August in India

The month of August has been an intense period of riaz, or practicing. I’ve been in Bhopal, M.P., India, staying at my Gurus’ Dhrupad Sansthan, practicing from 5:30 a.m. to about 10:00 p.m. every day. Spending time with Gurujis has been revelatory. As always, they are pushing me to listen harder, focus my mind better, and stay in tune. The tuning is an especially deep subject. It’s more than just finding the correct the frequency. It is a relationship with the tanpura (the drone instrument we use in Dhrupad) that extends from pitch precision outwards to mind-body connection, to really listening to the way our voices merge and blend and speak, not just with the tanpura, but with each other and ourselves, and with the world at large. I’m missing my family and looking forward to seeing them next week, but I’m also cherishing every moment that I’m here, going deeper into naad, or the yoga of sound.

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