Sangeeta Nada Chikitsa; Music as a Therapy

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Music has played a significant role in the expression of devotion and emotions in cultures across the world. For instance, in India, Hindu devotees sang in praise of God with one pitch known as “Eka Swaragayan”. In contrast, in the West, Catholics and Christians began singing in chorus around the 15th century, resulting in the formation of ‘Harmony’ and ‘Heterophony’ – the basic ornaments of Western music. Singing praises and expressing emotions through music is a therapy that is used today in developed countries to cure mental disorders.

When people express devotion through their voices, their minds associate with various emotions such as love, compassion, kindness, sorrow, loneliness, and serenity. This therapy is unknowingly applied to the person’s mind, and listening to a prayer can soothe the mind of a religious person in distress. Today, music therapy has developed into several branches and is utilized for curing mental disorders.

The development of the nervous system in the foetus occurs much earlier than the heart, which begins to beat in the third or fourth month of pregnancy. The rhythm of the mother’s heartbeat plays a significant role in the foetus’s development. When a woman becomes pregnant, she develops an affection for the embryo in her womb. The rhythm of the foetus’s heartbeat creates a connection between the mother and the child, causing the mother to be cautious while carrying out daily functions such as bathing, eating, drinking, walking, sleeping, and even enjoying. The mother becomes careful about the pictures she sees and the sounds she hears, as they can affect the nervous system of the child.

If the mother hears a loud noise that excites her, it will cause the same feeling in the child. Similarly, if the mother hears pleasant music and is happy, the baby in the womb will experience similar pleasant feelings. The good feelings that are passed on to the child can have positive effects on the child’s development and adolescence. In summary, music has played a significant role in the expression of emotions and devotion, and it can also have a positive impact on the development of a foetus.

When individuals visit a temple to offer their devotion, they are given the opportunity to cleanse their minds through the act of listening to or participating in the singing of devotional songs, hymns, and sthothras. This purification of the mind is the result of the therapy of music, which automatically affects the devotee’s mind. If the concept of music therapy is well developed and applied, it could potentially correct several abnormal conditions of the mind. Since many ailments affecting the human body are attributed to an unbalanced state of the mind, a purified, corrected, and balanced mind is conducive to good physical health as well.

Several technology-developed countries have produced sensitive instruments to detect the effect of music on the mind. India, as a country that has conducted research in this field, has found that even plants could be influenced by music therapy. Indian psychologists have explained that music activates the sympathetic system and certain muscle tissues in the body to produce an aesthetic state in the mind known as ‘Chamathkara’. In the same way, plant cells are activated by music to produce better or higher yield. Researchers in Germany have also found that cows listening to good music give a higher yield of milk.

Sound is a type of energy that causes the human body to react. The molecular activity of the sensory nervous system sets up changes in the fibers and cells of the central organ. This disturbance is transmitted along the motor nerves, passing from the central organ to certain muscles, setting up a corresponding disturbance in the muscular fibers, causing them to contract and release in various ways. This series of molecular changes is known as a reflex action. The eyelids may flicker at the flash of light, and the whole body may react to a loud noise. On the other hand, a sweet sound generates pleasure in the listener’s mind.

The impact of different frequencies of musical notes on the human mind has been studied and it has been observed that the combination of notes plays a crucial role in regulating the mood of an individual. The reflex actions formed in response to certain combinations of notes are directly related to the mood being experienced. It has been discovered that the effect of music on the mind is greater than that of drugs, implying that a combination of notes can affect the mind more than a combination of chemicals. Music has been used as anesthesia in surgical operations, which highlights its potential therapeutic benefits.

Research has also shown that music can affect plants as well. For example, a music teacher used to conduct his classes under a coconut tree which was dying due to its few leaves and lack of fruit. After about three months of daily music classes, the tree started producing coconuts and new leaves, indicating that it had been rejuvenated by the music.

Music has also been found to have a significant impact on human behavior. In one instance, a misbehaving student who was disliked by the entire faculty was encouraged to attend music classes, which resulted in a significant change in his behavior. Similarly, a team of musicians representing various countries visited several places of musical importance in West Germany and spent the night in a pub where a band played throughout the night. Initially, the atmosphere was pleasant, but as the night wore on and the sound became more intense, most of the foreign musicians were unable to tolerate it and left. The following day, they suffered from severe headaches, indicating that music of high intensity can harm the sensory nerve system.

In London, research has shown that many people who are addicted to listening to pop and rock music through earphones eventually go deaf. This highlights the importance of being mindful of the volume and intensity of the music we listen to, as well as the potential benefits of using music as a therapeutic tool for the mind and body.

The above information suggests that choosing the right kind of music and using it in a soothing manner can help promote a calm state of mind, which is the basis of Music Therapy. There is a historical connection between Gandharva Veda and Ayurveda, and evidence shows that Bhaskara, a royal Ayurvedic physician, had a grandson named Sarangadeva who became a musicologist and Ayurvedic physician. Sarangadeva wrote two books – ‘Sangeetha Ratnakara’ which explains the science and theory of Indian music, and ‘Adhyatmaviveka’, a book on Ayurveda.

The Gandharva Veda describes 19 chakras in the human body that are considered as the sensory centers of the body, and also highlights the relationship between musical notes, channels, and physical or mental disorders. Each chakra is associated with a particular frequency of sound and is linked to specific physical, emotional, and spiritual functions. Imbalances or blockages in these chakras can lead to various illnesses and disorders.

The concept of chakras and their imbalance in the body is a fundamental aspect of Ayurveda, yoga, and many other traditional healing practices. The human body is believed to have seven chakras, each associated with a specific area of the body and related to certain emotional and psychological states. The chakras are described as spinning wheels of energy that influence the flow of prana or life force throughout the body.

In order to treat imbalances in the chakras, various techniques are used, including the use of music therapy. The idea behind using music therapy for chakra healing is that different musical notes or frequencies can stimulate and balance specific chakras.

Each chakra is associated with a specific note or frequency. By playing music with these specific notes, it is believed that the corresponding chakra can be stimulated and brought back into balance.

To use music therapy for chakra healing, one should first identify which chakra or chakras are imbalanced. This can be done through various methods such as meditation, energy healing, or simply paying attention to physical and emotional symptoms.

Once the imbalanced chakra is identified, one can select music that corresponds to the associated note or frequency. This can include listening to music, playing an instrument, or singing. It is important to choose music that is soothing and relaxing, as stress and anxiety can also contribute to chakra imbalances.

The next step is to focus on the specific chakra while listening to the music. This can be done through visualization, meditation, or simply focusing one’s attention on the area of the body associated with the chakra. As the music plays, one should allow themselves to relax and feel the energy of the music and its effects on the chakra.

Over time, with regular practice, the use of music therapy for chakra healing can help to balance and harmonize the chakras, promoting overall physical, emotional, and spiritual wellbeing.

To correct chakra imbalances and promote healing, a technique called sound therapy or vibrational therapy can be used. This involves the use of musical notes and vibrations to activate and balance the chakras, thereby restoring health and well-being.

The following steps can be followed for using musical notes in correcting chakra imbalances:

  1. Identify the affected chakra: The first step is to identify the chakra that is imbalanced or blocked. This can be done through various techniques such as meditation, yoga, or energy healing.
  2. Determine the associated musical note: Each chakra is associated with a particular frequency or musical note. Its important to identify and play the correct note for each chakra.
  3. Listen to the corresponding musical note: Once the correct note is identified, the individual can listen to the corresponding musical note using various methods such as singing bowls, tuning forks, or recorded music. The sound vibrations can be applied directly to the body or heard through headphones.
  4. Focus on the chakra: While listening to the musical note, the individual should focus on the affected chakra, visualizing the sound vibrations entering and balancing the energy center.
  5. Repeat the process: The process can be repeated daily or as often as needed until the chakra is balanced and the associated physical or emotional symptoms are relieved.

Note ; It is important to note that sound therapy should be used as a complementary therapy and not as a substitute for medical treatment. Individuals should consult with a healthcare provider before starting any new form of therapy.

Organ Responding Frequency

Every human organ has a specific frequency range to which it naturally resonates, also known as its natural frequency or resonance frequency. This is because every organ in our body is made up of cells, tissues, and atoms that are constantly vibrating and producing a unique electromagnetic field. The frequency range of each organ is determined by its size, shape, and molecular composition.

For example, the heart has a natural frequency of around 1 Hz, which means it vibrates at a rate of one cycle per second. The lungs have a natural frequency of around 0.2 Hz, while the brain operates at frequencies ranging from 0.5 Hz to 40 Hz, depending on the state of consciousness.

When our organs are healthy and functioning properly, they produce harmonic and coherent frequencies. However, when an organ is not functioning properly, it may produce frequencies that are out of sync or incoherent with the rest of the body. This can lead to an imbalance in the body’s electromagnetic field, which can contribute to various health problems.

There is no consensus among scientists about the exact frequencies of human organs. However, some researchers and practitioners in the field of sound therapy have proposed specific frequencies for different organs based on their understanding of traditional healing practices and modern scientific studies.

Here are some of the frequencies that have been suggested for different human organs:

  1. Brain: 0.5-30 Hz (delta, theta, alpha, beta, and gamma waves)
  2. Heart: 1 Hz (resting rate)
  3. Lungs: 0.1-0.3 Hz (breathing rate)
  4. Liver: 317.83 Hz
  5. Kidneys: 319.88 Hz
  6. Pancreas: 117.3 Hz
  7. Spleen: 160 Hz
  8. Stomach: 110 Hz
  9. Intestines: 3-5 Hz (peristalsis)

It’s important to note that these frequencies are not universally accepted or scientifically proven, and there is ongoing debate and research on the topic. Additionally, the frequencies of organs may vary depending on factors such as age, gender, health conditions, and environmental factors.

Bharatiya Sangita is an extremely sophisticated form of music that employs musical notes associated with microtones and semi-microtones. By analyzing the usage of different musical notes, we can arrive at certain conclusions. For example, S and P notes are agreeable, while R1, G1, and M2 notes are disagreeable in relation to S. R2, G2, and M1 notes are free from disagreeability in relation to S. The emotions expressed by a Raga are the result of the different feelings expressed by the combination of the notes used.

This psychological basis is not present in Western music, where the stimulation of moods or feelings is exercised by the association of phrases of agreeable notes in parallel to the phrases of basic melody, or harmony. Different forms of musical compositions can be used to arouse different feelings. The stresses on the notes, the time factor used in different forms, the pitch of the notes, the distance between the notes, and the ornamental graces used in presentation of the notes are all factors that play a role.

For example, a Raga consisting of notes at longer distances can be used to express anger, and the melody should move faster to express it. The varieties or different forms of emotion may be aroused due to different situations in the state of mind. The reflex action on the face of a person in this situation will show the expression of the emotion.

In music, ‘Kampitam’ can be expressed by singing or by a musical instrument. It is the feature of trembling which is exhibited in ‘Kampitam’. When a person speaks in a situation of fear or terror he trembles. The same effect can be shown in musical interpretation. In the interpretation of ‘Kampitam’ musically, the notes used will have to be accompanied with tremlo effect.

The grace effect which shows the strength, courage, or heroism is known as the ‘Humpitam’. It is the ‘hum-hum’ roaring sound of a lion. Notes accompanied with this grace effect of ‘Humpitam’ will show the mood of strength, vigor, braveness, or heroism. The movement of sound in the situations of tremor, staccato, and linum can be shown diagrammatically.

There is a significant gap in research in this field. By conducting methodical and qualitative research, and quantifying the results, humanity can benefit greatly in addressing various health-related problems.

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