Spotlight: Paul Solomon
by Colleen M. Quinn
Upon first meeting with Paul Solomon, there is an unmistakable quality of peace and calm about him. This might seem unusual in contrast to coworkers and friends who are commonly stressed to their limits. But for Paul this isn’t unusual at all, as he has dedicated his life to helping others find their own peace. Paul is a sound healer; he uses the power of sound and music to aid his clients in their individual processes of healing.
Like most healing practitioners, Paul became interested in helping others through his own personal journey. In his early twenties, Paul was working on his own personal matters as a client of a psychotherapist in Connecticut. This initial experience particularly affected him, since his therapist combined psychotherapy with alternative forms of healing, such as touch therapy and Chinese medicine. His therapist became his mentor and friend as well, teaching Paul in many ways over the years.
During his own experience with psychotherapy and his therapist, Paul decided to pursue the field professionally and became a psychotherapist himself. Throughout his professional life, Paul has always been drawn to helping others through mental and spiritual healing. He is also a level 3 Reiki practitioner, has a Masters Degree in Clinical Social Work, and has trained extensively with sound healing practitioners such as Wayne Perry and Tom Kenyon. He has also explored many types of sound techniques and studies.
Through his professional training, Paul has worked at length in crisis intervention and with clients who experience different kinds of trauma. He worked with many people in Connecticut and New York who were affected September 11, 2001, and has offered his crisis intervention services to companies with employees who have been involved in traumatic events. Most recently, Paul volunteered in 2006 at a Palestinian school that advocates peace education, where he specialized in trauma victims.
In addition to his professional training, Paul has traveled throughout Egypt, Israel, and India, in search of his own spiritual fulfillment and love of music. His journeys through Israel hold special spiritual significance, where he has practiced his healing music and sound at many holy sites. Paul also gives sound healing concerts which he describes as a form of group meditation. The combination of Tibetan singing bowls and vocal toning are meant to help balance the energy of those present. Paul’s collective experience has led him to help others with sound and music.
As a sound healer, Paul addresses a large variety of issues for clients, including relationship matters, various physical ailments, spiritual conflicts, and emotional problems like depression or trauma. Paul focuses on the energies in a person’s system to help heal body and soul with a mind-body perspective. When a client first comes to him, Paul determines what problems need to be addressed through much discussion with the client and his own intuition.
“Everybody’s different, and they’re different at different times,” he says, explaining that he tailors his work to each individual depending on their unique needs.
He uses a number of different tools and techniques in sound and energy healing. To name a few methods, Tibetan bells and singing crystal bowls are used for sound meditation, and guided imagery and the healing hands method of Reiki are also beneficial. Paul also recommends the basics of healthy living including good nutrition, exercise, and meditation. However, there isn’t a set way a session of sound healing works. Rather, Paul uses a different combination of skills each time always working to maximize his client’s experience.
The most powerful part of sound healing is the client’s intention. “The person has to want [to heal] on all levels,” Paul says. This desire must be present in both the person’s conscious and unconscious. As the most powerful parts of the human mind, it’s important that the conscious and unconscious are both taken into account in the process of healing.
“Why don’t we change right away, even though we want to? It’s because the unconscious can be resistant to change,” explains Paul. “There can be feelings and beliefs like ‘I don’t deserve this’ [in the unconscious]. This is what prevents us from getting what we want, to be happy.” While a person might actively, consciously want to change something about themself, the greatest hurdle can be in their own unconscious.
Paul likens this situation to a computer with an operating system running in the background. If the system is working in a negative way, conscious positive aspirations won’t always have long-term effects. “What if there’s a bug that interferes with our programs?” he says. “We need to rewrite positive systems.”
A large part of Paul’s work is actually identifying what specific problems a person has in addition to helping them on the road to recovery. If someone can identify the source of their pain or unhappiness, they can try to avoid similar situations in the future.
Paul emphasizes that the healing process is not just removing patterns of negative thought or behavior, but also putting in place new, positive patterns. This is can be a complex issue to address, because there are so many patterns that come from a person’s background and history. Familial, personal, religious, karmic, and cultural aspects all influence a person on many levels. Acknowledging that positive and negative elements can come from all these influences, Paul sifts through these many layers to get at the root of the trouble and aid the client in the healing process.
The idea of sound as a vehicle for healing and enlightenment has been around for thousands of years, and was regularly practiced in the ancient cultures of Egypt, Greece, and Rome. It can be seen in the studies of Pythagoras, the Greek mathematician, who examined the mathematics and applications of sound. Even in the chants of monks and holy men singing “Om” or Gregorian hymns, the healing properties of sound can be experienced. “It bypasses the mind, it goes straight to the heart and spirit,” says Paul. Today, this ancient knowledge is used in the practice of sound healing.
The key to sound healing is utilizing energy – that of sound itself and of the energy of the person’s mind and body. Explained most simply in Einstein’s famous equation of E=mc², mass and energy are considered equivalent. Sound and light are forms of energy. While tangible materials like a chair or the human body are not energy in its purest form, they inherently contain energy or that which may be converted to energy. Sound healers take this to mean that everything vibrates at unique frequencies, down to the very electrons in their composition.
In the practice of sound healing, the vibrations unique to a person’s body, and even specific organs and body parts, are very important. Paul explains the body as an orchestra, where all parts of it vibrate together or in harmony. When these vibrations are disrupted, disease manifests itself.
The goal of sound healing is to bring harmony back to the body and mind and this is done through resonance. Resonance happens when vibrations from one object reverberate through another object and they begin to vibrate in the same way. For example, when two, differently vibrating tuning forks are held close together, they become harmonious. Likewise, sound or music can resonate with the body to foster good health and happiness. It’s no wonder then that music can be very moving – it can energize, excite, or calm.
It’s this moving experience that Paul continues to bring to others in the hopes that they can find the same contentment and joy that he feels. Using the analogy of a dirty lamp, Paul says that his work helps people slough off the mud from their light. Once they have found healing and the grime is gone, they are able to shine more brightly for others.
“I don’t heal anyone,” Paul says of the misnomer ‘healer.’ “I help nurture their positive attributes: love, happiness, creativity. It helps them grow stronger, to be more fully alive.”
About Colleen Quinn
Colleen Quinn graduated from the University of Colorado, Boulder with a Bachelor of Science in Journalism and Mass Communication. A writer for most of her life, she has been writing for Whisperingtree.net for over two years. In that time, she’s had the opportunity to meet with many practitioners and masters of the healing arts. Using her years of customer service experience and time as an intern reporter, Colleen provides a unique means of expression for each practitioner she meets. She believes that honest interest and open ears are paramount for learning and understanding the world around us. Through her writing, Colleen offers readers a valuable insight into the work of those who are doing so much to help others.
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