• Joan Rothchild Hardin

Vibrational Sound Therapy: Healing with Tibetan Singing Bowls


I was very fortunate to be able to take two workshops with singing bowls Master Teacher Suren Shrestha and some of his students at the Rubin Museum of Himalayan Art in NYC this past weekend: Vibrational Sound Therapy (1.5 hours) and Learn to Heal with Singing Bowls (3 hours).

Suren Shrestha , Master Teacher, Healing with Tibetan Singing Bowls The workshops were both didactic and experiential. We learned various ways to play singing bowls and ting-sha (Tibetan cybals or chimes), a bit about their history and how to use them for healing, and about the body’s Chakra System (both the Indian Vedic and Tibetan systems).

The best singing bowls are made of a special seven-metal alloy of gold, silver, iron, mercury, tin, copper and lead. Each bowl is tuned to the specific note that affects one of the body’s seven chakras. The art of making traditional Tibetan singing bowls has been handed down from generation to generation within family clans. Craftsmen in the Kathmandu Valley in Nepal today are reviving the ancient techniques, traced back to the time of the Buddha – 2,500 years ago. These singing bowls, when struck on the side or made to sing, produce multiphonic and polyharmonic sounds which are unique, complex, subtle … and healing. (Shrestha, 2013) Suren grew up in the small village of Khandabari in Nepal, 45 miles from Mount Everest in the Himalayas, and now lives in Boulder, CO. In Khandabari, people were healed by herbalists, monks and shamans using drums, gongs and mantras. He learned from them how to practice the ancient techniques using sound and vibration and is now a Master Teaching traveling the world to educate others. This is his website, including a calendar of his workshops. HOW TO MAKE A TIBETAN BOWL SING

  1. Set the bowl in the palm of either hand without touching the sides of the bowl as that is where the vibration occurs.

  2. Holding a striker with an even pressure in the other hand, rub it in a circular motion on the outside rim of the bowl. Sometimes it’s easier to strike the bowl first to get the vibrations going before rubbing.

  3. When the sound becomes full, remove the striker from the bowl and let the bowl continue to sing without touching its sides.

How to play a Tibetan singing bowl – Shakti Gray Here’s a short video (4:01) demonstrating some basic techniques for playing Tibetan singing bowls.

Shakti Gray performing a Singing Bowls Meditation for the Crown Chakra And a longer video (10:00) of a Singing Bowl Meditation: Crown Chakra Set.

Tibetan Musician Nawang Khechog You can also use a striker on the outside of the bowl to ring the bowl like a bell. An upward motion towards the rim works best.


Ting-sha Cymbals for Meditation and Healing This short video (0.25) demonstrates another Tibetan vibrational technique,  Ting-sha Cymbals being played. VIBRATIONAL HEALING


Fractal Art: DNA What is Sound and Vibration Healing? Everyone has a vibration that is a signature of their health and well being. You could think of it as a natural results of the processes that ran our physical bodies as well as your mental, emotional, and subtle bodies. Similar to a musical instrument that can fall out of tune through use, our bodies can also fall out of vibrational harmony and potentially develop illness. Stress and negativity create blockages of a healthy flow of energy, showing up in the energy field around our body as lower energy disturbances at first, and later as illness in our physical body. Sound and vibration can be used to re-tune us to health and one of the most powerful modalities for this is the use of Tibetan singing bowls. When there is a deep relaxation through soothing, resonant sound, the body is affected on a cellular level, opening up the flow of energy to move us back toward vibrational alignment with health. Sound can help us shift our energy frequency from lower to higher, removing the lower frequencies of emotions such as fear, anger, and resentment. If fact, whenever you are immersed in lower frequency emotions you can simply chant “Om” to elevate your energy.The sound of the bowls is calming, and they are frequently used as a meditation aid as the sound induces a sense of peacefulness. Quantum physics has proven that everything has vibration, whether it’s a table, a chair, a person, a planet, or a cosmos. And wherever there is a sound, there is a vibration. When we use sound coupled with intention, which is the most important aspect of healing, we can direct sound vibration to raise the body’s vibrational frequency. Negative energy can make us physically ill or mentally depressed. Each bowl emits a soothing vibration that radiates out negative energy, which restricts your ability to reach your full physical, spiritual, and mental health…. Healing through sound and vibration has been known to reduce stress, improve concentration, reduce blood pressure, stimulate life force flow in the body, improve immunity, harmonize the chakras with the energy field, heighten intuition and perception, synchronize the brain hemispheres, remove mental and emotional negativity, and enhance creativity. Most importantly, stress is at the root of many of our twenty-first century diseases and it’s through relaxation of the body that balance, health, and happiness can be restored… As much as 70 percent of the human body is made up of water, so when you strike a singing bowl next to your body, the vibration makes a mandala (a pattern) in your body, which is healing and relaxing. – From the Introduction to How to Heal with Singing Bowls, by Suren Shrestha, pages 13-15

Suren Shrestha with some of his singing bowls HOW TO HEAL WITH SINGING BOWLS I recommend Suren Shrestha’s book, How to Heal with Singing Bowls for learning more about this kind of vibrational therapy.

by Suren Shrestha

Suren is donating all profits from this book, along with a large portion of the proceeds from the healing workshops he teaches in Boulder and around the world, to the Aama Orphanage Education Foundation (AOEF) to build a new orphanage in his native village in Nepal. The Foundation’s goal is to provide quality education to orphans of Eastern Nepal, giving priority to orphaned girls. Here’s more information on the Aama Orphanage Education Project. TIBETAN BOWLS USED IN HEALING AND MEDITATION There are many ways to use Tibetan singing bowls in healing. Here are some examples: ON AND AROUND THE BODY

Tibetan Bowls Placed On and Around the Body. The Bowls are Gonged or Made to Sing – the Vibrations To Be Absorbed.



Singing Bowl Used with Crystal on Third Eye Chakra AS AN ADJUNCT TO ACUPUNCTURE