Music can aid with memorization of Baha’i Writings and also with uplifting the atmosphere during prayer time, children’s classes, and Holy Day programs.
Diana Howlett, mother of two, has written many songs to assist her children in learning the Writings and to broaden the range of songs available to them. She has released two CDs with songbooks: Songs of the Spirit (a series of songs on Baha’i themes, exploring quotes from the Writings or for Holy Days) and Intone O my servant (a series of Hidden Words and Baha’i prayers).
The CD is stuck in the back cover of the songbook if you order the physical CD from CDbaby using the links above (however please note the songbook is not included if you just download the tracks).
The songbooks contain lyrics, melody and the chords.
You can also find Diana’s music via itunes or her Facebook page.
Please note that any profits will go to the Fund.
[quote type=”center”]We, verily, have made music as a ladder for your souls, a means whereby they may be lifted up unto the realm on high.[/quote]
(Baha’u’llah, The Kitab-i-Aqdas, p. 38)
Diana says, “The tunes are simple, and harmonies can be added. Many of the songs have simple verses, which would lend themselves to having additional verses, or adjustments to suit particular groups. The songbooks can be illustrated by the children to reflect the visual imagery in the songs and further aid memorization.”
Seeing as Ridvan is coming up (click here for our post with ideas for celebrating!), Diana has kindly offered the sheet music and the lyrics for her song about Ridvan from Songs of the Spirit (track #7). These sheets are an example of what is included in the songbooks attached to her CDs if you order hard copies.
“My children learned the songs as they were written, over a period of a few years. We sang them around the piano. My daughter was 10 when she sang with me on the CD. Now 14, she tells me she still can remember many of the Hidden words she learned when she was younger, and if they are read in a devotional, she hears the tune in her head.”
“Similarly, she remembers aspects of the songs, such as the names of the notable people in the song ‘Eagles and Oceans.’ My son now 17 also remembers the Hidden Words.”
The music has been used in the UK to support children’s and junior youth activities and in primary schools. “Other feedback that I’ve heard from other families in the UK who have used the songbooks include a three yr old who knows all the Hidden words from ‘Intone O my servant’ and sings them around the house, a 10 year old who plays the tunes on his trumpet, and a project with local schools teaching them the ‘Gems’ song, where some headteachers wanted to use the songs for assemblies.”
Find Diana’s CDs with songbooks here: Songs of the Spirit and Intone O my servant.