Personal Space 

Sanskrit sister act

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Shanti Shanti, the stage name for 23-year-old Sara Forman and her sister Andrea, 25, formerly of Nevada, now of Castle Rock, is "the only Sanskrit rock group in the world," according to Andrea.

"Our work combines Sanskrit chanting and uplifting pop music produced by our father, Robert Forman," said Andrea, pictured at right.

Rising stars in the metaphysical community, Shanti Shanti aims to provide a vehicle for the ecstatic meditative state the sisters experienced as young children and still experience now.

"The real interesting thing is that my sister and I, at ages 7 and 9, could spontaneously read, write, speak and chant Sanskrit," said Forman. "That's the metaphysical part."

The girls had seen Sanskrit, a 5,000-year-old spiritual language from India, written in their mother's alternative medicine texts, but they lacked an explanation of how to understand or chant it.

"I didn't think it was weird until my dad said, 'Hey, this is a dead language. How do you know it?'" said Andrea. "My sister and I thought everybody could do this. We were drawn to it because the experience was so incredible.

"We call it the Sanskrit buzz -- it's like being ultra-human, with a complete stillness of the mind. Our joke onstage is that we can promise a guaranteed buzz within four minutes."

Practicing Catholics, the Forman parents encouraged their daughters to experience all religions and spiritual practices when they were growing up. They've studied Hebrew chanting and have participated in Hindu and Buddhist ceremonies, but chanting Sanskrit is their true love.

"It's usually chanted by male pundits in India, passed down from father to son," said Andrea. "Now it's two white girls from Reno."

-- Kathryn Eastburn


Shanti Shanti Sanskrit Chanting Concert, a fund-raiser for Rocky Mountain Insight

Friday, April 22, 8 p.m.

First Congregational Church, 20 E. St. Vrain (corner of St. Vrain and Tejon streets)

Tickets: $20 individual, $45 family, $15 student

For more information, visit www.rockymountaininsight.org, and click "Events."


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