Sound Healing #1

SOUND HEALING

With

TIBETAN  SINGING BOWLS

          

Sound  Healing with Tibetan Singing Bowls is a rather complex matter and before  approaching the subject regarding the uses of Tibetan Singing Bowls in Sound  Healing, I thought it useful to begin this series of articles by a general  overview of the subject on sound healing.

 

SOUND HEALING

             Interest in the healing applications of sound has grown greatly during the  closing years of the last century. From the very beginning of time, each one  of us has been surrounded by the healing sounds of Nature, e.g. this could be:  – the wind in the trees, birdsong, waves, burbling streams and waterfalls,  whales, dolphins, fire, thunder and that silence experienced deep within  ourselves. In very ancient times there would only have been the voice for use  in sound healing – perhaps accompanied by dramatic body gestures eventually  including primitive instrumental percussive sounds such as stalagmites,  stalactites, drums, and shakers. Something of this form of sound healing has  continued to this day in the folk medicine of various peoples in what we may  term shamanic healing. 

             However, such ideas are not entirely new. Nonetheless, they may only recently  have gained a wider public familiarity or acceptance. Actually, even during  the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1, Dr Thomas Campion practiced lyrics and vocal  compositions for healing patients, whilst George Frederick Handel said ‘I do  not wish to amuse my audience, I wish to make them better’, whilst the  Theosophically inspired composer Alexander Skryabin had composed a work  intended to remove all the past Karma from all those attending the event! But  the foundations behind the science of sound for health – physical, emotional,  psychic, mental and spiritual – actually have their roots in periods much  further back in time – even in the Atlantean times. The Ancient Mystery  Schools in various cultures studied and practiced the use of sound for  specific purposes. Perhaps one of the best known masters of such a mystery  school, was Pythagoras. Numerous stories survive relating to his deeper  understanding of sound and music. He is most popularly known nowadays in  relation to the so-called ‘Music of the Spheres’. Pythagoras also taught that  there is both an exoteric and esoteric nature to music. Even in our Bible we  find David playing his harp and other references to the power of sound and  music whilst in both Sufi and Vedic traditions, this inner nature of music was  ,and still is, practiced in order to heal numerous conditions and also to  assist in entering altered states of consciousness, or to reach similar  sublime realms of Self-realisation.

             Why is sound so important? It  has been said that the sense of sound is normally the first sense acquired at  around 18 weeks inside the womb and that it is commonly also the last sense to  leave us at death. Accordingly, there have developed specialist sound  therapies for the very young and also for the dying. However, it is clear that  the first function of the ear of the foetus is to give food to the brain. The  work of Dr Alfred Tomatis states that 60% of the electrical energy of the  brain is obtained through our ears. In his theory (1974) Tomatis speaks of the  charging effect of sound, especially high-frequency sound, on the brain.  Through their action on the corti cells of the inner ear, the great majority  of which are responsive to high frequencies, these sounds increase the  electrical potential of the brain. Nevertheless, ongoing research has yet to  discover the full neurological significance of sound during this 9 month  gestation period. Tests have shown that from as early as 6 months after birth,  babies display highly developed abilities to recognise musical structures,  which continues developing throughout adult life. Sometimes, as a result of  lack of funds (e.g. in the CIS), certain doctors have been led to study the  effective use of music or sound to release endorphins to reduce pain and  thereby obfuscate the need for drugs. Similarly, in Germany (although not as a  result of financial deprivation), a certain Dr. Ralph Spintge heads a pain  clinic which now has a database of over 90,000 patients showing the effects of  music upon the patient.

              For the most part, interest in sound healing in the West has  taken the form of the application of various types of Music. As colour is the  very foundation stone of the art of painting, so too, sound is the very basis  of music. Nowadays, thanks to the invention of sound recording, there is a  huge variety of global music to choose from. Again, from around the middle of  the last century an interest in the ethnic music of other countries really  took hold here in the West. By the close of the 20th century we could walk  into any record store and find numerous classifications of music from  classical, folk, jazz, rock, pop, light, fusion, world music, new age, with  many sub-divisions such as reggae, funk, soul, fusion, acid house, grunge, hip  hop, jungle, rave, samba, and in classical:- neoclassical, contemporary,  minimalist, post-minimalist, new complexity, etc.

              We each have a voice and can sing, and many forms of the ‘self-help’   school of sound healing focus upon ways of improving the quality of our lives  through teaching such practices. Once again, from ancient times the chanting  of a mantra would achieve a similar result. Certain primitive instruments allow each one of us to work with instrumental sound. Bells and gongs are especially powerful in this respect. The only  difference being that a practitioner possesses a large range of different  sounds for several conditions and has gained deep experiences of working with  such sounds for many years.

              However, whilst all of this music contains sounds, these sounds  are used according to different philosophies or structural techniques of  composition; different tuning systems, modes, scales, etc. Because these are  comparatively advanced systems of using sounds, in comparison to shamanic  forms of sound healing, perhaps it is more helpful to think of  them as Music therapy.

             Countless books were written on Music Therapy and many of these added detailed  descriptions of how certain classifications of music, or the music of  particular composers, would affect the listener. By and large, this consisted  of the music of established classical composers and was largely for use in  clinical situations but gradually as the century neared its end, more books  were concerned with how we as individuals could influence our life and health  by listening to certain forms of music, or even creating music or sounds  ourselves. The principles of Music Therapy can include: Melody, Harmony,  Rhythm, Timbre, Intervals, Scales, Modes, Resonance, Pitch and certain  acoustical phenomena.

              Sound Healing itself takes many forms – not unrelated to the  musical ability, or otherwise, of the practitioner. Whilst yet other forms of  sound healing are purely mechanical and stem from the physics of sound such as  can be found in Cymatics and other derivatives. Cymatics is a word conjured by  Dr Hans Jenny for describing his work studying sound-vibration or the kinetic  realm of sound. Hans Jenny was able to build upon the work of such  acousticians as Ernst Chladni via the invention of electricity. He was able to  control precisely the tone and amplitude of each sound and then study their  beautiful visible patterns and forms created in numerous materials upon  several plates or diaphragms. Thanks to Hans Jenny, we can share in seeing the  results of his research through the films and photographs that he took of  these resultant forms created purely by sound vibration. His work has formed  the basis for a deeper understanding of how sound or vibration affects the  whole human body. Peter Guy Manners applied certain of the  findings of Dr Hans Jenny via developing a machine through which a combination  of five specified sound frequencies (vibrations measured in cycles per second  – cps [five were used when I shared a platform with him in the early 80s – it  may have changed by now]) could be applied to specific areas of the body. The  rationale is based upon the theory that each organ or member of the body has  its own vibratory rate that changes according to its condition of health e.g.  it would be considered that a certain healthy bodily organ vibrates at say  250cps whilst a diseased one could be vibrating at a different speed (say  261cps) but by playing the vibration of 250cps to it the organ will be  encouraged to return to its healthy vibratory rate. Such an approach teaches  that our physical body is actually an intricate and interconnected resonating  energetic system. According to Dr Manners, by transferring the healthy  frequencies, applied through the physical medium of the Cymatics machine, on  or as near to the region affected as it is possible to get, health can be  restored through the law of sympathetic vibratory resonance. This approach  could be seen as something of a mechanistic approach operating still within  the Newtonian paradigm. Similarly, the Monroe Institute exploits certain  acoustical phenomenon alongside other techniques in their Hemi-sync treatments  – although Bob Monroe also states that he believes that this technique  originated with the Tibetan Singing Bowls. Fabien Maman has been active in  this sphere for some considerable time (almost 20 years at the time of writing  the book below) and his findings, as put forth in his book The Role of  Music in the Twenty-First Century, shows a sequence of pictures of cancer  cells without sound for 21 minutes and then the beneficial effect of playing a  gong to these same cells over a further 21 minutes. He depicts the same with  xylophone, voice, acoustic guitar and tuning fork.

             More recent developments in this ‘technological’ approach to sound therapy  involve sophisticated computer software capable of analysing the speaking  voice to find tones within it that are stressed, or (the reverse) completely  missing. It is even possible through such a system of analysis to determine in  advance which diseases are latent in the tone of voice and which will  manifest.  Sophisticated developments within this system of treatment now  also allow  it to detoxify specific poisons in the body. It brings to  mind the ancient Chinese saying ‘There will come a time when man will be known  by his sound, not by his name’.

             To a certain extent we could say that Resonance is the fundamental Law applied  in Sound Healing. Resonance is usually demonstrated with two tuning forks of  exactly the same pitch. One tuning fork is sounded and then placed upon a hard  table top which already has the other tuning fork resting upon it. The first  tuning fork is then stopped and we notice that the second tuning fork is  actually sounding – although it hasn’t been struck or stimulated in the usual  manner. What occurs is a transference of vibration from the one to the other  because they each resonate in perfect harmony with one another. Resonance  is thus concerned with the ability of a vibration to reach out, through  vibrational waves, in order to stimulate a similar vibration in another body.  In other words, it triggers a response in a vibratory medium that is composed  of a similar frequency.

             The application of this theory relies upon this phenomena of resonance, for  the soul qualities of the sound being used resonate with the soul of the  recipient awakening into action, through resonant vibration, those very  qualities which will restore equilibrium to the troubled soul. Ideally, the  sound healer must also resonate with these same qualities, be these either  upon the emotional, mental, spiritual, or physical levels (or any combination  of these) of both the angels of healing and spirit healers, the instrument  (sound), and the client.

              This demonstrates another basic difference in ways of working  with sound: –

    · Sound  (or music) is played around the client

    · Sound  is applied to specific parts of the client’s body

    · Sounds  are produced by the client as therapy

 

              When we apply a more holistic view, by incorporating the several   ‘bodies’ of the client, we encounter different techniques again. For  instance, when working with the consciousness we will apply our knowledge of  different brain states such as Alpha, Theta, and Delta. Certain instruments or  sounds (such as didgeridoo or Tibetan singing bowls) might assist the client  to connect with these altered states. Again, if treating the astral body, we  would apply etheric colour rays to the chakras thereby reaching that level of  the client’s being. Again, we may wish to engender specific thoughts during  the healing, because the cause of the disease is considered to have originated  from unhealthy attitudes of thinking. On yet another level, we may be seeking  to reach the soul of the patient because the cause of the disease lies there.  It could be that the individual may have become unbalanced through contact  with certain spiritual energies or is struggling in the passing of one of  life’s great (spiritual) initiations – and has encountered a degree of  suffering causing serious imbalance, or there may even be unhealthy psychic  attachments or, at its worst, psychic attacks.

              As is the case with many practitioners of alternative or  complementary therapies, I use the appropriate admixture of all of these  approaches during an individual session. However, I primarily work now (since  1984) in this field of Sound Healing using only the Singing Bowls of Tibet. It  is a form of sound healing which I have organically unfolded since 1978.  However, in 1981 I realised that my growing collection of sacred Tibetan  singing bowls carried the most potent subtle energies for my particular work  in this field – it needn’t be the case for everybody.

             There are many ways of using the bowls in Sound Healing. Some practitioners  simply supply a kind of ‘Sound-Bath’ wherein the relaxing qualities of the  bowl sounds help the person to relax. Others move bowls up the body of the  patient and listen to see whether the bowl changes its sound at a certain  place on the client’s body. If, and when, this happens they continue playing  that bowl until it sounds right believing that this will correct the  inharmony. Again, some practitioners may simply use one single bowl which they  strike and then move in their own style above the length and breadth of the  patient’s body. Yet others place bowls upon the head and body of the patient  and play them from there. Some have removed metal from their bowls in order  that they might be in-tune with Western pitches which certain systems have  then aligned with planets, chakras, colours or whatever via a simple system of  correspondences. The most common of these systems arises from the polarity of  Low to High within the sevenfold Rainbow wherein the Lowest vibratory Colour  (Red) relates to the Lowest Chakra (Root), thence to the First (or Lowest)  Note in our Western Scale (C – to which Key our pianos are organised)  and then to the sLowest planet (Saturn) and so on up. This would present us  with the following correspondences: – Red/Root Chakra/ Saturn/C – whilst all  astrological systems ascribing colours to planets (of which I know) agree on  one planetary colour and that is Red for the planet Mars – thus providing us  with a problem at the very outset of this system of correspondences. It might  also be worth mentioning that a tremendous amount of military marches (Mars  god of War) are written in the key of C Major.  There are no fixed  systems, as such, for an amount of intuition is inevitably at work at this  early stage of bowl sound healings. I, myself, do not use this common system  of correspondences. For instance, when studying the correspondence between  certain vocal sounds and the chakras, even as detailed by numerous gurus,  there are differences. Of course, if you are following the teachings of a  particular guru, then it is wise and necessary for you to follow his or her  particular order of correspondences.

 Photograph by Poplar

What follows is an introductory   description of my system of SPIRITUAL SOUND HEALING working with the Ancient Sacred Singing Bowls  of Tibet:

 

            Frank’s  particular form of Sound Healing also exploits the unique  psycho-acoustical properties of specific Bowls selected for their ability to  resonate with certain healing energies. However, overall, the sounds of the  bowls also relax the body and lower the blood pressure whilst also providing a  form of cerebral stimulation. Overall this produces both a sense of well-being  and increased energy.

            Traditionally  used for meditation, such sounds are also suitable for deep relaxation whilst  also helping to open the listener to an emotional dimension beyond the  personal so that emotions of a religious or spiritual nature are made more  accessible regardless of particular belief systems.     

            The  treatment also helps with certain emotional/psychological states, which can be the  cause of physical problems, i.e. fear, anger, stress, depression, frustration,  sadness, impatience etc. Tones from the bowls balance the chakras, bring the  subtle bodies into alignment, and create a balance between the right and left  hemispheres of the brain. They shatter accumulating negative energy within the  chakras and the aura. They restore the circular flow of energy within the  aura. The bowls and their unique tones have been used to restore blood  pressure, correct asthma and emphysema, and even rebuild adrenal function  after failure from steroid intake. They open and balance the meridians of the  body and they improve the synapse response in the brain. They have been used  with hyperactive children and they can help stimulate the immune system. Most  importantly of all, they link us up with our Higher – Divine Self and so  enable us to restore the harmony at very deep soul levels.

            These  specific sound healing treatments are also especially suited for helping us to pass the  several ‘tests’, which many of us face during certain periods of our lives  whilst travelling the Spiritual Path. In unfolding his sound healing work  Frank has been guided by his spirit guides/teachers and masters of The Great  White Brotherhood, his own past-life memories and, since 1973, studies and  researches into the healing aspects of sound, music, and his Singing Bowls.

            For the sessions he will have a collection of 67 ancient Tibetan Singing Bowls  especially suitable or specifically designed for Sound-Healing work. The bowls  are generally placed upon the floor above the patient’s head. Stroked bowls  are also played from here. On rare occasions he will place one or more larger  bowls upon the stomach of the patient. Frank uses these special Bowls  alongside visualising the appropriate colours, for the individual  sound-healing session, applied to the patient’s chakras and whole aura to  assist the Angels of Healing in their work. This is after he has looked at the  condition of the chakras. Traditional Tibetan healing incense is also used  during the session, unless incense is uncomfortable for the client.

            A sound healing session typically lasts 60 minutes with an additional 15 minutes afterwards to come  back down and for any discussion. The patient is encouraged to  wear loose and comfortable clothing. The patient lies down upon the  floor with their arms by their sides and they are advised to keep their eyes  closed. A blanket is nearby if needed.

           Frank uses specially selected bowls   in order to balance left and right hemispheres of the brain – enabling us  to access both sides of the brain at once – in every session. Bowls are also  selected which help us to enter Alpha and Theta brain wave states – these  are usually associated with various ‘altered states’ including meditation,  and ‘out-of-the-body’ experiences enabling the patient to undergo a deep  inner journey with the healing angels.  Yet other bowls resonate with  certain specific spiritual vibrational energies which will be lovingly  communicated to the soul of the client upon the deeper inner levels whilst  being sounded.

            At  the close of the session either a Tibetan Meditation Cymbal or a special Yang Bowl is  struck three times to signal to the patient that Frank’s work has finished  and that, in their own time, they gently come back down to earth.

            Frank first trained in spiritual healing in  1965, when he discovered that he was a trance-medium (channel) and then,  again, in 1971 with The White Eagle Lodge. He has practised as both an Absent  Healer and Contact Healer since that time. Psychic from birth, psychic gifts  can be traced back through both sides of his family for several generations.

            Frank also began his lifelong career in music in 1964. He has appeared  on 100 albums (LPs, MCs & CDs) with 55 of these being solo releases. He has a collection of over  600 percussion instruments – mostly sacred metallophones. He has given over  three hundred solo concerts since 1970 throughout the world contributing to  many international festivals/events. Since 1978 he has also given over three  hundred workshops/lectures, mostly concerning the Singing Bowls of Tibet, upon  which subject he is an acknowledged world expert. He started to focus on sound  healing in 1979 and he began seriously unfolding his Spiritual Sound Healing  with his  Tibetan Singing Bowls in 1984.

            Frank studied Spiritual Astrology in 1973 and trained in The White  Eagle School of Astrology and has practised as a Spiritual/Karmic Astrologer  (looking into people’s ‘past lives,’ karma, etc) since 1976. Since 1989  he has used certain specially designed Singing Bowls to assist people in  discovering their own ‘past-lives’ or ‘Far Memories.’

            Frank brings all these unique gifts to bear in contributing towards his  own unique and highly individual form of sound healing. 

 

           Frank is a member of IAST

(International Association  of Sound Therapists)

 For a deeper exploration of Frank’s unique form of sound healing with Tibetan Singing Bowls go to Sound Healing #2.You might also wish to view the article ‘Sound Healing with Tibetan Singing Bowls’ from 1999 Caduceus Magazine.  

 

You  may like to view the 1998 Channel 5 demonstration  of Frank’s sound  healing on youtube. Paste the following into your browser: –

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=PvVS-VUt0vQ

 

Frank can provide personal one-on-one healing sessions at his home (@ £40 for  a 75 minute session) in Ringwood, call Frank or Rose Perry on:  01425-470168 or  email him:

INFO@frankperry.co.uk  

These  home sessions are between the hours of 11am and 3pm Monday to Friday. 

 

 

         Sound  healing sessions have also on occasions been arranged to happen after One  Day/Week-End workshops at various events around the country. To see whether  one is occuring near you, please check on the events  page on this site. 

 

         Relevant  here are the two CDs THE HEALING BOWLS OF TIBET which  contains WITHIN THE PETALS OF THE ROSE a track specially created for its sound  healing effects – an excellent way to follow-up on treatments, and CHAKRA  HEALING with 7 pieces for working with each Chakra and more recently DEEP  HEALING (PEACE)

 

For any  of these please:

The  same applies if you’d like to receive the catalogue  of tapes & CD’s or be added to the events  list mail out.          

Frank Perry, 3 Drake Close, Ringwood, Hants,  BH24 1UG.  

©   Copyright by Frank Perry 1997 slightly revised 2003. All rights reserved.    

©   Frank Perry, 1997. All of these articles are copyright. They may individually  be copied and shared with others in a spirit of knowledge-sharing and fair  play, but they may not be sold, printed or reproduced in quantity or changed  in form without the permission of the copyright holder. None  of this material may be reproduced in workshops or lectures of any kind unless  quotes are credited or properly attributed.    

 

Magazine and other editors may e-mail me for  permission to reprint. E-mail:  

INFO@frankperry.co.uk 

 

  BIBLIOGRAPHY.

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Beaulieu,  John: Music and Sound in the Healing Arts.     (1987)

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Campbell,  Don: Musician: Physician for Times to Come.     (1991)

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Campbell,  Don: The Mozart Effect.   (1997)

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Goldman,  Jonathan:  SHIFTING FREQUENCIES   (1998)

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Storr,  Anthony:  Music and the Mind.   (1992)

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Zuckerkandl,  Victor: Sound and Symbol: Music and the External World. (1956)

Zuckerkandl,  Victor: The Sense of Music. (1959)

Zuckerkandl,  Victor: Man the Musician. (1973)

 

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