Amritakutumbam Yatra: Love Agents Spreading Amma’s Love and Teachings
Amma wants all of her children to become sources of love, always spreading love & compassion, thereby inspiring others to do the same. – AMMA
Amma continually inspires, uplifts, and transforms each one of us through her embrace. Over the years, many of us are blessed to receive many hugs from Amma that have transformed some of her children into love agents spreading her message on love and divine teachings in numerous ways.
Apart from the weekly satsang held at Amma Center KL (of Amriteswari Foundation of Malaysia), a group of devotees have embarked on a new initiative of spreading Amma’s message on love and divine teachings to families at their home base. Once a month, these devotees, in a white van, visit roughly about 9 to 11 homes. Amma’s photo and paduka symbolically represent Amma in this yatra. It is initiated as a whole day program, whereby the van departs in the morning from the center and returns often late at night.
The homes to be visited are finalised 2 weeks before the monthly yatra program. Priority is given to families that are new to or have not met Amma. These families are not expected to make any elaborate preparation, as the group only spend about 45 mins at each home they visit. To date, this group has made four trips; in total, they have visited 42 homes. At each home, this group conducts archana, sings bhajans and shares Amma’s messages. During the session, they also pray out loud for any specific issues the family is facing and subsequently a random quote is read out from the ‘Thought of the Moment’ available at Amma’s official website (www.amritapuri.org). Usually, the participating families do invite their relatives, friends and neighbors to join in the session and therefore a short video clip of Amma is played to the audience to enable them to know more about Amma and her humanitarian activities. After arati, each family is given a souvenir that comprise of a small photo of Amma, a book summarising her teachings, and a tiny bottle of Amma’s theertham (water blessed by Amma during Atma Puja prior to Devi Bhava). As a finale to the monthly yatra, paduka abhishegam is conducted at the last home visited.
Feedback received thus far from the participating families has been very encouraging. Many families have expressed that this yatra have made them feel Amma’s presence at their homes. Most of them burst into tears as Amma’s bhajans are either sung or when the video clip of Amma is played or both. In some homes, the families have also experienced Amma’s fragrance, confirming her divine presence. In many instances, the families have also revealed and shared that the quote usually read after the prayer was directly related to them and was seen as a message from Amma to them. A few of them have also professed that they had dreamt of Amma after the yatra visit, that Amma came to their house again in the same white van. Apart from these families, devotees who have jointly organised the yatra have also expressed to have experienced immense happiness and increasing levels of energy in them as they move from one house to another.
Sweet and bitter experiences are part and parcel of everyone’s life. However, the initiative undertaken by the devotees to reaching out to people at their homes provides a channel for the family members to express themselves with more ease and to get in touch with Amma’s teachings about life. Over and above this, it provides an excellent opportunity for the participating devotees to make a difference by helping other people in need, praying for them, and most importantly, making them feel that they are not alone. This particular group who has embarked on this monthly yatra initiative is all geared to reach out to more and more people and also aims to inspire all Amma devotees to do the same in turn in spreading Amma’s love and teachings.
Amritavarsham 63: Amrita Yatra & Exhibition on Amma’s Humanitarian Works
What makes Amma happy, is to see her children helping others to feel happy. – AMMA
Amma’s Birthday is an occasion that reminds us how fortunate we are. Sharing the ‘good tidings of great joy’ is the natural inclinations of many Amma devotees. All these years, we have been celebrating this special day in the halls, Amma centers and at our homes. This year we decided to move away from the confines of the walls and paraded AMMA in a float procession at the city center of Kuala Lumpur on the 1st October 2016. The whole idea was to herald and introduce Amma to the city folks loudly and colourfully. To complement the parade, we organized an exhibition on Amma’s humanitarian works in the heart of the city for two consecutive days, namely on the 1st and 2nd of October from 9.30am to 10.30pm to showcase what Amma stand for. The float commenced from Sri Sakti Karpaga Vinayagar Temple, Brickfields, KL at 7.30pm. The float – in the form of a boat – sailed through the main streets of Brickfields and halted at temples to pay homage to the presiding deities. Along the way, we sang bhajans and distributed sweets and food packets to commemorate this special occasion. It was all celebration and joy, singing and dancing with the divine Mother all the way.
The Concept and Philosophy of the Float
Amma, the boatwoman sails in the streets of Kuala Lumpur reaching Her children at their backyard. The boatwoman is no ordinary one. Like the Kevata’s and Pandavas ‘boatman’ (kaivartakah) that ferried them across the ocean of samsara, our Amma the boatwoman, arrives in the magnificent boat of yonder. She is the ray of hope for those trapped in the dark night of the ocean. Wait no longer souls who have weathered the darkness of eternity… the astute boatwoman who knows the waters and the inhabitants have arrived. And not just any boat but the limitless infinite ocean liner. Hail, here comes the Mother of the Sea, our own Kanyakumari, don’t miss the boat!
National-Level Guru Purnima 2016 Celebration
The relationship between a sadguru and disciple is incomparable – there is nothing like it. It has a permanent effect on the disciple. – AMMA
Every year, for more than a decade now, Amma’s children gather for a satsang that comprise a pada puja, bhajans and a recital of Amma’s golden message on the special day of Guru Purnima. Being an auspicious day, many cultures worldwide traditionally celebrate this day in remembrance of their gurus. However this year was extra special for Amma’s children in Ipoh. Through Amma’s will and grace, the national Guru Purnima celebration this year was celebrated on 23 July 2016 (Saturday) in Ipoh, a city located centrally between Penang and KL. Devotees from all parts of the country flocked to Ipoh on that full moon day, with only one goal; to celebrate and remember Amma with utmost love and devotion. For most of us, everyday, every moment, deed and thought is spent in dedication to mother. However, this day was special and the atmosphere resonated with positive vibrations as all her children gathered under the same roof to pray for world peace and sing the glorious name of the lord. As much as we try to believe Amma’s presence is not confined to her physical body, one cannot disagree that there is always a sweeter difference when she is around in person. Amma says one cannot get milk from a picture of a cow or taste the sweetness of honey by licking the word honey written on a piece of paper. Likewise one needs to meet Amma to really experience her most loving glances, divine touch and sweet speech. But that day was an exception, the jasmine incense sticks burnt, spreading the fragrance all over the hall and Amma’s peedam (platform Amma sits on) set on the stage as how it is usually when she comes. The air resounded with devotional singing and the hall that was initially just half full, started filling up by passersby who were just attracted by the positive exuberance. The order of the event flowed very smoothly and the event was successful.
That is the second time Ipoh had been given the opportunity to host a guru purnima satsang and are truly grateful for the golden opportunity. The event was only for the evening but preparations begun weeks in advance. Amma says, “where there is love there is no effort.” Devotees of all ages worked hand in hand in making the event a success. Every detail was pedantically dealt with love, as if Amma was truly paying a visit; from the sewing of the cloth that covered her pedam, to vacuuming of carpets and stage arrangements. Amma has yet to visit Ipoh, but this event gave the devotees of the town an opportunity to experience the privilege and love of hosting an event for Amma.
Om Premamrtanandamayyai Nityam Namo Namah
(Adorations to the mother who is full of divine love and immortal bliss, adoration again and again)
24 Hours Prayer Vigil for Peace & Unity
Mother Nature keeps a record of each of our sincere prayers. – AMMA
Amriteswari Foundation of Malaysia organised a 24 hours multi-faith prayer vigil for Peace & Unity. The project was organised in collaboration with the Department of National Unity and Integration (JPNIN), under the Prime Minister’s Department. The prayer vigil commenced on 28 November 2015 at 7.00pm and concluded on 29 November 2015 at 7pm. Based on the merit and importance of the project, our collaborator, JPNIN made a special fund allocation of RM8,684.00 to finance the program.
Prayer vigil involving multi religious groups is first of its kind in Malaysia. Usually, the only interfaith activity commonly organised are forums, with the main objective to promote interfaith cooperation and understanding. AFM proposed that meaningful activity that can complement existing activities should be ventured in a multi-cultural and multi-religious Malaysia. We thus proposed that PRAYER as form of activity with a universal objective to be organised. Prayers with common objective in a common venue can be an avenue for all to understand other religions and their way of worship with respect and appreciation. It can create and foster meaningful understanding among different religious groups. We proposed that all religious groups perform their prayers according to their own religious tenets. By coming together to pray with the common objectives and shedding all our differences, we thus demonstrated that prayers to God Almighty is uniting and not dividing.
Amma organisation provided the venue and all facilities to perform prayers according to their own religious practices. Each of the participating religious groups performed their prayers for one hour and 15 minutes, either by chanting or singing the glory of God. Christian, Buddhist, Sikh, Bahai and Hindus participated in the religious prayers. The sole participating Muslim group was delayed because they lost their way to the venue and only managed to attend the program. All the participating religious groups ensured that the prayers for Peace & Unity are not interrupted and we managed to continue the prayers for 24 hours without any break for the entire period. The prayers concluded with the singing of Malaysian national anthem by all participants.
Addressing the participants after the program, AFM Chairman thanked all the participating organisations for agreeing to come to Amma center to perform their prayers. He said that Amma Herself is a symbol of religious unity and has been tirelessly promoting peace and unity across the globe. He reiterated that for Amma, real peace can only happen with inner transformation at individual level before it expands to communal and national levels. AFM Chairman urged all religious organisations to take the lead to promote peace and unity among the diverse Malaysians and be a model for leaders from political and economic organisations to emulate.
Participating religious groups expressed their appreciation to Amma organisation for initiating the program and requested us to make the program an annual event. The event also introduced Amma and Her work to all religious groups.
Amma Exhibition & Food Stall at St. Anne’s Feast
Our selfless, innocent love is the greatest offering that we can give to the Lord. – AMMA
St. Anne Feast is the biggest Christians gathering in Malaysia and dubbed as among 20 largest pilgrimage of Catholics in the world. It is celebrated at the Church of St. Anne at Bukit Mertajam, Penang on 26th July every year. This year, the weekend celebration was held on 1st & 2nd of August. The occasion draws devotees from around the country and from the region. Catholics from various ethnic background and sizeable Hindus pay homage to the Divine Mother on this auspicious day. Amriteswari Foundation of Malaysia saw this occasion as a good platform to present Amma to the pilgrims. Our main objectives are as follows:
- To introduce Amma’s Humanitarian and Interfaith activities to the pilgrims
- To provide healthy vegetarian food at affordable price for the pilgrims
To achieve the above objectives, AFM organised an exhibition on Amma’s humanitarian and interfaith activities and prepared healthy vegetarian food at very reasonable price by renting a space at the St Anne Feast. AFM was the only non-Christian entity at the St. Anne Feast.
Amma’s exhibition flocked many pilgrims. Amma’s association with the Vatican particularly with Pope Francis was the main attraction among the pilgrims. The scale of Amma’s humanitarian activities draw questions from visitors and curious onlookers. Apart from cooked foods and vegetarian burger, the stall also sold candles of various sizes to be offered to the Divine Mother as offering. The food was cooked and prepared by Amma devotees on site. The stall was in operation for over 40 hours.
For the Amma volunteers at the stall, the Guru Purnima prayers of this year was in the form of action by setting up and preparing the stall for the pilgrims. The project was organised by AFM from Kuala Lumpur and done with the labour of Amma devotees and support from Amma centers from Penang.