Category Archives: Art

The Seventh Spring

Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn :: Four Orientals seated under a tree; bearded old men wearing turbans, seated in a half-circle on a terrace, one holding a cup, the other a book, a steep rocky outcrop behind. c.1656-1661 | Click image for larger view. | source:

Aftab Datta had promptly uploaded the following gems from his collection for the seventh anniversary of, and I am responsible for the tardiness of this post. Emerson says in Spiritual Laws, “If you visit your friend, why need you apologize for not having visited him, and waste his time and deface your own act? Visit him now.”

Happy Equinox!

muddat hu’ii hai yaar ko mihmaaN kiye hu’e
josh-e qadah se bazm chiraaghaaN kiye hu’e

it’s been some time since the beloved/friend was made a guest
[and] the mehfil illuminated with the fervor of the [wine] cup

Ahmad Ali and Rahmat Ali Khan – Shuddh Sarang
Amanat Ali and Fateh Ali Khan – Miyan Malhar
Moinuddin and Aminuddin Dagar – Durga (Khamaj Thaat)
Amir Khan – Megh (unpublished)
Anant Manohar Joshi – Mawra
Anoklal Misra – Teentaal (tabla solo)
Arnab Chakrabarty – Des (sarod)
Ashraf Sharif Khan – Chhayanat (sitar)
Azmat Hussain Khan – Shuddh Nat
Badal Khan – Bhairav Bahar (sarangi)
Bashir Hussain – Asavari (sarangi)
Begum Akhtar – morii ho tuut gayii
Bade Ghulam Ali Khan – Sohni (1954)
Bhimsen Joshi – Lalit
Bundu Khan – Tilak Kamod (sarangi)
Chand Khan – Marubehag
Fateh Ali Khan – Hamsadhwani
Fayyaz Khan – Bageshree (Tarana)
Gajananrao Joshi – Puriya
Govind Prasad Jaipurwale – Rageshree
Hamid Hussain – Madhkauns (sarangi)
Hiradai Barodekar – Todi
Ijaz Hussain Hazravi – albaila yaar russi russi janda
Ilyas Hussain Khan – Chandni Kedar
Inderlal Dhandra – Gaud Sarang (sarangi)
Ismail Azad – na hum daulat ke bhooke haiN
Jagdish Prasad – Abhogi
Kabir – Aimen (sitar)
Kalyan Mukherjea – Hansakinkini
Khadim Hussain Khan – Adana (Tarana)
Latafat Hussain Khan – Lalit (Drut)
Latafat Hussain Khan – Miyan ka Sarang
Mehdi Hassan – Desi (Ghazal)
Moinuddin Khan – Nand (sarangi)
Mujahid Hussain Khan – Puriya Kalyan
Nabi Bakhsh – Shahana (sarangi)
Nathu Khan – Lalit (sarangi)
Nazakat Ali and Zakir Ali Khan – Bilaskhani Todi
Nissar Hussain Khan – Todi
Swami Parvatikar – Todi (dattatreya veena)
Sharif Khan Poonchwale – Behag (sitar)
Rahim Fahimuddin Dagar – Lalit
Ramzan Khan – Nat Bhairav (sarangi)
Rashid Khan – Jog
Rasiklal Andharia – Shuddh Sarang
Naseeruddin Saami – Darbari, Drut in Adana (Lahore Music Forum)
Naseeruddin Saami – Mand
Sadiq Ali Khan – Shankara (been)
Nazakat Ali and Salamat Ali Khan – Alhaiya Bilawal (Radio Pakistan)
Salamat Ali and Sharafat Salamat – Kamod
Shahid Parvez – Shyam Kalyan (sitar)
Shakoor Khan – Kedar (sarangi)
Sharafat Hussain Khan – Raisa Kanada
Sultan Khan – Patdeep (sarangi)
Surendranath – Darbari (been)
Swami Vallabhdas – Jog
Tarapada Chakraborty – Marwa
Vasantrao Deshpande – Chhayanat
Vijay Raghav Rao – Abhogi (bansuri)
Zia Moinuddin Dagar – Bhairavi (been)

The Art of Living – Stanford Humanities

“In The Art of Living, a first-year Introduction to the Humanities course, three humanities professors examine great works of philosophy and literature to explore what it might take to lead a well-lived life.” — Stanford Humanities

1. Introduction to The Art of Living
2. Visions of Love
3. It is Not Hard at All to Challenge Socrates
4. A Life of Reason? Socrates vs. Alcibiades
5. Your Worm is the Only Emperor for Diet
6. Hamlet: Knight of Resignation
7. For Hecuba! What’s Hecuba to him or he to Hecuba that he should weep for her?…The play’s the thing.
8. Roundtable Discussion: Shakespeare
9. Abraham is the Knight of Faith: Faith versus Love, Morals, and Reason Itself
10. Was it So Easy a Matter Not to be Mistaken?
11. Abraham is the Knight of Faith: On Roles of Reason and Faith
12. What One Should Learn from Artists
13. Recurrence and Redemption or Why Science is Just as Necessary as Art
14. Morality Strikes Back
15. The Narrative Construction of the Self
16. The Flight of Self
17. It’s not about you living longer. It’s about how you live and why.

A Gathering of Holy Men of Different Faiths - Mir Kalan Khan  (active ca. 1730–80) | | Click image for larger view.

sarangi turns seven

A Gathering of Holy Men of Different Faiths - Mir Kalan Khan (active ca. 1730–80) | | Click image for larger view.


dauRe hai phir har ek gul-o-laalah par khayaal
.sad gulsitaaN nigaah kaa saamaaN kiye hu’e

again thought runs on every single rose and tulip
having made a hundred gardens measures for the gaze

On this pleasant occasion, we want to thank all the friends and visitors of for their contributions, comments, appreciation and encouragement. This project flourishes because of you. Music updates will be forthcoming everyday for the next seven days as a part of this seven-year celebration.

Warm regards,

PS See this post for the music update: The Seventh Spring

Section from a Quran Manuscript, 18th century Morocco or Tunisia. Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper. | via | Click image for larger view.


Section from a Quran Manuscript, 18th century Morocco or Tunisia. Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper. | via | Click image for larger view.

“it is as difficult to present a fixed image of a character as of societies and passions. For a character alters no less than they do, and if one tries to take a snapshot of what is relatively immutable in it, one finds it presenting a succession of different aspects … to the disconcerted lens” (Marcel Proust, In Search of Lost Time: The Captive, 373).

Anqa | Islamic Medical Manuscripts at the National Library of Medicine

mudd’a anqa hai apne aalam-e taqrir ka – Ghalib

Anqa | Islamic Medical Manuscripts at the National Library of Medicine

Anqa: A bird from Arabic story tradition, whose single defining trait is his not-there-ness. Whenever you try to catch him, he’s gone. — Frances Pritchett

For a detailed discussion of this ghazal, please visit Frances Pritchett’s site.

Frieze tile with phoenix, ca. 1270s Iran; probably Takht-i Sulayman; Fritware, overglaze luster-painted. The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Creativity & Mental Illness

nah puuchh be-khudii-e aish-e maqdam-e sailaab
kih naachte haiN paRe sar bah sar dar-o-diivaar

don’t ask about the self-lessness of the enjoyment of the coming of the flood
for/since they dance, fallen, end to end– doors and walls {58,9} Ghalib

Even if there are connections between creativity and madness, it does not mean that madness is the premise. Mental illnesses are generally disabling, and it could be a chance occurrence that being human, exceptionally creative minds too have their share of them. Acute sensitivity can lead to fruitful distraction and mood lability, but chaos is nothing without kosmos and vice versa.

“There is always some madness in love. But there is also always some reason in madness.”

“One must still have chaos in oneself to be able to give birth to a dancing star.”

Nietzsche, Also Sprach Zarathustra

Illness and Art – Arts & Academe – The Chronicle of Higher Education

The reason why a work of genius is not easily admired from the first is that the man who has created it is extraordinary, that few other men resemble him.  It is his work itself that, by fertilizing the rare minds capable of understanding it, will make them increase and multiply.  It was Beethoven’s quartets themselves (the Twelfth, Thirteenth, Fourteenth and Fifteenth) that devoted half a century to forming, fashioning and enlarging the audience for Beethoven’s quartets, thus marking, like every great work of art, an advance if not in the quality of artists at least in the community of minds, largely composed today of what was not to be found when the work first appeared, that is to say of persons capable of appreciating it.  What is called posterity is the posterity of the work of art.  It is essential that the work (leaving out of account, for simplicity’s sake, the contingency that several men of genius may at the same time be working along parallel lines to create a more instructed public in the future, from which other men of genius will benefit)  should create its own posterity.  For if the work were held in reserve, were revealed only to posterity, that audience, for that particular work, would be not posterity, but a group of contemporaries who were merely living half a century later in time.  And so it is essential that the artist (and this is what Vinteuil had done), if he wishes his work to be free to follow its own course, should launch it, there where there is sufficient depth, boldly into the distant future.  

Marcel Proust, In Search Of Lost Time: Within a Budding Grove, page 142-143.