Sound, Medicine of the Future. Now.

A little over 20 years ago I had a client with essential tremors, much like the woman in the video in the attached article. The first time he went on the Soundweaver, with the vibroacoustic therapy and some light hands-on energy work, his tremors completely stopped. I would say that first time it took about ten minutes. After the session his tremors started up again like an old engine slowly starting up and within about 30 seconds they were totally back. But he had experienced relief. He told me it was the most relaxed he had been in 8 years since the tremors started up and that during the session he had no tremors at all. He said that at night when he slept he could feel his organs still shaking but during the session everything stopped.

Afterward he wrote a testimonial: “I fell into a state of meditation. I was in a void with beautiful light-blue light. All of my tremors stopped. It was like I was in a void with no end and no beginning. As soon as I felt like there was something beyond that, I reached for that Unknown and I came out of my state of meditation. as if I wasn’t supposed to go any further. It was a wonderful experience.” CST, 7.30.96

For the next year or so he came to me regularly for sessions. After the first session the entrainment set in much more quickly and it would only take about 3 minutes for his tremors to come to a total stop. They would always start right up again shortly after the music stopped, but he would get a reprieve and a period of deep rest that was very rejuvenating for him. The relief from going into such a deep state of relaxation would stay with him for a few days- which was huge. And then the exhaustion of the tremors would begin to set in again.

Close to a year later he shared another experience in a testimonial: “Most of the time I was in a marble chamber and at the entrance was some kind of a huge sculpting of a snake-like creature on the right. Inside it was calm and peaceful, no other people. Then I went into a place where everything became light. Light blue. It was so peaceful and calm that you feel no weight. When you are in there it is an extension of your life and you do not want to come back. I spent the rest of the time in the blue light. I feel like I am floating. I didn’t even feel the weight of my arms when I came out.” CST, 5.26.97

He didn’t come back much after that. It seemed that it became perhaps too painful emotionally for him to come back to his body after being in such a deeply restful and beautiful space. Not long after this he had surgery for his tremors which wasn’t entirely successful as I recall, but that’s another story and not mine to tell. He was elderly when I was treating him and passed away several years later. Working with him was an incredible gift for me and I know there was a period of time where it was extremely helpful for him. It was also tremendously educational as I was still fairly new to the work- had only been practicing a few years- and opened me to tremendous new possibilities with rhythmic entrainment and vibroacoustic therapy (introducing sound directly to the body through the use of a mat or recliner with speakers built into it).

Tonight I ran across this video about brain surgery with sound- in this case for essential tremors- very exciting!!! Click on this link for the full article.

Vibroacoustically Yours

I just spent an hour on a sound table listening to the album Pagan Saints by Flesh & Bone, a beautiful collaboration between Peter Kater & David Darling. I say listening- which I was, but you must understand that "listening", on a sound table, means not only hearing the music with your ears but experiencing it as a vibrotactile sensation as the music resonates through the whole body. In this moment I am enjoying the resulting quietness of my being. My mind has slowed down. I feel calm and present to my Self.

The experience of vibroacoustic therapy is, in and of itself, both profound and incredibly enjoyable. The vibrations of the music pulsing through the body drop you into a deep state of relaxation very quickly. Different music obviously has very different effects- some music will take you far away and you lose all bodily awareness and sense of time and place very quickly. Other music will be a more kinesthetic experience and you may be very present to the physical sensation of the musical rhythms and vibrations.

Vibroacoustic sound therapy affects the bioenergetic system on all levels. Intention can be a huge factor as well. The sound is delivered to the body not just through the ears but also (and primarily) through skin and bone conduction (tissue conduction). Given that the body is composed of 60-70% water, which is one of the best conductors of sound, there is a powerful somatic response.  I have facilitated and observed hundreds of vibroacoustic sound healing sessions and the first response typically happens within 45- 90 seconds. The body of the person on the table seems to suddenly sink in as they let go and relax effortlessly. Remember, the music is literally massaging every cell in the body so this goes much deeper than physical touch.

Physical touch is a powerful complement to this therapy however. When the first wave of sound hits it can potentially be disconcerting or disorienting especially for someone who has never experienced it before. When the therapist and client together are joined in an intention, the work is that much more powerful and a light touch may be all that is needed to reassure the person on the table that they are in a safe space. There is also a synergistic blend of sound and energy that occurs with hands-on work that enhances and deepens the whole experience.

I have been feeling distracted by technology lately- too much time on the computer and the phone. I find it compelling and somewhat addictive but not always pleasant. Meanwhile I have so many tools at my fingertips that I can use to create more peace in my life and have been asking myself lately why I do not use them more. Today I decided when I got home, before I did anything else, to just lie down on the sound table for a while. What a shift! My mind feels more clear, more focused and on some level less frantic, although I don't think of myself as frantic.

I feel like now I can sit and just enjoy being, instead of doing, doing, doing and chasing after the instant gratification of the technology I have at my fingertips.