Radhanath Swami spoke on the power of devotional music and reminded guests of the popularity of mantra music in mainstream London in 1969, when George Harrison teamed with Hare Krishna devotees to record the Radha Krishna Temple album. The track,“Hare Krishna Mantra,” reached number 12 in the charts and the devotional band appeared on the television show, Top of the Pops.
Speaking on the potential of kirtan for self-transformation, Radhanath Swami said, “Yes, it’s enjoyable. Yes, it soothes the mind from the anxieties and stresses of life. Yes, it liberates us from so many confusions and so many unhappy situations. But beyond that, this kirtan has the potential of awakening our deepest potential – our own very spiritual essence. And then we can be an instrument of that essence, which is the greatest joy of life. Taking just feeds the fire of our longings, but when we learn to find satisfaction in being an instrument, in giving, then there is actual fulfillment. Kirtan inspires us, cleanses us and empowers us to uncover that treasure within.”
The evening was a great success and enthusiastically received by attendees, many of whom were experiencing kirtan for the first time. Events in the coming months look to expand and build community as well as to provide inspiration for a more widespread project now in the works, called Kirtan UK.