Amma is in Town this Week, Join Me Tuesday Morning!

So here's my story, I have waited up to 15 hours to get my hug. Who's Amma? Mata Amritanandannayi Devi or Amma is an Indian Saint. I think of her as the Indian Mother Teresa. She is known for her work with the needy in India. She is also know for her hugs and is also known as the “Hugging Saint.”

Coach Steve Ilg, my coach, asked me to see her in 2004. I had no idea of what I was getting into. The first time I waited 4 hours to get a hug. As Coach Ilg said, “That was a World Class Hug wasn't it?” How could it not be, I had to wait 4 hours to get my first hug.

Amma found a place in my heart. Next, I read her biography. I love reading stories about inspiring people. I was moved and since then I have only missed her once, last year. She only comes to LA once a year. I will not make that mistake again

I've been planning this for weeks with Monday and Tuesday set aside to see which would work best so I could still coach as many people as possible. Now it is official, I am going Tuesday morning. My plan is to get there around 8:30 AM with tokens being passed out at 9 AM. You have to get a token to get a hug.

If you want to meet me there or ride with me Email Coach Steve It will take all morning into the afternoon. Who knows when we'll get back yet I have to ride with Derek at 7 PM, so we will be back by then at the latest. And, you don't need food, they serve a fantastic vegetarian meal for under $10. More details below.

Radisson Hotel at Los Angeles Airport 6225 West Century Blvd Los Angeles, CA 90045 starting at 10:00 AM for Darshan

Women, please dress conservatively, wear shoes you don't mind putting on a rack since you are barefoot in the main room. I we perform a couple hours of “Seva” or service, washing pots and pans or whatever they need me to do. I will also get my malas blessed and may ask for a mantra.

I am getting pumped up for this. Join me, this is powerful spiritual stuff, even for this Catholic boy.

More on Amma from her web site,

“On the morning of the 27th of September 1953, in a small poor fishing village, Parayakadavu in the Quilon district of Kerala, a baby girl was born. Her parents gave her the name Sudhamani. She came into this world not in tears as babies usually do, but with a beaming smile on her face, as if prophesying the joy and bliss she was to bring to the world.

Sudhamani spent the years of her childhood and teens immersed in intense spiritual practices in order to present a living example for the world. Even as a small child, she could often be found absorbed in deep meditation, totally oblivious of her surroundings. By the age of five, she had already begun composing devotional songs laden with deep mystical insight.

Another quality that was clearly manifest in Sudhamani from this tender age was her love and compassion toward her fellow human beings. Though only a child, Sudhamani did whatever she could to ease the suffering of her elderly neighbors. She washed their clothes, bathed them and even brought them food and clothing from her own home. This habit of giving away things from her family’s house landed her in deep trouble. However, no amount physical abuse or punishment could stop the expression of her inborn compassion. She later said, ” An unbroken stream of Love flows from me towards all beings in the cosmos. That is my inborn nature.”

‘Amma’ as she is known all over the world today, has inspired and started innumerable humanitarian services. She has earned international recognition for her outstanding contributions to the world community. She is recognized as an extraordinary spiritual leader by the United Nations and by the people all over the world.

Though Amma makes no claims herself, those who watch her closely notice that she is the greatest example of her teaching. Her disciples and believers imbibe her teachings by just watching her.

For the past 35 years Amma has dedicated her life to the uplifting of suffering humanity through the simplest of gestures – an embrace. In this intimate manner Amma had blessed and consoled more than 25 million people throughout the world.

When someone asked Amma why she receives every person who comes to her in a loving embrace Amma replied, “ If you ask the river, why do you flow? what can it say?”

Amma spends most of her waking hours receiving the distressed and all who come to her for comfort, day after day without a break.

Once a press reporter asked Amma how was it possible for her to embrace each and every one in the same loving way, even if they were diseased or unpleasant. Amma replied, “ When a bee hovers over a garden of varied flowers, what it beholds is not the difference between the flowers but the honey within them. Similarly Amma sees the same Supreme Self in each and every one.” As Dr. Jane Goodall, while presenting Amma with the 2002 Gandhi-King Award for Non-violence said, ” She stands here in front of us. God’s love in a human body.”

Hug Focused, Steve Mackel – Humble Hugee

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One Response to “Amma is in Town this Week, Join Me Tuesday Morning!”

  1. lil 1/2 pint on June 16th, 2009

    Steve, I’m anxious to hear, how did it go?