At Seed of Life Healing we use sound healing to slow down the brainwaves. During a Sound Healing session, the sound waves and vibrations of the singing bowls enter the participant’s brain and body. The brainwaves start to synchronise with the vibrations of the bowls – guiding the participant’s brainwaves into a theta state.
The human brain consists of billions of little nerve cells, known as neurons. In order for your brain to work, these neurons communicate with each other using electricity. When millions of neurons are communicating at the same time, this all generates a significant amount of electrical activity. This combined electrical activity in the brain is known as a brainwave pattern.
At any point in time, we have a "dominant" brainwave pattern. Our brainwaves change according to what we’re doing and feeling, and how relaxed or focused or stressed we are. When slower brainwaves are dominant we may feel relaxed, sleepy or dreamy. The faster brainwaves are dominant when we feel wired or hyper-alert.
The descriptions that follow are only broad descriptions - in practice things are far more complex, and brainwaves reflect different aspects when they occur in different locations in the brain.
Brainwave speed is measured in hertz (Hz, cycles per second) and they are divided into bands delineating slow, moderate, and fast waves.
BETA WAVES (12 TO 38 HZ)
Beta brainwaves dominate our normal waking state of consciousness when attention is directed towards cognitive tasks and the outside world. Beta is a ‘fast’ activity, present when we are alert, attentive, engaged in problem solving, judgment, decision making, or focused mental activity.
Beta brainwaves are further divided into three bands:
Lo-Beta (Beta1, 12-15Hz) can be thought of as a 'fast idle', or musing.
Beta (Beta2, 15-22Hz) is high engagement or actively figuring something out.
Hi-Beta (Beta3, 22-38Hz) is highly complex thought, integrating new experiences, high anxiety, or excitement, stress, overwhelmed. Continual high frequency processing is not a very efficient way to run the brain, as it takes a tremendous amount of energy and can eventually result in burn-out, depression, disease.
ALPHA WAVES (8 TO 12 HZ)
Alpha brainwaves are dominant during quietly flowing thoughts, and in some meditative states. Alpha is ‘the power of now’, being here, in the present. Alpha is the resting state for the brain. Alpha waves aid overall mental coordination, calmness, alertness, mind/body integration and learning. In an Alpha brainwave state the inner world becomes more real than the outer world.
THETA WAVES (3 TO 8 HZ)
Theta brainwaves occur most often in sleep but are also dominant in deep meditation. Theta is our gateway to learning, memory, and intuition. In theta, our senses are withdrawn from the external world and focused on signals originating from within. It is that twilight state which we normally only experience fleetingly as we wake or drift off to sleep. In theta we are in a dream; vivid imagery, intuition and information beyond our normal conscious awareness. It’s where we have mystical experiences.
DELTA WAVES (0.5 TO 3 HZ)
Delta brainwaves are slow brainwaves. They are generated in deepest meditation and dreamless sleep. Delta waves suspend external awareness and are the source of empathy. Healing and regeneration are stimulated in this state, and that is why deep restorative sleep and deep meditations are so essential to the healing process.
GAMMA WAVES (38 TO 80 HZ)
Gamma brainwaves are the fastest of the brain waves (high frequency), and relate to simultaneous processing of information from different brain areas. Gamma brainwaves pass information rapidly. The most subtle of the brainwave frequencies, the mind has to be quiet to access gamma.
Gamma was dismissed as 'spare brain noise' until researchers discovered it was highly active when in states of universal love, altruism, and the ‘higher virtues’. Gamma is also above the frequency of neuronal firing, so how it is generated remains a mystery. It is speculated that gamma rhythms modulate perception and consciousness, and that a greater presence of gamma relates to expanded consciousness.