May 22, 2022

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Meditation, songs and sexual harassment

Meditation, songs and sexual harassment

  • The documentary film depicting the love story between the band from Liverpool and the unlimited country of the Ganges arrives in cinemas

In a very long list of unknown people who You changed the history of the world With the seemingly inconsequential action figure Raymond Sim. As Technical Director of ‘help!’ (1965), the second film starring the BeatlesSimm can be credited with the decision to place a group of Indian musicians in the background of the shot to add quirkiness to the scene at Rajahama Restaurant. One of the additions played the sitarIt is an ancient instrument of the Hindustani musical tradition that aroused curiosity on that day Boring George HarrisonAnd this accidental discovery ended not only the path of the Beatles as artists and individuals, but also the culture of the West in the second half of the twentieth century. The documentary “The Beatles and India”, which will be shown for the first time on Friday in Spanish cinemas Having passed through Valladolid Seminci and For the In-Edit FestivalIt tells the love story between a global group and an unfathomable country.

It is interesting to note how that Enormous influence exerted by the Beatles all over the world Over time, it helped dismantle negative prejudices that existed about India, a stereotypical view espoused by the movie “Help!” Himself, with his followers carrying out a bloody worship of Goddess Kali, without any worries. “If you look at it from a perspective, Obviously today “Help!” It would be considered offensive and racist -points ajoy boss, co-director of “The Beatles and India” and author of the book on which the documentary is based. But the fact is that at that time it did not arouse any controversy, perhaps because in India no one knew of its existence.

The Beatles in Bollywood

This does not mean that the Asian country was oblivious to the “Beatlemania” wave that rocked the world in the mid-1960s. Ajoy Bose is the voice authorized to speak of her, because at the time he was a teenager who belonged to the English elite from Calcutta. And as such, he adored the fab. “The Beatles originally had a great influence on the young people who were around the English schools, which were a very small percentage of India, but Within a few years, he made his mark on Bollywood And there they reached the majority of the audience & rdquor; As a fun sample button, the documentary includes some photos of Brilliant Indian film star Shami Kapoor He wears a round neck “Beetle” suit and a “mop” wig singing a version of “I want to hold your hand” in Hindi.

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Meanwhile, in England, Harrison’s curiosity about the sitar turned into a genuine interest, a tendency that, perhaps, had its origin in prenatal memory: apparently, During her pregnancy, George’s mother listened to Indian music on the radio Because it helped him relax. “It’s really cool,” says the film’s other co-director, Peter Compton-. George’s mother’s sister made it clear and there’s no reason not to believe her, because during World War II the BBC had a Sunday morning program in which half an hour of contemporary Indian music was broadcast ”

Ravi Shankar appears

Anyway, the sitar path led Harrison to Intersection with the honorable Pandit Ravi Shankar And there the fascination was already absolute. The first meeting of musicians was held in June 1966 at a dinner organized by the Institute of Asian Music Circle in London, Ayana Deva Angadi, and from the very first moment A connection has been established between the two that is difficult to explain. He also attended the evening Paul McCartney, who quickly lost interest. “Paul remained on the sidelines,” Shankara Angadi, the host’s son, says in the documentary. He looked bored and smoked like a rickshaw driver. My little sister carried cigarette butts and took them to school the next day.”

In September of the same year, Harrison traveled to Bombay with his wife Patti (first name Boyd) to take sitar lessons with Ravi Shankar. That stay of almost six weeks in India completely changed his life. “When I interviewed Patti Boyd for the film,” explains Ajoy Bose, “I remembered the flight in 1966 much better than the time they spent in Rishikesh with Maharishi in 1968, which was talked about a lot. It was that first flight that introduced George Truly not only for Indian music but also for the country’s culture and spirituality”.

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hippie mecca

Harrison’s Indian outbreak has begun Dive into the Beatles in the form of songs (“I love you to”, “within you without you”, “inner light” & mldr;) This helped direct the gaze of Western youth toward the Ganges, which has become something of a spiritual mecca for hippie culture. The meeting of the four from Liverpool with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the founding teacher of the Transcendental Meditation movement, was the friction that ended up detonating the powerful shock wave phenomenon.

The instigator of all this was, of course, George, whom his wife had told him, He convinced his three bandmates to attend a spiritual renewal course which Maharishi performed in the Welsh city of Bangor for 10 days at the end of August 1967. The experiment was interrupted only three days later, when the Beatles received news of Actor Brian Epstein diesdue to an accidental overdose of sleeping pills.

Epstein’s disappearance deprived the four musicians not only of a skilled businessman but also of a paternal figure, the guardian angel who has led their footsteps since 1962. “The Beatles and India” defends the thesis that meticulously defends It was this absence that ended up pushing John, Paul, George and Ringo into Maharishi’s armswhich they adopted to be their spiritual master. With his sharp commercial nose, the teacher with a steady smile did not hesitate to use the name of his new disciples to announce himself and expand his privilege in the West.

To Rishikesh!

The central episode of all this saga was, of course, the stay of the four “Beatles”, accompanied by their associates, at Maharishi’s ashram (or meditation center) in Rishikesh, in the foothills of the Himalayas, Separated and documented by the film Bose and Compton brilliantlyLots of testimonials and unpublished photos.

The experience served the Fab Four to temporarily evade the fame fee and financial problems that plagued London and It also contributed to enhancing the personality of each of the musicianswho began to consider themselves independent individuals outside the group. Ringo Starr, who came with a bag full of Heinz cereal boxes To avoid the harshness of Indian food, it only lasted 10 days. Paul McCartney, who didn’t seem to take the topic of meditation seriously and took advantage of his downtime to write songs (many of which ended up on “The White Album”), lasted four weeks.

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She was the most stable John Lennon and George Harrison. But the patience of the first, who had hoped to find in Rishikesh a light that had not yet arrived, ran out after two months, only when Rumors started circulating that Maharishi was addressing some of his young studentsincluding actress Mia Farrow. Lennon not only decided to go home (George reluctantly followed him), but suddenly cut all ties with the teacher, typical of him, He dedicated to him a caustic song called “Maharishi”, which was later Her name was changed to “Sexual Sadistic”. The accusations of sexual harassment have not been confirmed.

Beginning of the End

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The Rishikesh affair had a bitter end, but it left a deep imprint on the Beatles. There are those who affirm this, not without foundation This spiritual campaign is the root of the group’s disintegration, which finally became two years later. Ajoy Bose gives a more accurate explanation: “There are two ways of looking at it. One of them is that Rishikesh gave them tools to see themselves as individuals, to develop their own identity, and this distanced them from the group. But at the same time it can be said that They might have split up earlier if Maharishi hadn’t shown upbecause he was the one who gave them a common purpose and a sense of loneliness when Brian Epstein’s death left them shattered.

For his part, Harrison had a slightly different view of things. Years later he wrote in his autobiographical book: “If everyone had known what we lived in Rishikesh, they would have spent more time in meditation and would not have fallen into so many distractions.” Meditation could have helped us deal with the situation. […] Instead, we went crazy “.