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How vocal sound positively affects every cell in our body and the cells of people in close proximity
The human voice has the power to fill a concert hall, without a microphone; the power to promote healing in ourselves and others; the power to transform thoughts and feelings into words and sounds to inspire others. The human voice also has the power to leave this Earthly realm and travel to the stars, as you will soon read.
Generating Amplified Thoughts
When we speak or sing or tone, we are actually generating amplified thoughts; thoughts that originate in our minds and give rise to electromagnetic signals contained within our brain. Yet those same thoughts become hugely amplified and transcribed into sound every time we speak, sing or tone. In this way, our thoughts can be shared with the world. But what if our words were transformed into light?
The light would zip through the atmosphere and carry our amplified thoughts to the stars. Is this some new high-tech science or maybe even science fiction? Actually it is science fact, although not commonly known. And you don't need fancy equipment to convert words or song to light; your voice is all you need.
The basic principles are straightforward and by the end of this article you will understand the special relationship between sound and light and how your voice can reach the stars. You will also learn how your voice speaks the language of cells that positively affects every cell in your body and the cells of people in your close proximity.
While scientists agree that sound and light are different phenomena, much confusion exists among the general public concerning the true relationship between these two forms of energy. For example, online articles often appear in which a particular sound frequency is multiplied by forty octaves in an attempt to identify its equivalent light 'color.' In the chart below, colors of light are shown alongside their corresponding Ångström numbers (named after the Swedish physicist Anders Jonas Ångström) and these are compared with frequencies of sound given in Hertz. Look, for example, at 392 Hertz, the musical note 'G,' shown as a deep red color. At first glance this artistic interpretation of sound as color appears valid until we realize that sound and light are in fact totally different forms of energy. It's rather like comparing apples with oranges; they are plainly different. In reality this attempt at comparing light colors with sound frequencies is fundamentally flawed. However, there is indeed an intriguing, almost magical, relationship between sound and light, although not in the way that is commonly believed.
The Nature of Sound
To build a foundation of understanding concerning the physics of sound, let us first define sound.
Sound in air is the transfer of periodic vibrations between adjacent colliding atoms or molecules.
That might sound rather grand but basically it simply means that when atomic particles bump into their neighbors they pass on their vibrations. (Remember that air is a mixture of gases in which most atoms pair up to create molecules while helium is comprised of individual atoms.) This transfer of vibrations between any two adjacent atoms or molecules, is known as 'sound.'
The energy in a sound event, for example someone toning, expands away from the mouth and nose equally in all directions, as a bubble. This sound bubble naturally expands at the speed of sound, which is 768 miles an hour at 20 degrees C at sea level, and its outer 'surface' is in a state of radial pulsation or oscillation, meaning that it is expanding and contracting. The bubble's pulsations are actually the same as those created by the vocal folds in the larynx. In fact, the pulsations of the bubble are the sound. At this point you might be thinking "But what about sound waves?" Actually, the model of 'sound waves' is incomplete as well as a misnomer because it refers to the graphical representation of the mathematical law of the sound energy. While the term 'sound waves' is correct in terms of its graphical representation it is not how sound actually propagates or travels.
Sound bubble versus sound wave
The concept of sound as a wave is simply a label used to describe the fact that sound bubbles pulsate in and out rhythmically. It is this pulsation of the bubble's outer surface that is typically illustrated as a wave-like graph.
Put differently, when teachers and scientists describe sound as a wave they are referring to its rhythmic pulsation depicted graphically, not its actual shape in space. The result of this confusion is that most people incorrectly visualize sounds wiggling their way through the air rather than visualizing beautiful, shimmering sound bubbles.
In the illustration above, a sound bubble has been halved to permit its internal structure to be seen. The sound event that created the bubble is in the center.
All sounds contain areas of high pressure and low pressure, called compressions and rarefactions. The illustration shows these areas as dense blue hemispheres for high pressure and pale blue hemispheres for low pressure.
If you look closely at the drawing closely you will see dotted lines rising out of the bottom half of the bubble and connecting with a wave graph in the middle. This illustrates clearly where the term 'sound waves' comes from: the wave-like graph of sound is a mathematical representation of an actual sound bubble. Many scientific textbooks illustrate the spherical nature of sound, even though they continue to use the term "sound waves" for acoustic energy with a bubble-like space form. A good example is the Master Handbook of Acoustics. The chapter heading on page 83 is: "Sound Waves in the Free Field”, yet on page 85 there is a helpful drawing showing the spherical nature of sound.1
Holographic Sound Principles
To build a deeper foundation of understanding, when sound travels through air, every atom or molecule in the path of the expanding sound bubble is involved in the process of passing on the sound vibrations, rather like the game where dominos are set up in a long row and each domino bumps into its nearest neighbor, and sets off a chain reaction of movement. In air, the vibrations that originate with the atoms and molecules in direct contact with the sound source pass on their vibrations to their nearest neighbors and the chain reaction begins, spreading out as a bubble of sound.
As an example, if a sound source produces a single frequency tone (for example when you make an 'oo' vowel sound with your voice) the periodic motion of every atom and molecule in the sound bubble will be of that same single periodicity and that single vibration will be passed on with each collision that occurs. On the other hand, if the sound is complex, with a multiplicity of frequencies of vibration, (for example if you make an 'ee' vowel sound, which is quite complex and rich in harmonics) the atoms and molecules will each carry this complex array of periodicities.
To better visualize how a single atom can carry such complex periodic motions, imagine holding an apple and moving it slowly back and forth. (Let's say that the apple represents an atom in the air surrounding your larynx).
Next imagine quickly wobbling the apple as it moves slowly back and forth. The apple/atom is now vibrating in two different ways simultaneously.
Now imagine that same principle extended until the apple/atom is moving in a hundred different ways simultaneously.
(Not easy to imagine, but I think the point is made). This is how atoms and molecules carry all the vibrations and uniqueness of a voice, or of any sound. And when an atom bumps into its nearest neighbor all of those different vibrations are transferred to the neighboring atoms.
The human voice, whether in speech or singing, is a good example of a complex sound source that contains many frequencies. What begins in the larynx as a small high pressure (fairly monotone) spherical pearl of sound energy, rapidly expands into the mouth and sinus cavities where complex nuances are added by the tongue, lips and resonance of the sinus spaces, adding to the complexity of the vibrations and forming a given word or sound.
The word began as a thought, but now that thought has been transcribed to a sound bubble that emerges from the mouth and nose. Its outer spherical edge shimmers due to every atom and molecule vibrating in unison. If you have a cold and your nose is blocked, the bubble emerges with a different tonal quality and the character of your voice will be modified accordingly. But either way, the data in the bubble is, effectively, an amplified thought.
How many atomic particles are needed to represent your unique voice? Amazingly the answer is 'one.' As mentioned above, a single atom can vibrate with all the complex vibrations that make your voice unique to you. Therefore, sound can be said to exhibit holographic principles because every atomic particle in a sound bubble contains all the vibrational data of the sound source.
One mathematical definition of 'holographic' (reported by Andrew Zimmerman Jones from original work by Gerard 't Hooft and Leonard Susskind) is that: The total information contained in a volume of space corresponds to an equal amount of information contained on the surface of that space.2 This definition precisely describes the sonic data within a sound bubble and at all points on its periphery; therefore, sound can be said to embody holographic principles.
In the illustration above a single sound bubble is seen emerging from the woman's mouth and nose. In reality this primary bubble would diffract backwards within a millisecond of its creation and the sound bubble would totally surround the woman's head; but for the sake of clarity only the primary bubble is shown. The bubble's surface pattern depicts the harmonic content (the timbre or tonal quality) of her voice.
Having summarized the nature of sound let us now explore the phenomenon of light in order to understand the special relationship between sound and light, which will lead to understanding how your songs reach the stars and how your voice speaks the language of cells.
The Nature of Light
Visible light is electromagnetism of a particular frequency or, to be more accurate, a range of frequencies. The chart at the end of the Introduction section of this article illustrates this point very well. Since light frequencies are such big numbers it is more convenient to express them in Ångströms, which is a measure of the distance moved by light as it pulsates and is commonly referred to as its 'wave length.' However, in common with sound, light usually propagates as a bubble so the term 'wave length' can be misleading. The only exception to the spherical nature of light is laser light, which generates what is termed "coherent light" in which all the vibrations of the magnetic energy are aligned or "in phase" with each other, whereas light in Nature could be termed "incoherent light" or "natural light" because its vibrations are randomly generated by the light source. All natural light propagates as a bubble, whereas coherent light propagates as a single ray.
Vocal collisions of atoms and molecules result in the creation of infrared light
Although the precise nature of electromagnetism is unknown to science, in essence, it is magnetism that is vibrating (although no one knows what magnetism is!). Light is created when static magnetism begins to vibrate sufficiently fast, or expressed differently, when static magnetism becomes 'modulated magnetism.' Every atom is surrounded by a magnetic shell--a magnetic force field--and when this force field collides with the force field around another atom two important things happen: first, there is a transfer of the periodic motions between the atoms--that we earlier defined as sound. The second, almost magical, thing that happens is that light is created. In fact, when collisions occur between atoms or molecules there must be a release of light, generally known as 'electromagnetic radiation.'
So, in a nutshell, light is created as atoms collide, but unlike sound, which needs a medium to travel in, the light radiates away from the site of the collisions without needing a medium; that is, light can travel through the vacuum of space.
If this all sounds rather technical please stay with me because what comes next is the key to how your songs reach the stars and speak the language of cells.
The frequency of light created by atoms as they bump into each other is a function of the temperature of the atoms (how fast they are vibrating individually and collectively). Light created by atomic collisions in which the temperatures are too low to create visible light will create infrared light. At even lower energy states, for instance with a gentle caress of the skin, hypothetically, microwave radio frequencies will be created.
This could be why caresses can feel like electricity: such gentle touches may spark low level microwaves into existence. On the other hand, when the temperature is extremely high it is well-tested theory that X-ray and Gamma-ray radiation is created. In simple terms, the physical temperature of an object determines the wavelength of the radiation it emits.3
We are now ready to provide the answer to the question, how our songs reach the stars. As mentioned earlier, sonic bubbles expand at approximately 768 miles an hour. Each collision within the sound bubble creates friction between the magnetic shells surrounding the atomic particles, which create heat, which is another name for infrared electromagnetism, otherwise known as light.
Rubbing hands together creates infrared light
Try this simple experiment: Rub your hands vigorously together and then place them over your closed eyes. You will feel warmth. The molecules that form the skin of your left hand slipped past the molecules that form the skin of your right hand. To be more accurate, the magnetic shells surrounding those molecules slipped past each other. The result is heat.
A similar phenomenon occurs every time you speak, sing or tone: trillions of atomic collisions not only carry your voice away through the air, they also create a tiny amount of heat, technically known as infrared light. The heat produced by your voice fluctuates in sympathy with the sound of your words. This simple mechanism transcribes your words into modulated infrared light that rushes away at the amazing speed of 186,000 miles per second.
While the acoustic energy in your voice bubble falls off rapidly with distance, it is not the case for the infrared bubble created by your voice. The infrared energy created by the sound of your voice propagates independently of air (remember that electromagnetism does not need a medium to travel in) and heat is not significantly attenuated by air particles. Therefore, the infrared bubble travels relatively unimpeded through the atmosphere to outer space, where theory tells us it will travel forever4 unless it encounters some dense matter. So, your words and songs should, one day, reach the stars.
At this point you might be wondering, if we can sing to the stars shouldn't the stars be able to sing to us? The stars do indeed bathe the earth in their 'song.' The same principle that transcribes our vocalized sounds to modulated infrared light (colliding atoms that create heat and carry sonic modulations) is also occurring in stars, and the stars are radiating their "songs" across the Universe in both the infrared and visible light spectrums.
Artist's impression of The James Webb Space Telescope. Image: NASA/ JPL
A branch of astronomy called asteroseismology5 is one in which scientists 'listen in' to the sounds of stars. Sounds created within the heart of a star can provide important data regarding the processes at work in its atomic furnace. By studying the 'music' of stars it has also become possible to discover exoplanets, in some cases planets that resemble Earth in terms of size and distance from the parent star.
The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), due for launch this year (2018), is designed to monitor the heavens primarily in the infrared spectrum and with astonishing sensitivity. Perhaps the JWST or some even more sensitive instrument of the future, may one day listen in to extraterrestrial life, not by a signal that was deliberately transmitted into space but one born of sounds that created infrared light.
Most people remain blissfully unaware that our words, songs and chants are rushing into space as modulated infrared light. Maybe someday, the very words or songs you utter today will be monitored and heard by non-human ears in a part of the galaxy far, far away.
The Therapeutic Power of Vocal Sound
The implications for knowing that your voice creates infrared light are profound because every cell in your body "sings" in the infrared spectrum of light.6
The electromagnetic component of cell-to-cell communication also occurs mainly within this spectrum, as the graphic below shows. Therefore, when we sing we are actually singing the language of cells, and not only our own cells but those of everyone who are in our close proximity.
Cell-cell communication occurs mainly in the infrared spectrum
Another aspect of vocal sound that CymaScope research has recently discovered, concerns cymatics, the science of making sound visible. Whenever sound encounters a membrane, a cymatic pattern is imprinted on the membrane's surface. Usually invisible to the unaided eye, such patterns can be rendered visible under special lighting conditions, rather like dusting a fingerprint on glass to make it visible, we 'dust' the membrane with light. The cymatic principle occurs at all scales, even in the microscopic realm, therefore, every cell in your body receives a cymatic pattern when you sing or are being sung to. We have begun to image such patterns in the CymaScope laboratory and initial experiments with microscopic water droplets revealed great beauty in the patterns that formed. A video of microscopic cymatics can be viewed on the CymaScope YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z0St42jfgMU
Cymatic patterns on microscopic water droplets
The biological mechanisms by which sound triggers the body's healing response are not yet known, but my working hypothesis concerns the uptake of sonic energy by cells and the stimulation of the cell's Integral Membrane Proteins, which project from the outer membrane of almost all cells.
IMP's have many functions, including the transport of food into the cell and the excretion of waste. One class of IMP, known as the Primary Cilia, is a vital feature of the cell. Primary Cilia7 are antenna-like structures that respond to electromagnetism as well as specific frequencies of sound. In a sense they act in a similar manner to tuning forks that have a particular resonant frequency and are maximally excited only at that specific frequency.
Illustration of Integral Membrane Proteins, resembling tuning forks
In some categories of illness the cells of a particular bodily system become quiescent, for example, due to physical trauma, the invasion of a pathogen or the presence of a toxic substance. This quiescent state is known as the G-0 phase of the cell cycle in which the cells of a particular bodily system are effectively asleep and not replicating, which throws the body out of balance and therefore creates illness. Cells that are in this deep sleep condition can exist in that state for very long periods.
To awaken the cells, sparking them into the G-1 phase, in which the cell prepares for replication, the medical literature suggests that either time (that is, more sleep) or nutrition is the required stimulus.8, 9
In my hypothesis the stimulation needed to awaken the cell is sound energy, whether vocal or from some other source. Sound energy enters the cell in two forms: the acoustic component and the infrared component, both acting to 'charge' the cell with energy. In addition, sound creates a cymatic pattern on the cell membrane, which gently massages the IMP's, including the Primary Cilia. These mechanisms, I hypothesise, are the fundamental principles that underpin sound therapy.
The cell cycle is a series of events that take place in a cell, leading to duplication of its DNA and cell division, creating two daughter cells
At the atomic level, flesh and blood consists of a delicate tracery of electromagnetic frequencies that harmonize with each other and manifest as the biological matter that comprises the components of our bodies. And like an orchestra in which the players tune their instruments to align with each other, living tissue, too, is held in an exquisitely harmonious balance. However, when disease or illness occurs it creates an imbalance in which one or more of the "players" in our cellular orchestra create discord and generate vibrations that are unnatural to our organism. This simple allegorical model contains important truths that I will expand upon in future articles.
Last, I'd like to mention the 3:2 musical ratio in the light of discoveries made by a Russian team, led by Elena S. Petukhova. Apart from the commonly known aspects of this ratio, it is less well known that this same ratio exists between frequencies of the second and third harmonics of an oscillating string, and by extension, of our vocal folds. In their 2017 paper, published by Elsevier, they discovered that complementary pairs of nitrogenous bases exist that feature 2 and 3 hydrogen bonds respectively.10 From this point of view, DNA is a chain of numbers, 3 and 2, of the hydrogen bonds. The implications of this discovery are that when we sing we are actually singing directly to the 'music' of our D.N.A. sequence. Petoukhov also discovered that the 3:2 ratio is mathematically related to the tensor family of genetic matrices and that if the square root from such a matrix is taken, the result is the 'golden matrix,' all elements of which are equal to the golden section. Thus, the ratio 3:2 and the golden section are intimately connected with our D.N.A. and with our vocal apparatus: we are actually singing a form of genetic music, music that brings healing to all life.
Master Handbook of Acoustics, fourth edition. F. Alton Everset, published by McGraw-Hill. Pages 83 & 85.
String Theory for Dummies, Andrew Zimmerman Jones and Daniel Robbins, Wiley Publishing Inc. Page 21.
NASA Science Beta: https://science.nasa.gov/ems/11_xrays
Department of Physics, University of Illinois. Does light travel forever? https://van.physics.illinois.edu/qa/listing.php?id=21368
University of Birmingham (UK). Asteroseismology. https://www.birmingham.ac.uk/research/activity/physics/astronomy/solar-and-stellar/asteroseismology.aspx
World Scientific: Biophoton Emission. https://doi.org/10.1142/S0217984994001266
PubMed: The primary cilium in cell signaling and cancer. E J Michaud, BK Yoder. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16818613
G0 phase of cell cycle. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G0_phase
G0 phase of cell cycle. Nutrition, Immunity and Infection, Prakash S. Shetty, published by CABA. Page 165.
I-Ching, dyadic groups of binary numbers and the geno-logic coding in living bodies. Zhengbing Hu, Sergey V. Petoukhov, Elena S. Petukhova.
Progress in Biophysics and Molecular Biology, Elsevier.