Getting Close to the GONG
In days of old, it was said that simply being in the presence of a Gong could bring great healing. And in southeastern Asia today, people still make a pilgrimage to the temples where the great gongs hang, simply to touch it, be close to it, and be blessed by its presence.
And in the gong concerts I have given over these many years, there are always participants who want to be in the front row and get as close to the gong as possible. Sometimes I had to step over feet as I moved while playing multiple gongs.
What’s happening with this desire to be so close to the gong?
While the listening to the gong is primarily a sonic experience, there is also a strong physical component.
The striking and resulting movement of the gong actually moves surrounding air in the room and sends its vibration into the floor, ceiling and walls.
The larger the gong and closer you are, the more you can feel it in the body.
I was fortunate enough on two occasions to be right next to an 80-inch (200 cm) gong when it was struck. The resulting sound waves moved the sleeves of my shirt.
Research by dermatologists have shown that sound waves actually penetrate several centimeters into your body, not only affecting the surface of the skin but the layers of fascia and muscle beneath. These waves can stimulate lymph drainage, fat break down and formation of new blood vessels. The vibrations can promote better circulation and tissue health, stimulate collagen and elastin production and even reduce subcutaneous fat thickness.
Gonging to lose weight? Probably not, but over the years I have heard anecdotes how the sound of the gong improved circulation around injured body tissues and helped reduce swelling and accelerated recovery from sprains and injuries.
How close do you need to be to the Gong to begin to receive these physical benefits?
My experience has been that when you are within or closer than the gong’s diameter you begin to experience the additional healing effects.
In other words, for 24-inch (60 cm) size gong, you would need to be within 24 inches or 60 cm. For a 36-inch gong, you can be as far away as 36 inches.
Of course the closer you get, the stronger the effects.
There are two ways to get within the optimal range of the gong’s healing energy.
- You play the Gong for yourself. Yes, the gong player gets the most benefit by being so close to the gong. Now you have another reason to get a gong and play it!
- Someone plays the gong for you, with the gong positioned very close to your body – closer than you could be in a group situation. In other words, in a therapeutic position, with the gong positioned near your feet or head depending upon the desired results.
The second method is one of the basic approaches used in my system of Gong Therapy.
So when you cannot get your front row space for a gong relaxation, remember there are other ways to get close to the Gong!
Try it out!
Want to learn more about healing, therapy, and the Gong? My Gong Therapy course is February 27-28th in an accessible online format.