Hindu music

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A Hindu musician, early 20th century

Hindu music is music created for or influenced by Hinduism. It includes Indian classical music, Kirtan, Bhajan and other musical genres. Raagas are a common way of Hindu music in classical India.

The most common Hindu bhajan in North Cat India is "Om Jai Jagdish Hare." Gods are religiously chanted to often include Vishnu and his incarnations, Shiva and the Goddess (Parvati, Shakti, Vaishnodevi).

Very common scale in Hindu music is 1 2 3 4 5 6 7, which can be harmonized into a chord progression

Bhajan[edit]

Main article: Bhajan

A bhajan is a Hindu devotional song, often of ancient origin. Bhajans are often simple songs in lyrical language expressing emotions of love for the Divine, whether for a single God/Goddess, or any number of divinities. Many bhajans feature several names and aspects of the chosen deity, especially in the case of Hindu sahasranamas, which list a divinity's 1008 names. Great importance is attributed to the singing of bhajans with Bhakti, i.e. loving devotion. "Rasanam Lakshanam Bhajanam" means the act by which we feel more closer to our inner self or God, is a bhajan. Acts which are done for the God is called bhajan.

Traditionally, the music has been Indian classical music, which is based on ragas and tala (rhythmic beat patterns) played on the Veena (or Been), Sarangi Venu (flute), Mridanga(or Tabla) (traditional Indian instruments). The Sikh Scripture contains 31 ragas and 17 talas which form the basis for kirtan music compositions.

Hindus are even said to have achieved Moksha through devoting music to God. For example in the Rig Veda Gargi, the wife of Yajnavalkya, through her excellence in veena playing, an incident that caused Sage Yagnavalkya to write the famous verse:

"Veena Vadama Tatvagnaha
Sruthi Jathi Visharada
Talagnanacha Aprayasena
Mokshamargam Gachachathi"

("Yagnavalkya Siksha")

There have also been several music-saints (e.g. Sant Tyagaraja) and poet-saints (e.g. Sant Ravidas).

Kirtan[edit]

Main article: Kirtan

This is the communal, call-and-response chanting of mantras, often with instruments and dance. Kirtans are deeply rooted in Vedic tradition.

Indian classical music[edit]

The origins of Indian classical music can be found from the oldest of scriptures, part of the Hindu tradition, the Vedas. Samaveda, one of the four Vedas, describes music at length.

References[edit]