Can you meditate with music? The answer is yes! Sound healing therapy uses music and instruments to improve a person's physical and/or emotional health.
If you need a few instruments that can help clear your mind and ease your soul, these are the top ones that health and music professionals from around the globe use as go-to tools for clients in need of meditation and relaxation.
Many of these products can be found online for very affordable prices by shopping on a site like Amazon or Walmart.
I've included Amazon affiliate links below, where you will be able to buy any instrument you'd like, but don't feel pressured to buy from an online shop! Many of these can also be found in your local music stores.
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The sound of a singing bowl has calming effects that many use to provide clarity and peace of mind when trying to meditate. It's very easy to learn as a beginner and is often made from quite durable and high-quality material. They also make for great art pieces!
Meditative music often includes the calming sounds of a wooden flute to lull you away from your stress and worries. Flutes are used in Native American culture for celebrations, spiritual purposes, community gatherings or powwows, and general entertainment.
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The hammered dulcimer is one of the most popular relaxing instruments to play since it's easy to make a pleasant sound right from the start of your practice.
It gives you such a feeling of majestic and positive energy without needing practice for days or months. It's quite large and pricey, though!
If you know how relaxing the sound of rain can be to people, then you already know how effective a rainstick can be when it comes to meditation and entering a relaxed state.
They're quite simply made, so they can be very easy and affordable to get your hands on. You can buy rain sticks in varying sizes from around 15 to 50 inches long.
Harmony balls, also called medicine balls, make a very basic yet effective tool for meditation in the world of music.
They do more for your stress in terms of physical touch and pressure points when compared to their musical properties, but they do give off a fun chime sound when you shake them.
A tuning fork is another simple yet effective musical tool that's a must-have when you're in need of meditation.
The sound waves from tuning forks vibrate, travel through your body along energy pathways, and affect your sense of balance, space, memory, and healing. It's super small and affordable as well!
There's no need to speak about how beautiful and relaxing the sounds of a harp can be! The instruments are gentle and sweet, like a lullaby. But a lot of people don't realize the variety of different sizes that harps can come in.
Most people picture those big, beautiful, yet heavy harps that professionals play at opera houses, but you can actually get a small yet quality harp for around $100 if you know where to look.
Wind chimes are a perfect musical instrument you don't even need to play to reap the benefits. The wind will do the job for you when it comes to beautiful and relaxing sounds!
When we hear wind chimes and get in our perfect zone, our heart rate lowers, our breathing slows down, and our muscles relax.
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Similar to wind chimes, Chinese wind gongs also make for great meditation aids. They are available in a range of sizes, with each size having its own distinct sound.
The smaller gongs have a higher pitch, while larger ones have a lower and more resonant pitch to them. The rush of overtones that gongs give you can bring you a rush of positive energy!
To play this long wind instrument, you will need to learn how to do lip trills. Lips trills help you to relax muscles in your larynx, get a more even flow of air from your breath support, and warm up your vocal cords.
These are also referred to as raspberries, lip bubbles, or lip buzzes, and they really do a number on the player in terms of increased relaxation and better breathing habits. Playing the didgeridoo has also been linked to reducing snoring!
Playing steel tongue drums is also another popular choice for those looking to meditate with musical instruments.
This simple and appealing instrument can relieve your stress and bring positive energy into your life. You can play the drum with the mallet or simply with your hands, and it's great for beginners to pick up very fast.
The Kalimba is a meditative type of piano that can help you feel more at rest, focus your thoughts, fantasize, and find a state of mindfulness.
This African instrument has some deeply meditative properties and can be great for healing mantras. It's another easy instrument to pick up that's suitable for all ages. They are also quite portable and affordable!
According to board-certified music therapist Christine Stevens, "Drumming may be the oldest form of active meditation known to humanity."
The djembe is a very popular drum that is quite often used in meditative musical pieces. Listening or playing the djembe is a great choice for calming your mind, body, and soul.
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Create a serene and dedicated space: Set up a peaceful and dedicated space for your meditation practice. Arrange your musical instruments in an organized and aesthetically pleasing manner to create a calming atmosphere.
Start with deep breathing: Before playing any instrument, begin your meditation session with deep breathing exercises. Inhale deeply, hold for a few seconds, and exhale slowly. This helps you relax and prepare your mind and body for the meditative experience.
Experiment with different instruments: Explore and experiment with their sounds during meditation. Each instrument has its unique qualities and vibrations, which can evoke different emotions and states of relaxation. Find the ones that resonate with you and enhance your meditation practice.
Focus on repetitive and soothing rhythms: When playing musical instruments during meditation, focus on creating repetitive and soothing rhythms. These repetitive patterns can help induce a meditative state and guide your mind into a deeper state of relaxation.
Use instruments for sound immersion: Instead of actively playing an instrument, you can use certain instruments, like singing bowls or gongs, to immerse yourself in their resonant sounds. Allow the vibrations to envelop you, focusing on the sensations and allowing them to guide you into a meditative state.
Maintain mindful awareness: As you play or listen to the instruments, maintain mindful awareness of the present moment. Pay attention to the sounds, vibrations, and sensations that arise, without judgment or attachment. Let the music be a vehicle for grounding yourself in the present.
Gradually transition to silence: Towards the end of your meditation session, gradually transition from playing or listening to the instruments to silence. Allow the fading sounds to merge into stillness, and sit in quiet contemplation or continue with a silent meditation practice.
By incorporating these tips into your meditation practice with musical instruments, you can deepen your experience, promote relaxation, and explore new dimensions of mindfulness and self-awareness.
As a session singer, writer, and producer that has worked with over 200 clients to provide high-quality jingles, singles, and features, Yona spends her time creating and marketing new music and helpful resources for creators. Her recent collaborations include work with PBS Sound Field, Tribe of Noise, and the National Black Chamber of Commerce. Check out Yona’s latest releases on her Spotify, her Youtube and share if you like it!
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