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Invitation to Participate in the Chanting of Mantras and Prayers in the Traditional Call/Response Style of India  

Presented by a group of local Kirtan singers and musicians

            In the ancient tradition of the Vedas, there is the concept of the totality and Oneness of all creation and beyond, as God/or Goddess. The presence of God/Goddess, can be seen in all beings, elements and created things as well as in the Unmanifest. It is understood that the various Gods and Goddesses manifest and embody particular gifts and qualities of the “One,” each having different names, attributes and meaning. The purifying and blessing power of God’s many names is mentioned in almost every spiritual tradition. Kirtan is the practice of singing and repeating the names of God (in both male and female aspects), as well as using descriptive phrases of divine attributes. The word kirtan comes from the Sanskrit root “kirt’ meaning “to name, to communicate, to celebrate, to praise, to glorify.” Kirtan is a devotional practice. Kirtan is categorized as one of the methods which draw the mind inward. It can be seen as a bridge between our outer and inner selves and an expression of our desire to know and love God within. Traditionally, kirtans are done in a call and response style. It is a group effort—there can be no kirtan without both parts. The songs depend on the group’s wholehearted response. Concentration and focus are important aspects of singing kirtan—closing one’s eyes, clapping and listening intently can help. When the group is in sync, the atmosphere becomes charged with spiritual energy. Kirtan is a method of attuning ourselves to God, whatever inner meaning that has for each of us. As in any spiritual practice, what we bring to kirtan will determine what we receive from it. Kirtan makes a deep imprint in the mind which brings the memory of God whenever there is pain, sadness or difficulty. Kirtan can be raised to a level that carries the minds of all involved to a higher plane, where communication becomes communion—an offering and a true prayer.

 

Cost For Chanting Sessions - By donation