There exists a relationship between plants and humans. If you’ve made it so far as finding this article, we are sure you believe in this. What some of us may not be aware of yet is that the relationship between the two creatures is deeper than just photosynthesis or gardening.
“I was inspired by the characters of each plant at Taman Hayat. It’s not exactly about making music for plants, instead, it is creating music inspired by plants and because of our appreciation for nature.” Indra, 2022
Another thing that many of us need reminding of, is that the relationship between plants and humans might just be stronger than we think. What scientists can prove is that our interdependence with plants is more crucial than the interdependence we share with animals. A human simply cannot live without the oxygen produced by plants.
But a relationship is never without communication. So how do plants and humans communicate?
It’s difficult to imagine ourselves communicating with plants because we are taught to perceive plants as passive. Due to the lack of visible movements, plants seem to not have the intelligence and behaviors to communicate. Yet, their 99% of biomass on earth comprises plants, proving their advanced abilities that many have overlooked.
In the book Plant Spirit Healing, Pam Montgomery emphasized that plants’ behaviors are as sophisticated as those of animals’. They are dynamic, sensitive, and able to make calculated decisions. If we take into account spirituality, spiritual leaders such as Corbin Harney believe that plants, like everything else, have spirits.
“If you start drumming in the forests, pretty soon you’ll see the trees begin moving with the rhythm of the drum–that’s the spirit of the tree”.
However, we cannot expect all plants and all situations. The reactions a plant will give to your attempt to communicate are subjective to your intention. Unlike machines, plants react differently and more positively when your intention to connect through this music is pure.
Silvia Buffagni in The Music of the Plants told us that plants can be aware of our emotional state. Pleasant and optimistic thoughts are as important in communicating with plants as it is when you create a painting.
If you ask a green thumb if they think plants can hear us, they will probably say yes. Many gardeners and plant nurturers believe that their plants grow better when we talk to them. Now that we know plants do communicate, let’s talk about the mechanics of how plants can hear.
Just like how we feel vibrations when we hear loud music or feel the echo of a disco, plants also receive sound waves. The earth is an excellent conductor of sounds that can send vibrations to be captured by all parts of a plant’s cells.
In effect of sounds, plants could show positive changes in their growth. Researchers have proven that hearing sounds bring genetic expressions in plants, this includes faster ripening, richer color, flavor, or more. On top of that, music confuses and drives away insects. In research of agricultural phonobiology, it is shown that the use of insecticide can be drastically reduced by using music instead.
The relationship between plants and humans is akin to a love story.
We’re not simply talking about the meaningful exchange when we communicate with plants. Instead, this love story is told through the deep interconnectedness between us two creatures. Our love story is delivered in a language that consists of breath, light, and sound, all of which carry a vibratory resonance that we experience as a felt sensation (Buffagni, 2014).
As our sounds resonate with plants and trees, our body releases the hormone oxytocin, also known as the bonding hormone. Being surrounded by nature can bring our entire system–physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual–into balance, activating our innate love for the natural world.
Our bond with plants and trees ultimately brings about the consciousness to co-creatively thrive with all Earth’s beings.
In our humble opinion, plants can indeed feel the special attention given to them and grow better because of it. Our interaction with plants is a subject that should be investigated further. Nevertheless, our love and appreciation for plants and nature have given birth to these pieces of music.
And finally, we can’t send off this album without some forewords from the man behind the music, one of Taman Hayat’s founders, Indra.
Taman Hayat: What’s the reason behind making this EP?
Indra: I was inspired by the characters of each plant at Taman Hayat. It’s not exactly about making music for plants, instead, it is creating music inspired by plants and because of our appreciation for nature.
Taman Hayat: Tell us about the process that goes behind making this EP?
Indra: The materials have been around since 2017. It started with a composition I thought of when I was inspired by a gigas to create something. The execution finally happened in 2021 when there was more time because of the pandemic.
We hope nature receives the positive emotions and returns positive energy, not just for us, but for every creature within it.
Enjoy “GIGS”, the first Taman Hayat EP, on your favorite digital streaming platforms.
Brilliant Green: The Surprising History and Science of Plant Intelligence by Stefano Mancuso and Alessandra Viola, Chapter: Hearing
The Music of The Plants by Silvia Buffagni
Plant Spirit Healing by Pam Montgomery, Chapters: The Human-Plant Connection, Plants’ Abilities to Communicate