Celebrated Humanitarian Visits Alexandria Virginia | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

: News

Filed Under:

Celebrated Humanitarian Visits Alexandria Virginia

Play associated audio

By Cathy Carter

Thousands of people will travel to Alexandria Virginia this weekend to be embraced by a woman known as the "hugging saint."

An ordinary hotel ballroom has been transformed into a place of worship as people from all walks of life and religions wait for their turn to be hugged by Amma, a small smiling woman from India.

It's called Darshan or blessing, but Amma doesn't espouse one particular religion.

"She encourages Jews to be better Jews, Christians to be better Christians and so forth, Muslims to be better Muslims 'cause at the essence of all these religions is compassion," says Rob Sidon, a volunteer traveling with Amma on her annual U.S tour.

Considered a living saint in her homeland, Amma's worlwide charities including disaster relief programs, hospitals, orphanages, and free food programs including Amma's Kitchen in Rockville, Maryland and Fairfax, Virginia.

The free public program, including hugs, runs through Sunday at the Mark Center Hilton in Alexandria.

NPR

How'd A Cartoonist Sell His First Drawing? It Only Took 610 Tries

Tom Toro was a directionless 20-something film school dropout. Then, after an inspired moment at a used book sale, he started submitting drawings to The New Yorker ... and collecting rejection slips.
NPR

Will Environmentalists Fall For Faux Fish Made From Plants?

A handful of chefs and food companies are experimenting with fish-like alternatives to seafood. But the market is still a few steps behind plant-based products for meat and dairy.
NPR

Will We See Veto Battles On Capitol Hill?

With President Obama promising to vetoes, what are the possibilities of a few veto overrides during the next two years? NPR's Arun Rath puts that questions to the National Journal's Fawn Johnson.
NPR

3 Voices, 1 Threat: Personal Stories Of Cyberhacking

In President Obama's State of the Union address, he gave fresh emphasis to a problem that has been in the headlines: cybersecurity. Here are three people who have experienced security breaches.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.