Aspects of Abhinaya


Aspects of Abhinaya

The expressions which are shown to express poetic meanings is Abinaya. Here the emphasis is more on facial expressions than rhythmic movements. The Abinaya is divided as

  • Angikabhinaya
  • Vachikabhinaya
  • Aharyabhinaya
  • Satvikabhinaya

Angikabhinaya : Expressing the meanings of lyrics using the body parts like Head, Hands, Legs etc. is Angikabhinaya. The Bhedas which i have explained above come under Angikabhinaya.

Vachikabhinaya : Expressing the Story using narrations in the dance drama is Vachikabhinaya.

Aharyabhinaya : Imitating the Costumes, Jewellary, Make-up etc. in a dance comes under Aharyabhinaya.

Satvikabhinaya : Showing the Bhava(moods) come under Satvikabhinaya.

Lord Shiva is praised as the embodiment of the above 4 types of abinaya in this following shloka.

Angikam bhuvanam yasya

Vachicam sarva vangmayam

Aharyam chandra taradi

tam vande satvikam shivam.

Meaning for the above shloka is

We bow to Him the benevolent One

Whose limbs are the world,

Whose song and poetry are the essence of all language,

Whose costume is the moon and the stars…”

In Lord Shiva’s well-known pose of NATARAJA ,

his right hand holds the drum of creation – symbolizing a new awakening

his left hand holds fire – representing destruction of the old order

his other right hand is raised in blessing

the other left hand points to his left foot, which has crushed demon Muyalaka – representing ignorance.

There are nine main or primary emotions, Sthayibhava s. It is also termed as Rasa (Mood).

  • Shringara – Love
  • Hasya – Mirth
  • Veera – Heroism
  • Roudra – Anger
  • Bhayanaka – Terror
  • Bheebatsa – Disgust
  • Adbhuta – Wonder
  • Karuna – Compassion
  • Shanta – Tranquility

Vatsalya(Parental fondling) rasa is also sometimes included as one of the stayibhava.

Vibhava (cause of emotion), Anubhava (effect of emotion) and Sanchari bhava (subordinate emotions) constitute the state of rasa.

Now i would like to talk about Nayika (the Heroine) and Nayaka (the Hero) bhavas.


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