Nocturnal melodies Serenity Spiritual music

A nocturne of sorts…

I was reminded of this amazing ghazal by my favourite Indian exponent of the genre, Jagjit Singh.

Composed in a raag ideally suited for the night hours, this is very soothing to the ear and soul.

The ghazal is just sublime. Composed in raag Malkauns, it is the most potent stressbuster you could ever hope to get. Addictive in a healthy way, it is a wonderful nocturnal raag.

इस दुनिया में अपना क्या है

इस दुनिया में अपना क्या है
कहने को सब कुछ अपना है

मुँह देखे की बातें है सब
किसने किसको याद किया है

तेरे साथ गयी वो रौनक
अब इस शहर में रखा क्या है

बात ना कर सूरत तो दिखा दे
तेरा इस में जाता क्या है

भूल भी जाओ बीती बातें
इन बातों में रखा क्या है

इस नगरी के कुछ लोगों ने
दुःख का नाम दवा रखा है

-नसीर काज़मी

The raag itself is a beautiful one, amongst one of the oldest raags from Hindustani Classical Music. It is an audav-audav raag of the Bhairavi thaat, usually sung between 12 midnight and 3 am. (Pancham and Nishad are omitted in aaroha as well as avaroha ) According to Swarmartand Pandit Jasraj, Malkauns is a raga that is “sung during small hours of the morning, just after midnight.” He always said that the raga has a soothing and intoxicating effect.

It’s equivalent in Carnatic Music is the raag Hindolam (which is totally different from Hindol in Hindustani Classical Music). The raag is believed to have been created by Parvati to calm an enraged Shiva, who refused to calm down and performed a very violent Tandav angered by Sati’s sacrifice. Malkauns belongs to Shaivite musical school; in fact most audav (pentatonic) raags belong to Shaivite musical school.

Of all the lovely Malkauns renditions, I like this one on the flute by the one man who carried the instrument much further, far and wide after Pandit Pannalal Ghosh had made it a popular solo instrument, Pandit Hariprasad Chourasiya. He and Pandit Shivkumar Sharma are my lifelong guarantees of ridding myself of stress and everything disturbing. A sense of pacific calm is induced immediately.

Have a wonderful day ahead, folks. May Shiv himself unburden you of all your worries and fears. Stay healthy and happy


By abchandorkar

Consultant Interventional Cardiologist, Pune, India

6 replies on “A nocturne of sorts…”

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