What are Binaural Beats?
Binaural Beats definition: An imaginary tone created in the brain when it is presented with two different frequencies at the same time.
The state of your brain directly affects how well you perform activities and process information. If you want to achieve a meditative state, get a better night's sleep, activate your body's natural healing processes or become more focused and productive, you simply need to change the state of your brain.
Simply? Yes! It's actually pretty easy to safely alter how your brain is functioning. Without taking any medication or drug, you can naturally shift the speed and intensity of your thoughts by listening to specified tones that induce binaural beats.
It seems almost too easy that listening to certain tones could create a desired state of mind, but once you learn how the brain works and how binaural beats affect the brain, you'll see that it's a natural and easy process.
How does the brain work?
You brain is a powerhouse of activity. It helps to think of your brain like the internet —all across the world, people (similar to your neurons) communicate with each other at nearly instantaneous speeds.
Neurons are tiny little cells in your brain that get really excited, light up, and fire off information. The neurons in your brain talk to each other over a complicated network. Unlike internet networks that can get congested when there's too much traffic, your brain's network is a beautiful and harmonious symphony of exchanged information.
When those neurons fire off, they release small amounts of electricity, which we can measure using an EEG. What scientist discovered a long time ago was that your brain produces frequencies that we call brainwaves. The higher the brainwave frequency, the more alert, awake and reactive you feel. Lower brainwaves represent stages of rest and sleep.
How do Binaural Beats work?
In 1837, a physicist named Heinrich Wilhelm Dove discovered that listening to certain tones of sound could actually induce certain states of mind. If you listen to a tone of 410hz in your left ear and 400hz in your right ear, your brain will make up the difference and hear an imaginary tone of 10hz. This imaginary tone is called a binaural beat.
When your brain makes up that imaginary beat, your brainwave syncs up to that specific frequency. In other words, if you listen to 410hz in one ear and 400hz in the other, your brain will start to resonate with the 10hz binaural beat. Your brainwaves will be at a frequency of 10hz.
Binaural beats research has shown that you can change how you feel simply by listening to binaural beats frequencies. If you want to feel active and alert, you can listen to tones that have a bigger difference in frequency. If you want to feel calmer or fall asleep, you can listen to tones that are closer together.
To achieve a desired state of mind, you simply need to get your brain to imagine that it is hearing the frequency associated with the state you want to be in. Of course, to do this, you need to know your brain frequencies and how they make you feel:
38hz-42hz - Gamma
Spiritual awakening, universal love, and harmony These brainwaves are actually a bit of a mystery. They're the highest frequency you can achieve, but scientists are a little dumbfounded by them. Unlike the next set of brainwaves (Alpha and Beta), Gamma brainwaves don’t' really translate to feeling active and alert. Rather, what's been discovered is that in Gamma, neurons are firing so harmoniously, that people often feel like they are having a spiritual experience. This brainwave state has been associated with expanding consciousness and understanding the value of universal love and harmony.
12hz-38hz - Beta
Reaction, engagement, and sensory experiences These brainwaves take a lot of energy to produce and you'll feel really productive and focused when you're in this state. Your brain in Beta is actively engaged, aware, and reactive. This is a great state for short-term problem solving or being engaged in exciting activities. It's not a great state for long-term decision making or really thinking through your actions.
8hz-12hz - Alpha
Present, focused, and aware If you're operating in Alpha mode, you'll feel very present and in the moment. You might be somewhat reactive to the world around you, but you'll feel like you have time to process what's going on rather than just react on instinct. This is a wonderful state to achieve when meditating or doing something that requires coordination, focus and learning.
3hz - 8hz - Theta
Dreamy, otherworldly, and surreal You may have experienced Theta right before drifting off to sleep, during a lucid dream, or during a deep meditation. In Theta, you no longer sense the outside world, but you are aware and conscious of your internal world. All of your subconscious fears, hopes and judgments are hidden in the Theta state. Theta is a difficult state to achieve because you often drift out of it very quickly either becoming conscious in Alpha or moving on to the nex