Magic in Sivaji Park

26 February, Sivaji Park, Dadar, Mumbai — Bharata Yatra 2010

Amma started her programmes in Mumbai with a public function in the famous Shivaji Park, located right in the heart of the city. Amma was greeted at the dias with the traditional Maharastrian welcome — the sounding of horns followed by arati (the waving of lighted camphor) performed by five couples wearing traditional dresses.

Chief guest Mr. Chagan Bhujbal, Dep. Chief Minister of Maharastra, welcomed Amma on behalf of the people of the state. He said, “I know that after my speech I will go off the stage, but Amma will continue to sit here all night to meet the devotees one by one and give them darshan. I have been observing this for many years and over time I have wondered why so many people from different religions and regions come to Amma. It’s not that she does any magic – It is Ammas healing touch, which feels like your own mother is holding you, kissing and blessing you that has drawn nearly 30 million people from 192 countries to her darshan over the years.

Unlike other saints who sit in the Himalayas and are found missing in times of need, Amma can be seen right in the midst of the situation, working for the suffering, wiping their tears, building homes, schools, hospitals, feeding the hungry, and rehabilitating entire communities. It happened after the Gujarat Earthquake, the Bihar floods, the Tsunami and the Vidharba famine. This noble act sets her apart from any other saint in our country.”

Bollywood actress Smt. Smita Jayakar also addressed the gathering: “Apart from Ammas countless charitable activties, I admire that she is the “Hugging Mother”. Her divine hug sends us to a state of unconditional love, awakening our anahata (heart) chakra. When this happens the “Me & You” disappears, only oneness and unity prevails. This improves the quality of our thoughts and deeds.

Other guests who shared the dias with Amma were: Mr Yash Birla, Industrialist, Birla Group of Industries, Justice Radhakrishanan, Kishore Avarsekar, Chairman, Unity Infra projects, Bala Nandagaonkar, MLA, Dr Jagannath Rao Hegde, Ex Sheriff of Mumbai, Udit Narayan, renowned playback singer.

Amma gave away 100 more free scholarships to disadvantaged children as part of MAM’s Vidyamritam project.

Five books in the local language of Marathi were released at the occasion: Amma’s biography (written in the Kadambari Style of Marathi), Amma’s inaugural address of the Vivekananda International Center in Delhi 2009, Amma’s address at the Conference of Women spiritual and religious Leaders in Jaipur 2007, Amma’s address at the occasion of receiving the Cinema Variete prize in Paris 2007 and a Souvenir Book of Amma’s visit to Mumbai 2010.

The Mumbai programme truly was  a dignified start for the Holi festival, which began at midnight, while Amma was continuing her darshan, hugging people from all over the world and all sectors of society, from the fields of politics, arts, science, religion, music, film, media, business and IT. It is this convergence of people from all walks of life that made the programme so unique and colourful.

–Tulasi

Amma in Pune

23-24 February, Pune — Bharata Yatra 2010

Pune was once known ‘Punya nagari,’ the meritorious city. Over time, it became shortened to just Pune. Maharashtra is known as the land of saints, which include Jnanesvar, Tukaram, Eknath, and Namdev. Amma’s ashram is only a twenty minute drive from the samadhi shrine of the great saint Jnanesvar, who spread the message of the Gita in the native Marathi language. In these two days of programs, Amma is also spreading the eternal message of Sanatana Dharma.

During the programs Amma sang many new bhajans in Marathi, and Amma’s satsangs were translated into Hindi. On the last night, Amma spoke about the importance of dispassion in one’s daily life.

The temperature during the day was scorching hot, while the nights were cool. People came for Amma’s darshan from all flocks of life; from villagers to vice-chancellors of universities.

Amrita Vidyalayam children presented different cultural programs, including some traditional Marathi dances. There was a Kathak dance performance by Dr. Nandakishore Kapote, a disciple of Bhrigu Maharaj, a maestro of dance. On the first night, there was a wonderful performance by Manish Omano on the slide guitar and Santosh Ghante on the harmonium, accompanied by Sukhad Munde on pakawaj and Santosh Salve on tabla.

A new biography of Amma written by Raj Lakshmi Deshpande in Marahi titled ‘Jagan Mata’ was released on this occasion.

At the end of the last darshan, Amma sang a few Telugu bhajans and Mata Rani upon the request of devotees. The darshan ended with what has become a Pune tradition…a local family of devotees dressed Amma up as Krishna and implored Amma to reenact some of the leelas of Bala Krishna.  The devotees approached Amma with large mud pots of curd and milk and offered Amma a stick to break the pots.  Amma herself then drank from each pot and distributed prasad to everyone.

– Tulasi

Amma in Hyderabad

21-22 February, Hyderabad — Bharata Yatra 2010
Two days of Brahmasthanam festival programs were held in the ashram in the Mahendra Hills, Secunderabad, Andhra Pradesh.

Amma’s satsangs were translated into Telugu, the local language, and touched on many points.  Highlights included the importance of giving and generosity, the value of avoiding intoxicants, and the meaning and worth of self-control.

Amma sang many new and old bhajans in the Telugu language and led a manasa puja at each program, speaking in Telugu at the puja. The devotees were thrilled to hear Amma speak their native tongue. When Amma started to speak in Telugu, there was a roar of applause from the crowd. As part of the program, Amma distributed free educational scholarships to five hundred more students under the Vidyamritam free scholarship scheme.

Students of the Amrita Vidyalayam, Hyderabad, performed a drama and danced during Amma’s darshan.

Pazhassi Raja award to MAM

pazhassi-1119 Feburary, New Delhi

The President of India Mrs. Pratibha Patil presented the ‘Dharama Ghadga’ award to Swami Amritaswarupananda today at Rashtrapati Bhavan.  Swamiji accepted the award on behalf of MAM for the charitable activities undertaken by the MATH.
The Pazhassi Raja National Royal Awards are distributed by the Pazhassi Raja Charitable Trust for exceptional contributors to society from all walks of life.

pazhassi raja award receipients

Pazhassi Raja award receipients

Above: Swamiji is seated next to the other award recipients in their respective fields, including: Amitabh Bachchan, (acting) Dr. Bala Murali Krishna (music), ISRO Chairman Dr. K Radha Krishnan (science), Shashi Tharoor (statesman), Hariharan (music direction)

Amma in Bengaluru

17 -18 Feb, Bengaluru, Karnataka — Bharata Yatra 2010

The two day brahmasthanam festival in Bangalore came to an end on Friday morning. In spite of the programs being held on working days, thousands came for Amma’s darshan in this IT city.

On the first day of the program Amma handed over a symbolic key for 100 houses built for the Karnataka flood victims to the Chief Minister, B.S. Yeddyurappa.

Amrita Vidyalayam children presented the cultural programs on the first day and the Amrita University students on the second day. The Amrita Vidyalayam children performed various dances, including some that displayed Karnataka folklore, called ‘Yakshagana.’ The university students enacted a wonderful two-hour musical drama on festivals celebrated in India.

There were numerous newly tuned Kannada bhajans sung by Amma in the programs and she gave instruction for the manasa puja in the Kannada language, much to the delight of the devotees.

Upon the request of a blind devotee who came for darshan, Amma sang few bhajans  in Telugu while she was giving darshan.

Having showered happiness and love on the children of Bangalore, she will now go on to Hyderabad for the next program.

Swami Ramakrishnananda to visit S.America

Swami Ramakrishnananda Puri’s South American Tour- March 2010

Caracas, Venezuela
Saturday, March 6- 2pm
Satsang, bhajans and meditation.

Location:
El Muro de la Paz,
Calle Cabriales con Luis Roche
Quinta LakLuk,
Colinas de Bello Monte

Sunday, March 7- 9am
IAM Course
Location- TBD
Contact:
Tel. 00 58416 116-5544 email: tarinima_amma@yahoo.com

Lima, Peru

Monday and Tuesday, March 8 and 9- 7pm
Satsang, bhajans and meditation.
Location: Club Social Miraflores
Malecón de la Reserva 535, Miraflores
Contact:
http://www.ammaperu.com.pe/


São Paulo, Brazil
Friday, March 12- 8pm
Saturday, March 13- 7pm
Satsang, bhajans and meditation.
Location:
Senac Lapa Faustolo
Rua Faustolo, 1347 – Lapa
São Paulo – SP
Contact:
amma-sp@ammabrasil.org
or call: (11) 5543-4088

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Sunday, March 14- Sunday 6.00 pm
Satsang, bhajans Q&A and meditation.

Location:
Hotel Excelsior
Av. Atlantica, 1800 Copacabana
Monday, March 15- 7pm
Satsang, Puja, bhajans and meditation.

Location:
Amrita Temple
Rua Simonides N. A. Filho, 296 – Bairro Fonte Limpa

Contact:
Rio & Araruama
amma-rj@ammabrasil.org
or call: (21) 3521-8371.

Amma will inspire others

February 17 – Bengaluru, Bharata Yatra 2010    `

The Chief Minister of Karnataka, BS Yeddyurappa, was on hand today to receive the symbolic key of the first 100 houses built by MAM for the 2009 flood victims. Upon receiving the key from Amma, the Chief Minister in turn handed it over to the deputy commissioner of the Raichur district. The ashram is planning to build a total of 2000 houses in Karnataka. Earlier the Ashram had announced 50 crores for the rehabilitation of the flood affected area.

After handing over the key, the Chief Minister addressed the packed gathering on the Ashram grounds and said, “For people like me in public life and people living in urban areas with life’s tensions, Amma has come to shower Her Love. All over the world people wait for Amma’s arrival and Darshan like the proverbial chataka birds waiting for the rain.”

The Chief Minister said that the flood-affected areas have been severely damaged; millions of acres of crops have been destroyed, and more than 100,000 houses have been affected.  He commended Amma on setting an example of how to react to a crisis and how honored he felt to have the opportunity to meet Amma.

The Chief Minister shared with everyone how the MAM’s involvement with the government came about. ‘On 15th January MAM entered into an MOU (memorandum of understanding) with the government. And within 20 days, Amma has completed 100 houses and the key has been handed over to me. I am grateful to Amma.  This will inspire other donors to complete projects with the same zeal and urgency.’

Prior to coming to the stage. the Chief Minister had an opportunity to meet with Amma privately.  In that meeting the local MLA, Miss Shobha Karandlaje, proposed that Amma set up a multi speciality hospital.

The Chief Minister ended his address by requesting AMMA to visit the flood affected areas and console the affected.

–Kannadi

Amma in Mangalore

13-14 Feb, Mangalore, Karnataka — Bharata Yatra 2010
Amma conducted two days of programs in Mangalore as part of the annual brahmasthanam festival. The programs were held on the premises of Amrita Vidyalayam, Mangalore. Boys and girls of the school welcomed Amma to the stage, dressed in traditional costumes, playing hand cymbals and waving fans. Some of the boys were dressed as tigers, and their dancing created a festive mood.

Each time Amma walked to the stage she was greeted by devotees dressed in the different traditional style of ‘Tulu Nadu.’ The stage was beautifully decorated with palm leaves and traditional artform images like Teyyam and Yakshagana.

Amma led the manasa puja in the native language, Kannada, much to the delight of the local devotees. Many new bhajans in Kannada, Konkoni, and Tulu were sung by Amma.

For the evening function, dignitary J. Krishna Palemar, Hon. Minister for Ecology, Environment, Ports, and Inland water transport helped to distribute free scholarships to students as part of the Vidyamritam scholarship scheme. He shared the dais with dignitary Dr. Subroto Chatterjee, Director of Johns Hopkins Medical University, Maryland, USA. J. Krishna Palemar praised how Amma is spreading the Indian culture all around the world. He said, ‘after Swami Vivekananda, Amma is the one who is spreading Hinduism around the globe.’

As part of the Amrita SREE self-help group, tailoring machines were given to members of the garmenting unit. Wheelchairs were also distributed to the physically handicapped.
– Das

Amma in Talassery

10, 11 Feb — BharataYatra 2010

Amma arrived in Talassery the evening of February 9th, to conduct the annual Brahmasthanam festival. As usual, Amma gave Satsang and sang bhajans in both the morning and evening programs. The stage background was decorated with a colorful photo of the Kali, ‘Bhavatarini’, as seen at the Amritapuri temple.

The second day of programs was the day before Shivaratri{news}. During the Shani Puja worship, at the end, Amma said, ‘Shivaratri is not only tomorrow. Actually, every day should become Shivaratri. Simply keeping awake and forgoing sleep is not enough. We have to awaken to that state (Shiva). We need to gain awareness in our thoughts, words, and deeds. Then everyday becomes Shivaratri.’

Scholarships for children were also distributed by Amma, as part of the ‘Vidyamritam’ free educational scholarship scheme. Children from Amma’s schools,  ‘Amrita Vidyalayam’, came from five different cities and offered cultural performances. The main performances included martial arts shows, traditional and modern dancing, and dramas.

Many people who came to the program at Talaserry have been devotees for many years. The brahmasthanam temple was consecrated by Amma herself in 1999.  Amma has been giving programs here since 1985.

As darshan ended, around 4’o clock in the morning, standing near her darshan seat, Amma sang the Punjabi bhajan ‘Mata Rani’. Commemorating the day of the Shivaratri, Amma sang another song ‘Bolo bolo sab mil bolo Om Namah Sivaya’. For about half an hour, as Amma sang, the whole crowd became jubilant and joined in this special celebration. To most there,  it was a celebration with that True Auspiciousness that is known as Shiva.
–Kannadi