Glimpses of Community Kirtan

Glimpses of Community Kirtan

This is from our Community Kirtan in Sarasota Florida:   “Holy smokes!!! Great crowd at Unity of SRQ tonight for our weekly kirtan. We created amazing vibrations of sound, devotion and love. Above it all and part of it all, we raised $176.00 for the All Faiths Food Bank!!! Thank you all for your generosity and for sharing your hearts and voices. Thanks as well to Stevananda and Tej for leading beautiful chants and to Hukam for his rock solid drumming and support. I love you all and feel so very blessed for our SRQ kirtan community. And, last but certainly not least, thanks to Jen Canfield and the generous souls who fund the Call & Response Foundation for facilitating the creation of our weekly SRQ kirtan group…..and for paying the rent!!! Jai Hanuman, Jai Sita Ram!!!”     Chant by twinkle...
Why Do We Chant

Why Do We Chant

“Kirtan is the glue that binds out hearts together.” – David Newman   Here is a link to a short read from Kripalu’s website about about the basics and overview of Kirtan. It has quotes from David Newman, Krishna Das and Deva Premal. Enjoy! “In the last decade, India’s ancient call-and-response form of chanting has been reinvented by modern devotional artists who are blending traditional kirtan with modern music genres such as rock, R&B, hip hop, and electronica—breathing new life (and new devotion) into yoga’s sacred chants. But what, exactly, are these chants about?” click HERE to read...
San Francisco Community Kirtan

San Francisco Community Kirtan

The Call and Response Foundation sponsors community Kirtan events in 6 different cities (soon to be 7 as Houston joins us). We are amazed to hear from them each month with the stories they share. It reminds us how significant this practice can be and how it touches the lives of so many. Here is an excerpt from our San Francisco host. “Our weekly Wednesday night kirtan and the sangha that’s grown around it continue to blossom. I don’t know how some of these people find us, but they continue to come in and have their hearts opened by the practice. The group ranges from people off the street who’ve never heard of kirtan or Krishan, to a young man, recently from the East coast, who needed some kirtan connections and new friends here. My fave recent story: a man we’ll call Peter started coming to kirtan several months ago. New to the practice, he was unemployed, depressed, and then got hit by a car. He started coming early and getting harmonium/chanting lessons from Miko, started reading more about Bhakti, and has become a weekly contributor to our group. He’s been unable all these months to put anything into the donation jar, and is one of the reasons I started having food for the group every Wednesday. This past week, there was an envelope in the jar. It was a card from Peter bursting with gratitude for Kirtan and the weekly group, along with a cash donation “to support the Love and buy kitchari supplies.” He got a job and is...
Interview with David Newman

Interview with David Newman

Call and Response Foundation is proud to partner with David Newman to offer tours and retreats. David, along with his partner Mira, share their talents to touch so many through chant as well as other community projects. David is a kirtan chant artist, songwriter and Bhakti Yoga practitioner. He travels extensively sharing kirtan and his style of devotional music, embodying the meditative and ecstatic The following is an excerpt from a longer interview. You can read the full interview HERE but in the meantime we wanted to share David’s thoughts on Bhakti Yoga.   LM: As a practitioner and educator of Bhakti Yoga, the yoga of love or devotion, can you talk about the benefits of this kind of yoga, specifically as it relates to the honest search inward for connection to the Self? DD: When I got introduced to kirtan, which lead me to the practice of Bhakti Yoga, it was early on that feeling of getting connected to devotion and a sense of gratitude towards something greater in life beyond my own ideas, aspirations and beliefs, my own mind. When I had a vision of that something greater, I was enthusiastic about practicing in a way that would enable me to surrender to t-h-a-t and that is the essence of Bhakti Yoga – surrendering to that whatever you call  it, everybody has a different name for it and a different relationship to it, but it is about expressing one’s devotion and surrender to that “Not my will, but thy will be done.” To say it brings a greater sense of flow and ease into one’s life would be an understatement....
Help Songan Village and The Yoga Barn-Bali

Help Songan Village and The Yoga Barn-Bali

On Thursday 9 February, unrelenting heavy rain caused a devastating landslide in Songan Village, North Bali which killed 7 people (including 2 children). This is a very personal loss for us at The Yoga Barn – Bali and BaliSpirit Festival as this is where our Bali Regreen bamboo reforestation outreach program takes place. Members of our outreach program have lost their lives. BaliSpirit has already donated 50,000,000 IDR and have been working up in the village since this tragedy occured, rebuilding homes and schools that were destroyed. The village of Songan is covered in dirty water and mud, a breeding ground for diseases like Typhoid if medical equipment and services are not supplied fast enough. We are reaching out to you, our community as we need your help. Donations of food, water, clothes or blankets, are essential in helping prevent further trauma and disease, to provide food, water and building materials to those who survived. To contribute, you can drop in to Frozen Yogi on Dewi Sita Street in Ubud and donate money or food, water, clothes or blankets – which will go long way. Additionally, we’ve placed cash donation boxes at The Yoga Barn reception desks and we’re holding two events this week, the profits of which will go directly to this cause. Women’s Circle, 6-7.30pm, Friday 17 February, The Yoga Barn, 130,000 IDR Proceeds from this weeks Women’s Circle will go towards the Songan landslide tragedy, led by Yoga Teacher and Humanitarian Activist, Universal Empress – Nadine McNeil​. Benefit Concert (pictured) with John de Kadt & The Hanumen, 7 – 9pm, Saturday 18 March, The Yoga Barn,...
Community Kirtan outreach update

Community Kirtan outreach update

Hello everyone! We wanted to share with you how excited we are about our Community Kirtan outreach program.  It has been growing steadily and we now have programs in 7 cities: Montclair NJ, Manchester CT, Amherst MA, Sarasota FL, San Francisco CA, Burlington VT and Houston TX. The community teams in each of these cities are incredible and we are inspired every time we see photos or hear stories about how the kirtan touches their community. We wanted to share a few of these here. Enjoy!   Blessings! In San Francisco the Community Kirtan hosts began having hot food each week. Now, the community has begun to bring food items as well and it has grown. If someone is hungry there is food available to ground before the practice or it can be had afterward as blessed prasad. May you continue to warm hearts and bellies SF! In Burlington, community members have learned more about the lifeline that a Kirtan can provide for those in need of connection. “I cannot explain kirtan but I know it needs to keep happening in our community. People need each other and need that space….kirtan keeps them going every week. Just that something that is there, no matter what else may not be, to gain so much from participating in the experience, knowing it will be there again and again.” You can learn more by going to our Community Kirtan page on our website. Happy...

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