Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Mahalakshmi Ashtakam - Prayer for Abundance of Wealth, Washing Away Sins, and Protection from Enemies

The Mahalakshmi Ashtakam stotram is a 8 couplet hymn that gives an immense sense of peace and well being to the passionate devotee. The 8 couplets in this hymn describe and praise the virtues and powers of the Goddess of True Wealth and Well-being, Sri Mahalakshmi. One usually could easily associate wealth with money but the true meaning of the hymn refers more to true wealth which can be interpreted to one's definition of wealth - such as health, knowledge, pursuit of good, etc. Viewing the hymn from a broader spiritual perspective would help you connect deeper with your inner spirit more easily.

I have composed the music/tune in various Carnatic music ragas - aka Raaga Maalikai or a sequence of melodic modes - for the Mahalakshmi Ashtakam Stotram prayer. Here's the song rendition on YouTube:

If you are looking for the meaning of the prayer in English language, here's a selected PDF file link, that I picked based on the quality of translation - most other translations did not reflect the true spirituality behind this prayer as much as this translation did.

The last part of the rendition has a Beejakshara Mantram that is as follows :

Om Shreem Hreem Shreem 
Kamale Kamalaalaye Prasiddha Prasiddha
Om Shreem Hreem Shreem 
Mahalaxmye Namaha ||
Om Yakshaaya Kuberaaya Vaishravanaaya 
Dhanadhaanya  Adhipataye
Dhanadhaanya Samridhdhim May Dehi Daanya Swaaha ||

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Hanuman Chalisa - Prayer For Strength, Health, Courage and Protection

Music has been the mainstay of much of my life and I owe it to the Almighty for this blessing. I love singing and composing music, whenever time permits, with interests in Indian classical (Hindustani, Carnatic, Folk) music, light music, and film music. I also enjoy western soft rock, country, blues, and  sufi music.

I have had about a decade of training in Indian Classical Carnatic Music back in India.

In early 2010, I had this ardent desire to compose a tune for this very powerful prayer for strength, courage and well-being.  I decided to start work on it and researched various ragas/melodic modulations that could work for it.  As I went through existing available compositions of Hanuman Chalisa, I found most of them were well done in the collective singing genre a.k.a Bhajan style. My aim was to present this mantra in a format that would assist with meditative listening. I chose Raag Bageshri for its captivating set of notes, and lasting power and because the Hanuman Chalisa has not been presented in this raga before. I chose not to have any rhythms but use the melodic notes and supporting chords as the best way to help achieve meditative listening.

I hope you will enjoy this rendition while helping realize peace, and oneness with the almighty God.

The Hanuman Chalisa is a song written by Goswami Tulsidas in praise of Lord Hanuman. This 40 verse song provides deep insights into Lord Hanuman's role as a model devotee of Sri Rama, Sri Lakshmana and Goddess Sita. The prayer is recited by ardent devotees for strength, courage, alertness, good health, communication skills and overall protection to one's life in addition to seeking freedom from the cycle of life and death.

Buy the MP3 recording of this song from Amazon.com

And here is the YouTube video with lyrics in Hindi and English. ((it is about 10 mins long with content edited to accomodate YouTube constraints)

Your comments and feedback are much appreciated and most welcome.