70 Questions and Answers on Prabhata Samgiita: Shambhushivananda

70 Questions and Answers on Prabhata Samgiita: Shambhushivananda

Q1: How many and which languages have the songs of PS been composed?

A: A total of 5018 songs were composed by Shrii P.R.Sarkar in eight languages viz., Bengali, Samskrta, Hindi, Urdu, English, Maethali, Angika, Magahi. A total of about 40 songs were composed in languages other than Bengali. 5018 songs of PS were composed in a total of 8 years,1 month and 7 days (2957 days).He gave 62 songs while in the nursing home in Kolkata. and composed 602 songs in Madhu Koraka in Tiljala, Kolkata.3749 songs were composed in Madhu Malainca in Lake Gardens MG Quarter, Kolkata.

Q2: Where and when was the first and last song of PS composed?

A: The first song was composed on September 14,1982 in Deogarh (Bihar/now Jharkhand, India) and the last two songs were composed in Tiljala, Kolkata,India. The 5017th song was on establishing Anandanagar and 5018th song was on establishing AM Gurukula.

Q3: What are the four specialties of a style of Samgiita?

A: Samgiita is the combination of song,dance and instrumental music. Its four specialties are bha’va (idea), chanda(rhythm), sura(melody), and bha’s’a (lyrics)

Q4: List the broad categories and examples in which PS songs fall under?

A: PS represents a wide variety. There songs for different seasons, different occasions & festivals, different ragas, different styles, from different countries, conveying different ideations etc. More specifically, there are songs for: New Year(130,127); Birthday(135); Ananda Purnima(12,135,403); Shravanii Purnima(4954); Diipavali(63,1637); Spring Songs(103,1682); Summer Songs(109); Drought Songs(119); Rainy Season(116); Winter(97); Baby Naming(59); Funeral(60); Marriage(58); Tree Planting Ceremony(136); Anandanagar-related (5017);Gurukula(5018); PROUT(1340,1341,4795); Mahaprayan(2085,3857); Full Moon(903); Dream Songs(80); VSS Song(50,74); Songs for Wts(342);For One human Society (880); Farewell Song(1698,2085,3857);Krsna Gitii(4281,4425); Shiva Gitii(1418,1565,2505,4279);Songs in different languages like Hindi(4070,4195,4512), Urdu(25,4072,4146,4335) etc;Autumn(123); AMURT (3714,1222,3713,1335); Surrender(2777,2300,1859); Folk Songs(485,911);Neohumanism Songs(647,3821); Jhumur(3910), Ghazals (25,1187,212);Tandava(3282,4983,4722); Mystic songs (1440,1423,1556,347,372,266,1341,1413,1702,1789,1557,1859,3906); Laying the foundation stone(137) ;SSAC(1330,1331,1767,1815) ; PMSA/PWSA(1127); Desert songs(1345);Baul(911,2085);Meditation (162,4673); Lotus(3191); Sunflower(2935); Israeli(4582),Persian(4644), Chinese(14, 4621);Icelandic(1932), Swedish(4864);Songs on ecological balance (2192),Iberian (663), Balkan (4697);Children Songs( 29,303,361,1784,4682)Polish(2608); Brothers day (4473), Thumri (3481,1419); Rowing Boat song Bha’tiya’li (919) ;Blues/Sad song (2023) Song in English(5009) , Qawalii(223), Kiirtan(138-150),Scandinavian (960) etc

Q5: What ragas & melodic structures have the PS songs been composed in?

A: Ragas are the principal modes of Indian classical music. They are six in number. Raginiis are 36 in number and secondary to the principal modes. Each ra’ga or ra’gin’ii is a rhythmic or melodic pattern used as a basis of improvisation. PS has been composed in innumerable ragas and raginiis. Even some of the ragas in which PS has been composed have yet to be named. Some examples are:

Behag(1022); Desh (1269); Bhaeravii(4673); Mishra Chandrakaus (1717); Mishra kafi (2023); Jaunpuri (236); Mishra Shiv rainjani (3769); Yaman (1565); Mishra yaman (2929); jay jayanti (828); Malkaus (34); Chayanat (3881); Darbari Kanada (1039); Diipak (175) This raga was sung during Lord Shiva’s time; Pure-Classical (1443,1002,828,82,187,203,748); Semi-Classical (4621, 3481,1419); Tappa (2302); Ghazal-Urdu (25);Hava-Ghazal (1187);Bengal Ghazal (212); Urdu Kawalii (2230- its original home was near Port of Aden; Bengal-Kawalii (25); Song from Buddhist era (7);Bhaga Kiirtan (181,276,1612,2546); Indian-Persian Classical (1443); Indo-Chinese(1078); Jhumur (1078,476); Baul (2085,911); Pada kiirtan (138-150),Thumri (3481,1419); etc.

Q6: How does PS compare with Rabindra Sam’giita?

A: While Rabindra Nath Tagore also composed many songs throughout his life, his work was like a poet or devotee reaching unto the infinite. On the other hand, Baba’s contributions are of a different genius. It is like Lord giving words to the diverse feelings of the devotee. PS also has many similar tunes as used in RS but there is a unique blending of different styles never tried before.

Q7: To whom has Ba’ba’ Shrii Prabhat Rainjan Sarkar dedicated his book of Sam’giita (first published in 1987)?

A: To the sacred memory of the late Ramnidhi Gupta (Nidhi Babu) and the late Ustad Alauddin Khan, two music maestros who brought about epoch making changes in the world of music.

Q 8: Is there any example of any PS which can cure any physical or psychic disorder of any kind?

A: There are different ragas for different times of the day and they have effect on human body and on animals too. The therapeutic benefits of PS are many. It is contented that PS can have beneficial effect in case of epilepsy, gout, hysteria,melancholia,grief, shock or any nervous problem. PS can vibrate nerve fibers and bring back vital energy. It can remove pain in the upper portion of the arm. It can remove seminal weakness (via 3282,4983,4722) and help in sound sleep. Even losing hair can be stopped. This is an area of empirical research.

Q9: On which single day Baba composed maximum number of PS songs?

A: On November 20,1984, Baba composed 15 songs (2101-2115) in his Lake Gardens residence in Kolkata. They were composed so effortlessly that it filled all around him with awe and admiration.

Q 10. What is the secret of the lyrical beauty of PS?

A: Bengali is one of those languages which predominantly uses komala-svara ( soft sounding letters).Lyrics sound sweet if letters belonging to komala-svara (ca and ta) are used properly with in the various lines. The sweetness is enhanced if kathor dhvani (hard sounds-major notes or tones) are scattered through the lines,followed immediately by komal-svara (soft sounds-minor notes or semi-tones). PS is the living testimony of application of this lyrical science.

Q 11. What is the symbolic significance of PS being named so?

A: Prabhata Samgiita were composed by Prabhat Rainjan Sarkar. So many may think that it is named so to indicate the author who composed PS. In fact, the real significance of PS is that they represent the new dawn (prabhata) in the world of samgiita. It is indeed a revolution in the world of music. It heralds the dawn of a new era of music and culture. PS carries both a wide variety and depth of emotion that is unparalleled . It fills the vacuum caused by the dark night of psuedo-culture. It takes us from the world of staticity and mere sensory pleasure unto the celestial realm,to the realm of devotion-the abode of true inner peace and awakening.

Q 12: What bha’vas are expressed in PS?

A: PS is a store house of wide variety of bha’vas (ideations) ranging from viraha (pain of separation) to the madhur bha’va -joy of unison with the Supreme beloved. There are songs carrying the feelings of optimism(2102,1574,1754,1695,1393); universalism(880) ; service spirit (3714); personification of love(1918); different types of devotion(1041); sakha-bha’va (607) ; social awareness (4795); love for flora and fauna(647,3821); varnaghyada’na(1403); anudhya’na(162); abhiman (1762,1831,2005); dhya’na (1058,1956) ,jyotirdhyana (1301), downfall of communism (4705); savikalpa samadhi (383); marching song (1330);mysticism (925,1440); prama-siddhi (3879), viraha (1753,1627,1585,1545,1068,1033).This area needs more research.

Q13.At which places did Baba compose PS?

A: Almost all PS were composed in India. Most of them were composed in MG Quarters in Kolkata and Anandanagar. Other places where he composed included Deogarh, Ranchi, Tatanagar, Daltonganj, Kanpur, Agra, Bilaspur, Gadaipur(Delhi);Allahabad, Gwalior,Betia, Digha, Bhagalpur, Burdwan, Dhanbad, Ananda Shiila’, Mathura, Jammu, Anandapur Sahib, Fatehpur Sikri, Gorakhpur, Jaipur, Kota, Banda,Varanasi, Bishnupur…Some were composed while traveling on the road. Some were even composed in the nursing home in Kolkata.

Q14 How is PS spelled in Roman Samskrta?

A: Prabha’ta Sam’giita

Q15. How many primary raga’s and raginiis are there?

A: 6 ragas and 36 raginiis

Q16. Has any scholar done a literary appraisal of PS?

A: Many scholars have attempted. Among them are late Professor Ramaranjan Mukherji ,formerly Vice-Chancellor of Burdwan University and Rabindra Bharati University, and Chancellor of Tirupati Sanskrit University & Dr. Subhas Sarkar,formerly Head of the Department and Shakespeare Professsor of English at Rabindra Bharati University,Kolkata. In the words of late Prof.Ramaranjan Mukherji:

“ A poet does not suddenly appear in the field of literary art, nor does a literary thought emerge all of a sudden. There is continuity in the chain of ideas, and there is a tradition which is inherited by all literary artists. Indian seers first started carving out their poetical paintings in the morning of humankind, and the thoughts projected by them are contained in the miniature word -paintings contained in the Samhita’s. The craving of eternal humanity for Truth, Beauty and Bliss- our unending aspiration to have a state of Bliss,associated with the Infinite- starts its journey from the period of Samhitas and winds its course through the Upanishads and Epics, the specimens of literary artists and systems of philosophy. This eternal longing ultimately appears in the writings of literary artists and philosophers of contemporary period, like Sri Ramakrishna and Vivekananda, Tagore and Sri Aurobindo, and finally in Prabhat Rainjan Sarkar, who has tried to rescue the Supra-sensuous from the morass in which it has found itself sunk due to the onslaught of the sensuous and the physical. The lyrics of Prabhat Rainjan Sarkar represent the final results of the confrontation between the sensuous and the Super-sensuous, the physical and the Supra-physical, the material and the spiritual-the confrontation in which the Supra-sensuous and the spiritual have always come out victorious.”

In the words of Prof. Subhas Sarkar :

“The devotional and esoteric poetry of India,which has a great tradition that has been nurtured by the contributions of the South Indian Alwar poets, Vaesnava saint-poets,Meerabai, Tulsidas, Kabir and Tagore, finds a significant and great exponent in modern times in P.R.Sarkar.His Prabhat Samgiita is a testimony to the richness of that tradition,which continues unabated.Sarkar’s importance ,however, lies in his originality of approach and enrichment of that tradition by imparting to it a Neohumanistic bias which adapts devotional poetry to the idea of a human commitment and “mission” for the welfare of all beings. The application of his neohumanistic ideas and Proutist beliefs, making spirituality an essential part of his implementation of ideas in life, has given a new dimension to his devotional and esoteric poetry. If he was a mystic poet in his quest for meaning in life and in his sincere endeavour to correlate the human with the divine, his utmost sincerity even in his contemplative poetry brings in a neo-vedantic zeal which is very close to that of the great humanist thinker and religious philosopher Swami Vivekananda. Even Sri Aurobindo’s zeal for a spiritual evolution of humanity and his concept of involution receive a new interpretation in P.R.Sarkar’s novel idea of Neohumanism. This places the well-being and continuous progress of all human beings at the centre, while inalienably linking us up with the whole of creation by investing in us the responsibility for the universal well-being of all living beings and even the inanimate,encompassing the entirety of Nature itself. This at once makes Shri P.R.Sarkar a significant poet of Nature and humanity, and a mystic poet who brings spirituality down to earth, to the everyday life of all existence. Here esoteric poetry comes to be integrated into life itself.”

Q17. What is the inner import of Sam’giita?

A: The totality of song,instrumental play and dance (giita-va’dya-nrtya) is called Sam’giita (music). Language(lyrics), bha’va (idea), rhythm, and melody are the indispensable parts of a song. In instrumental music, rhythm is predominant, melody is subordinate , and language is absolutely nil. Dance is customarily divided in to two categories: gestural (use of mudra’) and rhythmic. The gestures give expression to inner sentiment, and the rhythm gives it dynamism. If dance is only gestural devoid of rhythm, it is called pantomime,not dance. And dance devoid of gestures is nothing but another form of physical exercise- it is not art. In acting there is both language and gesture and in recitation, there is only language. Thus in acting there is greater scope for the expression of refined aesthetics taste than in recitation.

When the song is composed only to express the laughter and tears of ordinary life,there is hardly any difficulty in conveying this to the ears and hearts of the people: the song discharges its responsibility well enough through the medium of ordinary language and melody. But where the feelings and sensibilities are deep and subtle-where one has to create vibrations in the molecules and atoms of the body,in the chords of the heart -there the music has to follow an extra-ordinaary path: hence to those who are incapable of ingesting the subtle feelings of the science of music, the ala’pa or introductory portion of the classical piece,will be nothing but pra’la’pa or delirious raving. PS falls in that special category where scores of subtle and deep sentiments of the human heart are expressed in colourful melodies and rhythms. Humans are always yearning for the unknown. PS fills that need and appeals to the intuitional faculty of the human mind. The ideal of the artist is to be established in transcendentality beyond the bounds of the sensory world. The cultivation of fine aarts is but a mockery on the path of those who have not developed spiritual sentiment or accepted the spiritual ideal as the goal of life. Thus, PS goads us to the inner core of art & aesthetics- a tactual experience of transcendental world.

Q 18:What forums were created by Shrii P.R.Sarkar for the popularization of PS?

A: RAWA (ERAWS); Spandanik (PU); Chandosik (VSS); Nandosik (ASD); Surasaptak (SDM)

Q19. What is the original home of Qawalii?

A: the original home the Qawalii was near the port of Aden. The Urdu style of Qawalii later was popular in Pakistan and the Bengal later also adopted it. PS Songs #25, 223 give us a taste of that tradition.

Q20. Who is “Aja’na Pathik” referred in PS?

A: Aja’na Pathik means “Unknown Traveller”.It is the personification of the Transcendental Entity, the Supreme Consciousness. Supreme Entity is not like a judge of a court but the divine father who loves His creation and stays eternally with Its creation . He is none else but the Taraka brahma – the tat’astha consciousness that links the expressed and the unexpressed. Unknown Traveller- Aja’na Pathik is none else but Ba’ba’ of this creation who likes to play hide and seek with His creation.

Q 21. What are the five compulsory songs of PS?

A: The compulsory songs are #154,158,159,162 and 163. These compulsory songs were chosen in the initial days of PS because of their spiritual significance and could be sung before any spiritual collective function. Of course, one is not restricted to sing any of the PS songs appropriate to a particular occasion. Now of course, one can prepare one’s own repertoire from among a large selection to fit the occasion where the songs are being sung.

Q22: Which song(s) conveys the spiritual anguish of a spiritual aspirant in PS?

A: #1627- kato kache chile dure chole gele….##2023 eto dukha diye a’ma’re……there are many more, ofcourse.

Q23. How many songs did Baba compose in Deogarh when he first started?

A: Twenty Five Songs #1-25. (14th Sept. 1982 – 28th Sept.,1982)

Q:24.What was the first song composed in Anandanagar and when?

A: Song # 26 on October 4th,1982 bandhu gao gao madhugiiti,tandra’ bhenge diyo..Later, many songs were composed there.

Q:25 Which was the first song composed in Madhu Ma’lainca (LakeGardens,Kolkata)and when?

A: On 19th Oct. 1982 Song # 38 Se je eseche mor hrdaye guinjariya’..later many more were composed there.

Q26: Which was the first song first composed in Madhu korak (Tiljala) in Kolkata and when?

A: November 12,1982 Song #104 Nrtyaer ta’le ta’le nrtya’ter chande…Later many songs were composed there.

Q27:Is PS a subset of Nandan-vijinana (aesthetic science) or Mohan-Vijanana (Supra-aesthetic science)?

A: In my humble opinion, Prabhata Samgiita falls on the silver lining between nandan-vijinana and mohan vijanana. It definitely begins as nandan-vijinana but it also transports the singer to the celestial realm of mohan-vijinana. The beginning of the process of losing oneself to the very source of joy,is known as Mohan-vijinana or the science of supra-aesthetics. And the entity to whom we lose ourselves is Mohana,or the embodiment of enchantment. ParamaPurusa (Supreme Consciousness) is Mohana as He enchants one and all. Thus, PS brings us to the doorsteps of Mohana-Vijanana. In PS, there are also some kiirtan tunes which fall in the category of Mohan-Vijinana. Since sam’giita includes dance,song and instrumental music, kiirtan as samgiita falls with in the category of mohana-vijanana. It can ensconce the spiritual aspirant in the infinite rhythm and charm of Parama Purusha. PS should be sung before kiirtan.

Q 28: What is sura-saptaka ?

A: The seven musical notes sa’,re,ga’,ma’,pa’,dha’,ni constitutes sura-saptaka or the Indian musical notes, and the western musical octave comprises the eight notes do,re,mi,fa’,sol,la’,si,do..do comes twice and thus the combination of eight produces the octave.The sura-saptaka and occidental musical octave have no basic difference. Sura-saptaka was invented by Lord Sadashiva and taught to Maharsi Bharata.Sura-saptaka is part of svara sha’stra or sarvodaya or shabda-sha’stra of Shiva.

Q 29: What is difference between giita (song) and sam’giita and gandharva vidya?

A: What is sung meticulously, emitting sound in a pleasing sequence in unison with melody, rhythm and beat is giita (song). And if it gets associated with dance and instrumental music, it becomes sam’giita. (sam+gae+kta). Sam’giita is nothing but gandharva-vidya’.(science of music).At the first stage it is to be learnt, then knowing is required, which calls for the subjectivization of external objectivity. Later it must be made part and parcel of one’s nature. And when it becomes such,it is worthy to be called gandharva-vidya.

Q30. Why is the virtuoso-artist called sam’giitajina and not sam’giita shilpii?

A: In Samskrta,the word shilpana means an activity done with one’s hands that requires artistic skill (in a word, handicraft).But the song sung by a singer is in no way a work done by hand. So the word sam’giita shilpii is a misnomer. However, those who play musical instrument have a scope to display the dexterity of their hands and therefore, can be called sam’giita shilpii.

Q31. What is a ghara’n’a’?

A: Ghara’n’a’ is a particular style of rendition. The rule, method or style of singing varies as per the master of compositions. It gives rise to different ghara’n’a’s. Noted families of musicians also create their own ghara’n’a’s. In various countries or places, songs are sung differently at particular stages of time in diverse raga’s and ragin’iis. PS may also be called a unique ghara’n’a’ of devotional music.

Q 32. What are the different stages of expression of sound?

A: According to the science of acoustics, the origin or the seed of a word remains in latent form in para’shakti [the primordial desire for expression]. The dormant condition of a word is called para’. It goes through other stages : pashyanti..madhyama’..dyotma’na’..vaekharii..shrutigocara’. Shrutigocara’ is the stage when the idea borne by the uvula comes out of the parted lips. When human beings attain proficiency in controlling vaekharii power by dint of spiritual sa’dhana (meditation) ,it is called vaekharii siddhi.

Q33. How can sweetness be added to a quivering voice while singing PS?

A: Adding sweetness to a quivering voice warrants concentration of mind in the ku’rma na’d’ii [energy channels related to vocal cord] which is close to the centre of vaekharii power.

Q34. What was the traditional remedy for sore-throat for singers in the Rgvedic and Yajurvedic age?

A: Human beings have been singing since pre-historic times. In Rkvedic period, songs were primarily in long and elongated voices. In the yajurvedic period, there were songs in short,long and elongated forms. In the atharveda period also, there were songs in short and long voices-although we cannot say that elongated forms was totally absent. Singing a song requires the use of uvula. As it came under strain during singing, the uvula and other parts of throat contracted diseases and became painful. In the remote past, people tied gossamer or pashm (gossamer or fleece or hair of all kinds) to the end of a slender stick dipped it into warm honey and anointed the uvula and other affected parts of the throat. Some people used warm or fresh ghee in the same way. In the Yajurvedic age, if a singer , male or female, suffered from sore-throat, they used to fasten cotton to a slender stick or coconut stick, soak it in warm ghee or black pepper powder and use it to rub the affected parts of the throat (as throat paint).

Q35. Which is the oldest stringed musical instrument?

A: It was called Ekta’ra’- one stringed musical instrument. It was invented during pre-historic times to bring resonance to the sound of the string. Shiva improved upon this ekta’ra’ and made the viin’ or viin’a’.This viin’a’ was the first musical instrument so devised as to maintain unison with surasaptaka or musical octave. The lower portion of stringed instruments, which at one time used to be made from hard dry ripe gourd shells, is known as kolambaka in samskrta. This shell especially helps to deepen the sound, thereby the sound becomes harmonious.

Q36. Where did Sitar, Tabla’ & Violin originate?

A: Although the viin’ originated in India and has been there since the time of Shiva, its descendent violin came from Italia. Tabla’ is the metamorphosed form of mrdanga and has originated in India. Sita’r ,however, has come from Persia. The word ‘sitar’ means a combination of three strings.

Q37. Where did the gazal originate?

A: Gazal originated in Persia and Ha’va’ gazal came from Turkey. In PS, there are ghazals and hava’-gazals too.

Q38. Why is Shiva’ also called Konesh?

A: The regions or points on the lower part of a stringed instrument and its upper part between which the strings remain attached are called kon’a or kon’avindu. As Shiva’ could tune the stringed instruments very well, he was called Kon’esh. It is noteworthy that as the first stringed instrument of this world viin’ was invented by Shiva, the other name of viin’ or viin’a’ (lyre) is shivakona’.

Q39. What can the fine tuning of stringed musical instruments teach us?

A: It is said “In a loose string, the melody remains mute; If pulled, the delicate string is torn apart.” Human life is somewhat like that also. If one practices too much austerities, tender human sensitivities snap and break into smithereens…the soft ,delicate parts of the mind get charred and petrified. On the other hand, if life is made akin to a loose string, the nobler yearnings of life degenerates into the life of an animal characterized only by bathing,eating and sleeping. Hence one must never allow the string of life to be too loose. But also the string of life should not be left to snap due to excessive strain. The ideal course is the middle path which Buddha called majjhima’ ma’gga. The ideal course of life is neither left oriented nor right oriented. The middle path is the divinely exquisite, super-human existence.

Q40. Ca’rushiila’ was the name given to which type of women in Gupta period of Indian history?

A: Women who were adept in fine arts were known as ca’rushiila’ in the society during Gupta period of Indian history.

Q 41. Have new ragas and raginiis been created in PS?

A: On April 29,1984 , Shrii P.R. Sarkar commented that he has already created a few new ragas and ra’giniis in PS and have not yet named them. Since then, he composed so many more songs and there is all the possibility that there is a storehouse of new ra’gas and ra’gin’iis among his compositions.

Q 42. Is there frequent use of extra-long (pluta) a and a’ vowels in PS?

A: According to Shrii P.R.Sarkar, “there is a definite need for the use of the extra -long a and a’ vowels- at least in the case of sam’giita. The inadequacy of letters (to express mental feelings) in general conversation is much more prominent in the case of music. Symbols similar to lupta a can be used with various other vowels [to represent long or extra-long vowels]; if used with music, both the teachers and the students of music will be immensely benefited.” Ba’ba’ introduced the use of n extra-long ‘ sound to be sung in the kheyal style at the end of the first line of each antara’ (stanza) in PS.

Q 43. What is dhrupadii style of music?

A: That which is mastered by continuous arduous practice is called dhrupada. Dhrupada music is a certain type of method or style where the music is fixed in a certain scale. This method or style may differ from place to place. From each distinct style emerges a different ghara’n’a’. When the rendering styles become rigidly confined to only certain specific notes corresponding to a particular raga and ra’ginii, they may become monotonous and die out. The attempt to break this monotony found its way into kheya’l where the vocalist is given some freedom while maintaining the correct scales. The languages which follow strict rules of grammar are also called dhrupadii languages. Dhrupadii is a sort of classical language or music.

Q 44 How does ba’nshii (flute) derive its name?

A: A bamboo is called bansha in samskrta. It was observed that hollow bamboos allow the wind to pass through it and can create different type of sounds. So from these hollow bamboos (bansha) primary musical instruments were created and these flutes came to be called banshii. The different sounds created when the flow of air is divided and obstructed came to be called flute sounds. So this bamboo flute was the first musical instrument created by nature. Afterword, by regulating the passage of air through the bamboo in musical rhythm and time, the musical scale was brought forth.

Q45. Which song of PS has a melodic structure from Hawa-Ghazal?

A: Song # 1187 Toma’rii Priiti te gar’a’,toma’ri giiti te bhara’…

Q46. Who was Mahars’i Bharata?What is his historical contribution to the music world?

A: Mahars’i Bharata was born during the time of Sadashiva. Shiva taught him music and directed that he should teach it to anyone who has ardent interest in learning irrespective of any discrimination due to caste, creed or worldly status.

Q47. From whom did the first humans learn to sing?

A: Humans learned to sing from sounds of birds or animals. Shiva observed that the sounds produced by birds and animals maintain a harmonious adjustment with the undulations of the sound waves of the universe. Based on the sounds of the seven creatures, Shiva evolved the seven musical notes.

Q 48. How can we recover the lost charming notes and melodies?

A; According to P.R. Sarkar, there is no reason of disillusionment. “If people only develop their vigour, discipline, simplicity, and make intense effort, then success will come automatically. The lost treasure of the past will be fully restored to human society.” Gandharva microvita can aid us too.

Q49. What was Baba’s system of giving these songs of PS?

A: Usually, when Ba’ba’ was ready to give a song , he will ask his PA for the ga’n party ( a group of three persons designated to take dictation of the song) to be present outside his door. There were ofcourse exceptions when the words were taken only by His Personal assistant esp. when he was in the nursing home or when he was traveling. He would usually first hum and sing the melody and then give the lyrics. The words were immediately noted down and he will then ask the song-party (consisting of one, two or three persons) to sing the melody to him and once they were able to capture the tune and words properly, they were asked to practice it and immediately record the melody for posterity. Later when he would go for the evening or morning walk, song party was expected to sing the new songs to him so that he could correct any mistakes , if any. Sometimes, he would spend a long time explaining about the lyrics, raga, melody or the information connected with the song.

Q50. What is the url of prabhata sam’giita website and what information is contained therein?

A: www.prabhatasamgiita.net The website has the lyrics of all 5018 songs and many of the recorded songs can be heard.

Q51. What is the role of gandharva microvita in PS?

A: Gandharva microvita can aid in reclaiming many lost melodies and can impart us the joy of the subtle sentiments contained in the PS.

Q52. How many songs were composed in Samskrta in PS?

A: Eight #3653,4279,4281,2505,3951,2526,3246,4425

Q53. What songs of PS are in English?

A: It is heard that Baba composed about 100 songs in English while he was a young boy of about 10 years. However, we have only three songs in English in PS. Songs # 5009,5008,68

Q54. Baba gave first initiation to a robber on Shravanii Purn’ima when was only 18 years old. Which song of PS reminds us of that historical event ?

A: Song # 4954

Q55. Does PS also contain a collection of songs in Urdu/Hindi?

A: About twenty songs. Song # 25, 4172, 4167, 4979, 4078, 4168, 4146, 4072, 4335, 4170, 4062, 4283, 4327, 4165, 4733, 4135, 4070, 4195, 4171, 4512.

Q56.Why PS is sometimes called the songs of Mysticism?

A: Mysticism is an unending endeavour to link finite with the infinite. In PS also, we find the similar attempt. All songs take us from the mundane to the transcendental.

Q57. Is there a PS for every social function of AM ? Give examples.

A: Yes. PS contains songs for almost every occasion and festivals. House Entry Ceremony (137); Baby naming Ceremony (59); Tree planting Ceremony (136); Wedding Song (58); Birthday (132); Funeral (60); Ananda Purn’ima (12,133,134,135,403); Diipa’valii (63,1637); New Years day (127,130,131); Vasantotsava – Spring Song (105,1682,3110); Flag Ceremony (50); Marching Song (74); Summer Song (110,119); Rainy Season (116); Autumn (123); End of Autumn (90,93);Winter (99); End of Winter (101), Mahaprayan (2085)

Q58. Which is the song with scandinavian tune and oriental structure?

A; Song # 960

Q59. Why is PS composed only in Bengali, Samskrta or Indic languages?

A: It is obvious from Baba’s works on grammer and philology that He was the Master of all languages and encouraged each local language and even dialects. Yet, He chose to give the songs in Bengali and a few other Indic languages. Bengali is a living language and contains more than 92% samskrta words. Baba wanted to popularize Samskrta words because it has the largest vocabulary for expressing subtle bha’va’s (sentiments and thoughts). Respecting the laws of musical jurisprudence, PS is given mostly in one language but it has synthesized many different traditions, styles, ragas, and raginiis. In future, it will become easier to do research on PS through the proficiency in a single language. Furthermore, as mentioned before, Bengali is one of those languages which predominantly uses komala-svara (soft sounding letters).This specialty adds to the lyrical beauty of songs when combined with kathor dhvani (hard sounds).

Q60. Is there any example of any extinct raga which has been revived in PS?

A: There are many as alluded by Baba Himself. One example is Song # 175 (Diipak Ra’ga) which was sung during Shiva’s time 7000 years ago.

Q61. It is said that Rev. Ba’ba’ had disclosed that he had composed many songs during his school days. Why did he wait so long before giving PS?

A: The timing of every action of Ba’ba’ itself is a mystery and yet a work of art. He was the Master of utilizing his time and that is the reason He was able to accomplish so much during his short stay on this planet earth. PS can be considered a musical exposition of all his philosophy. So after giving most essential elements of His philosophy- Spiritual, Social etc, he began the task of expressing it in poetic form for those who can not read or write but could listen the songs and get the same benefit of all His thoughts.

Q62. What is the distinction between oriental and occidental dances?

A: The primary difference is that oriental dance uses more of mudra and occidental dances rely more on rhythm.

Q63. Have any famous singers sung PS so far?

A: Yes. Many leading Bengali & other singers have tried and they have all expressed their honour to be able to sing the songs composed by musical & spiritual genius of our times, Shri P.R.Sarkar. Among them are Ram Kumar Chattopadhay, Anup Jalota, Jayashri Gupta, Madhuri Chattopadhay, Kavita K., S. Goswami, Kanchana Bandopaddhaya and many many others.

Q 64. Is there a song of PS which can be considered as the best of the compositions of Shri P.R. Sarkar?

A: I have many favorites and probably you and everyone else who loves PS have their own selection of their favorites. Depending on the mood, the state of mind and phase of one’s life, one is attracted to different songs. Also according to the temperament of the person, one is attracted to different songs. Herein, lies the beauty of mass appeal of PS. It can cater to the spiritual needs of all irrespective of their state of spiritual development. Incidentally, one of my favourites is Classical Song # 33 Tomar na’me, toma’r ga’ne hayechi a’panha’ra..In your name, in your song- I lose myself. I used to hear Ac.Tadbhavanandaji sing this song on roof top in Tiljala, Kolkata in the early morning and it was an enchanting experience. I also like some songs composed by Ba’ba’ in Bheravi ra’ga. In a nutshell, PS is the revolution in the world of spiritual music and will continue to inspire humans for all generations to come due to its diversity and transcendental nature.

Q65. Is there any song that demonstrates the lyrical beauty of PS?

A: I personally loved song # 3476 when I first listed to it where the lyrics are musical in their cadences and structure. The symbolism used in the last stanza is beautiful indeed. There are however, scores of even better examples. One of the specialty of PS lyrics is also that it is filled with charming rhythmic notes. Dr. Subhas Sarkar has elaborately described the lyrical beauty in PS through examples from Song # 6, 48 ,84, 174, 292, 299, 335, 391, 438, 448, 513, 519, 539, 608, 646, 663, 755, 758, 761, 772, 990, 1002, 1017, 1155, 1162, 1168, 1197, 1245, 1251, 1421, 1591, 1877, 2061, 2612, 3249, 3665, 4289, 4559. Musicality heightens and intensifies the emotions articulated in poetry. In PS, we find an eloquent expression of this.

Q 66. What is a Cho dance?

A: Cho is a war folk dance performed in Rahr (Bengal). It was performed after battle during times of rest in the military camp. It contains lots of mudra’s. The dancer only dances and does not sing. Another person sings and narrates in song what is taking place. The faces are hidden in masks and elaborate costumes are used to decorate the dancers. This dance was performed in front of Ba’ba’ at Anandanagar DMC’s esp on the RAWA Cultural nights.

Q67. What is lalita carana, ca’rukala or lalitakala ?

A: All these terms signify the cultivation of fine arts. Human beings express their feelings in different ways. The feeling human beings express in the physical realm is called worldly action. When expression is brought to the psychic realm, it is called lalita carana [cultivation of fine arts]. Lalita carana is also called simply “the fine arts” or “subtler arts”.In ancient literature,the word ca’rukala’ [ca’ru means “charming” and kala’ means”art”. These days, lalita-kala’ is more often used in the same sense. Lalita represents arousing of happiness or bliss. The dance invented by Pa’rvati, Shiva’s spouse is called Lalita-Ma’rmika. Lalita helps people in their spiritual progress and psychic expansion. Kiirtan can be called Lalita-dance. In PS , there are also many kiirtan tunes.

Q68. Why is singing of PS made compulsory in all AM functions esp. Paincajanya, Dharmacakras, and social functions of Ananda Marga by Shrii Shrii Anandamurtiiji?

A: It is said ,“Dhyan mulam guru murti, puja mulam, guru padam; Mantra mulam guru vakyam, moks’a mulam,guru krpa”.Shrii Shrii Anandamurtiiji has blessed us with PS through the medium of innumerable melodies and songs. The singing of PS gently transports our mind into a spiritual ideation and brings us to the door step of Supreme Consciousness (Parama Purus’a). So, PS, Kiirtan and Spiritual Sadhana are usually done in combination for maximum spiritual benefit.

Q69. Is it necessary to learn Bengali (or Samskrta) in order to enjoy or to get the benefits of PS?

A:Not necessarily. Language (lyrics) is only one aspect of the four essential aspects of Samgiita -bha’va, chanda, sura being the others. Understanding the meaning of the words used in PS definitely adds to the enjoyment of PS. The therapeutic benefits of PS can be derived both by singing and listening PS.

Q70. What is Prabhat Samgiita Academy and where are they located?

A: Currently, all songs have been originally recorded in Kolkata. Ac. Priyashivananda Avt. has made a big contribution in this work along with Ac.Tattvavedananda and Ac. Nityasatyanandaji There are few Prabhata Sam’giita Academies in the world today. Once we have a sufficient number of accomplished teachers in PS, Ananda Marga Gurukula will establish such academies on every continent. Prashiksana Matha in Sweden has already made a beginning in this sacred work. We invite all lovers of PS to join hands to further the cause of PS and bring this great gift of beloved Ba’ba’ to the entire humanity.

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