I’d never heard of binaural beats until the weekend when a girlfriend said she’d done a meditation with them and… went to space. I kid you not.
Of course I was utterly intrigued and did some Googling. First up Wikipedia which gives an ok explanation of what they are. However, this is better and explains the healing properties of meditating in Alpha, Beta, Theta and Delta states.
Essentially we hear in a frequency measured in Hertz or Hz. When one ear hears for example, 100 Hz and the other ear 104 Hz there is a 4 Hz differential.
It’s too low for us to hear the imbalance but our brain recognises the missing links and does a scramble to create a balance and in the process produces a third element – the binaural beat – which ends up being what your hear. Fascinating stuff!
I jumped on to Spotify to hear what the hell these beats sound like and I was both pleasantly surprised and disappointed. Some were awful some were lovely.
The actual beat on its own isn’t pleasant. It’s an unrelenting ‘wao-wao’ ‘wao-wao’ type sound.
The beauty of the music comes with what is laid over the top. The beat should still be audible but not the most prominent sound you hear. A lot of tracks have laid rainfall or the ocean over the top but I prefer a little complexity in the music I meditate to. It seems to help me with going deeper into the meditation and staying present. There are some good binaural beats on Spotify and Youtube – this one’s a goody, I couldn’t watch the video for long though!
Just listening for a minute or two you physically feel a difference in your body – a feeling not dissimilar to Codeine.
I’ve also recently discovered crystals and I’ve been dabbling in meditations with them. It’s surprising how connected you can feel to a piece of rock. Meditating with a stone seems to help foster that connection for me.
The first binaural beat meditation I did, I was holding Larimar – a beautiful new stone that I’d been coveting for a few weeks.
Slipping into the meditation was really easy. Far, far easier than a non-guided or guided meditation. It was a journey but not a very deep meditation.
The thing I’ve found meditating with binaural beats is that it is ridiculously visual. Images become stronger and more crisp the longer you’re in that session. I saw the potential after that first one and decided to double the meditation length the next day to 40 minutes.
The following day – Monday just gone – I decided to have another go but this time with Moldavite, a particularly powerful stone for transformation.
And I went to space.
Truly in space, stars everywhere and a wonderful sense of weightlessness. I recognised how deep in the meditation I was at one point, so to test it I tried to move my pinky finger. That pinky couldn’t move if you paid it.
There were so many images but they played out more like scenes that I didn’t just watch but was an active participant. I could direct where I wanted to go in space and ask questions – don’t worry, I provided my own answers, no need for the white coats just yet.
My physical body was also affected by certain scenes I was experiencing. At one point I said “let’s go to a planet” and I was whooshed through space, speeding past stars, turning corners, doing loops and I physically got quite cold and was aware I had goose bumps. Serious power of the mind or what?
Tonight’s meditation I used the same binaural beats but I used Citrine and had a wholly different experience. Tonight’s was very much earth based and all about people, so many faces of the world – Middle Eastern, Indian and African – all with really sad, resigned eyes.
There was a water theme running throughout and my heart broke during the meditation thinking they had no access to clean water or any water at all. I wondered if there was a past life connection or if I was tapping into what my future path is all about. As crazy as I may sound, it really did feel like it’s the past or the future.
These have been the most incredible meditation experiences I’ve had in my life.
And I feel like now is the right time for it to become part of my daily ritual. And for the right reasons – for the guilt free enjoyment of it! Not because ‘oh shit I haven’t done it in while, I know it’s good for me so I’ll sacrifice 20 minutes of what I’m doing now and go meditate’ – as I had been.
And of course I’d like a consistent practice for the astounding health reasons – and there are so many: chronic pain relief, help with depression, staying youthful looking – oh yes ladies, clarity, purpose, addiction recovery (did I mention I quit smoking the day after the first meditation), improved memory, increase in focus and learning capacity to name a few.
Apart from quitting smoking (woo day 3), the biggest impact I’ve noticed is the change in my sleeping pattern. I could sleep for Australia any day of the week. I’m most happy with 12 hours a night but make do with 8-10 during the week.
I’m also fortunate to be in a flexible work environment where being late four out of five days a week isn’t such a big deal. This week though, I’ve been early every single day – waking up 60-90 minutes before my alarm and having time to lay there and gather my thoughts and have snuggles with my cat, Smokey has been so wonderful! The frustrating thing is no one in the office has even noticed I’ve been early. Step aside ego, no room for you here.
I also feel happier, more cheery and ‘Teflon like’, there wouldn’t be much that could rub me the wrong way at the moment. But this could also be the excitement and rush of adrenalin that accompanies a new toy/hobby, so I’ll report back on that.
Note that I’ve done three binaural beats meditations and I’ve already noticed – no desire to smoke, or drink for that matter, my sleeping pattern has changed and my mood is consistently excellent. THREE MEDITATIONS. A total of 100 minutes and my daily life has dramatically changed – perhaps not forever but this is a serious start that has happened absolutely organically. I didn’t do these meditations thinking it would change anything, I did it out of wondering what the hell these crazy beats are all about.
40 minutes for 40 days
They say it take 21 days to create a habit so I’m doubling it (nearly) to make sure it sticks.
I’ll be doing a 40 minute meditation a day for 40 days. It’s not an organised one, just one I made up on the bus on my way to work (early I might add). And I realise it will be a little tough over Christmas, finding time and ways to remove myself between celebrations, hangovers and feasts but I’m committed to seeing it through.
I’d love for you to join me in the challenge using binaural beats or in whatever style you like your meditation! Shoot me an email if you’re keen.
But if you’ve taken part in this kind of challenge before and have some tips on how to keep on track, I’d really love to hear them. I’ve attempted many daily challenges in the past most of which I failed miserably.
I also intend to create story boards on Pinterest of the types of images/scenes I’m seeing in meditations so if I do, I’ll post weekly with links to the boards and the crystal used in that meditation.
Till next time… safe ‘travels’ 😉