Tag Archives: india

RIP Pandit Ravi Shankar: Legendary Sitar Maestro…

“Pop changes week to week, month to month. But great music is like literature.” Pandit Ravi Shankar

RIP Pandit Ravi Shankar: Legendary Sitar Maestro...

RIP Pandit Ravi Shankar: Legendary Sitar Maestro…

Pandit Ravi ShankarRaga Asa Bhairav

Pandit Ravi Shankar & Anoushka ShankarRaga Anandi Kalyan

Pandit Ravi Shankar was a gifted musician and composer whose expertise on the sitar, and powerful, evocative music, brought him international recognition and well deserved accolades. He was often called the “Godfather of World Music ” as he cut across cultural boundaries to share his music globally. His genre was classical Indian music with a contemporary feel and his performances were long, inspiring musical feats that could make the spirit soar as if in deep meditation. In fact, I was exposed to his music during my ashram living years and that was the first way I got to learn about, and fall in love, with his body of work. I found his music both captivating and meditative and would listen to his performances and interviews on my CDs and TV/Radio for hours.

Over the years, Ravi Shankar traveled around the world performing his special brand of music which, as time went by, included performances with his daughter Anoushka, a talented musician in her own right. The equally talented Norah Jones is his daughter. If you’ve never heard his music, I invite you to devote some time to sit back, listen, and let the sounds wash over your body and soothe your soul. His music came into my life at an important phase in my growth and I remain grateful for the exposure.  I’ve included a few more of my favorite musical pieces from his best work; Raga Parameshwari and Mishra Bhairav, below. More below!

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Gratitude: When Divine Grace Visits…

Gratitude: When Divine Grace Visits…

“Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow. ” Innerspace

A Human Mandala: A Prayerful Pose during the Monsoons in India

A Human Mandala: A Prayerful Pose during the Monsoons in India

A few days ago, I was browsing through a friend’s online photo album when I came across an incredibly beautiful, auspicious photograph. As I looked closely at the photo of 8 young boys lying in a circle in the monsoon mud, hands in the prayer position, faces serene, I was struck by the power of the human Mandala they had created.

A Mandala (Sanskrit for circle) can be defined as a prayer filled, divine, cosmic circle representative of the completion or perfection of creation. The Mandala symbolizes the essence of our full circle journey in life. It is this life journey that opens us to myriad experiences and that reminds us to see the grace in things and to show gratitude for them.

“Happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed. Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace, and gratitude. ” Denis Waitley

Mandala: The Glow of Grace

Mandala: The Glow of Grace

A great teacher once said that we should always seek grace in all we do; God’s grace and people’s grace.
Every moment or exchange we have with others can include a measure of grace; the generosity of strangers, the goodwill of people we know and those we don’t, the food we eat and the breath we take… all come from grace.

When grace visits the landscape of our hearts, we experience a sense of gratitude. While we might not always be conscious of the things that bring grace into our lives, it behooves us to acknowledge our gifts and share our gratitude by comforting and helping others.

“Gratitude is a two fold love – love coming to visit us, and love running out to greet a welcome guest.” Henry Van Dyke

True, it is not often that we remember to walk in a state of gratitude because the norm is to receive grace and then, express our heartfelt gratitude for it. However, the attitude of gratitude is never wasted especially in these difficult times. What are you grateful for? Who do you need to send a quiet or clearly vocal thank you? Try it.

“Whatever I am offered in devotion with a pure heart – a leaf, a flower, fruit, or water – I accept with joy.” Bhagavad Gita

Mandala: The Healing Power of the Circle

Mandala: The Healing Power of the Circle

When good things happen or when a cherished wish is met, our entire being reverberates with the sweet sensation of joyful, delightful gratitude. Where did the grace come from? Did we stop to pray and say thanks?

I would love to walk in a state of constant gratitude so grace can meet me daily at my door…  I pray that whoever crosses my path is touched by divine grace and remembers to embrace their grace, be grateful and share their delight with others. What form of grace do you pray for?

Photo Credits: Monsoon in India ~ The London Telegraph
Mandalas ~ Evanizio Mende 2008

Until Next Time…
Ask. Believe. Receive. ©
Elizabeth Obih-Frank