Sunday, December 12, 2010

Kirtan with Travis Eliot

I have been attending my yoga teacher and friend Travis Eliot's kirtans on Fridays at Bhakti Yoga Shala in Santa Monica. For those of you who don't know kirtan comes from the Sanskrit and means "to repeat." It is a call-response form of devotional singing. Travis leads the Sanskrit mantras and the audience responds. The mantras are usually short. As Travis explains it through a metaphor, imagine a windshield wiper moving back and forth and in the process cleaning the windshield. The repetition of the mantras are windshield wipers cleaning us spiritually.

I had the pleasure of listening to Daphne Tse who was a guest at Travis's kirtan this past Friday. She came all the way from Bali, shared her beautiful voice and led the second half of the kirtan with her magical "Saraswati Mata." I highly recommend checking out her album "Mata." This was a truly amazing kirtan because two hours got compressed into two minutes. I guess bliss can relativize time. You don't necessarily need to board a spaceship and travel at the speed of light.