History of Music and Sound in Healing

Music and sound used as a healing tool is deeply rooted in ancient cultures and civilizations. In ancient Greece there was a saying, "Men have song as a physician for pain."  Westerners are reviving this ancient knowledge of the healing qualities in music.

Schools of Egypt and Greece considered healing and sound a highly developed sacred science. Ancient Greeks believed music to be an art capable of healing body and soul. The flute and lyre were used to treat illnesses such as gout and sciatica.

The Greek God of Medicine, Apollo, playing a golden lyre, was also the God of Music. Apollo was the God of Healing, teaching man medicine, the God of Light, the God of Truth, the Archer, aiming a silver bow. Apollo's task is to harness his chariot with four horses and drive the Sun across the sky.

Vocal sounds have been used by indigenous cultures for centuries as an integral part of healing practices. Music was used as a tool in assisting the healing process. When overcome by illness Native American Shamans use the voice in healing rituals by singing to oneself to facilitate healing.

The concept of "Sacred Sound" was used by ancient cultures. "Although the words for Sacred Sound changed from culture to culture, the basic meaning remained the same. In Christianity, Sacred Sound is referred to in the Bible as the Word. "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." John1:1. Sacred Sound was known in ancient China as 'Kung', or the cosmic tone. The ancient rashies, or seers, of India referred to Sacred Sound as Shabda." 2 "In India , it is said, the universe hangs on sound. Not ordinary sound, but a cosmic vibration so massive and subtle and all-encompassing that everything seen and unseen (including man) is filled with it." 3

"Pythagoras of Samos , a Greek mathematician, philosopher, and musician, conceived of the universe as a vast musical instrument. He called the Sacred Sound of the universe "music of the spheres". It was Pythagoras' view that sound was the link between the gods and man." 4 Kabbalists chant specific vowel sounds that connect the chanter with the energies of the Divine. The Gregorian chants in early Christianity used special melodies and harmonies in preparing for and accessing a heightened sense of divinity.

"The Mayan shamans taught the creation of light through vocal harmonics. There were 'special' rooms inside their pyramids that were used to create light in, using the voice to create a high frequency of sound that could be elevated into the spectrum of light, the Mayans were able to turn a dark chamber into one of radiant light." 5

Hindu Ayurvedic medicine has used the voice to balance and re-align chakras for thousands of years. The Bija Mantras, called seed mantras, are metaphors for the origination, or cause of things. 'Hum' is a Bija mantra associated with the throat chakra. To find the Sacred Sound within..hum!

Written by Maya

1 John Bealieu: Music and Sound in the Healing Arts,(New York: Station Press, 1987),p. 35.
2 David Reek: Music of the Whole Earth, (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1977),p.5.
3 John Bealieu: Music and Sound in the Healing Arts,(New York: Station Press, 1987),p. 35
4 Human Voice: 9waysmysteryschool.tripod.com/sacredsoundtools/id10.html.


"The kids and I really do love the book and music. Emma recites the whole  story with all four 'sing and hums' to herself before bed. It's wonderful." 
- Erika


Purchase the Sing & Hum
CD, Book, & Finger Puppet

Current Events

Ronald McDonald House

Sing and Hum will be visiting two Ronald McDonald House's in the North Carolina Triangle area each month.  They will be in Chapel Hill on the first Wednesday and in Durham on the first Friday of every month to bring the inspiring music and message of Sing and Hum to the children and families.  Books and CD's will be donated to all who attend.

Ronald McDonald Houses
Chapel Hill and Durham, NC


©2007-2011 Sing and Hum

site by Multi-Channel Marketing and Lowlande Web Design

secure websites