Global News

Feeling the Love in Melbourne, 2019

Sandown Racecourse, Melbourne

Melbourne, VIC, Australia, April 16th -20th , 2019

Amma held two days of public programs, a retreat, and a special program for World Peace followed by Devi Bhava at the Sandown Racecourse in Melbourne, VIC, Australia on April 16th-20th, 2019.

The Melbourne programs are usually one of the most relaxed stops on the Australian Tour. In Melbourne, the weather is picture-perfect and the programs are very peaceful and joyful.

James Conquest, representative of MA Center in Australia, welcomed everyone to the programs. Noting that Amma has been coming to Australia for 30 years, the crowd greeted Amma in special gesture by waving thousands of small Australian flags in a sea of appreciation, love and gratitude.

Mr. Conquest then introduced the special guests, Ms. Sonya Kilkenny, MP. State Member for Carrum; and Julian Hill, MP Federal Parliament Member for Bruce, Victoria and Deputy Chair of the Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit.

Julian Hill, MP Federal Parliament Member for Bruce welcoming Amma to the country addressed the devotees:

"Thank you everyone for inviting me to be here and to share a few words of welcome, most importantly welcome to Amma. I would also like to pay my respects to the elders past and present, and to celebrate the modern multi-cultural Australia. I believe that we must also honor the aboriginal people who belong to the oldest civilization of 60,000 years in human history.

I have been in this room for so many events, but I can say tonight that it has the most beautiful energy of any event that I have been to. We can feel the love between you, Amma, and the people here.  Thank you for your message for over thirty years of love and life of service and devotion. I think the message that you bring transcends any one single belief system - that self realization through love and service and devotion and compassion to other human beings is so welcome anywhere at any time, particularly here, now in Australia.  Thank you for sharing your message of love with us and being here with us again for the 30th year."

Sonya Kilkenny, MP. State Member for Carrum also paying respect to Amma and spoke these words:

“What an honour to welcome Amma once again to Victoria.  To Amma, on behalf of the Premier of Victoria, and the Minister of Multicultural Affairs and the Victorian government, I extend to you the very warmest of welcomes.  You are a true fountain of love and compassion, inspiring millions to follow in your footsteps most notably through the creation of Embracing the World, and teaching us that each of us has a responsibility to lend a helping hand to those in need."

On her way out of the program hall, Amma always watches the birds that fly in large groups above the sprawling racecourse lawns. Her eyes follow those birds and it always seems like she is in silent communication with them.

On the outside it seems like people come, get a hug and go. If we ever catch a conversation with some of the people, we will be surprised to discover the stories of healing, love and support that Amma provides silently to the thousands that come to her arms for solace. One such story is that of a young Mother who had traumatic experiences with her unwell child who had to be admitted in rehab. Amma gave her much love and support that she felt courage to believe that her child will be ok. She was almost losing all hope and Amma came to her rescue. This young mother followed Amma to Sunshine Coast program and was seen smiling and telling her friends, “ My son is doing much better!”. Stories like this happen every moment around Amma. They are like the sparks of joy that are spread around Amma’s presence and even though we may not be aware of all the stories, the joy in the air is evident.

Retreat was well attended by over 750 people. It was a celebration of meditation, music, yoga, dinner with Amma, Question and Answer with Amma and hours and hours of darshan…