20-22 June, MA Center Chicago, Elburn, IL – America Yatra 2017
Amma returned to her Chicago Ashram for three days of programs.
Spread on 141 serene acres, MA Center Chicago has become a hub of activity for Amma’s Mid-western devotees. The Center offers numerous opportunities for spiritual growth, including retreats, volunteer activities, classes, yoga, devotional singing, and meditation.
International Yoga day was celebrated in Amma’s presence and she instructed the assembled devotees by guiding everyone assembled in meditation and then through a set of simple yoga stretches.
On the first day, local devotees put on cultural performances including traditional Indian dances as well as a celebratory dance welcoming Amma. Children of the local Amrita Bala Kendra also put on a play. At the end of the first program, Amma sang a bhajan before leaving the stage.
In her address to the assembled crowd, Amma reflected on the need to cultivate an intention to grow spiritually as w move through life: “There are two ways in which one can grow: growing old and growing growing up. Growing old happens naturally, without any effort on our part. Human beings, animals and all other living beings grow in this way. Growing up, however, is unique to human beings. Growing old is a journey towards death; growing up and gaining maturity is a journey towards immortality. It is an inner process. Spiritual knowledge illuminates the path of this journey.”
Just before the Atma Puja for World Peace, a small ceremony was held honoring Amma’s 30th visit to the US. Balan Nair welcomed Amma while Dr. and Mrs. Potti garlanded Amma on behalf of all those who had first met Amma in Chicago 30 years ago. Amma then blessed two saplings which will be planted on the grounds of the Chicago Ashram.