Living from the Heart
Amma is an example of how to live from the heart. She is a living example of how to live moment to moment in a constant state of supreme happiness. Amma spends every day of her life embracing thousands of people. She wipes away their tears, giving guidance and offering solace to all. She is never tired or annoyed. She is established in a state of unconditional love and pure awareness. How is this possible? Amma shows us the way…
Amma teaches us the language of the heart. She shows that to give love to others you must first find that pure love within. This love is constant and changeless. It does not depend on external conditions. Pure love is the flowering of the Inner Heart. Compassion and forgiveness are its fruits. In such conditions, peace can prevail. She shows us that “world peace” starts with us. Amma is a perfect example of the true benefactor for the world. Her compassion is like a flower that blooms to radiate its beauty and fragrance to all beings.
Amritapuri offers the ideal conditions to practice Amrita Yoga’s philosophy of “Living from the Heart”. The ashram is a community of people striving to embody Amma’s example. It is continuous learning in a spirit of sincere effort. In such an atmosphere everyone is uplifted. Through selfless service, devotees learn to put others’ needs above their own. This is education in compassion which can change society for the good.
Compassion in Action
This community spirit is evident during big spontaneous events. At times, Amma calls for everyone to help with a project. People step out of their normal routines and come to help in whatever capacity needed. Amma is at the lead, showing how to do things, broom in hand! The holy pilgrimage of cleaning a local holy site; Sabrimala, is a huge annual event. Thousands of pilgrims attend and trash accumulates over years and years. Amma agreed to support the government cleanup and 5,000 devotees went to help. They took out a staggering amount of trash: 50,000 bags in a period of 3 days! This incredible endeavor is an example of the power of focused collected effort!
Amritapuri functions because of its volunteers. Everyone contributes to all aspects of the community. They cook, clean, recycle, garden, etc. They perform administrative tasks. Even a visitor staying for one day performs an important task. These practices are a method to put spiritual principles into practice. It is practical Vedanta.
“The beauty and charm of selfless love and service should not die away from the face of the earth. The world should know that a life of dedication is possible, that a life inspired by love and service to humanity is possible.” -AMMA
“Awareness with heart-centered intention” is the motto of Amrita Yoga. Amma has instructed to keep these elements at the core of the program content and training. All of the teaching methods aim to help students connect with their inner heart essence. The mechanical and physical aspects of the body are important. But we cannot ignore the spiritual essence.
An important element of Amrita Yoga is bhava. It is a divine mood that connects us to the core of our being in the practice. The teacher helps us find and invoke this mood in each pose. Visualizing the heart center is an important aspect of Amrita Yoga. Many students have expressed how this connection with the heart has helped them in life.
Living From the Heart
Suguna Dundon attended several retreats at Amritapuri: “One of the most important lessons I’ve learned over my time with Amma is that, whenever I do something from the heart; everything flows. I believe we can achieve anything in life if it comes from our hearts. After completing an Amrita Yoga retreat I feel like hugging everyone I meet, my heart feels so open! Life is easy when we are in our hearts, and to stay in our hearts is the daily challenge.”
Living from the heart brings forth an inner strength. This helps cultivate our innate courage and self confidence. Love breaks all the boundaries that keep us feeling separate from others. It makes us fearless.
Amma says that each one of us is a beautiful and unique expression of the Divine. Each one of us can learn to how access that still center of the heart. We can become established in the heart in everything we do.