Mata Amritanandamayi Devi is an Indian religious Hindu chief, humanitarian, and guru who’s worshipped as ‘the cuddling saint’ by her followers.
Mata Amritanandamayi Devi was born as Sudhamani Idamannel on Sunday, 27 September 1953 (age 69 years; as of 2022) in Alappad Panchayat in Karunagappally, Kollam District, State of Travancore-Cochin (now in Kerala), India. When she was born, not like different infants, she had a beaming smile on her face, which is why she was given the identify ‘Sudhamani.’ The identify signifies the Ambrosial jewel. When Sudhamani was 5 years outdated, she helped the poor and needy on the best way to high school, which stood the rationale why she was all the time late for sophistication. In 1962, her mom fell sick and the 9-year-old was withdrawn from her college with the intention to assist with family chores and care for her siblings. On the age of 15, Sudhamani obtained engaged in family chores at her mom’s elder sister’s home and later, she was despatched to her uncle’s home in Karunagapally. Regardless of the change of environment, her intentions have all the time stayed the identical. She confronted the wrath of her kinfolk for giving out her household’s rice to the poor.
Top (approx.): 5′ 4″
Hair Color: Salt & Pepper
Eye Color: Brown
Sudhamani was born to a household of lower-caste fishermen from Kerala, India.
Mother and father & Siblings
Her father, Sri Sugunanandan Idamannel, offered fish to make a residing. The fishmonger used to carry out Kathakali throughout his younger days. On 22 March 2010, he handed away. Sugunanandan’s physique was cremated on the premises of his Idamannel home close to the Amritapuri ashram in Kollam, Kerala.
Her mom, Damayanti Amma, led a easy residing lifetime of selfless service and an inclined love for nature. On 22 September 2022, she handed away on the age of 97.
Amritanandamayi is the third little one amongst seven brothers and sisters. Amma’s elder brother, Subhakan, was towards her divine bhavas. Based on Indian tradition, it’s thought-about inappropriate for a woman to be hugging older males or folks of a unique caste. Due to this, Subhakan was stuffed with disgrace that he tried to stab Amma to loss of life. He dedicated suicide within the June of 1978. Amma’s older sister, Kasturi Aamma, celebrated her seventieth birthday on 1 July 2018. Amma has two youthful sisters named Sajini and Sugunamma, and three youthful brothers named Sathish Kumar, Sudhir Kumar, and Suresh Kumar.
Husband & Kids
Based on her official web site, Amritanandamayi refused to marry. As she refers to calling herself “Amma,” which implies ‘mom,’ she considers her devotees/followers as her little children.
She follows Hinduism. On the age of 4, Kunju Sudhamani took refuge in Lord Krishna. She spent hours meditating and chanting Krishna’s identify. She saved his photograph within the pocket of her shirt. She perpetually sang his prayers and imagined that each one the work she did was for him solely. She imagined Lord Krishna arriving on the doorstep, each time she used to brush the yard. She additionally imagined that Krishna would seem as a visitor on the desk whereas she cooked meals. She by no means resented her duties, nor the abuse her household gave her however solely prayed to be given extra of the Lord’s work.
Amma resides at The Mata Amritanandamayi Math in Amritapuri (initially referred to as Parayakadavu), a village of Karunagappally, Kollam, Kerala (India).
God-realization and enlightenment
Throughout this era, she used to go door-to-door gathering meals scraps from the neighbours for the livestock, which was owned by her household. After seeing the folks undergo, the 9-year-old Amritanandamayi was deeply affected, so, she obtained herself engaged in charity work. She used to take meals and garments from her home and distribute them amongst these in want. For doing so, she was typically scolded and punished by her household, who was not rich both. Speaking about her childhood reminiscences, she preached,
Whether it is one man’s karma to undergo, isn’t it our dharma (responsibility) to assist ease his struggling and ache?”
In 1970, she began studying to tailor at a Christian Establishment, which was connected to a Church. She continued it for 3 years. On the church, Amritanandamayi used to meditate. Seeing her, the priest of the church was extremely impressed. He predicted that she would come up as an awesome girl sooner or later. When Amma was 21 years outdated, she manifested her state of God-realization and enlightenment. By the point Amma turned 27, she turned her house in Kerala right into a religious headquarter. Then, on the age of 32, she established round 20 ashram branches all through India and overseas. Amma was 33 years outdated when she accepted the invitation from her devotees, residing in USA and Europe, for they craved her darshan.
For the reason that age of twenty-two, Amritanandamayi has been repeatedly comforting folks by her hugs, which is why she was deemed the ‘hugging saint’ by these devotees. Individuals from all around the world crave seven seconds of serotonin. She spends round 10-14 hours a day, assembly and hugging individuals who come to see her. Based on her official web site, she has embraced greater than 34 million folks all through the world for over 30 years. Whereas speaking about how this started, Amritanandamayi mentioned,
Individuals used to come back and inform [me] their troubles. They’d cry and I might wipe their tears. Once they fell weeping into my lap, I used to hug them. Then the subsequent particular person too needed it… And so the behavior picked up.”
In 1993, she served as President of the Centenary Parliament of World Religions in Chicago, USA. Amma can be a member of the Elijah Interfaith Institute Board of World Non secular Leaders.
The Mata Amritanandamayi Math (MAM)
The Mata Amritanandamayi Math is a global charitable group whose fundamental goal is the religious and materials upliftment of humankind. Based by Mata Amritanandamayi, Math was formally registered on sixth Could 1981. Together with its sister group, the Mata Amritanandamayi Mission Belief, MAM manoeuvres charitable work together with healthcare for the poor, catastrophe reduction, environmental applications, preventing starvation, and academic scholarships for underprivileged kids. Aside from this, it additionally runs the seven-campus college, Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, 90 chains of English medium CBSE faculties named Amrita Vidyalayam, and lessons in yoga, meditation, and Sanskrit. A donation of $1 million (about Rs. 4.5 crores) in direction of the reduction and rehabilitation of 2019 tsunami victims in Japan was made by Amma’s group.
The Metropolis of Amritapuri
Amritapuri is positioned within the state of Kerala, which is 8 km away from, 29 km away from Kollam, about 110 km north of Thiruvananthapuram, and 120 km south of Kochi. Amritapuri can be the identify by which the situation of the ashram is now identified. Amritapuri is unfold over 100 acres of land and can be the headquarters, and one of many seven campuses of the Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, alias Amrita College. Amritapuri is positioned at a distance of 8 km from Karunagappally in Kerala, which is 117 km from Kochi. Initially, it was Amma’s household home the place she was born and grew up.
Subsequent to this home was a small hut the place feminine disciples used to sleep. Amma’s father transformed the cowshed right into a small temple, the place the devotees would come for her darshan. Amma’s first temple, referred to as Kalari, is now used for conducting prayers.
Now, Amma’s house is the primary ashram to hundreds of devotees who apply religious sadhana resembling meditation, mantra japa, devotional singing, and learning shastras together with Bhagavad Gita and Upanishads. This place can be the worldwide headquarters of Mata Amritanandamayi Math.
Amma is concerned in numerous philanthropic actions. The Mata Amritanandamayi Math is the father or mother organisation of a super-speciality hospital named Amrita Institute of Medical Science (AIMS) in Cochin, Kerala, which was inaugurated by the then Prime Minister, Atal Bihari Vajpayee on 17 Could 1998.
She began a hospital named Amrita Hospital in Faridabad, which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 24 August 2022.
The Ashram additionally runs a most cancers hospice in Mumbai and an AIDS care house in Trivandrum. The groups of medical doctors frequently make journeys to distant villages to conduct eye camps and well being consciousness campaigns. Aside from this, she additionally runs different charitable hospitals, that are positioned in Mysore (Karnataka)and Pampa, and Kalpetta in Kerala. Based on her official web site, all of the department hospitals are related to AIMS through a telemedicine satellite tv for pc hyperlink offered by the India House Analysis Group (ISRO).
Mata Amritanandamayi penned many devotional books together with ‘Awaken Kids, ‘Compassion: the Solely Technique to Peace,’ and ‘Could Peace and Happiness Prevail.’ Her total life has been devoted to assuaging the ache of the poor, listening to their woes and providing them comfort. In 2014, she authored a e-book titled ‘The Awakening of Common Motherhood’ through which she talked about how the essence of motherhood just isn’t restricted to ladies who gave delivery. Amma’s books have been revealed by her disciples. In 1975, Amma obtained a imaginative and prescient of Devi Parashakthi. She sang her expertise and the divine commandment she obtained from Devi in her track titled ‘Ananda Veedhi.’
Smiling, She grew to become a Divine Effulgence
And merged in me. My thoughts blossomed,
Bathed within the many-hued mild of divinity
And the occasions of thousands and thousands of years passed by
Rose up inside me. Thenceforth,
Seeing nothing as separate from my very own Self
And merging within the Divine mom
I renounced all sense of enjoyment
Mom informed me to ask folks
To fulfil their human delivery.
Due to this fact I proclaim to the entire world
The elegant fact that She uttered
“oh man, merge in your Self!”
In 1985, Amritapuri ashram’s month-to-month album Matruvani was revealed. As of 2022, Matruvani is revealed in 17 languages, together with 9 Indian languages (Malayalam, Tamil, Kannada, Telugu, Hindi, Marathi, Gujarati, Bengali, and Odiya) and English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Finnish, Greek, and Japanese. Amma tunes bhajans, which she encourages her kids to write down. Her personal bhajan assortment contains songs in 50 languages.
Allegations by Sreeni Pattathanam
In 1985, Kerala-based head of the Indian Rationalist Affiliation, Sreeni Pattathanam, wrote a controversial critique titled Matha Amritanandamayi: Sacred Tales and Realities. The e-book included the allegation about Mata Amma and her disciples to be falsifying all of the miracles of Amritanandamayi. Sreeni additionally wrote concerning the suspicious deaths in and round her ashram and demanded a police investigation. On 9 August 2002, Deshabhimani, a Malayalam newspaper, revealed an identical account, demanding an investigation into the identical deaths Pattathanam discovered suspicious. On 24 September 2002, Deshabhimani formally apologised for publishing an article with the heading “Report that Suspicious Deaths at Amritanandamayi Math Are Rising Was Incorrect.” The article additional said
We now state with conviction that there was nothing suspicious about deaths that occurred within the Math. Among the deaths talked about within the article didn’t even happen on the Math.”
Accused of Bodily Assault
Gail Tredwell is a former disciple of Mata Amma who resided within the ashram for 10 years (from 1989 to 1999). In 2013, she revealed a controversial memoir through which she accused Mata Amma of bodily assaulting her. Based on Gail, she was sexually abused on the ashram the place senior inmates had bodily relations. Mata Amma and the ashram representatives denied these allegations. The Amritanandamayi Math believed that these accusations have been solely part of politics propagated by just a few politicians with ulterior motives.
Awards, Honours, Achievements
- 1993: Hindu Renaissance Award for ‘Hindu of the 12 months’
- 1998: Care & Share Worldwide Humanitarian of the 12 months Award (Chicago)
- 2002: Karma Yogi of the 12 months
- 2002: Gandhi-King Award for Non-Violence by The World Motion for Nonviolence (UN, Geneva)
- 2005: Mahavir Mahatma Award (London)
- 2005: Centenary Legendary Award of the Worldwide Rotarians (Cochin)
- 2006: James Parks Morton Interfaith Award (New York)
- 2006: The Thinker Saint Sri Jnaneswara World Peace Prize (Pune, Maharashtra)
- 2007: Le Prix Cinéma Vérité Award by Cinéma Vérité (Paris)
- 2010: An honorary Doctorate in humane letters from the State College of New York
- 2013: Awarded first Vishwaretna Purskar (Gem of the Phrase Award) by Hindu Parliament (Tiruvananthapuram, India)
- 2018: Felicitated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the biggest contribution to the Authorities of India’s Clear India Marketing campaign Swachh Bharat Mission
- 2019: An honorary Doctorate of Letters from the College of Mysore (Karnataka, India)
As of 2011, her internet value is estimated to be Rs. 1000 crores.
- Amma has been identified to provide darshan for greater than 22 hours with none interruption.
- Apart from hundreds of meditating devotees, cows named Gowri, Shivesh, Shankari, Madhavan, Goda, and Nandi additionally reside in Amritapuri. Amma considers herself a good friend of animals.
- In 1985, Amma’s first biography and teachings in English ‘The Mom of Candy Bliss’ was revealed by Swami Amritaswarupananda Puri, the foremost Sanyasi disciple of Amma.
- In August 2005, Amma was attacked by a 47-year-old man named Pavithran, who hailed from the Northern Palakkad district in Kerala. He was sitting among the many followers, praying and singing, in entrance of Amma in the course of the prayer and bhajan occasion on the Mata’s Vallikkav Ashram in Kerala’s Kollam district. Then, he rushed in direction of her with a knife however was hogged by a gaggle of Amma’s disciples. Whereas speaking about this incident, certainly one of Amma’s disciples named Swami Amritaswarupananda Puri said that Pavithran was of an ‘unstable thoughts.’ Superintendent of police Santhosh Varma shared that the knife-wielding attacker claimed to be a sympathiser of the RSS. Amritanandamayi, who pardoned Pavithran, mentioned,
All those that are born will die sooner or later. I’m going forward retaining this actuality in thoughts. I’ll stick with it. I’ll proceed to provide darshan to the devotees coming right here to fulfill me.”
- In 2005, Jan Kounen, an award-winning filmmaker primarily based in France, filmed a documentary about Amma titled ‘Darshan: The Embrace,’ which was formally chosen for showcasing on the prestigious Cannes Movie Competition in France.
- On 1 August 2012, Mata Amritanandamayi was attacked by a 23-year-old undergraduate from the Nationwide Legislation College in Lucknow named Satnam Singh Maan. He was within the queue, ready for Amma’s hugs when he screamed “Bismillah ar-Rahman ar-Raheem.” Satnam, who was unarmed, attacked Amma’s bodyguards however was overpowered by the devotees. He was later despatched to a psychological asylum, the place he was declared useless after just a few days.
- In 2012, Amma was listed on Watkins’ checklist of the highest 100 most spiritually influential residing folks on the earth. and in 2014, she was thought-about one of many 50 strongest ladies spiritual leaders by The Huffington Submit.
- In 2013, American editor Christina Bellantoni shared her expertise assembly the revered guru in an article titled My Eight Seconds With ‘The Hugging Saint.’ She talked about how Amma fingers out Hershey’s Kisses (chocolate) wrapped in rose petals after each hug.
- In 2014, she visited Vatican metropolis to signal a joint declaration of non secular leaders towards fashionable slavery.
- Many celebrated folks throughout the globe have shared their notes of admiration for the saint. After assembly Amma, the Padma Vibhushan recipient, Khushwant Singh, mentioned,
In all my life, I’ve not met a hotter character than Amma. Even an agnostic like me had nice issue in holding again my tears.”
- After assembly Amma, throughout certainly one of her darshans, NPR Reporter Allison Bryce mentioned,
With nice drive, she took me in her arms and I used to be enveloped in a scent of rose. It was a strong hug, a strong second, actually. Overcome with a profound sense of consolation, readability and calm, I staggered off stage and sat down.”
- Amma’s heartfelt heat hugs have additionally been appreciated by Yolanda King (Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s daughter). Whereas speaking about Amma, she mentioned,
My father and Amma are kindred spirits. Essentially the most profound factor about her is she doesn’t preach from the platform of 1 faith. She touches all people. So Christians love her, Muslims love her, all people loves her.”
- The cuddling Saint is a daily blogger for a religious publication referred to as Talking Tree.
- Amma was as soon as visited by a Leprosy-infected affected person named Dattan. His acute and deep wounds obtained cured over a time period after Amma licked his wounds.