Toning, Self- Generated Sound 5.6.11

Just wrote this article for a workshop I am teaching (actually a rewrite of an old one). Seems like good blog material. After all, toning is self-generated wholistic sound. Sound for the WHOLE BEING- sound to RESTORE US TO WHOLENESS- Original Perfection (as opposed to the paradigm of Original S-word!)

Self-Generated Sound for Self Healing
~Rosie Warburton, Sound Therapist~

What Is Toning?
Uhhhhh... Good question- what is “toning”? Toning is the simple practice of holding a single sustained vowel sound in order to experience the effects of the sound vibration on various parts of the body. It can also have a powerful effect on the mental and emotional bodies. With consistent practice toning can be developed into a highly effective procedure for aligning and balancing one's own energy field. It may also be used by body/energy workers as a diagnostic and therapeutic healing tool as well as being a very effective tool for meditation.

Toning the Chakras
Uuuuu (pronounce like “oo” in “moon”)... There is a vowel sound and corresponding frequency for each of the 7 primary subtle energy centers in the body (known as “chakras” in Indian philosophy). There are a number of different systems by which one can determine the appropriate pitch. By doing toning as a meditative practice you will be able to quickly and effectively clear, align and balance your chakras. A one, two or three octave system may be used depending on one's vocal range and personal preference. One or two octave systems are more commonly used as many people do not have a range of three octaves or more. You will find, however, that with a little practice your range will noticeably expand- even toning as little as 10-20 minutes a day over a period of 2-3 weeks.

Benefits of Toning
Ooooh (Pronounce like “o” in “so” or “OM”)... There are many benefits to toning. Intuitively we sing or hum to an infant to calm them down when they are upset. The sound of our voice is as powerful a healer as touch. In our culture we have gotten so far removed from it though, that we are unaware often even when we are naturally using it as a healing tool. By humming a single tone, a feeling of warmth and well-being spreads quickly throughout our body. Deep emotional release can also occur simply by allowing ourselves to “sound”, letting go of any judgment- or even experiencing the judgment and sounding right through it as we observe our emotional reaction to it from that place of witness consciousness. As it has been said, “Feel the fear and do it anyway.” As we tone through our most uncomfortable feelings, those feelings often will begin to transform and sometimes far more quickly than we might think possible!

Trusting Your Voice
Aaaaah! One of the great joys of toning is that there is no wrong way to do it! And for many of us who have been told we “couldn't sing” or we had a “bad voice”, or felt in any other way oppressed in our vocal expression, there is an incredible freedom in allowing pure sound to pour out of our body. Your voice is your gift- no one else has one just like it- it is the perfect expression and blueprint of the uniqueness of you. Let it out. The world is waiting!

How It Works
Aaaay (like “may”)... Hans Jenny, the father of cymatics, the study of wave phenomena, showed us that sound creates, changes and rearranges matter. Physiologically when we tone into a specific area of the body we are literally realigning the molecules of the body. We know that a sustained high-pitched frequency has the power to shatter a wine glass, just as a sustained low frequency can conceivably cause windows to break or walls to crumble. This idea can be applied to help us understand how toning works on the physical and subtle bodies to actually break up physical, mental and emotional blockages.

The Healing Practice
Aiiiii (like “eye”)... When working with another person, the practitioner scans the client's body using modulating vocal tones and sometimes his or her hands (usually off the body) listening for “feedback”. This may come as a change in tone, an overtone or harmonic bouncing back, or a feeling of warmth, coolness, tingling, or lack of vitality. The practitioner then tones directly into the area calling for attention breaking up the energy blockages or crystallized patterns with sound waves directed into that area. One may tone very close to the body or into the energy field around the body, depending on the level of healing that seems to be needed. The goal is to bring coherence back to a chaotic energy field, essentially retuning the system and restoring the natural state of harmony and homeostasis.

The Gift
Eeeeee... Toning literally vibrates our being on every level and thus can be used as a tool for physical healing, emotional well-being and spiritual transformation. Physically it can loosen trauma in the body, relieving physical pain and accelerating the healing process. Mentally it can help us within a few short moments to become clearer, more alert and more focused. Emotionally it can be calming, cathartic, empowering or joyful; it can assist us in releasing anger, fear or grief. And all of this supports our spiritual evolution. Toning is a simple tool. It is safe and it is built-in! No one knows what your body needs better than you. Trust your body- your instincts, your intuition and your inner wisdom- to tell you what sound it needs and then allow yourself to open up and LET IT OUT. Explore. Be creative, be unafraid and enjoy!

And then stop, breathe, feel and listen to what your body is saying now. It's probably saying “Thank you!”

Note- This article has been broken down into seven sections. The tone at the beginning of each paragraph corresponds to the tones for the chakra system, in order, from the root to the crown.
  • Root Chakra – Survival, connection to tribe- Sound: Uhhhh (like “rug”)
  • Naval Chakra- Emotions, creativity, sexuality- Sound: Uuuuu (like “moon”)
  • Solar Plexus Chakra- Power center Sound: Ooooh (like “so”)
  • Heart Chakra- Unconditional love Sound: Aaaaah (like “father)
  • Throat Chakra- Speaking one's truth, creative expression Sound: Aaaay (like “may”)
  • Third Eye (Brow point)- Inner Wisdom, psychic abilities Sound: Aiiiii (like “eye”)
  • Crown (top of head)- Connection to Source Sound: Eeeee (like “thee”)
If, after reading this, you are still afraid of making the wrong sound- remember this “Frequency plus intention creates healing/transformation.” (Jonathan Goldman) ;-o