ARADHNA TEMPLE TOUR REVIEW - Building Bridges with Faith Communities
East West Temple Tour Builds Bridges of Peace
The music and spirituality of Aradhna brings cultures and faiths together in Birmingham
Aradhna is a small group of musicians consisting of Chris Hale on Sitar, Peter Hicks on Guitar, and Fiona Hicks on Indian Violin along with a local tabla player. Each of them have a deep connection with India and call themselves followers of Yeshu (Christ). With this devotion they sing bhajans, or spiritual songs in Hindi and English. This tour was one of the many projects of East West Trust, which seeks to build bridges with the various faith communities in the West Midlands.
I was only one observer who was able to enjoy Aradhna's music in various places of worship including a Hindu Temple, a Buddhist Centre, a Christian Church, and a Sikh Gurdwara. That simple experience is enough to make one stop and evaluate one's personal life journey and appreciate the diversity of this modern world. The soaring vocals, devotional quality, and beautiful blend of eastern and western sounds in Aradhna's Yeshu bhajans, seems to bring a sort of “healing” experience to those present, as one participant said. Another said that his experience was, “ very relaxing, calming and peaceful…this can assist in people's prayers and worship.”
The contrasts of the worlds we found were quite astonishing. Hindus, Buddhists, Christians, Sikhs, and Atheists have their obvious differences. However, each of these people in these various walks of life and faith cannot deny the distinct humanity we all possess. For Aradhna, they had not just music to share, but a very real message of love: a love that chooses give and give without expecting anything in return, a love that chooses to look at ones own heart to become clean rather than pointing the finger at others, a love that shows kindness and forgiveness in return for wrongdoing, a love that accepts people as they are even if they seem to be different. This kind of love builds a bridge strong enough where unity, peace, and tolerance are not only possible—but a reality.
Aradhna follow closely the teachings of their Guru (Teacher), Yeshu the Christ, that peace and love must dwell richly in ones own heart before it is possible for it to exist in a community. Mahatma Gandhi adds, “Be the change you want to see.” In conclusion, let us take Aradhna's message to heart for the well being of our families, our communities, our world, and ourselves. May love build the bridges of peace and unity among all the various faith communities and ethnicities in the West Midlands and United Kingdom. Let that be the prayer we all share.
The Temple Tour was organised by East West Trust as a part of Sanctuary and in partnership with faith community leaders and Churches in Birmingham."
Visit Aradhna's website to learn more about them, their tour dates, or to experience their music, lyrics, or videos. Click here now!
The song playing in background is titled "Marga Darshan" performed by Aradhna
The lyrics are in Hindi. The English translation is:
Guide me in the path of vision
Cleanse me from my sin
Lord, protect my life
I come to your presence
I come to your feet
I come for shelter
I come to you for refuge
The song playing on the home page is titled "Gaao Re" performed by Aradhna