WHAT IS A SINGING BOWL?
A singing bowl is an ancient musical instrument shaped as an inverted bell. They come in a variety of sizes from small ones that can be held in the hand to much larger ones the can be stood in. The small ones produce higher tone delicate sounds while the larger ones produce a much deeper tone. The sound produced also depends on how it is struck usually with a wooden mallet commonly covered at one end in velvet. They can be struck once for a powerful long lasting tone or the mallet can be traced along its edge to create a powerful humming sound. The bowls are primarily used for religious or spiritual practices to create a harmonious sound that clears the energy field and surrounding space to help with mediation or relaxation.
HISTORY OF SINGING BOWLS
The true origin of singing bowls have been lost to the mists of time though they are these days most commonly associated with Tibet. Singing Bowls have been traditionally used in Tibetan meditative practices for about 2,000 years and are most commonly created from a composite for seven different metals each of which are associated with a heavenly body Gold (Sun), Silver (Moon), Mercury (Mercury), Copper (Venus), Iron (Mars), Tin (Jupiter) and Lead (Saturn), though there are other compositions.
In the modern era singing bowls have spread around the world and are used by sound therapists, yoga teachers and others. Suffice to say the magic sounds of singing bowls are now accessible to many people around the world. People are now getting a chance to discover their amazing properties outside of hidden temples and distant lands.
HOW ARE SINGING BOWLS MADE?
There are two methods used today. The first is by hand beating out a flat disk of the material to create the bell shape and hammered until smooth, this is the traditional method. The second is by pouring the metal into a mold and then fusing on a separate neck piece and then polished, this method produces longer lasting sounds though it misses out on the uniqueness of handmade ones. In the end what matters most is that a person resonates with the tone of the bowl no matter how it is made.
A modern version exists where a singing bowl is created from quartz crystal, these create beautiful high resonant tones and have the energy enhancing properties of the crystal too. Quite delicate in comparison to their metal counterparts.
Singing bowls are often used the begin and end a meditation as it helps calm the mind and bring a sense of peace and harmony to a person and space. They can also be used for a full meditation in and of themselves to bring the mind into focus and a deep state of relaxation. Singing bowls are also widely used in Sound Healing Therapy which focuses on using specific tones from various bowls over the human energy field to help re-harmonize it and bring our energies back into balance.
Having a singing bowl to use for meditation or just to clear stagnant energies is useful for anyone. When choosing a bowl just remember to find one that produces tones that you resonate with.