Tuesday 5 November 2013

Cutting Chai with Bhawana Somaaya - Day 225

Hema Malini releases Soundarya Lahiri

05.11.2013, Mumbai 

After being an actress for almost five decades and a dancer since her childhood Hema Malini attempts to release her debut album. In keeping with her passion for dance and subsequently mythology, Hema Malini for the first time ever, in her nectar sweet voice and perfect pronunciation in Sanskrit, chants the complete Soundarya Lahari an ode to Goddess Tripursundari along with renowned singers Suresh Wadkar, Shankar Mahadevan and music composer and singer Ashit Desai.  
The devotional album comprising 100 shlokas, songs and stuti on Raj Rajeshwar is released by Times Music and considered auspicious to be chanted during Diwali time. That is why the music album was released on Dhanteras day. Amitabh Bachchan introduces the album in his baritone and explains the relevance of renowned seer Adi Shankracharya and subsequently Goddess Tripurasundari and Soundarya Lahiriahiri.
 Composed by Adi Shankaracharya the mystical poemdescribing the beauty and effulgence of the Divine Mother, Tripurasundari has attracted the attention of the enlightened devotees for centuries.  A poem of rare beauty on one level it is on another level a stotra, a hymn in praise of Goddess Tripurasundari. Encompassing a series of mantras with yantras - the diagrams, wherein the devi is conceived to be abiding.

The first 41 stanzas of the poem referred to as known as Ananda Lahari indicate the way of approaching the Paramatman through true spiritual devotion but certain unwholesome practices crept in the understanding of these hymns deviating from the popular Vedic injunctions and it fell to the lot of Sri Shankaracharya to reclaim the beauty of this work by removing misconceptions and emphasising the importance of Sri Vidya and the result was Soundarya Lahari.

Bhawana Somaaya / @ bhawanasomaaya

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