by Karuna Poole

I’ve been coming to Amma’s (Mata Amritanandamayi) ashram in Amritapuri, India each year since January 1990. For many years, it was a land of sand and palm trees. I remember when devotees started bringing other plants to the ashram, but it is only in the last five years or so that the gardens have really expanded. All ashram food waste is now turned into compost and their vermicomposting (worm composting) system changes that compost into an even richer fertilizer. Those products plus a lot of love and effort is turning the ashram grounds into a place of magical beauty. Imagine what our world would look like if all humans worked together to bring about this transformation all over the earth.



  1. Splendid, Karuna!! I am particularly fond of the peachy one. What a beautiful thought you pose. There is so much we (humans) bring here and there, invest our skill set and devising into; but how little of our capability is used to make something more captivating and soul-nourishing through those efforts.

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  2. When I look at photos of the flowers and the ashram itself…that beautiful building that stands today makes me thing this is Oz …the difference is no one is Dorothy when they go there, everyone doesn’t seem to want to come home…they feel at home there and keep going back. When I read some of the books about Amma’s life along with others, the history is also mindboggling . How blessed you and your two children are to be a part of that history as well.

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    1. Yes we are blessed. In the old days I was part of the human chain that carried bricks to the temple as it was being built. I remember sensing that a part of me was in each of those bricks, which meant to me that part of me would stay here even when my body was in Seattle.

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          1. That has been true for the 1970 migrant farm labor stories I’m writing now. It is interesting to see how what I have remembered over the years compares to what I wrote right after the trip. For the most part it is the same although there were some parts that I must have chosen not to write down at the time.

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          2. All the books I purchased at the retreat blend with the time you are referring to in your book. I have to say I also love An autobiography of a yogi; coincidentally, when I had just completed the book I noticed a film on Neflix. The Life of Yogananada.

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