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The Magic of Sound Bowl Healing

Link to the Episode

Anshu Bahanda: This is Anshu Bahanda on Wellness Curated. Thanks for joining me on this podcast. My mission is to empower you with health and wellness so that you can then go and empower others. So, we have with us Dheeshana Ameresekere and she runs a hotel called Theva Residency in Sri Lanka. She is a Hatha yoga instructor and she specialises and focuses on sound bowl healing and therapy, which is what we’re going to talk about today. So Deeshana, welcome again. What is wellness to you?

Dheeshana Ameresekere: When it comes to wellness, I think everyone has a perception of wellness and healing. And for me, on my journey with all the experiences that I have gone through, wellness doesn’t only relate to your body because we tend to focus a lot on the body part of it. But it’s very important that for me, wellness equals soul plus mind plus body— when all three of them are in balance. That’s what wellness is. So that’s your spiritual, your mental and your physical aspect of you. Because we always tend to say body-mind-soul, body-mind- soul. But it’s soul-mind-body. And because we have forgotten that we are spiritual beings and our soul wellness is, we have to place a lot of importance on that rather than our physical aspect. 

Higher growth is in our spiritual growth. And we should work from our spirit to our body rather than our body to our spirit. Because your spirit or your soul is the only aspect of you that does not die. How well you take your last breath will depend on how well you have lived. The second thing is we are made up of doshas. You look at the Ayurvedic practice, you know the doshas are based on your physical, emotional, mental, and behavioural characteristics. And three doshas are vatapitakapha and they are formed taking into consideration the elements— the air, the space, earth, fire and water. And based on what dosha you are, there are practices for your mind, for your soul and your body on this wellness journey. So, it’s very important to know what you are so that you can align yourself with that balance with nature.

And the third point I would say is when it comes to wellness, your soul, mind, body balance, each person has a different equation to achieve that balance. And that depends. For me, I believe that it depends on your vasanas or your innate nature that you have come with. So, when it comes to soul balance… With your wellness and your soul balance, I would say your spiritual practice, faith in a higher power, prayer practice, seva— service to others, practising forgiveness, love, compassion, gratitude, these are very important. And for your mental balance, I would say to rewire your brain with positive things, what you watch, what you read, people you surround yourself with, must add value to your life. For me, I would say Buddha’s noble eightfold path is the best that you can go by the right understanding, right thought, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness. 

So, your body is the temple of God or spirit. So, what you eat, drink is very important. You [must] have a sattvic diet, a vegetarian diet, don’t eat chemical-based food or fast food because those are not good for you. And physical activity is a must. And also remember that to keep your body clean, they say cleanliness is next to Godliness. So, it’s very important that you look after your physical body as well. So, when you practise all this and you balance that, you will be on a beautiful wellness path. And finally, I just want to say, as human beings, we tend to think we are superior to all other living beings and we live very interdependently from nature and that’s not right. And with this global pandemic that’s happening and so many sicknesses that have taken place, we can see that this is the reason.

So, the wellness of Mother Earth and all other beings perfectly work in harmony and that’s because they work interdependently and there’s a birth, there’s a life, there’s a death, which happens beautifully and timely with no interference and acceptance of letting go. And that is the beauty. And the problem with us is we separate ourselves and come up with our own rules and regulations of nature and wellness. And this leads to illness, because wellness versus illness. So, wellness, you get the word ‘we’ at the beginning, which means one’s consciousness with respect and love to all nature and being. And illness starts with ‘I’, which is very self-centred, ego-based thinking with your own laws, which are against the law of nature. So, remember, our wellness depends on Mother Nature and Mother Nature’s wellness depends on our wellness.

AB: Thank you. And you know, that’s the most comprehensive answer I’ve had about wellness. So, thank you for that. Tell me now, what is sound healing and how does it work? We hear so much about sound healing people and it’s incorporated into a lot of our lives, whether it’s bells, whether it’s bowls, whether it’s even singing or mantras. But tell us more about sound healing.

DA: So, sound healing, it works with the frequency and it’s also an ancient meditative practice that uses musical tools to create healing vibrations around the body. And I believe that it touches you on a very cellular level and it kind of fine tunes your vibration or your personal frequency. And that is why sound is so important. So let me give an example. When you are trying to tune in a radio station, you hear a lot of static, right?

We also have a station. You have a station. I have a station. And we have to continuously try to find that station. And there is a lot of static. While we find that perfect place where you can hear your beautiful song, that is your frequency. So, then that static noise is all the unnecessary noise in your life that’s disturbing you that you collect every day. And because of that, you can’t find this perfect frequency. So, I think the journey will end, because it’s not a place, you’re not going to find it tomorrow. The journey until your last breath is a work in progress to come as close as you can to that frequency. So, that’s what sound does. Your personal frequency should be aligned with the universal frequency because everything moves. Everything moves to a rhythm. The earth moves to a rhythm. Your heart beats to a rhythm. So, sound can take the human spirit to different states of consciousness. Think of music and the impact it has on our lives. When we listen to a slow song, when we listen to a fast song, the sound of someone speaking, if they’re speaking to you in a loud voice, or angry voice, or a loving voice. And the sound of prayer. How powerful is that?

And so, what is great about sound healing is it touches on your soul, mind and body. Because we must remember that we are an energetic body with a physical suit. This body is just like a coat that we put on. And this coat, one day we have to discard. But what matters is the energy that you are left inside and which is your soul energy. So, everybody’s talking about sound and healing now. I mean, Nikola Tesla said if you want to find the secrets of the universe, think in terms of energy, frequency, and vibration. So, I think that’s very important.

AB: Lovely. I love your explanation about the radio station because that makes it so clear how sound healing works. And tell me what sound bowl healing is and will you tell us a little bit about your experiences with it?

DA: Yes. So sound therapy, sound bowl healing— the Tibetan Singing Bowl is an ancient form of healing. The first bowls were made with various metals and were used already like 6000 years ago. And the singing bowls help with deep relaxation of both sides of your brain and it stimulates stress relief and also have been said to eliminate toxins from your body. Also, it is very calming and it’s used for a lot of emotional therapy as well. So, when you play the bowl, it actually kind of has a sound, like you can hear an ‘om’ kind of thing, which is considered the basic DNA code. So, you can hear it when I play. Singing bowls are one of the strongest musical instruments for healing they have found for therapy and vibration. And they use about five to seven precious metals and each metal is connected to our galaxy. So, this is very interesting. So, lead is for Saturn, tin is for Jupiter, iron is for Mars, copper is for Venus, mercury is for Mercury, silver is for the moon, and gold is for the sun.

AB: Wonderful. And tell me, there’s so much talk about sound therapy now and sound bowl therapy and singing bowls. So, from your experience, what sort of diseases or ailments or disorders have you seen that have been helped by this kind of therapy?

DA: Okay, so as I said, sound touches us on all human levels, the spiritual, mental, and physical. I think Einstein had said the future of medicine will be on frequency. The spiritual effect: I would say I’m going on this because I always say these three have to be balanced, otherwise, you can’t find balance. So, the spiritual aspect of it is it gives you a positive feeling of yourself and you experience some kind of bliss. There is harmony in your life. It cleans your chakras and your energy centres. And a higher frequency helps you to boost your energy and your vibration level. And basically, you vibrate higher with the greatest frequency of all time, which is love. And on a mental level, it helps to reduce your tension, deep relaxation and pain relief for joint muscle, headache, digestive systems, and spine injuries. You can play the bowl on the injured place and you can feel some kind of release because it improves blood circulation and it also synchronises your molecules, your cells, tissues and organs to function. There’s a better energy flow. Like I said, it eliminates toxins from your body and also your immune system. So perfect for these times.

AB: Right. Now, how long do you think it typically takes? How long do you need to work with sound therapy before you can notice a difference in yourself, in your mental, physical and emotional body and your spiritual body?

DA: Anshu, I can’t tell you how important this is. Be patient, okay? Everybody wants to try something new and they expect something to happen. You’re trying to get rid of years of conditioning. Healing takes time. Undoing your old patterns is not something you can do overnight because with any habit, it takes almost 66 days for a habit to be formed. So be kind to yourself. Healing without asking and being impatient to get results, because that journey to getting the balance is not an easy transformation. And I can say that from my personal life journey. That’s what I love about sound bowling, because it’s mild and it helps get there.

AB: And tell me, is there any scientific research that Sound Bowl Healing works or has worked? Has there been any data collection?

DA: They say that the brain in a normal state produces better. Right? And in a state of meditation and calm consciousness, it has alpha waves. So scientific research has shown that when you do sound bowl healing, that it does produce an alpha wave, which gives a feeling of deep relaxation. And with my personal experience and the few people I have done this on, I have seen the effect of it.

AB: Lovely. And do you have any message? Any advice?

DA: Yes. I would say you are the greatest project you’re going to ever work on. So please, love yourself, be kind to yourself, be good to yourself, to you. And remember that everything takes time. But just go through that process. Don’t give up. It will be beautiful.

AB: That’s wonderful. Lastly, will you play us a small meditative piece?

DA: Yes. So, what I would suggest is, if you’re sitting, just close your eyes to absorb the sound. And if you are, you can lie down. That also would be good. And keep your eyes closed.

[Plays the sound bowl]

AB: Thank you. Thank you.

DA: Thank you. You can open your eyes.

AB: That is lovely. That is amazing.

DA: It’s amazing when you play this actually on the body. So that’s what I usually do, and I do it on a very personal level. I play it on your chakras. You can put water into the sound bowl, you can put flowers, and the energy gets much stronger.

AB: That was wonderful. And what a wonderful session that was. Thank you for teaching us. Thanks for joining us. Hope you enjoyed the Wellness Curated podcast. Please subscribe and tell your friends and family about it. And here’s to you leading your best life.