In simplest form, they are an audio technology which are used for (safe) brainwave entrainment. Our subconscious mind operates, throughout the day and night, in various brainwave state frequencies, measured in cycles per second (Hz) These frequencies range from the slowest (Delta) frequencies experienced in deep, dreamless sleep and in deep meditation where your conscious-awareness is fully detached, to the fastest (Gamma) frequencies associated to stimulating flow states, high-level thinking and information processing. There are actually 5 known brainwave state frequencies each having their own set of unique characteristics:

When you're having a hell of a day—good or bad—checking out for 10-15 minutes is revitalizing. Find a place where you can be alone (and definitely ditch the cell phone)—the attic, the bathroom, a quiet cafe, a big oak tree—and wipe the slate clean for a few minutes. Do whatever it is that relaxes you: Meditate, read a novel, sing or sip tea. It's crucial to take just a few minutes everyday to de-stress. It's not how much time you allot, but being consistent that's important.


A study published in Electroencephalography and Clinical Neurophysiology by Paul Williams and Michael West in 1975 examined the brainwave states of people experienced in meditation while using photic stimulation, and another study by Leonard, Telch, and Harrington in 1999 examined the successful use of brainwave entrainment techniques for attaining meditative states in subjects.

The aim of this study is to identify tendencies in the effectiveness of relaxing audio stimuli that could be verified through further focused experiments. A series of brainwave entrainment (BWE) techniques for inducing relaxation will be presented consisting of different binaural phenomena (BP). The BP will derive from the binaural sine wave beat, widely acknowledged in rhythmic BWE literature. ... [Show full abstract]View full-text
As somewhat of a modern mystic, I have studied altered states of consciousness, but due to my monkey mind, I have only been able to experience them to a very minor degree. I have tried so many methods of meditation to little avail. But I became aware that I would not be able to progress in my spiritual life if I could not achieve at least a modicum of success in meditation.
The  human brain is made up of billions of neurons which need to communicate in order for our brains to function as a whole. The point at which two neurons meet is called a synapse and chemical signals are transported between neurons, across these synapses. Not only were the scientists able to show that the transplanted organoids developed mature neurons,  but also that these neurons were able to form synapses with each other,  and with resident neurons in the mouse brain.
Anabel first called on Alakazam in Talking a Good Game! to help her and Ash when they were attacked by Team Rocket. Alakazam was able to beat them with its powerful Psychic attacks. Ash then realized that Anabel was a Frontier Brain and that he would have to battle Alakazam. Ash chose Corphish for the match. Anabel had the ability to telepathically communicate with her Pokémon and give commands without saying a word. In the end, Alakazam easily defeated Corphish. Alakazam then went on to defeat Ash's Tauros before finally being defeated by his Pikachu, but not before weakening it.
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The various mental states of the individual are thought to take place across a varied range of frequencies, or brainwaves. By encouraging the frequency following process, entrainment is able to create positive change in the brain, through matching carefully-selected frequencies of light and/or sound. The stimulus enables the individual to access a different state of consciousness, which can be useful for a number of benefits including relaxation, anxiety management, stress reduction and more.


Summaries from recent reviews on yoga or Tai Chi clinical trial interventions indicate that these mind-body types of exercise can be effective in reducing stress (7,14,17). The authors of these reviews suggest that the results should be viewed with caution because study quality was varied (7,17). However, it should be noted that reductions in stress reported in one review were similar to or greater than reductions from other types of commonly used stress management techniques (7).


So using the example track above, the right ear is sent a 20Hz beat, compared to a 10Hz beat in the left ear.  As the right ear receives the higher frequency of beat, this works to increase the speed of the ‘left' brain hemisphere, which can be helpful for people with conditions like ADD, who are often found to have an abundance of slow wave activity in the left brain.
This is probably the most popular choice of frequency. The theta state is a state of tremendous stress relief. The benefits associated with theta level relaxation include improved concentration, reduced hyperactivity and improved memory. While in a state of theta relaxation, one’s blood pressure, breathing and heart rate all slow to a much more restful and healthy level that promotes natural healing. During theta relaxation one may also experience vivid flashes of mental imagery as the mind opens to memories or subconscious information that is not available to the conscious mind during the normal waking state. The theta state is a very deep state of relaxation that is excellent for deep hypnosis and mental programming.
Our everyday, waking brain used for active intelligence operates at approximately 13 hertz, which is in the range of high alpha or low beta frequencies. People who have certain learning disabilities and problems with attention often have low levels of 13 hertz frequency brainwaves in crucial areas of the brain used for sequencing tasks and doing simple math calculations. This is one concrete example of how brainwaves are associated with thinking and behavior. Each identified brainwave frequency has a different effect on a person’s ability to think, act, and feel.

Also, don’t you think that the inherent hemispheric synchronization using binaural beats might be a positive benefit within itself? While it’s true that the huge majority of us use both sides of our brains most of the time, it’s also true that many of us are a bit polarized to one side or the other in general, or when doing a particular kind of activity or focus. I’ve found stimulating a more equally and consistently whole brain activity has it’s own benefits other than the entrainment aspect.

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I have also noticed that during my morning meditation session (I use the product twice daily – once in the morning and again at night), I’m able to almost instantly reach extremely deep levels of relaxation. In fact, within minutes I lose all sensation in my extremities. This is exactly like yogic meditation’s pratyahara, or sense withdrawal, state. It’s really quite remarkable that I could get that relaxed that quickly. This process usually takes me anywhere between a half an hour and an hour and a half. With EquiSync, I reach the same state in literally 2 to 5 minutes!
·         THETA waves exist between 4 and 7 Hz. This is commonly referred to as the dream or “twilight” state. Theta is associated with learning, memory, REM sleep and dreaming. Memory development is enhanced while in this state. When in a theta brainwave state, memory is improved (especially long term memory), and access to unconscious material, reveries, free association, insights and creative ideas is increased.

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The pitch frequency measures and describes what a beat sounds like, i.e. does the isochronic beat have a deeper bass sound, or is it high pitched and sharper sounding? The beat waveform frequency describes how many times the beat is repeating per second, i.e. how fast it is beating. You don’t really need to concern yourself about the pitch frequency, as that doesn’t have a direct influence on brainwave entrainment and doesn’t play a part on the measurement on an EEG. I only mentioned it because you were referring to humans not being able to hear below 20Hz. I change the pitch frequency just to suit the mood of the track. For tracks that are to be relaxing, for meditation or sleep, I tend to use a lower pitch frequency so it sounds deeper and more relaxing and I never have that lower than 100Hz. For an energizing, high focus track I might use a more higher pitched 200Hz isochronic tone, because that is sharper sounding and less likely to make you feel sleepy. That’s all you really need to know about the pitch frequency.
There's no doubt that brainwave entrainment audio is a great technology for anyone who is interested in encouraging altered states of consciousness and it certainly can help people to reach deeper states of relaxation than they might normally have access to. I myself will often listen to brainwave entrainment music in order to enhance my practice of meditation. But let’s keep a balanced perspective, put all the marketing hype to one side for a moment and acknowledge that there is no brainwave entrainment technology in this world that can make you meditate like a Zen monk “at the touch of a button”, despite what some might like you to believe. The mind is NOT a machine. It moves through various states of consciousness in an organic way and at a natural pace. We certainly can guide and accelerate that process with the use of brainwave entrainment audio, but we cannot control it with the same sort of specificity and immediacy as you might control the speed of the car you drive.
Stress levels and a proper diet are closely related. When we’re overwhelmed, we often forget to eat well and resort to using sugary, fatty snack foods as a pick-me-up. Try to avoid sugary snacks and plan ahead. Fruits and vegetables are always good, and fish with high levels of omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to reduce the symptoms of stress. A tuna sandwich really is brain food.
The Transparent Corp forum – This forum is an invaluable resource for any brainwave entrainment user or enthusiast.  Most of the feedback is obviously focused on the Transparent Corp software, but with over 20,000+ posts now you can find answers to the whole array of brainwave entrainment questions on there.  (UPDATE: Sadly, the Transparent Corp forum has now been taken offline)
Since the mid-1800's scientists and researchers have experimented with sound waves, in particular binaural beats and isochronic tones, to try to guide the brain into a specific frequency using pulses of sound that can stir productivity and creativity or cause feelings of calm and relaxation. The practice of brain training and brainwave entrainment are not entirely new but the use of computer generated pulses and tones has become more popular of late since the results from isochronic tones have proven to be more effective than binaural beats.
Much of what is currently written about brainwave entrainment, especially on the internet, is simply … incorrect.  It seems par for the course that when something of huge value is discovered as a potential ‘internet product’ that it is going to be marketed within an inch of it’s life. And often with less than stellar regard for actual science, research, or factual knowledge. 
If you’ve used brainwave entrainment and experienced any benefits, feel free to share your experience in the comments section below. Be sure to discuss why you believe the entrainment was effective and/or whether you think it could’ve been a placebo effect. I’ve played around with the products and feel as if they are great for relaxation enhancement, inducing a temporary perceptual change (i.e. altered state of consciousness), and arousal reduction.
It is easy to see why religion quickly spread through culture once it emerged. When humans gained the cognitive capacity to reason and plan for the future, they became aware of their own mortality. The realization that oneself and all one’s loved ones will someday die is naturally terrifying, and this existential fear perfectly set the stage for anxiety-reducing ideas, like ones that offer a never-ending afterlife. But religions are complex ideas, and the psychological effects they have on minds go beyond just relieving anxiety.
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