Blog Post

"I-Dosing" on Binaural Beats can Produce a Hellish High

CH writes: "My son who is in 8th grade just told me about a horrible Demonic thing some kids are doing called 'Gate of Hades'. I don’t know if you ever heard of this, but I Googled it and was disgusted by what I saw. I would like to share this with you so you can warn other parents about this."

Gates of Hades is indeed something parents need to be concerned about. It's part of an Internet fad known as "I-dosing." It involves listening to two-toned audio files through headphones that are meant to alter brain waves the same way alcohol, marijuana and other drugs do. Teens need nothing more than headphones and a computer to get "high".

The idea, known as "binaural beats" or "brainwave entertainment" has been around for a while and is used by New Agers to aid meditation and relaxation. There are claims that binaural beats do all kinds of amazing things, such as help people memorize and learn, stop smoking, improve athletic performance and manage their weight, but there are no conclusive studies to support any of these claims. At most, a few studies suggest the beats may have a relaxing effect. All other claims are considered to be attributed to the placebo effect.

Gates of Hades is just one of the I-dosing "tunes" that teens can download and use to get "high". Here is how one teen described his experience on an I-dosing forum:

" . . . (I)t felt as if I was sinking in a really thick quicksand. Also that things got really dark . . . Suddenly, I felt as if i was falling from space to Earth, but everything was still pitch black. I felt really hot and scared that I was going to crash. (During this part my friend said that i was breathing very rapidly and deeply through my nose and that i would hold my breath for like 10 seconds).

"I started to hear two voices. One was a little girl's voice and following right after was a deep, Demonic voice. I can't remember what they were saying but it scared the living - - - - out of me. Then flashes of an image I can only depict as a wicked and horrible demon would appear. During this point I lost feeling in all of my limbs and as far as I knew I was just a falling head.

"Then this really loud noise appeared and then everything got bad.. I felt like i was just about to die but in many different ways. My friend told me that I looked as if i was going into a seizure. My friend had to take off the headphones because of my loud screaming. But the weird thing was that they were off but for a minute or two I still felt like I was there and every time my friend would talk to try to calm me he sounded like a demon."

"Once I came to, My hands were shaking really bad, My throat was dry (probably the rapid breathing), and I felt really paranoid that something was going to take me back to that hell. But as of right now I'm fine. Every once in awhile I will see that image of the demon if I'm having a nightmare but that's all . . . ."

He goes on to describe a similar bad "trip" his friend experienced who said he felt like he was in his own hell being tortured by voices in his head and "visions of demons."

"To say the least this tripped us both out," he said. "I truly believe this was a really effective eye opener on how crazy I-Doser can effect your mind."

Aside from placing teens in vulnerable spiritual and mental states, I-dosing also gives them a taste for getting "high," which is probably why many of the sites that offer the downloads also link visitors to drug and drug paraphernalia sites.

Mark Woodward, a spokesman for the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics, warned parents that I-dosing is a problem they need to address.  "We want parents to be aware of what sites kids are visiting and not just dismiss this as something harmless on the computer," Woodward said to News 9 in Oklahoma City last year. "If you want to reach these kids and save these kids and keep these kids safe, parents have to be aware and need to take action."

Even though it can be tough for a parent to know what their child is listening to online, experts say they should be on the alert if they are constantly online listening to music through their headphones. They might also hear their child laughing and/or shaking uncontrollably while listening to music, or appearing to be in an altered state of mind. Afterward, I-dosers have been known to be extremely hyper or happy after listening to the tracks.

Regardless of whether or not these tracks do anything more than produce a placebo effect, as the teen related above, these are not always nice trips and could expose a child to more dangers than they are prepared to face.

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