I went to see Amma on the first day of her three day stopover in London at Alexandra Place this was my first time. I wanted to know more about this women and why she had a large following including world leaders and celebrities. I had been following Amma and all her charity work that she has being doing and hearing so many stories about this women who gives hugs and truly wanted to experience all this for myself on my spiritual journey of discovery.
I arrived at 6.00pm so glad I did had I known what to expect I would have been here earlier as there was so many people the queues went on for miles all here to see this one lady. I felt quiet overwhelmed by the amount of people here to see Amma, I am talking from children, babies, the elderly, people with disabilities but the most amazing thing to see was people from so many different religions and backgrounds, there was this truly wonderful aurora that had brought us all together through spirituality, there was no religion or difference in one being to the other we were all one!! Was that Amma’s intention I wondered.
This was shown as I sat down in the queue talking to people everyone was on such a high, eager to experience the evening but I wanted to know why they were here what they all expected from this evening. It came down to the same as me Spiritual journey and teachings they all just like me wanted to find that path that journey and experience the love and devotion of one women who is giving so much of herself selflessly for others. There were so many people who had been following Amma’s journey around the world and had been to her ashram in India hearing their stories their experiences it showed the love the happiness the joy in their eyes from what they had experienced and the love and admiration they had for Amma they all felt that being in her presence had changed their lives. Ok was keeping my mind open!!
As the doors to the great hall opened slowly we were all ushered in and given tokens for darshna, and shown to our seats I was pleased that I had a more or less front row seat with a good view my token was K1 which meant I would have a long wait tonight to receive my darshna. As Amma was not expected until 7.30pm I had time to wonder around there were food stalls selling delicious south Indian food so I indulged and then I wondered the stalls selling gifts, all profits go the organisations that Amma supports so all for a good cause. A beautiful bracelet with the Sanskrit wording “Om namah shivaya” caught my eye just had to have it the lady behind the counter told me when you go to get your darshna Amma will bless the bracelet for you, how wonderful I thought! Sitting in my seat I took a good look around amazed at how many people had come I felt overwhelmed, the volunteers where absolutely wonderful they would come over and talked you through what to expect throughout the night asking if you had any questions of course I did! They were more than pleased to help.
Amma arrived at little after 7.30pm it was truly a wonderful sight I don’t know what I expected but seeing her with the most biggest brightest smile on her face hi- fiving her way to the stage I felt the warmth radiation throughout the room. Amma was welcomed onstage by three dignitaries Lord Andrew Stone of the House of Lords, Ms. Scilla Elworthy peace activist and founder Rising Women, Rising World, the Oxford Research Group and Peace Direct and Academy Award-winning film director Alfonso Cuarón.
After Amma address the crowd by giving a truly inspirational spiritual talk, it really dawned on me just how much this one women had done and what she still was aspiring to conquer through her love and devotion, she is not just trying to conquer one disease in this world but the whole package from conservation to humanitarian work her list is endless. What I took form her speech was it matter what you do and what you give, however small and insignificant it may feel it’s a start, but it’s also how you deliver it. For me I would have to say with love, compassion and forgiveness.
After her talk devotional sing started you do not have to understand the language it’s the chanting the music it was hypnotic and calming everyone in the hall swayed and chanted with the beat Amma sang with so much passion it was truly beautiful and mesmerizing. Meditation followed being in a room with so many people I thought to myself well there is no way I will be able to meditate but after the singing meditation was blissful I felt elevated and in my own self truly amazing. Waiting for darshna I sat back thinking to myself what just happened I felt so calm but emotional at the same time. The wait was long into the early hours of the morning but no one seemed to care or be in hurry we all sat around talking or quietly just enjoying the moment. My turn came to go on stage wow the emotions and questions going on in my mind what was I going to experience with one hug?? I was told by one of the volunteers to kneel down next to Amma to receive my darshna Amma reached out for me and embraced me warmth, calmness, peace, my mind went blank there was nothing there I felt like I was floating she whispered a blessing in my ear I did not understand it but I do not want to as whatever it was made an emotional gate open up in me. As I got up to leave she took me back into her embrace and whispered some more before handing me a sweet and rose petal. As I moved on and sat on the stage next to her I watched her embrace all the other hundreds of people, I felt a tear escape, I took a deep breath and let a long one out I felt release, I felt whole, I felt peace deep within me, I felt so much happiness so much energy I did not want to leave but leave I must as I had a long journey ahead of me.
Taking one last look at Amma I took a deep breath and smiled yes this was truly an amazing women I had read so much about her but to truly know what others have felt I am so glad to have experienced this for myself, my discovery for me! This women has given so much she will sit there and not leave until she had hugged each and everyone who has come to see her giving each one her blessing. She has a big heart with so much compassion. So many people in this society do not want to display physical emotions, but a hug speaks a thousand words just a small jester will light up a face bringing peace and joy with it.
To reflect what have I learnt if anything from this experiences well yes change starts within oneself no matter how small, try to make the world a better place, see others, it’s not “me” it should be “we”, show compassion, forgive, give and you will receive peace, spread love and joy. I intend to follow up on more of Amma’s teaching and hopefully one day will be able to visit her ashram in India.
Now for the long journey home and to make those small changes.
“Within you, immense knowledge is waiting for your permission to unfold. But it won’t happen unless you allow it to. — Amma”
“My Dream:- A vision of a world in which women and men progress together, a world in which all men respect the fact that, like the two wings of a bird, women and men are of equal value.” – Amma
“My Desire: Everyone in the world should be able to sleep without fear, at least for one night. Everyone should be able to eat to his fill, at least for one day. There should be at least one day when hospitals see no one admitted due to violence”. – Amma