Strings of Meditation
Our daily lives are monotonous and full of stress. We all need a getaway – to relax, to rewind, and to recharge our batteries. Music can help! Since time immemorial, Music has been an indispensable part of our existence. It has the power to help us transcend our drudgery, and on a more tangible level, it can boost our mood, reduce stress, and improve our health and overall well-being.
According to several researchers, almost all human beings have positive experiences when listening to music – any kind of music – happy, sad, soft or loud. It depends on the listener’s personal taste and the mental state at that particular moment.
Indian classical music has gone through centuries of research to be able to pinpoint the exact combination of notes and their expression to have a desired effect on the mind. Each Raga can express a variety of emotions that touch a chord. Many learned scholars have said that music is the food for the soul. American songwriter and composer, Jason Mraz has very rightly said, “Music is a weapon in the war against unhappiness.”
Music has also been used as therapy for a long time. It has been proved to be helpful in coping with pain, managing stress and improving memory. In fact, some researchers found that patients experienced less pain and anxiety when they listened to music before, during, or after surgery.
Listening to Raga music live can be an uplifting experience on its own. Yoga centers and wellness retreats around the world organize Indian classical music sessions on a regular basis.
Apart from the elements of peace and happiness, our classical music can also pave the path towards spirituality. The famous German composer, Ludwig van Beethoven was influenced by ancient Indian texts and music. He said, “Music is the mediator between the spiritual and the sensual life.”
There is a reason why Sitar, in particular, caught the attention of the entire world. This instrument has such a unique appeal that it stirred emotions across the entire globe. A well-tuned Sitar is delightfully sweet and assertively bold at the same time. A Sitar when well-played can reach depths within the heart and soul, beyond the imagination of both the player and the listener.
Sahana Banerjee is one of the leading Sitarists of India. Her music has reached staggering heights of craftsmanship owing to the optimum mix of creativity and virtuosity while maintaining the purity of Raga. With a very deep understanding of each Raga, she can transport her audience to a different level with the depth of her expression. Her recitals create an aura filled with hope, happiness and spirituality.
Alaap in Hindustani Classical Music is the first movement of a recital. It is a slow, untimed exploration of the Raga - a way to create an ambience, constructing a groundwork for the entire concert. Each Raga portrays a set of emotions. But this set is not fixed. It can vary according to the interpretation of a particular artist and it also depends on the mood of the artist on that particular occasion. Sahana Banerjee is especially known for her soul stirring Alaaps. She has developed a unique style which is peaceful and intriguing at the same time.
Sahana Banerjee has been a part of Meditative retreats in Mumbai and Pune as well as in different parts of Germany and France.
An Indian Classical music oriented meditative session is ideal for Retreats and Yoga Centres alike. The world has become more agitated with the advent of Covid-19. This has proved to be an extraordinary situation in more ways than any one in particular. Not only has this pandemic brought in tangible danger to lives and livelihoods, it has forced people to rethink and introspect. It has made people reflect on the futility of material things and look for solace in spirituality. This is the time when people turn away from “easy” entertainment and seek music that is deep, meaningful and can give peace.
Sahana’s deep reflection on this, compelled her to re-create a few musical pieces, with the sole intention of healing. Her choice of Ragas, along with her improvisation skills have brought to the fore melodies that soothe, revive and rejuvenate.
Sahana Banerjee is available for special meditative music sessions for corporate events in national and international level.