Have you been experimenting with humming and noticing some benefits? It’s a type of subtle energy work that will definitely shift your state of being. Each time you do it, you will experience different things, and you will gradually become more aware of what is happening. So, keep going, even if you don’t feel changes right away.
A Remarkable Story About Bees
In Part 2 we learned about Bhramari Pranayama, which is Sanskrit for “humming bee breath.” And I promised to tell you a remarkable story about humming bees. You may have heard that, for unknown reasons, humming bees have been dying off in increasingly large numbers. The bees die and just tumble from the sky. The colony is left with only the queen and a few nurses, so eventually it just collapses. There are various theories about why this is happening, but no answers.
But there is an interesting story of how one collapsed bee colony was returned to normalcy. A beekeeper, Dr. Valerie Solheim, is also a Jungian psychologist. She has recorded the sounds of bees in their hives. She uses these sounds in her healing sessions with clients. And she also uses the sounds to heal collapsed bee colonies. Entrainment with the healthy humming of bees shifts energy fields to healthy vibrations. Here’s what she says about these remarkable recordings:
"The HealingBees sing the song of Creation. That song is innate to all living organisms. It is the vibratory level of unity. The healthy beehive colony is a super organism; the living unified field. Ancient cultures acknowledged it. All modern religions speak of it. When we listen in meditation, we remember. Listening to any of the HealingBees CDs provides us with a gift on all levels from physical wellbeing to heightened spiritual awareness."
This reminds me of a time I took my crystal singing bowls to visit a friend. As I began to play, a nearby hive of bees began to buzz very loudly. It was not an angry sound. It was as if they were enjoying the bowls and singing along. All of nature appreciates these healing sounds. It was thrilling.
An Advanced Humming Technique
I’ve upped my “humming game” this week, because I’ve been fighting off a flu. I hum as much as I can, and it is working really well, particularly in conjunction with this advanced technique that I’m going to share with you now.
As we discussed in Part 2, intention is an important aspect of humming for health. So how do we encode our intentions into the humming? There are many possibilities, including visualization, positive affirmations, and breath work. What’s important is to try various ways and see what works best for you. Be flexible and creative.
One of the most powerful, widely-known, techniques is humming with an attitude of appreciation and gratitude.
The method is to feel and visualize your intention as if it has already happened, and then give thanks.
The HeartMath Institute has done extensive research on the effect of gratitude. They found that appreciative thoughts amplify the electromagnetic field of our heart, making its field 50 times stronger than our brain’s field. Furthermore, appreciation increases coherence between our heart rate and brain waves. When that happens, there is an amazing array of health benefits. Check out their site for specific instructions.
Other gratitude techniques are discussed by Jonathan and Andi Goldman (The Humming Effect, p. 67–69), who mention the work of Gregg Braden, author of The Isaiah Effect, and Dr. Joe Dispenza, author of You Are the Placebo.
Not sure what to think about while you are humming? Try some of Louise Hay’s best affirmations. Here’s one of my favourites: “I enjoy the foods that are best for my body.” And so it is!
If you missed Parts 1 and 2, you can find them below.
What is Your Personal Fundamental Frequency?
Humming creates a vibration that resonates throughout the body. After a few minutes of humming, every cell entrains (aligns) with that frequency. Each of us has a certain basic frequency that is a combination of the frequencies of all the organs of our body. It’s your personal Fundamental Frequency. When you hum in tune with your Fundamental Frequency it feels comfortable and natural. It gently creates greater ease and joy. Some say it’s the sound of your soul.
To find your Fundamental Frequency, hum when you first wake up in the morning, while you are relaxed, before you start walking and talking. Measure the pitch of that hum (there are apps for that, such as iStrobosoft). Do this for 5 few days in a row. The pitch that comes up most often is your Fundamental Frequency. That’s a good pitch to use for your humming practice. Don’t worry if the pitch varies from time to time. It will change based on your health, time of day, and other factors. So, don’t be too rigid about what note you are using. Just be aware of what is comfortable for you, where you are feeling the tones in your body, and how things shift from day to day. This self-awareness is very valuable. You may want to keep a journal and note your observations.
Frequency + Intent = Healing
To create healing, we need the right frequencies, and the right intent. What is intent? It’s positive thoughts, beliefs, feelings, visualizations and purposes. These are a vital element of successfully using humming (or any sounds) for healing. Intention greatly amplifies the healing effects that were discussed in Part 1 of this article. Words and thoughts each carry vibrations, and sound amplifies them. Be mindful to consciously choose healing thoughts when humming.
Once a woman called me and said someone had given her an energy medicine treatment. Afterwards she had a terrible headache that lasted a week. “What happened?” she asked me. It seems the “healer” had spent the whole time in an agitated state, talking about world crises. He had transferred his despair and “dis-ease” to her. I helped her reverse this condition, with some uplifting, guided meditations.
What's the Scientific Evidence?
You may be familiar with the work of Dr. Masaru Emoto, a Japanese scientist who photographed water with a dark-field microscope.
He wanted to find out what happened to water when it was exposed it to various influences — thoughts, music, prayer, chemical pollution, microwaves, etc. After “treatment” he would freeze the water and observe the effect on the crystals that were formed. Remarkably, water that had negative words spoken to it (“I hate you”) formed very ugly crystals. Water exposed to loving thoughts (“Thank you”) formed beautiful crystals. It didn’t matter what language the words were spoken in. The effect of intention was enough.
Our bodies are 70% water, so imagine the effect we are having when we hum with positive thoughts. We are literally restructuring every cell. View Dr. Emoto’s photos.
Another leading-edge scientist in the field of intention is Dr. Bruce Lipton, who wrote Biology of Belief. He studies the biological effects of belief on the body—what some call the placebo effect. A startling example of how powerful belief can be, is a study in which a group of people who believed they’d had knee surgery, recovered as well as at those who had the actual operation!
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that crystal singing bowls, paired with your voice, boost the humming effect tenfold. They support and amplify your every intention. Marcel Vogel, a high-level IBM scientist who studied the properties of crystals, said, “Crystal emits a vibration which extends and amplifies the power of the user’s mind.”
Now that the cold and flu season has settled in, I thought I’d share a simple tool that everyone can use to boost their immune system and clear nasal congestion. Believe it or not, the simple act of humming can do that and much more. I love that it's free and totally portable!
Humming is a type of toning, which is the practice of making elongated sounds, like OM or AH. Humming is most often done with a “mmmm” sound, or a buzzing sound in the nasal passages (like bees).
The healing effects of humming have been known for centuries. Bhramari Pranayama—Humming Bee Breath—is an example of an ancient yogic technique based on humming. Read instructions and benefits here.
Western science is now confirming the healing effects of humming in peer-reviewed, scientifically validated publications. Some of these are cited in The Humming Effect (2017) by Jonathan and Andi Goldman. Documented benefits include:
It dilates our blood vessels, increases blood flow and lowers blood pressure, greatly reducing stress. Nitric oxide is such an important molecule that it was named “Molecule of the Year” by Science journal in 1992! So, if you are suffering from nasal congestion, consider trying the lowly hum for relief. It costs nothing to try, right?
If you can speak, you can hum!
To get the full effect of humming, you need to use intention and self-awareness while you do it. We’ll explore those aspects in Part 2. Part 3 will explore advanced techniques, and include a remarkable story about bees who heal by humming.
Until next time, here’s a step-by-step humming tutorial.
Want to dive deeper into sound therapy? I'm thrilled to announce that I've got more Sound Therapy Training opportunities in the works for you! Whether you are a beginning or advanced sound practitioner, this is your opportunity to dive much deeper. The next session is coming up April 13–15, 2018. There will also be trainings in July and November. Registration has just opened for all three!
This 3-day training is an extraordinary encounter where you will learn to use your voice, crystal singing bowls and other sound therapy tools for profound wellness — for yourself and others. You’ll be immersed in crystalline sound baths daily and experience first-hand the soul-nourishing and life-changing properties of healing sounds.
This intensive workshop provides hands-on training with over 50 Alchemy™ Crystal singing bowls, as well as transformative experiences, scientific knowledge and skill training. You'll learn proven, safe, professional sound therapy techniques that are evidence-based. My sound therapy method combines sound with voice, self-reflection, mindfulness and self-awareness.
"The best workshop I have ever taken. It was life-changing!" (Johanne Pelletier, Ontario)
Peruse the full course description including the daily schedule, location, tuition costs, and registration details. I'd love to have you join us!
Got questions? Contact me!
Kaasay (Nancy Watters, MA, RCC)
Are you a sound therapy skeptic like I was? From childhood I was always curious. I constantly asked, "How does it work? Why does it work?" (drove Mom nuts!) So, for us curious kids, here it is—the science behind sound therapy.
Biologist Dr. Bruce Lipton, famous author of Biology of Belief, says taking pills is old fashioned compared to newer energy therapies. In this conversation he explains, in plain English, how sound therapy works. He mentions that it helps arthritis, boosts bone health, reduces cancer, decreases stress, and eases pain.
My patients' results over the past 7 years have certainly made me a believer. Can Bruce Lipton make a believer out of you? Click on the button to watch the video on YouTube, and sit back for 40 minutes and lend him your ear. What do you think?
The best evidence, of course, is your own experience. So why not try a grand experiment? Come have a sound therapy session with me. I guarantee it will knock your socks off!
Kaasay (Nancy Watters, MA, RCC)
Looking for a soul-stirring gift? If you've ever considered purchasing Alchemy™ Crystal Singing bowls for yourself or a friend, now's the time! I'm feeling generous and am offering the best prices of the year. From December 1–29 you'll get 10% off all single Alchemy™ bowls and 15% off all Alchemy™ sets in stock here at the Sound Sanctuary.
GIFT CERTIFICATES are available for sound therapy and crystal bowls.
The exquisite Alchemy™ quartz crystal bowls are beautiful, transformative, musical works of art. Their pure, captivating tones rapidly draw you into theta brainwave states and deep peace. Their shimmering sounds help alleviate pain, balance chakras, clear trauma, heal depression and improve concentration. Each bowl is as unique as you are, with pure tones that soothe the soul. The sounds they make create profound shifts and increase inner light, wisdom, love, serenity and joy — qualities the world surely needs in these tumultuous times!
8 transformational, harmonized, one-of-a-kind, sets are here now. Is one calling to you? Watch videos.
Why purchase from me?
There is a quality difference that you can hear and feel. Alchemy™ Crystal Singing Bowls are created in an entirely unique manner, with patented Sound Matrix Technology™ that makes them strong, very pure in tone, and rich with harmonic overtones. As a result of the fusion manufacturing technology, they have a different molecular structure than other crystal singing bowls which may be cut with a lathe. Crystal Tones® bowls are made with only THE HIGHEST GRADE quartz crystal from North Carolina that is guaranteed to be 99.992% pure (lead-free).
Gems, minerals and precious metals are fused with the quartz to create very resonant bowls. Every Alchemy™ bowl is thoroughly inspected to ensure the integrity of the final product. The bowls are then marked with a unique ID number so that you can be assured it's a genuine Alchemy™ Crystal Singing Bowl. We are committed to offering the most innovative tools that are made with loving intention, and to offering our clients the best sound tools available anywhere.
Largest Selection in Western Canada
Right now there are over 50 bowls to choose from. Bowls in stock include Aqua Aura Gold, Violet Indium Sky, Ocean Gold, Pink Aura Gold, Violet Flame Aura, Laughing Buddha, Lemurian Seed, Sage Aura Gold, Selenite, Morganite, Platinum, White Gold, Celestite, Ruby, Tesseract Salt, Anchi, Sugilte, Pink Tourmaline, Abalone, Egyptian Blue, Androgynous Indium, Blue Moonstone, Lemon Angel Gold, Super 7, Sedona Red Rock, and more.
Best Customer Service
I offer a free one-hour consultation to help you make your way through the maze of choices, and find your perfect bowl mates. I'm very in tune with the bowls, and very adept at discerning which bowls are suited to you. I guarantee you'll find your perfect match — bowls that capture your heart, suit your needs, and are within your budget.
Come "try before you buy" at the Sound Sanctuary—Oak Bay. Or purchase via phone, Skype, FaceTime, WhatsApp, Messenger.
"I wanted to thank you again for the lovely experience picking out my very first (and probably not last) crystal bowl set. As soon as I got home I was playing them, and played them with my western red cedar drone flute. Oh my goodness they couldn't be more perfectly matched! It was divine guidance for sure. I'm still stunned. Wow!!" (KM)
Note: Bowls from the Oak Bay Sound Sanctuary will be shipped only to Canada. US and International sales will be shipped from Salt Lake City, Utah.
How Sound Therapy Eases Pain
November 5–11 is National Pain Awareness Week. According to the Canadian Pain Coalition (CPC), one out of five Canadians lives with chronic pain! Sound healing with crystal singing bowls can help ease chronic pain.
The CPC says, "Approximately 20% of Canadians suffer from chronic pain, creating a substantial burden on the individual and their family, health care system, and economy. Chronic pain conditions vary considerably in their etiology but it is generally agreed they all involve a complex combination of biological, psychological, social, and cultural factors. Due to this complexity, pain clinics that offer a wide array of interventions targeting multiple dimensions of pain are considered to be ‘the gold standard’ for treating chronic pain."
How does sound therapy help?
How does sound therapy ease pain? Briefly, sound is a physical vibration that penetrates the body. It's used in ultrasound imaging, for example. Sound travels through the fluid parts of your body 4.5 times faster than it moves through the air and 12 times faster through your bones. People are surprised at how much sensation they feel from the vibrations of crystal singing bowls.
When pure, calming sounds penetrate the body, the nervous system synchronizes to those soothing vibrations and generates less pain. Brain waves, heart rate, and breathing also entrain to the calming frequencies. In this way, sound quickly induces a hypnotic, meditative state. One young woman reported that it was the first time since she was traumatized as a little girl that she had been able to feel fully relaxed and safe.
Knee pain spontaneously vanishes
I have been doing sound healing sessions with crystal singing bowls for seven years, and I see consistent results. For example, BH whose knee pain had been bothering her for years was rid of it in one session. As we began her session, she didn't even tell me was an issue, because she had assumed it would never go away. She is a masseuse and acupressure therapist, and had tried everything.
BH reported, "I 'saw' energy and 'felt' pain being drawn out of my left knee (the knee had recently been 'stiff' and giving me difficulty when going down stairs). The release of pain was simultaneous with a crescendo of bowls and Nancy suddenly bursting into song. At that moment all the etheric energy around me (that had been moving longitudinally along my left side) was suddenly 'pulled' into an arrow shape toward and above Kaasay, thus facilitating the release of pain and blocked chi from my knee."
"Thank you so much for such a beautiful concert in honour of National Pain Awareness Week. Thirty people gathered and were delighted at the strength of the bowls to vibrate their bodies and induce profound sense of relaxation and healing. Many people said it was the first time that they truly calmed in a relaxation exercise." – Linda Cundiff, Occupational Therapy, RJH Pain Program
I offer individual sound therapy sessions and sound therapy training.
Gems and minerals for pain management
(From The Crystal Bible by Judy Hall, 2003)
Alchemy Crystal singing bowls are infused with gems and minerals that each have unique frequencies. This greatly increases their healing power. I sell bowls made with the following gems that are known for helping ease physical and emotional pain. These gems all have many other healing properties, which you can read about in The Crystal Bible.
Blue Calcite is a gentle stone for recuperation and relaxation. It lowers blood pressure and dissolves pain on all levels. Gently soothing the nerves and lifting anxieties, it releases negative emotions. Used on the throat chakra, it aids clear communication, especially where there is dissent. Blue Calcite can absorb energy, filter it, and return it to benefit the sender. (p. 90)
Celestite is an excellent healing stone, dissolving pain and bringing in love. It treats disorder of the eyes and ears, eliminates toxins, and brings cellular order. Its soothing influence relaxes muscle tension and calms mental torment. As with all blue crystals, Celestite is an effective opener and healer of the throat chakra and its associated physical conditions. (p. 97)
Dioptase regulates cell disorders, activates T-cells and the thymus, relieves Meniere’s disease, eases high pressure and alleviates pain and migraines. It prevents heart attacks and heals heart conditions. Dioptase lessens fatigue and overcomes shock. Use as an elixir for headaches and pain. (p. 125)
Sugilite is an exceptionally good pain reliever; the manganese in Sugilite clears headaches and discomfort at all levels. It treats epilepsy and motor disturbances and brings the nerves and brain into alignment. (p. 280)
Tourmaline protects against cell phones, electromagnetic smog, radiation, and negative energies of all kinds. It grounds energy, clears negative thoughts . . . strengthens the immune system, treats dyslexia and arthritis, provides pain relief, and realigns the spinal column. (p. 299)
Turquoise is a most efficient healer, providing solace for the spirit and well being for the body. . . . Turquoise strengthens the meridians of the body and the subtle energy fields. It enhances the physical and psychic immune systems and regenerates tissue, support the assimilation of nutrients, alleviates pollution and viral infections, and heals the whole body, especially the eyes, including cataracts. It reduces excess acidity and benefits gout, rheumatism, and the stomach. This stone is anti-inflammatory and detoxifying and alleviates cramps and pain. (p. 306)
Sound is an energy that can increase joy, create harmony, and lift us up to mystical states. Alternatively, it can drive us to despair or promote anxiety and depression. Musician Carlos Santana once remarked, “We are working in a field of mystical resonance, sound and vibration . . . that's what makes people cry, laugh and feel their hair stand up.”
The world was created by sound, according to stories from Hopi, Egyptian, Christian, Aboriginal, Hindu and Mayan cultures. And ancient civilizations, including Mesopotamia, India, China, Greece and Aboriginal cultures understood that individuals and society are shaped by the kind of music people listen to. In China, for example, when the Emperor wanted to assess the well being of a village, he listened to their music. Music that was unhealthy was banned, because it was known to undermine social cohesion.
A growing body of Western medical research confirms that the right sounds promote healthy functioning of the immune, endocrine, and autonomic systems. Dr. Oliver Sacks, a neurologist and author ofAwakenings writes, “The power of music to integrate and cure is quite fundamental. It is the profoundest non-chemical medication.” One physician says that half an hour of the right music produces the same effects as 10 mg. of Valium! Some of the other benefits of the right sounds include:
But what about harmful sounds, like noise pollution? Dr. Larry Dossey states that noise pollution is probably the most common modern health hazard. Even if you tune out loud sounds, they still penetrate your body. Dr. Dossey explains, “High levels of unpleasant sounds cause blood vessels to constrict; increase the blood pressure, pulse, and respiratory rates; release extra fats into the bloodstream; and cause the blood’s magnesium level to fall.” Hearing is never turned off, even under anaesthesia. Aversive sounds are increasing our stress levels exponentially. So how can we counteract that?
Tip #1: Listen to Music that Makes Your Heart Sing
The Persian poet, Hafiz, referring to our emotional response to music said, “Stay close to any sounds that make you glad you are alive.” Whether a sound is calming or stimulating depends not only on the nature of the sound itself, but also on the relationship you have with that sound. You may have certain memories—good or bad—associated with it. And you won’t react the same way every time you hear it. Your responses will vary from day to day. Respect how sometimes you crave something peaceful; other times something lively or mournful.
Tip #2: Be Mindful of the Lyrics
Choose songs with positive lyrics. Positive thoughts, combined with music, have an almost unequalled ability to instil a sense of life-affirming optimism and harmony. Avoid music with hate lyrics and beats that disrupt natural body rhythms. It’s shocking to know that some musicians deliberately use music to incite violence. For example, “John Phillips of the group The Mamas and the Papas stated, ‘by carefully controlling the sequence of rhythms, any rock group can create audience hysteria consciously and deliberately. ‘We know how to do it,’ he said. ‘Anybody knows how to do it.’ “The band then proceeded to prove it at a concert in Phoenix, Arizona. Using a certain combination of rhythms, they incited a riot.” [Tame, David. (1984) The Secret Power of Music, 154]
In another instance, Mick Jagger of the Rolling Stones performed a song with hate lyrics and specific rhythms that caused audience members to inflict severe injury and death. He commented, “Something like that happens every time we perform that song.” This type of music is an extreme health hazard.
Tip #3: Listen to Mother Nature
Some of the healthiest sounds are made by water—ocean waves or bubbling brooks which calm your nervous system, slow down your heartbeat, lower your blood pressure, slow down your breathing, and put your brainwaves into the calm alpha state. High-pitched bird songs energize the brain, and help you stay mentally relaxed and focused. So get outside or listen to high quality nature recordings.
Tip #4: Steer Clear of Noise Pollution
Protect your hearing. Continued exposure to sounds over 100 decibels can cause gradual deafness. Once your hearing has been damaged, it cannot be regenerated. In many countries, 85 decibels is the maximum noise volume allowed in work environments. Therefore, avoid loud environments or use ear plugs. When listening to music through ear buds, keep the volume low enough so that you can still hear other sounds around you. Here are the noise volumes of some typical situations. If you want to measure the loudness of others, use a decibel meter app. It’s eye-opening!
Here's to your good hearing and health!
Humming creates an immediate healing effect on your whole body. It's one of the fastest, most effective de-stressors you can use. And it’s free and portable! Humming slows down your breathing rate, which automatically slows your heart rate and calms your brain waves. The moment you begin to hum, you are giving yourself a sonic massage, inside and out, and your brain starts releasing those happy endorphins. When you hum while playing crystal bowls, the effect is magnified ten times over.
How does humming work? Sound moves through the fluid parts of your body 4.5 times faster than through the air, and 12 times faster through your bones (which is why ultrasound imaging works.) Humming vibrates every cell, right down to your DNA. It stimulates production of nitric oxide, which helps maintain cellular health. It strengthens your immune system, improves circulation and digestion, clears your mind, and reduces stress. There is no downside!
In one study, exposure to 50–150 Hz provided relief for 80% of those suffering chronic and acute pain. Other studies show that humming improves hearing and reduces nasal congestion. Humming at 25–150 Hz has been known to speed healing of bone, tendons, ligaments and muscles. 25–50 Hz increases bone density. 100 Hz helps decrease dyspnea and shortness of breath.
So I was curious to see if I can hum in those frequencies. I fired up my frequency measurement app (iStroboSoft) and checked out my humming. At my lowest growl, I hit 130 HZ. Hmmmm. Maybe you guys can do this? The fridge fan was at about 40 HZ though, so maybe there is some benefit to those annoying sounds in our homes?
Humming for happiness--It's as easy as 1-2-3
1.Smile, then breathe in and out through your nose, with your lips closed. As you release your breath, keep your lips closed and gently allow a soft hum to float out. Use a tone that is natural for you, one where you easily feel the vibration in your heart center. Hum softly. Louder is not better.
2. Continue for a few minutes, without straining, until you feel the relaxation response—slower breathing, slower heart rate, calmer thoughts.
3. For maximum happiness and health, hum for at least 20 minutes a day.
Do you feel “humming challenged”? Here’s another option. Cuddle with a cat that loves to purr. Research shows that cats purr at healing sound frequencies of 25–150 Hz. They purr when giving birth, when frightened, and when severely injured. Their bones heal more rapidly after fractures than dogs (who don’t purr, of course). So if you don’t want to hum, you can try some “purr therapy”.
Nancy A. Watters, MA, is an expert sound therapist, professional singer, Registered Clinical Counsellor (MA, RCC), psychotherapist and Reiki master. She has a private practice in Oak Bay, British Columbia.
Site copyright 2012--2018 Nancy A. Watters. We never share your personal information with others. The information provided on this site is for educational purposes only and is not intended for the mitigation, cure, or treatment of medical conditions. Luminous Tones and Nancy Watters do not provide medical advice or treatment. The information here is for general information purposes only and does not address individual circumstances or medical conditions. Always consult your physician or medical team for medical advice.