USING BINAURAL BEATS TO REACH THE THETA STATE
The brain is constantly producing different brainwave frequencies depending on its state of mind.
There are five main frequency brain waves: Gamma, Delta, Beta , Alpha and Theta.
The theta state is the ideal state for meditation… but is beneficial for other things too.
Theta brain waves measure at 4 to 7 Hz. The mind slip into this state when you’re barely conscious like just after awakening or before sleeping.
There are many who can set their minds into this meditative state at will. Some people use it for self-hypnotism. Others use it for creative clarity, or improved problem-solving skills and learning abilities. No matter your reason, meditating in the Theta state is tremendously beneficial.
The brain slips into the theta state when deep meditation is reached. But the problem is that it takes a great deal of practice to reach this mindset.
But binaural beats can quickly help you reach the theta state by silencing internal chatter, relaxing the mind and opening up the doors to the deepest levels of meditation.
Nowadays, with the help of binaural entrainment frequencies nearly anybody can reach the theta state quickly… as if they were a Zen master.
Entrainment in Action
One of the reasons why binaural beats works is through the science of entrainment.
Entrainment occurs when our internal bodily rhythms sync to a stronger external rhythm (in this case, binaural beats).
It’s a law of Physics: when 2 objects are entrained with each other, they expend less energy.
Entrainment was first discovered by physicist Christian Huygens in the 17thcentury.
Hygens was the inventor of the ‘grandfather clock’ (a clock with a swinging pendulum) and had a workshop full of them in different sizes.
He made the discovery of entrainment when he noticed that his clocks swinging pendulums would always sync together.
To test if this was always the case, he would purposely set each pendulum in motion at different rates, but when he returned to his workshop the next day, he would find they had always shifted their rhythm together in synchronicity.
Entrainment happens in a variety of different ways.
If you take a tuning fork and strike it, then move it towards another tuning fork – the unstruck fork will begin to vibrate too.
Or a singer’s high pitched voice causing a wine glass to break (the wine glass shatters because the resonance of the singer’s voice entrains the glass to vibrate at a rate that it can’t sustain).
Entrainment happens in biology too.
It is this phenomenon that causes female roommates menstrual cycles to sync together.
Or fireflies that blink together at the same time.
Or the resetting of the internal body clock – after a very long plane flight.
Our body reacts to entrainment all the time. Our breathing rate, heart rate and brain waves are always in sync with each other.
It’s for this reason that when you first learn to meditate, you will always be told to concentrate on your breathing. This is because deep, long breaths will lower your heart rate, and in-turn entrains your brain to a different brain wave state.
Your body will entrain itself to your surroundings too. Next time you are surrounded by noisy machinery or stuck in heavy traffic or at a noisy bar, count your heart rate. Then try counting your heart rate when you are sitting in a quiet peaceful environment and compare the difference.
How Do Binaural Beats Work?
The way the brain is affected depends on the varying frequencies of each tone. Each ear listens to different frequencies via headphones.
This may sound strange but is the basis of binaural beats. The right ear my listen to a tone of 300Hz while the left ear listens to the same sounds but at a slightly different frequency of 307Hz.
The brain picks up on the difference between the two ears which in this example is: 7Hz (left ear 300 Hz, right ear 307 Hz). This 7 Hz difference is deciphered by the brain as a “third sound”. This third sound (7Hz) in this case is the theta state and is what the brain will become entrained to.
For the science to work, the frequencies of the tones in each ear must be below 1000Hz for the beating to be noticeable. Also, the difference between the two frequencies must be small (no more than 70 Hz), otherwise the two-tone sounds will clash and come out sounding separate, and thus the binaural effects are lost.
Binaural beats have created much interest to those in the neuro-physiological world where there is always ongoing research investigating how certain frequencies affect the mind and body.
What is the frequency of Theta?
Theta waves – normally adjusted to 4 – 8 Hz which is ideal for the deep meditative state and “birds eye” problem-solving. Ideal for tapping into the deepest levels of your creative side.
Awaken Creativity with Binaural Beats
Our creative thoughts need the freedom to explore and be free of inhibitions. These inhibitions are usually blocked by the logical thinking of the Beta wave brain state.
Binaural beats sync the brain to a desired state of relaxation. This causes emotions and lateral thinking to subside and allow the spiritual side to prevail.
Participants are encouraged to find a quiet spot to relax. Also encouraged is the posture of laying flat and listening to the binaural beats with headphones. It is important, however, not to become too comfortable as you do not want to fall asleep. It is, for this reason, it is recommended not to use a pillow. If you are familiar with yoga, the lotus position is also effective.
This is the best way to harness the quiet energy that causes an individual to be in total relaxation mode. When this level of deep relaxation is reached then the brain takes over and the creative “juices” start to flow.
The theta state is associated with crystal clear emotional intelligence and naturally lowers cortisone levels and decreases anxiety. This powerful state of mind boosts serotonin as well as the immune system.
The mode of soul searching, mind blockages, brainstorming, are heightened so that an individual can now tap comfortably into their creative abilities with the new “powerful” mindset.
Some of the more commonly recorded physical effects of this mindset are as follows:
- The inability to move freely due to the body feeling heavier
- Total relaxation from head to toe.
- A level of separation between the conscious and the subconscious is apparent.
- Levels of anxiety, stress, and tension evaporate.
- Sometimes the feeling of sedation or no feeling at all is recorded.
Through the science of entrainment, the brain synchronizes to the beat frequency, allowing a user to slip into a desired state of meditation quickly.
Depending on a user’s preference, one can use raw, pure tones or a track that has been mixed with sounds of nature and/or a guided meditation to help an individual more effectively reach the desired deep levels of meditative state.
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People who shouldn’t use binaural beats:
People who suffer from seizures – Because seizures are triggered by unnatural brain stimuli, the repeated pulsation of sound frequencies is best avoided.
Pregnant women – It is recommended to wait until your child is born before engaging in binaural entrainment therapy.
Children – Although parents may want their child to have every advantage they can in life, binaural entrainment therapy should be avoided as children are more susceptible to seizures. Although unlikely to cause an epileptic episode, it is wise to play it safe and refrain from letting children use binaural beats.
Those who have heart problems or wear a pacemaker – because the heart becomes entrained to the mind and slows down during binaural therapy, it is wise to first consult your doctor before you make binaural beats a daily habit.
Those who need to concentrate on an activity – Because binaural beats can easily cause one to slip into a trance-like state, it is discouraged to engage in activities that require concentration such as driving or operating heavy machinery. It is for obvious reasons one should wait until the prospect of falling asleep is not a possible fatal experience.