Happy Mothers Day – A Tribute to my Mother.

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This article was first Published on May 9, 2020 at – : https://centerforpluralism.com/happy-mothers-day-a-tribute-to-my-mother/

One way to pay tribute to your mother is to dedicate your day to her, don’t do anything but being with her, there is immense joy in it. Those who have lost their mothers, they can write about her and pray for her soul.

This story is about an inclusive Mother’s day. Blessed are those who were raised by loving, and caring Mothers. Exalted are the Single Mothers who sacrifice every pleasure of their life so their kids don’t miss out on life. Enthroned are those fathers who raised their kids as a father and a mother. Of course, our prayers and empathies for those who grew up with no mother or abusive mothers, but still made it.

This essay also includes Mothers in different religious traditions, the name ‘Mother’ in 115 languages, and honoring a few women that I know and appreciate,  including my Mother and Grand Mother.

Twenty years ago, when my mother called me to say, she was leaving this world, I was overwhelmed with emotion, but felt good to tell her that I loved her and let her know that, whatever I am today is because of her. That was one of the best things I have done in my life to express my gratitude. Within two hours I was on the plane from Dallas to Bangalore but reached my home four hours after she passed away.

Even after her death, she shaped my life with two particular items. She taught me by example to tie the loose ends of life and keep the slate of my life as clean as I can. It is her blessings. The next thing she told me was to meet her in paradise and tell her that I died helping someone, but certainly not counting money, and that drove me from money-making activities to volunteering. Today, I am at peace with myself, and pleased to have achieved the pinnacle of life by establishing the Center for Pluralism – a nonprofit 501 (c) (3) organization committed to building cohesive societies, where every human feels secure about his/her faith, race, ethnicity and culture.

I am grateful to Everett Blauvelt, my friend, and the father figure to me, he told me to spend time with my mother without arguing. Of course, everyone gets into arguments with his/her mother, so was I. But after that sane advice, every time I visited her, I sat next to her on the bench (Takht). She will tell me everything about everyone and I would shut up and listen, it was not easy, but I did. What a blessing it was, after two hours of filling my ears she would lit up and gave me the Jimmy Carter smile. That was my reward and my blessing and that was the other best thing I have done in my life. I cherish her happy face forever. So my friends, please dedicate your day to your mother. Friends come and go, you move from place to place – but your mother is there for you.

On Mothers Day and on her death anniversary, as a Muslim, I find comfort in starting my day by praying two units of prayer and reciting a chapter from the Quran. My whole day remains peaceful.

I appreciate all the mothers who have raised their kids well, particularly single mothers and single fathers. Getting them ready to go to school and juggling between taking them to different playgrounds, daycare, and work is not easy.  

A lot of sacrifices are made by single mothers and single fathers who are also mother their kids.  No amount of appreciation will be enough. Whatever you are today, it is because of your mother.  In the following essay, I will share a few personal examples of the struggle mothers go through, and how you can appreciate them, which in turn brings you a blissful life.

Mother is the ultimate definition of selflessness! No matter what happens to the world or even her, she is there for you in your need; she recognizes your need much before you even know it. Of course every day is Mother’s day, and each one of us honors her in a variety of ways.  Just giving her a smile, a thank you, and caring to do things for her makes her happy and feel appreciated.

Mothers don’t need a whole lot; they just need to know that you care. Remember, you were showered by her attention when you needed it.

A majority of us are fortunate to have the love and affection of a mother to bless our lives. However, we cannot forget the pain and anguish of men and women who were not blessed with a loving mother.  I assure you that you are a blessed one to have made it in life without mothers’ love, and since you missed it, it is time for you to give that love to others and restore the spirit of love within you.

I am pleased to acknowledge and appreciate a few people that I know; from my ex-wife Ella to the people I happen to know. What is common to all of them is they remained devoted to raising their children and sacrificed their own lives for the good of their children.  

My Grandmother raised my father and aunt when she became a widow at Sixteen and never took any one’s help and raised her kids working day and night,  remaining single all her life until she was Ninety-eight.   She was an independent woman with a lot of self-respect and dignity.  I salute all the mothers for their sacrifices and admire them for their achievements.

A person who is not grateful, and has not learned to express gratitude is seriously handicapped in living a full life. He or she will miss out a lot, but they can change it, it is their choice to express gratitude. It’s time to express gratitude to our mothers; it restores the spiritual balance in each one of us. In my case, on every Mothers day, I pray and write a tribute to my mother and this is dedicated to her and all the single mothers.

I had a radio show way back in the mid-Nineties and on Mother’s day, I took live calls for three hours.  Every one of the callers cried talking about his or her late mother and I burst out crying. it was worth it for my Mother.  When I visit India, from the airport, I go straight to the cemetery to pay tribute to my parents and my grandmother and maternal grandfather, who all shaped in my raising.

 Life is about transactions. Each time we receive a “good” we become indebted to the giver, but when we give back to the giver or find alternate ways of giving back,  i.e.,  expressing gratitude and apologizing for the shortcomings, we complete the transaction.  When we do that, we regain our spiritual balance, bringing us salvation, nirvana, mukti, moksha, nijaat, and freedom. Try it and see the good it does to you.

If you have tensions with her, seek her forgiveness today.  If she is not around, spend half an hour meditating about her and see the sense of completeness you feel within you.

Every religious tradition has elevated mother to nearly the status of God, because she possess many a qualities of God; kindness, merciful, beneficent and caring among thousand other qualities. Mother is the reason for our existence; sustenance, nurturance and shaping who we are. I dedicate this write-up to my Mother, and all the Mothers out there. There is a beautiful song in Urdu/Hindi language

Us ko nahin dekha hum ne kabhi, per us ki zaroorat kya hogi
Ai maa teri soorat say alag bhagwan ki soorat kya hogi.

I have not seen him (God) ever, but what is the need for it?
Dear Mother, your face cannot be different than God’s own face

Here is the song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3HbmbO0b-Sc&feature=youtu.be

Thanks to this beautiful tradition of America, a day to honor all Mothers. No mother should be alone today; someone or the other must give her a call.


In the native traditions, be it American, European, African, or Asian, Mother is creator in the form of mother Earth.

Christianity and Judaism: “Honor your father and mother. Then you will live a long, full life in the land the LORD your God will give you. In Jewish tradition, your heritage is determined by your Mother, you are a Jew because of your mother.

“Diverse images of what are believed to be Mother Goddesses also have been discovered that date from the Neolithic period, the New Stone Age, which ranges from approximately 10,000 BCE when the use of wild cereals led to the beginning of farming, and eventually, to agriculture.” Wikipedia

The Baha’i faith, “For mothers are the first educators, the first mentors; and truly it is the mothers who determine the happiness, the future greatness, the courteous ways and learning and judgment, the understanding and the faith of their little ones.”

In the Hindu tradition Mother is worshiped and is represented in many attributes like Ma Saraswati (source of knowledge), Ma Lakshmi (source of income) and the likes… Mother’s face is equated with God’s face, a song celebrates Mother by saying, if I have seen your face mother, and I have seen God.

Sikh’s consider God as a parent, a mother and a father. Guru Granth Sahib advises “Always remember the boundless, limitless God, remembering whom all our sins are destroyed. My son, this is a mother’s prayer for you.”

Prophet Muhammad was asked by his associates, who are the most important person in one’s life – he says, “Mother”; they ask again, the answer was “Mother again” and same response was given for the third time, such is the importance given to mother. He said, your heaven, your paradise and your peace of mind comes to you by serving your mother.

You will find mother is placed at the highest spiritual level in all religions or non-religious traditions and life forms. Those who have a mother to see, you are the blessed one, those who don’t, you have her blessings.

“Paradise is under the feet of your mother” is the mantra probably every Muslim recites and it is part of Hindu, Sikh, Jain and South Asian culture as well. The idea is of gratitude, if you are grateful to you mother, then you would be grateful to the creator and other benefactors around you.

In 2001, my Mother passed away in one of the most beautiful manners one could embark on, the eternal journey; a clean slate with no loose ends. She was incredible; she tied all the loose ends before she took her last breath, she called every one and cleared the air and said goodbye that was the biggest lesson of my life; to tie the loose ends. The Jain tradition calls it Michami Dukadam.

I guess, all of us kids and her grand kids turned out that way; boundless. No barriers between us and another soul and our relationships have always been multi-cultural and multi-religious. Thanks Mom for pounding those values in our hearts and minds.


I called my mother, “Amma” and at times “Ammi” while addressing her it was Ma.

Afrikaans – Moeder, Ma 
Albanian – Nënë, Mëmë 
Arabic – Ahm, umm
Aragones – Mai 
Asturian – Ma 
Aymara – Taica 
Azeri (Latin Script) – Ana 
Basque – Ama 
Belarusan -Matka 
Bergamasco – Màder 
Bolognese – Mèder 
Bosnian- Majka 
Brazilian Portuguese- Mãe 
Bresciano- Madèr 
Breton – Mamm 
Bulgarian – Majka 
Byelorussian – Macii 
Calabrese – Matre, Mamma 
Caló – Bata, Dai 
Catalan – Mare 
Cebuano – Inahan, Nanay 
Chechen – Nana 
Croatian- Mati, Majka 
Czech- Abatyse 
Danish – Mor 
Dutch – Moeder, Moer 
Dzoratâi – Mére 
English- Mother, Mama, Mom 
Esperanto- Patrino, Panjo 
Estonian- Ema 
Faeroese- Móðir 
Finnish- Äiti 
Flemish- Moeder 
French- Mère, Maman 
Frisian- Emo, Emä, Kantaäiti, Äiti 
Furlan- Mari 
Galician- Nai 
German – Mutter 
Greek – Màna 
Griko – Salentino, Mána 
Hawaiian – Makuahine 
Hindi – Ma, Maji, Mata
Hungarian – Anya, Fu 
Icelandic – Móðir 
Ilongo – Iloy, Nanay, Nay 
Indonesian – Induk, Ibu, Biang, Nyokap 
Irish – Máthair 
Italian – Madre, Mamma 
Japanese – Okaasan, Haha 
Judeo Spanish- Madre 
Kannada -Amma 
Kurdish Kurmanji – Daya 
Ladino – Uma 
Latin – Mater 
Leonese – Mai 
Ligurian- Maire 
Limburgian – Moder, Mojer, Mam 
Lingala- Mama 
Lithuanian- Motina 
Lombardo- Occidentale Madar 
Lunfardo- Vieja 
Macedonian – Majka 
Malagasy- Reny 
Malay- Emak 
Maltese- Omm 
Mantuan- Madar 
Maori- Ewe, Haakui 
Mapunzugun – Ñuke, Ñuque 
Marathi – Aayi 
Mongolian – `eh 
Mudnés- Medra, mama 
Neapolitan – Mamma 
Norwegian- Madre 
Occitan – Maire 
Old Greek – Mytyr 
Parmigiano- Mädra 
Persian- Madr, Maman 
Piemontese – Mare 
Polish- Matka, Mama 
Portuguese – Mãe 
Punjabi – Mai, Mataji, Pabo 
Quechua- Mama 
Rapanui -Matu’a Vahine 
Reggiano – Mèdra 
Romagnolo – Mèder 
Romanian – Mama, Maica 
Romansh – Mamma 
Russian -Mat’ 
Saami -Eadni 
Samoan – Tina 
Sardinian- (Limba Sarda Unificada) Mama 
Sardinian -Campidanesu mamai 
Sardinian- Logudoresu Madre, Mamma 
Serbian – Majka 
Shona – Amai 
Sicilian – Matri 
Slovak – Mama, Matka 
Slovenian- Máti 
Spanish – Madre, Mamá, Mami 
Swahili— Mama, Mzazi, Mzaa 
Swedish Mamma, Mor, Morsa 
Swiss German -Mueter 
Telegu- Amma 
Triestino – Mare 
Turkish – Anne, Ana, Valide 
Turkmen -Eje 
Ukrainian – Mati 
Urdu -Ammee, Maa, Amma
Valencian – Mare 
Venetian – Mare 
Viestano – Mamm’ 
Vietnamese- me 
Wallon -Mére 
Welsh – Mam 
Yiddish -Muter 
Zeneize -Moæ

Mike Ghouse is committed to building cohesive societies and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day- all about him atwww.MikeGhouse.net and www.Centerforpluralism.com 

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