Tibetan singing bowls

Significance of Tibetan Singing Bowls

Tibetan singing bowls are type of bells that create vibration with very rich deep sound when played. The purpose of using singing bowl is to promote relaxation in mind and body.

We are not new to healing power of sound. In ancient Hindu religion bell ringing and chanting at home and temple is common practice and is believed to be sacred. Reason for this is the belief and understanding that universe relates to sound. Universe and physical manifestations are created and connected with sound.  Sound of OM (AUM) is the seed of sound and it is the essential vibration of creation. OM represents the vibration of creation and when we chant OM during meditation, we can feel the universe.

Tibetan singing bowl is a mystical instrument that creates divine sound with positive vibration. Bowls are carved with symbols of religious, sacred significance (Om, lotus, mandala etc). Originated in India, singing bowls are used by Buddhist monks from long time for meditation purpose. Taoist also use them for meditation purposes.  Apart from monks and yogis’ people who practice wellness like herbalists, music therapists, massage practitioners use signing bowl to create and pass positive energy while treating patients.

In West, singing bowl was introduced in music industry in early 1970’s, with release of Tibetan bell album by Wolff & Hennings. In later years singing bowls became popular because of the significance. Rain Gray in late 1980’s studied and introduced the sacred singing bowl to West. Yogis often use Tibetan singing bowls during yoga practice. Singing bowl thus occupied Yoga studios, music therapy sessions and for treating mental ailments.

How does singing bowl works?

Singing bowls are used by tapping the bowl gently with a felt-tipped mallet followed by circling the bowl with different amounts of pressure and speed to vary sounds.  When the bowls are played to elicit prolonged sounds that emit varied vibrational frequencies, it gives a soothing effect for the listener. These bowls are made of metals and crushed crystals.  Irrespective of the material used, singing bowl can also be filled with water while playing. When played with or without water in it, bowl induces a meditation state and helps to heal from inside out.

Benefits of singing bowl: We know that one’s mental status influence physical health. Good sound or a good music from an instrument influences brain by means of entertainment. When brain is calm and free of anxiety it triggers positive energy in the body. The musicality of the singing bowl helps in relaxation and reduces stress level.  The vibrations and tones from singing bowl slows down heavy breathing, heart rate and disturbed brain waves. This results in,

  • Improved hormonal levels and produce endorphin
  • Vibration decreases stress hormone and blood pressure
  • Decrease in blood sugar
  • Gives relief from pain, discomfort and promotes overall health.
  • Listening to vibrating sound gives clarity and helps in focusing and concentration on subjects
  • Reduces mood disorders and increases mental awareness
  • Reduces insomnia and helps to get into deeper sleep
  • People who suffer from chronic pain, fibromyalgia and Parkinson disease feel better with this sound therapy.
  • Overall increase in physical energy

A simple tap and a swirl around mallet results in lingering notes in singling bowl. The sound that passes through air, reaches our mind to create positive environment. Our ancestors new the value of chanting, devotional singing, using divine instruments to create healthy environment by removing unhealthy surroundings. Understanding and integrating good sounds in our lives promotes healthy living.


Image by: Photo by C Drying on Unsplash (Free for commercial use)

Author: Sumana Rao | Posted on: April 30, 2020

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