Despite being a spiritual skeptic, I’m always willing to try new ways to "up my spirited life".
"These chakras ain’t gonna align themselves!": said my Sound Bathing Teacher while gently stocking some crystal bowls laid over the fancy wooden flooring.
I should note, this wasn’t my first rodeo. I’d experienced the lulling energy of a sound bath a couple of times before, so I already knew I was gearing up for one of the greatest snooze since Mr Jeffrey's Maths classes. ( hated that subject at school lol)
Described as vibrational therapy, sound bathing is like an upgraded version of meditation coming all the way from Asia, in which the sweet sounds of a healer rimming. Large crystal bowls are usually used to drown out any negative thought and "pull the plug" on your busy life ...for at least 30 mins. Dreamy.
I adore the sound bathing because it’s the most rookie-friendly of all the new-age therapies.
It doesn’t require any in-depth knowledge as such. Just the will to try something new and go with the flow.
“Just turning up and being ready to receive is enough, and the rest is taken care of by the sounds,” adds Josie from Eleven Healing, the very floaty, serene healer leading this session at London’s The Mandrake hotel.
“The best advice is to let go of any expectation of what may happen as it will likely be a very different experience every time.”
"How does a session goes" : I hear?
At a sound bath, everyone lies down on yoga mats, usually with blankets and cushions to get comfortable and a lavender-filled pillow to cover their eyes.
At the front of the room, the healer sits amongst a selection of crystal bowls and instruments.
Josie’s classes always start with her burning sage to cleanse the "bad" energy in the room before starting to ‘play’ the bowls.
She usually channels her inner Hermione Granger by drawing her wand around the inside of each one in a particular order to make a melody of sorts.
“My alchemy crystal singing bowls are made from 99.99% high quality quartz crystal and are infused with other crystals and minerals such as amethyst, platinum, selenite and palladium. Each bowl has its own unique frequency which affects various parts of the body and energy system,” Josie explains.
“It can be a very physical experience. Sometimes the body can twitch and move as it is naturally guided to shake out any old emotions.”
The vibrations are really intense and you can feel them resonate throughout your whole body.
This physical sensation (weirdly) translates by a drop of body temperature ( totally normal) ... hence the blanket.
That's probably why Some people rather conduct sound bathing sessions in warm water.
Like many niche therapies, sound healing might have only recently reached your Instagram feed but with a rise of +213% on google search, you about to hear about in more often in 2020.
“Sound is one of the most ancient forms of healing tools used,” explains Josie, but the reason it’s resonating with stressed-out millennials right now is because our love of music has honed our appreciation of the power of sound.
“We all connect to music. It has the power to heal, and has a rapid and powerful effect on us. Just listening to your favorite track can shift your emotional and mental state. It literally releases endorphins into you brain which induce feelings of pleasure,” she explains.
Unfortunately, sound bathing isn’t really something you can recreate at home as a session needs to be conducted by someone to help focus completly.
However, Josie does recommend the Third Ear app though, “It has all kinds of sound recordings available to help you meditate and experience sound from wherever you are.”
There are recordings of a couple of her crystal bowl sessions on there, too, which, without the clarity of IRL crystal vibrations won’t give you as intense an experience, but sometimes it's nice to lie there and just ‘be’, right?