Sound Bathing: the latest Friday night craze
As most people in the City on a Friday night are winding down after a hard week at work indulging in a glass of wine or beer at their local pub or enjoying a nice meal at a local restaurant, I have found myself the last 3 weeks in a row doing something very different and out of the ordinary. I have to admit I had no idea or any inclination to get involved or participate in such experiences until my lovely girlfriend said she would like to go to a “sound medicine” event at Tri Yoga on a Friday evening. Being an open-minded yogi banker, I am usually up for doing something different and interesting and of course being in a committed relationship, willing to go along with what my partner is interested in doing too (well, I guess doing a pre-natal yoga class might be a bit of a stretch :)). Little did I know what I was about to experience when I met this “sound therapist” from Bali who described that after having first being introduced to “sound healing”, it changed the course of his life.. and now I know why. I can only say that the experience that I had was truly life changing.
It started with some gentle chanting and mantras in sanskrit… We then lay down as if going into savasana in a typical yoga class. What followed next simply blew my mind away – I felt myself merge deeply into a wonderful field of pure vibration and sound emanating from primitive and native instruments such as drums, rainsticks, gongs, didgeridoos, harps and tibetan bowls etc… all of these instruments resonated this wonderful, soothing and relaxing sound. For more information and to get an idea of what this class looks like, I’ve found this link below of a practitioner in LA.
To me, it has been one of the most powerful experiences I have enjoyed in my life. For the following two weeks on Friday nights we have attended sound baths with different practitioners across London and the effect has been the same. My sleep afterwards has been very deep, and upon waking, I have felt like I have been through some form of wash in the purest sense – my thoughts and feelings, so calm and peaceful. I remember getting up the following morning to go see my reiki guy who I hadn’t seen for a while, and I thought to myself, why I am bothering to go see him, I’ve just been healed!
The interesting thing about ‘sound baths’ is also the theory behind it all. Every organ in the human body has its own vibration – in fact the human body is composed of nothing but pure energy, where the reactions of molecules and chemicals together create who we are. It is believed that the effect of vibration on those molecules creates a healing effect, causing tensions and blocks to dissolve….In my case, last Friday night, I went into the sound bath with a very sore neck caused by stress and posture (and probably too much social media on the smartphone too). I left the sound bath after lying down for an hour on a bolster bathed in a wall of pure sound with no neck pain at all…
It goes further: the first sound therapist we saw explained that some studies had shown that the effect of vibration and sound had caused cancer cells to die. I can only take his word for it and of course these things are subject to challenge, but the deep-seated effects that these experiences have shown me is that the body heals itself when it is relaxed. We do this every night in fact – sleep. We go on holidays to recharge, we rest when we are not well (and that reminded me that all traces of the cold that I had all week disappeared on Saturday morning after my sound bath), and we are constantly told that stress and overwork causes us to be sick e.g. inflammation, cancer, heart disease etc…So if these experiences have had such profound effect upon me, why would the theory not hold? Placebo effect perhaps, but I can only say that both myself and my partner on Saturday were in such a peaceful state (that even my partner struggled to do any work), that something happened on a physiological level….
So make what you want of it and I know that there are critical minds who would dismiss such therapies until the proof is in the pudding, but go and experience it for yourself and see how you feel. Perhaps it will just be another experience and nothing more, but perhaps you may experience something special, where something so simple can cause such profound effects and may just transform how you see the world. Could this be the next big thing to combat executive stress?