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Sound Notes


Some Background Information On Sound

The sound level produced by humans was of an order of 5 it is now up to 18. This huge increase in sound (noise pollution) is having a negative effect on all living beings. ‘Noise’ is the result of disorganized and disorderly sound waves whose frequencies and volumes have no harmony or resonance with each other.

To produce sound an object must vibrate or move to and fro. Each complete to-and-fro movement is known as a cycle.

The number of to-and-fro cycles in one second is called a frequency. Frequency of sound is a major factor in determining their use in sound healing. Frequencies are measured in Hertz. One Hz is one vibration or cycle per second.

The frequency of human conversation ranges from 200 to 400 Hz. Middle C, the note in the middle of a piano keyboard, is 256 Hz. Low pitched sound such as thunder is in the range of 20 -40 Hz while high pitched sounds such as a mouse squeaking is about 3000 Hz. Most humans have a range from 20Hz to around 20,000 Hz. The upper limit decreases with age to around 12,000 Hz by late adulthood. Sounds with frequencies that are too low for humans to detect are called infrasonic while sounds with frequencies too high for humans to detect are called ultrasonic.

A baby in the womb has rudimentary ears within a few weeks of conception and the ears are fully functional at four and a half months.

Sound waves are traditionally depicted in the pattern of the smooth up-and-down motion of the sine wave. The wave-length of the sound wave is the distance between the same two points in two sound waves. There is a direct mathematical relationship between wavelength and frequency. The higher the frequency then the shorter the wave-length will be. Sound exists as the motions of atoms and molecules and it relies on matter for transmission. The amount of movement determines the volume.

A sound’s volume is measured in decibels - dB. The decibel scale is not a regular progression as the increase in sound intensity between 20 dB / 30 dB is less than the increase in intensity between 30 dB / 40 dB and so on. So at the upper end of the decibel scale a small increase in volume represents a huge increase in sound intensity.

Music that is pleasing to our ears has the ability to heal and is a universal human language.

Different frequencies of the musical scale cause blood cells to change colour and shape. The note ‘C’ makes blood cells longer; the note ‘E’ makes them spherical while the note ‘A’ changes their colour from red to pink. Music encapsulates a system of harmonies, rhythms, relationships and proportions that are found throughout nature and the man-made world. Music bypasses the mind’s logical and analytical filtering system

The frequencies of the notes make be sufficiently close to the cells own natural frequencies to set up sympathetic vibrations which reinforce resonances and break up disruptive interference patterns.

As particular sound waves enter the physical body the effect has been compared with a deep massage at cellular level. Every atom, molecule, cell, tissue and organ of the body continually broadcasts the frequencies of its physical, emotional, mental and spiritual life.
  • Music affects our respiration rates.
    A deep slow rate of breathing is optimal to produce a state of calm, control over the emotions, good metabolism and better intellectual functioning.
  • Music in the lower frequencies, between 40 and 60Hz, resonate in the lower back, pelvis, thighs and legs while as the higher frequencies resonate higher up the body.
  • Music affects the heartbeat, pulse rate and blood pressure.
    The heart rate responds to musical variables such as frequency, tempo and volume and tends to speed up or slow down to match the rhythm of the sound.
    A lower heart beat rate creates less physical tension and stress, helps to calm the mind and the body to heal itself.
    The lower heart rate also allows for longer periods of concentration while studying.
  • Sound affects our body temperature. Eerie type noises send a chill up our spine, put goose bumps on our skin and lower our core temperature.
    Listening to music with a strong beat can increase our body temperature.
  • The right types of sound can boost the function of the immune system.
    Studies suggest that insufficient oxygen in the blood can lead to immune deficiency and degenerate diseases.
    Singing, chanting and various types of vocalisation oxygenate the cells and boosts the immune system.
  • Mozart’s music, some New Age music and mild jazz can help reduce levels of cortisol in the blood.
  • Relaxing music produces positive emotional responses/triggers happy hormones stimulating the immune system.
  • The soothing rhythms in the various Baroque sonatas can help to regulate stress-related hormones.

Musical sounds contain harmonic frequencies and so the sound is pleasing to our ears and psyche. Each note within a piece of music is incorporated within a pattern of harmonics. So the number, combination and balance of notes and harmonics determine the quality of the sound. Doubling the frequency of a sound produces the same note on a higher level. This is the basis of an octave.

The mathematical ratios and relationships between musical sounds, scales, octaves and harmonics appear in many forms throughout nature.
The interval of a fifth is of essential importance in musical systems worldwide.
Pythagoras was able to express the proportions and ratios in the regular geometric forms we know as Platonic solids.
The interval of a fifth has an earthy quality to it.
Within the head, the chin to eyebrow distance represents a fifth interval.
With our body’s total height as the fundamental note all the body’s main features reflect the relationships between musical intervals.
So the human body is a living manifestation of the ratios and proportions that are reflected through the laws of the universe.
Our bodies are like sounding boards where the positive influences of healing sounds, in which pitch, volume, resonance and harmony play vital roles, can lead to healing at a deep level.
So if we can tune in to our individual note we can stimulate our own healing. Brain waves can be modified by both music and self-generated sounds.


Composers to make music sound both positive and spiritual frequently use the major sixth, in which the frequencies of the notes are expressed in the ratio of 8:5.
It is called the golden mean or divine proportion.
These numbers also appear in the famous array of numbers known as the Fibonacci sequence. Each number in the sequence is the sum of the two preceding numbers.
This sequence has many applications from music, architecture, art and the natural growth patterns of plant forms and snail shells.

Ordinary consciousness consists of beta waves which vibrate from 14 to 20 Hz. Heightened awareness and state of calm are characterised by alpha waves which cycle from 8 to 13 Hz. Periods of peak creativity, meditation and sleep are characterised by theta waves while deep sleep and deep meditation produce delta waves.
The slower the brain waves, the more relaxed, contented and peaceful we feel.
Certain baroque music can shift consciousness from the beta waves toward the alpha range and thus enhance alertness and general well being.
Music can create a dynamic balance between the more logical left and the intuitive right hemispheres of the brain, which allows us to think more creatively.

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