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Her job is to hug…

November 22, 2008

There is a woman in India whose life’s work it is to hug people – that is it – that is what she does. Simply to hug. Wow. And it is estimated that she has hugged over 30 million people in 30 years. Seriously – Wow. Her name is Mata Amritanandamayi Math and, thankfully, they call her Amma.


She doesn’t ask for a thing for a hug – and yet, people donate money to her causes willingly. She is said to have donated over 23 million dollars to tsunami relief, one million dollars to Hurricane Katrina relief, and funds so that over 100,000 homes could be built. Dang! (source Wikipedia)

I love hugs too – but, if Mr. W has just mowed the lawn and comes in all sweaty looking for affection – not so much. And I love him – a lot. But ick. But not that Amma, she just hugs, anyone, everyone. God love her!

bee-with-flower1Once 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.”  (This was quoted from

That is really a beautiful thing. And it would never happen in America. We might have come far enough to elect a black President  – but we are not likely to celebrate someone who just walks around hugging complete strangers. Lock her up – she’s a nut – doesn’t she know I just ironed this shirt – would be our battle cry. She would not stand a chance.

I am looking forward to living in a country that puts a “hugger” on an equal playing field with celebrities. She is famous and people flock to her. This fascinates me and I hope to meet hug her very soon.

(P.S. Thanks Mary P. for enlightening me!)

One Comment leave one →
  1. CanIRemainUnknownPl permalink
    February 24, 2009 1:47 pm

    Her name
    amrit literally means nectar but has a religious significance . You can equate it to the sacred water used for baptism. Anybody who drinks amrit reaches nirvana.
    ananda means joy
    mayi simply means full of, as in this case full of joy from the amrit.
    Most Indian names can be divided into parts and that would make it easier for you to pronounce them and remember them.
    Math is a place of religioius study and research and generally has temples etc in there. You can equate it to a HQ of a religious sect something like Vatican has a Math. (Math is not pronounced as math as in mathematics but the th is pronounced as the T in tomato.

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