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Article by Dieter Luske

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The Power of Music - Sound Therapy

or .... do we need a Music Diet?

Music, sound and noise have amazing powers; they can be soothing, relaxing, healing or disturbing, irritating, stimulating and everything in between.

Music and sounds are vibrations, actually, everything is vibration.  Electrons spinning around the nucleus of an atom, everything is moving and everything is in vibration. And if it is in vibration, it is putting out a sound, even if we can’t hear it.

Our cells and our whole being is in vibration too. 

The question is, how much are we in harmony with the frequencies and sounds (and noice) around us?

We all know about nutrition and diets but as the noise around us increases, do we have to consider being on a music, sound and noise diet?

Sound travels as a wave form, which we call frequency.  Slow waves make low sounds, fast waves make high sounds. The sound we can hear is from around 16 to about 16,000 cycles per second. Yet just because we can't hear something does not mean it is not vibrating.

The role of healing by means of musical sounds and the medical role of healing the body were incorporated within the shaman in archaic society, and has a centuries-old history stretching back through all cultures.

The task of the medicine man was to provide the patient not only with medicines but with healing chants.

The idea that various organs of the body resonate to specific frequencies is well known. Disease can be seen as the physical manifestation of wrong sound frequencies. By exposing the diseased organ to the correct sound frequencies the wrong ones are overwritten and harmony is reinstated.

The human organism is subject to biorhythms, which means we resonate to music in the same way as a string on a violin. The nervous system is such a string par excellence. That is why the rhythmic processes of the organism can be strengthened or weakened by the use of music as a stimulant or relaxant.

And it is a fact that fast music quickens the pulse, and that music does influence both blood pressure and heart rhythm, as can be verified by an ECG.

In the West there is a very strong tradition in Church music and the evoking of “emotional-spiritual states”, by hymn singing is well established.

However, it is in the Indian spiritual tradition that we find the most extensive and detailed use of sound and music in aiding the individual soul on its journey of union with the self.

There are literally hundreds of sound mantras in the Indian traditions for varying purposes, some for becoming fabulously wealthy, some for curing common ailments. Mantras, in order to work, need to be repeated over and over.

The primary mantra in the Indian system is OM, a mystic primordial sound which transcends all common concepts of sound and material reality. It includes all sound frequencies in the same way that the colour white includes all other colours. The repetition of the OM mantra produces a deep resonance in the body which allows consciousness to surrender stress and emotional discomfort into the resonance.

Back to my initial question, do we need a music-sound-noise diet?

I believe we do, and the reason for this is simple, we know that sound frequencies will influence us, it is therefore wise to choose the frequencies you are exposed to, at least the ones you can control.

Here are some examples:

If you are stressed, don’t listen to loud hard rock music, it would stimulate you even further.

Your music diet choice would be a relaxation type music, or classic baroque music. If you like it more modern, try some lay back jazz, but most of all start to be aware of what you are listening too.

Don’t just have the radio blaring all day long without taking control of what frequencies you are submitting yourself too.

If you live in a city, the “noise pollution” itself can make you feel sick.

Become aware for a moment of the constant low hum of a big city, interrupted by loud or  violent noises, it has a depressing function if subjected to it for too long.

Try to get out into nature, if you can hear birds chirping, you know the world around you is in order. It has a calming reassuring healing effect, so has the sound of the sea, with wave after wave rhythmically washing to the shore.

Make sure you get yourself some of that, it’s free, and it will balance out some of the noise pollution.

You may also try to block out some of the noise pollution; earplugs will work to a certain extent, but remember, we are talking frequencies, any frequency, even the ones we can’t hear. Therefore I urge anyone to remove yourself from noise pollution as much as possible, esp. on days or hours when you don’t need to be in a noise polluted environment.

Like a diet, it’s all in the balance.

Often people ask me about extreme type of music genres, like music which is classified as noise art, or black metal, which is an extreme sub genre of heavy metal. It uses fast tempos, shrieked vocals, highly distorted guitars played with tremolo picking, double-kick drumming, and unconventional song structure.

Is it bad or good?

First it depends if you like it or not, secondly it depends on how long and how often you are listening to it.

It’s the balance again, if you get stimulated by that, maybe creatively, it’s all good, and you may want to listen to experimental type sounds, noise music when you feel like it.
I would predict, if you would listen to it all the time or most of the time, it will have a negative effect on your system, your mind and nervous system, and depending on frequencies and speed, your organs will be effected, probably in a subtle way, but noticeable over a period of a year or longer.

Any noise, sound or music which you are subjected for too long, has a similar effect as the “Om mantra” we talked about, but in a distractive type of way, mentally and physically and probably spiritually as well.

To sum up the Diet Type Scenario, an unbalanced or mono diet never works, it doesn't matter how much you love kidney pies, if that is the only thing you eat you will get sick. Too much of a good thing can make you sick, obviously, so can too much of a bad thing.

Please indulge in a well balanced music, sound and noise diet. Sample some new sounds, some you never had before, it will increase the balance. And most of all control your sound environment, choose your music wisely, and become aware which sounds and frequency make you feel good, positive, happy and energetic.

20 Aug 2012

Article/Information supplied by Dieter Luske

Disclaimer - Any general advice given in any article should not be relied upon and should not be taken as a substitute for visiting a qualified medical Doctor.