Himalayan Sound Revelations: The Complete Tibetan Singing Bowl Book

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9781905398317: Himalayan Sound Revelations: The Complete Tibetan Singing Bowl Book

This compendious but readable volume from one of the legends of present-day interest in the so-called Tibetan Singing Bowl should quickly establish itself as the definitive work on the subject. Particularly useful is the wide scope of the book, which includes not just Tibetan bowls and the techniques used to sound them but Chinese bells, drilbu and ding-sha, the planets, elements and chakras, cymatics, overtones and partials, nada yoga, mantras, symbolism and astrology of the bowls, their relation to western music, Pythagoras and Newton, and the psychic integrity and true awareness of the bowl user. There is almost nothing that is not here.

Although in the 1970s Frank Perry was one of the earliest practitioners of Himalayan Bowls his music has also been profoundly experimental, so that there are techniques in this book not to be found elsewhere alongside the clearest and most detailed analysis of how to 'play' the bowls, a combination which shows in Perry's bestselling albums Deep Peace and Celestial Harmonies.

Not only can you sound your bowls and perform with them, you can understand their overtones and harmonics and thus appreciate the tradition from which they come and the subtle symbols and messages associated with them

Frank's writing is also a revelation of his personal contact with living Himalayan Masters, his immersion in esoteric traditions and mysticism, and his understanding of other art forms such as the paintings of Nicholas Roerich, where he is an expert. He is the author many articles but this is his first book. As a musician he is widely mentioned in books on both percussion and improvisation, including those by Derek Bailey and Bettine and Taylor. He has recorded with Brian Eno and is an international performer familiar with both radio, television and modern media. Nonetheless he is in private a true ascetic, for whom the sound experience he is hearing and maybe creating is paramount.

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About the Author:

Frank Perry, a percussionist with an international audience before ever he discovered singing bowls, leads his field and is a master of conventional improvisation, deep meditation, psychic awareness and esoteric study. He has written on Sir Francis Bacon and lectured on Nicholas Roerich but is best known as the world's leading exponent of the meditative practice of bowls, bells and gongs. A natural psychic, he was involved with Spiritualism, Theosophy, Vedanta and before finding deep roots in the White Eagle Lodge. He has influenced musicians such as Keith Tippett, Alex Cline and Tim Wheater.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

One way ahead for the spiritualisation of music lies in focusing upon what lives in any one single tone. This is where the unique qualities of the Tibetan Singing Bowls excel. Each bowl makes one total OM sound making it easy for us to focus our entire attention upon the soul quality we find in their individual sound-universe; the sense of presence surfing their sound-waves. We ask ourselves: "What is the Bowl 'saying' to us?" We have to learn to follow the sound of the bowl to where it lives. This is the Yin approach. In essence all bowls when stroked with a wand, create a kind of 'womb of sound' (open, simple, humble, innocent, and trusting) resonating with this child-like quality. However, it might be easier to observe the effects of a bowl whilst striking it because it then has more impact upon your aura. After playing the bowl of your choice for some minutes (or some other competent person playing it for you) stop it and then study how the sounding of the bowl has changed you and your auric energy-field....

You may also wish to consider the speed of pulsation from the fundamental of a bowl. It is something of a matter of personal preference as to whether this pulsation (when struck) is favoured as being fast or slow. This can be slower than 1 bps otherwise reaching up to 6 or 7 bps. Often the fundamental of the bowl produces an audible pulse and when this is a slow-moving pulse these are generally deemed more suitable for healing or meditation as they are less excitable and assist us in slowing down our activity in order to focus our attention upon inner and deeper states of consciousness. With a basic pulse of between minus 1 up to 7 bps we are in the Delta and Theta areas of brain wave activity linked with deep meditation. It has been found that most bowls (aside from their fundamental) possess an audible pulsation of 8 to 12 bps when struck. This is produced when certain partials of the bowl lie close together in frequency and so produce a pulsation (a kind of vibrato effect). This is also the range of what are called Alpha Brain Waves (8 - 13 Hz), which is a happy 'coincidence' because these are the very frequencies created by people during relaxed states or whilst in light meditation. It is obvious, therefore, that the bowls can be valuable aids for meditation. Meditation takes many forms some of which include concentration, contemplation, and the ancient path of Nada Yoga - the Path of the Inner Sound, of which the bowls speak.

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