Brahma Kumari's Raja Yoga
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The Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual University (BKWSU)
is an international non-governmental organisation
headquartered at Mt. Abu, Rajasthan, India
with over 8,500 centres in 100 countries, territories and islands. As a
learning community, it currently has more than 825,000 regular students
seeking to strengthen their ability to live by their own higher nature and
to improve their contribution to society through spiritual education and
It was founded in 1936 in Hyderabad, Sindh (now part of Pakistan, but at
that time part of colonial India) by Dada Lekhraj, who had a series of
visions depicting world transformation. In 1937, he formed a managing
committee of eight young women and established an informal group that grew
into the Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual University.
Brahma Kumaris means ‘daughters of Brahma.’
Seminal to the vision of world renewal was the revelation of the important and
prominent role of women as spiritual teachers. Brahma Baba correctly foresaw
that core values based on traditionally feminine qualities – patience,
tolerance, sacrifice, kindness and love – would increasingly become the
foundation of progress in personal growth, human relations, and the development
of caring communities. To maintain the emphasis on this vital core of
leadership, he named the organisation the Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual
Dada Lekhraj was a successful and much-respected jeweller. In 1936, aged 60,
when most of his colleagues were planning their retirement, he entered into the
most active and fascinating phase of his life, during which he became known
as Brahma Baba. Drawn to invest more time in quiet reflection and solitude, he
began to experience a series of powerful visions that continued periodically
over several months. Through them, he received new insights into the innate
qualities of human souls, the mysterious entity of God and the process of world
transformation. The intensity of the messages conveyed by the visions was such
that Brahma Baba felt compelled to wrap up his worldly business and devote
himself to understanding the significance and application of this revealed
He spent the last 33 years of his life bringing people of all cultural, economic
and religious backgrounds together to rediscover and develop the spiritual
dimensions of their personal lives and to integrate this into their world.
Brahma Baba insisted that his role was that of an instrument and example, and
not that of a guru. He recognised God, the Being of Light, the Benevolent One,
as the primary inspiration for the Brahma Kumaris and their work, and directed
everyone’s attention towards God. After the partition of India and Pakistan he
moved with the other founding members to Mt. Abu in India, where he remained
until his death in 1969.
When Brahma Baba passed from this life, in January 1969, the leadership of the
organisation continued with members of the original committee of young women.
Today, the surviving leaders carry a powerful presence, having spent a lifetime
mastering the inculcation and application of spiritual knowledge. Dadi Janki currently
serves as the Chief Administrative Head of the Brahma Kumaris worldwide. Dadi
Hirdaya Mohini, the Co-Administrative Head and Dadi Ratan Mohini, the additional
Now in their eighties and nineties, these women, fondly called Dadis (elder
sisters), serve as instruments who share a total dedication to God. Regarded as
seniors, they have an immense love and regard for one another and an absolute
commitment to world service.
The Brahma Kumaris seeks to help individuals re-discover and strengthen their
inherent worth by encouraging and facilitating a process of spiritual awakening.
This leads to an awareness of the importance of thoughts and feelings as the
seeds of actions. The development of virtues and values-based attitudes creates
a practical spirituality which enhances personal effectiveness in the workplace
and in family life.
An understanding of the spiritual context of human existence is offered, helping
to make sense of contemporary issues. Based on the principle that the roots of
change lie within, the university encourages individuals to live by their
highest values, vision and purpose. It holds that this commitment to
self-transformation will create peace and a better world for all.
Through its international network of centres, the organisation offers courses in
Raja Yoga Meditation and a variety of lectures, short courses and programmes in
personal development. Outreach projects to the community serve a variety of
local needs. Brahma Kumaris retreat centres provide a supportive and nurturing
environment where individuals and professional groups can explore meditation and
the application of spiritual values in daily life. At the national and
international level, by engaging in partnerships and dialogues, the Brahma
Kumaris co-ordinates a variety of projects providing opportunities to
participate in activities of social and humanitarian concern. The focus is
always on developing spiritual learning as the key to individual and world
The guiding principles that form the foundation on which all BK courses,
activities, programmes and projects evolve are respect, co-operation,
trusteeship and benevolence.
All courses, activities, programmes and projects help sustain a life-long
learning process. Offerings are broad and inclusive, applicable in everyday
life, and relevant within a broad cultural context.
Courses and Programmes offered at the centres:
Core Curriculum: Raja Yoga Meditation At the heart of the university’s teachings
is the Foundation Course in Raja Yoga Meditation. Classes are a practical study
and facilitate an inward journey towards recognition of the deepest aspects of
the self, a relationship with God, and the purpose of life. The practice
of meditation is grounded in a core knowledge that connects the inner world of
thoughts, feelings and ideas to the outer world of actions and relationships.
The result of this practice builds mental, intellectual and emotional capacity.
Like any skill, meditation requires practice. By doing a little every day, it
soon becomes a natural, easy and enjoyable habit. The course covers:
Consciousness and Self-Realization
Our Home of Silence
Relationship with God
Law of Karma
Eternal World Drama
Tree of Life
A Spiritual Lifestyle
The course presentation may vary according to country, culture and local
Personal Development Courses Through these courses and programmes individuals
deepen their self-understanding, explore and experiment with spiritual life
skills, and develop a strong spiritual context with which to live a practical
and fulfilling life. The courses offered may include:
From the beginning, the organisation’s work has been based on the principle that
spiritual knowledge is a basic right of every human being. It was the founder’s
(Brahma Baba’s) aim to provide opportunities for everyone to develop their own
spiritual potential, without charge, regardless of age, background or financial
circumstances. This ethic is endorsed and reflected by all participating BK
teachers and students.
The organisation is run with voluntary contributions, both financial and in
kind, from individuals who have been served personally through its courses and
activities. As an aspect of their life of service, students of the Brahma
Kumaris contribute regularly in support of the work, in accordance with their
means. This is done without overview by the organisation. The organisation
neither solicits nor accepts funds from others for activities that relate to the
internal running of the organisation and there is no membership fee.
Funds from well-wishers, national or international agencies are sometimes
received for humanitarian and environmental initiatives, such as solar energy
projects, health and education projects that are designed to benefit the
community as a whole
The basic understanding in Raja Yoga meditation, which the university teaches,
is that each one of us is an eternal spirit or soul. Like actors taking on a
costume, we express ourselves on the ‘stage’ of the world through our physical
bodies. As souls, our original nature is filled with the highest qualities of
peace, purity, love, joy and power. However, over time, forgetting this
spiritual truth, we have lost ourselves in an addictive search for temporary
happiness through physical and material means. This has brought us into a state
of worry, fear and conflict.
The present time is seen as a unique turning point, in which amidst the
suffering and violence, a transformation of consciousness is taking place. How?
The university understands that the tree of humanity has one seed, God, the
Supreme Soul, who stays eternally full of all divine qualities that are
originally ours. As children of the one Seed, all souls are spiritually related.
By making a subtle shift from an outer, material consciousness to an inner,
spiritual consciousness, we once again realise our true selves and God, and move
towards our nature of peace, respect and love. The process begins at the
personal level and will eventually lead to a shift from a world torn apart by
anger, dependency, arrogance, greed and lust to a kinder, gentler world with
only the finest in human virtues – happiness, love, peace and purity.
Locate the nearest center
( Courtesy: The Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual
University http://www.bkwsu.org )
Articles: Religious talks