Indian music has its essence in a deep sense of spirituality along with roots in Yoga and Indian philosophy. The theme of the compositions is mostly devotional in nature, and many of them convey abstruse philosophical concepts in a form that is easy to grasp. Music when practiced with commitment is a form of Yoga. Music has a tremendous effect on the mental state of human beings as it results in peace, concentration, relaxation, spiritual elevation etc, which are the principles of Yoga and meditation. The practice of Yoga techniques, such as breath control and mental concentration are closely allied to the study of instrument vocal music.
According to Hindu philosophy the word for pure sound is Nada Brahma. Nada has also been described by some as the energy of Brahma and it is believed that the propitiation of Nada leads to the attainment of Moksha (salvation), which is the ultimate goal of human life. Matanga has described Nada in his Brihaddesi thus:
”There is no song or music without Nada, there are no musical notes without Nada, there is no dance without Nada and the world is filled with the essence of Nada”.
The word Nada refers to the physical, the mystic and the religious or the cosmic sound. The sound that is produced by musical instruments is an object of sensory perception as it is grasped by the sense of hearing. This is called Ahata Nada. In this context, the human voice is also a musical instrument. As described in the composition Sobhillu Saptaswara the entire body, including the abdomen (Nabhi), heart (Hruth), neck (Kantha), mouth (Rasana) and nasal passages (Nasa) aids in the production of the sound.
Saraswathi Veena is considered as a replica of the Spinal cord. It is one of the oldest divine instruments and is described in the Vedas and in all the ancient classical music treatise.