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Raudra Rasa – Evocation Of Anger Or Fury In Art And Literature

Raudra Rasa is the evocation of anger or fury in art and literature. Rasa, which may be interpreted as emotional flavor or sentiment, is the primary and most important requirement of art and literature. The term has been used most often in the context of the performing arts – theater, dance and music. The artiste must seek to arouse this emotion in the spectators, so that his and their emotions may fuse and become attuned to the spirit of the drama.

The main difference between the rasa and bhava (feeling) is that, while the former depends purely on imaginative transfiguration, the latter is earthier, for it is concerned with creating a mood through physical media. Rasas express the beginning of a sentiment, whole bhavas complete or round it off either through the agency of mana, the brain or sharira, the body or through an action such as the throwing of a stone. Every rasa has its accompanying bhava. The bhava transmutes itself into rasa if the viewer is receptive and capable of receiving. Rasa is said to be tasted.

There are nine rasas, with an equal number of complementary moods. In this respect then, the quality of rasa belongs to the work of art. It is essential totality of the aesthetic qualities in a work of art, like a painting or song or a play being acted on the stage. This is the objective aspect of rasa.

In a drama, the dramatist uses metaphor, paradox, hyperbole and other figures of speech, but it is also the actor and cast who bring to life the events, the adventure, the thrill and emotional states of the characters in the drama. What may be said about poetry is also true of the lyric or a song. Emotions are evoked not directly but through the imagery of words. The emotions are evoked by the way a poet uses the words and the way he arranges them. The words evoke sensuous images and stimulate emotions. When the writer, poet, or playwright does this with outstanding success, then he has fulfilled the criterion of rasa.

Works of art are therefore judged by the degree of evocation of the rasa, both objectively and subjectively. Objectively interpreted, it refers to the essential totality of the poem, novel, painting, or performance on a stage. Subjectively, it refers to the viewer’s aesthetic experience. The Myanmar theory of rasa emphasizes the latter.

The color of Raudra or furious rasa is red.