Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Banaras- The Bana(Prepared) Ras(Juice)

Ustad Bismillah passed away two months ago. Though this is an ill timed obituary, I do not feel ashamed to remember him when I feel the same for his beloved and chosen place of residence. he was born in Dumraon, Bihar, near Buxar(famous for the Battle of Buxar). He had moved to Banaras as a young boy, who imbibed the teachings of music from his maternal uncle , at the doorsteps of Kashi Vishvanath Temple. He did not only learn music but the essence of it, which transcends religions, boundaries and communes. When he played, he played for the million Hindu gods and goddesses and for Allah and for Jesus and the gods to be discovered in the lap of time futuristic. He played his Shehnai and made it an instrument of solidarity with the humanity. Ustad saab showed to the world that to live a peaceful life one dos not need an intellect or an elite education , but a simple heart which feels the joys and pains of fellow human beings. His greatness was in his generous simplicity. I had the privilege to listen to him twice , where he accentuated the meaning of Banaras, that is prepared juice of life, for which one dos not need to hunt , when living in Banaras. How true he was?
Let the elixir of life called Banaras intoxicate me.....

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