Cymatics: How Sound Vibrations Create Physical Structures by Robert J. Gilbert, Ph.D.

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I have often been asked what I consider the best electronic vibrational healing device on the market. There are a huge number number of such devices being sold today, which in the Vibrational Testing conducted at the Vesica Institute have effects ranging from being highly beneficial to being actively harmful.

What I consider the best electronic vibrational healing device today — or at any rate my personal favorite — is the Cymatherapy device which comes out of the field of Cymatics.

At the Vesica Institute we believe that it is important to understand the core principles behind vibrational medicine and vibrational science, so let’s start by exploring a bit of the background to Cymatics.

The term “Cyma” comes from the Greek root “Kyma” meaning “Wave.” Cymatics has been described as the Science of Wave Phenomena, in the sense of vibrational wave forces. It particularly demonstrates how precise sound vibrations can structure matter into any form — and by extension, how vibration stands behind the creation of the physical world itself.  For this reason, Cymatics has become a major touchstone for all types of modern Vibrational Medicine and Vibrational Science. It empirically demonstrates — in a way that is visual and immediate — the power of Vibration to create and change physical structures.

The Development of Cymatics

Modern Cymatics is based on the work of Hans Jenny (1904-1972), a Swiss doctor who was an Anthroposophist (meaning that he was a part of the Spiritual Science developed by Rudolf Steiner.) Jenny was following up the work of German physicist Ernst F. F. Chladni, who in the late 1700’s demonstrated that drawing a violin bow across a metal plate covered in sand would create precise geometric patterns in the sand.

Instead of just using a metal plate, Jenny used a variety of surfaces such as rubber, steel, or stretched paper. Instead of using just sand on the surface, Jenny used many different substances including sand, powder, pastes, salts, oils, water, and molten plastic, all of which went through dramatic and instantaneous shape transformations as the vibrations applied to them changed.


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Instead of just using a violin bow to create the vibration, Jenny used a sine wave generator and a speaker to create the sound vibrations in his experiments; he also would use crystal oscillators attached to the underside of the surface membranes, with electrical stimulation applied to the crystals to achieve specific vibrations of audible sound.

Jenny’s work throughout the 1950’s and 60’s was publicly revealed with the publication of the two volumes of his German language masterwork Kymatic in 1967 and 1972.  Films were also made of Jenny’s experiments.

After Jenny’s death, American Jeff Volk translated both volumes of Jenny’s work into English, which is now available as the single unified text Cymatics. Volk also transferred Jenny’s films of his experiments into digital format, which is available as a Cymatics DVD; some excerpts from this DVD are available to see on YouTube, along with other modern Cymatics research by various experimenters.  The Cymatics book and video are both available from Jeff Volks’

The Development of Cymatherapy

While Jenny was doing his experiments in Switzerland, British osteopath Dr. Peter Guy Manners was conducting his own intensive research into the application of wave phenomena to healing.

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It is worth noting that Jenny’s experiments in the vibrational structuring of salts, water, oils, etc. can be directly related to the structuring of the human body, which is also based on these same substances.

Dr. Manners began research in the 1940’s into the vibrational codes of the human body, with a collaborative group of scientists and medical doctors. After decades of painstaking research, Dr. Manners developed around 750 vibrational codes for precise physiological and energetic functions; frequencies were identified to restore tissues, organs, glands, bones etc. (as well as for more subtle phenomena) to their natural healthy resonance.

Dr. Manners discovered that the most effective method of delivering these vibrational codes was through audible sound, making a direct connection between his research and the Cymatics work of Hans Jenny. Dr. Manners was effectively pioneering the practical application of Cymatics for clinical healing, leading to his work becoming known as Cymatherapy.

By the early 1960’s Dr. Manners was able to create the first Cymatherapy device to deliver these codes to patients. Dr. Manners became known for his “miraculous” results with his Cymatherapy patients, and Cymatherapy sessions continued at Dr. Manners’ Bretforton Hall clinic in Britain until his retirement in 2005.


Below Picture: Dr. Peter Guy Manners at 101 years old.


The Secret of 5

Dr. Manners found, through decades of experimentation, that combinations of 5 frequencies created particularly beneficial results with the conditions being tested.  Accordingly, most of the roughly 750 vibrational sound codes (which he referred to as “Commutations”) he discovered are comprised of combinations of 5 frequencies. These Commutations bring the cells and other structures back into a natural healthy state of vibrational resonance.

Combining 5 frequencies together was a major key to unlocking the potential of Cymatherapy; full results were simply not found when using 1, 2, 3, or 4 sound frequencies together. Once the secret of combining 5 frequencies together into a Commutation was found, one of the first successes was with the regeneration of bone from serious fractures. Then major breakthroughs followed with clearing dense scar tissue and in regenerating injured muscles, then with a huge variety of other issues.

In 2001, Mandara Cromwell from the United States met Dr. Manners, who was then 97 years old. Ms. Cromwell noted that Manners moved like a thirty year old, had a full head of hair, was clear-eyed and mentally sharp — all testaments to the power of the vibrational codes he had discovered and applied on a daily basis.

In preparation for retirement, Dr. Manners passed on his full body of work (including all 750 precise commutations) to Ms. Cromwell so that it could be made available to the public and not be lost. In 2005 Manners closed his clinic and retired to the English countryside with his wife, where he lived until his death on August 21, 2009.

Development of the Cymascope

John Stuart Reid of Britain has worked for many years to create a modern Cymatics imaging device which will show the geometric pattern created from any sound source.  He has now developed the Cymascope, which is described in detail at

It converts sound vibrations into Cymatics patterns, as seen below with the Cymatics forms created from Piano Notes, and with the vibrational pattern formed by sound on the surface of Aloe Vera gel, both rendered visible through the Cymascope.


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cymatics-1Reid then took the technology of the Cymascope and adapted it to become an App for mobile devices, which is now available for iOS devices (iPhone and iPad) and Android Phones & Tablets.
It has multiple functions, including a microphone which can take in any sound (of sufficient volume) which you play and converts it into a Cymatics image.



More info on the Cymascope is online at

Modern Cymatherapy

After Dr. Manners passed on the Cymatherapy codes to Mandara Cromwell, she updated the therapeutic device design to incorporate the latest technological improvements. Cyma Technologies was started in the U.S. to build and distribute the latest generation of devices using Dr. Manner’s commutations codes.

When first introduced to America, these devices were used extensively with animals, especially horses, with great success. Remarkable results in healing very hard-to-heal injuries such as tendon tears (for which racehorses are routinely put down when the tear is severe) have been demonstrated repeatedly, as seen in the illustration below where an extreme 95% tendon tear was repaired.


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The current products from Cyma Technologies are registered with the FDA as Class 1 Devices for use with human beings (very low risk, no prescription needed, can be sold over the counter.)

Technically Cymatherapy devices are “Electric Acoustic Massagers” for the uses of Stress Relief, Pain Relief, and Relaxation. These Cymatherapy devices use the original Commutation codes from Dr. Manners, however no medical claims are made for these codes or for these devices beyond their use for stress and pain relief only; they do not claim to diagnose or treat any illness.

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The latest Cymatherapy model for clinical use was the AMI 1000 (seen to the right) which had the ability to program in any of the Commutations and combine them in any sequence. It required extensive training for both the use of the wide range of Commutations, and for the areas of the body to use the hand-held applicator on for different issues.

Until recently there was no simplified Cymatherapy device with Dr. Manners’ sound codes which was available to the general public.

Mandara Cromwell realized that a unit needed to become available which could make this technology available for the public to own, and use in their own homes, for the first time; a unit which retained the effectiveness of the professional models while being extremely easy to operate, requiring virtually no knowledge or training in order to receive the benefits of using the device.

The first Cymatherapy device for the general public has only recently become available.  For the full story on this new breakthrough unit, please see our companion article Cymatherapy: Healing with Sound Waves.

The AMI 750 is now available through the Vesica Institute.

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15 Best Free Apps For Healthy Eating On A Budget

Moms and dads are notorious for pestering their children to eat their greens and vegetables before they leave the dinner table. Yes, they want their children to be as strong and healthy as they can be, but children find that eating their greens and vegetables to be a waste of time. Instead, they would rather fill their bellies with meatloaf, steak, chicken strips, or anything else that was delicious but not nearly as nutritious. 

However, our parents were on to something. They knew in order for their child to be as healthy as possible, they had to give them a well-balanced meal. Before the internet even existed they had to read cookbooks and memorize old family recipes to create balanced meals not only for themselves but for their family as well. They had a finite amount of resources that they could utilize and they had to be more creative with every dish they made to broaden their palate.  

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That being said, it’s 2019, and everyone has an infinite bank of resources they can use to get the best nutritional tips to not only cater to their specific dietary needs but to also create a more balanced meal altogether. Our smartphones have truly become a digital Swiss Army Knife that can practically do anything. We can order food online with the click of a button from retailers such as Amazon or Walmart, or we can subscribe to other retailers that will deliver healthy meals straight to our doorstep. 

In addition to the various ways we can now get healthy foods, there are also apps that can provide you with the best nutritional advice and meal plans to create balanced meals that are specifically made to promote a healthier lifestyle. So instead of manually monitoring your diet and all the foods that you consume, you now have the ability to download countless apps that will not only help track your fitness goals but also help motivate you to live a healthier lifestyle. 

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15 Best Free Apps For Healthy Eating On A Budget

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Human and Bat Echolocation in the Brain Vs Vision

In humans, vision is the major channel for receiving information about the world. The same applies to the majority of animals, even those that are nocturnal and have to rely more heavily on the inputs from other senses. There are, however, exceptions: some mammals use echolocation to construct a picture of their surroundings, effectively using it instead of vision. How effective is this method of gathering information, and can it substitute vision successfully?


Echolocation is used by several kinds of animals for navigation in various environments. Whales, dolphins, and bats emit calls (high-frequency sounds) and then listen to the echoes returned from different objects surrounding them. The distance to objects can be estimated based on the time delay between the production of the call (click) and detection of the echo. Since the sound travels in the air with the speed of 340 m/s, a delay of 2 milliseconds, for instance, would mean that the object/target is about 34 cm away.  In addition, sounds travel faster in water than in the air, making the clicking signals produced by whales of shorter duration than the signals produced by bats. Some echolocation signals produced by dolphins and sperm whales are even audible to humans.

Echolocation and its importance in the animal kingdom have been widely studied. Nature provides remarkable examples of how efficient echolocation can be. Bats easily detect tiny insects several meters away in complete darkness. Some species of bats in China and South America can fish in the darkness using echolocation, detecting ripples on the water surface that are indicative of the presence of fish under the surface. Sperm whales use echolocation to find and catch prey, mostly giant squids, deep in the ocean. These whales can dive to the depth of well over 2 kilometers and navigate through underwater canyons where their prey lives.

Although echolocation can be very efficient, it is not particularly common in the animal kingdom and was, in fact, developed independently by several groups of evolutionarily unrelated species. This is markedly different from vision, which is present in the majority of animals, with mechanisms perfected over millions of years of uninterrupted evolution.

Echolocation and Vision in Bats

If echolocation delivers essentially the same information as vision, can echolocation rely on the brain processes related to the processing of visual information?

To answer this question, scientists have investigated brain mechanisms underlying the processing of echo signals that allow animals to map objects in term of distance and direction.

Recently, an interesting study was conducted in bats with the aim of revealing what is happening in their brain while they fly through a room filled with obstacles (i.e., acoustically reflective plastic cylinders hanging from the ceiling). In order to determine the mechanisms underlying the bats’ navigation around these obstacles, researchers performed simultaneous chronological neural recordings.

The results show that the bats adjusted their flight and sonar behavior in order to respond to the echoes coming from the objects in the room. The objects’ positions were changing across the recording sessions, and bats started their flight from different start points to make sure that they didn’t rely on spatial memory from previous sessions and used only echo feedback to navigate.

The most important finding was the identification of the brain region that helped the animals to locate the objects in their environment. Echolocation signals were processed in the superior colliculus, a structure located in the midbrain. The superior colliculus consists of several layers that respond to different kinds of stimuli. Deeper layers of the superior colliculus are known to be involved in the processing of visual information. Thus, it seems that echolocation may indeed help animals to obtain a picture of their environment that is as authentic as the picture received through visual channels.

Echolocation and Vision in Humans

According to scientists, echolocation is not a phenomenon completely alien to humans. It seems that some blind individuals can be trained in echolocation.

Using this technique, they can locate objects by generating mouth clicks and listening to their echoes. The returned echoes can provide them with important information such as position, distance to and even the size or shape of the objects.

Several studies were conducted in order to determine the underlying neural mechanisms involved in human echolocation. One study investigated two individuals skilled in echolocation, one early and one late blind. The authors of the study measured brain activity in both participants while they were listening to their own echo sounds. They compared brain activity with clicks that produced echoes with the brain activity of control sounds that did not result in echoes.

It turned out that the processing of echo sounds activates brain regions that are typically associated with vision rather than hearing.  More specifically, echo signals were processed in the visual cortex (rather than in superior colliculus like in bats and other echolocating animals). However, the processing of visual information in humans is centered around the visual cortex rather than the superior colliculus, as the human visual cortex has significantly expanded compared to most animals.

Thus, in both animals and humans, the information received through echolocation is processed in those regions that are also predominantly responsible for the processing of visual information. The curious examples of human echolocation are a perfect illustration of the plasticity of our brain and its ability to adapt to changing circumstances (blindness in this case).

A recent publication on echolocation in humans reviewed the applications of this phenomenon as well as the processes occurring in the brain of echolocation experts (i.e., individuals that are skilled in echolocation). They have reported that echolocation may enable blind people to sense small variations in the location, size, and shape of objects, or even to distinguish different materials the objects are made of, simply by listening to the echoes of their own mouth clicks.

It seems that echolocation may be perfected by blind individuals to facilitate the handling of daily tasks and achieving a higher degree of independence. Based on neuroimaging studies, the review confirmed that the processing of input signals from echoes activates the visual cortex, a brain part that would normally support vision in the sighted brain.


Watwood, S.L., Miller, P.J., Johnson, M., Madsen, P.T., Tyack, P.L. (2006). Deep-diving foraging behaviour of sperm whales (Physeter macrocephalus). Journal of Animal Ecology. 75(3): 814-825. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2656.2006.01101.x

Kothari, N.B., Wohlgemuth, M.J., Moss, C.F. (2018). Dynamic representation of 3D auditory space in the midbrain of the free-flying echolocating bat. Elife. pii: e29053 doi: 10.7554/eLife.29053.

Thaler, L., Arnott, S.R., Goodale, M.A. (2011). Neural correlates of natural human echolocation in early and late blind echolocation experts. PLoS One.  6(5): e20162. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0020162.

Thaler, L., Goodale, M.A. (2016). Echolocation in humans: an overview. Wiley interdisciplinary reviews. Cognitive science. 7(6): 382-393. doi: 10.1002/wcs.1408.

Image via Sweetaholic/Pixabay.


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