Anahata Nada -UncreatedSound
By Mr. Roger Gould-King
AUM (The most sacred symbol in Hinduism)
Total silence is perfection. Silence is necessary for sound to exist, it is the aural canvas for melody’s brush in our three dimensional world. The sounds we know are produced by at least two elements – the waves on a shore, wind in the trees, the blades of a bagpipe reed vibrating together, two lips, drum and drumstick, fingering a guitar string and so on.
One of the koans of Zen asks, “What is the sound of one hand clapping?”. Thissound is known in the Sanskrit tradition as “Anahata Nada,” the “Unmade Sound”. This means a sound not made in the way we know of – it is the “sound” of the universe, the primal sound of energy itself.
Ancient tradition says that the audible sound which most resembles this unmade sound isthe sound of “AUM” (OM). ( Brahma Randhra: Brahma-aperture; opening in the crown of the head; “the tiniest of apertures, in which is the silent, primordial sound, which gives you the impression that you are, but you really are not” (Nisargadatta)). According to the Vedas, AUM is the most sacred of all words, out of which emanated the universe. The symbol of both the personal God and the Brahman or Absolute. AUM is regarded by Hindus as the greatest mantra being of incalculable spiritual potency.
Aum is not, in itself, the un-struck sound, but leads one to it. The mantra is composedof four elements. Three are vocal sounds: A, U, and M, while the fourth element is the silence which begins and ends the audible sound, the silence which supports it. The objective of intoning AUM is not only the mantra itself, but the experience of perceiving the unmade sound that supports it. This is the same as seeking the space which “supports” the universe and its galaxies : the “emptiness” or nothingness of space is necessary for the existence of everything seen and unseen.
Everything seen and unseen, heard and unheard, smelt and un-smelt, felt and unfelt,tasted and un-tasted, are manifestations of pure energy. This energy is the “container” for all things, and it is the seemingly elusive Source people have given numerous names to – God, Self, Brahman , Godhead. The Absolute, the Supreme Reality, the Ultimate Reality, Truth or the Self of the Vedanta Philosophy are also used interchangeably for Brahman, and so on. Our interface with the material world is through our senses and the interpretation of these sensations with our minds – our thoughts. At a basic level, we tend to see things in their material form, not as energy manifested in many different ways. We categorise created forms with labels, naming this form a rock, that a rose, the other water, another a human being, and yet others as “animals”. What we seek is LOVE, but in applying labels to created forms, we end up with:
A weed is a flower that has never been loved
There are about 50 definitions of the word “love” in an English dictionary,but not one equates love to “God”. In defining love in these many different ways, we define our perception of everything, but if we become perfect Love ourselves, all apparent differences disappear and we see things as they really are. There is no such thing as “ugly” or “beautiful”, for these are only descriptions we apply to describe our own perceptions of things we haven’t yet seen as they see themselves in their own created form; we seek to be ekanta vasa [ekaant vaas]: free from mental concepts; “dwelling in mental solitude”.
While classification appears to be useful as a means of physical identification in athree-dimensional world created in the mind, it is the major barrier to identifying oneself with all created things that all came from the same Source, and this includes us. From this Source we are born to don the garment of our bodies in order to experience this world, and in the death of the body we “return” to the Source which we in fact, never left : we are always part of this energy and it is only the manifestation of our present life form coupled to the interference of our minds, which leads to the illusion that each one of us is a “separate” person.
This essay is not about suggesting some “path” for someone to follow, becausea path implies distance, a distance separating oneself from the destination : Self, God, Brahman. To go on some religious path or other often turns out to be like someone on one of those exercise machine treadmills- one can walk forever and never get to the desired destination because one never left it in the first place.
Chakras and the Natural Number series
Natural Number Series defined
Many years ago I was enthralled by the sight of a certain genus of flowering plant in aremote mountainous area, being pollinated by bees called by the plants by their emission of a distinct humming sound. After recording the television documentary, I checked the frequency of the fundamental frequency generated by the plants and found it to be 432 Hertz, or cycles per second. This prompted me to place small battery powered sound generators in the flower beds on my farm where I kept bee hives, and to discovering a whole new world of plant and bee intelligence.
All life used to live in synergy, and still strives to, despite the decimation of theenvironment by humankind. This interdependence establishes harmony on the physical and spiritual planes, each life form being dependent on the other. The eradication of a species creates an irreplaceable void which nature tries to balance as best it can, but usually, this leads often to further extinction of other species because a fundamental link in the material life form and spiritual chain has been destroyed.
The Natural Number series is formed by adding a succeeding number to the previous rootnumber, and is as follows :
0,1,1,2,3,5,8,13,21,34,55,89,144,233,377 … and so on. In other words, 5+8=13,8+13=21, 21+13=34 etc. If one divides one number by another, one gets a ratio, 89/144= 0.618, or, 144/89 = 1.618, and, 144/233=0.618.
This ratio, known variously as the golden section, golden mean or divine proportion,can be found everywhere in nature. It is represented by a rectangle in which the width compared to the length, is in the same proportion as the length compared to the sum of the width and length; i.e. “the smaller is to the larger, as the larger is to the whole”. This sequence will be found in genetics and geometry, snail shells and in the growth formations of plants and other life forms, including the proportions of the human body.
2 Chakras of the Head
If one assigns the value of one to the distance between the chin and the crown of thehuman head, then 0.618 of this distance will be found to correspond exactly to the various locations of the head chakras.
2.1 Location of Head Chakras
In his exhaustive definitive work on the chakras according to the traditional Indianunderstanding, Layayoga – an Advanced Method of Concentration, Shyam Sundar Goswami, citing many references, describes thirteen chakras altogether; the seven standard chakras and six minor ones. The following lists the chakras according to the 13-chakra model.
The location of these chakras is shown in the drawing.
3. The thirteen chakras
Chakra Location Petals Association Colour Tone Sahasrara above head 1000 transcendent gold 486 Guru above head 12 transcendent silver Nirvana crown 100 mind origin white Indu forehead 16 buddhi Manas forehead 6 chitta Ajna brow 2 manas violet 432 Talu/Lalana roof of mouth 12 or 64 Vishuddha throat 16 space blue 405 Anahata heart 12 air green 370 Hrit below heart 8 Manipura sternum base 10 fire yellow 324 Svadhistana below navel 6 water orange 288 Muladhara base of spine 4 earth red 270
The same method for determining the location of the head chakras, is used to locate those for the rest of the torso.
This is illustrated in the diagram.
The physical location of each chakra is important in terms of its response to vibrations, i.e. tones, colours and so on.
4 Determination of the pitches for each chakra note
The standard Western musical scale is based on an equally tempered (also called the12-tone chromatic) scale. In this scale, an octave consists of 12 equally spaced frequencies, each note being 2^1/12 (twelfth root of 2) from the previous note, as shown in the following table for the A440 musical scale. Therefore, the twelfth note is double the frequency of the first note.
Musical Note Frequency N Natural tube length Equivalent diatonic Equation Hz Hz
A 440 440.00 432.00 432 397mm do A# 440 x 2^1/12 466.16 B 440 x 2^2/12 493.88 484.90 486 353mm re C 440 x 2^3/12 523.25 513.75 C# 440 x 2^4/12 554.37 544.29 540 318mm mi D 440 x 2^5/12 587.33 576.65 576 298mm fa D# 440 x 2^6/12 622.25 E 440 x 2^7/12 659.26 647.27 648 265mm sol F 440 x 2^8/12 698.46 F# 440 x 2^9/12 739.99 726.53 740 232mm la G 440 x 2^10/12 783.99 G# 440 x 2^11/12 830.61 815.51 810 212mm ti A2 440 x 2^12/12 880.00 864.00 do
The natural scale is the scale used by me for the chakras, and not the Western diatonicscale per se. A long time ago the Highland bagpipe and other traditional instruments had a fundamental “A” of 432Hz, but this was increased to 440Hz with advent of the “standard” of 440, followed later by further increases in pitch to get pipe bands to perform with brass bands and orchestras. This Westernisation of folk instruments destroyed their inherent relationships with natural phenomena, and consequent loss of spiritual synergy with nature.
The natural scale proposed is calculated on the harmonization of any note with theupper harmonics of the fundamental A=432. These “natural” frequencies will in turn harmonize with the relevant chakra centres in the body – as heard by the ears, and interpreted by the brain as sound.
To hear what these notes actually sound like, the easiest thing to make is a set ofpitch pipes as illustrated. Any thin-walled tubing will do, such as bamboo or reed, or even metal curtain rod. Closing one end of such a pipe and blowing across the open end will produce a note of a pitch determined by the length of the pipe. The lengths of these pipes is given in the preceding table, calculated for sea level at standard temperature.
To hear the sounds using your PC, use QBasic’s SOUND function to write a simpleprogram to play the tones via your PC speaker – e.g. SOUND 432,18.2 will sound A for 1 second.
Like sound, colours vibrate at specific frequencies, and therefore have theircorresponding sound equivalents. Blue for example, vibrates at about 749.999 billion Hertz or cycles per second, and corresponds to the throat chakra and sound frequency of G. Red vibrates at half that of blue, and corresponds to Muladhara and C. Therefore sound and/or colours can be used in conjunction with specific chakras.
6 Smell, Taste and Sensation
These three functions of the body all respond to vibrations. In meditation it isimportant to try to harmonise these three as well. Sitting in a very hot and humid room, surrounded by foul smells and having a bitter taste in the mouth, are not conducive to meditation.
7 Brain functions
The electroencephalograph (AKA. EEG) is a machine that monitors brainwave activity.Laboratories have conducted many studies and experiments using these tools to understand the four main brainwave patterns: BETA, ALPHA, THETA and DELTA.
Each frequency has a characteristic blueprint, and produces a distinctive state ofconsciousness. BETA waves (14 cycles per second and above) dominate the normal waking state of consciousness when attention is directed towards the outside world. ALPHA waves (8-13 cycles-per second) are present during dreaming and light meditation when the eyes are closed. THETA waves (4-7 cycles per second) occur in sleep and are dominant in the higher state of mediation.
In deep meditation and deep sleep, DELTA waves (0.5 to 3 cycles per second) areexperienced. Each of these brainwave frequencies serves an important function. The optimum level for deep no-thought is in the realm of THETA. When in THETA, the senses are withdrawn from the external world and focused on the inner one. DELTA waves enable a total disassociation from three-dimensional existence and provide the most profound feelings of peace – and it is in this state that all life is “connected” directly to Self –”God”.
In direct correlation, we see similar effects brought on by the constant and rhythmicdrone of Tibetan Buddhist chants, which transport the monks and even other listeners into realms of meditation. These chants are at 432Hz in frequency, above or below this fundamental by one octave – 432 = 4.5 x 8 x 3 x 2 x 2.
Like sound waves, the brain has its own set of vibrations it uses to communicate withitself and the rest of the body. EEG equipment distinguishes these waves by measuring the speed with which neurons fire in-cycles per second.
Beta waves range between 13-40 HZ. The beta state is associated with peakconcentration, heightened alertness and visual acuity. Nobel Prize Winner, Sir Francis Crick and other scientists believe that the 40HZ beta frequency may be key to the act of cognition.
Alpha waves range between 7-12 HZ. This is a place of deep relaxation, but not quitemeditation. In Alpha, we begin to access the wealth of creativity that lies just below our conscious awareness – it is the gateway, the entry point that leads into deeper states of consciousness.
Theta waves range between 4-7 HZ. Theta is one of the more elusive and extraordinaryrealms one can explore. It is also known as the twilight state which we normally only experience briefly as we rise from delta upon waking, or drifting off to sleep. In theta we are in a waking dream, vivid imagery flashes before the mind’s eye and we are receptive to information beyond our normal conscious awareness.
Delta waves range between 0-4 HZ. Delta is associated with deep sleep.
8 Practical applications
The foregoing sections detail briefly the physical aspects of intoning AUM as amantra to experience God, Self, Brahman , Godhead. The Absolute, the Supreme Reality, the Ultimate Reality, Truth.
It is at the moment when the end of the mmm is reached and terminated, that the”Silence” which is God, Self, Brahman , Godhead. The Absolute, the Supreme Reality, the Ultimate Reality, Truth, is experienced. Once this experience is attained, what one seeks has been identified as it were, and the destination of one’s path has been reached.
Please note that the intonation of any mantra can be done mentally, that is, it is notnecessary to do so audibly.
From this point on, the objective is to attain a constant state of one-ness with Self,perfect bliss. It is then that one knows (as opposed to beliefs) that all life and every creature has a soul, that all things are sacred.
I offer these thoughts to you in humility and pray that you will find them of interest,and perhaps of use to you. I humbly offer this essay in the spirit of kshama-prarthana and ask your forgiveness for the shortcomings and mistakes it may contain.