Posts in Sound
Sage

We draw the elements of soundwork from sage. Namely its qualities - cleansing, mental clarity, and revival of the senses. Here’s an introduction.

Quality and historic uses

Sage (Salvia officinalis) is a perennial herb in the mint family. It has aromatic greyish-green leaves, and blue to purple flowers.

The Romans considered the herb to be sacred and had special ceremonies for harvesting it. Arab doctors in the 10th Century believed that sage promoted immortality. The herbalist John Gerard wrote in 1597 that sage “is singularly good for the head and brain, and quickeneth the nerves and memory.” Another herbalist, Nicholas Culpeper agreed - describing its “excellent use to help the memory, warming and quickening the senses.”

The Indigenous practice of smudging

For the last few years, the energetic cleansing practice of the Native/Indigenous Americans - smudging with ceremonial white sage or “saging” - has become popularly gentrified. Smudging is where you burn a bundle of dried plants and let the smoke waft over the person, object or space that you are cleansing or protecting. The smoke attaches to any negative energy, and carries it away.

The major issue with adopting this (insanely instagrammable) practice is due to the exploitation of both the plant and the cultural practice. Concerns have consistently been raised about the cultural appropriation, as well as the fact the plant has to be protected now that it’s at risk due to commercial harvesting.

Incorporating into your practice

Firstly, consider whether you need to burn ceremonial white sage in your smudging practice. It is easy to make your own smudge sticks with other plants (for example - locally grown mugworts, rosemary, or another type of sage).

If you are using white sage, burn just 1 stem at a time - rather than the whole bundle. It’s also just a lot more practical, as the smoke is not nearly so overwhelming when you burn single leaves.

Or you could come along to one of our sound baths. Our crystal singing bowls are specially made from pure quartz crystals infused with sage (in the manufacturing process). We also have our own Field of Sound scent incorporating sage, which is used each session. Our intention is to draw on the qualities of sage outlined above - cleansing, mental clarity and revival of the senses - and weave it into the vibrations.

 
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SoundCari Lin
Supplementary Practices

MOVEMENT

We recommend a movement practice alongside sound meditation. A mixture of vigorous movement and slower, long-held poses can help to integrate and further the benefits of sound meditation.

In a meditation practice, thoughts (often with a lot of energy behind them) can come up. Sometimes the energetics behind the thoughts demand to be felt before they can be released. They may even reside in a physical part of the body, and can be (without delving into the stories) released with conscious movement. This is why conscious movement plays a profound role in the process of self discovery and exploration.

CLEANSE

One of the reasons people are drawn to the practice of sound meditation is the cleansing quality of the sound and vibrations. It allows us to remember who we are, underneath the layers of stories. A practical way to illuminate your inner life is by cleansing, tidying and distilling the essentials in your outer life - this can include the objects, experiences, and diet.

REST

Many people experience a reset from our sound baths. Like having too many tabs open in your browser, and just having to do a restart by turning it off and on again.

How do you maintain this, besides adopting our sound baths as a modern ritual? Try to create the space for rest.

Even when it comes to rest, we ask - “How do I do that?” Often, we only speak of rest in terms of how it will improve productivity. It’s true that we need to slow down in order to speed up again. It’s also true that there are scenery and experiences that we only notice, when we move at a slower pace.

BREATHWORK

Connecting to the breath is a profound way to gain access to a healthy mind. Whether that is identifying limiting beliefs, negative thought patterns, or neutralising the unending stream of thoughts that are symptomatic of an anxious or over-active mind.

However, just like a physical practice - what you don’t know can hurt you. That is why we do not recommend embarking on breathwork practice without proper guidance. There are techniques that can be practiced safely up to a point. For example, alternative nostril breathing (anuloma vilom) is very beneficial to balance the body and mind. Yet, there are teachers who specify a particular count of breaths in a public class, without knowing the capacity of each student. This leads to straining, and only introduces even more unhealthy breathing patterns. It can often be arbitrary or taken from books, rather than true knowledge of this subtle practice.

SoundCari Lin
Creativity

In a world where our minds are pulled in numerous directions, we can sometimes find ourselves disconnected from the creative source. Often our rigorous schedules and responsibilities take priority over tuning in to how we can nurture our creative mindset.

If this feels somewhat familiar, then a sound bath might provide the space for creative self-exploration. 

In our sound baths, you are guided into a meditative state by sound vibrations. The benefits of meditation are already well-documented, but many individuals believe they are incapable of meditation or sitting still. Quieting the mind may even seem counter-intuitive to the process of ideation.

In this setting, you begin in a state of relaxed wakefulness. Whilst lying down, your attention is directed to your sensory perceptions. The soundwork induces a regenerative state for the body, while you are taken into progressively quieter brainwave states. Your conscious awareness is guided by the sonic vibrations into a realm beyond waking, dreaming or sleeping - beyond the reach of the logical, analytical, and critical thinking mind.

As a sound bath allows you to disconnect from outside distractions, you naturally dive into a deeper awareness. As our body relaxes, we’re able to tune in to ideas, inspiration and a sense of wonder. During the sound meditation, we may begin to have access to the infinite space between thoughts, and perhaps bring this awareness into our lives.

Some benefits of sound baths include alleviating symptoms of stress, tension, and anxiety - freeing you to naturally enter into a state of creative flow. 

By creating space in our mind, we can delve into untapped potential and direct our cerebral energy in a way that supports creativity.

As we find inner stillness, we foster clarity.

SoundCari Lin