“maaveli naadu vaaneedum kaalam
maanusherellaavarum onnupole”

The time when Mahabali ruled the country,
All of mankind lived as one.

Each Onam {news}, Keralites throughout the world sing these words. Amma says that the meaning is not that everyone was equal in terms of money or capabilities, but that society functioned with the harmony that comes when everyone—from the street sweeper to the prime minister—lives in adherence with dharma, in the knowledge that all are manifestations of the one Self.

This year, in Amma’s Onam message, Amma said, “Although we might not talk about it much, the concept of “untouchability” and discrimination between castes and religions are still there in a subtle form in the human mind. During Onam, may the Brahmins, Nambootiris, Nayars and people belonging to the scheduled castes and tribes, the leaders, the artists and the labourers forget all distinctions and come together to take part in the Onam feast. May they take part in the Onam games together. In this way, may the feeling of difference between human beings be reduced.”

As always happens on Onam, Amma later gave everyone who’d come to Amritapuri—about 10,000 people—a plate of onasadhya [the traditional Onam feast]. Watching the queue, one could easily see fruit of Amma’s prayer in full manifestation. Under Amma, people of all castes, ashramas [stages in life] and countries were queuing up and eating side by side—workers, Amrita University students, brahmacharins, sannyasins, tribal children from the Ashram’s orphanage, householder devotees living in the ashram and those visiting from America, Japan, Russia, Africa… Even people of different faiths were present.

Everywhere we look in today’s world, we see people trying to solve the problems of war, terror and hate crimes. The great jnanis like Amma know that such horrors are only symptoms of the root problem—the feelings of difference and “otherness.” In true unity, there can be no fear, hatred, suspicion or jealousy. This is the “oneness” of King Mahabali’s golden age that is glorified in the Onam song. In coming together through the knowledge that we are all children of Amma, true unity can be attained. The Truth of our essential oneness has never been more clear than in the presence of Amma.

—Tulasi

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Category : Onam
hariom