This time it was Monday, December 06, 2010. It was again along the seaside on Alappad village towards south of the Ashram. We were many in number as it is the time when Amma is in Amritapuri: devotees from India and abroad and principals (brahmacharinis) of Amrita Vidyalayam schools were the new additional faces.
Devotees were in joyous mood even as 30 of us packed in a 15 capacity vandi.
This time we gathered all the waste along the shore, which were plenty. Mother Sea, by the side of these garbage heaps, has been really patient, I must say. If it was any habitat there, nobody would have dared to throw their waste. Amma sent us there!
We separated hard and soft plastic, bottles and glass, paper and clothes etc. The burnable waste was set fire to.
The groups just went on walking and gathering waste along the sea for several kilometers. Little jeeps came in intervals to supply empty sacks or to collect the filled up sacks.
Several women from the villages joined us.
As I walked back the several kilometers, I saw more than a dozen little campfires, lit by Amalabharatam volunteers. I couldn’t help remembering the scriptures.
Four days ago during the last class of Mundaka Upanishad, Swami Kaivalyanandaji explained how we have to interpret ancient scripture to modern times. It is said, one aspiring for the Ultimate “he shall burn the Ekarshi fire exactly as in the rite”. This burning of Ekarshi agni, Swami said, cannot be done today just as prescribed in the scriptures for the simple reason that circumstances are not the same. Then what does that term mean to our times?
For aspirants under the direct guidance of the Satguru, Amma, this fire ceremony is nothing but the karma prescribed by Amma. He alluded this Amalabharatam cleaning work to the fire ceremony mentioned in the concluding verse of Mundaka, namely Ekarshi.