Life can get chaotic. No wonder a lot of us look for activities to keep them sane. Gong baths are one of these stress-buster pastimes.
Before you envision yourself relaxing in a tub, please know that no water is involved in gong bath meditation.
The bath is entirely symbolic of the sound waves that will surround you.
Table of Contents
What is Gong Bath?
Gong baths are full-body listening activities that use sound to nurture the mind and body.
The powerful and restorative sound and vibrations of gongs are ancient and potent tools.
It is used to still the mind, which brings about deep physical relaxation and reduces anxiety.
Shamans and other healers have been using sound therapy as healing tools throughout the ages.
Techniques include chanting, gongs, drums, and Tibetan bowls, among others. It may be an ancient practice of healing but is growing in popularity.
It is not just used as a meditative and healing practice anymore but also as a wind-down after intensive fitness classes.
The process starts with participants lying down under a blanket. Some will stay seated as they find that position works best for them.
Before the actual sound session starts, there will be a few minutes of breathing exercises or mantra chanting. The gongs and other sound healing tools will get introduced gradually.
As you sink further and further into the gong bath, your brain waves will slow. You may even experience a dreamlike state where you can unplug from external stimuli.
The best way to understand sound baths is to experience it. It is hard to describe other than to say it leaves you feeling you full of energy and has notable healing effects.
What Does a Gong Bath Feel Like?
People can have a range of experiences; it is unique to each gong bather. Some have reported seeing visions, experiencing epiphanies, and finding solutions to problems.
Gong meditation quiets the brain, and in the stillness, you may get inspired, come up with new ideas, or undergo spiritual breakthroughs.
Certain people cry others laugh, and some may feel scared or angry. Physically, people experience shaking or twitching due to intense vibrations. This is a clearing of energy.
The diversity of experiences is the reason why a lot of people write down their thoughts after sound therapy.
Individuals have described:
- Deep relaxation where they are aware of their surroundings but unable to hold thoughts.
- A floaty or dreamy state where images and memories pass through their minds.
- Moments of clarity and insight about life events.
- Seeing colors and hearing sounds develop from the vibrations of the instruments.
- Experience a deep sleep-like state.
- Feeling energy move.
But why does gong meditation have such profound effects?
To keep it brief, the sounds made by the various instruments don’t have a tune our minds can follow.
As the mind gives up, it enters into the theta stage – a level of consciousness linked with deep meditation.
What are the Benefits of Gong Meditation?
A lot of mindfulness meditation techniques use sound as their focus instead of breath.
As with meditation, where the breath is the anchor, being mindful of sound also requires a balance between awareness and relaxation.
Anxiety, anger, and trauma all have a negative impact on us. This can manifest not just emotionally but on a physical, mental, and spiritual level too.
With gong meditation, your body restores harmony throughout; in a sense, it is ‘tuned’ like a guitar.
Gong meditation is a rejuvenating process. It brings about an overall sense of relaxation that reduces anxiety and makes it easier for you to cope with stress.
A sound bath can also remove any emotional blockages caused by trauma, which will encourage overall contentment.
Having a gong bath can help ease or cure the following:
- Negative emotions
It is used for emotional and physical healing through:
- Improved memory
- Better sleep
- Overall stability
- Healthy immune system
- Heightened mindfulness
- Enhanced creativity
Let’s delve deeper into why a gong bath works.
Everything vibrates, even you at the present moment. The frequency of the vibrations is the only difference. There is even a difference in the frequency of various organs!
When one part of you is ill, it creates discord. Imagine an orchestra with one instrument out of tune; it won’t sound great, will it?
Anxiety, anger, trauma, and other negative aspects of your environment can increase dis-ease. This can manifest physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually.
With gong meditation, you can retune your body to work in harmony again.
The body wants to heal. It instinctively knows which frequency to sync to. Through gong meditation, you are providing the right sound to return to a state of harmony.
Our brainwaves fluctuate, but through entrainment, we can synchronize our brainwaves. We entrain to pulses and beats around us all the time since our bodies contain an autonomic mechanism to do so.
Of course, we’re not aware of this process but can influence it through practices like gong baths.
With a strong and solid frequency that our brains can match, we can clear away any discord.
Gong Sound Therapy and Healing
As mentioned, sound healing has various positive effects. Gong baths reduce stress, encourage altered states of consciousness, and rejuvenates the body.
Below are some stages you may go through and how each can benefit you.
Visions can take you on a journey that may expand your awareness, which may, in turn, lead to a breakdown of walls caused by trauma.
As you move your attention away from all noise, you may experience creative problem-solving. It’s best to have a journal to write down the solutions presented during your gong meditation.
Emotions also vibrate, and if our feelings are out of tune, the overall harmony of our bodies suffer. Sound meditation penetrates your emotions and can lead to a sense of relief and total bliss.
During a gong bath, your body will vibrate to the point of shaking. You can imagine it as a type of exfoliation on a muscular level.
The strength of the sound waves will scrape away stress and tension and activate stagnant energies.
It is clear that sound therapy has a lot of benefits. Since it is such a personal experience, you should go and try it for yourself!