We are told that she strains herself for hours to hug her devotees one by one, that she owns a spiritual international empire in spite of her disadvantaged social background, that she leads many charities out of compassion for the human race. In a nutshell, we are prompted to admire her. The few times that we hear about her devotees, it's only to see them praising her. Her fruit is admiration, mainly arisen from spectacular numbers : number of hugs, number of hours spent in darshan, number of institutions, number of millions allowed to natural disasters relief, number of pensions for the widow... Something's wrong. What do all these numbers have to do with guidance? A few witnesses help us to watch the scene from a different angle.
In his memoirs, Ron Rattner tells us about the competition between Mata Amritanandamayi and other gurus, particularly Mother Meera and Shri Amma Karunamayi :
"I learned that Ammachi had dramatically required that all ashram library books about Mother Meera be removed and burned"
"I learned to my distress that in preparing the large Assisi spiritual venue for Ammachi some of her devotees had covered up pictures of other spiritual teachers which were on permanent display there"
"Ammachi’s New York devotees had received an ‘edict’ from Ammachi – which I later confirmed – against helping or seeing Karunamayi"
"I learned of defamatory gossip and rumors about Karunamayi attributable to the Ammachi organization"
When an article talks about the misconduct of a guru, the users comments often drift toward Mata Amritanandamayi. Svelte Saggi tells us about his experience as a student in one of her institution :
"i remember i was asked several times by my hostel wardens why i didn't stick a blow-up of 'Amma'(as she is affectionately called) in my room"
"the one thing that irritated me the most about the devotional songs was that the local ashram lyricists used to take popular devotional songs already in existence and punch out the name of the God mentioned in it and replace it with Amma or Amrita"
"i was forced to go there once by my department head with the threat that he'll cut my internal marks in that semester if i didn't go"
"the so-called 'VIP Devotees' and Ashram inmates are often people with criminal backgrounds who have come to seek asylum.i know one of the department heads in my own college is an escaped convict"
Mridula, former assistant of Swamini Krishnamritaprana aka Saumia, testifies on Gail Tredwell's facebook page :
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"I remember myself having to burn in emergency, upon amma's specific request, all the accounting book of the cafe I was taking care of in Ashram when the Income tax told us they were going to come to check the finance of the ashram"
"I still remember Saumia throwing an ashtray in Marble to my face across the table of the bookstore in San Ramon with the intention to hurt me"
"I am so glad to have been able to get out of this hell, since I left I live in paradise and only God knows that all I did there was on his Only name"
None of these look like spiritual fruits. If what goes on behind the scene is misleading, then the scene that is played in front is likely to be fake.