New charity projects to define Amma’s 61st birthday

Thursday, Sep 25, 2014,18:32 IST By metrovaartha A A A

An array of developmental initiatives and cultural shows will mark the 61st birthday celebrations of spiritual leader Mata Amritanandamayi tomorrow.
Followers of the spiritual leader around the world will yet again gather at Amritapuri here in big numbers this week on the occasion.
The September 26-27 ‘Amritavarsam61′ will see on its concluding day important announcements, launches and inaugurations of various new charitable projects and technological programmes by the Mata Amritanandamayi Math (MAM) and its allied institutions.
The celebrations in honour of Amma – as the icon is addressed across the globe – will begin tomorrow with cultural programmes being staged by students of various Amrita educational institutions.
MAM’s Amrita Keerthi Puraskar for cultural contributions of excellence will be awarded to its 2014 beneficiary, and a new clutch of the ashram’s publications highlighting Amma’s spiritual teachings will be released.
Another hallmark will be Amma’s conducting of a free marriage ceremony for impoverished couples and distribution of free clothing to the poor.
The main day’s proceedings on September 27 will start with a Sri Guru Padapuja, the ceremonial washing of the guru’s feet. This will be followed by Amma’s annual birthday address. The celebrations will also include Amma’s signature darshan – her personal motherly embrace for each person attending the event.
Revealing these, an MAM spokesperson said today that Amma has been, for more than four decades now, continuously offered her entire life to showing humankind the path to peace, love and harmony. ‘Amma’s mission is one that takes into consideration the entire world community, while at the same time giving importance to the individual,’ he added.
Over the years, Amma’s birthday has become an occasion for thousands of people from all over India and abroad to make an annual pilgrimage to her Amritapuri Ashram in this south Kerala district to have the privilege of celebrating the occasion.
Amma’s birthplace here has become the headquarters of her India-based spiritual and humanitarian organisation, the Mata Amritanandamayi Math (MAM).
The MAM projects have been initiated in response to the needs of poor and needy, who come to unburden their hearts to Amma and cry on her shoulder. Over her life, Amma has by far embraced and comforted nearly 35 million people around the world, prompting the international media to call her ‘The Hugging Saint.’
With her vision of a progressive, self-reliant society, Amma also inspires research groups at Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham – the university founded and managed by the MAM – to engage in projects aimed at the uplift of society. Several of these new projects, which are in various stages of completion, development and deployment, will be announced during the celebrations.
The projects focus on creating immediate societal impact and variously involve significant advances in renewable energy, healthcare technology and ICT-enabled applications.