The Beautiful Art of Singing
— by Angel de Armendi, Music Director
For seven days during my Kundalini Yoga retreat I woke up around three in the morning to the sound of a singing ensemble in preparation for Sadhana. Sikh Dharma International states that “Sadhana means daily spiritual practice. It is the foundation of all spiritual endeavor.
Sadhana is your personal, individual spiritual effort. It is the main tool you use to work on yourself to achieve the purpose of life. It can be done alone or in a group. Sadhana is whatever you do consistently to clear your own consciousness so you can relate to the infinity within you.
Before you face the world each day, do yourself a favor—tune up your nervous system and attune yourself to your highest inner self. To cover all your bases, it will include exercise, meditation, and prayer.” The exercise was strenuous but doable to a certain extent and I was careful enough not to injure myself through overexertion, specially since I am not a regular yoga practitioner. I did not know most of the prayers and what they meant. However, the beautiful music and chanting captured my heart, I surrendered to the practice comforted by the singing of hundreds of voices meditating together from all over the world. I do not think I have ever done so much chanting in my life in one single week. Even after workshops were over or Sadhana was finished I would continue chanting through my day in my head or out loud to myself, or with others who could not help but continue singing. It reminds me why I am a Music Director at our church and why I love community singing.
Science continues to support a multitude of claims that singing is beneficial to our body, mind, heart and soul, even if you are tone deaf! If you already sing in the shower or elsewhere regularly you already know how great it feels. If the hymns during services are not enough, consider a visit to a Singing Meditation session on Tuesdays at 9:30 am or a Choir practice on Wednesdays at 7:00 pm in room L. Give it a try for a few weeks! Not only will you be treating yourself to beautiful music but those who get to sing with you or hear your voice will be enriched as well tremendously.
It is a new year, the world may seem dire, but your voice may add a faint glimmer of hope the more it is heard!