Shanta Subba Rao
Magazine : Mother of All
Language : English
Volume Number : 13
Month : October
Issue Number : 4
Year : 2014

The word Amma denotes multitudinous emotions, feelings and thoughts. Generally we associate the qualities of love, affection, tenderness, sympathy, compassion, care, understanding and forgiveness with motherhood. From the moment the mother conceives the child till her departure from the world, her protective instincts work and mostly they work overtime. However much the grownup young man or woman, who is still a child in the eyes of the mother, resents and feels it an interference in their freedom and an insult to the manhood, or womanhood, the mother ceaselessly tries to protect her child from all possible troubles and difficulties real and imaginary. She is ever ready to sacrifice all that she has for the sake of the child. However wicked and trouble some the child may be, even if he were to turn into a murderer, her attitude never changes and her love never decreases. That is why Sri Shankaracharya exhorts ‘there can be a bad son at times, but there can never exist a bad mother:

If a mother with all her limitations can do so much for her own flesh and blood, what need be said of a Divine mother who has nothing but the welfare of her entire creation at heart !!

When I first heard of Jillellamudi Amma way back in 1968-69 I made enquiries about her speciality, from a person who had visited her a number of times. He said, “what can I tell you about Amma. Amma is Amma”. I was rather irritated by this statement which really said nothing. Not until I visited Her with my parents and sister in 1979, had I realized the truth behind the profound statement. Can any one really define the undefinable, explain the inexplicable !!

It is said seeing is believing and in Amma’s case it is absolutely true. Words fail miserably in describing her love, affection, and compassion that she showers on all and sundry that come into her purview.

Very few mothers are demonstrative in their love, though they cherish their children immensely. But Jillellamudi Amma communicates her tenderness, love and compassion in every thought, look, word and deed. Those of us who have seen the documentary on Amma can easily recall and clearly visualize once again the touching scene when Bundar Suri is consoled and comforted by her tender look, her gentle becoming towards her and the soft consoling words that act as an anodyne and the ultimate sanctuary that she bestows on him in her warm lap. This moving episode is not enacted for the benefit of the camera. This incident is only one among the many that take place every day at Jillellamudi. Her kind enquiries to all those that visit her, whether they had coffee, breakfast and lunch show her concern for and interest in everyone alike.

“WHO OJJJ JI!” are the words ever present on her lips. To her we are not visitors coming from different parts of the world, but her own children who have been given adoption to different foster parents. She allows her bounteous grace flow abundantly towards every one, without any discrimination. She does not decry the sins that we commit but indulges every whim fancy of ours. She says, She captivates all our hearts with her ever forgiving nature.

We generally hear from the political platforms the orators waxing eloquently about the tremendous and ceaseless effort we have to put in establishing a casteless society. One need only to come to Jillellamudi to see how easily and effortlessly one can build a society, without caste, color or creed. it is not a society, but a universal family built on love and universal brotherhood. The home in Jillellamudi is called “Andarilllu”. What is true in the case of Goldsmith’s village preacher is doubly true in the case of Amma.

More skill’d to raise the wretched than to rise. His house was known to all the vagrant train, He child their wand’ rings but relieved their pain;

Careless their merits, or their faults to scan, 

His pity gave her charity.

Being the universal mother she does not get piqued by our unruly and sometimes exasperating behavior but pampers us. It may so happen that among those that visit Jillellamudi there may be a few that might come there on a fault finding mission but fools who come to scoff remain to love and be loved.

“పెట్టినా విమర్శించే వాడు బిడ్డ.

విమర్శించినా పెట్టేది, ప్రేమించేది అమ్మే”

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