Kirtan in North America
Kirtan is a form of sacred communal chanting set to music. The term first appears in the Vedas, indicating that forms of the practice are as old as Hinduism. In translation, kirtan connotes recitation, storytelling, or religious performance. In traditional Hindu settings, it is often practiced as a call and response chanting style with a singer leading and an assembly providing the response. As a form of sacred music, kirtan is linked to bhajans, which are songs and hymns with multiple verses. Japa, a religious practice that involves contemplatively repeating a mantra or an invocation of a favorite deity also shares similarities with kirtan.
A compelling feature of kirtan is that it has found an audience far beyond the shores of the Indian subcontinent among people who were not born Hindu and would not necessarily consider themselves Hindu either. This gives kirtan a transnational and transreligious quality. A major destination for...
- 1.Albanese CL (2007) A republic of mind and spirit; a cultural history of American metaphysical religion. Yale University Press, New HavenGoogle Scholar
- 2.Cole R, Dwyer G (2007) The Hare Krishna movement: forty years of chant and change. I.B. Tauris, LondonGoogle Scholar
- 3.Dass BR (1971) Be here now. Lama Foundation, San CristobalGoogle Scholar
- 4.Das K (2010) Chants of a lifetime. Hay House, New YorkGoogle Scholar
- 5.Fuller RC (2001) Spiritual, but not religious: understanding unchurched America. Oxford University Press, New YorkGoogle Scholar
- 6.Goldberg P (2010) American veda. Three Rivers Press, New YorkGoogle Scholar
- 7.Hawley JS (2015) A storm of songs: India and the idea of the Bhakti movement. Harvard University Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
- 8.Hawley JS, Juergensmeyer M (2004) Songs of the saints of India. Oxford University Press, New YorkGoogle Scholar
- 18.Jackson CT (1994) Vedanta for the west; the Ramakrishna movement in the United States. Indiana University Press, IndianapolisGoogle Scholar
- 19.Schmidt LE (2005) Restless souls; the making of American spirituality. Harper, San FranciscoGoogle Scholar
- 20.Yogananada P (1946/1998) Autobiography of a Yogi. Self-Realization Fellowship, Los AngelesGoogle Scholar
- 21.Yogananda P (1938/1974) Cosmic chants. Self-Realization Fellowship, Los AngelesGoogle Scholar