What happens when you think of a song. Well, let me tell you about me. Music gives me satisfaction to a level that is immeasurable.
It is fun, it is like a game,
With music there is so much to gain,
Music is life, Music is love,
It is a feeling, it is emotion,
Music is the Universal language of expression.
With that little amateur limerick, let me explain( very briefly), a little about sound.
We relate to music in every aspect of life. Have you noticed how you vibe to songs with different feelings? If you are hearing a sad song, it makes you feel a little sombre and if you are low and you hear a pumped up song, it changes your mood, isn’t it? That is the POWER of MUSIC.
As a Music therapist, let me tell you- What is Music and how it helps?
Music is a collection of sounds. When these sounds are arranged in a certain way, it becomes music. In this article, I will explain what are sounds and how they impact us at a physical, mental, psychological and spiritual level- i.e. At the level of mind, body and spirit.
Sound – Anything that we hear is a sound. However, there are some sounds that the human ear cannot hear. Sound is a form of energy produced by vibrations caused by movement of particles. Sound is everywhere and forms an integral part of our lives.
Sound exists in the universe from times even before any creation.
Nada Brahman is the supreme origin and cause of all sounds. This is the supreme state and all forms of sounds emanate from this state.
Nada is formed from two words-
Na- which means breath or prana or vayu &
Da- which means Fire or energy.
Brahman means the ultimate reality, it is formless but is the birthplace of all forms in visible reality.
From the Nada Brahman comes the Nada Bindu– the subtlest manifestation , tremors which float around in bliss. This is not audible to the ordinary ear, but can be heard by yogic practice.
From here are produced the Anahata Nada, Ahata Nada, Madhura Nada and Pratyahata Nada.
Whether we like it or not, the vibrations of these sounds reach us, not only through the hearing sense, but also by coming into contact with the physical body. Some sounds affect us positively while some negatively.
The sounds we hear are characterized by sound vibrations, spread out as sound waves and exist due to vibrations. Sound Vibrations are measured in terms of Frequency.
The frequencies at which an object tends to vibrate when hit, struck, plucked, strummed or disturbed is known as the natural frequency of the object. If the amplitudes of the vibrations are large enough and if natural frequency is within the human frequency range, then the vibrating object will produce sound waves that are audible.
Just as the universe or cosmos has vibrations and energy, all human have vibrations and energies. Every living entity is made up of a set of patterns of vibrations.
Research and experimental studies on consciousness, emotions and feelings have shown that even though we are represented externally by the physical body, internally deep within us we are primarily made up of energies and patterns of vibration. This may also be understood from the perspective that the physical body consists of millions of cells of different kinds, which are in turn composed of molecules, atoms, sub-atomic particles such as quarks and even smaller particles, and finally in the form of patterns of energy that vibrate like strings Source – (Greene, B., 2005)
As sound is made of mechanical vibrations and is close to the physical, it can be stated that sound vibrations affect us. Musical sounds or notes are very closely related to emotions and feelings. Each pattern or set of notes corresponds to a particular set of emotions, positive or negative. Many experiments and researches have been conducted to validate the same.
Sound plays an important role for our bodies and cells in the body. If you hear sounds that are loud or at a frequency which is not matching the bodies frequencies, it is unpleasant and becomes noise for us.
We all know that the universe has patterns. There is a spirit consciousness floating around with no physical body. This spirit expands its consciousness all around itself without moving. It creates a sphere around itself. This is the first circle created. It has an awareness of what is around itself in 360 degrees. Then the spirit-consciousness moves to the very edge of the sphere and again expands itself the same extent as before and creates another sphere, repeats what it did the first time and creates another sphere, and another and another. This is called Sacred Geometry. These patterns keep changing with the vibrations and awareness.
The cells of our body also have these patterns and all cells and our body can be positively affected by sound vibration.
The human body has key energy centres called chakras. Chakras correspond to specific glands, organs, and facets of your being. Energy flows through the chakra system in two ways. First, it flows up and down along the central channel, connecting the chakras. Second, it flows horizontally, in an exchange of energy with the cosmos. Sound and Music have healing characteristics which can be used in the balancing of the chakras and regulating the flow of energy in the system. In various experiments conducted, clear geometric patterns were observed when the vibrations were harmonious and pleasant.
The use of the basic seven notes of music has shown remarkable results in healing the mind and body.
Each note has a frequency at which it vibrates. when a combination of notes is brought together and played or sung, it has greater and specific healing abilities.
In Indian Classical music, the usage of Ragas has shown fantastic results.
Raga – Set of musical notes. Ranja Yate Iti Ragah – which means a Raga dyes the mind in colour, colour of thought, emotions and feelings.
Without getting into the detail of ragas, I would like to further say that, a combination of notes with the vadi swara (the most important note of the raga) in mind, a raga can have a unique effect on the mind and thereby the body. Various diseases from small headaches to cancer can be healed through the raga system.
Yes, that is the power of sound and music.
Where some therapies find it restraining to deal with issues like parkinsons, schizophrenia, alzhiemers, etc, music therapy has shown remarkable positive results.
The vibrations of music–
- when sung, act as auditory stimulus to the brain and activates the nerve centres.
- when heard, resonate in sync with the alpha waves of the brain and stimulates the nervous system improving the nervous system.
Classical music stimulates the main action centre of the brain, the pituitary gland whose secretions have impact on the nervous system. The vibrations from instrumental music vibrate the body cells and thus improves blood circulation and bone health. Singing or listening to classical music for a prolonged time relaxes and refreshes the mind and body, reducing negative emotions.
Each raga has a different therapeutic value in different diseases. The combination of notes, the instruments used and the time of the raga, all put together heal the mind, body and soul.
As a trained musician, it always brings a lot of gratitude in my heart that I am blessed to be in a space where I can use this knowledge for myself and extend this service to help others to evolve and emerge healthy and happy.
HAPPILY conclude by stating – I sing all the time.