A couple of people wrote asking for more information on binaural beats. What follows is information that gives some idea of the more exotic and strange possibilities that exist for those who are really interested in exploring consciousness. And back down here on earth, there are also some notes from my own experiences to date.
Jim Peters, 10-Jan-1999
The Monroe Institute pages only deal vaguely with the more profound uses of binaural beats. However, Ken Eagle Feather has participated in several of their programs, and was invited to be a test subject in their labs. He describes several different 'Focus levels' that he experienced in his book "Tracking Freedom", pages 170-176. I believe that a 'Focus level' is simply a tone-set (in my terminology). These Focus levels include:
Focus 10 - brain awake, body asleep
Focus 12 - expanded awareness, in the mood to head out and explore
Focus 15 - no time, 3 hours seems like 2 minutes
Focus 21 - alternate energy systems, bridge into worlds with non-human entities
Focus 22 - place where people with 'loose, chaotic thoughts' go after death
Focus 24 - belief system territories, place where dogmatically inclined people go when dead
Focus 27 - the park, a way-station, a place of high creativity, a stepping stone to areas beyond.
These are just the focus levels that Ken E-F has experienced. There are suspicious gaps in the numbering, which suggest that many more 'Focus levels' have been discovered. Apparently he also writes about his Monroe Institute experiences in his first book "Travelling with Power".
Anyway, personally, I don't fancy paying hundreds of dollars for the Explorer course from the Monroe Institute, which doesn't even seem to touch above Focus 12. That's why I wrote this utility, to experiment for myself. My own experience so far is very interesting. It is as if I've started to map out some of the various brain-states I use in my daily life, getting to understand much better how they are connected.
I've found, for instance, that it is impossible to program with certain tone-sets playing, but with others, it feels really comfortable. This to me indicates that these tone-sets play frequencies that are in accord with the frequencies of my brain-waves whilst programming, for instance.
I've also been experimenting every night, playing different sequences of tone-sets. The program always ends with some attempt to bring me up to wakefulness, recently with a gentle (hour-long) slide up from Theta to Alpha rhythms. I now know that by 8 Hz I am wide awake, and that at 7 Hz I seem to have waking semi-consciousness. At 7 Hz I am much more aware of any dreams I have had, but at 8 Hz it seems almost impossible to remember them. I think that when I do remember dreams normally, I must shift down well below 7 Hz to find them, and then come up again. With 8 Hz playing, it is difficult to go down.
Anyway, I've only just started, and I'm continuing to explore all
of this ...