In all ancient cultures, music has been extremely important – whether we consider the Vedic times where devotional songs or “bhajans” were sung in praise of the Gods and Goddesses or whether we consider chanting by the Buddhists and Tibetans in their monasteries. Let us look back to the biblical times and the Church where singing of hymns was a wonderful way to finish a service and leave the parishioners with a feeling of joy on a Sunday morning. We see the same in the Gurudwara or the Mosque. This raises the question of Why?
Why music was considered important for healing by the Ancients?
We can find an explanation of this in modern science – in an article by Vanessa Van Edwards – where she explains that music has been effective in “improving memory function” and “increased rate of healing”. This happens because “music connects with the autonomic nervous system (brain function, blood pressure, and heartbeat) and the limbic system (feelings and emotions).”
After reading the above research, this wisdom of the ancients started to make a lot of sense. However, I wanted to see how it worked for me personally. This past Sunday I decided to spend about an hour or two singing bhajans in praise of Lord Krishna along with doing the repetitive stating (“jaap”) of the Krishna Maha Mantra [Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare; Hare Ram, Hare Ram, Ram, Ram, Hare Hare].
After spending this time dedicated to devotional music, I found my heart open with much love and compassion for myself and all in my world. I had a constant smile on my face and felt joyful and light! There was a complete sense of wellbeing and peace in my mind, body, and spirit.
There is definitely much wisdom in the guidance left to us by the Ancients – it would be worth trying out for yourself especially when you have had a trying or stressful week. Namaste.