THE DIVINE LIFE OF BHAGAVATI SRI SRI SRI VIJAYESWARI DEVI
Sri Vijayeswari Devi’s birth was prophesied by the great gavan Sri Ramana Maharishi, who predicted that Amma’s mother would give birth to Thai—The Divine Mother. True to prophecy,
Her Holiness was born in the traditional South India of 1958 on the most holy day of Vijayadasami (the day of Victory). Sri Vijayeswari Devi spent a childhood immersed in an atmosphere of prayer and worship.
As she grew into a young woman, Sri Vijayeswari Devi felt an inner urge to begin spending more and more time absorbed in prayer and meditation. Finally in the year 1980, at the tender age of 21, Amma left the comfort and security of her parents’ home and traveled by foot to the remote and sacred Penusila Forest of the Nellore District, Andhra Pradesh. She remained there in relative isolation for over 10 years, living an austere life dedicated to meditation with the intent of uplifting humanity and bringing peace to the world.
Amma’s Humanitarian Work
Upon emerging from the inward phase of her life in the forest, Amma began an external mission of providing relief to the suffering and underprivileged. One of Her Holiness’s earliest wishes was to help the hundreds of thousands of villagers living in the regions surrounding the Penusila Forest—families oppressed by abject poverty, lacking proper medical care, and without the basic needs of life.
In this environment of pervasive poverty, it is not uncommon to see children as young as four or five laboring under the unrelenting Indian sun, harvesting rice,hauling building materials or performing other menial duties. As a means of putting a permanent end to the vicious cycle of child labor that has plagued family afterfamily for generations, Amma inaugurated numerous Free Schools in 1994. Today over 650 students are spending their days inside of a classroom rather than toiling away in hot fields or rice paddies. Amma’s students receive uniforms, text books, school supplies, learning materials and a quality education—including math, science, social studies,
the arts, learning to read and write English, Hindi (India’s national language), Telugu (their native tongue)—all free of cost.
Moreover, Amma’s free schools produce top-ranking students in a state that boasts a population of over 84 million people, a fact that can be attributed to the students’ focus on yoga and meditation within their curriculum. At the conclusion of their schooling, students have the option of continuing their education at Amma’s degree college, located in the Nellore District of Andhra Pradesh.