Can frequencies heal?
In my view, there are two ways to approach, or interpret, the term "sound healing”. In a broad sense “healing” might refer to any therapy that can help one to feel whole and complete again. When one is stressed the mind and body can feel fractured. Sounds and frequencies can be a great help in returning to a state of relaxation and wholeness.
In a more specific sense, the word “healing” might refer something that is curative, for a very specific ailment.
I like to consider sound and frequency as a healing modality from each of these perspectives.
My primary focus is in creating relaxing music to calm the mind and the body. There is also beginning to be a resurgence by medical practitioners of using ultrasound and healing frequencies in specific ways for healing acute medical conditions. (See more video - Curing with sound)
What does 432 hertz refer to? Is this a healing frequency?
432hz is the pitch of A in a tuning that is also called Pythagorean Tuning. In music there is generally a standard pitch that musicians tune to. This allows musicians to always know what tuning to take, so that they can play in tune to each other. The standard tuning today is generally at 440hz or 440 cycles per second. 440hz is the note of A.
432 is the note of A (just like 440hz), but is 8hz lower that the standard that we are used to hearing. While this is a very close and may be hardly noticeable, some interesting numerical patterns begin to emerge at this tuning. First in the tuning of 432 many of the various notes are numerically even. Meaning they don’t contain decimals. So, the A 432 tuning is generally referred to as being more harmonic. There is a lot debate about 432 being more harmonic or having a different effect on the listener than 440, but this is still interesting to note.
When I play guitar I generally tune in 432, and I also play Native American flutes tuned in 432. I also like experiment with other tunings and frequencies to see what might resonate with me.
Healing Frequencies and Pythagoras:
So, back to 432 and Pythagorean tuning. Pythagoras, more widely known as the father of geometry could also be credited as pioneer in music as well. Pythagoras was the first to discover that changing the length of a vibrating string also altered its pitch, and that various ratios of those string lengths created harmonic, relationships. For example, Pythagoras noticed that when a string was halved it produced a tone an octave higher than the original length. So the different string lengths or ratios give us the intervals in music that we are used to hearing everyday. We attribute this discovery to Pythagoras.
Pythagoras also believed that sounds could heal. Pythagoras taught students about divine harmony, and the harmony of the planets. Pythagoras believed that sounds and certain intervals could heal the soul, and that music could purify the mind. Pythagoras life and discoveries are fascinating and I will explore more in another post.
About the frequencies listed:
The chart above is a frequency chart of in Pythagorean Tuning. A healing frequencies list of Pythagorean tuning. The grid is created starting at 1 and creating a row across in 3’s and a column created vertically by doubling by 2’s. The grid that is formed that contains the frequencies of various pitches C G D A etc. This cycle of notes is know as the circle of fifths. In this grid, 432 is the pitch for A that naturally emerges. A is commonly used as a reference pitch for tuning. This “A” note is what the term 432 tuning refers to, as you can see in the frequency chart above.
In the A column of this grid there are also other interesting numbers that emerge. Like the number 108 which occurs frequently in yogic practice. You’ve probably heard of the practice of completing 108 Sun salutations. 108 is also the number of Mala beads on a meditation necklace. The wrist bands usually have 27 beads, which is also another octave of A, and I believe that the rosary has 54 beads. It is also interesting that every octave of A in the 432 tuning adds up to equal 9.
In fact, every number on this grid is a factor of 9!
In this same grid there other numbers emerge like 144 which appears in many sacred texts (that is a D note), and also 186644 which is very close to the speed of light. That is an F# note..
There are also some interesting videos on youtube, which I will create links to. As a small disclaimer, I will say that don’t necessarily agree with all of the content of these, but they are great for spurring thought and further research into some of these connections.
A list of other healing frequencies for the body:
40hz frequency for healing
In the video below Dr. Lee Bartel explores the frequencies for healing. Dr. Bartel discovered that the 40hz frequency seems to stimulate greater harmony and signaling in the brain. His research shows improvements in Parkinsons, Alzheimers and Fibromyalgia. Dr. Bartel has decades of experience and research exploring the healing potential of sound. He has served as Professor Emeritus of Music and Health and Music Education and at the University of Toronto.
Article: The Effect of 40-Hz Light Therapy on Amyloid Load in Patients with Prodromal and Clinical Alzheimer’s Disease
Alpha and Theta Brainwave frequencies
Alpha brainwaves are produced when one is in a relaxed state. Alpha Brainwaves signal the parasympathetic nervous system that all is well and it is time to relax. In this relaxed state the body can repair and rejuvenate. The range for Alpha and Theta Brainwaves is between 5 and 12hz.
Studies also show that increasing Alpha brainwaves are effective for treating Generalized Anxiety Disorder.
Article: Effects of Increase in Amplitude of Occipital Alpha & Theta Brain Waves on Global Functioning Level of Patients with GAD
Article: Alpha Brain Waves boost creativity and reduce depression
Royal Rife was an American Doctor and Inventor. Rife invented a device which created vibration intended to destroy pathogenic cells. He claimed to have found frequencies in which these pathogenic cells were destroyed. Lists of Rife's healing frequencies can be found widely online.
These lists show the frequency at which the pathogen is destroyed by the vibration. This works similar to the way a wine glass can be shattered by the resonant frequencies of an opera singer.
Examples from a list of Rife's healing frequencies include:
E. Coli - 8020hz
Staph - 7270 hz
Strep - 8450 hz
Typhoid Fever - 1,445,000hz
Rife's worked was dismissed as fraudulent by the AMA. Interestingly, now many years after Rife's passing there are treatments that work using similar concepts and implementation. For example, Ultrasonic Cavitation, is now a widely available service using sound frequencies to destroy and remove fat cells from the body.
To learn more about Rife's work visit RifeVideos.com
Also similar to Rife's basic concept, this new technology uses Ultrasound to mechanically destroy targeted cells.
Are healing frequencies lists, pseudoscience?
There are various lists of "healing frequencies" you might find around the internet. There are many of these sites that do not seem interested in providing legitimate information. There are many that are completely bogus, claiming to offer frequencies for the things like "Liver detox" or "B12 deficiency". In some cases I have even had my sounds used without permisssion and labeled as such. Many of these types of sites are simply seem interested in monetizing youtube plays, or some other monetization scheme.
This can create confusion, and it is unfortunate, as there is beginning to be more and more legitimate scientific research into the healing power of sound and frequency.
While here are great strides that are beginning to be made in the area of sound, frequency and medicine, a degree of skepticism is certainly warranted when coming across sites that offer a prescriptive list of healing frequencies. Check with your Doctor or wellness practitioner to verify any claims, or proposed treatments. I have no doubt that at some point in the future, specific frequencies will be applied to specific issues. However there is much more progress to be made in this area.
Sound and frequency however, are well proven for their ability to help the mind and body enter states of deeper relaxation and meditation. It is also well known that these relaxed states may be healing for the mind and body. I imagine that in the near future the potential of sound will meet with the more and more validation from researchers and wellness practitioners.
While It is interesting to understand these numerical and frequency relationships, in my opinion, it is very beneficial to general wellness to simply stay focused on refining awareness through meditation. Ultimately, knowledge comes from awareness. With awareness of our own mind and body connection we can grow in understanding of how we react to things and how our perceptions affect the nervous system. Understanding this mind body connection can help one to manage internal states of stress. This level of understanding can lead to compassion, and caring for ourselves and others. Therapeutic sounds and can be an excellent tool for relaxation and meditation.