Background information on Chakra
Human ecosystem is not just a physical body but 5 layers of existence (see Pancha Kosha for details). Chakras are part of the etheric body (or Pranamaya kosha). At one end, they integrate with our Annamaya kosha (physical body) and at the other end they integrate with Manomaya kosha (mind, emotions, etc). While we segregate the layers for our understanding, it is important to realise these are not water tight compartments !
If we deep dive further, the integration of each chakra with other 2 of the 5 layers of existence can be described as below:
- The major chakras are virtual locations where both these conditions are met (Condition #1. There is major nerve junction, Condition #2, There is a major endocrine gland). You can validate this point with a surgeon like I did.
- Each chakra location is also a major emotional centre i.e. the seat of a key emotion. For example, the heart chakra is associated with the feeling of love (or at the negative end – with the feeling not able to forgive). Thoughts, feelings, emotions, fear, phobia etc rule the manomaya kosha (3rd of the 5 layers of existence that we call Pancha Kosha).
There is lot of material and books on Chakra so lets not carry this any further but just remember that chakras are major energy centers and they integrate with physical body and our emotions !
Energy and Chakras
While it is natural to become involved with 7 notes and chakras, in the end, we need to realise that each singing bowl does not provided “only” one note, they often provide multiple harmonics (or partials). In other words, it is not straightforward not reasonable to “assign” one frequency i.e. one “note” to a singing bowl. (If you are unsure, read my article on Singing Bowl frequency).
Some arguments (captured as “Common Belief”) in favour of assigning a “chakra” frequency to each singing bowl. The statements in the bracket provides a basis for not blindly following the common belief.
Does this mean we should NOT use “chakra bowls”?
No. I don’t say that. Here is a small story. I spent a few hours with my Guru in Nepal (Shree Krishna Shahi – who incidentally guided me in this thinking. Gratitude.). I posed this question of chakra bowl and first thing he suggested was to move away from the numbers. He made lot of sense. Initially, I challenged him and showed him first and second (harmonic) of each of the singing bowls in his chakra set.
Table A above shows the mapping of the 2 main harmonics of each of the 7 bowls.
The notes denoted here are NOT the Western notes but the notes used as per Tibetan System (F note = Root Chakra, C note = Sacral Chakra and so on). The math did NOT add up when I saw the graph of the frequencies of each of the chakra bowl !
I requested him that I would revise the sequence of the bowls as per numbers (Table B shows that new sequence) . When I played the 7 bowls in chakra sequence (he did not look at the new sequence), he smiled and said “this would also work” !
Table B – The bowls re-arranged as per increasing frequency
(based on my own interpretation using a spectrum analyser to identify the two loudest frequencies)
He told me (without using the word “stupid”) that it is all about the “feeling” when you listen to the sound (rich in overtones). He suggested that we use our senses (not just the ear) and understand which part of the body resonates “more” with the “harmonic sounds”. He encouraged me to do a random check with a few individuals to validate the “gut” feel. Do you mean we should NOT use “chakra bowls”?
I tested this approach and based on this, I have captured my learnings and recommendations below.
I hope this leaves you with some actionable steps you can use to select your chakra set !
- Classify each bowl into low, medium and high frequency sound (and validate that the sound resonates with lower, middle or upper chakras).
- Above point also means, pick your root, heart and crown chakra bowls first (Puey Chin contributed to this by asking the question. If you have to pick one bowl, go for a bowl that resonates with Heart Chakra). In choosing the heart chakra bowl, feel the energy by moving the bowl around the heart-chakra and feel the vibrations. You will know when you get it “right”.
- Once you get 3 core bowls right (for heart, root and crown), pick 1 additional bowl – preferably for solar plexus.
- Complete the full set by picking all the bowls, play them in a sequence by some validation without using the devices ! (if you have a couple of individuals e.g. Reiki experts or energy workers, seek their inputs on where the bowl’s energy is felt).
- Last, but not the least, when in doubt, do not trust the machine (or a device), trust the human instinct & the senses.
This is a bit simplistic representation of the idea that we must not get hung up with neither “measuring devices and gadgets” not “music aficionados” in selecting a chakra set.
I end the article with a quote from my Guru. “Be creative with the singing bowls, use your intuition and not machines !”.
Copyright © Gunjan Trivedi
(Feel free to re-use, with prior permission of the author via firstname.lastname@example.org)