens is complex and may be different for each individual. However, environments that include discordant frequencies would, over long periods of time, eventually effect the balance and flow of the brain through entrainment. Entrainment is a well known phenomenon where you shift vibrational frequency to harmonize with the strongest vibration or energy around you. This would be especially true of young children whose brains are more plastic and adaptive.
The increase in mental disorders may be reflecting on the whole of a society that has become “out of sync” with the natural world.
The earth, that great big ball of energy and vibration we walk around on emits a frequency called the Shumann resonance. This frequency is about 7.8 Hz. Now remember what I said about the frequencies that create the most synchronicity in the brain, the alpha-theta state. The alpha-theta states meet around 7 Hz, right in line with the earth’s background frequency. It is also the state associated with meditation, healing and feelings of calm and inner peace. This is why many people feel they can think more clearly out in nature.
Sound healing through voice and instruments, rhythm and the use of intention are another way to create environments in harmony and connection with nature. An alpha-theta state is most often the intention when working with people to access relaxation, healing states and altering consciousness for self awareness. A sound healing environment saturates cells and strengthens optimal frequencies in the body eventually effecting the brain rhythms. More specifically the complex tones and rhythms can create binaural beats or frequencies “heard” internally by the brain, which directly influence the brain to create harmonic and synchronized brain states.
Ideally all brain states would be balanced, synchronized, accessible and sustainable for the task at hand.
Immersing yourself in more harmonic environments is a great starting point to begin working with sound healing and its benefits. Music, singing bowls, singing, chanting and drumming are all avenues to creating rhythmic, high vibrational atmospheres. For most people it can fine tune the brain states and open up access to and exercise those states that create more synchronicity and balance. States not often deemed important in the modern world. And yet being able to be alert and synchronized, focused and relaxed would do much to improve daily life for most people. Access to intuition, memory and enhanced creativity would help many to move through life with more confidence, less stress and an increased feeling of connection.
It is important to remember as well that there are complexities and layers to the discordant brain states that need to be acknowledged and addressed. Greater imbalances require more guidance and skill when using sound healing techniques. What began in a discordant environment as an imbalance may become coping behaviors and a set of complex belief systems that explain or rationalize what has happened. Trauma is another precursor to discordant brain rhythms as the emotions that come with trauma are often overwhelming and may have no avenue to be felt and processed. Eventually the “stuck” emotions create imbalances in the energy currents of the body to which the brain then entrains. Beliefs and emotions must be worked with gently as new insights, ways of being and of seeing the truth are integrated into everyday life.
Creating safety as well as having guidance and support are so vital when moving more deeply into the terrain of sound healing for all. Much like you wouldn’t go run a marathon tomorrow unless you are already in tip top shape, have no injuries and have a lot of experience in long distance running, so the sound healing experience must fit your readiness and build itself into your system through time and practice.
Often clear intention and time for integration are enough to have enjoyable, harmonizing and uplifting experiences with sound.