Sound Merges in Light!

What if I say that “Sound is a subset of light”. Scientifically you may agree that both are electromagnetic vibrations at different frequencies in the spectrum though one may not be the subset of another. So, What if I say that every other frequency is the subset of light? I am sure many may disagree. Some of the religious pundits may claim that “Sound is god” which I am not disputing but “light too is god” and as we progress towards the primordial state sound merges into light.

Let me try to explain this with a simple exercise. Imagine that I am talking to you and avoid thinking that you are reading this blog. I am going to TELL the following 5 words and you are going to LISTEN to it. Please just observe what happens within you. CAT, BOAT, MOM, DEVIL, BEST FRIEND.

The following are the fundamentals of perception as per ancient scriptures:

  • Every word has a meaning (Let us ignore the so-called meaningless words for the time being.).
  • Every meaning invokes a form or shape within our mind.

For example when I say “MOM” you associate this word with your mother and the picture / image of your mother is perceived inside. You need to be little more observant to understand this. The fundamental principle is that “Every word is first associated its meaning then the meaning is associated with a form. The form is associated with a Guna (Quality) and then the quality or Guna is associated with its experience. What is stored inside is just the experience. In other words, Consciousness / existence exist in 3 states (deeper explanation is 5 / 7 states but we will discuss the simpler alternative).

  1. Formless state called Experience / feeling / bhava. This is the super conscious state.
  2. Gross state with Form which has physical attributes. This is the conscious state.
  3. In‐between state (Semi-form) called Guna state which has subtle quality attributes. This is the Subconscious state. If this is difficult to comprehend for you please imagine “Egg” which is in‐between the formless and state with form. Gotcha?

Let’s look at an example. Rose is a flower. When someone tells you “ROSE” then the following happens:

  1. The sound “rose’ associates with a flower usually. 
  2. So here the word is associated with its meaning.
  3. This flower is associated with red color and perhaps with thorns. Here the sound does not exist anymore but only a form. Yo!, the sound has merged into light.
  4. The next step is this form is associated with a quality which is fragrance of a rose. For someone sensitive they can smell the rose when they think about it. How else could we salivate the thought / smell of a favorite dish if this step does not exist?
  5. Now the last step is, this quality invokes an experience and hence a feeling. This rose may be associated with your inner self for love and hence the emotion of love surfaces. This is called Bhava / Rasa in Sanskrit.

A little contemplation would help you understand this 5 stage process of perception.

Application in Classical Dance

Our ancient forefathers knew this science and interconnection. Let me now quote these as an example from Bharatnatyam (classical Indian dance), which talks about this linkage.

‘Kanteenaalambayet geetam, Hasteenaardham Pradarsayet,Chakshurbhyaam darsayeet bhaavam, Paadaabhyam taalamaacharet.’ – According to Nandikeshara the dancer should sing with the mouth, express the meaning of the song with hand gestures, her eyes should express the emotions or bhava, the tala, the beat or rhythm should be done with her feet.

Further he goes on to say ‘Yato hastas tato drushti, Yato drushitis tato manaha, Yato manahas tato bhavo, Yato bhavas tato Rasaha‘ – Where the hand goes, there should follow the eyes, Where the eyes move, mind should follow it, Where the mind follow, Bhava or emotion is created, & lastly when Bhava is created the sentiment or Rasa will arise. All the Mudras or gestures represent word when held at a particular position around the frame of the body and when used in a particular way.


Time = Space by Raguram Gopalan,