The Sound of Healing: A Personal Journey Through The Sonic Landscape of Dreamtribe Tribe

by | January 30, 2013 | Articles, Musicians, Performance, Theater, and Dance

by Shantal

As a dancer, music has always played a prevalent role in my life. Music and
dance are almost symbiotic in nature: sound inspiring movement and movement
creating the very rhythms and beats to which I dance.  Music communicates
directly to my Soul, weaving together themes of celebration, creative
expression, love, relaxation, freedom, and community.  It’s an open canvas
inviting me to dance, to let go, to dream, and to be inspired.  It is grounding
and liberating all at once.

Sound always affects me and moves me in the
most profound ways. Yet, it wasn’t until about three years ago, when I attended
my first sound healing event, that I further discovered the power of sound as an
extraordinary vehicle for mind/body/spirit healing and transformation.

At a time when I had been exploring various healing modalities, I was driven by my
curiosity and by my unique interest in the sensory, experiential nature of this
event.  I had no idea what to expect.  Halfway through the session, I was
completely transfixed – absorbing every delicious sonic vibration into the very
core of my being. As the thunder of the gong drowned out the incessant chatter
in my mind, I was instantly propelled into an exquisite, meditative

All thoughts now fading into oblivion, my body became one with
the sound: each cell seemingly pulsated in perfect synergy with the vibrating
sounds emanating from this fascinating instrument. I felt euphoric and deeply
serene.  I was utterly awe-struck.

Since that day, sound took on a new
form and meaning for me: it became a nourishing and purifying super-vitamin for
my Soul.  Sound healers everywhere had found a new convert.

I had always
craved music as a means to move, to relax, to entertain, and to release, but I
had never fathomed the transcendent possibilities inherent in this mystical art,
which has created truly magical experiences cultivating my awareness and my
growth. I had discovered a beautiful new realm uniting my three loves: artistic
expression, healing, and spirituality. It’s the ultimate synthesis – the glue
connecting me to Mother Earth while also transporting me to ethereal

Thereafter, I attended various sound healing events throughout
Chicago, exploring the celestial and primordial sounds of crystal bowls,
rain-sticks, chimes, didgeridoos, and drums, to name a few.  Who knew that these
musical odysseys could captivate all of my senses and catapult me to beautiful
innerscapes?  Each soulful symphony reflected the inner harmony of my Spirit
responding in tune to the beat of the Universe’s own harmony.

fascination and wonder extended to the musicians creating this sacred music
themselves: they are the human instruments of this divinely inspired creation.
Through the grace of Spirit, they become the true vessel for Spirit to shine and
express the beauty of life through them.  With each melodious note, they ascribe
meaning and give shape to the artistic visions born within them, and with each
composition, they chronicle their inner experiences and invite us to tap into
the tune of our own inner drumbeat.

Music is an incredibly powerful
means for communicating – a rhythmic device that helps us fall from the outside
in.  Just as musicians become a clear channel for allowing the sacred sounds to
flow through them, so must the listeners allow the sonic vibrations to enter
them deeply.  In so doing, we engage in a sacred process of co-creation – a
reciprocal, harmonic conversation and ritual of sorts, where we honor the sounds
as they honor us.

Through the art of hearing, we merge into the cosmic
currents of sound. Each vibration becomes alive, enabling us to feel the pulse
of life and energy flow throughout our very beings. The musicians and their
sonic creations are merely the creative muses and guides pointing the way to
wondrous journeys and healing.  By opening our hearts, accessing our intuition,
and surrendering to the mystery of the unknown, we can use these sonic portals
to transcend the world of form and shift into new rhythms that reflect our
authentic beat.

In my ever-present quest to experience new opportunities
for sound healing, one day, I was serendipitously led to Dreamtime Tribe at the
Life Force Arts Center (LFAC). Carefully laying down my yoga mat and arranging
my pillows all around me, I nestled into my small cocoon of comfort ready for my
next journey into bliss.

With Arek’s soft, lilting voice inviting us to
focus on our breath, I brought my awareness into my body and shifted into the
present moment.  Closing my eyes, soft chimes and crystal bowls ushered me in
like a warm blanket enveloping me in a quiet space of peaceful surrender.  Body
and breath now rising and falling in harmony with the delicate, celestial sounds
around me, my whole being slowed down, eagerly awaiting my astral “tune

The weekend leading up to this grand event had been one of many
profound visions and self-realizations – an energetic vortex of spiritual and
emotional cleansing via prophetic dreams and transforming real-life
experiences.  So, by the time I arrived at LFAC, I was ripe for fully
integrating Self into Spirit: my heart, body, and mind were buzzing with
energy.  Like flower seeds in the Earth patiently awaiting spring’s arrival, I
was ready to break past the restrictive confines of winter’s cold and dreary
gloom and burst forth in full bloom.

And so it was that, with each note
that followed, I could feel all the tension in my muscles releasing one by one
as my body melted into the ground beneath me.  As the earthy, tribal sounds
began to play, they pierced my invisible walls of resistance, quieting my mind
and filling me with the soothing warmth of the Sun’s radiant

Ambient music infused the air as Arek, Mark, and Michael began
creating a rich mixture of indigenous and celestial sounds with their
didgeridoo, singing bowls, chimes, flutes, and percussive instruments.
Experimental in form, Dreamtime Tribe introduces innovative structures through a
simultaneous layering of diverse sounds, combining slow, repetitive rhythms with
progressive or sudden shifts in tone.  Ancient, tribal beats are juxtaposed with
spacey, ethereal notes, producing an intoxicating composition that is both raw
and spellbinding and allows the listener to seamlessly float in and out of
consciousness.  Their music strikes a perfect balance of sensory stimulation,
mental relaxation, energetic alignment, and sacred connection.

For the
next hour and a half, I would journey throughout this sonic landscape and be
transported far beyond my mind and deep into my heart.  In this sacred space,
time became an elusive construct where sound embodied the single, unifying force
connecting each one of us in a dream-like trance.  We were a community bound
together by invisible sound waves – exploring, connecting, dreaming, and
celebrating through art and transformation.

As Dreamtime Tribe’s cosmic
symphony of multi-part harmonies slowly built up into a crescendo, colorful
imagery danced around in my mind’s eye:  I was here and yet so distant from this
space.  My body – now a receptive vessel – was more like a quiet observer who
stayed behind as I felt my Spirit fly off into another realm.  Like a bird set
free from its cage, I was ready to explore this sonic adventure.

high above the clouds, I saw myself sitting along the shoreline.  The gritty
sand formed a damp cushion beneath me as the ocean water lapped around my feet,
and a soft, warm breeze caressed my bare skin.  I stretched my hand out towards
my lover as we engaged in a loving Tantric ritual: our bellies rose and fell
together in tune with the ambient sounds around me while I fed him fresh morsels
of exotic island fruits.  All of my senses engaged in a fiery aliveness, I felt
firmly rooted to the earth in this foreign land.  Yet, back at LFAC where my
physical body lay, I suddenly sensed the floor beneath me tilting.

an intruder, the thoughts emerged:  I “knew” I had not moved, and, yet, I felt
my body twitching and turning.  My entire right side seemed to be spiraling up –
lifted by some sheer, magnetic force.  Fear settled in momentarily as my
monkey-mind struggled and resisted the journey, sensing that its illusory,
iron-grip control was now rapidly slipping away.  With a strange mixture of
ecstatic awe and slight trepidation, I called upon my Spirit to carry me

All at once, I melted into the sound, becoming one with the
rhythm, as every cell of my being began to resonate with the mystical music of
Dreamtime Tribe. Succumbing to this indefinable sonic flight, my Spirit soared.
Filled with a wondrous sense of well-being, ancestral rhythms hastened their
beat – pulsating, vibrating, and coursing through my body.  They created an
invisible chord safely anchoring me to the ground as I set my imagination free
and wholeheartedly embraced the purity of this moment.  The Universe seemed
alive with melody as the music moved in and out of my “conscious

At this time, my Spirit began to dance. I was surrounded by
what seemed like an Aborigine tribe. My body swayed and stomped to the
indigenous beats. Inside, I could feel my heartbeat mimic the percussive sounds
as I outwardly whirled and twirled around the sacred fire now before

Repetitive chords created a trance-like state as I danced in this
magical ritual honoring Self and Mother Earth. Sacred chanting droned in the
background, inviting body and Spirit to align with the sacred sounds.  A
rhythmic conversation was born between dancer and musicians – much like the
silent conversation between those playing for Dreamtime Tribe.  Like silent,
astral whispers, sonic vibrations danced to and fro, jumping from one instrument
to the next: each musician intuitively connected to one another through a
soulful collaboration epitomizing the beautiful synergy between art and sound –
co-creation in the NOW.

Turning back towards the red, Southwestern
desert, I saw the landscape shimmer with a luminescent glow as I stepped forth
into the fire that would burn away all my “dis-ease.”  The purity of Dreamtime’s
sound continued to wash over me as I shed my darkened ashes and stepped over
into the other side.  A vortex of energy shot sparks of fiery bliss up my spine,
and, like a phoenix rising, I was re-born – floating in a sea of unconditional

The restorative power of sound had once again culminated in a
moment of ecstatic transcendence.  I’d been transformed – touched and graced by
sound.  I was completely mesmerized and felt profound gratitude for this
mysterious, expressive art created by these three men before me who had just
gifted us with their divinely inspired and heartfelt musical fusion of

As the music slowed down, I could hear Arek’s gentle whispers
inviting our spirits back into this space – asking us to re-join our bodies.
Lying there, I begin to find my way back by wiggling my fingers and my toes.  My
body begins to stir.  Serenity fills my being like a lush, velvet blanket.  I
lie there in quiet contemplation – reflecting and assimilating what just
transpired, as my body is consumed with the raw intensity of emotions and energy
that I’ve just released.

A deep peace quickly follows – boundless joy
beams out of my heart center like a lotus flower unfolding.  The music of
Dreamtime Tribe continues to flow through me like liquid, golden energy
circulating throughout my entire being.  I am glowing with pure Light and

As I step forth to greet them, I am shining – radiant to the core
– and, with one small step, I express my deep appreciation and ask about their
next performance.  Like a child full of glee, I muse with excited anticipation
for the next sonic journey into my heart.

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