Tuesday, December 22, 2009

The Shruti Box

What the heck is a Shruti Box? Well, it is an instrument that is sort of like a small version of the Harmonium. It creates a droning sound to which chant and sacred toning are easily applies. The word "shruti" is a Sanskrit word that, loosely translated, means "sacred sound". The Universe itself was created from sacred sound. Humans have known this for thousands of years. The Shruti Box, which functions somewhat like an accordion, creates combinations of tones that simulate that sacred sound.

The possibilities are endless! I love to just sit and play the Shruti Box, or chant to the droning sounds of it. I find that it lifts my spirits and takes me places on shamanic journeys that other sounds just are unable to accomplish.

I first encountered one of these delightful instruments at a sound workshop I attended that was put on by Pam Gerand. This incredible woman with an amazing voice brought out this instrument close to the end of the workshop and played it while we chanted Sanskrit mantras. It was incredible. Afterward, I asked her where I could get one and she directed me to the store in Toronto. I ordered it, had it delivered to my brother-in-law's house in Toronto, and my in-laws flew it back with them after visiting Toronto that same week to visit their grandchildren and (Poof!) there was my Shruti Box! I just love it when a plan comes together.

Blessed Be

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Vanitha said...

Drums, Gongs, Shruti Box, Spoons, chant - you are quite the "Music Man!"

Hasarina said...

Greetings, Trent. May I ask you where in Toronto did you get the shruti box from and what was the price? I've been looking for one in quite awhile. Do you need a "lesson" to play it like the harmonium? Thanks for your response and I hope that I could find my way back here. Be blessed~

Trent Deerhorn said...

I got my Shruti Box from the House of Raga in Toronto. Their phone number is (416) 499.6122. It is an incredibly easy instrument to play. Just remember that it creates a drone, not a melody. So in a way, it sounds like the chords on an accordian. But the combinations of chords can be quite delightful.