The ancient practice of Kirtan as a part of Bhakti-Yoga* (loving kindness yoga). Kirtan is an audience participation, call-and-response (antiphonal) musical form for singing the praises of the Divine. Historically, the instrumentation may vary greatly, from simple singing and clapping to a rather large ensemble. At present, Amrita Ensemble harmonies consist of harmonium, ektar, tabla, mridangam, bells, zills, tamboura, tanpoori, bansuri flute, dumbec, tar, djembe and voice.
Because of the antiphonal format, no memorization is necessary to participate! All that is required is a willingness to let go of pre-conceived notions of devotions and let love flow! Singing is encouraged, as the vibration of the sounds helps to deepen the experience of devotion, but listening is also a profound spiritual experience.
What are some other words for God, in languages from around the world?
This incomplete list has yet to include many names and cultures, however it illustrates that the Divine has been called by MANY names over such a long period of human existence that the actual naming becomes of secondary importance to the devotional attitude of love, peace, and wisdom!
Indeed, what word was uttered by Gandhi as he was dying? (“Ram”) by Christ? (Father)
*Bhakti-Yoga is the yoga of devotion to God, and surrender of the personal ego; Kirtan is chanting he names of God in call-and-response style.