Community & Spirituality

What's the Buzz With Sound Therapy?

Edger Cayce said, "The medicine of the future will be music and sound." While this may sound a little strange, we are witnessing this prediction becoming increasingly more relevant by the day. We have all experienced the healing power of music in our lives before. We have all been there when after a hard day at work, leaving the office stressed and in a foul mood, when while driving home your favorite song starts playing on the radio.

The day's problems start to melt away as we let the notes wash over us and clear our mind. We use music for this purpose all the time. Many of you are probably reading this while listening to music at work - I know I would be hard-pressed to get through the day without it!With the Holiday season here, there is no better example of sound changing and improving us than the music of the season.

There is no dispute that these songs have a power over us. Hearing these classics take us back to our childhoods, to simpler times of opening gifts and being with family. Just hearing the first few notes of some of these songs is enough to take many back to this time and place. We have used music to soothe and heal since the beginning of recorded history, and are still taking advantage of its power today. Still not convinced? Just hear us out.

A Five Thousand Year History of Sound Healing

According to the records of an ancient Greek traveler named Demetrius, the ancient Egyptians used vowel chants to support physical, mental, emotional, social, aesthetic, and spiritual healing. Tibetan monks have famously used the sound of "singing bowls" - an inverted bell where the striker is rubbed against the side to produce a variety of pitches - coupled with mantra chanting for centuries to facilitate meditation and ease pain.

Modern medicine and science are beginning to see the effects of music and sound on healing as well. Swiss Scientist Dr. Hans Jenny coined the term Cymatics, which is the study of the acoustic effects of the wave pattern of sound, which possibly help accelerate the healing of wounds. Dr. Mitchell Gaynor, following the work of Dr. Jenny, taught a combination of conventional medicine, proper diet and meditation with Tibetan singing bowls in his book "The Healing Power of Sound." Dr. Gaynor believed that by relaxing with a mix of chanting, music, and meditation, the immune system benefits from deep breathing and lower hormone levels.

While we are still in the early stages of understanding how this process accelerates healing, dedicated musicians and musical therapists have been utilizing the healing effects of music for everything from stress relief, to helping a variety of mental disorders like depression and schizophrenia with promising results.

In clinical terms, sounds is already a crucial piece of a medical exam. An Ultrasound is just high-frequency sound pulses directed into the body, and by measuring how they bounce off our organs, we can diagnose a variety of liver, kidney, brain, pancreas and neonatal concerns.

Healing Sound in Practice

With the calming frequencies produced by gemstone and mineral infused singing bowls, modern users have the sonic tools needed for transformation and healing. Jeralyn Glass experienced the healing power of sound from singing bowls her life first-hand. She is a professor of music, an international singer and vocal teacher for over 30 years. She has performed across the world, sung on Broadway and can perform in six languages. She always knew music would be my career path, but did not know how it would help her get out of one of the darkest places of her life.

In 2008, she purchased a set of singing bowls and used them to help her family and clients. Then, two and half years ago, she tragically lost her 19-year-old son. During the painful process of grieving, she turned to the bowls for solace. The pure sound they created allowed her to feel, to release and ultimately to breathe again. She has come to learn so much in working with her own grief and ailments of the benefits of healing sound, and now she works to share this healing music with others in need.

Recently, she has been working with cancer patients who informed her they are pain-free for the 75-minute duration of a session. They feel a sense of calm, serenity, and normalcy, if even for a few minutes. So, while healing music might just sound crazy, you might want to keep your mind - and your ears - open to an emerging therapeutic model that could help you and your employees live happier and healthier lives. So turn up your radio in the car, put in your headphones at work, sing in the shower and let the music heal you. You'll feel better!

Register for Jeralyn's upcoming live concert performance right from your computer on December 21. This is your chance to experience the singing bowls first hand.

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