Shyam aaye, Holi celebrated

17 Mar 2014, Amritapuri

As she does on every Monday when she is in Amritapuri, Amma came to meditate on the Ayurveda beach in the afternoon. After the meditation, as it was the Holi celebration day, she asked devotees to explain the meaning of the special festival, the festival of colours.

As soon as the devotee finished his explanation, other devotees came to Amma with a tray full of colours. He gently dabbed Amma’s cheek with a sandal colour powder. A few others joined too, smearing Amma’s face with different colours: pink, yellow, green, orange, blue… Amma was beaming with joy with a mischievous smile, as “Mata Rani Ki.. Jai” was called out.

She started too in return smearing the faces of everyone around her with different colours. Everyone’s face was lit up with joy.

Amma was then handed a ‘pichkari’, filled it with colored water, and out went the streams of colored water, spraying on the faces around.

Amma sang ‘Ayi he holi’, with everyone joining in and clapping joyfully… Another memorable special time with her, was stored in the hearts and souls of all present.

– Kannadi

Amma in Parippally

23 Feb, Parippally – Bharata Yatra 2014

The travel journey between Palakkad and Trivandrum on Amma’s Bharata Yatra had a peculiar aspect: The route to follow meant that the caravan of buses would pass right by Amritapuri on the way to the capital of Kerala.

The lunch stop was at Paripally orphanage. It was a special treat for all the wonderful kids living in that institution – the very first project that Amma undertook as early as 1991. The 420 westerners in 13 tour buses, some of them first timers, would also have the chance to discover the orphanage and meet the children.

The highlight of the 3 hours spent at the orphanage was that Amma gave the microphone to the kids gathered around her asking them to share stories, make imitations, present brief performances and sing bhajans.

She later sang two memorable bhajans, in folk tune, with everyone following suit with the kids, singing with great enthusiasm and joy, clapping hands and moving around.

A life-time shared moment, that most of the children and many of the tour group members present, will never forget.

– Tulasi

Amma in Tiruvananthapuram

24-25 Feb, Tiruvananthapuram, Kerala – Bharata Yatra 2014

On February 24th and 25th 2014, Amma held the annual Brahmastanam Temple festival in Trivandrum, Kerala.

Upon arrival in her ashram at Kaimanam on 23rd evening, she served dinner to one and all and sang inspiring bhajans.

Amongst the important personalities that came to meet Amma were Sashi Tharoor, Member of Parliament of Tiruvananthapuram; MA Vahid, Congress Member of Legislative Assembly and Members of the Travancore royal family.


Amma in Palakkad

21-22 Feb, Palakkad, Kerala – Bharata Yatra 2014

On February 21st and 22nd 2014, Amma held the annual Brahmastanam Temple festival in Palakkad, Kerala.

Upon arrival in her Palakkad ashram on 20th evening, she served dinner to one and all and sang inspiring bhajans.  Amma had Satsang, Bhajans and Darshan over the next two days.

Amrita SeRVe centre launched in Wayanad

Amrita SeRVe was inaugurated on January 13th, 2014, at Valaramkunnu Tribal colony in Wayanad district of Kerala. Amrita SeRVe, will implement a comprehensive series of welfare projects intended to improve the infrastructure, education and basic facilities in communities enabling them to become self-reliant role-model villages.


Under the auspices of the project, the General Secretary of MAM Swami Poornamritananda Puri, launched Amrita RITE, a tablet enhanced literacy program and free tuition center. The project co-ordinator from CREATE introduced the tablet aided literacy applications to the tribal community. Children and adults wholeheartedly participated and were excited to have a hands-on opportunity with the interactive user interface.


Swami Poornamritananda launching the program in a tribal colony

Japanese students bring warmth to Uttarakhand

February 2014, Uttarakhand

A group of 73 students from all over Japan came together and travelled to India to help take part in Amma’s rehabilitation of the areas devastated by the 2013 floods in the state of Uttarakhand. Amma pledged to rebuild 500 homes in the area. The first phase of that work is going on in and around the village of Chandrapuri in the district of Rudraprayag, on the way up to Kedarnath.

Students from the IVUSA (International Volunteer University Student Association) organization have collaborated with Embracing the World since 1998, participating in projects to build homes for tsunami refugees in both Kerala and Tamil Nadu after the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami, and more recently in 2011 and 2012 in Raichur, after devastating floods in Karnataka.

Many of the volunteers in this group were coming back to India for the second or third time for this purpose.

Remarkably for many of the students, these few weeks of time they spent volunteering, involving long days of hard physical labor, is their only vacation for the year. Inspired by Amma’s own life of dedication and service, they choose to spend this time not for their own enjoyment, but to do something for the benefit of the less fortunate.

Upon their arrival, the students were given a formal welcome and honored as official state guests by Chief Minister of Uttarakhand, Shri Harish Rawat. When addressing the students the Chief Minister said, “Amma is doing wonderful work and if you are with her your path in life will become clear.” The Chief Minister spent some time interacting with everyone and expressed his admiration and support for the students’ efforts.

Over the next several days the students were involved in all aspects of the construction work, including concreting, assembling the metal foundation beams, and transporting building materials from the riverbed up steep hills to the sites. The students are an extremely well organized group and divided themselves up into smaller teams, spreading out to work throughout the valley at all the different construction sites.

Each day when they showed up to do their seva they were met by scores of local villagers who were swept up by the Japanese students’ enthusiasm and compelled to join in the fun. With their open heartedness and spirit of selfless service, the students created joyful interactions, much to the amusement of their local Indian co-workers. Despite the work being very hard on a physical level no one minded. It was really like a party and everyone could be seen smiling and laughing as they worked.

Most of the work involved bringing building materials to the hamlet of Batwadi Sonar where a community hall is being built for the villagers. All day the students and villagers together hiked up and down the steep hill to the hamlet carrying stones and sand that will be used to build the hall. At the end of each day, just before the sun went down everyone would gather together around a giant Pipal tree in the village and sing bhajans together. While there might not have been any professional singers or musicians there, the innocence and beauty of the singing directly carried over from the joy and cooperation the students and villagers had shared working together all day. {Read Blogs here}

On their final morning of work the Japanese students introduced the local villagers to the Amala Bharatam Campaign. Again working side by side with all the locals, the Japanese students fanned out and collected trash throughout the area. Dozens of bags of trash were filled from the riverbed, which is sadly still full of debris from the flooding many months before.

Before leaving the Japanese students took part in a formal cultural program held at one of the local schools just down the road in the town of Chandrapuri. The Rudraprayag District Collector, Mr. Raghav Langar presided over the festivities which included many songs and dances performed by both the Japanese and local students and was attended by hundreds of local people.

When it was time to say goodbye, both the students and locals were sad to bid farewell to their newfound friends. They Japanese students donated their time, energy, and enthusiasm, but the volunteers said that they received much more than we gave.

In the sharing of loving care across cultural boundaries and language barriers, the line between “giving” and “receiving” disappeared, and volunteers and recipients find that they are not so different after all. In truth, even though they spoke Japanese and Garwhali, they share a common mother tongue: the universal language of Love.

– Nath

Read blogs from Uttarakhand

Touching the hearts in Kozhikode

18-19 Feb, Kozhikode, Kerala – Bharata Yatra 2014

On February 18th and 19th 2014 Amma held the annual Brahmastanam Temple festival in Kozhikode, Kerala.

Upon arrival in her Kozhikode ashram on 17th evening she served dinner to one and all and sang two new Kerala folk songs.

During the public function on February 18th the new charitable project “Hridaya Sparsham” (touching the heart) was launched. It is a joint venture of MAM and the newspaper Mathrubhumi Daily. Mathrubhumi managing director Virendra Kumar, managing editor PV Chandran and AIMS paediatric cardiology Head of Dept Dr R Krishna Kumar were present to lanuch the programme with Amma.

“Hridaya Sparsham” will focus on diagnosing and treating heart diseases in children throughout the state. According to statistics, every year 1700 children in Kerala are born with a congenital disease. However, most of these are not diagnosed and thus many children develop severe health problems or even die prematurely. The main reasons for this are lack of awareness in the general public about such diseases, a shortage of good medical care and lack of money by the families to pay for checkups and, if needed, treatment of their children.

Over the following months, AIMS Hospital will conduct medical camps in remote areas all over Kerala with the goal of providing a free thorough health-check to every child in the state. If treatment is required, AIMS will provide comprehensive state-of-the-art medical care, including free heart surgeries, to deserving children.

After launching the project, Virendra Kumar said: “The word love becomes meaningful only when we compare it to Mother’s love. That love is without boundaries or limitations. It does not desire anything, it simply offers itself to the world. There is only person who truly does that – our Amma. I lost my biological mother. But one will always remember one’s mother, right from birth to death. This is why now, in my anxieties, my joys, my problems, I remember both – Amma, Mata Amritanandamayi and my biological mother.”

On both programme days, Amma sang many new and old Malayalam songs, gave satsang, led the manasa puja and received one and all with her very own Hridaya Sparshan – the loving touch that opens and heals the hearts of millions around the world.

– Tulasi

Amma in Maariyamma temple

17 Feb, Mangalore, Karnataka – Bharata Yatra 2014

After the program in Mangalore Brahmasthanam {news},  Amma visited Maarigudi temple of Maariyamma on the way to Kozhikode. Amma visited there upon the invitation of the temple authorities.