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Using Sound and Rhythm to Reprogram the Subconscious Mind.

Updated: Oct 4, 2022

6,200 thoughts a day pass through our minds, according to research by psychologists from Queen's University in Canada, who devised a way to isolate thought patterns that focus on the same idea throughout consecutive moments. How many of these thoughts are you conscious of?

Current scientific estimates establish, some 95 percent of brain activity as unconscious. Among them are, habits and patterns, automatic body functions, creativity, emotions, personality, beliefs and values, and cognitive biases. It takes anywhere from 15 to over 250 days to form a new habit, with up to 40 percent of behaviour being habitual. Unless we can change these unconscious thought patterns and behaviours, we will never break out of the habitual patterns that we have 'been programmed' into. Influences from past experiences, social interactions with friends, family and society in general have all shaped this part of us that, for the majority of the time, is completely outside our conscious awareness. There are ways to tap into this world of the unconscious, like hypnosis and trauma work that use breathing methods and EFT tapping, to name just a few. So I started thinking about how I could work in this realm of unconscious thought patterns within my own practice of being a musician and sound therapist. I dove into the research and found out that there are three distinct tools at my disposal that could help people change their unconscious thought patterns and reprogram the beliefs and convictions that no longer serve them. - Subliminal messaging - Sound healing frequencies - Binaural beats


Subliminal messaging


Researcher Ed Kazdin conducted secondary research into perception - a notable example being surgical patients who were undergoing anesthesia. He would play recordings to patients during the surgery and discovered that information is capable of being perceived without any conscious awareness.

Kazdin compiled several research studies which concluded that peoples' thoughts, feelings, and actions can be influenced by stimuli processed, without any awareness of perceiving. (A. E. Kazdin (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Psychology (Vol. 7, pp. 497-499). New York: Oxford University Press, 2000) By recording affirmations that are not audible in the sense that our ear does not pick them up, our brain does indeed register the sub-audible words. This way the conscious mind can be bypassed.

Soundhealing frequencies

Maybe the concept that sound frequencies have a healing effect on the human body and have the effect to alter our states of consciousness sounds a bit far-fetched to you, the theory actually has received a decent amount of scientific study.

That music and sound can have an altering effect on our states of consciousness and our emotions is without a doubt. We've all experienced it when listening to our favourite music and I've yet to meet someone who has not been affected at all in their life by a specific piece of music. By using specific frequencies a sound healer can support healing of emotional pain or in the case of conditioned behaviour, the sound can help us change the programming if done consciously and with intent.

Binaural beats


Musicians and mystics have long recognized the power of rhythmic music. Ritual drumming and rhythmic prayer are found in cultures throughout the world and are used in religious ceremonies to induce trance states. At Stanford University scientists came together in 2006 for a symposium called "Brainwave Entrainment to External Rhythmic Stimuli: Interdisciplinary Research and Clinical Perspectives," (Stanford) Amongst the things the scientists discussed there was research showing that music with a strong beat stimulates the brain and ultimately causes brainwaves to synchronise. Slow beats induce slow brainwaves associated with hypnosis or meditation. Concentration and alertness may be enhanced by faster beats. In sound healing we can use this principle of synchronisation that we call entrainment to induce relaxation, increased focus and/or meditative states. We can use a drum directly but we can also use the principal of binaural beats. A binaural beat is an illusion created by the brain when you listen to two tones with slightly different frequencies in each ear at the same time. Your brain interprets the two tones as a beat of its own. The two tones align with your brain waves to produce a beat with a different frequency. This frequency is the difference in hertz (Hz) between the frequencies of the two tones. As such, we can create an illusionary shamanic drum rhythm 'in your own mind' without having to use an actual drum. Pretty cool if you ask me!

In Conclusion Once I knew of the three tools that are available to the sound healer, it became clear to me how I could help people influence their unconscious behaviour and thought patterns. So I decided to create guided meditations using principles of entrainment together with harmonics between specific healing frequencies and subliminal messaging in order to enable people to reach certain states of awareness and/or reprogram their subconscious beliefs by using subluminal affirmations or mantras. Coincidentally a friend and teacher of the ancient yogic wisdom traditions, approached me to collaborate on a project with him for which he was creating a set of guided meditations. The first one has been realised and is on his website here. Concurrently I decided to start my own project of producing short boosts of sound with subliminal affirmations that one can listen to multiple times a day for 30 seconds for very specific purposes. In these 'sound vitamins' or 'rescue sounds' ( I'm not yet sure how I will name them) are very specific themes tackled such as: overcoming fear/anxiety, overcoming procrastination, quitting addictions, attracting abundance etc. You name it. I will offer these short clips regularly every few days for a set amount of time to explore how they benefit people. If you would like to be part of the project and be notified whenever there's a new sound clip released then please subscribe to my YouTube channel and follow my Instagram page where I will be posting updates. Love Ingmar

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