Singing bowls allow us to concentrate on pure sound energy. We hear the tone and all the harmonizing tones that the bowl makes when struck. The sound of the bowl gives the ear a focal point, a drishti for the ear to help remain in the present moment. Striking the bowl harder or softer makes a difference in the sounds that emerge from the bowl.
Singing bowls are used in music, meditation and some religious practices. Many notes can be heard depending on how the bowl is played. A mallet is used to strike the bowl, causing it to vibrate. When struck with a mallet, singing bowls produce harmonious sounds, which brings a sense of deep relaxation.
This bowl has two notes blending at once. See if you can pick out each of them, and listen to how they interact with each other.
Bowls can also be “sung” using a circular motion around the lip of the bowl. This causes the bowl to resonate and ring out. Different bowls will have different sounds. Some have the ability to generate various sounds depending on how they are struck. Generally smaller bowls have higher tones, while larger bowls have lower ones. The types of metals used to make a bowl vary but may include brass,copper, and tin. Sometimes small amounts of iron, lead, gold, silver and even mercury are added in the belief that this will create a better sounding bowl. Bowls can be old or new, hand hammered or machine made. For purposes of meditation, the age of the bowl does not matter. It is the sound quality of the bowl that counts.
To really hear the bowl we must listen to the ‘non-sound’ that is made between the sounds of the bowl being struck. This empty space between the sounds allows us to make sense of the soundscape and is equally a part of the listening experience.
Play these sound files in the blog entry a few times. Try to focus on listening to the sound of the bowl. Keep listening as the sound ends and silence returns.
Interested in hearing more? Are you near the Connecticut New London area? I invite you to join me at my next sound concert on October 12, 2018. Here is an opportunity to rest in stillness and allow the power of sound healing help center you amidst the chaos of life. Increase your focus and awareness through practices of deep relaxation.
Details are here https://www.facebook.com/events/2187659844825742/
or http://blissworksyoga.org under workshops.
For those of us in blog space, don’t worry. Lolly and I will be exploring the healing power of sound and singing bowls in future posts.