Sacred Songs (4)

Sacred Songs

The devotional songs below are original music and lyrics by Kathleen Karlsen honoring the Judeo Christian tradition. This includes angels and the concept of the Holy Spirit as well as expressions of mercy and compassion. Information is provided about the symbolism of the five elements, the breath, angels and archangels. 

Watch 150+ videos on Kathleen Karlsen’s YouTube channel.

May I Sing of Thee?

After leading an evening of singing at a sacred music event a few years back, I was accused of cultural appropriation by one of the attendees. The kirtan (a Sanskrit word for singing mantras in a group) had included Hindu, Buddhist and Christian traditions. I was told that I needed permission and initiation from a guru or monk to be qualified to sing in an Eastern tradition.

I took the concern seriously. However, after pondering the situation in the subsequent months, I was inspired by the idea that I could ask God directly for permission to sing His praises. This is the origin of my musical response to the cultural appropriation accusation and the birth of the song, “May I Sing of Thee?”

Watch 150+ videos on Kathleen Karlsen’s YouTube channel.

Breathe Through Me

Breath, fire & water… music for universal spirituality. God is associated with the breath, fire and the wind in many traditions. The Holy Spirit in Christianity is an undifferentiated power of God. The Holy Spirit is the focus of many devotional songs in the Western or Judeo Christian tradition.

The Western Holy Spirit is akin to Shiva, third person of the Hindu Trinity. The idea that God breathes life into animate form is also a common theme in many traditions. The Holy Spirit is also known as the Holy Ghost. There are seven gifts of the Holy Spirit: wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety and fear of the Lord.

Lyrics and vocals by Kathleen Karlsen. Arrangement and production by Jake Fleming. Plus Jake’s sweet sax throughout. Lyrics below.

Holy Spirit
Breathe through me
Send your light
through my soul
Holy Spirit
Breathe through me

Sacred Fire
Burn through me
Send your light
through my soul
Sacred Fire
Burn through me

Living Water
Flow through me
Send your light
through my soul
Living Water
Flow through me

Watch 150+ videos on Kathleen Karlsen’s YouTube channel.

Beyond the Clouds

This devotional song has two main inspirations. First, the Hindu concept of space or ether as one of the five fundamentals elements or forces in life. Many mantras are classified as being aligned with one of the five elements: earth, water, fire, wind and space. The concept of the space element is a bit difficult to personify as a deity but works well as a part of nature.

Secondly, I was inspired by the well-known Buddhist mantra “Gate gate paragate, parasum gate bodhi svaha.” This is generally translated as “Gone, gone; gone wholly beyond.” Moving beyond the clouds was the closest metaphor I could come up with to have a sense of moving beyond the troubles or dualities of earthly life.

Watch 150+ videos on Kathleen Karlsen’s YouTube channel.

Blessing for the Road 

This is a simple prayer and devotional song inspired by a traditional Irish blessing. The song was written for a friend who was traveling extensively.

May you find what you seek
May your heart be at peace
May your dreams never end
May the road be your friend
May you love, may you love….

May the stars all align
May the sun always shine
May your soul be your guide
May God walk by your side
May you love, may you love….

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Author Kathleen Karlsen

Kathleen Karlsen is a musician, artist, writer and speaker. She is the author of two books (Flower Symbols and Vocal Medicine) and over 200 articles. Kathleen, her husband Andrew, and their five children live in Bozeman, Montana. More about Kathleen Karlsen.

Vocal Medicine Book

WESTERN SACRED SONGS ARTICLE SUMMARY 

The devotional songs in this article feature original music and lyrics by Kathleen Karlsen honoring the Judeo Christian tradition. This includes angels, the Holy Spirit and the concepts of mercy and compassion. Information is provided about the symbolism of the breath, angels and archangels.

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