Theatre or drama is an ancient art. Dramatic form of aesthetic experience is one of the most perfect fruition of aesthetic activities because drama is the synthesis of all arts. Drama can be defined as the representation of certain situations so as to induce in the spectators a sense of identification with the hero and other characters, by the way actors render them. Composing a drama is an art of presenting a story in the form of dialogue. Bharat’s Natya Shastra contains a detailed theory of drama. Any work of art is read or viewed with the motive of experiencing aesthetic pleasure. Bharat Muni in Natya Shastra describes this experience of aesthetic pleasure as ” Rasa”. Adbhuta Rasa is one such marvellous sentiment in Drama.
.Etymologically, rasa means flavor, taste, juice, sap or essence. Rasa is the simplest as well as the most complicated word, so far its meaning is concerned. It is very easy to comprehend its meaning but the most difficult to define it exactly. Bharat Muni, the writer of Natya Shastra believes that the theme is the body of the drama and the rasas are the soul that makes it alive. Rasa is the corner stone of Indian aesthetics.
THE THEORY OF RASA :
Rasas, about which we have discussed so far, originate from bhavas, the state of mind.
Primary Human Emotions
According to Bharat Muni, the sage priest, the primary human emotions are delight, laughter, sorrow, anger, energy, fear, disgust, heroism and astonishment.
Nine Primary Rasas
According to Natya-Shastra there are nine primary rasas –
Sringara (romance, love)
Hasyam (laughter, mirth)
Karunyam (compassion, mercy)
Bibhatsam( Disgust, aversion)
Bhayanakam (horror, terror)
Adbhutam (wonder, amazement)
Adbhuta rasa deals in wonder. It is the rasa of mystery, astonishment and curiosity. By cultivating the right attitude towards the miracle of life, the Adbhuta rasa can be a permanent companion. The colour of Adbhuta rasa is yellow and the presiding deity is Brahma.
ADBHUTA RASA DISCUSSED
Adbhuta Rasa is a marvellous sentiment in Drama. From the dawn of civilization, human beings have tried to understand everything and are still trying. The feeling of wonder comes when one recognises one’s own ignorance. Adbhut rasa thus depicts this feeling of wonder and refers to the “marvellous sentiment”, used in dramatic performance.
Even though it is mentioned as the eighth rasa by Bharat Muni, he never diminishes the importance of this sentiment. In fact, he considers it the only sentiment which is essential part of all literary pieces. Also this sentiment that gives flesh and blood to any literary pieces and keeps it lively. In the case of visual arts, especially drama, it is an inevitable element. Moreover, all the famous dramatists, starting from ancient to modern ones, have used this rasa in every turning point of their dramas. Thus Adbhuta Rasa is one of the most widely explored rasas in theatre.