In the kirtan tradition, the power of mantra music is never underestimated. Sacred sound affects the mind, body and heart on the deepest level for a transformation of consciousness. For this reason, kirtan has been taken outside of temples and homes into the street for centuries. This is often called ‘nagar sankirtan’ – meaning singing of the divine names together in public.
British indie band, Kula Shaker, sang about the practise of taking kirtan out in the streets in their song ‘Sound of Drums’ – ‘I hear the sound of drums, and a melody, I hear the sound of drums. Singing the names above in the city, yeah revolution for fun!’
There has never been a more desperate need for a spiritual revolution. In cities and towns, the pressures of modern life seem to only rise day by day. Street kirtan offers a solution, by calling to water the root and affect change on the deepest level – at the heart.
We’re attempting to start a new wave of people who love to chant in this way – yogis, hipsters, kids, dancers – all are welcome. Our first event was held last week in Union Square, and it was a fantastic success. Hundreds gathered to take part in the electric kirtan with the Mayapuris and Ananta, plus local breakdancers and capoeristas. A good chunk of them followed us as we danced and sang through Chelsea to end at the Donut Plant, where blueberry donuts and lemonade were sponsored by the owner, Mark, another kirtan fan!
So here’s where we want your help. We’re trying to come up with a great name for this new wave of street kirtan. Something to really catch people’s attention and put kirtan firmly on the NYC radar. We’ve come up with a lot, but we’re still searching for that elusive catchy tag. If you have any suggestions, please comment below.