Spirit of Sacrifice and Service celebrated with Love

26 – 27 April, Ernakulam Brahmasthanam, Kochi – Bharata Yatra 2014

Despite soaring temperatures, many thousands turned out for Amma’s two-day Brahmasthanam Festival at Kochi.

Amma addressing the gathering

Amma gave talks on both days, led bhajans and then gave darshan throughout the day and deep into the night. On the second day of the programs, the darshan ended only around 4 in the morning the following day, with Amma having been on the stage for 18 hours continuously.

Addressing the assembled crowd in her talk, Amma said that selfless service is the way to God. “The idea of selflessness makes our acts perfect. Humankind will have greater solidarity if we agree to live according to the principles of sharing and caring,” she said.

On the first day of the programs, Amma was presented with the Pandit Karuppan Award. Pandit Karuppan was a 20th century scholar and a social reformer known as the Lincoln of Kerala. The award was presented by Moopil Swamiyar, the spiritual head of the Trissur Brahmaswom Matham. The award was given to Amma for her dedication, sacrifice and outstanding contributions to society. {read more}


Amma distributing the health care card, Ernakulam District Collector MG Rajamanickam (green shirt) helps the process

Amma has always said that serving the poor is the true worship of God. That’s why each of Amma’s spiritual programs marks and expansion of her humanitarian aid projects. This program was no exception; on the second day of programs, Amma inaugurated a new medical aid initiative. 500 low-income families living in the vicinity of Amrita Hospital have been given free medical cards. These cards guarantee free medical care for all members of the household, benefiting more than 2,500 people. These families will receive both outpatient and inpatient care free of charge.

The community of devotees and volunteers in Kochi is particularly service-oriented. A group of Amrita University students recently pooled their pocket money and used it to pay for the digging and installation of a well, providing drinking water for remote village of tribal people in the Wayanad District of Kerala. The students had seen the plight of the people while serving in medical outreach initiatives and decided to do what they could to help them. When the students shared this news with Amma, she was moved by their spirit of sacrifice and told them that the Ashram would match their efforts by providing wells to two more villages in the same tribal region.


Ernakulam for Amma's program
Devotees chanting Santhi Mantras during Amma’s program. Click on the image to enlarge

Overall the mood in Kochi was one of celebration, with the devotees and volunteers patiently bearing the heat and the crowds. The night she arrived, Amma served prasad dinner to all the local volunteers, who had been working hard to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable experience for all who would attend Amma’s program over the weekend. And they would continue to serve throughout the weekend… wherever one looked, one could see volunteers distributing water, erecting shades, putting out more chairs… On both evenings, as Amma left the stage and walked along the balcony overlooking the university campus to her room, the mood was jubilant as the crowd roared with appreciation and delight. In Kochi as much as anywhere, it is clear that people take the love and inspiration they receive from Amma and use it fuel purposeful lives marked by selflessness, devotion, and values. We imagine that nothing pleases Amma more.

– Tulasi

Watch video of Amma’s arrival: