Sue Pready, our sound healing practitioner, discusses how sound healing actually impacts the body and mind in part 2 of our our sound healing series:
Previously, I listed the five main areas of life in which sound healing comes into its own as being:
1) Vocal expression such as toning, singing, chanting, laughing; 2) Using instruments such as Tibetan bowls, gongs, drums, tuning forks and other musical instruments; 3) Sound healing therapy – where a person receives a sound healing treatment from a sound healer; 4) Self-healing – using sound healing exercises for self-healing and 5) Music – to relax, reduce pain, uplift our spirits & calm a person before surgery.
Today I’d like to show you some of the ways in which sound healing actually works to bring us potentially immense benefits in everyday life:
“Toning” is simply vocalising a vowel sound. We do this naturally in everyday life – often without realising it. Every time you happen to groan, sigh, laugh, or say “aah” or “ow” you produce the sound called toning. And these sounds that we produce through the body help to remove tension and pain, release pent-up energy and re-establish a natural flow – leaving the body more calm and cleansed.
In sound healing, when we deliberately focus on elongating each vowel sound either individually or in a group, the natural healing or ‘feelgood’ effect upon us increases.
To be more precise, each time we vocalise a sound in this way, it creates a vibration in the body that acts almost like a massage on the bones, tissues, cells and fluids of the body. This is because the hypothalamus and pituitary gland are close to the roof of the mouth – and the vibration of toning acts on them to release chemical hormones throughout the body. This in turn helps to improve our immune function, increase right & left brain balance and stimulate the “rest-and-repair” function of the nervous system.
In sound healing, when we set our loving intent to ‘tone’ for the purpose of e.g. healing, the natural healing or ‘feelgood’ effect upon us is once again increased. “Intention” is one of the fundamental principles of sound healing.
Toning is something that is really easy to include in your daily life. You can do it when driving, in the shower or resting at home – just by using the vowel sounds of A E I O U.
One of the numerous different ways of toning the vowels is simply to take a deep breath and, as you exhale, start with the “A” sound (can be AY or AH). Then, when you exhale again, chant the “A” sound. Do this about 5 times for each vowel. You can always increase the number of times you repeat them.
Equally, you may like to sound a flowing sequence or melody with the vowels? You may like to tone over a (continuous) drone sound such as from a shruti box or a drone CD* …? If my experience is anything to go by, you might enjoy it so much you won’t want to stop!
And on that note, I shall leave you with these 3 sound reflections:
1 “The voice is the most powerful healing instrument – particularly when the person needing the healing produces the sounds with his or her own voice. Several major physiological systems responded to the simple act of sitting quietly and giving the mind a focus (such as sound or music): the metabolism decreased, the heart rate slowed, respiratory rate decreased and there were distinctive brain waves”.
Herbert Benson, Cardiologist
2 “As you learn more about toning, as you develop your ‘healing voice’, listen to your body, listen to your heart, listen to your intuition, listen to your soul, listen to your sound, listen to the silence, listen … ” Wayne Perry, ‘Sound Medicine: The Complete Guide to Healing with Sound & the Human Voice’
3 “One of the simplest ways to calm your mind, stabilise the rhythms of your body and improve your voice is through toning or humming”. Did you know that Mozart hummed when he composed?
Don Campbell, ‘The Mozart Effect’
* The CD of ‘The 7 Healing Drones’ is available from The College of Sound Healing: http://www.collegeofsoundhealing.co.uk/buy_college_cds.php
In my next blog, I will be looking at ‘humming’ – plus giving an overview of some of the different types of sound healing treatments I offer at The Letchworth Centre.
If you would like to experience a sound healing treatment or come along to the summer sound healing workshops please call 01462- 678804 or come in to the Centre.
(in the context of a journey through divorce)
“Here’s the feedback on your encouraging phrase during my worst recent moment. You mentioned that I would find: ‘…deep within your current challenges you will find many tiny sparkling seeds of love and light almost too beautiful to imagine – and all waiting for the chance to emerge like fireflies on the dawn – to light the way for you and your family …’
These were the sparkling seeds of love and light I found:
In grief – I found deeper love to give
In hopelessness – I found greater faith in Universal Source Creator
In darkness – I found complete trust that my way would be illuminated and guided
In poverty (!) – we found enjoyment of simplicity (country walks) and trust in providence.
I found resources of strength, focus & much insight through listening to my inner wisdom”
Ms A. N. (Hertford)