Amma’s Way is the story of a global humanitarian leader

Directed by Anna Agnelli, Amma’s Way – Un abbraccio al mondo is preparing to arrive at the cinema on 2, 3 and 4 May. The documentary tells the life and above all the spiritual figure of Mata Amritanandamayi, a humanitarian leader who, with her famous embrace, has been an example of love, solidarity and compassion for years.

Who is Amma

Defined by many Mahatmas, just like Gandhi, Mata Amritanandamayi prefers to be called simply “Amma”, the “mother”. Born in 1953 in Parayakadavu (now renamed Amritapuri in honor of her), in the state of Kerala, India, Mata showed her vocation for spirituality from an early age. Every day she collects peelings and food scraps to take them to the cows and goats and, on the main road of the village, she comes across the most distressed inhabitants. Seeing them suffering, she decides to hug them.
“I don’t see them as men or women. I don’t see anyone other than myself. A continuous stream of love flows from me to all creation. This is my innate nature. The duty of a doctor is to treat patients. In the same way, my duty is to console those who suffer”.

The embrace will become his symbol, defined by his disciples as a “darshan”, a real connection with the sacred. Faced with the extreme suffering and poverty of others, Amritanandamayi decides to dedicate his life to spirituality, to helping others, regardless of whether he is Hindu, Muslim, Christian or non-believer: his religion is “love” . In fact, he does not ask for particular rituals: his simple gesture creates a sincere and profound bond with the needy. “Amma” thus becomes a spiritual leader famous all over the world: she will welcome into her arms over 39 million people in 35 years of humanitarian commitment without even a single day of rest. And its greatness goes far beyond the iconic embrace of blessing: in 1981 Amma founded Mata Amritanandamayi Math (MAM), an international organization engaged – with the network of ETW (Embracing The World) projects – at the forefront of spiritual activities and more on six continents. Amma’s incredible humanitarian initiatives range from building the largest hospital in all of India to founding a university, from fighting on the ground for women’s emancipation to eco-sustainability and environmental defense to the economic, health, shelter and relief assistance to all populations affected by natural disasters. In short, the strength of Amma’s figure can be seen in the structures and organizations that she builds as much as in the spiritual impact that she has exerted throughout the world for over 45 years.

The trailer

The story of an ever greater reality

Amma’s Way – A hug to the world manages to sum up in a limited time the greatness of what is probably the most beloved spiritual leader in the world. Anna Agnelli’s documentary is in fact intelligently divided into two ideal parts: if initially great space is given to the description of the sentiment, love and spirituality that Amma inspires in her admirers, perhaps leaving the viewer a bit astounded in front of a world so distant, the global importance of his figure emerges in the second part. Speeches by Swami Amritaswarupananda Puri, Swamini Krishnamrita Prana, Swamini Amritajyoti Prana, Swami Shubamritananda Puri, Swami Shantamritananda Puri, Dr. Bhavani Rao, Finnish former Olympic swimmer Matti Rajakyla (Akhilesh), researcher Sreeram Kongeseri and many others are a immersion in the moment of contact with the spiritual “mother”, a sort of attempt to express in words the strength of her embrace, which takes on even more value today, in a period where physical contact is put to the test by the pandemic. Subsequently – as mentioned – more space is dedicated to Amma beyond the iconic embrace, that is, Amma engaged on a humanitarian level with enormous solidarity initiatives spread all over the world, from India to Australia and Switzerland. Especially for those who don’t know her, the weight of Amma’s figure proves to be enormous on a global level, in a struggle for peace that goes far beyond geographical, religious and human borders.

Leaving the only (small) regret of not finding out more about Amma’s childhood and adolescence, about the “journey” that led her to be one of the most important spiritual and humanitarian leaders, Amma’s Way it is therefore a very interesting documentary to learn about the importance of Mata Amritanandamayi and the reality that revolves around her figure.

SCORE: 6.5

Amma’s Way is the story of a global humanitarian leader