PMR Article: Why Music? – By Aaleen Shafaat (PMR)

Once I asked a musician friend, ‘why music’?

‘Water has to flow!’ he replied. It left me speechless. Music is just a sound through time and space, weaved into poetry: dreams, love, God; often made the centre around which most people breathe. Some find fame and fortune from it rest only find what is crucial to breathe: harmony. But there shall always remain a difference between a real artist and a diva. Exactly like we cannot compose an answer to where did God come from, no trace could be found as to where music originated; it was always there.

Art was intuition and if music was just to the ears, let me tell you Beethoven was deaf! It is said that .Tan-sen could work miracles with his singing. It is called nada Siddha in Sanskrit. He is supposed to have acquired such supernatural abilities that on occasion he could create rain by singing the monsoon rag Megh Malhar and he could also create fire by singing rag Dipak. Music and dance have always been realeted. Dance was born in the trance that music created. Rumi came up with the ‘order of the whirling dervishes, a sufi dance; for those Persians this was a form of Zikir.

Something recent: paimona baiday by Zeb and Hanniah is a beautiful love song that captures attention yet it is not comprehendible as the poetry is in Persian. Then the Americans were taken aback by nusrat fateh ali khan sahib, although he sung in Pakistani languages that the Americans did not understand. Music, never in history was held back by any cultural or religious boundaries in fact it connected one creed with the other; we all love Pink Floyd. Mankind yields to music no matter what form it is in. Mozart, Enigma, Beethoven etc and our very own Overload proved to the world that music is a language in itself!

Music, I would love to think is a path to God, it was inspired by nature. It would be too clichéd to say that the birds that chirp, my heart that beats and that dripping tap of my bathroom sink each holds a tune; but it is true. Our people came up with a form of trance known as the Sufi music, it touches the soul, and to me it feels like they must have seen God or their love is too pure. This made music one of the reasons why Islam spread in this region. People were inspired by culture, tradition and literature that the Arabs brought with a message of peace. Then there was difference between noise and the sound called music; Takes a soul to recognize that sound.

Ham ke Thehre ajnabi itni mulaaqaatoN ke baad
phir baneiN ge aashna kitni madaaraatoN ke baad

Nature created music and it tuned it as well, shaping air in to whistles and catharsis with the help of wood and metal thus producing sound: The shanai, sitar, flute, voilen, guitar, drums, everything. They whistle languages, listen closely, you will understand them.

your comments:


  1. I appreciate the efforts by Aaleen , its a good written article . However, its a very detailed topic that either Music is HARAAM (prohibited) or not ? I also don’t want to go into deep and argue on this, let everyone observe, think & decide.

    Those who are in favour of Music, argue , that it is not written authentically in our any religious sculpture so how can it be HARAAM ?

    The religious ones say that its a HADEES:
    “a time will come when people will start thinking that Alcohol, Ribaah(Interest) & MUSIC are HALAAL .

    Like others, I am indifferent too. I believe the music we listen to mostly, doesnt convey any message and as ISLAM says Music diverts attention of a Muslim . It diverts us and weaken the relation with God.

    Where as you talked about “birds that chirp, my heart that beats”

    my question is , Are we producing same soothing sound as nature ?

    Can you produce a similar sound as a nightangle ? dont compare Zeb with Nightangle!!

    Always remember nature is UPPER HAND. Nature is ordered & allowed by ALLAH to produce music but WE AREN’T!!!

    Dont ever consider that playing or making music is a noble cause.


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