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Gurbani Raag Sorathi


Raga Sorathi appears in the Ragraala as a raging of Raga Niegha; today it belongs to the Khamaj thata. Besides Guru Nanak, Sorathi was used by Guru Nanak, Gurfi Amar DAs. Guru Ram Das, Guru Arjan and Guru Tegh Bahadur for a total of 150 ltvmtns plus numerous slokas. Sorathi belongs to the cold season and is performed in the first quarter of night. The mood is light and cheerful, with a pleasing sound resembling Raga Desh. The texts composed to this raga show how the words of the Guru can enlighten the mind. All fears vanish and one is tilled with bliss.
It is a
ragini of Megh raga and is sung at night. The Gurus have referred to the darkness of superstition and maya which envelopes the individual. Guru Nanak says:

“This mammon is the enticer of the world, o brother,
All the deeds done in its wake are sinful”[8].

Aroh : Sa Re Ma Pa Ni Sa

Avroh : Sa Re _Ni Dha, Nia Pa Dha Ma Ga Re Ni Sa

Vadi : Re

Samvadi : Dha

The melodies are characterized by sweeping phrases with glides connecting all leaps, even the shorter ones. Movement is moderately fast.

Introduction

According to Hanumant School of Music raga Sorath is a ragini (consort) of raga Megh. It is made up of a unison of Sindhvi, Kanra, Kafi and Malar ragas. This raga is included in the Ragamala listed at the end of Guru Granth Sahib. The scale and notes of the raga are as follows:

Arohi .(ascending scale) - sa re ma pa ni sa

Avrohi (descending scale) - sa re ni dha pa dha ma ga re ni sa

The vadi (most popular) note is 're' and samvadi (second most popular) note is 'dha'.

This raga is sung at the third part of the night i.e., from 12 a.m. to 3 a.m. The season of its recitation is winter (sharad) i.e., during October and November. In Guru Granth Sahib it has hymns from pages 595 - 659( 64 pages).

The Composers:

The composers of bath (hymns) in this raga are:

Gurus

  • Guru Nanak
  • Guru Angad
  • Guru Amardas
  • Guru Ramdas
  • Guru Arjan Dev
  • Guru Tegh Bahadur

Bhagats:

  • Kabir
  • Namdev
  • Ravidas
  • Bhikhen

The Structure:

The sequence of the structure of compositions in this raga are:

Gurubani:

  • Shabads (2, 3 ,4 and 5 padas)
  • Shabads (8 padas called Ashtpadis)
  • Var

Matrix

VISUAL ANALYSIS

Count of the use of Managals:

Complete Mool Mantar = 1 at page 595
Ik-ongkar Satgur Prasadh = 19

Placement and count of rahau verses:

All shabads and ashtpadis of the Gurus except Guru Tegh Bahadur (pages 595-631) have rahau verses in them, but none of the verses has numeral '1' with them. The rahau verses have been placed after the first padas of the shabads. In Guru Tegh Bhadur's compositions (pages 631 - 634), the rahau verses have numerals '1' with them and all rahau verses have been placed in the beginning of the shabad. In the Bhagat bani the rahau verses have been placed after the first padas of the shabads.

Diversification of headings & subheadings in this raga:

Page number

Heading/Subheading

595

Sorath Mehla 1 Ghar 1 chaupadas

602

Sorath Mehla 3 dotuke

608

Sorath Mehla 5 Ghar 1 tetuke

634

Sorath Mehla 1 Ghar 1 Ashtpadis chautukes

642

Raga Sorath Var Mehla 4 ki

656

Sorath

Composers Structure of Bani

 

Padas

 

 

 

 

Ashtpadis

Specialist

 

Chts

Specialist

Var

Sloaks*

Gurus

2

3

4

5

6

8 (padas)

untiled

Titled

 

 

 

 

Nanak

 

 

 

9

3

4

 

 

 

 

 

2

Angad

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1

Amardas

 

 

 

12

 

3

 

 

 

 

 

48

Ramdas

 

 

 

8

1

 

 

 

 

 

1 (29

pauris)

7

Arjan Dev

 

52

 

41

1

3

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tegh

Bahadur

 

4

8

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bhagats                        
Kabir   1 3 7                
Namdev     1 2                
RaviDas     3 2 2              
Baikhen   1 1                  

• All sloaks are included in the var of Guru Ramdas. The comment 'Shud' is recorded at the end of the var.

*Chts = Chhants

Excerpts taken from:
Guru Granth Sahib: An Advance Study
Dr Sukhbir Singh Kapoor
Vice Chancellor World Sikh University, London



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