On the way to work this morning and found the roads were extraordinarily jam, so I hooked my earphones and started listening to the late Dr Arun Apte's live performance in 1998. This is one of the advantages of having a smartphone with Data Plan, that you can surf the web anytime, any day, anywhere.
So, I opened Youtube and since I was having a bad headache, Raag Bhoop for the Agnya was the first choice. It was soothing and there were times, when the music suddenly climax, it feels as if the music was trying to push out something. Clearing. Then when that ended, I selected Raag Darbari for the Sahasrara.
From a dramatic Raag Bhoop to a slower and quieter Raag Darbari, there's calmness on the Sahasrara. And watching Shri Mataji listening to this gave a sense of security and comfort. I wasn't listening so much to how the music was being sung, but rather was enjoying how the raga was flowing.
When I first heard the late Dr. Arun Apte and his wife, Surekha Apte sung at the Sahaj weddings in Ganapatipule 2002 and then in Pune 2008, I was lost in the world of the taal and rhythm. I especially love the mantra sung by both of them, their voices combined further make us feel the union of God together with the union of the blessed couples. This auspicious mantra gave so much of joy and love, to the married couples as well as to the audience.
Below is a video that I have taken using my mobile phone. The picture is not very clear and voice quality is also not that great. But you can hear very well, how beautiful their voices intertwining with each other and with our spirits.
I was secretly hoping that I would be able to hear this again, on my wedding day. Unfortunately, he passed away shortly before that. During my wedding, they were just reciting the mantra instead of singing them. Still work, but being a musical person, felt it was not a perfect wedding without both of them singing.
I do not know Dr Arun Apte personally, but I do feel his voice and music does bring heights to us yogis. The way he discovered which raga for which chakra and his knowledge in music was so deep and immense.
I wasn't so appreciative of ragas and indian classical music until I joined the Sahaj music class taught by one of Dr Arun Apte's students. Understanding the intricacies of indian classical music and ragas increased my interest in Sahaj music. I had Western musical background and found it to be too rigid at times. Indian classical music is much more spontaneous and relaxing.
Just few days ago, I was feeling a little down. I just sat in front of the harmonium and started playing Dha, Sa, Re and sang Ham Ksham. Immediately the Agnya feels lighter and brought me back to balance.
At times, listening to ragas like this brings serenity to a hectic environment. This music is so precious and it should not be wasted. I wish I can sing this wedding mantra and much more. Just too beautiful not to!