A Kirtan is a gathering where we sing mantras together with live music on the harmonium and other Indian instruments.
The word «Kirtan» derives from the root «kirt» which means to «cut through». In the word mantra, the «man» stands for mind, the «tra» for crossing over. It means that we sing to cut our thoughts and cross over to set us free from habits and unconscious patterns of the mind, to pass the mundane state of mind and create an elevated atmosphere.
Moreover, sound is considered to be the source of all manifestation, because all matter is basically a form of vibrations. Whereas our voice is the barometer of our soul. By affecting the voice, we als affect the soul.