In Hinduism, devotional songs are an especially important part of religious custom because they provide a way for devotees to express their love and affection for God. Through music, a Hindu expresses his “bhakti,” or devotion, and symbolically submits to the power of God.
Hindu devotional songs take many different forms in Hinduism -- bhajans, aartis, kirtans, dhrupads, chalisas and kathas are all equally popular. Unlike complex Sanskrit shlokas and mantras that usually require some knowledge of the ancient language, devotional songs are frequently composed in colloquial language, set to melodious music and have mass appeal. One very important purpose of singing a devotional song, especially in a group, is to invoke the power of the divine in an environment where social class does not matter, and everyone is equal in the eyes of God.