Why Ajeet Kaur Is In Love With Sat Nam Fest
By Julie Fustanio Kling
Ajeet Kaur was carried away, lost in ideas as she hummed the Om Shiva mantra and pondered the three-eyed one when I caught up with her by phone at her home in Putney, Vermont. Having recently released her fourth album, the Kirtan musician and yoga therapy teacher, who began practicing Kundalini yoga when she was in her mother’s belly, shifted gears to talk about the upcoming Sat Nam Festival.
The Sat Nam Fest (April 5 - 9th) in its seventh year now at Joshua Tree will host Ajeet and many other spiritual teachers at a place that is sacred to many. When I first went to Joshua Tree for Shakti Festival in 2012, another yoga festival that features Kirtan music, I thought I was listening to the voices of angels. Listening to Ajeets music takes me right back.
Another reverie began as Ajeet recalls her childhood roots of going to yoga festivals in the desert with her family. “Joshua Tree feels like another planet to me,” she says. “I don’t know if it’s my own experience or if it is the energy innately held in the desert and the mountains.” Whatever it is, it is amplified when Ajeet goes to Sat Nam Festival. “Being out there in the desert, being with so many people chanting is a really powerful experience for all of us.”
For the 25 year-old singer and her husband, Nirmal Khalsa, who is also a Kundalini teacher, it is a multi-dimensional reunion. Their love story began at Sat Nam Fest when they discovered that they were both connected very deeply to Guru Dev Singh, a Mexican shaman who taught them how to heal others through a type of Kundalini called Sat Nam Rasayan. Sat Nam Rasayan is a traditional way of healing through meditation based on self-awareness. Like all Kundalini yoga, it was established under the guidance of Yogi Bhajan.
Ajeet and Nirmal, who had seen each other at retreats in the past because their families are both students of Yogi Bhajan, reconnected in line to get a vegan meal. Kaur admired Khalsa’s Huichol beaded necklace, which symbolized the unbound nature of the ego and its connection to the soul. At the end of the festival he gave her an eagle necklace and told the founder of the Sat Nam Fest: “Ajeet served me food and I think I am in love.”
The Sat Nam Fest launched by the record label Spirit Voyage in 2010, was created with the mission of carrying forward the vision of Snatam Kaur (who is not directly related to Ajeet but was the name given to her parents by their teacher). As the website describes it: “It was born out of the inspired dream to want to bring people together in happy, healthy, holy harmony with the intent to dive deep, expand, explore, elevate and celebrate through sacred mantra music, Kundalini yoga, meditation, sadhana, soul inspiring workshops, community meal time and more.”
Coming to Sat Nam is like coming home for Ajeet. Her mother Hari Kirin Kaur is an expressive arts therapist and Kundalini teacher and her father, Thomas Moore, was a monk who became an author of spiritual books like “Care of the Soul in Medicine.” Her parents met just before her father was going to be ordained as a Catholic priest and they have always explored spiritual practices together. “The Common connection in my family was everyone relates to and is open to more than one tradition,” she says.
After being diagnosed at 8 with Hashimoto, an autoimmune disease that prevents the thyroid from making enough hormones, Ajeet fell in love with the healing lineage of Kundalini and found her voice.
“Mantra and music has always been a big part of managing my own health,” she explains. “It kind of changes the way you approach life. When crazy things are happening around you, you don’t freak out as much.”
And in this time of political instability throughout the world, Ajeet is happy to be singing songs from her latest album, “Haseya,” which means “to rise up.” To learn more about Ajeet, visit www.ajeetmusic.com.
And to learn more about Sat Nam Fest visit or to book your ticket visit www.satnamfest.com.