Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham
Amrita Yoga offers retreats in Amritapuri, the ashram (spiritual center) of Amma. She is known worldwide as the “Hugging Saint”. Amritapuri is her birthplace and main ashram. It is located in a remote fishing village in the state of Kerala in South India.
In the beginning the ashram was Amma’s family’s home. The handful of brahmacharis and brahmacharinis (monks and nuns) slept on the sand under the stars. Amma had a small hut built next to her parents’ house. It doubled as a kitchen and sleeping quarters for Amma and the earliest female disciples. Darshan, Amma’s blessing and embrace, took place in the converted family cowshed. This small temple, known as the Kalari, exists today. It is used for conducting pujas and homas (Vedic rituals).
Amritapuri grew from this humble beginning into a vibrant international community. It is the living example of the Indian ideal “the whole world is one family” (vasudhaiva kutumbakam). It’s now the spiritual home for 3,500 monastic disciples and devotees from around the world. Regardless of the size, the ashram is filled with Amma’s presence; her hand is in each individual’s inner growth.
Nearby is Amrita University, Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham which Amma founded. Her vision is to provide value-based education through the synthesis of science and spirituality. Amrita University is a multi-campus, multi-disciplinary research university. It includes schools of Arts and Sciences, Ayurveda, Biotechnology, Business, Engineering, Medicine, and Social Work. Accredited ‘A’ by NAAC, it ranks as one of the best private research universities in India.