I Tried a Therapeutic Sound Bath + Here’s What Happened
Emoji definitely speak louder than words. In fact, I’d go so far as to say that a recently used emoji page is all you need to know about a person’s current mental state. For instance, if mine is all knives, skulls and the smiley with the X’s for eyes, I’m either dealing with maj period pain or the hot water stopped working in my apartment again. Conversely, if there’s a red heart, a cat with heart eyes, a flame and a bottle of bubbly present, I’ve probably just made plans for a girls’ night out with my besties.
Lately, however, it’s been a constant stream of a crystal ball, shooting stars, a ghost and the alien face. I got way into all things New Age over the summer, attending shamanic journeys (another post for another time), trying a flotation therapy tank, visiting an infrared sauna, getting my tarot cards read and using floral essences every morning. The latest in my mystical journey? Attending a sound bath at Divine Spark, a local Reiki and Thai Massage center.
I learned, during my pre-bath research, that sound baths, or sound therapy, consist of someone playing a series of seven singing bowls while you lay on a mat in a darkened room. The Divine Spark website states that each bowl is “tuned to frequencies which activate and balance your chakras and… the vibrations balance your mind, body and spirit on the cellular, molecular and energetic level.”
The group session is only $10, and doesn’t that seem like a great deal for getting your molecules balanced? If I wasn’t 100 percent sure before, I was in now. I can’t pass up a good deal. Tune me up like a thrift store guitar!
I arrived on the evening of the bath 15 minutes early, uncaffeinated and only moderately full like I read I was supposed to do on the class info page. I found a spot in the (already full) room and unrolled my yoga mat. The woman to my right began carefully unpacking a bag full of crystals and laid them out in a line along her mat, each probably vibing with her chakras in some special way. Our sound bath leader walked by and praised her for her setup which immediately activated my teacher’s pet chakra and roused in me fleeting thoughts of grabbing my car keys, rosewater spray and lip balm from my purse to use as my own personal totems just so I didn’t feel left out.
Once everyone was settled, Rachel cleansed the room’s energy with burning sage and sat in front of us, seven rose quartz bowls circling her in a half moon. She asked us to lay down and explained that if any of the bowls’ singings sounded discordant or unpleasant, that probably meant that your specific chakra was unbalanced. She also mentioned that if, at any point, “you start to choke,” the bathrooms were right around the corner. That gave me more than a moment’s pause for concern as it felt a little exorcism-y but what do I know? I didn’t even bring any crystals.
And then she began playing the bowls. A sound bath really is just exactly that — the reverberating sounds that come off the bowls feel as if they are quite literally washing over you like waves of water. I was immediately into it. The sounds are overwhelming in the best way; if you have trouble meditating on your own, a sound bath is a smart way to force your focus. The crystal bowls are loud, hypnotizing and fill the space so that it’s almost impossible to think of anything else. They also just make really pretty sounds.
Most sound baths last between 30 and 45 minutes; the time went by quickly and I wasn’t ready for it to end when it did. It’s an incredibly relaxing experience and I left feeling clear headed, content and at peace. Like I said, if you enjoy yoga, meditation, massages or any other relaxation techniques, I would definitely recommend adding a sound bath to your natural wellness regimen.
Would you try a sound bath to help align your chakra energy? Tweet us @BritandCo and give us your thoughts!
(Photos via Integatron and Getty)