I wrote this blog on the return train journey from another lovely session with my gong and sound therapist teacher Sheila. When you practice beside a gongmaster like Sheila, I’m always humbled by the power of the gong and Sheila’s wisdom and skill. Sheila has a 60” Symphonic which looms large over the room, but I always practice on her 34” Symphonic. This last session saw me try out her Mercury gong. I’d always wanted to try it, I felt this gong would be perfect for me as a writer working (still) on a novel draft.
It’s interesting as, when I chose my gong, I had the choice between Mercury and Chiron to ‘take home that day’ and I choose Chiron. Sheila told me that it was right for me back then, and still will be now. Many of you will know that the Chiron Planet gong is a Shamanic gong that works on generational karma or any karma load. So it is powerful at shifting stuff. But now, I believe I’m ready to take on the Mercury gong for my true voice and throat chakra. Perhaps I wasn’t back then. The next day, after being able to sort some issues out in conversation (unable to make headway before) I placed my order with my gong dealer. I’m now waiting for news of when Paiste will release another batch of this gong for sale. There is a huge wait list for gongs these days. We are in turbulent times and the gong is the master healer for humans and even animals.
What does the word Naad mean? It describes “the essence of all sound,” the vibrational harmony of the Infinite. Naad Yoga is based on the experience of how sound vibrations affect the body, mind, and spirit through the movement of the tongue and mouth, and bring about glandular secretions and changes in the chemicals of any brain.
When we work with sound in lessons here at YSY, through mantra chanting or hearing, these healing soundwaves of our gong during a Kundalini relaxation, yoga Nidra or gong bath, work on the deepest cellular level within us. The Naad – the essence of all sound, connects little me to the big me or Universal Mind, the infinite. This is how we access our higher self and go deeper into our authentic selves. Our non-dualistic mind. Our Oneness.
“The Gong is the first and last instrument for the human mind, there is only one thing that can supersede and command the human mind, the sound of the Gong. It is the first sound in the universe, the sound that created this universe. It’s the basic creative sound. To the mind, the sound of the gong is like a mother and father that gave it birth. The mind has no power to resist a gong that is well played.”
We are cellular beings and we respond to the energetic ripple of sound waves. We speak in vibrating waves – our uttered words are no than the shaping of sound into patterns that we and fellow humans recognise. Something more subtle happens when we speak, sing, chant, be it a said prayer or mantra or sung hymn or chant. Our words cause our tongue to touch some of the 84000 meridian points on the upper and lower palate of our mouth. These points stimulate areas of our brain and this brings chemical change – hopeful for the good of ourselves.
It is therefore wise, to speak kind uplifting words to ourselves and others. Words hurt and words heal. It is said that words stay in the universe energetically for ever.
Have you ever sensed or felt or known, an atmosphere of reverence and sacredness when you visit a cathedral or church? When you sit on the pew or kneel – stillness enters your body and creates a space within you. It is believed that this sacred energy emanates from all the whispered prayers, chants, hymns and music – that the hallowed walls have held. These raise the vibration and clean the energy of a space. Did you know, you can also clear a room with loud music? The sound shifts energy blocks as efficiently as incense or white sage.
When we listen to the gong sound waves, we are listening to another universal sound – and one that shifts our focus away from our ‘left thinking’ analytical brain and into our ‘right creative ‘brain. It helps us give our left brains a rest – we spend most of our day there – and enables us to access alpha then theta and sometimes – delta brainwaves. Delta waves are deep rest waves. When you listen in theta waves – you ‘do the work’ as these waves do the deep healing and allow us insight into any challenges we may have.
Finally, here’s a thought. The following are well known opening lines.
“In the beginning was the word and the word was with God and the word was God”
This is the literal translation – but the Word means sound. Everything began as the energy of sound – the universal Ong that some practices also chant as Om. – is the first sound, the first creative sound. Therefore, through sound, we access God – or a god as we know god for, we all have our own version of god. Sometimes my god is my dog. And that’s ok. Because dog is god spelt backwards.
Times and dates show on the timetable for Gong Baths, yoga Nidra and Kundalini yoga – when the gong is played.
Fridays 6.30-7.30pm will alternate between Gong bath or Yoga Nidra with Gong.