Sufi Splendor - Music for whirling meditation
Copyright 2001 all rights reserved
Manish Vyas (Santoor, keyboards, percussion); Shekhar Borkar (sarod); Vikram Singh (flute); Ojas (djembe), Dina Awwad (vocals).
Recorded in India’s Ishvani Kendra monastery, Sufi Splendor: music for whirling meditation, features seasoned musicians, masters of the Sema’ a sufi ceremony, performing this irresistible music that propelled the original Sufi trance dancers.
The dervish’s whirling is a meditation—communion and contemplation—set to music and chant; the calm center of a spiritual cyclone. Sufi Splendor: Music for Whirling Meditation captures the music that drives this resplendent and timeless practice.
Serpentine ney (flute), melodic santoor, impassioned singing and ancient frame drum form a hypnotic rhythmic engine, building in intensity and carrying the listener to whirling ecstasy. Recorded in India’s Ishvani Kendra monastery, Sufi Splendor: Music for Whirling Meditation features seasoned musicians, masters of the sema’a (Sufi ceremony), performing this irresistible music that propelled the original trance dancers.
The Persian mystic poet Rumi, founder of the Mevlana Dervish brotherhood, wrote, “…Music uplifts the soul to realms above. The ashes glow, the latent fires increase. We listen and are fed with joy and peace.”
Immensely enjoyable for straight listening, truly indispensable for inner exploration, Sufi Splendor: Music for Whirling Meditation places the listener at the tranquil heart of that latent fire.
'Middle Eastern Magic' This is an excellent CD for those of you who are interested in Mystical music. The musicians are very good and if you shut your eyes you can almost smell the desert and feel the hot dusty air. It is particularly good to play at the end of a hard working day and just "BE" - get lost in the wonderful rhythmns and hypnotic chants of this great CD. -- K2 Wales, UK
I have recently purchased through i-tunes the album 'Sufi Splendor.' Thank you for the inspiring music. i use it often while drawing and find it highly meditative and sweeping. -- Rami, NY, USA
Sufi Splendor invokes the heart and spirit of the persian whiling dervish dancing between the material and cosmic realms. Driven by the insatiable rhythm of frame drums, djembe, tabla and other world percussion these tracks allow you to experience the connection between movement, spirit and sound.
A seductive swirl of flute, stringed instruments and haunting vocals are effortlessly woven together enhancing the hypnotic eastern vibe. -- Yogabasics.com
A hypnotic musical prayer
This hypnotic musical prayer, played on Sarod, Santoor, Bamboo flute and Frame drum, was recorded live in a monastery in India. Acclaimed composer, Santoor player and percussionist Manish Vyas takes the lead here. Subtitled "Music for Whirling Meditation," this is trancy music that works well as accompaniment for Yoga practices, movement, and other of the healing arts. Vocals by Dina Awwad give the listener a chance to experience the intoxicating sounds of this devotional practice. Her passion builds as the chants gain momentum, joined by Vyas' Santoor, Percussion, Shekhar’s Sarod, Bikram’s flute and Ojas’s percussions.
- Backroads Music
The melodies are haunting and lovely
Like most religions that include a highly detailed and demanding ritual component, Islam has a mystical offshoot, the practitioners of which concern themselves more with achieving an ecstatic union with God than with the close observation of legalistic ritual. One subset of the Sufi sect, known as the Whirling Dervishes, achieves that state of mystical ecstasy by means of a spinning dance, followed by a period of prostrate contemplation. Multi-instrumentalist and composer Manish Vyas is joined by a small ensemble of Indian musicians on Sufi Splendor: Music for Whirling Meditation, a program of music inspired by the practice of these ancient mystics; each of the three tracks is a song based on one of the Sufi mantras, all of them simply and beautifully sung by Dina Awwad. The primary instruments are the santoor (a kind of hammered dulcimer), sarod, flute, and an African drum called a djembe. The melodies are haunting and lovely, and even the half-hour-long ones contain enough variation and complexity to make them seem to slip by quickly. Recommended.
- AllMusic Review by Rick Anderson