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OTHERS Suprava MisraSuprava Mishra is an exponent of Odissi. Founder of Aum Dance Academy, Suprava is also an official of the Department of Telecommunications, Government of India. She has performed widely in India and abroad and has received several awards and recognation SRINGAR RASA IN ODISSI DANCE

The universal but unique phenomenon known as dance springs from man's innermost creative impulses, religious urges, emotions and sensibilities. The aesthetic foundations of this Indian art form are laid on the rock foundations of spiritual sadhana or rigorous discipline leading to mokshya or liberation. Aesthetics as a branch of Philosophy enquires into the ultimate cause and source of dance and its imotional content and significance as a thing of beauty and joy forever. Dance manifested through rhythmic movements is sensous, but the experince of ananda (bliss) in it is transcendental and spiritual. In Indian aesthetic rasa(mood) or flavour, as the cause of ananda(bliss), is central and fundamental. It is also the essence of beauty and harmony. The ultimate Reality, or Brahman, both in its impersonal aspects,is Sachidanda (sat,chit,ananda),that is he is Existence Consciousness-Bliss absolute. Ananda (bliss) and Rasa (sentiment) are two aspects of the same Reality. Therefore God is Rasa as well.

Dance is a composite art, enfolding in its range several other fine arts as well, of course music goes with dance, dance has also in it the elements of sculpture, poetry and drama. In one sense it may be said to be a complete art, a comprehensive art. Dance represents a beautiful synthesis of many other art forms. Different arts, independent in their own way, actually have a common ground of the same blissful aesthetic experience. This aesthetic thread of Rasa or bliss is the basic concept which runs through and combines all art forms into one manifestation and experience of the beautiful and blissful.

Thus they play the dual role of beneficiary and benefactor to one another and in the process enriches others and is enriched themselves. The dancer and the spectator share this common bliss and ecstatic experience. Indian classical dance pre-supposes a dancer and an audience both well oriented, initiated and cultivated so as to be possessed of the same aesthetic sensibilities forming an emotional bridge, an aesthetic rapport between the two. It is a kind of participation in an inner spiritual vision and enlightenment. This common sharing transforms a dance recital into a holy recital, a spiritual interaction or communication.

The rasa realized and experienced both by the performer and the viewer remains the same impersonal and objective entity. It is an art concealing art, totally impersonal, objective, traditional, deliberate, and elaborate in technique and appeal. It breaks a new ground of perception, opens entirely a new vision of Reality. We all as human beings desire deeply to be released from the prison of our ego, to experience that state of being which is blissful, the condition of oneness and togetherness with the universal spirit. Dance recitals help us to regain that lost heaven of unity and oneness.

The constituent elements of the state of rasa or bliss are vibhava (cause of emotion), anubhava (effect of emotion) and sanchari or vyabhichari bhava (subordinate emotions). These in proper combination transform the sthai bhava (primary emotion) into rasa or bliss. Sthai bhava are corresponding to the nine rasas or sentiments sringar (love), vira (heroism), bibhatsa (disgust), raudra (anger), hasya(mirth), bhayanaka (terror), karuna (pity), adbhuta (wonder), shanta (tranquility ). In regard to the evocation of rasa in the context of dancing, Nandikeswar wrote, " Jato hasta stato drusti jato drusti stato mana: jato mana stato bhavo jato bhava stato rasa:" It means 'For wherever the hand moves, there the glances follow, where the glances go, the mind follows, where the mind goes, the mood follows, where the mood goes, there is the flavour (rasa).'

The enjoyment of rasa, in its universalized state with the help of dance, liberates a person however temporarily from the bonds of I-ness and My-ness. This state signifies release from the slavery of the senses and mind, a state of bliss and peace and liberation from the limitations of the phenomenal world.

From all the nine rasas sringar rasa is the main rasa. It is written in Upanishad and also in general we can see that pure love is very much essential in human's life. This sringar rasa also originates from the enjoyment of pure love. According to Dhananjaya, the writer of Dasarupaka sringar rasa is of three types.

1. Ayoga sringar:

In this type of sringar the lovers have a deep attraction towards each other but they cannot unite due to some obstruction, it may be due to their parents or some heavenly reasons. For example in Kalidas's "Malavika Agnimitra" the love between Malavika & Agnimitra is ayoga sringar because Malavika is merely a dancer in the king Agnimitra's kingdom.

2. Bipra Prayog Sringar:

This is the stage of the lover after once they met each other. It is again of two type, (a) Pravasrupa Viyog (b) Manarupa Viyog.

In pravasrupa viyog the hero is not in home, he has gone outside the country due to some reason. So the heroine is in the state of viraha, she is awaiting for her hero to comeback very anxiously. Like the wife of Yakhya in Kalidas's 'Meghadoot'.

In manarupa Viyog the heroine is angry with her hero because her hero has attracted to other woman. Her anger is due to jealousy. It is described in the Jaydev's Geet-Govinda "Yahee Madhava Yahee Kesava ma bada kaitava bada". It means Radha was angry with Shrikrishna and telling him to go away from her place. This is due to the jealousy since Krishna has spend the night with Chandravali before he came to meet Radha.

3. Sambhog Sringar:

Here the lovers are involved in making love with each other. Like in Jaydev's Geet-Govinda the sambhog sringar between Shrikrishna and Radha. The description is "Sakhihe kesimathan Mudaram". Radha is narrating to her sakhi how she has enjoyed the sringar with Shrikrishna.

From the world history we can also see that the story of Laila-Majnu, Hir-Ranja, Shakespere's drama Romeo-Juliate, all are based on the union or separation of lovers, the pure love which all are based on sringar rasa. Here I have tried to establish the sringar rasa in odissi dance through the Sanskrit text like Jaydev's Geetgovinda, Kalidas's Meghdoot, Malavika-Agnimitra, Bhartuhari's Sringar Satak etc. On stage with the famous lasya bhangi of odissi we can establish the sringar rasa. We can perform solo as well as dance dramas in accordance with these sanskrit text. In this way we can popularise this dance form because man all around the world by the very nature is attracted by Sringar Rasa. So it is the best method to popularise the dance form of odissi through the display of sringar rasa in the dance drama form or the solo dance form by using the sanskrit literature so that more people will be getting involved to this dance form. Odissi is also a very soft dance and there is vast scope of abhinayas in this dance form where a dancer can express oneself and explain to the audience the concept of sringar rasa. Here I will like to take some Sanskrit literature as follows to explain above concept.

(1) Jayadev's Shri Geetagovinda:

"Ratisukhasare gatamabhisare madan manohara besam,
na kuru nitambini gaman bilambini manusarat hridayesam(1)
Dhirasamire yamunatire basati bane banamali,
Pinapayodhara parisaramardana chanchala karayugasali(2)

Here sakhi is narrating to Radha that Shrikrishna is in a hilarious mood sitting at the bank of river Jamuna awaiting for her. His heart is full of love for Radha. So sakhi is requesting Radha to go to Krishna without any delay decorating herself as abhisarika nayika.

(2) Kalidas's Meghadootam:

I will briefly describe here regarding meghdoot of great poet kalidas. In meghdoot he describe about the sorrowful condition of yakhaya who lives in Ramgiri moutain seperated from his wife who is in Alkapuri. He was the servant of kuber in alkapuri and due to some mistake caused by him kuber cursed him and send him to Ramagiri. He passed eight month there and when rainy season came he was totally upset. He was thinking about his wife when he saw the cloud in the sky. He was so blind and so immersed with his love so that he assumed the cloud as a person and try to send the message to his lover who is in alkapuri through the cloud.

Haste lilakamalake balakundanubidhei
Meeta lodhraprasavarajasa pandutamanane shree:
Chudapase nabkuradake charu karne shirisham
Simante cha twadupagamajam yatra nipam badhunam(1)
Tanwi shyama shikharadasana pakwabimbadharosthi
Madhye khyama chakitahariniprekhyana nimnanabhi:
Shronibharadalasagamana stokanamra stanabhyam
Ya tatra syadubatibipaye srustiradyeba dhatu: (2)
Aloke te nipatati pura sa balibyakula ba
Matsyadrusyam virahatanu ba bhavagamyam likhanti
Pruchanti ba madhurabachanam sarikaam panjarasyam
Kachidbhartu: smarasi rasike twam hi tasya priyeti(3)
Utsange ba malinabasane somya nikhipta veena
Madrotranka birachitapadam geyamudratukama
Tanwimadra nayanasalileye: sarayetwa kathancheet
Drayo bhuya: swamapi kruta murchanam bismaranti(4)
Shyamaswanga chakitahariniprekhyane drustipatam
Baktrachaya sasine shikhinam bahirbharesu kesan
Utpashami pratanusu nadibichisu bhrubilasa
Hantekasminkachidapi na te chandi sadrushyamasti(5)

In the first sholaka the poet describe that how the lover of yakhaya is decorating herself with different flowers and in the second sholaka there is the description of her beauty. Her body is compare with branches of the tree and her eyes with the eyes of dear. Yakhaya was narrating to the cloud that without him how she was felling. In the condition of separation i.e. viraha she may be asking to the parrot that whether my lover is remembering or not. She may be playing Veena whose string is wet with her tear. Her hair is compared with the peacock's feather. So all these description are establishing viraha vinod. Sringar rasa can very well communicated to the audience with condition of separation i.e. Viraha than the condition of union. The eager to meet his priya has compel Yakhaya to compare the nature with her beauty and also send the message to her through the cloud. So onstage we can establish sringar rasa with the help of anubhavas and sancharibhavas in odissi dance form.

(3) Bhartuhari's Sringar Satak:

Smitena bhabena cha lajjaya bhiya
Bachobhirisyarkalahen lilaya
Samastabhabeye: khalu bandhanam striya: (1)
Bhruchaturyatkuchhitakhya: katakhya:
Snigdha bacho lajjaitantaswa hasa:
Leelamandam prasthitam cha sthitam cha
Strinametabhusanam chayudham cha (2)
Kimkandarpa saram kadarthayasi re kodandatankaritam
Re re kokila komalam kalaraba kim ba brutha jalpasi
Mugdhe snigdhabidagdhacharumadhureyelolete: katakhyaralam
Chetashumbitachandrachudacharanadhyanamrutam bartate(3)
Kim gaten yadi sa na Jivati
Praneti priyatama tathapi kim
Ityadikhya nabameghamalikam
Na pryati pathika: swamandiram(4)

From bhartuhari's sringar satak I have taken the stanza where there is the description of the features of a woman which she uses as her weapon as well as her ornament to attract her male counter part. In the next stanza there is description of vairagya where the poet describes about Madan, Kokila and with this sancharibhavas establishes sringar rasa. In the last stanza the man who is living alone in a distant place without his wife does not return home thinking that is she really loves him, she cannot live without him. In the other way if she lives, then she cannot be his true lover. So this is vairagya, the ultimate realization of sringar rasa. So we can also show this through the abhinaya in odissi dance.

(4) Kalidas's Malvika Agnimitra:

Dirghakhyam saradindukanti badanam bahu natabasayo:
Sankhiptam nibidonnatastanasura: parswe pramruste iba
Madhya: Panimitonmitam cha jaghanam padorbarilanguli
Chhando nartituryatheiba manasi slistam tathasya: bapu (1)
Durlabha: priyo me tasmin bhaba hrudaya nirasam
Aho apangako me prasphurati kimapi bamaka:
Esa sa chiradrusta: kathamupanetabyo
Natha mam paradhinam twai ganaya Satrusnam.(2)

In this I have taken some shlokas from Kalidas's drama Malvika Agnimitra. Here Agnimitra was the king and Malvika was just a dancer but the King show his love towards her and between their love king's to queens Dharini and Iravati stood as obstruction. This is how story goes. Here is the description of 'Ayog Bipralambha Sringar'. For makvika who is a mere dancer it is just impossible to get the love of king. Here I have taken First shlokas where there is description of beauty of malvika and in second Shlokas Malvika singing the song and dancing in the king's darbar showing her love towards the king and also mentioning that it is impossible to get the love of king using the word ' Durlabha Priya '.


In this 21st century at the advent of globalization the whole world is becoming one crossing all the national barrier. So to know each other's culture is very much essential at this age. Dance is a very powerful media through which one can express the cultural heritage of the country and here I have chosen the sringar rasa which means pure love as my mode of expression. Since love is immortal and the inner need of human being we can see its presence in any literature like Greek, Egypt, Rome and all around the world. In my view it is an event to establish Odissi Dance as an International Dance form so that we can universalized this dance form through the concept of Sringar rasa by choreographing the literature of different cultures. So in this process we all can bound in this one platform of dance and feel united.

Yamini Krishnamuthy
Zubin Mehta
U Shrinivas
Sudha Raghunathan
GS Srikrishnan
T.M. Krishna
Madhup Mudgal
Dhruba Ghosh
Sonal Mansingh
Alarmel Valli
Madhavi Mudgal
Bombay Jayashri
Saroja Vaidyanathan
Malavika Sarukkai
Ranjana Gauhar
Shovana Narayan
Ganesh - Kumaresh
Tripti Mukherjee
Sarathi Chatterjee
Kamala Shankar
Priyadarshini Govind
Rama Vaidyanathan
Bijoyini Satpathy
Neena Prasad
Shanta Rati Misra
Kalapini Komkali
Rekha Tandon
GS Rajan
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