SOUND MUSIC THERAPY
Music as therapy at Brhaddhvani is a natural evolution. The holistic educational philosophy COMET makes it happen. The foundation elements in this system, in building the tonal and rhythmic aspects in the mind and body, brought with it fresh insights into music therapy as a discipline. Our experiments show that the objective exercises of COMET combining tone and rhythm balance and connect the right and left spheres of the brain, a cell rejuvenating act. This newfound experience brought with it creative means of using music a therapy. Ragas of Indian music are known to have therapeutic effects, but we have also found that the emotional impact of certain ragas on some subjects could be disturbing too. We have worked with subjects with multiple sclerosis, ASD, dyslexia, spastics, stammer and other mental impairments. These interactions have been enlightening.
AUTHENTIC VEDIC CHANTS
Vedic chants as sound principles both in terms of the text and tones handed down through millenniums bring amazing results. The three-note practice with Vedic texts as mediation to anchor the tones in the body is energizing and powerful. There are specific chants for specific ailments. Tonally contained and melodically restricted movements, but rhythmically complex structures in chants have such a calming effect when the mind is disturbed. Those with severe mental impairments have benefitted invariably from chanting. However, we need clinical analytical data.
Two spastic children, both adolescents, came regularly [to Brhaddhvani] for 6 months for music therapy. They were given exercises in music and rhythm from the COMET repertoire. Listening to the regular students practice had therapeutic effects. The spastic children’s restlessness gradually reduced. Their sense of rhythm improved. Their habitual patterns began changing. Their inhibitions, too, changed drastically. They began improving their social skills and self-confidence.
From the diary of Ms Brinda Jayaraman, psychologist