Gurbani Shabad Kirtan

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Object Of Kirtan

Kirtan is not performed to make Gurbani pleasing and palatable. The Gurus were very clear about its objective. They warned the listeners not to confuse it with other types of music or deem it as a mode of entertainment. The Guru has pronounced that Kirtan is the magical formula to keep the human soul afloat in the dark era of Kaljug provided the devotee sings the pure melodies with his or her heart closely focused on the meaning and true spirit of the Gurbani.< The filth of our bad actions is removed by listening and practising the teachings of the Guru. Sacred Music has an equally important place in our life, as it helps to preserve our heritage and reminds of our moral duties as Sikhs to live up to the high standards set by our forefathers.
"Guru Nanak regarded hymn-singing and hymn-listening with devotion as a link between man and God.The best way to worship God is to blend the Divine Word with sacred music.The singing produces a response or echo within the soul.Guru Nanak felt that Gurbani and Kirtan are superior to all spiritual practices and as such they lead to the door of salvation."
Guru Arjan Dev compiled the Aad Granth as the comprehensive technology of Naad,a universal collection of hymns from many spiritual traditions.He organised the hymns according to Raga and often included instructions about style and specific tunes to be applied to the hymns.

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Sikh Music

In Sikhism the Sikh Gurus have bestowed a unique and effective technology to be attached to God at every moment of our lives, to pick us up when we are down, to give us strength when we are weak, during time of happiness (like marriage and when a new born baby enters the family) and to help us train our minds to shy away from sin. This powerful technology in Sikhism is called 'GURMAT SANGEET' which essentially is a detailed and scientific structure of Musicology to help someone harness the power of ones emotions such as sadness, happiness, longing, excitement, etc. and channel these emotions to unite our minds with the Ultimate Reality, God. All the hymns that have been written in Sri Guru Granth Sahib (the Holy Scripture of Sikhism) are meant to be sung in prescribed musical measures which are essentially meant to convey a specific emotion to the human psyche that is consistent with the theme of the hymn being sung. These musical measures can be called 'moods' in English and in the language of Sikhism these musical measures called 'RAAG'. It is important to mention that Sri Guru Granth Sahib has been compiled and indexed not accordingly to chronological order or by author but are categorized by musical measures. In Sri Guru Granth Sahib there are 31 RAAGA's and 31 sub-Raagas and is indexed according to these 31 Musical Measures/Raagas. Hence the essence of Gurmat Sangeet is the singing of Gurbani (sacred hymns/Guru's word) by RAAGI'S in the manner prescribed in Sri Guru Granth Sahib (the Holy Scripture of Sikhism)
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