Ammachi, the hugging saint or known only as Amma, was in Coralville for a few days. This was the second time I saw Amma.
When I arrived yesterday a line had formed for the evening program. I wandered to the back trying to figure out where the end was. A woman approached me and asked if I was a “first timer.” I said I was not but I didn’t know what I was doing. She had a yellow ribbon made into a necklace and offered it to me saying, “do you want to be one of the first 12 to see Amma?” “Yes!” She took me to the front of the line. Because I was at the front I was very close to Amma during the program. It included Amma speaking, then singing ( or chanting- what is the official difference?) and meditation. I was one of the first to receive “darshan“, my hug. She really is incredible. And I felt so much love even before I got my hug that after my hug I was dizzy with a warm honey buzz all over. I stepped away and immediately someone sat me down closer to Amma than I was before! I was sat in what I think is called the “star gazer area”. I thought, wow! Everything is really working out for me!
After a good long time of soaking up Amma, I went to find food. No sooner had I left the area I heard my name being called. I was asked if I wanted to help with the prasad. I said yes of course! What a roll I was on. But what is prasad? After an explanation and directions on how to do it, I was in line to hand the chocolate kisses and flower petals to Amma so she could pass them out after she hugged each person.
This ended around 1am and I went to my hotel room upstairs. I fell fast asleep and dreamed about a large picture screen and something moving out of its way so I could, “see the big picture.” I woke and went downstairs to get a token (a marker for the line to receive a hug) for the morning program. I was just in time, of course. I took my token back upstairs with my breakfast, talked to my daughter and husband, did yoga, showered and made it down stairs just as my group was lining up. Again, I say of course!
As I was leaving today I was stopped by a woman who was in line with me last year to ask Amma a question. She reminded me that she too had been going through chemo at the time. We laughed at our growing hair. She is still fighting cancer. I am not. It hit me then what this last 24 hours had been to me. It is my luck. I walked two steps and was reminded of another person who was in line with us to ask Amma a question. He died not to long ago. My heart goes out to his loved ones. My heart also goes out to my friend who is still fighting. Keep it up! You are an inspiration! Thank-you, thank-you, thank-you.
Thank-you to everyone who is reading this and has read my posts for the last two years. Having witnesses is important, it has helped so much. Thank you to my loved ones and community. I am truly blessed. Thank-you!