Life · Musing · Yoga & Spirituality

Classical Music & Life : An Experiential Perspective

Until recent just a few years ago before I started meditating, my connection with music was not very deep. Once in a while, I used to tune in to Radio FM or Television to listen to the music. And that too used to be mostly the Indian Bollywood Songs or sometimes the English songs. But as soon as I started meditating, suddenly I got more interested in our traditional Indian classical music. I literally stopped listening to the music which contained words. One day I was just sitting in a public park listening to one of the Bollywood songs and this was about how much a guy loves his lover. Then suddenly I realized that most of today’s songs are just modern-day words and nothing else. If you pay deeper attention, you will realize that words are just words, they don’t have any existential meaning. This realization kind of shifted me from the music which was based on words towards the music which was more fundamental and was based on pure sounds.

That’s how I got into listening to the Indian Classical Music which is a very complex yet sophisticated amalgamation of pure sounds. On a certain day one of my friends sent me a video where he had shot the scenery of a Monsoon Rain and on the background, there was a music of pure sound which kind of melted me. I quickly asked him, what is this music, who played it and so many other questions. He said, Oh! This is ‘Voice of the Moon’ played by Sitar Maestro Anoushka Shankar. I quickly went to Youtube and downloaded voice of the moon. That’s how I started exploring more and more of Indian classical music which was purely sound-based rather than words and praises for somebody. It’s not that I hate the other music; It is simply that once you have had a taste of classical music (Be it from east or west), you do not want to get out of it and shift your direction to other music. Its been quite sometime now & whenever I get time, I simply start playing this piece of music played by Anoushka Shankar and get dissolved into the same because there is something about it which kind of captures your whole being and you get sucked into it.

Sounds are fundamental & exist in our core of being, Words only exist in the surface: I am sure, many of you might have had a transcendent experience while listening to a particular piece of music or a symphony. The fundamental reason why this happens is; every physical form has a sound attached to it and vice versa. Every sound has a physical form and every physical form has an underlying sound, which we nowadays call as the reverberation having a certain resonant frequency. The moment we listen to a certain piece of music which resonates with our being, we start to experience a deep connection with that sound. Sounds have the power that they can easily change your mood. In Indian classical music, we call them ‘Raagas’. Every Raaga which is played by the musician, There is a certain mood attached to it. If you are angry and you listen to a certain Raaga, you will immediately become peaceful. Similarly, there are certain sounds or Raagas which can make you emotional and make you cry. If you have read something about ‘Quantum Physics’, today scientists say that the whole universe is one big sound or one big energy and we all are the pop outs of that universal energy. Beyond doubt, this is today a scientifically accepted reality. That’s the reason why we seem to identify with certain sounds and get dissolved into it. The more you listen to these sounds the more you realize that you are nothing more than a reverberation in this whole existence. 

This is a very significant experience because this ultimately takes you to the experience of oneness. Oneness not just in terms of intellectual understanding, but oneness in terms of experiential reality. You suddenly realize that the source of life which is there within you is the same as in the other person or any other entity for that matter. Ever since I have come in touch with Indian classical music, this thirst for boundless expansion is increasing more and more and experientially I clearly know that I am getting closer to the fundamental nature of my existence. When you are listening to any classical music composition be it a vocal or instrumental, you immediately become one with the music and in your experience, you and the music are no longer two separate entities. In your experience, you become the music itself and when that happens suddenly you get this huge dose of blissfulness which exports your being to a different dimension of experience.


Peace and Love!



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