For those who have yet to encounter the gong, it might be hard to conceive that the striking of a lump of metal is as relaxing, invigorating and immersive experience than most spa treatments.
Ah, but the gong… the mystical sound of the cosmos… the sound of ohm.
What is gong bathing?
During a gong bathing session, which usually lasts on average about one hour in length, you will lie on a comfortable cushion-laden mat or in a reclining chair, you are literally ‘bathed’ in resonant sonic energy. The practitioner leading the session will hit the gong rhythmically, usually getting louder as the session comes to a crescendo and tailing the sound gently off again to bring you back into the room. The vibrating tones break through the mental blocks of mind, body and spirit to promote a deep sense of wellbeing, relaxation and inner peace. You are being cleansed by sound.
More than a musical instrument, the gong is a conduit for vibrational waves of energy, releasing reverberating tones of great fullness and resonance that interact with the human body on a very deep, even cellular level. The gong facilitates deep meditation; it can open all the chakras and enable healing to more readily occur, as the body draws in the resonances it needs to re-align and harmonise itself. Gong bathing is very powerful – it even has the ability to alter brain states and enable shifts of consciousness.
During a gong bath session, people often have the experience of floating in space, or in an ocean. Some have inspiring visions, or see colours. You may experience heat or cold and ‘tingles’ in different areas of the body as your energy changes. Most extraordinarily in the thick, multi-harmonic sonic bouquet is the emergence of ‘the choir of angels’ – a cosmic roar that percolates to the very depths, and heights, of one’s being. Gong bathing is in no way dangerous or painful, you may find your very first session slightly uncomfortable as you are experiencing new sensations, just relax and let go. You might even fall asleep! Don’t worry, the sound healing will still be working on you if you drift off.
It is said the sound of the gong has the effect of timelessness and of de-materialisation.
How will you feel after gong bathing?
The silence which settles when the gong bath ends is often very profound. Most people emerge from a gong bath feeling extremely relaxed, re-energised and refreshed. The aura, nerve and immune systems seem strengthened and the inner voice of higher consciousness more easily heard. Some people have described the state after a gong bath as that of emotional stillness.
By Gordon Coxon. A percussionist since his teens, Gordon was drawn to the gong several years ago through a deepening involvement in yoga and meditation and it has since become his main sphere of interest. He studies with Grand Gongmaster Don Conreaux – the world’s foremost authority on the gong – and offers gong baths regularly in group sessions and on a one-to-one basis. For further information visit gordonsgongsoirees.com
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