. Gurbani Raag Maru, Maroo :SearchGurbani.com
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Gurbani Raag Maru


Maru is an old raga seldom heard in concerts today. Some theorists equate it with Maruva or 'Marva. In the Ragmala, Maru is a putra (son) of Malkaunsa. It is found in other classifications from the 14th to the early 19th century. Maru was used by Guru Nanak, Guru Amar Das, Guru Ram Das, Guru Arjan and Guru Tegh Bahadur for 144 hymns, two vars plus a large number of slokas. One of its variations is Maru Kafi. Maru is assigned to the hours of sunset and is considered suitable for the cold season. The mood is quiet and contemplative. The tonal material given here is for Maru Bihag, Bilaval thata.
This raga is associated with warriors and is used to inspire people to acts of heroism. Guru Amardas calls that person a warrior who fights against his mind and its evil inclinations:
“Valiant and the most distinguished are the persons who grapple with their minds.
They who recognise their won self ever remain united with their God”[14]
Kabir gives a similar connotations of the spiritual hero--Soora:
He alone is known to be a warrior who fights for the sake of his religion,
He dies, cut piece by piece, but never deserts the battle field”

Aroh : Sa Ga Ma Pa, Dha Ni Sa

Avroh : Sa Ni Dha Pa, M'a Pa Dha Ni Dha Pa Ma Ga Re Sa

Pakar : Pa Dha Ni Dha Pa Ma Pa ~Ma Ga, Pa Dha Pa Ga Re, Ga Re Sa

Vadi: Pa

Samvadi : Ni

Introduction :

According to Indian Schools of music this raga is a very old and popular raga. It is also known as raga Malav, Marva,and Marvic. It belongs to Marva thaht. It is classified as a son of raga Malkaus.

This raga is also mentioned as a son of raga Malkausak in the Ragamala listed at the end of Guru Granth Sahib. According to Late Ustad Ameer Khan this raga gives a feeling of separation and gloomy mood. It makes one sad after listening to this raga.

The scale and notes of the raga are as follows:

Arohi (ascending scale) - sa magama pa dha ni sa

Avrohi (descending scale) - sa ni dha pa ma dha pa ma pa ga sa

The vadi (most popular) note is 'ga' and samvadi (second most popular) note is sa'.

This raga is sung at the third part of the day i.e., from 12 noon to 3 p.m. The season of its recitation is winter (shisher) i.e., during December, January. In Guru Granth Sahib it has hymns from pages 989- 1106 (118 pages).

The Composers:

The composers of bani (hymns) in this raga are:

Gurus

  • Guru Nanak Dev
  • Guru Angad Dev
  • Guru Amardas
  • Ramdas
  • Guru Arjan Dev
  • Guru Tegh Bahadur

Bhagats:

  • Kabir
  • Namdev
  • Jaidev
  • Ravidas

The structure:

The sequence of the structure of compositions in this raga are:

Gurubani:

  • Shabads (2-6padas)
  • Ashtpadis
  • Sohle
  • Specialist compositions
  • Vars

Bhagatbani:

  • Shabads (2-4 padas)
  • Ashtpadi
  • Sloak

Matrix

VISUAL ANALYSIS

Count of the use of Managals:

  • Complete Mool Mantar = 1 at page 989
  • Ik-ongkar Satgur Prasadh = 36

Placement and count of rahau verses:

All shabads of the Gurus have rahau verses, with numerals, placed at the end of the first padas of the shabads, except shabads of Guru Tegh Bhadur, where the rahau verses are placed in the beginning of the shabads.

In the specialist composition 'Anajali' there is no rahau verse in it. In all the Ashtpadis the numbered rahau verses are placed at the end of the first pada. In one Ashtpadi (page 1018), there is no rahau verse in it.

Diversification of headings & subheadings in this raga:

Page number

Heading/Subheading

989

Raga Maru Mehla 1 Ghar 1 chaupads

1008

Maru Ashtpadia Mehla 1 Ghar 1

1014

Maru Kafi Mehla 1 Ghar 2

1016

Maru Mehla 3 Ghar 5 Ashtpadi

Composers Structure of Bani

 

Padas

 

 

 

 

Ashtpadis

Specialist

 

Chts

Specialist

Var

Sloaks*

Gurus

2

3

4

5

6

8 (padas)

untiled

Titled

 

 

 

 

Nanak Del,

 

1

7

3

1

11

22

 

 

 

 

22 in

Var M3

Angad De%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1 in

Var M3

Amardas

 

 

4

1

 

1

24

 

 

 

Pauri

22

23

Ramdas

 

 

6

2

 

 

2

 

 

 

 

3 in

Var M3

Arjan Dev

9

 

19

2

 

Anjlian

= 2

1st=

4 pds

2nd=

5 pds

6

 

14

 

Pauri

23

3 in

Var M3

Tegh

Bahadur

3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2 in

Var M3

69 in

Var M5

Bhagats

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kabir

3

3

5

 

 

 

1

 

 

 

 

1

Namdev

 

 

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jaidev

 

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ravidas

1

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The sequence of Gurubani is as follows:

Shabads (2-6) padas, Titled 'Anjlian' two shabads M:5 (1st =4 pada, 2nd=5 padas), shabad M: 9 Ashtpadis, Titled 'Anjlian' two Ashtpadis M:5, Sohle, Vars.

The sequence of Bhagatbani is as follows:

Bhagat Kabir - 7 shabads (4=4padas, 2=2padas, 1=3 padas), Ashtpadi -1 (but without the title of ashtpadi), 1 shabad (2 padas), 2 sloaks,

Bhagat Namdev - 1 shabad (4 padas) Bhagat Kabir - 1 shabad (4 padas) Bhagat Jaidev - 1 shabad (2 padas) Bhagat Kabir - 1 shabad (3 padas)

Bhagat Ravidas - 2 shabads (1=2 padas, 1=3 padas)

Excerpts taken from:
Guru Granth Sahib: An Advance Study
Dr Sukhbir Singh Kapoor
Vice Chancellor World Sikh University, London