Tibetan Singing Bowl

How To Buy a Good Tibetan Singing Bowl

Most people have never bought a singing bowl before, which is understandable as they are pretty expensive.

Choosing a singing bowl might be difficult, considering the wide variety of different shapes and sizes available for purchase. 

Quality singing bowls can also be costly, making this an investment that consumers should not take lightly. If you're feeling overwhelmed by the variety of singing bowls available, you're in luck! 

This guide will help you narrow down your options and choose the perfect singing bowl for your specific needs and interests.

So, Which singing bowl do you think is the best fit for you? In this article, you'll learn how to buy a good Tibetan singing bowl that will serve you well and last without having to worry about it getting damaged or lost. Let's dive in.

What is a Tibetan Singing Bowl?

A singing bowl is a musical instrument popularized by many Buddhist priests who used it to gather and collect money for their monasteries during the medieval period. 

What are the benefits of singing bowls?
In addition, the bowls were used for singing, chanting, ceremony and performing ceremonies such as weddings and funerals. 

Singing bowls are typically composed of an alloy of metals such as copper, silver, iron, tin, lead, or gold. However, pure crystal singing bowls were quite popular around the close of the twentieth century.

They are characterized by a wide range of variants and qualities like shape, style, quality, tone, size, and other characteristics. It is pretty common to find these bowls in Tibet and Nepal, and is considered sacred. 

Singing bowls are also used for meditation, creating ambient sound, making music, and more.

How do singing bowls work?

Singing bowls create soothing sounds. They work by vibrating and, in most cases ringing the bowl, which is why they aren’t cast or struck.

The vibrations produced by a singing bowl activate chakras, which are sometimes referred to as "the heart of an instrument." Singing bowls also have healing vibrations that help subdue stress and calm the mind. 

There is no music composed for singing bowls, as they are used specifically for creating ambient sound or for their benefits for the mind and body.

What are the types of singing bowls?

Singing bowls come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Some experts think there are up to 50 different types of singing bowls.

On the other hand, most singing bowl retailers limit their product options to seven or eight basic designs. 

Genuine antique singing bowls will be at least 100 years old, with some dating back hundreds of years. You can generally identify the ancient bowls by their shape, markings, metal thickness, and tone produced. 

Although different Himalayan singing bowls exist, most genuine singing bowls can be traced back to Nepal, Tibet, Mongolia, and India. 

When comparing various forms of singing bowls, a range of almost five octaves, from high to low tones, can be generated. Let’s now look at the types of singing bowls in more detail.

Thadobati 

Thadobati singing bowls have tall walls, straight sides, flat bottoms, and simple, undecorated lips. They can play up to five distinct octaves and respond nicely to mallet play. Thadobati bowls are tiny or medium and range from $60 to $560. 

How do I know what kind of singing bowl I have?
Thadobati bowls are the earliest bowl forms, dating back to the 15th century. These bowls are made from high-quality metals and are often purchased by collectors. The tone produced by these singing bowls ranges from low to high.

Jambati

Jambati bowls have curving sides, flat bottoms, and inward-facing lips with attractive hammer markings adding to their overall beauty.

They can play up to four distinct octaves. However, they play the second or third octave most of the time. They respond beautifully when struck with a mallet. 

The largest and heaviest singing bowls are jambati bowls. A single Jambati bowl necessitates the work of 3 to 4 artisans.

Given its size and the labour required to create them, Jambati bowls range from $640 to $8,800. These bowls are frequently found in excellent condition.

Naga

Naga pedestal bowls are another name for Naga singing bowls. It gets its name from its chalice-like form.

Naga pedestal bowls
They are responsive bowls; however, their sound is occasionally affected by the pedestal base. They are tiny to medium-sized bowls that are pretty unusual and rare.

Mani

Mani bowls are short, thick bowls with an inward-facing lip and a flat bottom. They have a three-octave range and are generally easy to play; nevertheless, some can be temperamental. Their tone is noticeably higher than that of other bowls.

Ultabati

Ultabati bowls, like Jambati bowls, are vast and hefty. However, they generate the lowest two octaves and, with practice, can be pretty easy to play. 

What are healing bowls made of?
In addition, Ultabati bowls can produce fountains and the OM sound, popular in Buddhist practice. Unfortunately, they are also among the most costly bowls available.

Manipuri 

Manipuri singing bowls feature shallow insides and splayed rims and can be small or medium in size. They create a variety of primary tones and are low-cost bowls. 

Lingam

Lingham bowls, like Manipuri bowls, are shallow but distinguished by a lump in the centre. The bowl’s peak creates a flat bottom with a navel-like indentation. Their design produces a distinct sound that can make them challenging to play. 

What is a lingam Bowl?

Remuna

The walls of Rumana singing bowls are smooth and thin. They’re also well-known for their decorative art. These medium-sized bowls are among the simplest to master.

Crystal

Crystal bowls became fashionable in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Quartz crystal singing bowls are available in frosted, transparent, mineral fusion, and handle bowl varieties. 

What are crystal bowls used for?
These bowls exist in various sizes and can create tones in the third, fourth, and fifth octaves.

What to Look for When Buying a Tibetan Singing Bowl

There are several distinct elements to consider while searching for a Tibetan singing bowl.  Because of the numerous makes and models on the market, many first-time consumers will have difficulty settling on the best one.

That is why it is critical to understand what to look for. You'll discover a list of things to think about when looking for your own Tibetan singing bowl down below.

Quality

Quality is unquestionably vital for everything that you buy. It is especially true when purchasing a Tibetan singing bowl. So, how do you tell if a singing bowl is a high quality?

First, you should be aware that some Tibetan bowls are ancient, while others resemble antique. The truly antique bowls will be at least a century old, so you can be confident that these products are of the highest quality and craftsmanship. You'll also want to be aware of the quality of the metal itself.

The bowl’s tone can measure the metal’s quality, but you will also want to consider its weight, appearance, size, and ease of play.

Lastly, you'll want to take note of its exterior design and aesthetics. Finally, the overall look will speak volumes about the manufacturer and country of origin.

The Bowl’s Purpose

Choosing a bowl to meet your individual needs will depend on what you intend to use the bowl for. These bowls are suitable for meditation, grounding, and physical healing. You can also use them with other instruments to produce a more powerful impression.

So, choosing the suitable bowl will come down to what you plan to do with the bowl itself. You'll want to strike a balance between its overall size and appearance and the tone it produces. 

Also, some bowls are specifically for single-note playing, so finding one capable of producing a range of tones will be ideal.

The Sticker Price

Unlike other musical instruments, Tibetan singing bowls have an affordable price ranging from $20 to several thousand dollars. However, this doesn’t mean that the highest-quality bowls will necessarily cost more.

You can find the best singing bowls with an affordable price tag with some research. The price will be directly proportional to the quality of the bowl, its overall size and style, and its type and elegance. You'll be able to tell what has been put into a bowl when you look at its exterior design as well.

Tones and vibrations

When a Tibetan singing bowl is pounded with a mallet, the vibration and tone should stay in the air for a long time. This method generates numerous layers of tones covered with harmonics and overtones. 

If the vibrations fade quickly and do not linger when testing the bowl, you know you're not dealing with a high-quality bowl. 

Acoustics and sound

Perhaps the most important thing is to ensure that you are happy with the sound of a bowl. A smooth and clear tone is what you should be looking for. 

While a singing bowl may look good and feel heavy, it's not worth buying if you don't like the sound it produces. Take several different bowls for a test run before making any commitment.

Ease of playing

Ease of play is an important distinction when shopping for a Tibetan singing bowl. Some bowls, especially the small- to medium-sized ones, are easy to play with, as they come with a narrow mouthpiece.

You'll want to avoid bowls that have a large mouthpiece because they can be too hard to play correctly. 

Instead, you’ll want one that is just right – not too big or small. With this in mind, pay close attention to the bowl’s design and shape when evaluating ease of playing.

Weight and size

As mentioned above, the weight of a Tibetan singing bowl will depend on the size of the bowl itself. For example, some bowls are exceptionally light, while others are pretty heavy. 

Likewise, you should also consider the mass of the bowl when selecting one to own. If you plan to take it with you on your travels, make sure you know the weight before buying a singing bowl.

Where Can I Purchase Singing Bowls?

You can purchase singing bowls in a variety of locations. Health and wellness stores in your neighbourhood may sell singing bowls on occasion.

As well, there are many excellent sites to buy singing bowls online. You'll find some of the best sites right here.

eBay

eBay is one of the best sites to buy singing bowls online. They have an excellent selection and sell new, used, and vintage bowls at great prices.

You shouldn't have any trouble finding the perfect singing bowl with a little bit of shopping on eBay.

Amazon

Amazon is another excellent choice for buying Tibetan singing bowls online. It is the largest marketplace on the internet and frequently has specials and deals on singing bowls. You can find new, used, and vintage bowls through Amazon.

Etsy

Etsy is an online marketplace that specializes in handmade items. You’ll find numerous handmade Tibetan singing bowls for sale through Etsy’s online store. 

You can also look for sellers specializing in selling singing bowls to ensure that you get a product made by hand and made with care.

Conclusion:

Singing bowls can be an excellent supplement to your treatment and health routines, as well as your regular meditation routine and group yoga courses. 

Singing bowls and their medicinal capabilities, such as stress reduction and pain relief, can benefit our general health. A suitable singing bowl can do wonders for both our bodies and spirits. 

Finding an eligible bowl for you is essential to your overall health and wellness, so take your time choosing one. Follow these tips to help you find a Tibetan singing bowl that is just right for you!

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