Embracing Selfless Service for Peace & Harmony:
The Amritavarsham50 Youth Meet
“In every part of the world, we can see that the zeal to realise higher ideals and the enthusiasm to serve society is to be found mostly among the youth. My children, you should blossom into beautiful flowers, spreading fragrance throughout the country and the world.” -Amma
26 September 2003
The Amritavarsham50 Youth Summit, “The Future Generation Embracing Selfless Service for Peace & Harmony” found 14 young people from around the world, coming together to talk about the impact Amma has had on their lives. In today’s world, their stories were uncommon—here were youth talking of sense of purpose, of wanting to give as much as possible to the world, of feeling a sense of belonging, of the value of dharma and culture. Indeed, in today’s world such talk is rare. But among the youth who’ve been touched by Amma, such tales thrive.
To inaugurate the summit, the young delegates collectively watered a kalpataru (banyan) sapling. In India, the kalpataru is known as the wish-fulfilling tree and the inauguration ceremony was meant to symbolise the powerful potential inherent in youth. The eminent scholar and former state minister of Maharashtra, Dr. Shrikant Jichkar, served as the Summit’s master-of-ceremonies.
The youth delegates then took the stage and opened their hearts in inspiring stories of transformation under Amma’s guidance. Hailing from countries and cultures as diverse as India, France, Japan, Australia, the United States, Germany and Brazil, the young visionaries spoke of how Amma’s principles of selfless service and compassion have transformed their lives and the world around them.
Brahmachari Shantamrita Chaitanya, one of Amma’s disciples, opened the Youth Summit by pointing out that the young delegates were special because they had Amma. “She not only gives the proper guidance and support but is also a living example who lives Her words through Her actions. The youth will make the difference in the world. They are ready to take Amma’s cue. For millions of youth around the world, Amma is the inspiring force.”
After the conclusion of the Youth Summit, the President of India came to address the more than 100,000 youth from around the world who’d gathered in the Amritavarsham50 Stadium. The essence of his speech: “dare to dream.”
When the president had finished, an international group of celebrities and dignitaries delivered short messages to the youth, inspiring them to preserve the environment, to anchor the lives in spirituality, to love one another and to serve the world selflessly. Speakers included Shri. Bawa Jain, Shri. C.K. Prahalad, Ms. Hanne Strong, Padmashree Mammootty, Smt. Sushma Swaraj, Shri. B.V. Jagadeesh and Shri. Jackie Shroff.
The enthusiasm emanating from the stadium—which contained the future caretakers of the world—was palpable. One could feel the potential, the energy, the enthusiasm, the unspoiled optimism. And there, on the stage, watching throughout it all, was Amma. Later that night, Amma Herself would address the youth directly in Her satsang, beginning, “Amma is delighted to see so many of Her younger children gathered together today. Each one of you is the hope and the future of the world. …”
“Youngsters like you should get ready to fight a war—not a war with guns or bombs—but a war that is fought with the weapons of goodness and compassion.”
-Amma, Amritavarsham50 satsang, on 26 September