Amma in Media

When Amma first manifested her mission of Love in the mid ’70s, it was not advertised in the press, and no one wrote a story about it afterwards for the daily news. Still, hundreds came that day, and thousands kept coming. As Amma says, “Amma needs no propaganda. Does the ever-radiant Truth need any propaganda? Those who have purity of heart and thirst for God will seek Amma and reach Her.”

That is how it was, and this is how it still is today. Before the papers were championing Amma as “The Hugging Saint,” Her devotees and disciples were coming from all over Kerala, India, Europe, Australia and America-it was their thirst for God that brought them to Amma’s tiny fishing village, not a write-up in a paper.

Now after 30 years, the press has taken notice. Wherever Amma goes, they seem to follow. And in doing their research, the reporters find a vast spiritual and humanitarian mission that has existed for decades. Amma embraces the journalists and answers their questions in the same way She does any of Her other children. Rooted in Her experience of Oneness, Amma’s words are earthy, profound and imbued with a mother’s love. In reading or watching these reports, one often gets the feeling that the interviewer has gotten more than they bargained for; they went to Amma in search of a story – and found Love.

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —
me says
“A large New York crowd waits patiently for hours hoping to spend a few moments with a very special woman who’s traveled thousands of miles from her native India, delivering a powerful message of enduring faith and hope.”

“These devotees are united in the belief that Mata Amritanandamayi is a saintly wonder. She draws millions of people around the world for spiritual relief that people say comes from her gentle touch.”

“Affectionately called “Ammachi” or “Amma,” meaning mother, she reaches out to one and all with a simplest of gestures — a meaningful embrace. Her welcome is warm, her smile is sparkling and her white sari glows and offers up a hug, as if each person in her arms were the only person in the room.”

“It is indeed fascinating to watch the hundreds of people — Christians, Jews, Muslims, Buddhists and Hindus — kneel as they get closer to Ammachi and her magnetic hugs. She embraces all faiths and describes herself as a servant of god.”

“Her outreach has a profound effect on those who receive her hugs. They come to heal and open up their hearts to a woman who has dedicated her life to spreading infinite compassion and motherly love throughout the world.”

Fox News Live

July 7, 2007

me says
“In India she is revered as a saint. But Amma has also conquered the world.”

“Through her embrace, Amma spreads peace and love worldwide.”

French National TV, Ch 6

me says
“She preaches peace, non-violence and love…”

RAI3, Italian TV

me says
“Young, old, rich, poor, healthy or sick, no one is beyond Amma’s embrace. I saw smiles and tears and a genuine sense of warmth and tenderness.”
“Certainly I sensed no hint of emotional manipulation.”

BBC Radio,

Trevor Barnes December 31, 2006

me says
“Cynics may sneer, but take a look at what Amma has done, an orphanage where 500 children live … Amma has donated $46 Million to tsunami relief in South Asia and $1 million to the Katrina Relief Fund in the US … a multimillion dollar international charity that has blossomed from a smile and a hug. For Amma it’s proof of what a mother’s love can do.”

Delia Galager, CNN News,

August 27, 2007

me says
“They need no money, no knowledge of any holy text or ritual practice, no special strength or beauty or spiritual fine-tuning. They need only come to tiny Amma…”
“Her arms are open to all: infants and elderly, wiry collegians, hippies gone gray, dudes in Dockers or saffron robes, Christians and Jews, Hindus and Buddhists, children and the childlike… No questions asked. One lesson offered: Open your heart to the world.”

USA Today, Feature Article,

July 19, 2006

me says
“She will never turn anyone away, and She never charges any money for her hugs. In India, She has been known to sit for more than 20 hours, and hug more than 20,000 people, just in one day.”

ABC News, Chicago

me says
” People wait hours, just to spend a moment with her.”

ABC News, New York

me says
“Amma travels the world holding hugging sessions, encouraging selfless service, and spreading ‘the healing qualities of universal motherhood.”
The Christian Science Monitor

July 28, 2006, ‘Hugging saint’ is compassion in action

me says
“The motherly love expressed in her embrace – an unconditional love that doesn‘t judge or calculate… a life of selfless service and surrender… For many people it is exactly the absoluteness of that simple gesture that has drawn them to her… The embrace is the negation of all hierarchy between teacher and student, and therefore, devoid of any arrogance…”

Neue Zürcher Zeitung

Leading National/International Swiss Newspaper, October 3, 2003

me says
“Amma…one of the most notable religious phenomenon of the day.”
El Pais,

Spain’s leading newspaper, July 14, 2005

me says
“…Amma encourages people to look more deeply into their own religious traditions, whatever they are. At the root of all authentic teachings, Amma says, are love and compassion, which she tries to convey through the nurturing mother image she projects.”

Voice of America,

radio and website, 27 July, 2006

me says
“The world places great importance on Mata Amritanandamayi’s role as a
woman spiritual-religious ‘leader’ and there is the feeling that she can lead the people of the world.”

Deacon Sunday Herald

India, May 1, 2005

me says
“Recognized worldwide for her spiritual and humanitarian work, Amma…ministers to the poor of India with food and open arms, often for more than 20 hours at a stretch. Jan Kounen’s awestruck film follows the mahatma from one jampacked event to another…”
NY Times

26 July, 2006, ‘Darshan: The Embrace,’ a Portrait of India’s ‘Hugging Saint’

me says
“Over the past three decades, Amma… has been fighting world suffering by tirelessly offering hugs, both to strangers and to her legions of follower…”

Corey Kilgannon, New York Times

July 18, 2004

me says
“So healing are the properties of her two-minute cuddles that hundreds of thousands of devotees have descended on the southern state of Kerala for Amma’s golden jubilee…”
The Times of London

September 23, 2003

me says
“…Meryl Perlson of Medford sat on her knees quietly as Amritanandamayi reached out to press her head to her bosom and chant in her ear. It was over in less than 20 seconds, but powerful enough to bring the mother of two to tears…”

The Boston Globe-21

July 2005, Front Page

me says
“…I sensed no hint of emotional manipulation….I have to say, being hugged by Amma is, quite something.”

Trevor Barnes, BBC’s Radio’s Reporting Religion,

December 31, 2005

me says
“She does not attempt to convert people of other religions. There are Jews, Christians, Hindus, Buddhists, and Atheists in her crowds. If she has a dogma, it is simple: Love and serve one another.”

Boston Globe,

July 26, 2003

me says
“They came by the thousands, from the city and from all over the country, just looking for a hug.”

Jennifer Lebovich, The New York Daily News


me says
“…Mata Amritanandamayi, one of India’s most famous living Hindu saints.”

Wall Street Journal

Sptember 22, 2003

me says
“Her message is simple: only through love can humanity be united.”

Dallas Morning News,

June 28, 1998

me says
“…known globally for her charitable work and her emphasis on selfless service.”

Los Angeles Times

me says
“Technology industry icons, management gurus, business leaders, India’s president, and 100,000 devotees from around the world…celebrated the 50th birthday of…a woman who wields considerable influence over the world’s second most populous country…Amma…sends a simple but powerful message of ‘unconditional love’ by hugging men, women and children.”

Khozem Merchant, The Financial Times of London,

September 29, 2003

me says
“Indian President APJ Abdul Kalam has joined one of India’s best-known religious gurus, Mata Amritanandamayi, in an outspoken denunciation of poverty.”

Charles Haviland, BBC News,

September 26, 2003

me says
“Ms. King called the Hindu woman ‘god in flesh’.” (Ms. Yolanda King, late daughter of Rev. Martin Luther King)
Associated Press

me says
“Nobel Peace Prize winner Mr John Hume … (was) at the RDS in Dublin yesterday as Amma, India’s “Hugging Saint” dispensed free hugs to all.”
“… Many came away visibly moved by the experience.”

The Irish Times,

November 15, 2004

me says
“Her visitors in Bonn feel as if they too have received a generous gift. Walking away from being hugged, many of them laugh and cry at the same time and are totally moved..”

Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung,

October 10, 2001

me says
“…this Holy Mother Amma…must be an entirely extraordinary, remarkable Saint.”

Die Welt

me says
“Recognized as one of the greatest spiritual social workers of the last
millennium …’ ”

The Times, Kuwait

me says
“Amma – India’s best known and most loved female guru – doesn’t promise miracles or any sudden materialization of jewels, no miraculous healing, no sudden illumination, but simply the gift of her embrace. For all, without discrimination, for whoever wants it.”

the leading ‘intelligentia’ newspaper of Italy,
October 6, 2003

me says
“Amma manages a spiritual empire based on the principle of unconditional love for fellow beings…The impact Amma has, is to a large extent due to her absolute unity of motivation and action. …”
“Whoever is shaking their head at the successful CEOs celebrating Amma’s birthday, should think twice. After all, even their success and happiness is based on a successful dialogue between head and heart. …only ‘work and love’ together build the crucial pillars necessary for the unfolding of a successful life.”
Der Standard,

The Austrian intelligentia daily, Column by Antonella Mei-Pochtler
October 3, 2003

me says
“Amma’s central message is the omnipotence of love and compassion. She teaches the importance of selfless service. Amma’s innumerable charitable projects have given relief to the lives of many poor around the world.”


Finland’s leading newspaper,
October 10, 2004

me says
“She is known as Amma or Divine Mother. She draws masses with the simplest of gestures – a hug.”

NBC’s Today Show, Ann Curry, host, during segment called, ‘The Hugging Saint’

me says
“Amma is renowned for Her extraordinary hugging. Amma makes no promises, She welcomes all religions, Her hugs are free.”

CNN’s Ginny Moost

me says
“This is something you have to see to believe. Amma came to California to hug thousands of people.”

NBC News, Los Angeles

me says
“Wherever She goes, She draws huge crowds, and Chicago was no exception.”

ABC News, Chicago

me says
“She is known around the world as the Mother of Love, the Hugging Saint.”

ABC News, Chicago

me says
“Thousands of people are coming to Northern Virginia to meet the Hugging Saint.”

Fox5 News, Washington, D.C.

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