The Sound Body: Remembering Wholeness through Nāda Yoga

Musings on the practical transformation I've experienced through my sound-based yoga practice... written while gazing out at the Himālayan range during a 2017 pilgrimage.

Ordinarily our awareness is limited to the sensations within the body. However, when we consciously enter sound, our awareness expands into the space within and surrounding our physical body. This vibratory sphere becomes our “sound body,” if you will, and gives us a visceral sense of transcendence. The dimensional quality is multi-directional; we can go within, to the point of emergence of sound. We can go without, to the infinity of expanding space.

Psychologically, once the conscious sound body is well established, it becomes difficult to maintain a sense of separateness, between self and Self, me and my environment, my heart and your heart. My orientation shifts from being a separate body on a planet floating in space, to being the space itself which contains all manifestations. I can shift my awareness to the micro and experience myself as the space in which subatomic particles dance and create an infinite variety of combinations. I can also shift my awareness to the macro and experience myself as the space in which the galaxies also spin and dance with each other.

If I happen to have a quantum collapse and my awareness is smashed back into the single physical body I appear as today, it is easy to reconnect to the beautiful vastness of my being by a simple re-tuning with the primordial sound. If I forget who I really am, the sound of my mantra, or the inner tone I hum to myself instantly reconnects me and gently vibrates away the debris clouding my awareness. It allows me to maintain full aliveness in the present moment, neither living out a replay of a previous story nor reaching blindly into the future.

On a practical level, depression, anxiety, worry, and fear vanish. Overflowing fullness, creativity, and joyful play becomes the new normal. When I see others struggling to grasp at temporary happiness through external means, I naturally want to share, teach, and help others empower themselves to enjoy their own sound body. As I tune my being to the inner sound, I am more interested in listening and being an instrument for that Grace than anything else. Neither needing to prove my worth, nor hiding my greatness, I can become a clear instrument for service. My thoughts, words, and actions are guided by the force of Love within me. That Love, as sound, is both the source and substance of all.

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