You may be thinking "What is she referring to with the Big 5?" It is not the five personality traits, nor is it the popular sporting goods outlet. I'm referencing the 5 levels of energy in the universe when observing vibration and how it relates to sound healing. They include (from least to greatest): Frequencies, Tones or Timbres (combinations of frequencies), Musical Intervals and Chords (combinations of Tones or Timbres), Music (combinations of Tones, Timbres, Musical Intervals and Chords over time) and Energy.
1. Pure Frequencies Pure frequencies are individual tones. An example would be by using a tuning fork, a crystal bowl or a tone generator. The typical frequency range is from 20 to 20,000 cycles per second.
There are also some sounds that are not technically “frequencies.” This is a whole set of sounds that are actually incomplete sounds. In physics, these sounds are called “noise.” You've probably heard of or owned a devise playing "white noise." When my daughter was born, she had a stuffed lamb that played a variety of these options to assist with sleep such as the ocean, rivers and streams, waterfalls, the wind, whispers etc. Other instruments include shakers, rattles, and of course - the breath. These non-frequencies are extremely powerful for breaking up stuck frequencies such as emotions or post-traumatic stress.
2. Tones or Timbres A timbre or tone is a combination of pure frequencies. Different sounds have different combinations of frequencies, or harmonics, that makeup the sound. The particular array of harmonics account for all of the different instrument sounds, including vocal and nature sounds. Because tones and timbres are combinations of frequencies they are more powerful.
3. Musical Intervals and Chords Combinations of frequencies and timbres create musical intervals, which create different states of consciousness. Multiple sounds (frequencies or timbres) create a chord, which create even more complex states of consciousness. Musical intervals and chords are even more powerful than timbres because they are combinations of timbres.
4. Music Music is pure frequencies and timbres changing over time. When we add time, we create rhythms. These have specific effects on the heart and brainwaves. Most importantly, changing frequencies and timbres create a “musical flow.” The musical flow in music is the most important aspect of music, and is especially effective when it matches (or becomes) the same as the “flow” that is found in nature. Music is even more powerful than musical intervals and chords, because they are now moving and changing over time creating a flow.
5. Energy Energy is the most powerful of the whole hierarchy. Many therapists offer energy healing (without sound) which can be highly effective. Actually, a friend and fellow practitioner Barbara E. Savin, has large success with this method. The difference with sound healing, is that both the energy and sound are combined. Adding yet another layer by including an "intention” or a prayer to sound, can achieve powerful results. The quality of a person’s consciousness will drastically affect the energy that comes through their music. Just as with music, the quality of the flow of the energy is the most important aspect.
Think about when you are watching American Idol, and a contestant sings a song flawlessly while hitting all the notes in perfect tune. It sounds beautiful, but doesn't bring up any emotion. Then another contestant follows, singing the exact same song. This time with added intention or emotion, and it gives you goose bumps and brings you to tears. That is the power of energy and the contestant's consciousness coming through the music. It is important to differentiate and focus on the Big 5, because each level affects us differently physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.