To complement the MASSAGE Magazine article, “Energy Work for Today’s Massage Therapist: Polarity Therapy,” by Laura Allen, in the September 2011 issue. Article summary: Polarity therapy is based on the teachings of Randolph Stone, D.O., D.C. Stone meditated daily and sought spiritual enlightenment, which he found in 1945 when he read Mysticism the Spiritual Path, Volume 11, by Lekh Raj Puri. Stone felt it was just the philosophy he had been looking for, and it was all about energy—how everything is based on energy and how it can be used for spiritual growth.
by Ellen F. Franklin
The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) classifies the use of sound and music as a mind-body intervention, recognizing that health and well-being is facilitated through the use of specific sounds, music, and instruments.
However, the use of sound with intention predates NCCAM. It is deeply embedded in many of the world’s cosmologies, creation stories and ancient medical models. It is considered one of the oldest forms of healing. We listen to sound with more than just our ears; we experience its vibratory structure and resonance on a deep cellular level. Sound permeates our entire being.
From distant galaxies to our own solar system to the smallest particles on Earth, everything in the universe vibrates. We live and move in vibrations, and vibrations are contained within us. A simple way to understand the powerful efficacy of working with sound is to reflect for a moment on the ways in which you use music in your clinical practice, or how you feel when surrounded by loud noises, such as a car with a bad muffler or a jackhammer. Many practitioners already employ music as a way to facilitate relaxation. At the gym, a hard driving rock beat is used to propel you forward, and get your heart rate pumping. This is a highly simplified explanation of the way we experience music and sound on both a physiological and psychological level.
One of the reasons we are so quickly impacted by sound vibration is our body is nearly 80 percent water. Sound travels four times faster in water than in air, making the human body a natural resonator. Our organs, bones, muscles and tissue have their own resonant frequency and are impacted by sound vibration.
Some sounds and rhythms are used to sooth and others may be used to break up old patterns or stagnant energy. Joshua Leeds, author of the Power of Sound, cites numerous research studies that demonstrate the efficacy of sound and music to help us be healthier and more productive, enhance learning, reduce stress, speed recovery in hospital settings and improve cognitive function.
My own work with sound is rooted in Asian medicine, contemporary science and depth psychology. The methodology I use applies tuning forks to specific acupressure points, trigger points and points of pain. The sound waves of the forks travel deeply into the body along energy pathways, affecting human physiology. Their rich resonance and vibration connects with and supports the body’s natural frequencies, stimulates and balances the body’s physical and subtle energy field, and promotes wellness, deep inner harmony, well-being and homeostasis.
Connecting body, mind and soul in the journey toward optimal health, harmonic attunement or at-one-ment with all things in the universe.
Through work with sound vibration you come to recognize the greater whole—each and every single one of us—each and every single thing is an integral part of the great theme —created within nature and a part of nature—as above so below, as within so without, there is a deep connection between each of us and the greater universe, that is facilitated by work with sound.
Ellen F. Franklin is CEO of the Kairos Institute of Sound Healing. She is a co-developer of the Acutonics® Certification Program, an in-depth methodology for the application of sound vibration to acupressure points, trigger points and points of pain, which are approved for continuing education for massage and body work practitioners. For more information, visit www.acutonics.com.