Amma´s Australian Ashram - To Love and Serve
Amma´s Australian Ashram – DEVELOPMENT PROJECT
AUM AMRITESHWARIYAH NAMAH
A Spiritual Centre for all
Dear Amma's Children,
Ashram Development Update – as at February 2015
With Amma's Grace we have completed the majority of the Ashram development. This has included the construction of a hall, ablution block, 2 sets of cabins, a dining area, 2 storage sheds and a machinery cover, a deceleration lane off the main road, internal roads and car parking, drainage of the overall site, the installation of water tanks, external lighting and new electrical and gas connections as well as a significant amount of landscaping.
We are now awaiting the final inspection and receipt of the Certificate of Occupancy as the hall and all associated facilities are now operational.
An inaugural hall program celebrating Amma's 61st birthday was held on the 4th October with a hall sanctification homa taking place on 3rd October 2014.
Throughout the project a few dedicated and hardworking volunteers have assisted with work as needed, especially in drainage, path building, garden maintenance and development, cleaning, preparation of areas for concreting and tank bases, painting, tiling, curtain making and much more and we are extremely grateful to all for their hard work. Landscaping and beautification of the grounds with tree planting, garden beds, climbing vines, new pathways and courtyard surfacing is still ongoing.
Click here to view recent photos >
WE NEED YOUR HELP:
Assistance is sought from Amma devotee volunteers to assist with the ongoing maintenance and improvements to these facilities. Please see the Melbourne newsletter for further information of seva days.
Still to be scheduled once funds are available are:
- Completion of Kitchen and Pergola design.
- Construction and Fit out of Kitchen/Servery
At this stage work on the commercial kitchen and pergola area has been put on hold until a further approximately $120,000 is raised to cover the cost of this work. We also advise that we have limited funds available to fully fit out all buildings.
Your financial assistance is still much needed to complete the project.
HOW CAN YOU HELP?
- Direct Financial Assistance - options are:
- Offers of Non-Financial Assistance and Volunteer of Services will be gratefully accepted. If interested in donating your services or any building materials please contact the ashram manager, Mani Kalimuthu (0425 114447).
- Become Involved in Fund-raising Activities: If you have fund-raising ideas, or would like to volunteer your services, please contact Nava Subramaniam (0415 966375) – ADC Fund raising coordinator.
Some suggested activities include home satsang/fund-raiser dinners; movie dinners; a cultural / musical show organisation; cookery classes, and garage sales. All ideas and suggestions are most welcome. Please email them to email@example.com. Your continued help and support is essential to fulfilling Amma's vision for our redeveloped ashram.
To make a donation, you may pay:
- On-line: Donations can be made by credit cards (Mastercard or Visa only) through the web site www.ammaaustralia.org.au. Click on the Donation Icon on the home page and choose 'Ashram Fund'. Our donation system can handle periodical credit card payments of once only, monthly, every 2 months or 3 months. Select Frequency and click your choice. This is a secure payment site.
The direct link to the donation site is:
- Direct Debit: Please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org requesting the banking details and requirements.
- By mail: Cheques/Money Orders (made payable to: M.A. Centre (Aust) Pty Ltd "Australian Ashram Fund") and send to MA Centre (Aust) Pty Ltd, P.O. Box 2587 Cheltenham, Vic 3192
*To those who have contributed and continue to support the ashram, we are most grateful and hope you will continue your support.
Background to the Ashram Development Project:
Amma says that the purpose of her ashrams or centres are to provide a "place where people can devote all their time and energy to the remembrance of God, doing selfless service and developing qualities such as love, patience and respect for others".
About the Ashram
Amma's Australian ashram, founded in 2006 is located at Carrum Downs on the outskirts of Melbourne and is well-known as a cultural and spiritual centre that promotes community well-being. Recently, as our activities have expanded, we have undertaken a major redevelopment program including the building of a large meditation and program hall, residential cabins, a kitchen/servery with dining facilities and expanded car parking.
Currently the Centre hosts a variety of cultural and community activities including:
- Yoga and Meditation classes
- Weekly cultural program including bhajans, talks, video, meditation
- Scriptural studies
- Youth and Environmental programs
- Amrita Balakendra – fortnightly classes for children.
Volunteers from the Centre operate off site programs for feeding the poor (soup kitchens), helping the aged and environmental activities such as tree planting and clean ups.
Please see the attached general plan of the ashram development and recent photos.
Once operating we will expand the Centre's current activities and introduce a range of new programs including:
- Weekend Yoga and Meditation Retreats
- Large scale events and programs including weddings and cultural functions
- Homa and Puja ceremonies
- Interfaith gatherings
- Community skills building workshop and social events
Daily activities including archana, meditation, arati and bhajans will also continue.
The Ashram will offer a beautiful and serene location for these various programs The additional facilities will better support residential programs for those attracted to Amma's teachings so that local, interstate and overseas visitors will be able to partake in healthy and conscious living practices in tranquil surroundings.
This development is a major step towards building a Centre that will help promote Amma's vision for a more loving and caring society based on spiritual and cultural activities.
Prior to Amma's 2012 tour much was accomplished to renovate and upgrade the existing ashram premises. Internally new plumbing, skylights, rendering of the old dark brickwork, new flooring in the bedrooms and extensive painting took place. The result is a vastly improved, more functional, lighter and brighter ashram. Amma was pleased to see the various renovations undertaken in the existing building.
In early April 2012 Frankston City Council approved MA Centre (Aust) Foundation's Planning Permit application for use of the land as place of Assembly (Ashram) with associated accommodation.
Originally the development plans had involved a two phased project but during the Gold Coast retreat in April 2012 Amma advised that we should proceed with both stages of the project simultaneously and gave her blessings to commence the next phase of the development which involved the building of the main hall, kitchen and other facilities.
On the 31st of March 2013 Br. Shraddhamrita conducted a Bhumi Puja at the site of the planned hall. The Bhumi Puja is a ceremony performed to inaugurate a new site for the construction of a home or building.
The ceremony was conducted in strict conformance to Vaastu Shastra, the ancient Indian science of structures and architecture.
A foundation stone specially blessed by Amma and bought to Melbourne was laid at the bottom of a pit dug on the site during the Puja.
Major works completed to date:
- Planning and permit applications;
- Renovation, upgrading and improvements to existing premises – both internal and external;
- Construction of a Vic Roads required and approved deceleration lane at entrance to ashram which has made access into the ashram much safer.
- Installation of eco-friendly Worm Farm Waste System connected to both the existing property and the new development;
- Dining Hall construction, plastering, tiling, painting and electrical work;
- Extensive Drainage works;
- Installation of electricity supply upgrade to the property;
- Site preparation including electricity, gas and sewerage trenching for the upgraded connections;
- Construction of internal road and car parking;
- Construction of new storage and workshop sheds;
- Construction of the hall including external wall rendering, insulation, plastering, architrave and skirting, painting and electrical fittings completed at the end of February 2014;
- The cabins and ablutions block construction is also now complete including electrical fit out, tiling, plumbing and outdoor paving. Volunteers are in the final stages of painting of the cabins.
- Major landscaping of the site has taken place including pathways, trees for a windbreak on the western boundary, and initial planning of the two pond water feature to the rear of the property.
In Amma's Service
The Ashram Development Committee
Aum Namah Shivaya
“When the deep spiritual yearning of the disciple basks
in the effulgence of the guru’s grace, an ashram is born.
There one grows in peace and harmony” ~ AMMA