Music in Greek means “art of the muses.” They were the goddesses who embodied and inspired art, literature and knowledge of humanity reiki healing.
Music was never invented or discovered, it was always something innate within us. Therefore, it is not surprising that, for centuries, sound healing has been used to cure ailments.
We listen to music for entertainment and to express ourselves, also in celebrations and ceremonies, for leisure and to communicate. Whether we like music or not, it is something that connects humans from all cultures, faiths and places in the world.
We use music at weddings to celebrate love and at funerals to say goodbye. We listen to it when we are bored and it makes us dance when we want to have fun.
And we also use it to sing praises and worship our gods.
But most importantly, we use music to heal.
In this article we are going to talk to you about the following topics:
The history of sound healing
Sound healing dates back to ancient Greece
Apollo was the god of music and medicine. Asclepius used songs to cure mental disorders. The philosophers Plato and Aristotle said that music influenced the soul and emotions. Hippocrates played music for his patients.
In Ancient Egypt, music therapy was a staple in temples.
In biblical times, instruments were used to expel evil spirits from human souls.
Native American cultures used songs and dances to heal the sick.
The uses of music healing therapy are endless.
After a few centuries, in 1940 the United States Army incorporated music into its recovery programs for military personnel during World War II . This moment is known as the official beginning of music therapy.
Today, it is used in all aspects of medicine and spiritual development. And, although it is still considered an alternative to modern medicine, evidence suggests that it is effective—and necessary—for our emotional and psychological health.
However, it remains undervalued.
Some people think that those who use music therapy are crazy people looking for magical solutions to medical problems. However, music therapy or sound healing has its bases in neurology and psychology.
What is sound healing?
Sound healing is the process by which a professional uses music—in addition to other emotional, psychological, spiritual, physical, social, mental, and superficial tools—to improve the health of his or her patient.
Music sound therapy helps improve many aspects of a patient’s life, including emotional and social development, cognitive and motor functioning, and psychological and psychiatric health.
Sound healing is done in several ways. Patients may listen to music or sing, improvise musical acts, meditate, or play musical instruments. Some professionals have their patients listen to sounds created specifically to induce positive brain waves.
Can sound waves heal?
Almost everything we experience in the universe is through our perception of waves.
When sound waves reach our ears, they are converted into electrical signals that travel along the auditory nerve to the auditory cortex , which is the part of the brain that processes sound. Once sound waves reach our brains, they trigger responses in our bodies.
This process alters our emotions, releases hormones and triggers certain impulses.
Although studies on how music influences our brains are scarce, there is no evidence that the brains of musicians are different from those of non-musicians.
But, some studies have shown that the brains of musicians are more symmetrical and that the areas of the brain responsible for motor and cognitive functioning, coordination and reasoning are much larger. And thanks to a larger corpus callosum, communication between the cerebral hemispheres is better.
Neurological studies have shown that listening to music makes us more productive and creative, also reduces stress and improves our mood.
And this is because listening to music floods our brain with dopamine and releases oxytocin—a natural pain reliever—in addition to being the hormone that allows us to create bonds with other people. In fact, oxytocin is common during childbirth.
Music also helps language development and improve communication.
It has even been seen to increase IQ, so we can say that music makes us more intelligent. It also improves our memory and protects the brain from diseases such as Alzheimer’s.
Music is powerful . It can change our brains and also our bodies.
What are the benefits of sound healing?
When we listen to happy music or deep or melancholic songs, our emotions light up and we can process them better. The difference is that we only listen to sad songs when we feel bad, because (here’s the trick) we know they make us feel better.
In a 2006 study by The Journal of Advanced Nursing, it was found that those who listen to music feel less pain and experience less anxiety than those who do not .
Since sound has different frequencies and since we also emit our own waves, sound healing involves matching frequencies that promote healing and relaxation.
A study from the 1970s proposed that when you hear different tones in each ear, the two hemispheres of the brain connect and create a third (internal) tone called a binaural tone.
Binaural tones synchronize the brain and provide clarity, focus and greater concentration. This is strong evidence that our brains and bodies respond to sound both cognitively and physically.
Let’s say you have a headache. There is a sound that, when heard, can cancel out the brain waves of pain.
Or let’s say you’re in a bad mood because you didn’t sleep well. Listening to a relaxing song will cheer you up and help you forget that you are upset.
Sounds and songs help us remember, and this can be used to help traumatized or depressed patients.
There are various methods, instruments and techniques that can be used in sound therapy, but at its base is the premise of training.
Effects of sound healing
Entrainment is a method that allows brain waves to be synchronized by generating a fixed and stable frequency to which our brains adjust until they coincide with it.
Binaural sounds for healing can reduce the effects or heal conditions such as:
- Learning difficulties
- Anxiety disorder
It can also produce:
- Clarity and balance
- Better memory and concentration
- Sleep improvement
- A stronger immune system
- Greater creativity
- Greater awareness, both of self and environment