Many people ask me what sound healing is. This article provides my insights into this through some of the experiences of the clients that I’ve had. Many of my clients are women in their fifties and sixties whose children have left home and who are exploring how to maintain good health as well as find meaning and joy in their lives through their work, leisure time and relationships.
Janine came to see me about eighteen months after suffering a stroke. She still had some physical issues with walking and balance but otherwise she had worked hard and made a very good recovery. One of the main things Janine was dealing with, however, was her relationships with her family and managing her stress levels. Sometimes she tends to take on too much and she can also get frustrated with not being able to do things to the same capacity as she was previously able to. She was suffering from feelings of loneliness and sadness and wasn’t sleeping well.
The sound healing process for Janine involved focusing on deep relaxation and stress release techniques to promote gentle healing. Another aspect was encouraging the use of meditation and other sound techniques to use outside the sound healing sessions to manage stress. Debriefing after the sessions allowed for some insights to come up regarding her own and others’ behaviors that affected her. Some of the tuning fork protocols for balancing the nervous system and well-being as well as releasing anxiety were useful for Janine.
What Janine liked about the sound healing sessions was the way she felt so relaxed afterwards. She can now fall asleep, rest and recover. Some of the recommendations that were given to her, for example, practicing humming, vocal toning and alternate nostril breathing have been helpful to her in coping with stressful situations. Sometimes she feels overwhelmed and humming helps her to block everything else out and to bring her focus to her inner self. Janine realized how much less her pain is when she is totally relaxed and how much more easily she can move. She believes that she has been able to make more progress with the activities she is involved in on a daily basis and to stay more motivated. Janine is becoming more self-observant. She is reflecting on ways that she could respond differently in different situations and is practicing these. She also feels that she is strengthening her community and meeting a whole new group of positive people. During the sessions there was quite a lot of body twitching happening for Janine especially in the hands and feet. This usually indicates the movement of energy. She has begun to get some more movement in her right foot. A lot of childhood memories came up during the sessions. Using the Buffalo drum to match Janine’s high level of tension at the beginning of a session and then bringing this slowly down worked well.
Ellie came to me for sound healing sessions when she was in her late fifties. She was working as an academic and was experiencing long-term exhaustion and stress, and suffering from a chronic lung condition and skin rash. She felt that her immune system was depleted and her energy was very low. She had some relationship issues with her boss and some members of her family.
The initial sessions focused on deep relaxation and nourishment. The stress relief was immediate, significant and lasting.
The focus expanded to boosting the immune system using the weighted tuning forks on the body and crystal bowl triads were played for taking on new challenges and a series of mantras and gong work for releasing and to break through Ellie’s resistance to healing her lungs and her skin. Ellie’s skin eruptions began to diminish over this period and she became more willing to consider and transform her beliefs around her lungs being able to heal. There was also attention given to life direction by using the tuning forks. There was some releasing in the sessions of past sadness and grief through emotions, body sensations and sometimes, a few tears.
As the sessions progressed Ellie seemed much more relaxed and there was a softer edge to her interactions. She did quite a bit of reflection on her own behavior when interacting with others. Elle’s relationship with her boss transformed significantly during her sound healing journey. She was also able to be more insightful and approach challenging conversations in a more effective way.
She began to have increased energy levels and is no longer feeling tired when she wakes up like she was previously. Ellie mentioned in her testimonial that there had been improvements to her immune system, energy levels and skin rash.
Ellie has made lifestyle changes that fit well with her personal philosophy about connecting with nature and looking after the environment. Ellie had a big breakthrough in one of her final sessions where she moved past her resistance to change. In the week following she had some important realizations and made some big life decisions. She has been able to reimagine her life in a better way and has said that in the future she would like to also reflect on how her job could be quite different and more positive.
Ellie also felt that the sessions had had a positive impact on her emotions. She feels she does not have as many extreme highs and lows and feels more empowered to handle more challenging situations and emotions around them.
The final session was a mellow one and Ellie said that she found the session very soothing, relaxing and restorative. She said that the vibrations from the crystal bowls were very powerful, especially when ‘singing”. She could feel them moving across her like a wave. She was very much in her head space when she arrived so working with the tuning forks around the head and on the head was wonderful. This was a lovely way to end the series of sessions, being more settled, peaceful and in harmony, giving opportunity for further reflection and embedding of the changes and the learnings.
Principles of Sound Healing
Sound healing works on a multi-dimensional level: physical, emotional, mental and spiritual. The ancient sages, masters and enlightened communities knew and understood the significance and importance of sound as a sacred instrument of immense power and potential for not only healing but spiritual development. The scientific and modern day spiritual communities are only now starting to access this ancient wisdom.
“As many of our modern physicists understand, energy and matter are interrelated. Thus, if all forms of energy are putting out a vibration, all that energy can be considered sound, whether we can hear it or not.” (A. Goldman & J. Goldman).
Optimum health occurs when we are vibrating in harmony at our natural resonant frequency. Each aspect of our being has a unique resonance. When one or more of these resonant frequencies begins to vibrate out of balance, then illness can occur.
Sound healing tools can help to restore one’s inherent vibration in a number of ways. One of these is known as sympathetic resonance. Through the projection of the sound tools’ pure vibrational sounds, the waves go to the area of imbalance and the weak or dissonant frequency is transformed and optimal resonance is restored. Another way that sound healing works is through brain wave entrainment. Sound frequencies can be used to slow the brain waves to the alpha-theta border, a deeply relaxed and optimal state for healing to occur.
“Through the process of entrainment, sound can transform negative, repressed emotions into a state of psychological equanimity that has direct and immediate effects on our physiology.” (Mitchell Gaynor)