Kirtan

Yoga teacher training is opening up my eyes to a whole new world.

As part of my yoga teacher training, we attend Kirtans, a lovely, free-form mash-up of music, call and response, and chanting. I’d never been to one before, and to be honest had never even heard of them. Now I wish I had known about them years ago!

There is an aspect of spirituality to a Kirtan, though the beauty of the spirituality is that it can be entwined with any other religious beliefs (or non-religious beliefs as the case may be.) Our voices and the music blended together, often in rounds, to the point that I could no longer distinguish my own voice from the collective. By the end of the two hours we were all in sync.

As I glanced around the room during the different chants, I could see people in many different emotional states. Some were swaying with their palms open to the sky, completely in the flow of the rhythm. Others were teary-eyed. And still others were just trying to keep up with the sanskrit. I was struck by all of the emotion in those chants, and I was amazed with how we could all come together with such spontaneity and make something so beautiful right there on the spot.

I left the Kirtan humming, thinking of the lessons of Hanuman and Shiva and Ganesha. Thinking about the unifying power of music. Most of all, I felt grateful, so so grateful, to receive and provide joy in equal amounts.

Sonic Yoga will be holding Kirtans at their studio every 3rd Sunday of the month. http://www.sonicyoga.com