An Encinitas author shares all about Tibetan bowls and how they can help heal people in a new book.
Diane Mandle released "Ancient Sounds for a New Age: An Introduction to Himalayan Sacred Sound Instruments" in late January, aiming to teach people how the ancient artifacts seeped in Buddhist culture work, their background and what they can do.
Mandle, who owns a Tibetan Bowl school in Encinitas, has given more than 250 educational concert programs in 32 states as well as in India, Costa Rica, Mexico and St. Croix.
She recently discussed her newest book and how the instrument works.
This Q&A has been edited for space.
How did you get interested in the Tibetan bowls?
I've been working with them for 20 years. I discovered them by accident on the East Coast. I met someone who was working with them, and I was doing polarity coaching. We decided to trade sessions. When it was my turn to get a session, it just blew me away. I was so touched by it that I decided I needed to learn how to work with them.
What do you cover in the book?
It is a lot more than just a how-to book. A lot of books just say how to do something. This has a lot more of the Tibetan philosophies that are part of what a sound healer would bring toward a modality, being they come from that culture. It's got some of the cultural philosophies that are the foundational principles of working with the instruments. It offers a clear idea of what's needed to learn and practice. It also includes a link to a one-hour instructional video that demonstrates methods.
What conditions or emotions can Tibetan bowl therapy help?
It can help anxiety and depression. There are the chakras (focal points in the body used in various meditation techniques). A lot of people who come to my workshops and want to integrate the work with what they're already doing, being color work or massage therapy. A lot of people just want to integrate sound into a modality that they're already working with. In the last chapter of the book, I explore colors, toning, power language and visualization.
How does the instrument calm people?
The instruments all have harmonics, and they're all tuned to a frequency of ohm, the vibrational pattern of perfection of the universe when it came into existence. Even though they have many different sounds and tones within them, they initiate the relaxation response very quickly. They work as internal opiates, so natural painkillers. They get people into a very deep meditative state. They work with brain waves entrainment, which means that the brain waves are actually entraining to the vibrational patterns of these instruments. What also happens on a biological level is when people hear these instruments, especially over time, the brain waves, the respiratory rates and the heart rates all begin to work in sync with each other rather than against each other. ... Like everything in life, we learn in repetition. As you listen to these instruments on a more regular basis, you're developing a cellular memory to that vibration of well-being.
Can you share any stories regarding the Tibetan bowls helping in certain situations? You've worked with incarcerated veterans with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, correct?
Before the treatment, there were people who were angry, unable to focus on anything and in a lot of psychological and emotional pain. The work was getting them to the place where they were able to own their own goodness aside from what they had done that were mistakes or anything negative, like drug use, theft and domestic violence. ... There was another part of them that was intact and basically the same as when they were born. ... A lot of them had trouble focusing. As soon as they closed their eyes, they were hearing bombs going off and seeing themselves in situations that were very traumatic. A lot of them, through sound, became into the present moment.