Amritapuri (Kerala), Sep 25 IANS | 12 months ago

Amrita University in Kerala is launching Thursday a centre for spiritual studies at its campus in Kollam district, with the aim of strengthening and deepening India's rich spiritual traditions, a spokesperson said.


The centre will be officially launched at Amritapuri Thursday as part of the three-day Amritavarsham 60, the 60th birthday celebrations of Mata Amritanandamayi, also known as the "hugging saint". Celebrations of the birthday began Wednesday, and are organised by the Mata Amritanandamayi Math (MAM).

The new centre will engage in academic research and extension activities focused on spiritual, social and cultural development and awareness, the MAM spokesperson said.

It will also promote and institutionalise selfless service-oriented education, and give voice to Amma's universal message, "Love and serve".

Apart from academic and research collaborations, the centre will engage in collaboration with similar centres of repute in other parts of the world, to offer study programmes in Sanatana Dharma, spirituality and culture at post-graduate and doctoral levels.

Research activities into spiritual subjects will include the study of Sanskrit and scriptures, arts, science, technology, literature and astrology, the spokesperson said.

Other proposed activities include documentation, dissemination and spread of the universal message of Amma's life and teaching.

One area of focus will be what Amma has termed "Vishwamatrutvam" -- the quality of viewing every aspect of the universe as a mother views her child, and treating all aspects of creation with the love, patience, compassion and selflessness that a mother shows her children.

The centre will also research Amma's charitable, humanitarian and social programmes, to assess their impact.

Teaching of meditation and yoga through systems followed at the math, like Integrated Amrita Meditation Technique and Amrita Yoga, will also be conducted at the centre, the spokesperson said.

The centre will seek to bridge the gap between Eastern and Western knowledge systems, and institutionalise selfless service activities as part of its credit-based curriculum.

The Amrita University, since its 2003 inception, has focused on research and development of low-cost practical innovations that will help uplift the poor and needy.

(Posted on 26-09-2013)