Finding Your Voice

Every human on this planet is gifted with a voice, a means of communication, our very own vibration full of our personal truths and emotions.

Many of us have been silenced, sadly unable to express our creativity, feelings, boundaries and needs.

Today I wanted to write and share with you about the power of singing and how it can help break through that silence.


Your Voice is Your Medicine 

Finding Your Voice

To share with you some of my story; When I was 5 years old I lost the ability to speak which was a symptom of emotional trauma, I learnt again through speech therapy classes but the inability to express my uncomfortable feelings stayed with me through into my adult life. The times I needed my voice to express my truth, boundaries or story I failed to find it as if their was an invisable tape across my mouth stopping the flow of words, an extremely frustrating experience leaving me withdrawn and contracted.  I remember on my 29th Birthday whilst in India I went to see an Vedic astrologer, she told me “Singing will be a very big part of your life, it will be your biggest healer” 


Funnily enough it wasn’t long until the opportunity presented itself one week later for me to witness the power of my voice and share it. At the opening of my 300HR Yoga training graduation Yogirishi Vishvaketu unexpectedly thrust a microphone in my hands and told me I would open the sacred ceremony. He asked me to lead a call and response chant to all in circle for “Lord Ganesha- The removal of obstacles” Well my gosh was I removing obstacles as I drew the microphone towards my mouth; I really knew I was alive in this moment as my heart was pounding out of my chest! I responded to my teachers request and I started to sing out the only mantra I knew to the elephant headed God. I was so empowered and that was it… something shifted and a week later I bought a harmonium, an Indian musical instrument and started to learn more mantras to sing and share.


What I noticed was the more comfortable I became with singing aloud, the more transformation happened within and naturally I started to become more skilled at sharing my needs, boundaries and feelings with others as I became more comfortable with the awkwardness and discomfort of vunerability when sharing my voice aloud and particulary to groups of people.


Every time I sing I heal.

Physical Benefits of Singing

When we sing we are consciously lengthening the exhale by producing a sound. The exhale is linked to the rest, digest and reproduce part of the autonomic nervous system (parasympathetic) and when activated we can transition from a state of stress and on high alert ready to take action to a calmer more relaxed state which is why the after result of singing can make you feel very peaceful. And the more we sing the more we strengthen the muscles that help us to breathe better - those deeper fuller breathes that your body loves!


Not only that but singing releases oxytoxin the ‘love and trust’ hormone, especially singing in community. The release of oxytoxin happens in our bodies when we feel safe, heard, cared for and supported. We can experience this hormone when we hold eye contact with others, give long bear hugs, have orgasms and a womens body prodcues a ton whilst giving birth to baby to stimulate contractions . It's presence in our body helps to balance out stress hormones like cortisol to bring us back into a natural state of homeostasis. And on the topic of hormones singing is known to release endorphins, the happy brain chemical that makes you feel uplifted.

Yogic Practice of Kirtan

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Kirtan is a devotional practice of singing mantras in a group- usually one leads the call and the others in circle respond, all to the accompaniment of instruments. The mantras usually express loving devotion to a deity (god or goddess) the earth and the 5 elements or spiritual ideas. This practice has been practiced by all the ancient and sacred traditions in the world. 

Why? Because singing in this way as a collective invites you to leave behind your ego and let devotion shine through your heart to connect, merging yourself with cosmic consciousness. 

This type of singing practice (Bhakti Yoga) is especially good for someone whom is sensitive and highly emotional as singing can help tranform emotions in to devotion.

Reflecting on my first kirtan experience my heart was burst wide open. It was great singing as a collective group, syncronising, vibrating, moving and breathing together. It is almost impossible to be pulled away from the present moment as you become absorbed in song. It was a very transformational experience espeically to have permission to use my voice. For some the experience of kirtan can be so powerful and incredibly moving, for some the practice just resonates on a soul level.  There is space for any feelings or emotions that want to move through you as the vibrations of your voice and others move through every cell of your being, you can cry, laugh, clap, dance or be still and receieve. 


Our Voices are our own remedies for the heart, for the soul. Are you ready to find yours?


Maybe you are reading this and thinking “But I don’t have a good voice” or “I can't sing” thus falling into the layers of conditioning that make us believe we should sound like Whitney Houston to have permission to sing aloud BUT… Singing as a PRACTICE is what it FEELS like, I can not emphasise that enough. Showing up and singing freely awakens our higher spiritual, creative potentials and it is LIBERATING. Though I do believe singing is an art form and I can say becasue I have witnessed in myself and many others that every singing voice has potential to develop but you have to sing, learning something takes practice and through using your singing voice more often it will open. And if you do discover that singing resonates with you there are many great singing teachers out there in the world to see in person or online who would love to help you develop your voice not just how to sing, but how to breathe well whilst singing and helping build confidence in how you share it. 


So let your voice shine, sing in the shower, in the car, or even better come to a Kirtan. When social distancing is no longer a thing and I can make my way back home again to Berlin I will be posting dates for Kirtan offerings (I can not wait for that!!) 


Some of my favourite Kirtan artists that you can find on spotify...


- Edo and Jo

- Kirtaniyas

- Rob and Melissa

- Ambika 

- Krishna Das

- Govindas and Radha 

- Kevin James


With so much love and song 


Jai Ma

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