Susan Hale
from: Susan Hale
Category: Sound Healing

The Harmonic Hum

In the beginning Spider Woman hummed life into being. Through her song she shaped the world. Mountains, rivers, elm trees and oaks came into form. Human development shares the same metaphor as this Laguna Pueblo myth. Humming is a universal sound, one of the first sounds we make while breast feeding. “M” is a sound associated with the Mother realm. By humming this first lullaby she lulls her children to sleep. Consider the many different words for mother around the world: Mama, Amma, Madre, Mutter, Mater, Ma. “Mmm,” is a sound of bonding that transcends species. Cows and sheep bellow or bleat a deep low “Mmm” after giving birth to signal that it is time to nurse. “M’ is the automatic sound of satisfaction, of a body saying that a chocolate covered strawberry is delicious. “M” is a connecting sound. A good therapist knows this instinctively and has a variety of ways to say “Um Hmmm” to let their clients know that they are understood. 

“M” is the only letter in the English alphabet that is internal. “M’ is a nourishing sound made with the lips closed which keeps tones circulating inside the mouth and into the body cavity, feeding the brain and quieting the nervous system. Place your hand on the top of your head while you hum and you will feel it immediately begin to vibrate. Humming helps clean the brain. Try humming the next time you feel stressed, scared or disconnected.

“M” also vibrates the nasal cavity. The Temple of Man in Luxor, Egypt is a map of the human body. According to the research of R.A. Schwaller de Lubicz evert part of the temple is related to a different anatomical part. The Holy of Holies at Luxor corresponds to the inner recesses of the nose. Its Egyptian name is shtyt which means “sacred” or “hidden.” “M’s” neighbor “N” also brings the nose into resonance and, through its correspondence to the sympathetic and vagus nerves, helps us achieve altered states of consciousness through the repeated stimulation brought by chanting these sounds.1 In Hinduism one of the most sacred words is “Om.” Chanting “Om” connects us with the universal hum that moves through all life and opens channels to experience our connection with the Divine.

“M’ is a primordial sound from which other sounds are generated. Humming while changing the position of the tongue inside the mouth generates harmonics which many sound healers believe to be necessary for healing. Here is a simple exercise I’ve developed to explore to power of the hum for self-exploration and healing. It is a wonderful exercise to do as a prelude to meditation.

 

Harmonic Hum

Find a quiet place to sit and make sure your phone is turned off.

Light a candle.

Place a small drop of essential oil on the palm of your hands and rub them together. As you breathe in the fragrance set an intention. Keep your hands over your mouth.

Close your eyes.

Close your lips and hum into the whole body by dropping the jaw and feeling the resonance move downwards. Hum into your hands.

Hum on ‘M’ sound. Listen and feel where and how you feel the vibration.

Add ‘O’ internally and play with the two sounds.

Keeping the lips closed experiment with moving the tongue inside the mouth while also changing the shape of the mouth and hear harmonics begin to emerge. Explore. Where do you feel these sounds vibrating? Notice how they resonate.

Move the tongue up and down the palate and notice how this automatically changes the sound and the harmonics.

Continue to explore.

At the end of the practice gather the saliva in your mouth and swish it and then swallow in three portions with the intention that the saliva has collected the sonic blossoms and healing properties of the sounds and drink it as if you were taking in a nourishing healing liquid. Imagine sending it throughout your body, focusing on those areas in need of healing. 

Take your hands away from your mouth and move them over your aura. If there is a place in need of healing place them there.

 

Sit quietly and listen for guidance.

 

Like Spider Woman we can begin the day by humming, renewing our world and opening up to new possibilities of an expanded consciousness and deeper connection with the world around and within us.

 

1 John Anthony West, The Serpent in the Sky: Wisdom of Ancient Egypt, Thames and Hudson, New York, 2000, p. 89.

 

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