A note on my three blogs

A note on my blogs

(1) vio; in love with india - this one is the main blog about my Indian adventures, which started in 2005. I don't write much on this blog these days because I prefer to write privately in the confidential blog. But check out the categories and the index to figure out your way. I have kept some older posts not about India but which I still find interesting or relevant in Old words. Also check out my new, fun category Only in India in which I post photos of funny, unique, Indian situations...

(2) sounds of india - this is my blog of sounds, because India wouldn't be as incredible if it was not so vibrant and just so full of incredible sounds!

(3) vio; confidential - this an extension of my main blog in which I post entries I do not want to reveal to the entire webspace for privacy or sensitivity reasons. You must receive an invitation from me and then accept the invitation to be able to read it. You may email me if you are interested in receiving an invitation.


Thursday, 22 November 2012

The essence of Indian music

"Profound differences emerge between the [western and Indian music systems, which] mirror the opposing thought processes that drive the west and the east.

The ancient western position on music was that it was made up of patterns of sound with regular melodic intervals which reflect the simple ratios by which the world is organized and make sense to our organs of perception. Western theory is thus built around perceptible, rational ideas which the human mind can see, recognize, and find proof for.

Indian music is rooted in a fundamentally different assumption - that there is a continuous, unseen, and constantly changing reality which is the backdrop for all human action and perception. It is what shapes our karma or destiny, and helps explain why seemingly inexplicable things happen to us. The notes in Indian music are thus not categorical, separate, self-contained entities, but are connected through a subtle, elusive continuum of notes that can barely be identified by the human ear. They are, in the metaphysical sense, part of that reality which lies beyond perception. These in-between notes are called srutis, and they are the essence of Indian music.

In a very literal sense, these srutis are the half notes and quarter notes that fill the intervals between two notes. But that would be a grossly incomplete description. There is much more to the sruti, for it can entirely change the reality of notes. For instance, how you reach a particular note is as important as the note itself. It may be arrived at from below, or above, after caressing that hidden note that hovers next to it, and it will evoque a completely different sensation than if the musician were to meet the note directly."

~ Namita Devidayal, The Music Room, pp.18-19 (my italics). ♥

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