How Can Simple Sound “Heal” the Body … and the World?

Harmonic sound frequencies have been used to demonstrate and create harmony and balance in the body for thousands of years! Many ancient teachings focused on music as the main force for harmonizing the body and spirit, for affecting the emotions, and even effecting cures. From Egypt to China, India and Greece, cultures have honored the therapeutic powers of sound and music as well as the power of the mind to influence our very genes! Music is the most ancient of all the “healing arts.”

Let’s consider some of the definitions of the word “sound” …

  • a vibrational energy which takes on the form of waves;
  • a particular auditory impression or tone;
  • a mechanical radiant energy that is transmitted by longitudinal pressure waves in a medium (such as air) and is the objective cause of hearing.

The pioneering composer, recording artist and researcher, Steven Halpern, PhD, even describes sound as “the carrier wave of consciousness.” In other words, depending upon where an individual’s awareness is placed when he creates a certain sound, the sound will carry information on that state of being to the person receiving the sound.

This is obvious in the activity of talking in which the awareness intended to be conveyed by the speaker is formed into words that carry the information of the speaker’s intention to the receiver. We can further relate to the intention of the speaker when we interpret the pace or volume of their speaking or hear their “tone” or inflection.

Dr. Alfred Tomatis, MD, a French otolaryngologist who has studied chanting throughout the world, believes that one of the basic functions of the ear is to provide, through sound, both a charging of the cortex of the brain and of 90-95% of the whole body! Nearly all cranial nerves lead to the ear! The ear is involved with the optic and oculomotor nerves affecting vision and movement; and with the vagus nerve, affecting the larynx, bronchi, heart and GI tract. So that’s vision, movement, breathing, heart rate and digestion all affected by the EAR!!!

This is why musical tones can have such a profound effect on the body. In fact, the work of Dr. John Diamond, MD, in the field of behavioral kinesiology shows that “outside” substances – from vitamins to chemicals to sound waves – cause our muscle tissues to be either strong or weak. Further, he showed that the main aspect of what made music “strengthening” or “weakening” depended on the intention of the person creating the music!

This was remarkably demonstrated in an experiment in which a colleague was asked to listen twice to a piece of classical music precisely performed by the exact same orchestra but led by different conductors. His colleague was muscle tested and asked to monitor heart and respiratory rates while listening.

The first conductor was a man who seemed to be loved and revered by the classical community and really seemed to be in touch with the flow of music that was being created; as if he was a conduit for the music. While listening to the music led by him, the colleague’s muscle test showed strength in his muscle tissue, his heart and respiratory rates were slow, and he was able to breathe deeply and regularly.

The second conductor was equally as skillful and proficient but was known to be a very strict and regimented perfectionist with an inflated ego. While listening to the same orchestra perfectly perform the same symphony but led by this conductor, the colleague’s muscle test showed weakness, his breathing was shallow and his pulse, faster.

This is a subtle but huge example of how intention behind sound affects our physical wellbeing. Beyond how different types of music make us feel, let’s consider the impact in other areas of our daily lives. What is the intention behind the words we speak to others and (especially) to ourselves? What volume, pace, inflection or tone do we use? What types of sound do we allow to vibrate in our own muscle tissue, fluids and bones? What’s the intention behind the sounds we receive? Are they affecting us in a strengthening or a weakening way?

Let’s get back to a couple definitions …

Sound waves are scientifically measured in units called “hertz” (hz) which measure the cycles per second which the energy of those waves creates; this is objectively known as “frequency” and subjectively experienced as “pitch.”

“Resonance” is the natural vibratory rate of an object … any object. Frequency, pitch and resonance are apparent in voice or musical instruments but every cell, tissue, organ, bone, fluid, etc., in our bodies has a healthy “resonant frequency” of its own that produces a “harmonic” pattern.

Viewed under strong microscopes we could see that everything — including the human body — is in a state of vibration which means everything has a frequency and a resonance … SOUND!  This means our own bodies are creating fundamental tones and harmonics! We are a virtual symphony!!

This is why it matters … these patterns and rhythms of frequency and resonance operate as generative factors in our lives!! For instance, if the resonant pattern of our muscle tissue is one of tension, we may likely “be” tense; if the pattern in the flow of our bodily fluids is restricted, we may also “be” or feel restricted in our lives and not able to “go with the flow.” Reasonably, when the healthy “frequency” altars and the vibration is out of “harmony,” we may generate disharmonious states in our bodies and lives.

Other researchers have shown:

  • how guided imagery used with music elicits certain emotional responses;
  • how sound affects change in the molecular structure of our fascia which plays an important part in the connection of synapses of the brain; and
  • how actively (intentionally) listening to harmonic frequencies makes us better listeners to the messages of our body and to the Uni-verse (“one-song”) thereby generating harmony globally.

As within, so without; as without, so within.

With the understanding of how “outside” influences have the ability to either strengthen or weaken our tissues and altar their resonant frequencies, we begin to understand how easy it is to be “out of tune” and for that state to be a “normal” way of life. Consider what we may be generating from disharmonious resonant frequencies … whoosh!

“We can begin to use these audible vibrational frequencies as our allies and healing partners.” ~ Steven Halpern

Fortunately, there are several practices to help bring these resonant frequencies back into harmony!! Learning about muscle testing or somatic sensing can help us recognize whether a substance “resonates” with our body. Regular breathwork and/or yoga practice helps in “yoking” the mind and body and bringing them into harmonious resonance. And regular, intentional immersion of our bodies — our cells, tissues, organs, bones, fluids — in harmonic sound frequencies can give a “general tune-up” to our entire system.

During these sound immersions, we have the opportunity to quiet any disharmonious “noise” of daily life and allow the harmonic tones to re-harmonize us in ways that the busy brain can’t analyze. There are no lyrics or melody to which to attach our thinking mind … we’re simply invited to slow our system, actively listen and BE.

As an Integrative Somatic Sense Practitioner, I gently assist with sensing your own resonant frequencies and creating flow where energy may be “stuck” or “blocked” in the body. Regular sound immersions and other practices are scheduled at SouLounge Spirit Retreat as well as private personal and group sessions by request at your place or mine.

I look forward to sharing some harmonious vibrations and to generating our resonant frequencies out into the Uni-verse!!!

Lizzie Kay Moon ~ Integrative Somatic Sense Practitioner


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