Sound bath therapy, also referred to as ‘sound journey’, is gaining popularity as a powerful tool for self-healing and exploration. What is it, exactly? And what benefits can it have for us? We speak with Jason Eric Belair, owner of Expressing Oneness, to learn more.
Tell us about your background in music therapy; what drew you into this realm? It began on the sunny beaches of Hawaii, in a seemingly carefree world of vacationers, where I took on one of the greatest internal struggles of my life. Stress induced seizures overwhelmed my body with harsh electrical surges, often leaving me out of commision. Unable to carry out my duties as a business owner or parent, I reached out for help with a healthcare provider. I found dead end answers and poisonous chemicals as the best options they could offer from their practices.
It truly felt like life or death and I refused to settle for masking the issues, I wanted a cure! In the past, I had released two diseases, that were reportedly incurable through the proper usage of the mind, so even if I was the only one who believed in a cure – I had faith in a way being made. Intuition led me to a weekend intensive workshop of self discovery where I heard Gong Master, Barbara Cole Salmeron, share about a sound therapy studio she was helping organize. Something lit up inside of me, a knowing that I had to be there. In the first session, I felt something indescribable, like a neurological shift of the wiring in my brain. When I heard from Dr. Joe Dispenza “98 to 99% of healing energy is lost by chemical transmission within the body” and that “sound vibration delivery is far more effective,” I started to trust that I was onto something.
I began to do a work trade a few times per week that allowed me to experience multiple sessions each day. My diverse storytelling, ceremonial and meditation background was allowed to awaken as these profound rhythms and cosmic frequencies of sound assisted in rebalancing the hemispheres of the brain, help me relax and clear my mind. Because of the clarity I was receiving, I discovered that the fear is what was causing the seizures. Within approximately two weeks, I was at my follow up appointment for an MRI, only to find that all traces of the seizures had been erased! Fully cured. Vanished without a trace! I became dedicated to explore, study, collaborate and creatively share these teachings with the world.
Image courtesy of Spellbound Photography.
Sound bath therapy is certainly emerging as a trending topic; what is sound bath therapy, what does it entail, and what are the overall benefits to participants? As we are becoming more aware of our innate abilities as humans again, these types of trends to empower and awaken will continue to grow. Sound bath therapy, also referred to as ‘Sound Journey’ and many other descriptions, are all unique. Much of the process and benefits depends upon the facilitator and the participant themselves.
Typically, they are hosted in a very relaxing atmosphere, possibly with candlelight. Participants would be wearing comfy clothes seated or lying down on a yoga mat with a cozy blanket and pillow. Over the years I have introduced the sound therapy techniques alongside various visualization, meditation and in yoga classes. We use a wider range of therapeutic practices such as cognitive restructuring, storytelling, and ancient healing methods utilizing the meridian lines. Even incorporating sound frequencies into religious ceremonies for churches, tribes and family groups allow meaningful effects with participants.
These benefits have as wide of a range as the individuals attending. I have witnessed great stress and pain relief, visualizations that have answered some of life’s deepest questions, tumors shrink out of site, trauma’s of the past release. We are really only taping on the surface of life’s great mystery, you tell me what could be possible.
What are the different types of bowls that can be used, and what are the various differences and effects of each one? Bowls greatly vary in material, tone, frequency and function. There are quartz crystal, gem infused, metal, and other “singing bowls” and some simply for ringing. Often used directly on the body, are some precisely designed to emit specific frequencies to awaken various centers of the body.
We also utilize a plethora of indigenous instruments and traditional shamanic tools like drums, rattles, and flutes that evoke the minds capacity to imagine beyond the repetitive physical reality into possibility. (As with my seizures, from “incurable” to cured.) The gongs are another powerful instrument, and function similarly to the bowls, yet when played with the rhythms and inflections that I am guided to incorporate, yields a profound affect.
Private sessions and group gatherings are facilitated solo and in collaboration. This year, the work has risen to all new heights with the merging of gifts with Ms. Hannah Luce. Between her powerfully angelic and soulful vocals and the Acutonics sound therapy training with cosmic sound forks through an Eastern medicine lense, it is unlike anything I’ve seen in the world.
Typically, how long does a sound bath session last? What do participants typically report afterwards? Does anyone fall asleep? We customize the length of time and stylistic approach according to the needs of everyone we work with. A common session would be two hours, though we also provide overnight experiences for groups and retreats for those who are ready for deeper immersion work.
As you may imagine, in the nature of this practice we go deep within. Often, people who are depleted or simply ready to surrender to a greater unfolding end up falling deeply into slumber, the answer is yes. Sometimes within a minute of beginning, they’re sawing logs. When awareness is moved back inside the body instead of being projected outward into the regrets of the past or the fears of the future, things change quickly. All of a sudden, our attention is here in the present, the brain wave frequencies slow down and the body goes into the “rest and repair mode” it is designed for; as a result, a great deal of the healing occurs naturally.
The most typical reflections are of feeling profound peace of mind, physical lightness, and a sense of connection to others or their image of the Divine. As with the dissolving of my own seizures, people have shared with me that depression, trauma, bronchitis, chronic pain and other ailments have disappeared in as little as one session. The nature of the mind seems to need training to maintain relief of things like trauma, unhealthy habits, destructive beliefs or behaviors, etc. This is why our team is so excited about the launch of an integrative new curriculum designed for long term transformation. Right now, as humanity is experiencing this expansion of awareness, we realize we are all in this process together. People like me, who are tired of putting a bandaid on life’s frustrations are choosing to cure it in this way.
It’s been said that singing bowls can help heal headaches using sound vibration. Is this true? If so, how does it work? Singing bowls or other vibrational instruments have shown effective in alleviating headaches. It’s a good thing too, with this being one of the most common ailments on the planet. How it works would be determined by what specific type of headache it is. For instance, a migraine and a tension-based headache have different roots than a cluster type headache, therefore each are relieved in unique ways.
“The deep relaxation and release that comes from sound therapy is quick to reduce all types of headaches. Yet, beneath this, at the roots, more is revealed. The opening of subtle channels of the body by dense muscles being relaxed added to the increased activity in parts of the brain allows more blood flow, often eliminating migraine and tension type pains. Cluster headaches could be caused due to lack of sleep, they would then be remedied more from the increase of certain hormones and the deep restorative effects of sound treatments.”
Even with common ailments like headaches, our Western medicine professionals are still at odds as to the root causes. As we continue the research for the roots to be revealed, we can simultaneously live in solutions that serve to relieve our pain.
Why do you feel this work, and these experiences, are so transformative? Great question. Transformation is really what this work is all about. Our human experience can feel so set in stone. We all have an innate knowing that there is always more available, yet feel helpless or frustrated to discover just what that is. We find ourselves in situations or facing diagnosis that appear to have an inevitable fate about them. Yet master teachers and a few daring thinkers throughout history have demonstrated for humanity that we are in no way limited to these apparent limitations!
I work constantly to sculpt event flows that take individuals through a process of intelligent design to break free of this idea. To tune in to the conditions present in the mind and body, glide the awareness gently into the dark recesses where the roots of these conditions hide and provide the wind in the sails needed to move into a realization of what potentialities exist beyond them.
To do this puts the pen of self-authorship back into the hand of every attendee. We have the potential of revealing limitations for what they truly are, a misinterpretation or fear. This returns the power of choice to all who are willing to wield the responsibility by facing our fear and demonstrating our truth.
This is an ongoing process as we come to humbly realize how little we have believed in ourselves, how limited we have imagined the world and how deeply we have repressed our feelings. Apocalyptic fears of inevitable fates, impressions of “have and have-nots”, and other unconstructive ideologies are layered in our psychology and society in a deeply veiled fashion. Spending time daily to center into the highest idea imaginable, frequently deprogramming unuseful thinking, and surrendering into potentiality in immersive experiences like these are vital to discovering who one truly is. Finding balance between this and not taking ourselves too seriously is key.
How would you encourage someone to prepare for their first sound bath experience? I would invite you to suspend expectations! Preparation will develop as experience and willingness deepens. Simply observe, get to know yourself in a new way while looking for things you enjoy. Rather than having it be like a first time date, allowing it to be more like a first time adventure; to let go of mental pressures and give ourselves the freedom to explore. Come enjoy the music, the ambience, or meeting others who are exploring ideals of self.
The more relaxed a person is and willing to experience something new, the more likely they are to be free from the patterns and pains of the past. As with any journey a heartfelt intention is often what determines the direction. Simply setting the intention to be open and willing to experience what you are ready to experience, could be the most important piece of the puzzle.
Expressing Oneness is dedicated to bridging the gap found between theory and action. Fusing the wisdom of modern science, ancient philosophy and world religion into a tangibly life changing, mind awakening experience. Owner, Jason Eric Belair, has dedicated his life to expressing the oneness he has experienced through multiple outlets such as music, art, poetry, movement, and more.
Through Eric’s personal healing, education and mental re-patterning he has discovered a way of expression that is vulnerable, authentic, powerful, and meaningful. As a keynote speaker for business or spiritual communities, ceremonial or event leader, commissioned artist, or personal consultant, you are guaranteed a unique and personal connection to the creative Source you seek.
For more information, visit Expressing Oneness.