by Edward Farnham
Long recognized as emblematic of the primal creative force, sound embodies the essence of vibration, the back and forth pendulum swing of yin and yang, male and female, the dual universe. It travels through air and informs our minds, but water is an even better medium for the dispersion of sonic vibration. It flows through our emotional bodies and reaches our higher selves and vice versa. It is a messenger that connects and binds us together from our material manifestation to the ultimate eternal consciousness of our essential nature.
Through meditation and other intentionally utilized methods of connection to spirit on the human and universal quest to reunite with Truth, Himalayan monks refined the use of specially concocted metal alloys to speak in sound to all levels of natural incarnation. The alloys can vary according to their purpose but usually include copper, gold, and even pure steel from the asteroids that bombard the roof of the world. With these metals, singing bowls, gantas, ting shas, and other sacredly conceived instruments are painstakingly fashioned by monks as part of their own spiritualization process. The metallurgy is not of the high tech nature used in modern techniques but originates in the antediluvian spiritual knowledge of the races that more perfectly embodied their godlike origins and could wield more of the great powers that were forgotten in the fall from grace.
I will sound the singing bowls, other sacred instruments, and perhaps a gong at Life Force Arts as a way of giving back to the wonderful organization that teaches me so much. In so doing, I hope to allow listeners the chance to ride those sound waves back to their truer soul selves and realign with the blueprints of who they are, embody once again the perfectly functioning Self, surf the soul to see what healings or progress can be attained.
The spiritual journey is often gradual and beset by setbacks, but we all eventually reach the goal. How much we learn by pain or joy can often be tweaked by grasping the messages from our internal teachers, communing more frequently with Light. I have experienced the unavoidable extremes of dualistic existence and was fortunate enough to choose a path that led to connection, the expansion of my cognitive mind and daily experience of reality on an exponential scale within. I often stray as part of the lessons im learning this time around, but these ancient technologies never fail to quickly remove me to my more blissful nature, an empowerment that makes the shadows in my understanding flee from the light of day, often as though they never existed except in my own rampant delusions. May we who are drawn to the great mystery be eased of our troubles through these god given channels.
I first became involved with the sacred instrument through the reknowned teacher and healer Richard Rudis, Sonam Dorje, who has traveled extensively through the Himalayan mountains and other nations that employ these consciouness refining techniques. He has taught for many years all across the US and honors us here in chicago many times a year on his peripatetic journey to aid in the realization of all souls. He conducts his famed “gong baths,” and teaches with the exquisite ancient instruments he also had for sale.
Another great influence in realizing and implementing the huge powers of sound was Namadeva, Thomas Ashley-Farrand, one of the worlds top authorities on Sanskrit mantra. His many classes, books, recordings, and rituals still available everywhere introduced and fostered a totally unforeseen and magical world of seed sounds and orated spells for influencing every aspect of my experience. A truly great and now ascended master, Namadeva has now been succeeded by the equally brilliant and fascinatin Margalo, his wife and fellow traveler on the spiritual path. I fully intend to use mantra as an integral part of my presentation.
Edward Farnham has studied numerous spiritual and healing techniques, including Himalayan bowls and sound healing with Richard Rudis, and mantra with Thomas Ashley-Farrand and his wife, Margalo or Satyabhama, two of the foremost experts on Hindu mantra in the world. Edward is a singer with the Chicago Gay Men’s Chorus (www.cgmc.org), and a painter who attempts to use the creative force as a vehicle to the divine.