Listening to music is one of life's great pleasures, enjoyable not just for the sounds themselves or the artistry that creates them, but also for the mental and emotional states music helps us reach. The music industry has responded to our need to relax and reduce stress by producing special recordings to soothe our frazzled nerves, but a meditation MP3 can do much more than relaxation music. These sophisticated recordings can connect us with powerful inner talents that have been lying dormant for years, waiting to be unleashed.
The Tremendous Power of Music for Creative Visualization
If you're interested in this topic at all, there's a good chance that, like me, you've listened to a fair amount of instrumental, "New Age" CDs in your time. Names like Kitaro, Vangelis, Jean-Michel Jarre, Andreas Vollenweider, Yanni, etc. will be familiar to you. I always preferred instrumental music over vocals, as the vocals distracted me from visualizing whatever it was I wanted to concentrate on. Although I enjoyed music in its own right, I freely confess that I have long used it as a tool, helping me to forget about quotidian problems and focus on a better future. And it works! Music is very, very powerful when you learn to ride the waves of emotion that can be generated by particularly resonant recordings. I didn't realize it at the time, but I was actually using music to alter my state of consciousness.
What is the Difference between a Meditation MP3 and Relaxation Music?
Relaxation music is generally not designed to be an emotional roller-coasters at all. Its main objective is to help us relax and relieve stress, an important goal in the modern world to be sure, but a somewhat limited one nonetheless. Typically, such recordings feature soothing nature sounds such as waves crashing on a shoreline with seabirds calling out overhead, whale songs, or a waterfall or rainstorm in some imaginary, moss-covered rain forest in the Pacific Northwest. There are even more esoteric recordings based on "space sounds" - electro-magnetic waves detected by the Voyager and other space probes. Such recordings can definitely help us achieve a relaxed, Alpha state, wherein the brain's dominant frequency slows down and becomes more powerful. This can be very beneficial in combating hypertension, and opens the door to deeper levels of the mind. But it is only the beginning of what is possible with sound today.
The Meditation MP3 Revolution - Towards Complete Mind Control
Meditation MP3s are more than just music. While they generally do feature some kind of instrumental music, which may be classical, New Age, or traditional relaxation fare as discussed above, they include specially-designed tones that are intended to encourage the listener's brain to operate at a particular frequency. It has long been known that the brain exhibits a frequency-following response, tending to mimic the wave forms of sensory stimuli. Sound waves are the easiest way to harness this phenomenon to our advantage, and a raft of brainwave entrainment recordings has resulted. The specific techniques employed include binaural beats, monaural beats, and isochronic tones.
These special recordings can be used to take you places far beyond the reach of ordinary New Age CDs or relaxation music, entraining sound frequencies that are below the normal range of the human ear (20Hz - 20 KHz) and which correspond to the Alpha, Theta, or Delta brainwaves associated with the subconscious and the unconscious mind. Even the more exotic waves discovered quite recently, like Gamma and Lambda waves, can be entrained with a well-engineered meditation MP3.
For the purposes of creative visualization, a meditation MP3 targeting the Theta wave, or the boundary region between Alpha and Theta, can be extremely effective, as the mind is particularly receptive to "reprogramming" in this state. (For more on Theta, see my companion article here on Ezines, Exploring Theta Waves - The Exciting Implications of Theta Brain Waves for Learning and Memory.) The right recording can get you to this state in as little as 10 - 15 minutes, and what you do once you get there is entirely up to you!