Saturday, September 23, 2006


Raag Majh


Raag Majh - Musicology
Courtesy : Prof. Surinder Singh(

Majha is a region in the state of Punjab in India. Punjab was and even today is divided into three different regions: Majha, Malwa and Duaaba. As with all countries; states and regions develop their own traditions, characteristics and reputations depending on their geographic surroundings, economy etc. The Majhail’s (People of Majha) were famous for their strong build and their hard working attitude because they worked in the army or very far from their homes in farms. A familiar example of this is the U.K (Scotland, Wales, Ireland and England), although part of the same country, they all have very different and varying traditions.

In Gurmatt Sangeet, there are many examples of the Sikh Guru’s using traditions already ingrained in peoples minds, to explain their message. An example of this is Aunsian.

Raag majh is based on aunsian. A rural tradition of waiting for a loved one and the hope and extreme pain or loneliness, felt while waiting. The western form of ausain is the picking off of flower petals one by one and is commonly known as “He loves me, He loves me not”. Drawing a row of lines on the floor and striking them out alternately rather then picking off petals plays Ausain.

Both these games symbolize the hope and pain of meeting your loved one who you are so desperate to meet. They also represent the anxiety that comes with not knowing the outcome and the uncertainty of whether your loved one will come or not. Even if the outcome is negative, the loved one is so dear to you that you will not feel anger but the longing to meet will become stronger and will make the relationship more close and dear.

Creation and Authorship of Raag Majh

Raag Majh is only found in Sahib Guru Granth Sahib ji and there is no evidence of Majh in any other old Granth or shasteras. That makes this raag unique and shows that it is the creation of the greatest maestro ever, Sahib Guru Arjun Dev ji.

Guru Arjun Dev ji, the younger son of the fourth Guru, Guru Ram Dass Ji was sent to Majha by his father, to attend a wedding. Guru ji was told that he would be given an order from his father, when he was to return. Guru ji had never left his family and father for such a long time before, and began to grow more and more anxious to come back. Guru Arjun ji was very creative from his early age and the Majha’s Aunsian tradition was very compelling to him. The longing to meet his great Guru and father was so great that he wrote three letters to his father. These letters contained the pain of separation and the anticipation, hope and joy of meeting. Those poetic messages become the first bani of Guru Arjun ji to meet Akal Purkh (GOD), and are under the heading of Raag Majh in Guru Granth Sahib ji.

In Guru Granth Sahib ji, Guru Arjun ji uses the emotions of pain, loneliness and expectation present in Raag Majh and aunsian to help the soul cry out to the mind in order to build an urge to meet beloved God. Guru Arjun ji used the feelings felt toward his father and Guru to explain the relationship that everyone has toward God. To make this relationship easier to understand Guru ji’s bani contains words like Father, Mother, Brother and Friend. This encourages us to examine our everyday relationships as an example to understand how to get close to Akaal Purkh.



i heart maajh...just perfect
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