Ustad Amjad Ali Khan live in concert
As he strummed on his instrument- with the tip of his finger nails… everything fell still. Forgotten were the careless whispers, the loud guffaws and everything in between. The occasional clearing of the throat or even the rustle of his crisp turquoise blue kurta were drowned in the sound that emanated from that shining instrument… a sweet, delicate yet sharp sound that permeated the environment. Ah! Wasn’t it bliss to hear the maestro at work? Anyone who has heard Ustad Amjad Ali Khan ji at the Sarod will know what it is like to be transported into a state of peace and joy. One can’t but help flowing with the notes and yet, the mind comes to a rare stand still! Such is meditation- flowing with the breath and watching the mind come to a halt…
It is amazing the effect that sounds have on living beings- everything ranging from plants, water, animals to of course- the social animals ;) It’s true that singing to our plants, talking to them can make them happy and encourage them to grow faster… I tried it with my little rose bush- for some reason, it didn’t bear flowers in the season that it should and after a few days of chatting with it, viola! There were 3 beautiful buds- bursting to bloom… J just by being a happy rose plant! Anyway, that’s another story for another day- how sounds and vibrations affect the plant kingdom.
Coming back to the sounds and their effect on the human body and mind complex; each sound has a distinct impact on a designation region in the body leading to an overall sense of well being and relaxation. There is a lot of research going on about this, about sounds and how they affect the body- a science that our ancient Rishi’s, Muni’s, Ustads had mastered and handed down over generations through the ragas and mantras. Each chakra (energy center) in the body responds to a particular sound, a particular vibration and through those sounds and vibrations, we can unravel the mysteries of the universe. By just meditating on those mantra’s we can get a glimpse of restful awareness of Samdhi… all we need to do, is flow with the notes, with the sounds, with the music…
Like the wise one has said-
Stretching sound is music
Stretching movement is dance
Stretching the smile is laughter
Stretching the mind is meditation
Stretching life is celebration
Stretching the devotee is God
Stretching feeling is ecstasy
Stretching emptiness is bliss!