Sky sky, up so tall
How many seasons are there in all?
In India, we all grew up learning that the season cycle is a four-quadrant, mainly these:
- Summer, Autumn, Winter, Spring
In another time, my aunt, who is a teacher in Canada, remarked to me that although most of the western world does correspond to this cycle, India does not. That got me thinking and i knew that this cycle carried its fallacy when seen in the context, for one undeniable reason - it didn’t cater for our beloved, our muse, our Monsoons!
So i did a quick research on google, the electronic as well as the other one and here’s the crux.
The Hindu calendar is what captures the seasonal moods of the Indian sub-continent in a pertinent way. Each season is called ‘Ritu’ (for those who know Hindi, it’s spelt with the Rishi wala ऋ) which means an appointed time or course of things. Each year’s song is composed of six melodies of Ritus:
1. Vasant (spring) - March 20 to May 20
2. Greeshma (summer) - May 20 to Jul 20
3. Varsha (monsoon) - Jul 20 to Sep 20
4. Sharad (autumn) - Sep 20 to Nov 20
5. Hemant (pre-winter) - Nov 20 to Jan 20
6. Shishir (winter) - Jan 20 to Mar 20
I hope that we in India start teaching this cycle too, alongside the world-dominant four-pronged one too. This one carries the true colours and changes we see in our daily lives, each year and it only makes sense to be able to recognize each melody correctly - only then can we appreciate the song.