Experience the Navarasas

Posted by on Jul-31-2010

Rasa denotes an essential mental state and is the dominant emotional theme of a work of art or the primary feeling that is evoked in the person that views, reads or hears such a work. The concept of rasas is an outstanding contribution of Indian culture to the world of art and literature. India introduced this idea of Navarasa before the world and that made great influence on all most all forms of classical arts in Indian culture. Generally, the rasas are of nine types and they are collectively called Navarasa. Bharata Muni proposed Navarasa (nine emotions) in his treatise Natyasasthra. According to Natyashasthra, nine emotions arise in human beings as a response to the situations they are facing. Each rasa, according to Natyashasthra, has a presiding deity and a specific color.

These nine emotions are Shringara (Love), Bhaynaka (terror), Hasya (Laughter), Karuna (Kind-heartedness and compassion), Roudra (Anger), Veera (Courage), Bheebhatsya (Disgust), Adbutha (Surprise), and Shantha (Peace or Tranquility). Each of these nine emotions is the resultant of each Bhava, the gestures and facial expressions of the actors. Natyasasthra identifies each Rasa with the corresponding Bhava or mood. The Natyasastra vividly describe these bhavas to create each rasa.

In Natyasasthra, all these nine emotions have been connected with colors that signify all emotions or rasas. The Aura of a frightened person is black, and the aura of an angry person is red. The nine colors that signifies each emotions are Green (Shringara), White (Hasya), Grey (Karuna), Red (Roudra), Orange (Veera), Black (Bhayanaka), Blue (Bheebhatsya), Yellow (Adbutha) and White (Shantha).

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