Sound Healing Methodology
Based on EEG studies (Jo, 2014, Fischer, 1973, Wigram, 1995, Stelzer, 2018), the conclusion is that brainwave state determines our perceptual parameters of conscious awareness. (Wagner, 1975). See below an overview of the brainwaves and their associated states of consciousness.
Infra-Low (<.5Hz) brain timing and network function
Delta Waves (.5-3Hz) Deepest meditation and dreamless sleep
Theta Waves (3-8Hz) Deep meditation/twilight state
Alpha Waves (8-12Hz) Resting state
Beta Waves (12-28Hz Normal waking state of consciousness
Gamma Waves (38-42Hz) Fast information processing, active during “higher virtues” such as altruism
The use of brainwaves entrainment, discussed in the next section, appears to be the key to the effectiveness of this form of healing instrument. Sound baths often open with gongs and cacophonies of consonant singing bowls (Humphries, 2010), weaving together the harmonic and binaural pulsations to reduce the listeners brainwave frequency from beta to alpha/theta border (Goldsby, 2017, Goldman, 2017).
Tibetan and Himalayan singing bowls, or friction idiophones, can be found dating back thousands of years, with the use of fountain bowls and ringing stones in China, singing bowls in Tibetan and Nepal, and gongs in many regions of Northern and Southern Asia. (Stanhope, 2020, Goldsby, Henrique, 2006, Bush, 2011 ).
Bowls have been found in remote temples in Nepal and Tibet, though their usage as a meditative or healing instrument is not documented. Speculation on practices and techniques along with modern scientific research using EEG and fMRI (Kim, 2018, Naderan, 2021, Humpheys, 2010) has allowed an understanding that these instruments can produce deep healing states of awareness when played skilfully and with intention.“The clinically proven effectiveness of induced states of meditation, such as those associated with Tibetan singing bowls may well have a central place in this emerging practice.” (Humphreys, 2010).