June 28, 2015 8:20 AM
Last week, while I was waiting for my hug at the Amma Event, I spent a lot of time just sitting and observing: Observing the people as they interacted with one another (or didn’t); observing the volunteers as they set up the equipment and lubricated the Machine that fed the devotees up to the stage; observing Amma giving one hug after another after another; and, while the chanting was going on, observing the English translations on the big screen above the stage.
It’s the translations of the chanting that really struck me. Over and over the chanting was about Amma as a personification of the Divine. Many of the people attending—and certainly those doing the chanting—believe Amma to be God Incarnate.
This isn’t anything new in most Indian religions, gurus are often considered an incarnation of the Divine, but from my perspective it struck me as both ironical and profoundly sad. … Read more…