India is one country which nurtures a lot of smaller Indians in it. The country has a culturally diverse population and also have innumerable traditions, beliefs, art forms, cuisines, attires, languages, religions & festivals. On considering the music of India both Carnatic &Hindustani music has a history spanning millennia and has been developed over several eras.
Music plays an effective role in helping us to be better and fruitful in this rushing lifestyle of people towards their lives. Listening to certain music can help us to maintain good health. On that case, the term “RAGA” which is predominantly used in Indian music plays a key role. They are often referred to as “Miracle of microtones” and the swaras can range between 5 to 7 which covers 22 Sruti’s in an octave. The flexibility in Indian music provides the performer with an opportunity to oscillate swaras where music plays a therapeutic role. The frequencies can reach the neighbouring swaras which intensifies the listener’s musical experience. Over time the raga music therapy system can trim a person’s mind and behavioural pattern. So each raga is associated with a definite mood or sentiment. Every listener will have a connection to their favourite raga emotionally and physically.
The awareness of raga therapy has to grow in society. Research has embarked on a mission to re-discover the therapeutic ragas on a trial and error basis which is already providing results. Exposure to musical rhythms in bhajans and kirtans is capable of relaxing the mind which can also provide positive hormonal changes in the system. We all suffer stress due to our hectic lifestyle and music is a safe solution to take some time off.
Listed below are some of my favourite ragas and their benefits:
1) Sahana – Helps maintain emotional coolness, balance and control anger
2) Bhairavi – Provides relief for tuberculosis, cancer, severe cold, sinus, toothache
3) Hindolam – Helps blood purification, improves digestion
4) Kapi – Helps to get over anxiety and depression
5) Mohanam – Treatment for migraine
6) Anandabhairavi – Brings down blood pressure
7) Bageshree – To stimulate secretion of insulin
8) Kharaharapriya – Cures heart diseases and necrosis
9) Neelambari – To get rid of insomnia
If you want to know more about raga therapy it will be helpful if you read this research article “Indian classical ragas to cure diseases” by Joyanta Sarkar, Utpal Biswas Department of Instrumental Music, Rabindra Bharati University.