Saturday, March 05, 2005

No Conflict, No Compromise (D. Willis)

No conflict. No compromise.

That is the ethic and approach of Amma and Appa to social, ecological and economic problems. You approach the women first. Get them on your side. The power of shakti, female divine energy, will carry you far. You approach women partly because this is not about political parties, which men are so quick to become involved with and which suck up resources that could more effectively be used elsewhere. The DMK, the Communists, and others may speak a good line, but end-results are what Krishnammal is really looking for. The men will be brought along later by the women.

The women are also the end-point victims for many of the problems caused by social and economic injustice, including alcohol which Amma and Appa, being good Gandhians, completely oppose. For women there are communal struggles every day, and then the struggles with their own men who may gamble or drink away what little there is. Not all men, of course, but the record is decidedly one-sided.

We notice that Amma is constantly asking women and men wherever we stop about the ownership of the lands we are looking at, especially inquiring about those lands that look to be illegally owned or are lying fallow when they could be used.

And in the end it is about some deeply felt human needs. As Amma told us, “People are attached to me and I to them. Fellowship. It is fellowship they are starving for.” The basic dignity and respect which Amma accords to all people, whatever their age or wherever they come from, follows her belief in the ‘unity of the light’ that ‘the spirit is one.’ “Where is there Poverty?” she says simply, “We will find it.”

There is work to do.

The Other David


Thanks again to David Albert for this opportunity to write some of my comments on my visit to Amma and Appa. I have returned to Madurai and will soon go back to Japan. My final thought: by all means try to support Amma and Appa in whatever way you can.
I would especially encourage you to try to visit LAFTI. It is an arduous journey but you will be rewarded by seeing up close the work of two truly inspired human beings. And you get to see Amma in action. There are many smiles and there is much touching in this land of untouchability.

Poyte vare. Going, I will come (the traditional Tamil greeting when leaving, with hands held together in a gesture of prayer and respect, not a goodbye, because you promise you will always return).


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