There are many definitions for sound. Wikipedia defines sound scientifically as “a mechanical wave that is an oscillation of pressure transmitted through some medium (like air or water), composed of frequencies which are within the range of hearing,” and in Greek mythology “Ekho (Greek: Ἠχώ, Ēkhō, “echo” from ἦχος (ēchos), “sound”) was an Oread (a mountain nymph) who loved her own voice. Zeus loved consorting with beautiful nymphs and visited them on Earth often. Eventually, Zeus’s wife, Hera, became suspicious, and came from Mt. Olympus in an attempt to catch Zeus with the nymphs.”
Music is sound, but sound is not always music. One could say that music is organized and/or intentional sound.
The use of sound and particularly sound healing, has roots that go back tens of thousands of years and it still has a significant role in every culture in our planet. Every religion uses sound and voice as a significant part of its ceremonies, but sound itself is still universal. The early chants of Tibetan Bon tradition are still sung today, as well as Sanskrit chants in India, Icaros healing songs in Peru and Joiks by the Sami people in Lapland. Many westerners have adapted these old traditions and sound healing methods as well, mixing and expanding both the cultural and healing aspects of these sounds.
We use sound in a variety of ways. In most religious or spiritual settings, sound is used for evoking, honoring or connecting with the spirits. We listen to or perform sounds to express variety of emotions from sadness to joy, anger to calm. We also energize ourselves or others with sound. We sing to babies or at the bedside of elders in the hospice. Even astronomers use sound waves to ignite solar ring of fire in space. We use ultrasound in a variety of ways in the hospitals. If you spend time in anechoic chamber (room without echo), you can hear your nervous system and the liquids moving in your body. There simply is no place to hide from sound.
March 2019 – Living in a time of increased anger and fear
January 2019 – How to make decisions based on my values
June 2018 – Empowering practice of giving and receiving
May 2018 – The powerful practice of Inner Joy
March 2018 – Article in the Oakland Magazine
January 2018 – Setting an intention to contemplate on through out the year.
December 2017 – Reflection and integration rising from the body
November 2017 – Self empowerment in the time of need
October 2017 – Time for change – are you ready?
July 2017 – Is wellbeing a luxury or necessity?
June 2017 – The subtleties on being in the moment
May 2017 – Are your thoughts real?
April 2017 – Teaching your body to relax
Julian Treasure: The 4 ways sound affects us
Evelyn Glennie: How to truly listen
Yoav Medan: Ultrasound surgery – healing without cuts
Anthony Holland: Scattering cancer with resonant frequencies
David Perez-Martinez: Use of sound in psycho therapy practice
TedEd: How stress affects our brain
Richard Reed Parry: Music for heart and breath
Peter Gabriel: Life lessons from a rock star
Richard Davidson: Wellbeing is a skill
Science Nature: What Music does to your brain
Meditation is nothing new. It has been practiced all over the world in different formats for thousands of years. In the recent years, there has also been more and more scientific studies conducted concentrating on the health benefits.
Reduces Blood Pressure and stress
Researchers say, that high-risk patients who meditated cut their risk of heart attacks and strokes roughly by half compared with a group of similar patients who were given more conventional education. Other benefits of meditation follow from stress reduction, which could cause changes in the brain that cut stress hormones like cortisol and dampen the inflammatory processes associated with atherosclerosis. (Study by Dr Schneider 2009, Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee, New York Times November 20, 2009) (link).
Stress release, memory and learning
Researchers reported that those who meditated for about 30 minutes a day for 8 weeks had measurable changes in gray-matter density in part of the brain associated with memory, sense of self, empathy and stress. (Study by Britta Hölzel, a psychologist at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Jan. 30, 2011 issue of Psychiatry Research: Neuroimaging) (link).
Researchers have found neuroscience evidence that the ability to release thoughts that pop into mind frees the brain to attend to more rapidly changing things and events in the world at large. (Study by Richard Davidson, a professor of psychology and psychiatry at the University of Wisconsin) (link).
Sound therapy induces relaxation
The use of music as a means of inducing positive emotions and subsequent relaxation has been studied extensively by researchers. A great deal of this research has centered on the use of music as a means of reducing feelings of anxiety and stress as well as aiding in the relief of numerous pathologies. (Study by Elliot Salamon, Minsun Kim, John Beaulieu and George B. Stefano at Neuroscience Research Institute, State University of New York)
Music gives us an oxytocin boost
Oxytocin is a neuropeptide affiliated with breast-feeding and sexual contact, and is known to play an important role in increasing bonding and trust between people. Now researchers are discovering that music may affect oxytocin levels in the body.
In one experiment involving a breed of “singing” mice, mice that had their oxytocin receptor sites artificially knocked out by researchers engaged in fewer vocalizations and showed marked social deficits when compared to normal mice, suggesting a link between singing, oxytocin, and socialization. In a study with humans, singing for 30 minutes was shown to significantly raise oxytocin levels in both amateur and professional singers, regardless of how happy or unhappy the experience made them. Perhaps this explains why new mothers often sing lullabies to their newborn babies: it may help encourage bonding through oxytocin release.
Researchers have also found that listening to music releases oxytocin. In one study, patients undergoing coronary bypass surgery were asked to listen to experimenter-selected ‘soothing’ music for 30 minutes one day after surgery. When tested later, those who’d listened to music had higher levels of serum oxytocin compared to those who were assigned to bed-rest alone. Though the study was more focused on the relaxation properties of music than on oxytocin specifically, it still suggests that music directly impacts oxytocin levels, which, in turn, affect our ability to trust and act generously toward others—factors that increase our social connection.
Music strengthens our ”theory of mind” and empathy
In one study (2009), Koelsch and a colleague hooked up participants to an fMRI machine and had them listen to a piece of music that they were told was either composed by a human or by a computer (even though it was actually the same piece of music). When participants listened to music they believed was composed by a human, their “theory of mind” cortical network lit up, while it didn’t under the computer condition. This suggests that our brain doesn’t just process sound when we hear music, but instead tries to understand the intent of the musician and what’s being communicated.
In a more recent study (2013), a group of primary-school-aged children were exposed to musical games with other children for one hour a week over the course of an academic year, while two control groups of same-aged children received either no games or games with the same purpose, but involving drama or storytelling instead of music. All of the children were given various empathy measures at the beginning and end of the year; but only the music group significantly increased their empathy scores, suggesting that music may have played a pivotal role in their empathy development.
Personal identification information
We may collect personal identification information from Users in a variety of ways, including, but not limited to, when Users visit our site, place an order, subscribe to the newsletter, fill out a form, and in connection with other activities, services, features or resources we make available on our Site. Users may be asked for, as appropriate, name and email address. Users may, however, visit our Site anonymously. We will collect personal identification information from Users only if they voluntarily submit such information to us. Users can always refuse to supply personally identification information, except that it may prevent them from engaging in certain Site related activities.
Non-personal identification information
We may collect non-personal identification information about Users whenever they interact with our Site. Non-personal identification information may include the browser name, the type of computer and technical information about Users means of connection to our Site, such as the operating system and the Internet service providers utilized and other similar information.
Web browser cookies
How we use collected information
Harmoniaalto may collect and use Users personal information for the following purposes:
- To personalize user experience - We may use information in the aggregate to understand how our Users as a group use the services and resources provided on our Site.
- To process appointments - We may use the information Users provide about themselves when booking a session only to provide service to that order. We do not share this information with outside parties except to the extent necessary to provide the service.
- To send periodic emails - We may use the email address to send User information and updates pertaining to their order. It may also be used to respond to their inquiries, questions, and/or other requests. If User decides to opt-in to our mailing list, they will receive emails that may include company news, updates, related service information, etc. If at any time the User would like to unsubscribe from receiving future emails, they may do so by contacting us via our Site.
How we protect your information
We adopt appropriate data collection, storage and processing practices and security measures to protect against unauthorized access, alteration, disclosure or destruction of your personal information, username, password, transaction information and data stored on our Site.
Sharing your personal information
We do not sell, trade, or rent Users personal identification information to others. We may share generic aggregated demographic information not linked to any personal identification information regarding visitors and users with our business partners, trusted affiliates and advertisers for the purposes outlined above.
Your acceptance of these terms
By using this Site, you signify your acceptance of this policy. If you do not agree to this policy, please do not use our Site. Your continued use of the Site following the posting of changes to this policy will be deemed your acceptance of those changes.
This document was last updated on November 12, 2013×