Singing bowls are well known for their calming, soothing sounds. They are commonly used for sound therapy, meditation, and as an alternative form of treatment for chronic illnesses and conditions such as depression, anxiety, stress, and post-traumatic stress disorder. Let’s learn more about how singing bowls can help you relax and meditate and how to pick singing bowls for beginners.
Known as a Tibetan singing bowl or crystal singing bowl, these calming instruments originated somewhere around 500 BCE when they were used in monasteries for religious purposes and in Buddhism. They were used in chants, meditation, prayers, and other practices and were common throughout Nepal, Tibet, and India.
As singing bowls grew in popularity, their use spread throughout Asia and around the world, where they are used during yoga practice, chakra healing, meditation practice, and bringing about deep relaxation.
Large singing bowls were offered other practical uses, such as storing dried foods and grains, while a smaller bowl is ideal for serving food. In some religious practices, handmade singing bowls were used to perform funeral rites and offerings and to worship or honor ancestors.
How Singing Bowls Are Used Today
There are different ways to use singing bowls, which have become popular and widespread due to their calming, soothing tones. The best singing bowls are made of quality materials and produce a robust vibration, typically used in sound therapy or a “sound bath” to treat mental health conditions and support relaxation and meditation.
This form of sound healing is often incorporated into soothing music and background sounds alongside gentle waterfalls, rain, or a breeze.
While there are many benefits associated with singing bowls, they are also widely used for purifying and cleansing the mind, body, and soul. They provide vibrations that offer healing energies, which can improve emotional and mental health while calming the mind and easing worries.
How to Use a Singing Bowl for Deep Meditation and Other Practices
Sound vibrations are created in singing bowls by striking them with a mallet or similar device. The striking is done on the side of the bowl, where vibrations occur through friction, which creates musical notes. This sound healing instrument creates beautiful tones that resonate in our bodies, chakras, also known as energy fields.
Changing the pressure or speed at which you apply the mallet or striker will alter the sounds produced with any singing bowl, so you can hear and benefit from its effects long after you stop playing.
If you’re new to using a singing bowl, there are several easy ways to begin playing it, requiring a rubber, wooden mallet, or striker.
- Strike the side of the singing bowl with a wooden mallet, which produces a high-pitched tone, whereas a rubber mallet offers a gentler, softer tone
- When you strike the bowl, do so in a gentle manner so that the bowl doesn’t crack or break
- Before you strike the singing bowl, place it on a soft, supportive surface, such as a cushion or mat, to keep it steady. You can also hold it in one hand, which is ideal for smaller bowls, and strike gently with the other hand
- Ensure no rings, metal objects, ornaments, or similar items can interfere with the clear, clean sound made with a beautiful singing bowl
- Another method of using a singing bowl is by drawing or stirring circles around the bowl, which can take a bit of practice. This circling of the singing bowl many times will make it “sing” and create a stronger, longer-lasting tone
While a new singing bowl may take a while to get accustomed to using, once you use it frequently, you’ll create grooves inside the mallet, which gives you an easier grip when you use the stirring method or create therapeutic tones.
As your singing bowl ages, the tone will soften, and you’ll notice a different but equally powerful sound quality that’s mellower and comforting. When you strike and circle the bowl with the mallet, you’ll find that with enough practice, you’ll improve the bowl’s singing, which will also provide greater benefits for emotional and mental relaxation and stability.
Selecting the Best Singing Bowls for Beginners
Many singing bowls are available, including various sizes, designs, shapes, and kits created specifically for beginners. It’s best to start with a sturdy, simple singing bowl, even a handmade singing bowl made with high-quality materials. A small or medium-sized metal bowl is ideal, especially if you’re learning to play sound healing instruments for the first time.
While ornate quartz crystal bowls or Himalayan bowls are beautifully designed and appealing, it’s best to invest in a smooth, simple bowl that’s machine-made and comes with a mallet. These beginner singing bowls are not only easier to use, but they are also less expensive and provide everything you need to get acquainted with the practice.
Singing bowl kits are designed to give beginners an affordable way to tap into the healing benefits of sound therapy so that you can improve your ability before using a more detailed or fragile crystal singing bowl.
The Benefits of Singing Bowls
You’ll find that singing bowls offer incredible benefits for your mental and physical health. They are often used with various other practices, including yoga, meditation, Reiki, and massage.
Singing bowls release a build-up of stress and tension by clearing and relaxing the mind. They can also relieve the symptoms of serious chronic illnesses and pain, improve blood pressure, reduce negative thoughts and feelings, and increase blood flow throughout the body.
Singing bowls are also used in chakra healing and to pinpoint one or more of the seven chakras to treat the body, including the root chakra with a C note, the heart chakra with an F note, the crown chakra with a B note, and so on.
By achieving specific tunings and vibrations, you can create frequencies that target chakras and aid in healing. Chakra healing, or cleansing, is a popular way to use singing bowls and meditation to clear the mind and reduce anger and negative sensations related to stress and anxiety.
Overall, singing bowls create an environment of peace and balance, ideal just before sleep or when you meditate in the evening. Practicing regularly will improve your ability to manage stress, improve happiness, your immune system’s function, and sleep better.
Singing bowls are also used to cleanse crystals, often used in conjunction with meditation and healing practices to ease the adverse effects of mental and emotional issues.
Tips and Suggestions for Your New Singing Bowl
As you get acquainted with the benefits of using your singing bowl and the various striking and playing techniques, it’s essential to get the most out of your experience.
Singing bowl meditation is one of the best ways to enjoy the soothing therapy of this sound-healing instrument. It’s essential to keep the following in mind when you start to practice:
- Find the proper mallet and mat or cushion to play the singing bowl to enhance your experience. You can experiment with a smaller or larger bowl, various mallet sizes, mats, and cushions
- Take your time, and be patient, especially if you don’t find the sound initially good or you’re having difficulty enjoying its effects. It takes practice and effort, with various techniques, including speed of circling, pressure, and other attributes, to make it work
- Ensure you’re in a calm, relaxed space with minimal distractions, so you can focus on using the bowl and getting the most out of it
Singing bowls are therapeutic instruments that offer amazing benefits for your mind, body, and soul. It’s crucial to find the proper techniques, notes, and vibrations that give you a sense of peace and healing.
You may find that different techniques come naturally to you initially, while others take longer to improve. Once you become comfortable and enjoy the singing bowl’s healing potential, you’ll find it’s ideal for meditation, healing, and comfort.