Experiencing God Through Song

Chants for Worship and Awakening

I was introduced to chanting on my first week-long meditation retreat. The place was Elat Chayyim, a Jewish retreat center in the Catskill mountains in New York. Chant was our form of morning worship. For each chant, one of the teachers would provide a reflection or teaching about its meaning. Then we would sing. For five minutes or more, we would repeat a short text set to a beautiful melody. Then we sat in silence. It was powerful; for many, it was the highlight of the day. Though the meditation practice was the primary focus of the retreat, and essential to awakening, I also recognized how chant helped to deepen our spiritual experience. Chanting can be a way of experiencing God through song.
     This album grew out of my desire to bring this experience beyond the retreat center and into worship services, rituals, and our lives in general—to help bring us a deeper experience and greater awareness. Making a recording was not originally part of the plan. Experiencing God Through Song began life as my senior project at the Wake Forest University Divinity School. The project was one of music composition—to write new chants and create a songbook that people could use for worship and meditation in their churches, synagogues, and other venues. Everyone I shared the chants with loved them, but wanted them in a form they could listen to. And so a CD was born to accompany the chant book.

The chants themselves are based on the some of the world’s ancient spiritual traditions. The texts come from the Bible; the Tao Te Ching; poetry by Rumi, the 13th century Sufi mystic; and other traditional sources. I’ve set these words to original melodies to open the heart and awaken the spirit. Listen, sing along, and share the chants with others in your spiritual community. Enjoy your exploration of awakening.

Download the Chant Book:
Experiencing God Through Song

 

Download the sheet music for the chants alone, without the reflections and introductory material:
Sheet Music

 

 

Audio
1. A Thirsty Fish 10. Love Your God
2. Always With Me 11. Nothing to Believe
3. Become Passers-By 12. Oh God, I Have Heard
4. Birdsong 13. One Thing I Ask
5. Consider the Lilies 14. Priestly Blessing
6. How Precious 15. To Praise
7. If I Am Not for Me 16. What I See
8. It Also Made the Key 17. Where the Wind Blows
9. Love the World 18. You Have Captured my Heart

If you would like a printed and bound copy of Experiencing God Through Song and/or an audio CD containing all of the chants, contact me and I will be happy to mail them to you.