Jonathan Goldman is an American author, musician and spiritual teacher in the fields of Harmonics and Sound Healing. He shares with us a mere snippet of his incredible knowledge.
Do you believe that EVERYTHING is vibration and frequency?
It is a matter of perception. Science and Spirituality, Quantum Mechanics and Ancient Mysticism are all in agreement that everything is in vibration.
What is important to understand is that the basic concept of using sound as a healing modality stems from the fact that everything is in vibration, from the electrons moving around the nucleus of an atom, to planets and distant galaxies moving around the sun. They are all in motion and putting out a vibration. Whether this vibration can be heard is another topic.
Sound is measured in wave forms–what we call cycles per second (Hertz). We hear from around 16 Hz to 16000 Hz. To compare, dolphins for example, can hear and perceive up to 180 000 cycles per second. Just because we cannot hear something, does not mean that there is not a sound being created.
The basic principle of using sound as a healing modality is this: Everything is in a state of vibration and everything has a resonant frequency (including every bone, organ and system in our body). We can compare our body to an orchestra – if the violin is out of tune, the whole piece will be affected. If one of our organs has lost its frequency or vibration, we will start to feel out of tune and out of ease and we call this dis-ease. When we are in perfect vibration, we are in sound health.
The basic idea of using sound for healing is simply to restore the sheet music back to the violin player, to create and restore the correct resonant frequency to our body.
How does sound affect us?
There are two ways that sound affects us. The first is psycho-acoustics – the sound goes into our ears and brain and affects our nervous system, heart rate, respiration and brain waves. This can include music or speaking. This is why it is so important to speak with love and compassion and this is one way we can use our voices to create a healing frequency.
The second is vibro-acoustics and this is where the sound goes into our body and cells, affecting us on a cellular, molecular, DNA level. Up until very recently, science has focused primarily on psychoacoustics.
Nevertheless, this awareness of psychoacoustics has been around for quite a while. The “New York Times” Science Section, Feb. 8, 1988 had a headline that read something like: “Sound Shaped Into Dazzling New Tool—Can Make, Break or Rearrange Molecular Structure”. If you can do this, what can not be potentially accomplished through using sound?
How important do you feel SOUND to be for a foetus?
Very important. I would refer you to the works of Dr. Alfred Tomatis, particularly his book The Conscious Ear. It is said that the ear is the very first organ to develop in a foetus, and the very last organ to leave us when we pass over.
Sound is therefore extremely important to the foetus, whether it be the sound of the mother’s voice or other sounds. For all pregnant mothers out there, speak lovingly to your foetus and avoid exposing yourself to harsh situations.
Could you explain how tuning forks work?
I have two different types of tuning forks. One set is designed to be used in a psycho-acoustic manner, bringing them near the ears and listening to their powerful sounds, such as the 2:3 ratio, which we call the Sacred Ratio Pythagorean Tuning Forks. The sound emitted soothes the nervous system and reduces stress (the major cause of illness and disease). They can be used psycho-acoustically and vibro-acoustically. They are incredible healing tools.
The other type of tuning fork is designed to be used in a vibro-acoustic manner, with the stems of the tuning forks being applied to the physical body—on some point such as an acupuncture point. The sound goes into the body and creates an internal massage. We
Do you believe everybody has the same frequency?
I do not believe that we are all unique vibratory beings. Let’s take penicillin for example, which is also in a state of frequency and vibration – when I run a workshop and ask who is allergic to penicillin, between 5 and 20% will raise their hands.
For 80% of the group, penicillin is a healing frequency and for the other 20, it is a toxic frequency. We have to remember that not everything works the same for everyone. This is mandatory when it comes to the world of sound healing. It must resonate with you, whatever sound that may be.
Can you tell us about your formula “Frequency + Intent = Healing”?
This may be one of my most important discoveries about the power of sound to heal and transform—that it is not just the frequency of the sound that creates the effect, but also the intention of the person making and receiving the sound that influences the outcome of the sound. I discovered this back in the 1980’s when I was working on my Master’s Degree from Lesley University and saw that there were many different systems of using sound for healing—and that most of them were not necessarily in alignment. You’d have different doctors and scientists using different frequencies to heal the same problem. And different spiritual masters using different mantras to resonate the same chakras. Or the same mantra to resonate different chakras.
I was in a state of intellectual angst as I tried to correlate this information and saw it was so different. Then I had a deep revelation that it was both the actual sound—the frequency—as well as the consciousness of the person making and receiving the sound—the intention—that created the overall effect of the sound. And I came up with “Frequency + Intent = Healing”. This is one explanation for why the field of sound healing is so rich and so varied—there are so many possible ways of working with sound.
When I first came up with this formula, it was very difficult for the scientific community to grasp. But now, with books like The Biology of Belief by Dr. Bruce Lipton and You Are the Placebo by Dr. Joe Dispenza, the importance of our thoughts—our belief, our intention—is beginning to be understood and accepted. I give thanks. It’s so very important.
We need to be aware that even the power of our speaking voice can be healing—if we speak with kindness and compassion. And it can have the opposite effect if we don’t! So let us be positive and kind when we are in conversation.
How and when did this modality first resonate with you?
I was playing in a rock band in the 1970s, and had a gig at a club in Cape Cod, Massachusetts. When I plugged in my electric guitar and started playing, I watched the audience and came to realize that the energy in that club was one of violence and aggression. I believe that the alcohol and intoxicants that were being consumed by the audience contributed to this ambiance, but I felt that the music I was playing at the time was having a negative effect on people and rendering them angry and aggressive. I remember thinking at that moment that music could perhaps be used to make people feel better. I had been performing professionally for the previous 15 years and that thought had never crossed my mind.
Within a week that thought had shifted, and I started questioning how and what sounds could be used to heal. I had this incredible revelation and within days, doors started to open to me in terms of accessibility, investigating the world of sound healing. I attended a workshop taught by Sarah Benson where I was literally transported out of my body.
That was the beginning for me…I created the Sound Healers Association, I then went on to do a Masters degree at Lesley University of Massachusetts researching the uses of sound and music for healing. I took my record label which had been a New Wave Label and turned it into a New Age Label and my first book Healing Sounds got published. It’s now going to be having a special 30th Anniversary Edition published in 2022.
I would like to add that while this experience was how my journey into sound healing began, I in no way wish to denigrate Rock n’ Roll music and do not believe that it can’t be a healing music. It is my belief that any music can have therapeutic effects, if heard at the right time and place for any given individual.
Is sound healing best used on its own or alongside another modality, or does it depend on what a particular client needs?
I think one of the major keys in sound healing is that it is not only about the sound, it is about the energy that we put into the sound that creates the overall outcome. Frequency + intent = healing!
I would be pretty limited if I only used sound. My wife is a wonderful psychotherapist, and I have learned a lot from her; using psychology as a basis for working with sound, and vice versa. You have to use what works for you. Often these modalities are used as a complementary therapy, just one thing is not a be all and end all for everyone – and of course it depends on what your client needs.
For the last few years, you’ve been focusing on the power of the hum. You’ve even written a book on the subject. Why the hum? What are some of the physical and psychological effects of humming? How can humming be used for pain and stress reduction?
My wife and I have reintroduced humming as a therapeutic tool for our planet and we published a book called The Humming Effect – Sound Healing for Health and Happiness. I wanted to introduce a vocal modality that anyone can use. The hum is a sound that is all inclusive and it is incredibly powerful in many ways. In our book, we focus on “Conscious Humming” which combines doing deep breathing and projecting the hum as one consistent tone. If we do this, the effects are amazing.
All sorts of unique and wonderful things occur when we do the Conscious Hum; we get increased oxygen to the cells, increased lymphatic circulation, lower blood pressure and heart rate, create the release of nitric oxide, melatonin, endorphins and oxytocin—that is extraordinary. Humming is also the most powerful vibro-acoustic sound that we can make with our voice.
If you are feeling stressed out, all you need to do is just a few Conscious Hums– just take a few deep breaths, hum for even one minute or so and you will feel almost instantly relaxed. It’s a wonderful technique that everyone can do.
What are some applications of sound healing that our readers can use?
One is working with psycho-acoustics – listen to music that makes you feel good – it’s as simple as that. There is a phenomenon called entrainment, which means that the rhythms of your brain and body (including heart and respiratory system) will synchronize with the rhythms of different types of music. Therefore, if you need to slow down, listen to slow music…what do you need at a particular time?
Another is humming which we have mentioned previously. It is extremely powerful, anyone can do it and you can experience it to be Life Changing. Once you have experienced it, you will understand how it can work for you.
Each year you have World Sound Healing Day on February 14th—Valentine’s Day. Can you tell us about it? How can sound be used to assist peace and harmony on the planet?
Around 2000, I was in deep meditation and received the information that it was time to widen my scope of sound healing from personal sound healing to include planetary sound healing. From my work with sacred sound in groups, I realized that the power of many people engaged in sending intentionalized sound could be very powerful, so back in 2002, we created the first World Sound Healing Day. This was a day when people throughout our planet would send a “sonic valentine” to the Gaia Matrix, our Mother Earth.
Initially, we had thousands of people in hundreds of countries sounding the “AH”, which is the heart sound, filled with love and compassion. Recently, we’ve expanded that to include all sorts of different sounds, such as crystal bowls, mantric chanting or even musical performances. If it’s sound encoded with the energy of love and compassion, it’s a good sound for World Sound Healing Day.
The idea behind this is basically that when our heart and our brain are in a state of coherence, the electro-magnetic field we produce is anywhere from 50 to 500 to (some speculate) even 5000 times greater. This is relatively easy to produce—it’s simply a matter of breathing deeply and feeling gratitude.. This is based on the work of many mystical and spiritual science traditions, including HeartMath Institute. I’d like to suggest that if we add the power of sound to this, then that field is even greater. This is why the various prayers on our planet are vocalized—whispered, chanted, spoken or sung. Because sound amplifies the power of prayer and meditation. It helps focus this energy as well.
So, coming on Feb. 14, 2022, we have the 20th Annual World Sound Healing Day. Each year it grows bigger and more powerful. There’s even some scientific evidence from places such as the Global Consciousness Project, that our intentionalized sounds can interface and effect the energy field of the Noosphere—the consciousness of our planet. It’s my understanding that through using intentionalized sound in this manner, we can literally shift and raise the consciousness of all living beings on the planet. I think that’s so important during these very volatile times.
If you’re interested in this event, please go to www.worldsoundhealingday.org and check out the website. We’ll soon be updating it for 2022 but basically it’s got material there on the how’s and why’s of the importance of World Sound Healing Day. :
Remember: We heal the planet, we heal ourselves. We heal ourselves and we heal the planet.
What can one expect from a session with Jonathan Goldman?
Many years ago, I made the conscious decision not to have a sound healing practice. I realized that I could either dedicate myself to creating music, writing books, spreading the awareness of sound for healing and primarily teaching how sound could be used as a healing modality. Or I could choose to have a practice.
I decided that teaching would have the greatest benefit for the most people. When I did do sound healing (and I still do this for some people), I will acknowledge that the sessions varied from person to person, situation to situation and condition to condition.
I’ve got some excellent scientific devices that I would use in certain cases. With other cases, I would use tuning forks or Tibetan or crystal bowls. With others, I would use vibro-acoustic therapy from sound chairs. With some, I found that recorded sound and music was the best. With many, I would use the voice–either my voice or theirs. Often, I would blend different approaches depending upon the person and their needs. There was no typical Jonathan Goldman session.
I have taught specific techniques using tuning forks and the voice, and this is excellent for sessions that focus on chakra and aura balancing. That can be helpful and effective for so many other things. But there are so many other approaches as well – it depends upon the person and what they resonate with.
For 20 years, we presented the Healing Sounds Intensive, which was a 9 Day program that went for about 12 hours a day and we taught many, many different aspects of using sound as a healing and transformational modality–mostly using the voice in this fashion, through mantras, vocal harmonics, chanting, kirtans, sonic shamanism, guided meditations, vowels and other sacred sounds and toning.
But we also taught other modalities such as Tibetan and crystal bowls, drumming, tuning forks, psycho-acoustics such as vibro-acoustics. Understanding the basic principles of how sound can heal and then learning how to embody these principles is most excellent. You know the expression: “If you give a person a fish, you feed them for the day. But if you teach that person to fish, you feed them for their life.” That’s why, I’ve felt that teaching people how to use sound for healing is vitally important. It gives them the freedom to empower themselves to use their own sounds for healing. There is nothing better.