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Throatsinger

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Two of the most frequently used terms in the SH field are "harmonic" and "overtone." Are harmonics and overtones important to your practices and perspectives, and if so, why? Are they healing/magical/scientifically relevant, or what?
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RichG

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It's particularly effective when you combine the terms as "Harmonic Overtoning", or better yet, "Harmonic Overtone Vibrational Sound".... you know, to differentiate from all of that non-vibrational sound flying around - as well as the non-overtone harmonics. (Just a joke people! A semi-inside slightly dry musician's joke.... [rolleyes]  ...) 


Ok, a slightly more serious reply:
Harmonics and overtones are important to my practice in that I use them as part of my palette - one of many techniques or soundings I can call on to paint the whole picture with. And in this regard I am referring to vocal overtoning, which I am assuming you are referring to as well, since our gongs and metal bowls and flutes etc, etc, etc ALL produce rich harmonics and complex arrays of overtones. (Unless we are just working with pure sine waves or only crystal bowls, harmonics are important to our practices whether we realize it or not.)

Harmonics and overtones are just as healing and magical as any sounds have the potential to be. Again, not sure I can even separate them out from "other sounds" since all of the other sounds in my palette are rich with harmonics. There is a certain 'magic' in using them vocally in that there's a real potential there to engage a listener's attention and rapidly alter their state of mind.

Also, I mentioned the crystal bowls, which I have chosen not to use in my work. The richness of harmonics in metal Himalayan bowls is what sets them miles apart from the crystal bowls and their relatively small amount of harmonics, to my ears and mind anyway.


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Throatsinger

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Actually, I'm not referring specifically to vocalizing, but generally to the wider usage.

If we were to produce one of those word-clouds for all things sound healing, the words "harmonic" and "overtone" would likely be among the very largest. The words are omnipresent. Many, if not most of us, know what the words mean, in the usual acoustical/music theory senses. However, the traditional definitions of "harmonic" and "overtone" have no references or implications regarding any sort of therapeutic usage. In the SH world, they are buzzwords (no pun intended).

Clearly, such prodigious use of the terms, from describing roles (harmonic therapist) to names of associations to advertisements for performances and treatments, etc., indicates enormous significance to those using them. I'm interested in this phenomenon, what it means to those who use it, and why.

In a certain sense, saying that one finds harmonics and overtones important and practical is a bit like saying "I find that atoms and molecules come in handy." [wink]


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Gary Buchanan

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Reply with quote  #4 
Using natural harmonics, e.g., with the voice and musical instruments - analog sinusoidal waves - is the most immediate and practical form of sound healing, obviously.

However, there are more complex understandings in Wave Front BIOresonance, e.g., acoustical, Cymatic, geodetic, et al, that can further enhance healing potentials --- and not just on the psychological, but also physical, levels.

For example, we know that a single frequency has naturally occurring harmonics --- overtones, undertones, etc. Yet, if we use a combination of five frequencies (a concept of Synergetics explained by Fuller and Jenny), we may obtain a combined acoustical wave front that is strong, united, will not dissipate, and may therefore "entrain" parts of the body, centers, etc.

Further, if these several frequencies are "tuned' to a common fundamental, say, an infrasonic pulsation, then each tone will be harmonically "coherent" with the others - similar to the concept of using coherent light in therapies. In other words, by way of coherent tuning we may obtain substantially more effective sounds for healing. In terms of music theory, this means that ANY group of tones may be sounded together (even microtones) and not be "dissonant." Rather, the coherent harmonizations will sound and feel "consonant." This is a profound understanding in music - ANY tuning system from around the globe may be used with another - so long as there is a common infrasonic fundamental as the base-pulse-tone tuning.

Numerous ancient civilizations knew this principle, and it is how they constructed their healing chambers and temples, e.g., at Newgrange, Dendera, China, etc., in order to accommodate sound healing.

Thus, while overtone singing, using gongs and bowls, harps and tuning forks, etc. are the most natural and effective ways of healing with music/sound, there are even higher guiding principles that may be employed.

http://www.sonatherapy.com


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Throatsinger

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Gary, thanks for your thoughts and apologies for taking so long to respond. That said, I respectfully submit that your comments illustrate the issue as I see it:

GB: "Using natural harmonics, e.g., with the voice and musical instruments - analog sinusoidal waves - is the most immediate and practical form of sound healing, obviously."

I'm not so sure that is obvious. You present it as fact, why is it so? Also, "natural" (are there "unnatural" harmonics?" are not the same as pure sine waves, to me. Am I missing something?

GB: "For example, we know that a single frequency has naturally occurring harmonics --- overtones, undertones, etc."

A single frequency does not have overtones or undertones, but is a fundamental, with one harmonic and no overtones or undertones.

Gary, the paragraph beginning "Further..." is difficult for me to follow; please try to explain more clearly.

GB: "Numerous ancient civilizations knew this principle, and it is how they constructed their healing chambers and temples, e.g., at Newgrange, Dendera, China, etc., in order to accommodate sound healing."

These are interesting claims, and it's become common practice to make claims about "knowledge and practices of ancient peoples," but such claims require compelling evidence to be taken seriously. Usually, I find such evidence to be in very short supply... do you have some?

GB: "Thus, while overtone singing, using gongs and bowls, harps and tuning forks, etc. are the most natural and effective ways of healing with music/sound..."

I don't see that such a statement is accurate at all... again, common "or uncommon" sentiment or assumptions may be generally accepted, or not, but
why do you state this. What evidence or proof can you provide? Is it opinion, or a statement of fact, which again is subject to critical evaluation.

GB: "...there are even higher guiding principles that may be employed."

If the examples you cited are the most natural and effective means, then why employ such principles, and how are they higher? This seems contradictory to me.




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Gary Buchanan

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Reply with quote  #6 
Dear Steve,

Most of what I say here is backed up, not by just acoustical physics, but as made clear, with references, in my two books, SONA: Healing with Wave Front BIOresonance (2008) and Sonatherapy: Healing with Light, Color, Sound, Water & Subtle Energies (2012). Both available at http://www.sonatherapy.com/shop.

A single frequency, if naturally produced analog/sinusoidal wave, DOES have harmonics. This is a basic understanding in Cymatics. (See any of my You Tube "Sonatherapy" videos.) Similarly, when using music for healing, it has been demonstrated thousands of times that natural, live music is more effective than recorded or electronically manufactured. This is also a basic principle in Wave Front BIOresonance, as well as Music Therapy.

"Unnatural" harmonics are created all the time, e.g., with synthesizers, digital recordings, electromagnetic pollution in the home, etc.

Numerous researchers have studied the resonances and harmonics of ancient sites, e.g., John Reid in the Great Pyramid, others at Temple of Dendera, myself at sites in Britain, Peru, etc. There are many understandings about this subject --- some of which are also discussed in my books. For example, the standard resonance in myriad kivas, chambers, temples, etc. is 90-110 Hz, with harmonics, the endorphin producing range. The standard unit of measurement, for both building stones and overall geometry, is the Megalythic Yard, which also ties in with the speed of both sound and light. Pretty well known subject since about 30 years back. The hundreds of bells built, say, during the Confucian period followed these laws of acoustics and harmonics. (Also in my books.)

I detect a lack of belief here, on your part, in regard to naturally produced sounds, over-tone singing, etc. Not sure why. One session with a Tibetan throat singer should help clarify the reality of these approaches.

And, yes, there are "higher guiding principles" to be considered in sound healing, such as photons and phonon in gluons (Quantum Physics), and the idea that we have energetic fields surrounding the entity, etc. All I can say is that one should look into these areas and perhaps learn about them.

Finally, while naturally produced sounds and music are, in documented instances, the most effective and psychologically powerful media, in Sonatherapy, for example, we do create electronic sounds (analog) in combinations proven by Peter Guy Manners and others to contain harmonics and resonances (Cymatics/Synergetics) that can be more effective in addressing specific physiological conditions.

Gary





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RichG

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Reply with quote  #7 

Interesting discussion.
Just a comment:
Steve in fact is a highly accomplished overtone or harmonic singer (including 'throat singing'), with some particular knowledge and study with Siberian practices. Beyond that, I won't even begin to think I can speak for him, and I've probably already erred in my description. From both sides of the discussion I just find it useful and interesting to note this.


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Throatsinger

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GB: "A single frequency, if naturally produced analog/sinusoidal wave, DOES have harmonics. This is a basic understanding in Cymatics. (See any of my You Tube "Sonatherapy" videos.) Similarly, when using music for healing, it has been demonstrated thousands of times that natural, live music is more effective than recorded or electronically manufactured. This is also a basic principle in Wave Front BIOresonance, as well as Music Therapy."

For starters, it's my understanding that there are NO naturally occurring pure tones (sine waves); for that matter it is impossible to listen to such waves as any current means of production or playback produces some harmonic distortion, which can be measured. However, more to the point, sine waves have no harmonics other than the fundamental; no overtones, "undertones," etc. This is by definition.

"Unnatural" harmonics are created all the time, e.g., with synthesizers, digital recordings, electromagnetic pollution in the home, etc.

I understand, but would not use those terms.

GB: "Numerous researchers have studied the resonances and harmonics of ancient sites, e.g., John Reid in the Great Pyramid, others at Temple of Dendera, myself at sites in Britain, Peru, etc. There are many understandings about this subject --- some of which are also discussed in my books. For example, the standard resonance in myriad kivas, chambers, temples, etc. is 90-110 Hz, with harmonics, the endorphin producing range. The standard unit of measurement, for both building stones and overall geometry, is the Megalythic Yard, which also ties in with the speed of both sound and light. Pretty well known subject since about 30 years back. The hundreds of bells built, say, during the Confucian period followed these laws of acoustics and harmonics. (Also in my books.)"

Of course, I'm aware of these theories, but there is a difference between theories and facts. And of course, acoustical ideas weren't unknown, and were considered in building (and large, hard structures are naturally going to produce reverberant effects). I'm quite interested about the 90-110Hz range in regards to endorphins, if you'd kindly elaborate.

GB: "I detect a lack of belief here, on your part, in regard to naturally produced sounds, over-tone singing, etc. Not sure why. One session with a Tibetan throat singer should help clarify the reality of these approaches."

Heh, funny you shoud go there. Your skepticism detector is functioning properly. [wink] Now, not to split hairs but if you are referring to Tibetan Buddhist monks, they generally aren't referred to as throat-singers. The term is usually applied to the traditions from Tuva, Mongolia, other parts of the Altai-Sayan region of central Asia, and other pockets around the world.

I have been deeply involved in throat-singing, at a professional level as a performer, recording artist and teacher for decades, and feel fairly qualified to address this notion. I've studied with native shamans and chanted with monks. The belief that their vocalizations are intended for healing, in the way usually claimed by foreigners, sound healers, new-agers, etc., are simply not part of their cultural perspective, no matter how many times this is cited. The same applies to didgeridoos (which I play and use), and many other instruments.

GB: "And, yes, there are "higher guiding principles" to be considered in sound healing, such as photons and phonon in gluons (Quantum Physics), and the idea that we have energetic fields surrounding the entity, etc. All I can say is that one should look into these areas and perhaps learn about them."

My own perspective is that the while the physical body indeed does produce an energy field that extends beyond the skin, which is well known and can be measured, the more important reality is that the body is a physical construct of consciousness/energy, rather than the opposite. While this greatly influences my own approach, I make no "scientific" claims in this regard. In its current state, this is outside the domain of science.

Also, I must add that I tend to get very skeptical when sound healers start using terms and justifications from quantum physics and higher mathematics, a feeling strongly reinforced by discussions with physicists.

GB: "Finally, while naturally produced sounds and music are, in documented instances, the most effective and psychologically powerful media, in Sonatherapy, for example, we do create electronic sounds (analog) in combinations proven by Peter Guy Manners and others to contain harmonics and resonances (Cymatics/Synergetics) that can be more effective in addressing specific physiological conditions."

Gary


While this is all very interesting, and no doubt fertile ground for meaningful exploration in other discussions, many of these points again illustrate what I see as a major problem in the SH world: The substitution of various claims as justification for related practices, rather than truly developing (or expressing) an understanding of whether or not harmonics/overtones are important in the ways so often claimed, and if so, why. Let's get back to the topic.



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Gary Buchanan

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Reply with quote  #9 

Okay, basics. Any sound wave/frequency is a combination of phonons/pressure waves. These oscillate in parts, i.e., halves, thirds (fifths above/fourths below), 5ths, 6ths, 7ths, etc. In any medium, e.g., air, water, metal, woods, et al, the phonons gather together and produce molecular build-ups, e.g., oscillons, bosons, solitons, ad infinitum. In other words, there is no such thing as a "pure" fundamental. The phonon chains must interact with the environment. Add to this, any deviations in propagation, e.g., amplitude, density, temperature, Doppler interfaces, et alia will similarly produce additional harmonics. When we play a single frequency in a dish of water we immediately observe the secondary and tertiary harmonics in the fluid, as well as the invisible torsion/spiralic patterns taking place in the background --- carrying, say, dust particles, etc.

Modern physicists like Claude Swanson have researched and published on these observable patterns and hidden torsion fields. Prof. Gerald Pollack has similarly demonstrated such phenomena in 4th-phase water.  There are lots of scientists now looking into these things and documenting lab studies. Subtle energies are involved, along with measurable affects upon EM fields, speed of light, biophoton discharge, et alia. So, it is not just a theory that sound has demonstrable potentials not generally recognized.

I see that you have long experience with harmonic singing! My experience has been working with/listening to Tuva singers, Ainu mouth singers, Shinto masters in Japan (Kotodama), Peruvian shamans, Australian aborigines in Queensland, and within my own Cherokee heritage in N.C. Many of these folks DO use harmonic singing for healing, and I believe the tradition goes way back in time, certainly among the early Essene-Christians, for example, who used the Aramaic codes, which probably went back to the ancient pre-Ubaid civilizations, Tibet, northern India, even the Ukrainian and Siberian shamans of later periods, as well as Altai-Sayan regions.

I am NOT a good singer, btw. Just have a full background in music (DMA Composition/Conducting).

So, musically, and scientifically, these are not "theories," per se, but supply the rudiments of the arts, sciences, and technologies we have been developing since 1975, now brought together in Sonatherapy, which we consider the only "true medicine of the future." To say that these principles, case studies, compiled research of dozens of medical and scientific colleagues are not "real" is surely the general attitude, and problematical.

As for the endorphin range - yes, most sites studied have these resonances. The medium pitch is generally 96 Hz --- used in lots of new sound technologies, as well as repetitive Trans Cranial Electro-Magnetic Stimulation (rTMS).

96 Hz is also the basic, Cymatic/Synergetic, pulse-tone tuning for the pitch "G." This frequency, and its harmonic resonances (sixth octave of base pulse 1.5 Hz, Abrams' Universal Healing Rate), speaks directly to the heart/chest area, and is particularly effective in therapies for lung conditions, heart palpitations, asthma, bronchitis, even impinged nerves around T-5, for example. Within the A = 432 Hz tuning system it fits in nicely, as well. There is a great deal more that could be said on this tuning, but not enough room herein to do so.

Also worked with the didgeridoo, btw.

The energy fields of the body have been long studied, not just in recent history, of course. In Sonatherapy we can prove these exist by simply listening to them with applicators over the body - using a Sonation specially designed to produce harmonics and amplitudes when crossing through them. We do this in coordination with filters - Orange and Lime Angstrom counts. This allows us to not only hear the anomalies, but with proper lighting also see swirls and patterns in the light/sound combinations within the fields, around the various force centers, acupoints, meridians, et al. All this is in my books and within the global Training Course we make available to therapists situated around the globe. All of them take this new technology quite seriously. Also, important - we are completely non-profit, which few New Age sound healers can claim.

I got into all of this 41 years ago! Why? because I went to sound healing conferences, seminars, read all the paperbacks, and was really put off by the nonsense they espouse! There IS an underlying science, a Consciousness, along with genuine concerns that must be taken into account. If a client comes in for a session, we want to address the REAL conditions and find ways to ameliorate pain and suffering. This cannot be done easily with tuning forks, singing bowls, gongs, and chanting. Although, I use all of these, as well! Along with lots of other "toys."

Yes, the body has physical constructs of consciousness and energy, and the key is learning how to interface with those fields. But, there are also higher fields. This must be accepted. We view the physical (3-D) entity as a "devolved" form of this higher Consciousness, say, the fourth-dimensional entity (4-D) --- generally called the "psychic." We see that 4-D entity as a devolved form of the 5-D Light Body. All of these fields can be seen and heard by trained adepts. These fields are also linked with solar energy Information Factors, now posited and to great extent proven within Quantum Physics. So, in my thinking, none of this is "outside the domain of science." To the contrary, it is the BEST domain of science, as it deals with true phenomena rather than intellect, or popular opinions.

I would suggest folks need to understand Fuller's "mathematics," the concept of the entire Consciousness, Being, Intellect, and Form of the entity being greater than its parts. Also the work of people like James Oschmann, Karl Maret, and others who not only supply proof of the phenomena discussed, but with developed approaches that are actually helping and healing people.

Skepticism of quantum principles and the subtle energies may easily be resolved in the lab when working with Cymatics. We know, from well established science, that the greatest sources of "vital life" energies are, in order, sunlight (light/color/photons), sound (phonon)s, air (aether), water, and "sacred geometry" (archetypes). When producing Cymatic videos in the studio we are working with all of these elements, and the healing energies can actually become overwhelming. Moreover, the observations  then inform us when treating people in Sonatherapy..

Therefore, in terms of "SH," all of these elements ARE related and should be taken into account. "Harmonics," coherency, holistic environmental relationships, are clearly linked with sound healing - are capable of expanding the effectiveness and comprehension of what's actually happening.

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RichG

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Reply with quote  #10 

Hi Gary, thank you for your extensive replies.

Something that I get a bit hung up on though - you say:
"overtone singing, using gongs and bowls, harps and tuning forks, etc. are the most natural and effective ways of healing with music/sound"

But then you also say "If a client comes in for a session, we want to address the REAL conditions and find ways to ameliorate pain and suffering. This cannot be done easily with tuning forks, singing bowls, gongs, and chanting."

There seems to be contradiction between those two statements. Could you explain how they are not actually contradictory?
And what I am really wanting to get at is, if those stated tools and methods are in fact "the most natural and effective ways of healing with music/sound", why then are the desired actions of addressing the "real conditions" in your second statement NOT "done easily with tuning forks, singing bowls, gongs, and chanting." (Those same most natural and effective tools.)

I realize that many novice so-called "sound healers" seem to think they can just buy some gongs or bowls or tuning forks and simply hit them and now magically they are healing people with sound, but on the other hand I think some if not many of us here on this forum very much are concerned with taking into account consciousness and an active concern for addressing "real conditions" etc, and at least some of us have been working with this for quite some time, multiple decades in fact. As of yet, I am failing to understand why one needs your Sonatherapy methods to address these things more easily and effectively than some of us do with gongs, bowls, voice, drum many other instruments etc. and our respective trainings, practices and experiences with the realms of consciousness and cultivations of our attunements and perceptions.

I am not criticizing your work, just trying to get a better understanding of what you are saying and what you believe and have experienced and are offering through your work.
Thanks in advance for your further thoughts. I think they will help a number of us here in getting a better understanding of your work and what you are attempting to share with us.


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Gary Buchanan

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Reply with quote  #11 
Yes, naturally produced sounds are more easily accepted by the body and its fields. Analog sound, sinusoidal waves, are absorbed. So, in healing environments, such as hospital rooms, one might bring in a harpist, for example.

We spent seven years developing a unit that can produce natural analog (not digital) sound, accurate to four decimal places, combining multiple frequencies, stereo, capable of infrasonic pulsation, etc.

"Real" healing can take many forms. For example, in general pleasing sounds and music can do a great deal, e.g., to calm the nerves and psyche, allow consciousness to refocus on areas of need, etc.

However, if one has, say, gout in the foot, then that is not at all easily treated with tuning forks, singing bowls, or someone singing to the foot. We would use an acoustic foot bath, with transducers underneath, so that Sonations surround the foot and ankles, traveling 4.3 times faster in geothermal water, carrying the phonons directly into the person's vicinal waters, tendons, veins, muscles, bones, et al. Uric acid crystals are broken up and circulated out of the foot, swelling and edema are reduced, nerves are calmed, tendons and muscles relaxed, and the gout is gone in about 45 minutes!

If we wish to help detox the liver, then we place applicators around that organ and similarly remove toxins, stimulate cell regeneration, etc. These kinds of entrainments cannot so easily be accomplished with musical instruments or the voice, see?

So, there is a time for music, naturally produced sounds in the environment that may be absorbed by the person; but, in many, many cases we need to focus more directly - again, with analog natural sound, but so the basic physiological problem may be addressed.

We have hundreds of case studies showing that Sonatherapy actually does work.

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Throatsinger

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Gary, I've taken a few days to look into your claims and statements, including extensive checking with others more experienced in various fields. Unfortunately, I must say that to me they seem to exhibit many of the issues that I find so problematic in the SH community: A heavy reliance on pseudo-science, pseudo-history, pseudo-anthropology and pseudo-archeology, with questionable interpretations, while not really addressing the original question, all presented in a torrent that makes evaluation a chore. And all of it appears to be in the service of marketing expensive products and training.


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Well, all I can say in defense of Sonatherapy and what WE are trying to accomplish is (1) all that we have done, since 1975, is NON-PROFIT; (2) the units and applicators we have designed, manufactured, and tried to make available are the least expensive and best designed/most effective among any others; (3) everything we are doing is based not only on good and proven SCIENCE, but is backed up by hundreds of documented CASE STUDIES, along with thousands of bioresonances proven effective - many published in our thick BOOKS; (4) our Cymatic healing videos have garnered over 1/2 million views, all for FREE, on You Tube and linked sites; (5) large numbers of people who view those contact us and say they have been helped; (6) Sonatherapy students and practitioners are located around the globe with many opening clinics, especially in Japan; (7) our research, documentation, and creation of new analog Sonations are ongoing; (8) and, as the true "medicine of the future," this more direct and holistic approach has to be experienced, if one is to make some kind of judgment about it. Just theorizing, or relying upon general perceptions and opinions, is not really helpful to those who wish to take Sound Healing where it needs to go. I supposed we should just bring to a halt 41 years of devoted work and training, because some may believe it cannot possibly be true or correct? This therapy is NOT "pseudo-science" or wishful metaphysics, unlike most of what is going on out there.
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Gary Buchanan

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Reply with quote  #14 
Just so all others know - we self-publish everything, in books with hundreds of color illustrations, and add in free shipping, which can run up to hundreds of dollars in some foreign countries. We print/produce, bind, manufacture discs, videos, DVDs, units and applicators (with Adam Reed in Oregon), create materials for the Training Course and tutor students online, etc. right here at Steamboat Healing Center in Nevada. It is an ongoing undertaking everyday, with some of us working as therapists at the center, as well, lecturing abroad, and all that takes a great deal of time and money to keep it all going! Thus, comments deriding our efforts, or that suggest we are somehow "profiting" from this philanthropic and education outreach, are not helpful. I, personally, receive NO remuneration for anything we do --- all funding goes to The Music Guild (to pay for production) and to Steamboat Healing Center (to pay for the treatment facilities there). There IS a sense of urgency in what we do --- because if we are going to learn about and take REAL sound healing forward, it is essential we seek out the best understandings, document our findings, and make developed concepts and tools available to others, soon as possible, within the global SH community. Where will it all lead? We'll see. I only ask that people look into what we have found and are accomplishing before dismissing an approach that could replace, to large extent - not all, traditional allopathic practices.

The original subject was "harmonics" in sound healing. There is a great deal more to "harmony" than suspected.
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Throatsinger

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Reply with quote  #15 
Gary, all that sounds good. And I have no problem with folks profiting from their work and products. But in a forum setting, I'd like to think, (perhaps naively) that explanations might be shared openly rather than directing participants to a page where they can purchase expensive products so they can better understand. Also, it should be obvious by looking at society that the length of time that one has been involved in something, and how many units have been sold have little bearing on actual quality or value.

There is a big difference between critically examining one's claims and supporting evidence and one's sincerity and motives. However, since a number of people with considerable experience have shared the same impressions with me, you may wish to consider how you present your points. And maybe skip the dubious historical stuff and some of the other cultural stuff, like the vocal overtoning from different cultures. When I see "evidence" presented in my areas of expertise that is clearly questionable at best, it leads me to question the validity of other info.

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