Good morning friends. Learning Hindustani classical music was a creative process working at the level of the subconscious mind, beyond the rational mind that turned into a deeply philosophical and spiritual experience.
The ustads or masters had unusual methods. A traditional practice in the initiation ceremony of a newborn baby was to sing into his ear when he was sleeping, a kind of baptism. A tabla maestro would baptize with the baby lying on his chest and beat the rhythms of a taal or beat-cycle on his back, letting the sound sink in. This would be done often, and eventually, the child might express a craving for the music and rhythms. Only when he wept for it, or expressed an intense hunger for the sounds, would he be taught, the approach being not to ‘feed’ a child whose spirit had not awakened.
Learning was a soul-to-soul process. The student came to face his own inner obstructions. Those obstructions would come up like scum on the surface of the student’s mind, making him extremely uncomfortable. The ustad would keep a hawk’s eye to watch what was making the student uncomfortable, and then make that discomfort as obvious to him as possible. This was the technique; and many a master of old would then metaphorically ‘beat the devils out of the soul’, which could be traumatic. But nothing more than that.
The road to creativity could be a monotonous one. Long hours of repetition would be followed by the ustad asking the disciple to repeat some more, because the swaras or notes had not yet been honed to a celestial shine well.
Inherent in the repetitions was the idea that the creative process was unraveled by the method of suffocation through sheer monotony. Music is not a subject but an art, a vidya realized in the soul, not crammed through textbooks. First equip yourself to appreciate your own tradition, as deeply as possible, and then only you would be equipped to appreciate any other. The Times of India
Posted in Traditional Practice
Tagged Art, Baptism, Beat-cycle, classical music, Initiation Ceremony, Master, music, Philosophical Expereince, Rhytm, Soul to Soul Process, Spiritual Experience, Swaras, Taal, Tabla, Tbla Maestro, Traditional Practice, Ustad
Good morning friends. The Doot’s centenary gala was marked with prayer and music. Everyone expressed their joy in participating the activities.
On Sunday afternoon, buses, cars, bikes and atuo-rickshaws crowded outside St Xavier’s Loyola High School in Ahmedabad as people from across Gujarat gathered to attend the centenary year celebrations of Doot, a Catholic monthly.
The event witnessed first-of-its kind celebrations because it is the second Gujarati monthly magazine to reach the 100-year landmark, but the first one to rejoice it on such a scale.
The event started off with a prayer, followed by the unveiling of much-awaited Doot’s centenary edition and exhibition. As the evening progressed, a cultural program featuring classical dances, a documentary film on Doot’s journey, commemoration of Doot’s heartfelt articles since its first publication in 1911 and live music added to the mood of celebrations.
Presence of John Canis, Philip Clark, Bishop Thomas Parmar, Father Cedric Prakash, Jaswant Macwan and almost every writer who contributed to Doot in last 100 years added joy to the already blissful occasion.
Though today’s celebration concluded in Ahmedabad, the spirit of festivity will be carried forward as Doot celebrates its platinum jubilee in Rajkot, New Jersey (US), Vayra and Anand later this year. – The Times of India
Posted in Live Music
Tagged Ahmedabad, Anand, Bishop Thomas Parmar, Centenary Gala, Classical Dances, Commemoration of Doot’s Heartfelt Articles, Documentary Film on Doot’s Journey, Doot, Doot’s Centenary Edition, Doot’s Centenary Exhibition, Doot’s centenary Gala, Doot’s Centenary Year Celebration, Father Cedric Prakash, First-of-its-kind Celebration, Gujarat, Gujarati Monthly Magazine, Jaswant Macwan, John Canis, music, New Jersey (US), Philip Clark, Platinum Jubilee, Prayer, Rajkot, St Xavier's Loyola High School, Vayra
Good morning friends. Our kids is our treasure. It depends on us what’s the perfect way to mould them. We parents are responsible for them. So we have to give them the most. Let me share you one article I have read with reference to The Times of India.
Children are like empty suvarna paatra’, waiting to be filled to the brim. Ishira Parikh and Maulik Shah demonstrated through Dashavatar’, a 90-minute, 10-unit dance drama, each self-contained, for Ahmedabad International School how it is possible from time to time to put nectar into this paatra’ drop by drop so that the kid grows up rooted in our culture and healthy attitudes.
Still at the threshold of teenage, children have an exposure to Sanskrit through poet Jaydev, to the fascinating world of Indian mythology, the dance form Kathak they can confidently learn and Indian classical music, graceful Indian costumes, ornaments and hairdo. Had the exposure continued, some of them would almost certainly take to Kathak and some others at least appreciate classical music and Sanskrit literature.
Following Yada yada hi dharmashya glanirbhavati’, each incarnation gets celebrated as a form of Lord Vishnu with the chant of Om namo Narayana’. Each is distinguished – besides colour, narrative and mood – with neat clusters and expressive movement. The kids divide themselves into groups and move horizontally, slantwise, in concentric circles, their hands flow upward and on sides, eyes normally following them!
Elements of Kathak grow skeletal while Neeraj Parikh’s music becomes less complex with carefully slow enunciation of words of shlokas. It’s a delight watching a girl doing chakkars’, little girls acting as Vamans’, a bevy of them here emulating dance on aaj shringaar karat chali’ and mohe chhedo naa Nandkishor’ there. Seeing the combats depicted, where boys are equal partners, one feels that righteous anger has a place in life if it culminates in positive action.
Avtaar’ is an effective mythical metaphor. Kalki the 10th, still awaited of the incarnations in the cycle of divine beings could be in the form of the rising of collective social consciousness, which would through the force of its positive power combat and conquer the evil in the society and universe. The wait could be shorter if everyone in society wakes up to their dharma’ soon.