Home' Nova National : NOVA NATIONAL MARCH 12 Contents Amma teaches that the divine exists within everything,
sentient and insentient. Realizing this truth is
the essence of spirituality -- the means to end all
suffering. Amma s teachings are universal. Whenever
she is asked about her religion, she replies that her
religion is love. She does not ask anyone to believe in
God or to change their faith, but only to enquire into
their own real nature and to believe in themselves.
Amma s tireless spirit of dedication to
uplifting others has resulted a vast network of
charitable activities in India and around the world,
through which people are discovering the deep
sense of peace and inner ful llment that comes
from sel essly serving others. In Australia, Amma s
charitable organization is involved in projects that are
aimed at feeding the homeless, planting trees, and
supporting Aboriginal youth at risk, as well as fund-
raising for a multitude of overseas aid projects.
For Amma, removing the
sorrows of others is as
natural as drying the tears
from her own eyes.
The happiness of others,
this is Amma's happiness...
The security of others,
this is Amma's security...
The rest of others,
this is Amma's rest...
This is Amma's vision...
And it is this vision that
Amma's life is dedicated
to awakening in mankind.
-- Mata Amritanandamayi ('Amma')
Regardless of why they have come, many describe
experiencing a feeling of radiant and unconditional
love in Amma s presence. Some are moved to
tears and feel a cleansing of old wounds, others
experience profound peace and even joy. Regardless
of people s different backgrounds or cultures, the
experiences of the heart show us how similar we
all are -- how we are all seeking love and a direct
experience of our own true nature.
The stories of people who have met Amma are
incredibly powerful, and provide an insight into
the way in which Amma is able to deeply affect
so many people and open so many hearts:
"After Amma s hug, I slowly noticed a change in my
thinking. I started to ask myself new questions like:
What happens to old people who have no money
and no one to care for them? How do the poor care
for themselves and their families? If I had a lot of
money, would that make me happy? I hate to admit
it, but at the time these were new questions for
me -- I d never bothered to give these things much
thought because I was always so focused on myself.
I soon realized that my constant effort to be more
and better was only so I could feel loved.
Yet, through her simple embrace Amma lled my
heart up with love without asking me for anything
in return. She had given it freely and somehow
made me feel like I was inherently deserving of this
love, just for being me. Only after I felt truly and
unconditionally loved in this manner was I able to
shift my focus a little bit away from myself."
-- Julie Cairns, Sydney, Australia
"She seemed so full of sweetness. She was really
giving her best to every person. I watched as Amma
took a drunken old man full of bruises and smelling
like a sewer into her arms as if he were her precious
baby. Next she whispered some wisdom into the ear
of an ancient granny in a wheel chair, who started
crying and laughing at the same time. She played
with little kids as if she knew them from birth."
-- Sami Vaha--Herttua, Helsinki, Finland
"In that moment of Amma s hug, a feeling of
wonderment, love and awe were branded into
my heart. I do not know how to explain it in any
other way. The feelings of warmth, strength, and
unwavering support were tattooed on my inner
being. From that day on, the terrible disruption,
confusion and turmoil in my life began to ease."
-- Jill O'Carroll, Vancouver, Canada
"Even though the hug itself was over too fast
and I had been so very nervous, I felt Amma s
warmth and a feeling of safety and security.
After the hug, I sat with others beside her.
I looked at how she hugged people, whispered
into their ears, smiled at them, accepting everybody
with the same love. It touched me so deeply that
I was suddenly overcome by strong emotional
feelings and burst into tears. I had never felt worthy
enough to be loved. I couldn t stop crying.
After a long time, when I nally did stop, there
was such a feeling of inner puri cation. I felt great
strength and peace inside, quite unlike anything
I had ever experienced before."
-- Susanne Hill, Red Cross Volunteer, Lithuania
"Seeing her receive people, one by one, without a
spark of hesitation and with so much love, as if they
were her very own children, my heart started aching.
My mother had passed away when I was eight years
old and I had always longed for a mother s love, a love
that was unconditional and that accepted me the way
I was, no matter how many mistakes I made."
-- Susanne Wecker-Shivshankar, Munich, Germany
"I have now had Amma s darshan (hug) two times.
My asthma has slowly healed but that is not the
major transformation that Amma has brought
about in me. I am grateful for Amma s hug of love
that returned my breath, the very symbol of life,
but Amma has given me much, much more than
just that. I am slowly learning many lessons in love
and life. Perhaps the little seed that Amma planted
inside me has begun to sprout. I know that a long
road lies ahead before the petals of my heart can
fully open in love but I trust that Amma s guidance
and protection will show the way."
-- Manuela Ceresola, Milan, Italy
"Meeting Amma has changed my life immensely.
Over time I understood that it is the small, small
stones...of rage, guilt, longing, pain, nostalgia...
that form the great wall in our hearts that imprison
the inner child. We trip over these stones every
day in our ignorance. The greatest blessing we
receive from Amma is that she offers to take these
stones from us."
-- Cristina Rodriguez, Barcelona, Spain
"Earlier my understanding of these things had
been purely intellectual. I do not believe that the
understanding was genuine; perhaps I would
just echo words from books. Now after receiving
Amma s hug, I understood with my heart, without
anybody having to explain anything to me. I had
read that nothing was impossible for a person
established in the Self. I now saw that. Amma had
given me so much simply with her hug."
-- Gabriel Lombardi, Buenos Aires, Argentina
"Amma was slowly taking people into her arms and
holding them. She radiated a tangible joy, freshness
and energy. To my surprise, tears started rolling
down my cheeks. This was not the sort of thing
I normally did and I could not understand why I
was crying. Later, I realized that it was because I
was witnessing something beautiful...almost too
beautiful to bear."
-- Michael Sofroniou, Stratford upon Avon, UK
"I have learned from Amma through her teachings
and from her own example that it is not enough
to sit in a particular posture and meditate in order
to grow spiritually. Of course meditation is
necessary to nd peace of mind, but we cannot
stay isolated, forgetting others. We also need to
serve...and share Amma s love and compassion
-- Patricio Hernandez Perez, Pampola, Spain
"When I approached Amma to receive her darshan
(hug), I felt her look penetrate my entire being. As if
I could not hide any feelings or thoughts from her.
Amma embraced me and I felt so deeply loved."
-- Maria Isabel Harker, Bogota, Columbia
"Words can be twisted in many ways, but a direct
experience, a divine touch from inside says all that
there is to say. I am grateful to Amma for setting
straight my mind and heart."
-- Hans de Beer, Netherlands
"Slowly I started to wake up to a feeling of peace and
happiness that I had not known in years. I knew that
Amma knew what I was searching for. I also knew
that she could guide me there. I had never been so
sure in my entire life of anything like this Truth."
-- Ann Louise Feron, Sweden
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