Tibetan Singing Bowls For Beginners [Everything You Need To Know]
Tibetan Singing Bowls For Beginners [Everything You Need To Know]

 In this guide to Tibetan singing bowls for beginners, I’m going to show you how to choose, buy, and how to use a singing bowl.

As a meditation teacher I have taught many people how to use Tibetan Singing Bowls. They are one of the best tools for meditation. And they can have a powerful effect on your mind. Plus, they make for some of the best meditation music.

Here’s what we will be looking at in this guide:

CONTENTS:

And you might like to read my guide to buying a meditation gong too.

What is a Tibetan Singing Bowl?

Tibetan Singing Bowls (sometimes called Buddhist bells or prayer bowls) are instruments used in meditation. They are actually a type of standing bell in the shape of a bowl. You hold them by hand and play them with a mallet (usually). This produces a beautiful sound that is proven to have beneficial effects on the mind and body [1]. You can also use chakra singing bowls to open your chakra. I will show you how to use singing bowls for chakra opening in just a moment.

One of the big benefits of singing bowls for beginners is that they are serenly relaxing. They also offer any health benefits.

When you listen to or play these instruments, your brain changes structurally and your mind heals emotionally and spiritually. That’s why monks have been using them for more than 3000 years.

Today you can even have healing massages done at health spas where they put the bowl on your skin and the vibrations heal the body.

 

Best Tibetan Singing Bowls For Sale Online

Let me show you the Tibetan Singing Bowls for sale online that I recommend. As a meditation teacher, I have bought lots of bowls online, so I know what’s good and what isn’t.

I’ve divided these by price point so you can easily choose the best  one for you.

I will say this though: price does have a huge effect on quality. If you want a good big one, it wont be cheap. It will definitely be worth it though!

1. Best For Under $50

tibetan singing bowl

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If you’re looking to buy cheap singing bowls online I recommend this one, the Ohm Store Tibetan Meditation Yoga Singing Bowl Set.

There’s a lot I like about this little one. Best of all is the fact that it looks really good for the price. And it sounds great too.

The frequency of this singing bowl is 552 HZ, D-flat. And it’s been tested with the water technique and does indeed make water ripple and jump.

Made of brass and without seams, this cheap meditation bell produces a good tonal quality. And at the price range it is highly affordable and make for one of the best meditation gifts. Of course, this is just one Buddhist bell, it isn’t a complete singing bowl set, so it does not activate all chakras (for that, I recommend you choose the crystal chakra singing bowl below).

2. Best Chakra Singing Bowl Set ($$$)

chakra singing bowls

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For the best chakra singing bowl set I highly recommend you take a look at TheMelMart’s 7 singing bowl set.

This chakra singing bowl set is available in different sizes:4 inches, 4.5 inches, 5 inches, 5.5 inches, 6 inches, and 7.5 inches. The set comes with a 7-ring cushion and 7-pieces wooden mallet, plus 1 or 2 drumsticks. This Himalayan bell set is handmade in Nepal and comes wholesale from Singing-Bowl House, an authentic Tibetan singing bowl manufacturer.

Both the look and sound of these bowls is authentic. And they produce a fantastic audio range to open the chakras.

 

3. The Best Crystal Chakra Singing Bowl Set To Buy Online ($$$$)

crystal singing bowls

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If you are looking for the best chakra crystal singing bowl  set for sale, you will definitely want to take a look at this one.

TopFund’s quartz crystal singing bowls are the best (and as a meditation teacher i have seen a lot of different mediation bowls!) These crystal chakra bells look and sound beautiful. And they are the perfect Tibetan singing bowls for  chakra-opening.

I love the way these ones look too. They have a beautiful, icy clean look to them. They make wonderful little decoration pieces for your home, especially if you have a meditation room.

These bowls are made from 99.9% pure quartz and create a deep, resonant sound.

The reason why I personally rate these as the best chakra singing bowl set is that they make the perfect sound for opening chakras and they look beautiful. Plus, you can choose your size. The retailer has options for 8-10 inches up to 8-20 inches. It comes with a rubber base to sit the bowl on, and a rubber mallet.

For me, this is the best singing bowl set for chakra activation.

 

4.  Best Chakra Singing Bowl Set  ($$$$$)

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  cvnc frosted quatz singing bowl set

The absolute best chakra singing bowl set is one that  is made from frosted quartz. These differ from traditional Buddhist ones, which tend to be made of metal. The argument is that because the human body is made predominantly of water, it is predisposed to respond to crystal more than metal (the human body has comparatively little metal).

The best crystal singing bowls will be made of 99% pure quartz and are finely tuned to the frequencies of the seven chakras.

One of the best chakra singing bowl set you’ll find is CVNC Energy Bowls’ Chakra Tuned Set Of 7 Frosted Quartz Singing Bowls, pictured above.

 

Why Chakra Bowls?

Chakra singing bowl sets have existed for thousands of years, ever since around 2500BC. Today they’re everywhere, from your local Buddhist temple to your yoga studio—and maybe even at home if you have bought one using our singing bowl buying guide.

You’ve probably listened to a chakra singing bowl during yoga when you meditate in Savasana. Or when you’re doing a group meditation session at your temple or meditation studio. They’re even heard at health spas, hospitals, churches and in therapy sessions.

Did you know that just by meditating on the sound of a chakra singing bowl set you can activate and balance all seven chakras?

The chakras are wheels through which energy (prana) flows. The word itself literally means “wheel”. It’s a concept that has been around for 2600 years and was first found in the classical spiritual text the Upanishads.

The chakras exist along the spine from the pelvis up to the crown of the head, and they’re vital to our wellbeing. That’s why so many of THE DAILY MEDITAITON’s readers have been using our Chakra Meditation Tutorial (link is above).

When one chakra is out of balance it can cause big issues for our physical and mental health. I found this out for myself in 2010, when a problem with my root chakra caused an extreme stress reaction and led me through personal hell (thankfully I was able to recover naturally using spiritual practices, including using chakra singing bowls for healing).

When your chakras are out of balance you’ll experience all manner of problems—the specific problem you encounter will depend on the chakra that is out of balance.

Thankfully, we can use a chakra singing bowl set to open the chakras and balance them.

Benefits

As you may know, there are seven chakras:

  • Crown Chakra (Sahasrara)
  • Third Eye Chakra (Ajna)
  • Throat Chakra (Vishuddha)
  • Heart Chakra (Anahata)
  • Solar Plexus Chakra (Manipura)
  • Sacral Chakra (Swadhishtana)
  • Root Chakra (Muladhara)

We can balance the seven chakras by meditating. But perhaps a better and more enjoyable way to balance the seven chakras is with a chakra singing bowl set.

Chakra singing bowl sets contain a bowl for each chakra. This is important because each chakra responds to a different frequency of sound. Hence why each bowl produces different frequencies.

Root chakra singing bowls:  UT – 396 Hz  

Sacral chakra singing bowls:  RE – 417 Hz  

Solar plexus singing bowls: MI – 528 Hz  

Heart chakra singing bowls: FA – 639 Hz – Connecting/Relationships (the 4th Chakra)

Throat chakra singing bowls: SOL – 741 Hz  

Third eye chakra singing bowls: LA – 852 Hz  

Crown chakra singing bowls: 963 Hz

By producing the specific frequency for each chakra, singing bowl sets balance the seven chakras, healing the mind and body.

 Why Crystal?

Today, many people argue that  if you’re shopping for Buddhist bowls, you should probably buy a crystal chakra singing bowl set.

Traditionally, however, Buddhist bowls were metal.

So, who wins in a metal singing bowl VS crystal singing bowl contest?

The argument is that the sounds of traditional metal singing bowls do not penetrate the body to the same extent as crystal singing bowls do because the human body is made mostly of water, not metal. Therefore,we naturally respond to the sound of crystal bowls because our bodies are crystalline.

Quartz is also known to be a highly conductive transmitter. After all, it’s the same stuff that is used in a lot of computers and other tech, specifically because it transmits electricity so effectively. And of course, electricity is pivotal to the functioning of we human beings. So, it does seem logical that a quartz crystal singing bowl set would have more of an effect on a human than a metal one.

And in my experience you can always hear the different between crystal singing bowls and metal ones.

It is curious that for thousands of years all Buddhist bowls were metal. Then again, even the spiritual field is not immune to evolution. So is this simply the future of singing bowls?  Will we all be buying singing bowls made of crystal from now on?

Either way, a crystal chakra singing bowl makes for a beautiful and powerful addition to your spiritual healing tool-kit. And they are one of the best ways to balance the seven chakras.

How To Choose A Singing Bowl 

Above we looked at the best Tibetan singing bowls for sale online.

Now let’s look at how to choose  the right one for you.

Obviously you will want to check that your singing bowl set produces the right sounds for healing.

But there’s more to it than that. When it comes to choosing, follow the tips below.

1. About Buying Antique Singing Bowls (Fake Ones Are Everywhere)

Keep this in mind if you want to buy antique singing bowls: fake ones are everywhere. And it can be difficult to tell the difference between a authentic antique singing bowl and a fake one. if you buy a fake antique singing bowl you will losing money and your bell might not even work properly.

So how do you tell the difference?

If you want to know how to buy singing bowls in the antique range, I highly recommend researching how to tell antiques from fakes. Otherwise you will end up wasting your hard earned money.

YoWangDu has written an excellent guide that explain important facts about how singing bowls are made. Read the article here. It answers a lot of questions.

While there are lots of authentic Tibetan singing bowls for sale, there are lots of fake antiques too.

2. How To Buy Authentic Antiques

If a Tibetan singing bowl is being marketed as antique it should be at least a hundred years old.

Some vintage bowls in private collections are thousands of years old.

You can tell if it’s a authentic antique singing bowl by looking for specific markers:

  • Authentic antique singing bowls will have markings inside and out.
  • Authentic antiques will be thinner on the bottom, may have a certificate saying it has been certified as authentic, and will cost from $100 (for a very small bowl) to many thousands of dollars for a large one. So, when you want to buy an authentic antique, ask to see the certification.
  • Old Buddhist bowls are metal and made from different materials to new ones. The new ones are typically made of a type of bronze called “bell metal”, which is made of copper and tin. Authentic antiques are made of high-quality bronze and various other metals, such as gold, silver, meteoric iron (sky-metal) and thogcha.

3. Your Reason

If you want to know how to choose a singing bowl, always remember what matters to you as an individual.

What is your main reasons for buying a Buddhist bell. Is it:

  • Healing?
  • Grounding?
  • Chakra meditation?
  • In yoga classes?
  • For decoration?
  • What type of meditation will you be doing? Zen? Mindfulness?

These are important considerations to make before choosing a bowl.

For instance, for chakra healing you will need a specific chakra singing bowl set, or the correct singing bowl for the chakra you are healing because different chakras require different frequencies.

4.  Mallets

Mallets come in different sizes and weights. Some are suede. Some wood. Some felt-covered. They vary greatly.  Make sure the bowl you buy comes with a good mallet (or buy  mallet separately).

5. Sound quality

Don’t choose bowls based on image alone. Make sure you have a good idea what it will sound like.

The best singing bowls sound rich and resonant. You should be able to hear the overtones it’s producing. If the bowl doesn’t hold its sound it is a badly made bowl. Even good cheap singing bowls should hold their sound.

Does the bowl sound tinny? That’s another sign of a bad bowl. Don’t buy it.

6. Where you can find Tibetan Singing Bowls for sale

To find an authentic antique Tibetan singing bowl, I recommend visiting  a specialist antique store specialising in world culture or spiritual items. For all other times, it’s easier (and reliable) to use an online store.

How Chakra Singing Bowls Open Your Chakras

It is possible to use chakra singing bowls to open your chakras.

You’ve probably listened to a chakra singing bowl during yoga when you meditate in Savasana. Or when you’re doing a group meditation session at your temple or meditation studio. They’re even heard at health spas, hospitals, churches and in therapy sessions.

So how do they work?

The chakras are wheels through which energy (prana) flows. The word itself literally means “wheel”. It’s a concept that has been around for 2600 years and was first found in the classical spiritual text the Upanishads.

The chakras exist along the spine from the pelvis up to the crown of the head, and they’re vital to our wellbeing.

When one chakra is out of balance it can cause serious issues for our physical and mental health. I found this out for myself in 2010, when a problem with my root chakra caused an extreme stress reaction and led me through personal hell (thankfully I was able to recover naturally using spiritual practices, one part of which was playing Buddhist bells.

Playing these instruments can open and balance all your chakras. There are seven of them:

  • Crown Chakra (Sahasrara)
  • Third Eye Chakra (Ajna)
  • Throat Chakra (Vishuddha)
  • Heart Chakra (Anahata)
  • Solar Plexus Chakra (Manipura)
  • Sacral Chakra (Swadhishtana)
  • Root Chakra (Muladhara)

Each of these chakra responds to a different frequency of sound, which is why chakra singing bowls have seven bells–one for each chakra.

The different chakra frequencies are as follows:

Root chakra singing bowls:  UT – 396 Hz

Sacral chakra singing bowls:  RE – 417 Hz

Solar plexus singing bowls: MI – 528 Hz

Heart chakra singing bowls: FA – 639 Hz – Connecting/Relationships (the 4th Chakra)

Throat chakra singing bowls: SOL – 741 Hz

Third eye chakra singing bowls: LA – 852 Hz

Crown chakra singing bowls: 963 Hz

By producing the specific frequency for each chakra, singing bowl sets balance the seven chakras, healing the mind and body.  That’s one of the benefits of these beautiful instruments  But there are many more benefits..

Benefits of singing bowls for beginners

They are one of the most powerful types of instrument used in sound healing.

I’m constantly stunned by how much I get out of meditating on one of these instruments. Whether it’s a pure gold chakra singing bowl set that activates your chakras, or a simpler type used for relaxation, you will get get so much out of them.

The benefits of singing bowl meditation include:

  • Balances the seven chakras
  • Relaxes the mind
  • Some research shows it can cure illness
  • Some research shows it can even cure cancer
  • Reduces stress and anxiety
  • Balance blood pressure
  • Reduces anger
  • Improves blood flow
  • Good for pain relief
  • Balances emotions
  • Promotes inner peace and stillness
  •  Boosts the immune system

How To Use A Tibetan Singing Bowl for Meditation [Beginners methods]

 There are lots of different ways that you can play a Tibetan Singing Bowl. For beginners, I recommend the following techniques. They are simple and ideal ways to use singing bowls for beginners who are just starting out.

“Around Rim”  

  1. Hold the bowl in your left hand.
  2. Hold the mallet in your right hand at around mid-length.  Your fingertips should point down and should be touching the wood.
  3. Tap the mallet on the bowl’s side to warm the bell.
  4. Using an even pressure, move the mallet clockwise around the outside edge of the bowl. Use a full arm movement and keep stirring the bell almost like soup.
  5. Applying pressure, continue to rub the mallet around the outside edge of the singing bowl.
  6. Try not to go too fast but rather allow the volume to build gradually.
  7. Meditate on the sound for twenty minutes.

  “Wah Wah” : 

Another great way to how to use a singing bowl is with the Wah Wah technique.

Try this:

  1. Hold the bowl in your left hand.
  2. Hold the mallet in your right hand at around mid-length.  Your fingertips should point down and should be touching the wood.
  3. Tap the mallet on the bowl’s side to warm the bell.
  4. Using an even pressure, move the mallet clockwise around the outside edge of the bowl. Use a full arm movement and keep stirring the bell almost like soup.
  5. Applying pressure, continue to rub the mallet around the outside edge of the singing bowl.
  6. Try not to go too fast but rather allow the volume to build gradually.
  7. Pull the mallet away from the bowl while it is still singing.
  8. Hold the bowl up to your top lip one inch away from your mouth.
  9. Now imagine that you’re saying “Wah. Wah. Wah.” Make the mouth shape of this sound while your mouth is an inch from the bowl.  This will change the sound of the bowl.

Water Bowl

  1. Put three quarters of an inch of water into the bowl but do not get the rim wet.
  2. Hold the bowl in your left hand.
  3. Hold the mallet in your right hand at around mid-length. Your fingertips should point down and should be touching the wood.
  4. Tap the mallet on the bowl’s side to warm the bell
  5. Using an even pressure, move the mallet clockwise around the outside edge of the bowl. Use a full arm movement and keep stirring the bell almost like soup.
  6. Applying pressure, continue to rub the mallet around the outside edge.
  7. Pull the mallet away
  8. Now tilt the bowl, causing the water inside to lap towards the rim.
  9. Now swirl the bowl. This will create  the sound of dolphins.

Meditating with singing bowls for beginners

One of the best ways to use singing bowls for beginners is to meditate on them.

There are a few different techniques you can use. Here is one of my favorite techniques.

  1. Start by using the Around The Rim technique that we looked at above
  2. Continue to move the mallet around the rim
  3. Be mindful of the action of moving your wrist and hand to turn the mallet
  4. Take 27 breaths while meditating on the movement
  5. Continuing the mindful movement, start to focus on the sound
  6. Take 27 breaths while meditating on the sound
  7. You should now be meditating on your movement and on the sound
  8. Observe the connection between the movement and the sound. Feel that oneness between movement and sound
  9. Focus on the oneness of sound and movement for 108 breaths

This is my favorite way to meditate on a singing bowl.

Benefits of Buddhist Singing Bowl Meditations

Buddhist singing bowl meditations are deep, relaxing, and therapeutic. You can heal your by meditating on the sound of these instruments.

When you play singing bowls you make a sound that is comprised of two frequencies: a first harmonic and overtones.

The frequencies are at ranges that are very beneficial to the brain. There are also undertones that they makes. Together, these sounds produce a chord that is a “flattened fifth”.

Naga Shakthi says, “[They] produce layers of rich additional overtones, which, when heard binaurally, create beat frequency which alters our brain waves from a Beta brainwave state to an Alpha state”.

When you meditate on the sound you switch your brain to alpha frequency. And alpha frequency is very beneficial.

Scientific research shows that the flattened-fifth chord the bowl makes is very good for meditation.

The flattened fifth chord is perfect for spiritual healing and for when you need to balance your chakras.

As you listen to or play singing bowls, your brain waves synchronise with the sound of the bowl, and at the same time the unique tones produce a deep meditative state. Not only this, but the sonic waves open your mind, which can lead to spiritual awakening.

I looked for scientific research to prove the effects of Tibetan Singing Bowls on the brain, but sadly I came up short. It appears there is very little scientific research about these instruments. The best I could find was a fascinating article by Quartz, which looks at at the physics and experience of Tibetan Singing Bowls and whether they actually work.

Clearly, there are lots of benefits of Singing Bowls. Plus, if you’re like me you will just love them for the sound and the beauty of them.

There’s a fascinating history behind these instruments too, which we will look at next.

History

When you buy a singing bowl, you’re buying a piece of spiritual history.

If you ever visit a Buddhist temple you will likely see some antique singing bowls among the relics. I recently visited our local Buddhist temple and was delighted to see on a shelf the most beautiful Tibetan singing bowls set (along with wooden fish, Buddhist cymbals, bells and Dorje). Attached to the cabinet was a little leaflet introducing singing bowls for beginners, and explaining how to use singing bowls.

Traditionally, Buddhist bowls were used in Asia by monks. The monks would use them as an auditory marker to start and stop a period of meditation. Monks would combine them with a percussion instrument called the “wooden fish,” which is struck when a specific phrase is chanted. This would be done as part of a ritual before and after meditating.

Visit Japan or Vietnam and you will find a different way to use them There, they are used to mark the beginning and ending of periods of walking meditation and seated meditation.   

And then there is the Western way how to use a singing bowl.

It took thousands of years, but Tibetan Singing Bowls gradually became popular in the West, and today they are used in health spas and yoga studios as a way to relax the mind.

Facts


Here are some interesting facts about the history of Tibetan singing bowls:

  1. Some antique singing bowls are up to 5000 years old, meaning they predate almost all other tools used in meditation.
  2. Bronze bells have been used since the 10th Century BC. Tibetan Singing Bowls have existed since around 5000 years ago.
  3. Many people believe they are Buddhist in origin, but they actually predate Buddhism. It wasn’t until about 2500 years ago that Buddhists began to play Tibetan Singing Bowls. The monks found the sound the bowls made to be very relaxing. It is a healing sound. And that is why Buddhist monks have meditated on the sounds ever since.

Interesting fact:

Many people believe that Tibetan Singing Bowls are made of seven metals that are astrologically related to stars and planets: Gold (sun) Silver (Moon), Copper (Venus), Iron (Mars), Tin (Jupiter), Mercury/Quicksilver (Mercury) and Lead (Saturn) (1). But actually, they are usually made from a bronze alloy of copper and tin. There are also expensive crystal singing bowls made of quarts, and even pure gold singing bells.  

And that is everything you need to know about Tibetan singing bowls. For beginners, I recommend simply picking one up and experimenting with it, and then getting into the real meditation stuff later.

I hope you enjoyed this guide. Remember to subscribe, and write a comment below.

Paul Harrison

Paul Harrison is a meditation teacher and writer. Paul has helped thousands of people to discover their true potential through mindfulness, yoga and meditation.

This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. Great article, very helpful, how to choose right bowl for meditation /healing and opening 3rx eye for a beginner?? Any info greatly appreciated

  2. uhm. Buddhism hasn’t been around 3000 years. Maybe Taoism?

    1. Thanks for your comment. Buddhism is 2500-3000 years old with no known exact date of inception.

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