I realised the other day why I LOVE playing sound for people!
It presses PAUSE on their minds!
I noticed at Xmas time amongst family (sisters, parents, husband, daughters, grandma, nieces, nephews) for four days how many times we were all triggered by each other's different beliefs and mind-sets and parenting styles and eating habits and value systems. There were no major blow ups or anything ... but you could feel the tension in the air ... I find it SO interesting how much we all differ yet we still expect each other to think the same way as we do! If only we could just be curious and interested in each other's way of thinking instead of trying to change their way of thinking to match our own! Luckily we are family and conscious enough to to not kill each other, be able to notice these triggers and keep loving each other ... especially after we've all had a break!
Anyway, it made me think about why I love facilitating sound sessions for groups and for couples. It presses the PAUSE button on our overactive mind! When surrounded by sounds from bowls and gongs etc most of our attention goes to the sound. There isn't much space left for thinking and judging. Plus of course everyone is lying down with their eyes close and not talking ... which helps too of course!
When there is no mind thinking and judging and wishing and hoping and dreading and fearing then what is left?
Being with each other as a group or couple of human BEINGS. Not human doings or judgings!
I can imagine that if everyone in the room started talking about food or parenting or politics or recycling or birthing ... even if it was a "spiritual/conscious" type of group ... the thinking and judging would arise pretty quick! And that beautiful human connection that was tangible in the room during the sound session would disappear in a puff of thought! Which is why I am SO grateful that I mostly work with people when they are lying down quietly with their eyes closed just BEING. It's a rare and beautiful thing!
When people get a taste of how it feels to be in the presence of others without thought it becomes easier to BE with others when you're not in a sound session! You get a taste, you feel good, you connect with others more easily, you decide to continue to "practice" BEING in this state in your day to day life with others.
Sound sessions therefore lead to a more PEACEFUL world!!
From War to Peace in 5 Simple Steps!
Judging (thinking that someone else's thinking is "wrong") of course creates disconnection between lovers, family members and friends. It is very painful and just shows how our beliefs and expectations of others can create tension, arguments, divorce and WAR!
Here is one way you can use the POWER OF SOUND if you are feeling disconnected from your partner or would like to create connection within a group of people ...
1. Consciously make the choice to press PAUSE and just BE for a few minutes for the purpose of re-connecting again.
2. Breathe deeply 3 times together
3. If you have a crystal singing bowl tap it gently 3 times then play it.
4. Breathe in deeply and then on your exhalation make the "Ahhhhhh" sound together. You could make this sound 3 times or do this for a set period of time. The longer you do this the deeper into presence and being you will go ...
5. When you feel "complete" sit in silence for a few minutes and enjoy the space, peace and connection you have created between each other.
Wouldn't it be nice if we could do this when we felt tension rising in our relationships ... or at work meetings to re-connect the team ... or in classrooms when the kids were starting to go crazy ... or in the family when there is a dis-connect ... or at Xmas time with our families!
When our desire for peace becomes stronger than our desire to be "right" then more and more people will find ways such as this to choose peace ... I'm sure of it!
I know of other ways to create a sense of connection with people using percussion instruments and recorded music at schools, with your team at work, your family and partner. So, stay tuned for more blogs on this topic!
For now though grab a partner and start "Ahhhhhh" ing and let me know how you go!
PS. The crystal singing bowl I recommend for "Ahhhh"ing (toning) with in this way is the The SoundBirth Bowl!
If you would like to book a couples re-connecting session with me in Bedfordale just email: email@example.com
Recently someone called me to ask specifically how to PLAY a Koshi chime or two for a group of people ... so here is what I said!
Play Close to Their Ears!
Play them close to people's ears so they can hear the the notes, harmonies, overtones and resonance clearly. You can play the chimes further away from people of course, but the sound won't be as beautiful for them. I usually play the chimes at the end of my sound sessions holding one chime in each hand and spend about 15 seconds tinkling the chimes near each person's ears giving them all a taste of their beautiful sound. This usually puts a smile on their face ... then I move on to the next person. If you have a large group you might not have much time to indulge each person ... If a small group or individual INDULGE them!
Experiment with the Musical Elements!
I have a Classical music background so I can't help but use what I learnt about musical composition and the elements of music. So here is what I consciously do throughout my entire sound session actually! I make sure I play slow and fast, loud and soft, I repeat pitches and rhythms, I have busy sections followed by silence, I have harmonious sections and dissonance sections, I have harsh sounds followed by soothing sounds ... Contrast and Balance is the key!
So when it comes to playing the Koshi chimes you can create busy/loud sections by playing them fast ... I do this by swirling them around in circles. And to contrast this you can stop for a bit to appreciate silence and then start again by playing from side to side which is slower than swirling them and isn't so busy. When you go from side to side you can also hear the different pitches and how they harmonise with each other.
You can explore harmony by combining the different elements by playing two chimes at a time. I personally like the Air and Fire chimes together. But you could combine any of the elements and see what you think!
Avoid Koshi Noise!
Just a little note ... if facilitating a sound session be aware of the noises you can make when picking up the chimes and putting them back down. Gently gently gently put them down so that the string/ring you were holding doesn't knock on the side of the chime and so the chime doesn't fall over on it's side and wake everyone up suddenly! Also before you even start your session ensure that your chimes are untangled and ringing beautifully. You don't want to start the chime section of the session and find that they aren't ringing properly!
That's all for now! If you have any other ideas or questions please let me know!
Enjoy those beautiful chimes!
Click HERE to purchase your Koshi's!
So you have just received your beautiful Koshi Chimes and now you are wondering where to hang them and what you can do with them! Here are some of the ways I have used my chimes and ways I have heard other people using theirs over the years...
People often ask where to hang their chimes. So far I have hung mine in some of the doorways in my house using one of those hooks that have a sticker on the back (you can buy from supermarket). Whenever I go through the doorway I dingle the chimes sprinkling myself with their magic. My last baby used to LOVE this of course ... every time we went under the doorway she looked up and pointed and insisted I play them! She always smiled and wanted to play them herself. I let her touch them gently but was careful she didn't grab them and pull them down!
If you do have a baby hanging a chime above her in the car works really well to help soothe them, distract them and to give them something beautiful to listen to while you are driving. I know that my babies never liked the car very much and these chimes worked a treat for my last baby! (Make sure the chimes are tied securely so that they won't fall on the baby!!!). Another place to hang them if you have a baby is on their pram! It could become "the
familiar sound" that triggers sleep time which you can then use as a tool when they need
a nap or YOU need them to nap!
Most people hang them inside next to a window where a breeze gently blows through. Someone told me that this helps them to fall asleep at night if they've hung theirs in their bedroom. And others have felt "blessed" by an angel every time it tinkles in their kitchen or living area. Anywhere undercover outside is perfect too ... on a verandah, patio area. If you can hear them tinkling and they're not getting wet it is a perfect place for them. If you do want to hang them outside in the weather make sure you varnish them to protect the wood from rotting away.
REMEMBER that these chimes are not "normal" chimes... They are more like musical instruments! So hanging them is great ... but PLAYING them with intention is the main reason why they were created. Here are some ways you can play them for others and for yourself!
If you have young children a lovely ritual to do with them before going to sleep at
night time is ask them "What are you grateful for today?". Or, "What was the best part of
your day?". Or, "What would you like to do in your life one day?". Then they say what
they loved or share one of their dreams and you play the koshi chimes around their little
bodies. My kids think the chimes sound like fairies making their wishes come true or just
listening to what they had to say. This ritual really is a very nurturing way to end the
day ... and you will find that your children will ask you to do this every night because kids
KNOW what is good for them!!
If you give massages or facilitate relaxation or meditation sessions, a beautiful way to end
the session is by playing these chimes close to people's ears. Once again ... the sound is
nurturing and relaxing and seems to be the perfect way to end any "session". You could
also invite your client/s to think about what they want to bring into their lives at the
moment while you play the chimes. Sound amplifies your thoughts so thinking about
what you WANT is important when listening to quality sounds such as these
chimes ... they are powerful manifesting tools!
If you are a midwife or doula supporting a woman during labour you could see if she
enjoys hearing the chimes in between contractions ... during the quiet, relaxing time. You could also introduce them when you visit the new Mum and her baby during post-natal visits to help her to relax and bond with her baby.
My 3 year old fractured her leg recently so I soothed her every night with the chimes.
She asks for them every night now and says she LOVES them and even gives them a
cuddle! So if you know someone in pain (physical or emotional) then you can gift them with the soothing sound of a Koshi chime!
There you go! Some quick and simple ways to use your chimes! I hope this helps in
some way. Please share with me where you have chosen to hang your chimes and how
you have used them in your life!
If you want to have a listen to the 4 elements Aria (Air), Terra (Earth), Ignis (Fire) and Aqua (water) CLICK HERE!
Nicole Lloyd B(Mus) is a mother of four girls and creator of SoundBirth. Here she shares her experiences using sound before, during and after the birth and anything else about sound or birth that she feels like writing about!