Welcome to my first Sounds Heal Studio blog post! I hope to share information with you about sound healing through testimonials, interviews and discussions with clients, interviews with other sound healers, and research into sound healing. In addition, I want to let you know about my own journey into sound healing. In this first post, there’s a lot of news and developments!
I am delighted to announce that I have joined the team of teachers for the Academy of Sound Healing International. This is where I received my Level 1 certification and Level 2 diploma in Sound Healing. I am tutoring several students in sound healing and will be teaching a Level 1 immersion workshop in Iowa this October. Check out my events page for more details on this and other upcoming workshops and sound healing concerts.
In this blog post I would like to share with you details about my upcoming travels and studies in India and Nepal, this November–December! In my sound healing studies over the past couple of years I have been amazed by the paths I’ve been lead down. Each discovery leads to another connection, each connecting with a myriad of others, presenting an ever-expanding web of discoveries and insights. Whether learning a sound healing technique, investigating research and background sources, working with a client, or comparing notes with other practitioners, each opens up the floodgates and suggests new channels to explore.
At some point Nada Yoga was mentioned in my studies. Nada Yoga is an “ancient spiritual art and science of inner transformation through sound and tone.” Nada Yoga involves both external and internal sounds. I was very curious about what this meant because I had been working on active listening and finding that my hearing was developing, expanding, and becoming more sensitive through my sound healing studies. Not only was I hearing more depth to sound and listening to “silence,” I was also sensing energy emitting from things that were struck. For example, when I would strike a Tibetan bowl, I could actually see the sound waves around the bowl, see their energy and how it moved and reacted to where I was in proximity to a client. Looking into Nada Yoga seemed to be looking deeper into practice and concentrating on subtle sounds and energy. I’ve now read several books on Nada Yoga and will recommend them at the end of this post. They provide excellent exercises on developing one’s ears and sensitivity to inner and outer sounds.
Online research led me to discover the Nada Yoga School in Rishikesh, India. The moment I looked at their Nada Yoga Teacher Training, I knew I had to do it. India has called me in my dreams for many years, but this was something I could not pass up. Here are a few details about what I will be learning this November at the Nada Yoga School: Nada Yoga philosophy, theory of sound, music therapy, proper Sanskrit mantra chanting, learning to sing kirtans and bhajans “perfectly,” lessons in Indian classical music—sitar, tabla, harmonium, vocals, and more. And then, how to match my body’s frequency to an instrument’s sound, Yoga philosophy, anatomy and physiology, meditation, shatkarma, pranayama, asanas, intro to Ayurveda, plus sightseeing trips, concerts, and other activities. And finally, at the end of month—official Yoga Alliance RYT 200 hour certification!
This is a big leap for me, a big experience. The last time I dropped everything to take off for the unknown, I spent a year in Scotland for a graduate program in folklore and ethnomusicology. It was the best decision I’d ever made! So many experiences that changed me forever and memories I will always hold dear. I cannot really imagine what studying in India and then exploring in Nepal will bring, but I do believe in the power of seeing with new eyes, and in this case, new ears. I hope this journey will give me a deeper grounding for developing an individual self-care practice and an ability to help others more deeply through sound.
About a year ago, I had a vivid dream in which I was leaning against an ancient archway, savoring the breeze on my face and the view of a bowl-shaped valley below me. Later in the dream I was down in the valley below, dropped off onto a bustling cobblestone street with people going about their daily life. Someone noticed me standing in the middle of this scene—likely with my mouth open or a lost look on my face—and said, “This is Kathmandu.” After waking up that morning, I searched online a bit to find a temple that overlooked Kathmandu—and indeed, Kathmandu is in a bowl-shaped valley—and came across the view from the Monkey Temple (Swayambhunath). I am pretty sure that is where I was gazing down at the city in my dream—but it must have been an earlier time because it was not as densely populated. I was definitely by myself at the temple and not in the height of tourism season!
This dream is one of many reasons for my visit to Nepal, and I suppose maybe I’ll know whether that’s where I was and have that feeling that I’ve been there before when I am in Kathmandu in December. When I decided to attend the Nada Yoga training in India, the proximity of Nepal made it a very easy decision to spend some time there. Besides a visit to the Monkey Temple, I will be visiting the Pashupatinath Temple, Patan Durbar Square, Golden Temple and the Golden Temple Singing Bowls & Healing Centre, Chandragiri Hill, Boudhanath stupa, Bhaktapur Square, the Thangka Painting School, and Kathmandu Durbar Square. That’s what’s planned—we’ll see what else happens.
In the meantime, before I take off on the adventure, I am really enjoying doing sound healing sessions with dementia residents at a local senior home. Seeing the joy and smiles, hearing them sing and clap to music and relax a bit is an honor and pleasure. I am continuing to take appointments for one-on-one sound healing sessions, so please let me know if you are interested in exploring the benefits of sound healing. For more information about my Introduction to Sound Healing workshops and Level 1 workshops, see my events page: http://soundshealstudio.com/events.html. Thank you for visiting my first blog post!
For information about the Nada Yoga School in Rishikesh, India, see https://www.nadyoga.org/nada-yoga-teacher-training-in-india/
Nada Yoga book reading recommendations:
The Practice of Nada Yoga: Meditation on the Inner Sacred Sound, by Baird Hersey.
The Yoga of Sound: Tapping the Hidden Power of Music and Chant, by Russill Paul.
The Law of Attention: Nada Yoga and the Way of Inner Vigilance, by Edward Salim Michael.
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