A devotional song is a hymn which accompanies religious observances and rituals. Traditionally devotional music has been a part of Christian music, Hindu music, Sufi music, Buddhist music, Islamic music andJewish music.
Each major religion has its own tradition with devotional hymns. In the West, the devotional has been a part of the liturgy in Roman Catholicism, the Greek Orthodox Church, the Russian Orthodox Church, and others, since their earliest days. A devotional is a part of the prayer service proper and is not, in these contexts, ornamentation. During the Protestant Reformation, church music in general was hotly debated. Some Puritansobjected to all ornament and sought to abolish choirs, hymns, and, inasmuch as liturgy itself was rejected, devotionals.
In Eastern and Near-Eastern religions, devotionals can function as communion prayer and meditation. These are sung in particular rhythms which are sustained over a prolonged period to give practitioners a mysticalexperience. In Hindu music, the genre arising out of the Bhakti movement (devotion), it takes forms like Bhajan, Kirtan and Aarti.