This week, we’re thinking about how music impacts the mind. Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, humanitarian, spiritual leader and an ambassador of peace, captured it pretty well:
Ever notice when you change your music it can completely switch up your mood? Feeling slow or sluggish? Play something upbeat! Tired but can’t fall asleep? Try binaural beats. Need to focus? There are entire genres to help you get in your flow!
Music is great for our mind and body. It reduces stress, boosts creativity, and helps manage trauma and depression. Neurologists found that sound’s vibrations throughout our bodies can alter how we perceive pain (physically and mentally). Just think of how you can work out or run for longer with music.
One theory on the benefits of sound hypothesizes that listening to certain frequencies can shift your brainwaves. Sound baths, for example, induce Alpha and Theta brainwave states -- the same states experienced in meditation, well-documented to inspire relaxation and decrease stress.
Music and meditation both open us to a richer emotional experience: They stop our incessant, and often negative, mental chatter, and offer us an opportunity to inhabit the present moment with more intention and meaning.
Sound arrives at our ear literally ALL the time. Sometimes it’s the silence that seems rare. We invite you to notice, really notice, the layers of sound that are present when you listen fully - either to a song (one of your favs or something brand new!) or just to the sounds around you. Notice how listening with open ears, mind, and heart can bring you into presence.
We'd love to hear from you!
Where does music show up in your life? How do you make space to listen fully and intentionally? Have you ever had an emotional experience because of a piece of music?
🎥 Cymatics - Behind the Scenes (2 mins):Cymatics is the coolest thing you’ve never heard of -- the process of visualizing sound and vibrations through matter, like sand or water. Nigel goes behind the scenes of his music videos and explains how we can ‘see’ sound.
📖 Mindfulness, Music Appreciation and Empathy (4 mins):Patrick talks about music as its own language, providing us a way to communicate energy or vibes. Music speaks to our core desires and feelings and is a powerful means through which humans can connect.
📖 Neuroscience Shows Listening to Music Has Similar Effects as Meditation (11 mins):Darin notes that the goal of both music and meditation is to create powerful and positive shifts in our mental state and analyzes their similar effects on our brains and nervous systems.