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Recovery Plus 66 Feb 2016 Brainwaves: music, addiction, trauma as I read that it could help to lessen and/or manage negative thoughts. During the introduction in the first lesson, we were shown how brainwaves slow down as we get into a deeper state. Feeling lifted, as if a heavy load had been taken from my shoulders, was the effect of my first meditation lesson. I experienced a significant, positive change in my mental and emotional state. I wanted to share this with my father, who was by now in his last months of life, in intensive care. The frustration of my father not understanding, nor being receptive to what I had to share with him about the benefits of meditation, and the fact that this information came 20 years too late to help him, drove me to question meditation itself. There must be a way, I thought, to allow a person to experience the benefits of meditation without that person having to learn or understand meditation, nor perform any particular exercise. Even if it was too late to help my father, I was driven to continue this enquiry in the belief and hope that I could be able to help prevent others from befalling a similar fate. Having a degree in classical music composition, music was my medium, so I decided to create a composition which would induce the brainwaves to slow down from the beta stressed state to the calmer alpha state, and then even below, to theta and delta. My aim was to create a special type of music which would induce the meditation effect of slowing the brainwaves down, in the belief that similar benefits would then be forthcoming for the listener. About the author John Levine has been creating original music and playing piano since he was six. He graduated as a composer from Sydney University, Australia and spent several successful years in commercial music, working with bands like INXS and Midnight Oil and writing jingles for Saatchi and Saatchi and the Coca-Cola Company. Trained originally as an electronic engineer then as a classical composer, John has also studied psychology and the physiology of hearing. His alphamusic helps those battling to balance sensory and emotional overload. How can music actively assist in the treatment of addiction and trauma? You might already have witnessed how a particular piece of music can be used to sensitively remind a client of particular memories – when introduced skillfully into the therapeutic process, music can allow that client to have the ability to experience a degree of catharsis round that memory. Or you might have played soothing classical or other music in the background during sessions, to create an atmosphere of calm, conducive to allowing the client to feel safe and supported. But the placing of specific music usually requires you to know a certain amount about the client and their circumstances. While calming music can create a feeling of safety, it can also be a distraction to the great well of emotions in turmoil beneath the surface, which are often the very thing we want to support the client in being able to safely access and heal. Many years ago, my father was found to be suffering from a myriad of physical illnesses, all of which the medical experts confirmed were related to and/or caused by stress and anxiety. He was not an addict per se but he was addicted to anxiety and tension, and this eventually caused him to suffer from diverticulitis, diabetes, heart disease and a stroke, eventually passing away when he was 58 years old. When I saw my father suffering in this way, I was determined to learn as much as I could about how the brain could keep you relaxed and stress free. This journey took me to learn meditation,


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