Saturday, 21 February 2015

Sound of music - Tibetan singing bowls and more

So recently I stumbled upon Tibetan singing bowls.

They are addictive! Thankfully there are many videos on YouTube with Tibetan singing bowls. As of now, I don’t understand the significance of the different types. They are spread across 7 chakras or more generally the music is for sleep, healing, meditation etc but for me more or less all are the same, I just like some more than the others.

Instead of meditation (so far I fail with it, classic case of the chaotic mind), I run them in the background when working (I listen to sleep music when making reports!) or when unwinding at home after a long day. It works wonders to reduce the mental chatter.

I have also been listening to some mild anime soundtracks. For those of you who don’t know anime, a small introduction would be they are Japanese animated series, aimed for a general audience instead of just children (Google Naruto) and they have some of the best music ever (most of it is Japanese).

One of my all time favorites when it comes to anime ost is the soundtrack of Mushishi.

It’s hard to describe it in words. To best some it up, I’ll say its music that seeps inside me, it is absorbed in my bloodstream and flows with it. 

I have also been exploring the soundtrack of Inuyasha. I was all teary eyed after listening to something like this, again when making reports! And my colleague was like - o_o why-you-crying? 

All in all, lately I have moved from songs to music without words. Of course I still listen to songs but this another dimension of music which I hadn't explored before. I don’t know how many around me listen to wordless music but it brings in something new altogether. Sheer sound, even without language, evokes a powerful emotion.

I have been reading works by Osho lately, and he had mentioned that sound is fundamental to man - if we listen to something pleasant then we feel good and if we listen to the rants of a madman, we also feel like we are going mad. I couldn't agree more.

There are so many things that we listen to externally, the background noise and I wonder how it affects our psyche. The random commercials, some annoying, some not so annoying, each telling you to buy this or do that, because you are worth it, because you deserve it, because it’s ‘in’, or more commonly because it’ll get you that girl/guy and what not.

Then there is the din of everyday life. I am sure those travelling in Mumbai locals would relate to the cat fights/dog fights we end up hearing, sometimes even when earphones are plugged in! There is random music in pubs, malls, discs or at times even in a taxi/auto. Sad songs, happy songs, love songs, old songs, item numbers all of them filter through your head without your consent. 

It has become tricky business to steal a moment of peaceful silence. Silence is supposed to be the most golden of them all, it might be a good thing to build a relationship with it early on. Or so I am trying. As with everything, it’s a long way to go. But lazy weekend afternoons with particularly no aim and nothing to do are giving me a start (it often ends in a nap but let’s not get into that).

For now I’ll leave you with another of my favorite tracks from Mushishi. The tracks are by Toshio Masuda, he has given tracks for a lot of shows including first season of Naruto.

The sounds seem to be from another world. I bow down to all these composers and their talent!