The Science Behind AVS/Entrainment

There are three things we know about brain rhythms…

  • what areas of the brain are likely to show measurable activity when simple stimuli are applied.
  • what activity is likely to be measurable when we think or do certain things.
  • that varous creatures, including humans, respond predictably to some simple stimuli.

All on the basis of statistically significant observations in small trials, with and without controls. Responses include changes in mood, cognition, memory, performance and behaviour (including addiction).

No proofs here, just verifiable observations.

Nothing beyond everyday stuff is required to fully explore the realms of simple stimuli and to enjoy the benefits. There’s an awesome selection of free brainwave products that have got it covered, at every level of expertise.

Beyond these “facts” everything that matters to a person interested in using AVS/Entrainment for therapeutic, recreational or developmental purposes  is subject to personal investigation.

Therapeutic use of AVS, using established protocols for disorders such as depression, anxiety, ADD/ADHD, pain relief, etc., is cause and effect. The results arise specifically because parts of the brain have been stimulated to a particular rhythm. Nothing more is required for therapeutic use than a single isochronic or monaural beat (binaurals need not apply). Everything beyond that diminishes effectiveness, although its a fair trade-off if a slightly more interesting session leads to more diligent use.

Particular rhythms have been observed in experts performing certain tasks – delta in deep meditators and gamma in monks contemplating higher concepts, for example. Delta sessions, with binaurals being particularly useful, do assist in achieving waking delta states where deep meditation is possible. Gamma is a whole different animal – you can listen to gamma until the end of time and it won’t increase the likelihood of a higher thought. Gamma is only interesting in its interaction with other rhythms. Gamma is what’s happening – the other bands represent the resources being called upon. Gamma is thought – everything else is sense, memory and action. Thought without good raw materials and an eventual action is mental wheelspinning – lots of energy consumed while going nowhere. Gamma sessions can provide a nice brightener – just not to much or too often. The best way to maintain healthy gamma is to think often.

The gamma interaction with other rhythms is the basis of ALUE Beth session architecture. Rather than relying on prolonged single purpose stimulus, this architecture looks at complete thought processes; the session presenting optimum stimulus to involve the required resources at ideal times during the process. Many people have noted the virtues of random and non-frequency specific sessions. Others have found value in various forms of frequency layering. This is the next step – complex sequencing of complex stimuli.

Science, as is its nature, has done the reductionist thing and confirmed the observations of humans since we first noticed our heartbeat – rhythm is integral to our being. At the simple end of the spectrum, tribal drumming supports delta and theta states. Complex – the Mozart Effect, in any of its many guises, seems to be the victim of the prevalent tendency to over-ride common sense in favour of statistical science. Does listening to Mozart make you smarter? I’m sure it does no harm, but if you pay attention to the sequences and patterns in any music that has the complexity of Mozart, a great deal of your brain will be engaged. One accepted benefit of AVS/Entrainment is increased bloodlflow for the brain. Mental engagement with complex music has exactly the same effect. The functions engaged are those engaged by a mathematician while considering improvements to a complex formula.

Once the exquisitely simple principles of AVS/Entrainment are internalised, designing sessions becomes a very free and empowering process. If you’re writing for yourself, write whatever you want to hear, whilst slipping in the standard beats wherever they fit nicely. The benefits of practical creativity and personal expression far outweigh any that will be derived from trying to stimulate your brain into being creative. The joy of writing for yourself is that you don’t have to give a nanosecond’s thought to anyone else – are you pleased with your session? 100% customer satisfaction and the uniquely perfect fit to what you needed at that moment – no one else can do it for you.

Writing for others is a matter of playing the odds. My commercial sessions usually contain simple stimuli that will evoke some response in most people, along with progressively more complex stimuli that will evoke progressively more powerful responses from correspondingly less individuals. Some may never experience some aspects – if only because of variations in hearing or vision.

AVS/Entrainment can appeal to the audio/visual components of our central nervous system just like any other reflex response to a nerve stimulus. That is the extent to which empirical science can participate in these discussions at present. A few brave souls with PhDs are, as we speak, doing science that will support the common sense ideas that they and others have come up with and already demonstrated valid in the real world.

You can think of Science as being the McDonalds of knowledge. Providers of safe and generally tolerable opinions. Years of work are put in long after a question is asked and answered, just to make sure the answer is fit for the general public. Science Media is how Science is funded. Convincing us that we shouldn’t ask for a decent reason why we should pay for the most expensive man-made object to-date, the Large Hadron Collider (think pyramids), is the pinnacle of evolution in mankind’s development of The Scam. They are over promising. If everything goes exactly as they hope it will, and every result fits the predictions, and the precise thing that answers the question that the machine was built to answer occurs and is captured – there is no material benefit to humanity. Whatever we learn, the question of, “Before that?” remains unchanged – we will never recognise the lower limit, and if/when we do/did, new science will evolve to describe the newly unknown. At present, that would be the Quantum Realm. The purpose of Science is nothing to do with ordinary people. Science is one of the essential props of the western economy – it justifies vast peacetime expenditure while providing the most destructive, invasive and expensive devices for wartime (which, these days, is always, with the global war on terror). Benefits to we the people and profits there-from are incidental – we have to be appeased so that we keep buying new, improved non-stick coatings and allowing vast amounts of our money to be consumed, directly through taxes and indirectly through corporate sponsorship.

Don’t get me wrong. Its not all bad – its just the way it is. I like science a lot – it contains much that is useful on a day-to-day basis. Science can be assumed to be correct within the scope of any particular statement, however we rarely get to see what really happened in the lab. What we get to see is the description of what happened written by a writer, hopefully with relevant expertise, but not necessarily, interspersed with interpretations and interpolations that have only the tenuous connection to the facts expected of science fiction.

If you wish to understand the science behind AVS/Entrainment, always keep in mind that science found in media consists predominantly of selective reporting  and copy-selling speculation. If you’re lucky, the writer will have referred to one or more “scientific papers”. These are readily found, many listed on the Transparent website. They are unpleasant to read unless you happen to share an author’s specific obsession. Science Media translates the results presented in these papers, however small and trivial, into marketable hopes and dreams for consumers. At the high end, for example, many people are being kept alive, with neither dignity or quality, beyond reasonable hope, on the promise that “science may soon have the answer”. (I have so many problems with that frame that I’m not even going to start – some other time.)

Today’s exercise is “Think Along With Me”.

I hope you found many things to dispute in the previous paragraphs. Pick any one or three and carefully re-examine my statement to make sure you still have a problem with it. If you do, go on a Google chase to see if you can see why I say what I say.

If you remain unsatisfied, fully form your objection and visualise the desired correction. Can the corrected thing exist?  Should the corrected thing exist?

Many initially great ideas lose there greatness quickly on investigation. Better to do a little research before accepting, discarding or refuting a proposition.

There are many descriptions and interpretations of the Universe that would be more comfortable or more convenient, but the ones that matter are those that best fit the reality in which they are being applied. Every person on the planet may assert that they dream in colour, but if my dreams are only monochrome,  I can never be certain that humans dream in colour. The smartest and most respected experts may “prove” that the only hope for survival is ethnically based “culling” – whatever… it is a BAD idea at every possible level.

If it still looks like I’ve got it wrong – let me know. If I’ve got it wrong, I would find it very useful to know – shonky workmanship on Personal Truth, as with most things, tends to find a way of biting you sooner or later. It is a VERY BAD idea to ever think you’ve got the BEST truth and that can’t be improved.


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  • gadfly101  On September 4, 2010 at 3:36 pm

    Interesting post, Craig, and worthy of a much longer response. But in closing, you suggest that even if everyone but you claims to dream in colour and you in monochrome, you cannot be certain that they in fact do dream in colour. Aside from the philosophical implications, you’ve put your finger on the precise value of Science: the fundamentally statistical nature of our understanding of reality. This approach is either confusing or confounding to those who have not learned to think in this manner; the ‘average person’ prefers certainty to the alternative. Scientists understand that, within their field of expertise, they can achieve a certain level of knowledge, which is necessarily incomplete. This is often seized upon by those interested in other outcomes: energy companies who do not wish to acknowledge that global climate change is due to their carbon dioxide emissions; fundamentalist Christians who believe that the Earth was created in 4004 B.C., and who point out that Darwinian theory is ‘incomplete’ etc. Science itself is limited to studying repeatable phenomena, which renders such areas as the psychological, mystical and UFO sightings largely beyond their purview. Nevertheless, there is still a probability, though small, that you will be struck by a car, or meteorite tomorrow, and a much higher probability that you will be thinking similar thoughts tomorrow to those you thought today.
    Keep up the good work!

    • CraigT  On September 5, 2010 at 9:29 am

      Thank you for your generous and insightful comments. Complex communication isn’t easy, so it’s always a great relief to me when I see that it is possible for my words to be interpreted as I intend them.
      Feel free to jump in here any time!


  • By Mental Disorders 101 on September 2, 2010 at 6:28 pm

    The Science Behind AVS/Entrainment…

    I found your entry interesting do I’ve added a Trackback to it on my weblog :)…

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