Seed Saving Workshop on September 30

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

We are very excited for the opportunity to again host the internationally respected herbalist, Richo Cech, for another workshop on Saturday, September 30. He is the founder of Horizon Herbs, now known as Strictly Medicinal Seeds, and the author of many popular books about herbs and herbal medicines.

Please see the Chicago ashram website for more information. Click here

seed-saving_workshop_sep_30_2017 crop

Dallas Silent Meditation Retreat — a beautiful beginning ダラスの沈黙瞑想リトリート すばらしい始まり

On Monday, I returned to Chicago after the Dallas AmritaSRI (Silent Retreat Immersion). After such a profound experience, the mind has no words to express what transpired, but perhaps some photos may convey what all of us felt. Hopefully, this will encourage people to come to Chicago in early April for the next one.

月曜日、ダラスのAmrita SRI(沈黙に浸るリトリート)を終えてシカゴに戻りました。とても深い体験だったので、どうお伝えしたらよいか言葉が見つかりませんが、写真をお見せすることでわたしたちが感じたものを何等かお伝えできるのではないかと思います。4月初めにシカゴで参加したいという気持ちになっていただけるかもしれません。

Please click here for a full photo album of the retreat.


After orientation and a short tour of the ashram, the 7-day retreat began with a Mahasudarshana Homa on Sunday night, February 19.


Thereafter, each day began with the pre-dawn glow, then archana, followed by a seated meditation.


Then, the sun greeted us with many a breathtaking sunrise…


Still, before breakfast there was time for gentle Amrita Yoga and a session of IAM-35.


Between breakfast and lunch, there were nature walks, seated meditation sessions (40 minutes), and walking meditation sessions.


Lunch was followed by one hour of silent seva, since karma yoga helps prepare the mind for meditation.


Fortunately, the weather was nice enough that we could conduct the afternoon meditation session behind the main house, overlooking the lake.


Classes were conducted most days from 4:30 pm to 5:30 pm, on a variety of subjects, like Upasana, Karma Yoga, Sound/Bhajan as Meditation, Obstacles to Meditation, and Food & Meditation.


The concluding hours of each day were full of awe-inspiring sunsets, a bhajan session, and more meditation.


Before the retreat concluded, we got to celebrate Mahashivaratri during the regular Dallas Satsang time, which included a talk, abhishekam of the Shivalingam, bhajans and meditation.


Just before the concluding meditation session on Sunday, February 26, we all truly felt Amma’s divine presence when a beautiful, bright white swan flew directly over the meditation hall, over my head, and landed gracefully in the lake.


In the concluding sessions after breakfast on Sunday, the retreatants came out of their vow of silence consciously, after praying for Grace to the god and goddess of speech. There was also an opportunity to share experiences for those who wished.


Then Dayamrita swami arrived to give a talk on “What Next?”, and conduct a Q&A session.


After we expressed our thanks to all who attended and helped put together the retreat, we closed with a prayer, then invited each attendee to receive a token of our appreciation.


Most people stayed for lunch, some even overnight. The Dallas ashram is such a peaceful place, many find it hard to leave…


Deepest gratitude to everyone who came, and especially to the devotees who worked tirelessly for weeks and months to make this event a reality. Most of all, thanks to Amma for her divine guidance and grace, without which none of this would have been possible.


Hope to see lots more of you in Chicago next month!


Calling All Youth  すべての青年たちへの呼びかけ

It has been about 2 1/2 months since I posted, part of which is due to the fact that I have been in India for the past 6 weeks and internet access here has been difficult. But today, I have something really special to share with everyone.


This year, AYUDH will again conduct its annual youth conference, The Ripple Effect. AYUDH, or “Amrita Yuva Dharma Dhara” is the youth wing of Embracing the World, aiming to use the powerful force of young people to perpetuate natural harmony, social justice, and personal empowerment. AYUDH is open to youth between ages 15-30, irrespective of religious, social, and cultural background. It aims to use Embracing the World’s volunteer based methodology to tackle global issues on a massive scale.

MAセンターシカゴでは、今年もAYUDH(アユーダ)の一環として毎年行っている青年会議リトリート『ザ・リップル・イフェクト(波及効果)』を開催します。AYUDHすなわち“Amrita Yuva Dharma Dharaアムリタ・ユーヴァ・ダルマ・ダーラ”は、エンブレイシング・ザ・ワールドの青年部で、若者たちのパワフルな活力を活かして、自然の調和、社会的正義、自己啓発を持続させていくことを目的としています。AYUDHには、その人の宗教、社会的あるいは文化的背景に関係なく、15歳から30歳までの若者なら誰でも参加することができます。エンブレイシング・ザ・ワールドのボランティアを活用して、大きな規模で地球が抱える数々の問題に立ち向かうことをめざしています。

To launch its promotion for The Ripple Effect 2016, AYUDH has posted a nice video with clips and interviews from last year’s youth conference, which was held at MA Center Chicago. Please take a look and share with your friends.


Stay tuned for more details and hope to see lots more new youth at this year’s event!



Mother Nature’s Medicinal Magic — Plant Medicine Workshop 母なる自然の不思議な薬効 ―植物薬ワークショップ

Many of you may already know that in the Spring of 2014 we began growing the medicinal herb echinacea  here in MA Center Chicago. In previous posts, I mentioned how we prepared to seed rougly 1.5 acres of echinacea purpurea, then actually planted it, how it looked after 4 months, how it progressed this spring and early summer, and a post this summer showing how the field went from this…


 to this…これに・・・

… in just 6 weeks! ・・・たった6週間の間に!

Here’s an aerial video of the field at it’s peak this summer, just 15 months after it was planted from seed.


While the plant is indeed beautiful when it explodes into countless bright pink flowers, the medicinal properties are at their highest levels later in the fall. So, we decided to conduct a workshop in early October, called “Mother Nature’s Medicinal Magic — Making Plant Medicine”.

沢山の鮮やかなピンクの花々が一斉に咲きほこる光景はとても美しいのですが、この花が持つ薬効特性が最高値に達するのは秋中旬頃です。私たちは、早速10月の初めに “母なる自然の不思議な薬効―植物薬作り” のワークショップを開催しました。

We were fortunate to have Richo and Jebran Cech from Horizon Herbs in Oregon come out to conduct the workshop. Both of them love Amma deeply and are strong supporters of all the humanitarian activities she has inpsired. Here is Richo in our greenhouse with some local devotees.



The program hall was set up nicely, with the various equipment newly procured for our nascent tincturing endeavor.



Photos from the actual workshop follow, starting with Richo inaugurating the event.




Later, Jebran took a group outside to show them how to dig up echinacea plants for tincture.



Soon, everyone started hands-on learning of the process …



Everyone appreciated how generous and patient Richo and Jebran were in answering their questions.



In the course of the workshop, a few gallons of echinacea and tulasi (holy basil) tincture were prepared, but only the first step. Weeks later, we had to press, filter, bottle, label and seal the tincture, in order to make it available for Amma’s visit in November.


Stay tuned for more posts on this subject…


First IAM 35 Immersion Retreat in MA Center Chicago / MAセンターシカゴ初のアイアム瞑想35集中リトリート

On August 21-23, in Chicago we held our first Integrated Amrita Meditation (IAM) Technique Immersion Retreat. The schedule began with a homa (fire ceremony) on Friday night, and continued until Sunday at 2 pm, giving the participants ample time to immerse themselves both in the technique, as well as the meditative atmosphere here.8月21日から23日、シカゴで初めてのアイアム瞑想集中リトリートを行いました。金曜日夜のホーマ(火の儀式)から始まり、日曜日の午後2時まで、参加者はたっぷり時間をかけて、アイアム瞑想とここでの瞑想的な雰囲気に、浸りました。

Though the program was announced not long before the date, we had quite good participation from as far as New York. リトリートプログラムの告知は、つい最近だったのですが、遠くニューヨークからも参加者を迎え、盛況でした。

IMG_3965The IAM Technique is a powerful way to reconnect with our real center, our inner Self, and thereby experience true joy and peace in life. Born out of Amma’s divine inspiration, this meditation technique is designed to bring about integration in our lives –an integration of body, mind, intellect, and heart.アイアム瞑想法は、わたしたちの本当のセンターである内なる自己とつながるための強力な方法で、それによって人生の真の喜びと安らぎを経験します。アンマの神性なるインスピレーションから生まれたこの瞑想法は、わたしたちの命の統合― 体とマインドと知性とハートの統合をもたらすように作られています。

At the conclusion of the class, each participant received a completion certificate.クラスの締めくくりに参加者一人ひとりが修了証を受け取りました。

IMG_3983IMG_3980IMG_3990We hope to conduct many more such immersion retreats here. The next such event is tentatively scheduled for March 18-20, so please save the date! Details should be posted well in advance at, or you can email to add your name to our contact list for this event.このような集中リトリートをここでもっと開催できればと思っています。次回は、今のところ3月18日から20日を予定していますので、予定を空けておいてください。詳細はゆとりをもってに掲載する予定です。 events.macc@gmail.comにメールでお知らせいただければ次回の開催の連絡リストにお名前を加えさせていただきます。



Fall equinox and Amma’s Birthday Celebration/秋分とアンマのお誕生祭

In an earlier post, I shared the significance of the fall equinox, which this year came on Wednesday, September 23. I have previously shared a photo album of the fall equinox, which is certainly quite captivating.秋分の重要性については以前(2014年10月9日)お話しましたね。今年は、9月23日の水曜日が秋分の日となっています。秋分の日の写真は、以前(2014年9月29日)にも共有させていただきました。うっとりする光景でしたね。

This year, I was able to capture the experience in video format, and the setting was totally different. The sun rose through a thick fog and looked as though it were hanging above an ocean of clouds.今年は、動画のフォーマットで秋分の様子を捉えることができました。セッティングも先回とは全く違っています。今回は、深い霧の中で朝日が昇り、まるで雲の大海の上に浮かんでいるかのような光景です。

Fall equinox sunrise

From higher up, the ashram looked like an island of tranquility amidst the vast ocean of the world…より空高くから見てみると、アシュラムが世界の広い海の只中に浮かぶ静寂の島のように見えました。

Fall equinox sunrise 2

Here is the full video. こちらが動画です。

Now, today is Amma’s 62nd Birthday celebration in Chicago, and soon the festivities will begin in India, as well. It is most certainly a time of supreme joy for anyone who knows and loves Amma. 今日、シカゴではアンマの62歳のお誕生祭です。インドでも、もうすぐお誕生祭が始まります。ですから、アンマを知っていて、アンマを愛している人にとっては、今が至極の喜びの時です。

While we jubilantly partake in the festive mood of this season, let us also not forget the message of the fall equinox, which is “slow down, take pause, and look within.” Only in this more serene state of mind will we truly be able to appreciate the immense blessing of having been able to meet Amma in this lifetime. Hopefully, we will all feel to share the inspiration and spiritual light that we have received from her, by practicing her teachings in our lives.この季節のお祭りムードに歓喜して浸っていても、秋分のメッセージも忘れないようにしましょうね。秋分のメッセージとは、「ゆったりと、一息ついて、内面を見つめる」ことです。心が静寂の状態になった時に初めて、わたしたちは自分の生涯においてアンマに出逢えたことがどんなに大きな恵みであるかを心から実感できます。わたしたち皆が、アンマの教えを日々の生活の中で実践していくことによって、アンマから受け取ったインスピレーションとスピリチュアルな光を分かち合っていくことができますように。

Amma Coming to Chicago Soon!!/アンマがもうすぐシカゴに!

In exactly one week, Amma’s Chicago program will commence. There is a palpable vibration of excitement and suspense pervading MA Center Chicago, and each day the whole ashram is buzzing with activity in preparation of welcoming Amma for her fourth visit. ちょうど1週間でアンマのシカゴプログラムが始まります。MAセンターシカゴに充満しているわくわくどきどきの波動は、目に見えるほどで、アシュラム全体で、皆がアンマの4度目の来訪に向けて、毎日大わらわで忙しく動き回っています。

But there is so much more left to do, and only 6 days left!!まだやることが山積みなのに、あとたったの6日しかありません!

WE NEED YOUR HELP…皆さん、お手伝いお願いします。

There is volunteer service (seva) of all kinds to suit anyone. Please visit our volunteer blog below to find out how you can help us finish all the work before Amma arrives.どなたにもそれぞれに適したあらゆる種類のボランティア(セーヴァ)があります。下のボランティアブログであなたに適したボランティアを選んでいただき、アンマご到着前にすべての作業が終えられるようお手伝いいただければ幸いです。

See you soon!!お待ちしております!