Six-thousand-year-old ancient temples are giving up acoustic clues for modern scientists. Intriguing new research on ancient temples in Malta and highlighted by the Old Temples Study Foundation.
"We may be hitting on one of those 'lost secrets'," says Linda Eneix, President of The OTS Foundation, dedicated to archaeology research and education related to the ancient temples of Mediterranean Malta.
Located south of Sicily, the islands of Malta and Gozo are home to megalithic structures that were created by a highly developed people more than a thousand years ahead of Stonehenge and the pyramids.
A consortium called The PEAR Proposition: Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research are pioneers in the field of archaeo-acoustics, merging archaeology and sound science. Directed by Physicist Dr. Robert Jahn, the PEAR group set out in 1994 to test acoustic behavior in megalithic sites such as Newgrange and Wayland's Smithy in the UK. They found that the ancient chambers all sustained a strong resonance at a sound frequency between 95 and 120 hertz: well within the range of a low male voice.
In subsequent OTSF testing, stone rooms in ancient temples in Malta were found to match the same pattern of resonance, registering at the frequency of 110 or 111 hz. This turns out to be a significant level [right] for the human brain. Whether it was deliberate or not, the people who spent time in such an environment were exposing themselves to vibrations that impacted their minds.
Sound scientist, Prof. Daniel Talma of the University of Malta explains: "At certain frequencies you have standing waves that emphasize each and other waves that de-emphasize each other. The idea that it was used thousands of years ago to create a certain trance -- that's what fascinates me."
Dr. Ian A. Cook of UCLA and colleagues published findings in 2008 of an experiment in which regional brain activity in a number of healthy volunteers was monitored by EEG through different resonance frequencies.
Findings indicated that at 110 hz the patterns of activity over the prefrontal cortex abruptly shifted, resulting in a relative deactivation of the language center and a temporary switching from left to right-sided dominance related to emotional processing. People regularly exposed to resonant sound in the frequency of 110 or 111 hz would have been "turning on" an area of the brain that bio-behavioral scientists believe relates to mood, empathy and social behavior.
Watch this video to experience the chanting sound effect recorded in Malta’s Hypogeum of Hal Saflieni: