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Difference Between Kiirtan and Prabhat Samgiita

Date: Sun, 16 Sep 2012 20:48:59 -0000
From: Dharmaviira Deva
Subject: Difference Between Kiirtan and Prabhat Samgiita



(Note: This is the second letter in this series. A link to the initial letter on this topic is appended below. - Eds)

"When Baba began composing songs He beautifully brought forth the true devotional expressions of our Ananda Marga sadhana. That is the inherent charm of Prabhat Samgiita. They purely reflect a bhakta's heart-felt feeling with Parama Purusa."

Yes, I agree wholeheartedly; and, with the recent observance of Prabhat Samgiita Day (14 Sep) here are some further reflections about Baba's divine compositions. Please share your thoughts as well.


By giving Prabhat Samgiita, Baba has beautifully filled one missing link in our devotional approach and sadhana program.

After half-bath and preparing oneself in the physico-psychic way, then one link is needed before starting kiirtan. The intimate sharing of one's personal devotional feeling is needed. And that link is Prabhat Samgiita.


As we all know, kiirtan itself is the expression of one idea: Highlighting the glory of Parama Purus'a. And true kiirtan is to be sung out loud - collectively, or at least loud enough so others can hear. Of course, all Ananda Margiis yearn to sing His name and dance kiirtan. And our kiirtan mantra is itself a siddha mantra. Certainly, we are blessed to have our Baba-Nam-Kevalam kiirtan.

At the same time, as sadhakas we are not wholly satisfied with just the singing of kiirtan. Because every devotee also wants to express some personal, devotional, sentimental feeling of the heart to their most loving Parama Purusa. Because He is the Dearest One of the heart, the Heart of hearts, and the Soul of souls.

So it is natural that a sadhaka wants to pour or open their whole heart. And this can only be done by sitting in a lonely place and singing to Him directly and talking to Him. And in this way Prabhat Samgiita is the perfect medium.

Kiirtan is more of a collective approach, or we can say that it is even a little higher because there is only one idea: Baba's glory is everything. That is the one central theme of our kiirtan.

But, as we know, in devotional life a wide range of personal feelings come in the heart and mind of the bhakta and those need to be expressed and goaded towards Parama Purusa. Often it is difficult to express those sentimental feelings in a collective setting. Every sadhaka has their own way in which they wish to communicate their personal longing for Him. It depends upon a person's devotional standard and relation with Him. Some devotees have a special intimate relation with Parama Purusa and some practice another type of bhava with Parama Purusa. It varies from one sadhaka to the next.

And the various Prabhat Samgiita compositions enable on to express these different types of feelings towards the Lord - towards Baba. That is why Prabhat Samgiita stands as an ideal personal practice for each sadhaka - where kiirtan is more applicable to a collective flow.

This is the essential difference between bhajans (i.e. Prabhat Samgiita) and kiirtan. So many sentimental feelings and so many tales of the heart cannot get expressed in the collective flow.


So Baba has given Prabhat Samgiita as that intimate link between the bhakta and Parama Purusa. It is the ideal practice for sadhakas to express their unique personal feelings for Him. It is a way for devotees to feel Him more close.

Although philosophically, every devotee will admit that 'Parama Purusa, You are infinite'; but at the same time, in their heart, they will speak "Toma're ca'i ye ekante...": O my Dearmost, I want to have Your closeness in an isolated place. O' infinite Parama Purusa, I want to have You in a very personal way - in a secluded place - so I can open my heart, and share y feelings with You. O ' Baba, You are mine and mine alone.

Hence although Parama Purusa is infinite, but true devotees do not feel that He is infinite. They feel that: 'He is mine and mine alone'.

In that case, there is a deep need to communicate their inner feeling with Him, otherwise how can there be intimacy. Without intimacy, one cannot grow in sadhana. Such a feeling is devotion. And that only comes with the pouring of the heart to Him - He who is most close.

In that case without bhajan type of songs, and especially without Prabhat Samgiita, there is no way to express the feeling fo the heart. So that is why Prabhat Samgiita is that much needed missing link. Sadhakas have always had an inner-heart felt feeling for Him, Baba fulfilled that gap by giving expression to those feeling with His compositions of Prabhat Samgiita. That is indeed His special gift which He began on 14 September 1982.


"Toma're khunjiya' gechi vane vane maner kon'e khunjiya' dekhini..." (2807)


Baba I went on searching You in the external world, in the so-called holy lands, in the forest, in the cave of the mountain, and so many places, but I never tried to search You in the corner of my mind. I never looked there.

I observed many types of penance and took trouble to travel to the various "holy lands" in search of You; and I remained engaged in external worship using the traditional paraphernalia with lots of ostentation. All the while, I never understood that You are remaining so close to me - this I never thought. O' Baba, O' Divine Entity, You are always sitting in the mind and You love me very deeply and intimately. You shower Your love on me day and night.  

What I understood based on my little intellect, I tried to execute with my full strength and vigour. I remained lost in various attachments. I also searched You through exploration of knowledge - remaining busy with pen, paper and ink. By this way, my time was wasted. And I could never catch hold of You. Now, by Your causeless grace, I understand that You are always hiding in my mind. Your divine flute is always resonating. Baba, You are always gracious...

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