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Sound Healing: Tibetan Singing Bowls

Sound healing techniques have been popular throughout history in many different cultures. These days, Himalayan singing bowls are gaining popularity in sound therapy. The bowls contain seven to twelve different metals, known as “bell metal”. Depending on type, they may also incorporate silver, gold, mercury, tin, lead, copper and iron.

Sound Healing: Relaxation and Resonance

Each bowls resonates with a slightly different musical tone and frequency. And if we strike the bowl in different places that can change from high to low. Therapists use different techniques to produce reverberation, relying on the airwaves of the surrounding to carry the sound.

Harmonic sounds can soothe and relax when we are not able to focus on words and meaning. We often hear that sound and touch are the last senses to falter, so even if we think a person may not be conscious, we can use sound healing to create calm and ease.

Sound Healing: Perception

Scientists in the field of physco-acoustics (studying the perception of sound in the brain) have examined how different brain waves operate at different frequencies. They theorize that the sound may help retune disturbed internal  frequencies. According to therapists, the sound waves interact with inner elements in the physical body and may aid in reducing physical, mental and emotional imbalances.

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Suggested Reading

Dudjom Rinpoche, The Nyingma School of Tibetan Buddhism, trans. and ed. by Gyurme Dorje and Matthew Kapstein (Boston: Wisdom Publications, 1991), vol. 1, pages 468–474.

Ngawang Zangpo, Guru Rinpoche: His Life and Times, Ithaca: Snow Lion, 2002.

Nyoshul Khenpo, A Marvelous Garland of Rare Gems: Biographies of Masters of Awareness in the Dzogchen Lineage, trans. Richard Barron (Junction City: Padma Publishing, 2005), pages 41–48.

Padmasambhava, Legend of the Great Stupa, Berkeley: Dharma Publishing, 1973

Padmasambhava & Jamgön Kongtrul, The Light of Wisdom, trans. by Erik Pema Kunsang (Boudhanath: Rangjung Yeshe Publications, 1986-1999), pages 43-47 & Appendix 5.

Taranatha, The Life of Padmasambhava, Shang Shung Edizioni, 2005

Tulku Thondup, Masters of Meditation and Miracles, Shambhala, 1996.

Yeshe Tsogyal, Life and Liberation of Padmasambhava, translated by Kenneth Douglas and Gwendolyn Bays (Emeryville: Dharma Publishing, 1978, republished 2008).

Yeshe Tsogyal, Lotus Born: The Life Story of Padmasambhava, Rangjung Yeshe Publications, 2004.

‘The Life of Guru Padmasambhava’ in A Great Treasure of Blessings, The Tertön Sogyal Trust, 2004.