Arts & Culture

For Linda Chambers, owner of Dari Rasa Trunk Show, business means nurturing. She opened the storefront (132 East Main Street in Bozeman) in 2010, transitioning from the ‘traveling trunk show’ she’d had in Tucson since 2004. “Business is a tremendous joy,” she says. “It’s my baby, and everything here has a story and purpose.” Chambers grew up in Singapore, and deliberately created an enterprise that would allow her to return to Asia. She’s delighted that Bozeman has been receptive to her unique, eclectic offerings, which include metaphysical gemstones, handcrafted jewelry, textiles, and statuary, as well as crystal and Tibetan “singing bowls,” used in vibrational sound healing. 

Chambers was introduced to the therapeutic use of sound during a massage that incorporated crystal bowls to calm her nervous system. “They spoke to me,” she remembers. “I was enthralled.” She immediately sought training in the technique, and has now been practicing vibrational sound healing for three years. So far, nearly 500 people have experienced its nearly magical effects. 

“There is a language spoken between the crystalline structure of the body and the bowls,” explains Chambers, noting that psychic Edgar Cayce predicted sound would become ‘our new medicine.’ (Some physicians are already on board; Cornell oncologist Dr. Mitchell Gaynor has been using singing bowls for 20 years.) “The human body is made up of electromagnetic vibrations, and each atom has its own frequency,” wrote Cayce in 1928. Atoms vibrating “out of sync” can manifest dis-ease. Sound work helps release stuck patterns and increases the positive charge in cells, which promotes normal cellular division. It alters the neurotransmitter patterns of all five senses—the sound becomes the “carrier wave” upon which healing intentions ride.

Using bowls tuned to specific notes, Chambers carries clients to a place where their bodies can harmonize dissonance. Fully clothed, the recipient lies on a luxurious massage table. Gel pillows and a beautiful silk coverlet offer just enough swaddling. She begins sessions with the 24” Quartz Crystal Singing Bowl to establish calm. “As I’m playing, I’m listening to see how the body is reacting,” she notes, adding that she is always amazed at the power of such gentle work: “People are tremendously altered in a short timeframe.” 

So, apparently, are elephants. On a recent trip to Thailand, Chambers visited the Patara Elephant Farm in Chang Mai. “We started talking about bowl work, and Ben, the manager, was adamant that I work with the elephants,” says Linda. Though owner Pat Trungpakan was initially opposed to it, Ben’s persistence brought Chambers to Patara last April. She introduced a protocol to ease depression, the stress of losing a parent, the trauma of mistreatment in circuses, zoos, or illegal logging camps, or wounds sustained from land mines or poachers. “Vibrational sound healing also eases the discomfort elephants feel when blood samples are taken from their ears, and is great for childbirth and nursing moms,” says Chambers. “Tip, for example, wouldn’t stand still more than 20 seconds for her baby to suckle. We took her into a quiet place and played crystal singing bowls; she learned to relax and let the baby nurse.” 

Chambers returned to Patara in October to check on five elephants that had received consistent treatment. Results were promising, and Pat is now so enthusiastic he suggests “elephant meditation” be instituted at Chang Mai Elephant Hospital. This fall Chambers will travel to Kenya to set up similar programs at three elephant orphanages. During this safari, a documentary will be made with support from major airlines and corporations. “We want to show what happens when babies are orphaned by poachers,” says Linda, who hopes the film will be brought into schools. “Let the kids be the voice to say, ‘stop buying ivory.’”

Meanwhile, Chambers has set up a Bowls for Elephants fund. On Wednesday nights, Dari Rasa Trunk Show (the name is a fitting coincidence) hosts a donation-based singing bowl concert / meditation. A CD, “The Sweet Spot — Healing our Elephants with Singing Bowls” was recently released;
all proceeds go to the charity.

Chambers strongly feels that “this sweet project which gives people hope” belongs to Bozeman, not just to Dari Rasa. “We’re at a very critical place with elephants,” she states. “They could be gone in less than a decade. Africa had six million; now it’s below one million. Ninety-six perish each day—one every 15 minutes. I’m hopeful that we might be making a difference—extinction is forever.”

For more about sound healing sessions, the retail store, and Bowls for Elephants, visit www.darirasa.com or phone (406) 582-0166. 

Originally from California, Cynthia Logan has been a Montana gal for 26 years.  A prolific freelance writer, her features have appeared in Cowboys and Indians, Big Sky Journal, Home, Outside Bozeman and other regional publications. She is the author of over 50 interview/profiles commissioned by Atlantis Rising, 10 of which were included in anthologies published by Inner Traditions. Cynthia can be reached at [email protected] or via cynthialogan.net.