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can i sing this as kirtan? Im confused please help

asked 2017-03-30 16:22:17 -0500

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Im very confused about kirtan and shabads. i have a few questions. my first question is can i make my own tunes for the bani using the vaja and guitar. or does it have to be set tunes and raags. ive been singing kirtan ever since in was a child, however i only sang shabads that well-known kirtanis sang with the tunes that they sang to. but now i want to compose my own tunes to the gurbani.is this allowed?

my second frustration is whether i can sing this extract of the guru granth sahib ji as kirtan or not? i have research to see if any kirtanis have sang it as a shabad and i havent found anything therefore i am very confused. I have immediately connected to this bani. Is there any particular tune or melody i must sing it to?

Raag Maajh - Guru Raam Daas Ji - Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji - Ang 94

raag maajh chaupadhe ghar 1 mahalaa 4 Raag Maajh, Chau-Padhay, First House, Fourth Mehla:

ikOankaar satinaam karataa purakh nirabhu niravair akaal moorat ajoonee saibhan gur prasaadhi || One Universal Creator God. The Name Is Truth. Creative Being Personified. No Fear. No Hatred. Image Of The Undying, Beyond Birth, Self-Existent. By Guru's Grace:

har har naam mai har man bhaaeiaa || The Name of the Lord, Har, Har, is pleasing to my mind.

vaddabhaagee har naam dhiaaeiaa || By great good fortune, I meditate on the Lord's Name.

gur poorai har naam sidhi paae'ee ko viralaa guramat chalai jeeu ||1|| The Perfect Guru has attained spiritual perfection in the Name of the Lord. How rare are those who follow the Guru's Teachings. ||1||

mai har har kharach laeiaa bann palai || I have loaded my pack with the provisions of the Name of the Lord, Har, Har. meraa praaN sakhaae'ee sadhaa naal chalai || The Companion of my breath of life shall always be with me.

gur poorai har naam dhiRaaeiaa har nihachal har dhan palai jeeu ||2|| The Perfect Guru has implanted the Lord's Name within me. I have the Imperishable Treasure of the Lord in my lap. ||2|| har har sajaN meraa preetam raaeiaa || The Lord, Har, Har, is my Best Friend; He is my Beloved Lord King.

koe'ee aaN milaavai mere praaN jeevaaeiaa || If only someone would come and introduce me to Him, the Rejuvenator of my breath of life.

hu rahi na sakaa bin dhekhe preetamaa mai neer vahe vahi chalai jeeu ||3|| I cannot survive without seeing my Beloved. My eyes are welling up with tears. ||3|| satigur mitra meraa baal sakhaae'ee ||

My Friend, the True Guru, has been my Best Friend since I was very young. hu rahi na sakaa bin dhekhe meree maae'ee || I cannot survive without seeing Him, O my mother! har jeeu kipaa karahu gur melahu jan naanak har dhan palai jeeu ||4||1|| O Dear Lord, please show Mercy to me, that I may meet the Guru. Servant Nanak gathers ... (more)

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Wow you are amazing, Carry on the brilliant work!

sanjlon gravatar imagesanjlon ( 2017-03-31 17:02:18 -0500 )edit

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answered 2017-03-30 22:08:17 -0500

strongKaur gravatar image

Hey! Yes you can make your own tunes for the Gurbani. Yes you can sing this shabad as kirtan, and I actually have sang this shabad many times. It is a popular shabad by Bhai Harjinder Singh Ji (and many others!) called “Hao Rah Na Saka Bin Dekhe Preetma” https://www.sikhnet.com/gurbani/audio... https://www.sikhnet.com/gurbani/shaba...

It’s hard to explain how to order the shabad. You can make any line the main line of your tune and you will notice for many shabads different people use different lines. Ideally it is the line that has the rahao (pause) because that is the emphasizing point of that particular section of Gurbani. You can listen to this shabad to understand how they do the order. It is easier when you read in Amrit Kirtan to understand how to do the order of a shabad. But basically certain lines are always read together. So like the three lines at the front- har har naam… vadbhagi.. and the line starting Gur pooray har naam… all are read together. You can get a sense by seeing the number after the three lines, and in some shabads after two because lines are read as couplets, etc. Then you go back to the main tune. So in the case of the shabad recording I have linked to, he reads hao reh na saka bin dekhe preetma, then he goes to Har Har sajan mera preetam raya, and finishes those three together at the BEGINNING of the shabad because those three lines are read together. THEN next, he moves to the very beginning of the shabad and starts to read the whole thing. It’s hard to explain sorry. I hope that it makes sense.

Another note here is about lines. Notice he does the shabad “Bin Dekhe Preetma, Hao rah na saka” instead of hao rah na saka. He can read it like that because he understands how the Gurbani reads and it still makes sense. That’s why it is easier to use tunes already established because the people playing them understand the Gurbani to a bit of a different level that they can understand how it reads. The app “igurbani” tells you where exactly to take a pause or space within a certain line by indicating in orange where to put the “comma” as we would in English. Like the line “gur pooray har naam dridaya small BREAK→ so that is where he changes the tune halfway through the line, and then he says the rest of the line “Har nehchal har dhan palay jeo.” Because the line reads “The perfect Guru has implanted the Lord’s Name within me. This is where the break is. Then “I have the imperishable treasure of the lord in my lap.”

I hope that gives you a bit of an idea. It would be easier if you maybe discussed with someone locally where you live if you can! Don't be afraid ... (more)

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answered 2017-03-31 08:07:14 -0500

You can sing any shabad written in Guru Granth Sahib as kirtan. You can create your own tune or notation as long as it fits under the prescribed raag. You mentioned that you want to sing the shabad "har har naam mai har man bhaaeiaa". Fourth Guru has written the instruction in the title "raag maajh chaupadhe ghar 1 mahalaa 4". The shabad should be sung in raag Maajh and first ghar. Please note that most of the raagis do not follow the title and makes their own notations in other than prescribed raag, which is absolutely wrong.

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what is first ghar? and do you know the notations for raag maajh? i want to sing this shabad with the guitar, im not sure if raags can be incorporated with the guitar

simrankaur8032 gravatar imagesimrankaur8032 ( 2017-04-01 08:02:50 -0500 )edit

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Asked: 2017-03-30 16:22:17 -0500

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Last updated: Mar 31 '17