The latest CD by J. Mascis, the guitarist and singer of Dinosaur jr, is a collection of devotional songs dedicated to the living Indian Saint, Sri Mata Amritanandamayi Devi (Amma). Amma is a humanitarian and spiritual leader who has dedicated her life to uplifting suffering humanity through the her embrace, which she offers to all regardless of caste, creed or religion. She often sits as long as 20 hours straight in order to console people in this way. In the past 30 years she has hugged more than 24 million people throughout the world. Amma has also started a vast range of humanitarian projects, including orphanages, charitable hospitals and free homes for the homeless. After the tsunami struck in December 2004, Amma pledged 23 million dollars in relief aid. Her organization is currently in the process of building 6200 homes destroyed in the disaster, and has been providing free food, medical care and shelter since the disaster struck. All the proceeds of Mascis' CD go towards this cause. For information about Amma visit www.amma.org. The CD finds Mascis both on electric and acoustic guitar, playing original devotional songs, including "Help Me, Amma," "Amma What Now?," "Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu," "Please Remember That I'm Here" and "Take Me Home." "Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu" is a Sanskrit mantra meaning "May All the Beings in all the Worlds Be Happy." The final song, "Ayi Giri Nandini," is a metalized version of a Sanskrit hymn by Adi Shankaracharya. Written around 1300 years ago, the hymn sings the glories of the Divine Mother as she slaughters the demonic forces of Mahisha Asura, the Buffalo Demon. Mahisha Asura symbolizes the dark negativities of humanity: greed, anger, laziness, pride, etc.
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