SINGING BOWL MEDITATION
by Claire Potter
As a member of the New Renaissance Bookshop Staff, I have the privilege of getting to demo and show off our amazing selection of Singing Bowls. It is so fun to watch how the bowls almost instantaneously bring peace, wonderment, and upliftment to whoever is around at the time. Each bowl seems to have its own unique personality and healing quality that it brings. Some bowls have a deep rich, and grounding tone while others are high, clear, and angelic. The rest happily dance between the two extremes.
Since everything in creation is essentially vibration, sound has a tremendous effect on our physiology and our consciousness. Many meditation techniques employ mantra (sacred syllables/vibrations) to help the mind reach subtler states of consciousness. As we silently think the mantra, the mantra grows subtler and subtler until we no longer are experiencing the mantra or thought only pure being, consciousness silently witnessing the spaciousness of the present moment. Meditating with singing bowls employs the same mechanics as mantra meditation. If you own a singing bowl, I encourage you to experiment with it and allow it to take you on a spiritual journey deeper into the depths of your consciousness.
Here is one simple exercise to try.
1. Sit comfortably in a clean room with your singing bowl near by.
2. Close your eyes and allow your awareness to settle into the present. Once you feel that you are relatively relaxed, begin to pay attention to any sounds that you hear. It could be the sound of your own breathing, the hum of the refrigerator in the other room, or the laughter of children playing outside. Whatever you hear, just witness. You may be surprised how many sounds surround you that normally go unnoticed.
3. After doing this listening exercise for sometime gently and gradually open your eyes.
4. Pick up your striker and gently strike each side of your bowl four times. One strike for the North, one for the South, the East, and the West.
5. Begin to make your bowl sing. Hold your striker as if you were holding a pencil. Press the tip against the outside verticle surface of the bowl and mantain slow and steady pressure as you orbit your striker around the bowl's surface.
6. Once you get your bowl to start singing, allow your awareness to ride on the wave of sound.
7. Notice the sound crescendo (grow in volume) the longer you play. Once the bowl reaches its full capacity, gently pull the striker away from the bowl’s surface in such a way that the bowl does not cease to sing.
8. Now, relax into the sound and allow your attention to follow it as it diminishes into silence. As the last trace of sound disappears stay present with the silence and experience a state of deep peace within you.