Spice of Life| Mood & Melody: Of songs that capture human emotions - Hindustan Times
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Spice of Life| Mood & Melody: Of songs that capture human emotions

ByDr Gulbahar S Sidhu
Nov 20, 2023 05:10 AM IST

There are songs which bring you a glimmer of hope during a dark night of despair. Point in case: ‘Kahan tak yeh mann ko andhere challenge, Udaasi bhare din kahin to dhalenge, Kabhi sukh, kabhi dukh yehi zindagi hai, Yeh patjhad ka mausam ghadi do ghadi hai, Naye phool kal phir dagar mein khilenge, Udaasi bhare din kahin to dhalenge’, from the movie Baton Baton Mein (1979)

Life is a kaleidoscope of emotions. But this kaleidoscope is different in one crucial way. The dominant hue of emotions changes with every passing moment. Shades of grey rule the mindscape when despair sets in, only to give way to a splash of colours when happiness takes over.

While I do use my knowledge and training to help these troubled souls, sometimes it’s a different tool that comes in handy – Hindi songs. Songs sometimes capture the emotions of a patient better than anything else. (Getty Images/iStockphoto)
While I do use my knowledge and training to help these troubled souls, sometimes it’s a different tool that comes in handy – Hindi songs. Songs sometimes capture the emotions of a patient better than anything else. (Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Over the years, I have realised that this change in colours does not happen instantly. It takes its own sweet time. But the problem starts when we tend to think that this change may not happen at all.

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Being a mental health professional, I have come across many people caught in this conundrum, some with no hope of getting over it.

While I do use my knowledge and training to help these troubled souls, sometimes it’s a different tool that comes in handy – Hindi songs. Songs sometimes capture the emotions of a patient better than anything else.

For instance, the verse ‘kabhi yun hi jab hui bojhal sansen, bhar aayee baithe baithe jab yun hi aankhen’ (Anand, 1971), loosely translated as ‘when you experience shortness of breath and your eyes turn moist, beautifully captures the darkest hour of despair.

And then there are other songs which bring you a glimmer of hope during a dark night of despair. Point in case: ‘Kahan tak yeh mann ko andhere challenge, Udaasi bhare din kahin to dhalenge, Kabhi sukh, kabhi dukh yehi zindagi hai, Yeh patjhad ka mausam ghadi do ghadi hai, Naye phool kal phir dagar mein khilenge, Udaasi bhare din kahin to dhalenge’, from the movie Baton Baton Mein (1979). The song speaks about how happiness and sadness are a part of life, and if winter’s here, spring can’t be far behind. The song gives out the message to never give up hope and stay optimistic.

A more optimistic picture is painted by ‘Na muh chhupa ke jio, na sur jhuka ke jio, gamon ka daur bhi aaye to muskura ke jio’ (Humraaz, 1967), which tells one to have one’s head held high and live with a smile. This is one song that I so often ask my patients to listen to lift their mood.

Each one of us finds ourselves at crossroads at some point in life, not able to decide which way is the best way forward. Fortunately, there are songs that answer to our predicament in their own inimitable style. I, for one, have found the song ‘Aane wala pal jaane wala hai, ho sake toh iss mein zindagi bita do, pal jo ye jaane wala hai’ (Golmaal, 1979), which tells you to live in the moment and enjoy life as it comes. Or the recent one, ‘Apna har din aise jio, jaise ke aakhiri ho’ (Gomaal 3, 2010), which tells you to live every day as if it were your last. This is precisely the message that I convey to all my patients who worry about their future, forgetting their present.

What better way to live than ‘Uthe sab ke kadam, ta ra rum pumpum, aji aise geet gaya karo, kabhi khushi kabhi gam, hanso aur hansaaya karo’ (Baton Baton Mein)’ which is perhaps the best mantra for good health, ‘Sing your way to a good mood’. Albeit, after consulting your psychiatrist!

The writer is a Jalandhar-based consulting psychiatrist and can be reached at gulbaharsidhu@rediffmail.com

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