How We… Introduce Singing & Chanting

Welcome to How We…

Each month, members of the Children & Families team will be sharing How We have introduced aspects of our community to our children. We will cover everything from the Aether to Zeus and we invite you on our journey.  We continue with How We… Introduce Singing & Chanting

Since my little dilophosaurus was a bump I’ve sung them chants. They would usually get “Earth my body” as I rocked them to sleep in my arms. Instead of lullabies they had chants for bedtime. We joined a chanting workshop at Pagan camp, and they loved it, learnt some new chants and sang them to anyone who would listen. I have a chant CD and find new ones on YouTube.

We sing them for festivals, for opening and closing rituals, and just because. We love singing and chants are easy to pick up and repetitive, kind of like nursery rhymes. Some of my little dilophosaurus’ favourites include ‘Horned one lover son’, ‘Hoof and horn’, ‘Moon star rising’,” We all come from the Goddess’

Manager, Children & Families Team

Sound plays a huge part in my spiritual practice, as sound, music and chanting have always been a strong connection to my own mindset. I use a variety of instruments in combination with singing and/or chanting such as my lyre harp, kalimba or singing bowl.

Ever since a child I have always used vowel chanting and incorporate this with runic sigil work.

I have found this to be a fun and creative process for family practice too as it links to other artistic options, chanting runic or vowel chants as sigils are drawn, etched, or painted onto some form of surface. It allows for some great impromptu sound and imagery ideas.

My daily practice utilises rune chants (individual runes, or the three Aetts repeated) and Edda related singing also, though this tends to be, again, to affect my mindset for the day/festival/period, and less about prayer, devotional, or any directed magical working. The combination of singing, chanting, instruments, and rhythms is, for me, a wonderful time and space to dwell in and I try to expose my children to similar experiences whenever they’ve shown the inclination to explore spiritual sound like “Dad”.

As my children age, they become more and more distracted by the temptations of the technological world around us and I find that music, and singing together in particular, can really develop a sense of togetherness and literal harmony. Connecting through song, rhythm, chanting or music generally is as important as breath to me…

Northwest Liaison, Children & Families Team

Although I am a singer and sing at any given opportunity, I have never really used it within my rituals. That is until earlier this year when I took my son to an open ritual for Earth Day, and we were sharing chants at the end. He learnt 2 right away and has enjoyed adding them to our ritual for the Summer Solstice and wants to add them in to others throughout the year. He has even made up 2 of his own and seems to really engage with the short, repetitive format of them.

Southeast Liaison, Children & Families Team

Singing and chanting within Paganism is not something I’ve ever covered yet with the children as I have never used it within my practice. I have made up chants but never really felt confident enough to use myself never mind show the children. That’s not to say singing doesn’t go on in the house because it most certainly does. The children are always singing, and we all love music. We have many instruments in the house all of which are played, guitars, the ukulele, keyboards, kazoos, recorder, kalimba, horn and recently acquired shamanic drum and singing bowl.

The children have all had a go at beating the drum but I have yet to put it into pagan practice but when I do I shall teach the children although no doubt with how musical they are they will probably be drumming and chanting before I do without any input from me at all.

Mid-West & Wales Liaison, Children & Families Team

Singing and chanting are a massive part of my practice but they’re also a massive part of my life and our home life as a family. It’s hard to separate where music for magic begins and ends, as to me, all music is pretty magical.

All the younger kids are musical in some way. The youngest drums and sings, the older ones play guitar, keyboards, and percussion. One is learning DJ skills! We often make silly songs together, writing nonsense lyrics to our favourite tunes. I play devotional music I’ve written, and when the older one asks about it, I’m happy to explain. We talk about the emotions attached to music, and how being creative musically can be an outlet for emotion or help us regulate. It’s a psychological kind of magic and I think all the family appreciates that.

Secretary, Children & Families Team