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Life after the BKs
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Atma



Joined: 26 Feb 2004
Posts: 98

PostPosted: Wed Apr 21, 2004 5:34 pm    Post subject: Life after the BKs

gyaniwasi wrote:
Quote:
Thanks Atma! You sound as though you've managed to heal completely - that's enviable! It would be nice if you can share with us your experience of healing and what kind of lifestyle you now enjoy. What have you taken from the path that contributes to your new wholeness or foundation and what new perceptions are particularly useful to maintaining balance and contentment? We need so much to hear from you wise 'oldies'. Care to share?

isabel wrote:
Quote:
Wow, Atma. What a beautiful resolution. I also like what you had to say about going back a second time to the B.K.s -this time with your eyes wide open. Maybe that's a good way to negotiate a resolution for xBKs stuck in a sort of netherworld like myself.

I too would like to hear more about how you've negotiated your spiritual path since. Please do share if you feel comfortable



gyaniwasi and Isabel,

Thanks for your kind comments. The quotes above are from your posts in the "Post-BK spiritual growth" topic, which Isabel started in the "XBK discussions" forum. I have decided to post my replies in this brand new forum which Admin has created specially for us.

My compliments to Admin. I think its a great idea to give us XBKs a forum for ourselves alone...separates the wheat from the chaff Smile Besides, we can still post in the other forums. Good move to give BKs and PBKs their own forums too...they can "do service" on each other to their hearts' content Very Happy

I would definitely like to share more about my post BK life with you. In fact, I think this topic can be used by all of us to talk about that. It's a huge topic, so we can all post little "installments" and responses from time to time. I have to take a break now to have a meal (still veggie) but I will come back and write up my first "installment" later this evening....so watch this space Smile
Atma



Joined: 26 Feb 2004
Posts: 98

PostPosted: Wed Apr 21, 2004 8:31 pm    Post subject:

OK, I'm back...as promised.

gyaniwasi, while we are all XBKs, I am sure that you will agree that our experiences, inner states, situations and "positions" will vary somewhat. So, if my views are a little different from the way you or the others feel, that's just an honest difference of opinion / feeling OK?

Why that preface to my post? Well, take for instance your sentence:

Quote:
You sound as though you've managed to heal completely - that's enviable!


That tells me that your post BK feelings are somewhat heavier than mine. I can understand and respect that. However, in my case, I would not use the word "healing" when talking about my post BK life. "Healing" denotes a significant wound or hurt - in our context, at an emotional or spiritual level...and I cannot honestly say that I suffered / suffer in that way as a result of the BK encounter and experience.

To be sure, I had disappointments in the path, and I have significant dissatisfactions and criticisms - some of which I have expressed in other posts. But none of those go to the level of what I would call "hurt" or a "wound" or "scar". In my case, I would say it's more like disappointment and perhaps some cynicism.

Then there is the plus side. To quote kyra:

Quote:
i think some of things i learnt through the BKs helped enhance my life.


I think you too recognise that there could be an upside to the experience. It can be seen in the question you asked:

Quote:
...What have you taken from the path that contributes to your new wholeness or foundation...


Isabel too sees the positive side, as this quote from one of her posts shows:

Quote:
I experienced tremendous spiritual growth with the b.K.s.


OK, I think this would be it for my first "installment". I know that I am breaking off abruptly...but think of this as a TV cliffhanger....to be continued in my next episode Smile

In the meanwhile, it would be good if you, my fellow XBKs, give your reactions and do some "sharing" here. Bit by bit, we'll work this through...
Guest






PostPosted: Wed Apr 21, 2004 11:05 pm    Post subject:

I appreciate that the administrator is looking out for us, but in a way it's been helpful to see b.k. reactions to our dialogue. Contrasting their line of reasoning with that of our own has made me feel better about the path I have chosen. It's also interesting because it allows me to observe the way I must have viewed the world three or four years ago. ...But I will admit it's nice to not have to anticipate being ministered to Smile

In response to the topic you've raised regarding post b.k. feelings:
I concur that it was a wonderful experience, though I do think I picked up a few hang-ups in the process. I struggle mostly with the void left by my very active spiritual life as a b.K. I miss having that level of spiritual engagement and am not sure where to turn to find it.

On an entirely different note, I just wanted to express my thanks to all of you x.b.k.s who've been posting here and to the administrator for setting this up in the first place. You've all contributed a great deal of time and thought to the forum and I think good things are coming of it. Laughing
Guest






PostPosted: Wed Apr 21, 2004 11:07 pm    Post subject:

Ooops! That last post was mine - Isabel
administrator
Site Admin


Joined: 15 Nov 2003
Posts: 48

PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2004 12:01 am    Post subject:

Isabel,

Thanks for the appreciation.

It's now my turn to say "Oops". Your post showed up as made by a "Guest" because the setting for this forum inadvertently enabled anyone (non members) to post. It should have been set to enable only members to post. Anyway, I have restored the setting to "members", so now your user names will show up with your posts, instead of "Guest". The only forum that should show "Guest" posts is the Visitors' forum - visitors would be able to post there without having to be members and without logging in, and their posts will show up as made by "Guest".

I take your point about the benefits of the BK / XBK interaction. However, you can still have that interaction, as the "XBK discussions" forum remains the main forum on the site and - even though they now have their own separate forums - BKs and PBKs are still allowed to post in the "XBK discussions" forum - provided that they are not proselytizing strongly. You are also free to go to their forums to interact with them.

This exclusive "XBKs only" forum was created to give XBKs the added option of discussing among themselves alone. Here, as you said, you need not be concerned about being "ministered to" Smile The range of topics that can be discussed here is completely open, but my guess is that this exclusive forum would probably be used for discussions that are a bit more intense, personal and forward looking. The sort of things that BKs and PBKs would not meaningfully contribute to.

All for your convenience,

XBKchat Administrator
Atma



Joined: 26 Feb 2004
Posts: 98

PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2004 8:17 pm    Post subject:

Isabel wrote:

Quote:
In response to the topic you've raised regarding post b.k. feelings:
I concur that it was a wonderful experience, though I do think I picked up a few hang-ups in the process. I struggle mostly with the void left by my very active spiritual life as a b.K. I miss having that level of spiritual engagement and am not sure where to turn to find it.


Isabel,

They say once innocence is lost, it's lost. Even in the physical realm, a person can't go back to being a virgin. There may be an exception. I heard that some Japanese doctors do an operation.... Anyway, you get my drift Smile We have lost that intellectual and spiritual innocence....forever. Our "childhood" is now in the past.

Interestingly, SB himself said a few things about those who have left. You have remarked about being stuck in a netherworld. In some degree, I think that would be true of all XBKs....except for those whose involvement was short and shallow, and who did not really grasp the concepts and change their consciousness.

SB also said that those who leave will be neither fully in or out of the BK world nor the "worldly" world. When I heard that in the Murlis, it did not come across as a curse - He has said several times that he does not curse anyone - or as bad wishes. It seemed to me that he was simply stating it as a fact of post gyan reality: "You have seen the moon".

Maybe going back to resolve things once and for all, the way I did, may work for you. However, I can't say that "one size fits all" so you would have to do some soul searching and see if the idea fits you and feels right. SB said "Some (who left) will come back, but their stage will never be as high as it was before". And he is right. Once innocence is lost, its lost.

One other thing: If you do decide to give it another shot, be prepared for some "suspicious vibes" from those BKs who knew you. Initially, I encountered smiles and greetings when I returned. However, when they realized that I was not just casually visiting, but seemed bent on rejoining the flock, there was an undercurrent of skepticism and distrust in the way I was viewed. It was subtle of course, but definitely there. I picked it up. You are seen as "tainted goods". Maybe, among other things, they thought that I - having left for so long and "gone worldly" - might "infect" the innocent ones.

I will continue my sharing later. I just wanted to give you some reaction.
administrator
Site Admin


Joined: 15 Nov 2003
Posts: 48

PostPosted: Sat Apr 24, 2004 11:17 am    Post subject:

NOTE: Two posts were made here by Bhagirath who did not have permission to post here. The two posts were therefore transferred to the "XBK discussions" forum.

Last edited by administrator on Wed Apr 28, 2004 6:13 pm; edited 1 time in total
Paul



Joined: 13 Mar 2004
Posts: 72

PostPosted: Sat Apr 24, 2004 1:31 pm    Post subject:

LOL....poor Bhagirath....better luck next (life) time Smile Admin, I can't fault your thinking.....and I'm glad I made the cut Smile

Isabel:

Quote:
I concur that it was a wonderful experience, though I do think I picked up a few hang-ups in the process. I struggle mostly with the void left by my very active spiritual life as a b.K. I miss having that level of spiritual engagement and am not sure where to turn to find it.


Its natural for you to feel that void. Its like the withdrawal pangs that someone who has just given up smoking feels. After all, as they say, "nature abhors a vacuum". So, that empty feeling is to be expected. It comes with the territory (of being an XBK). But Atma is right: what's done is done and we can never be "innocent" again.

It think that our participation in these forums is a form of reaching out to fill the void. Its important to know that we are not alone. Even though these discussions are in cyberspace, to my mind, they are a form of communion and fellowship. An XBK satsang if you like. Of course, I don't mean to suggest that this alone can fill the void....but every little bit helps. Maybe in later "instalments" we''ll see how Atma managed to fill (or minimize) the void

I agree with Atma's view that going back to the BKs one last time, for a sense of completion, may be the way to go. However, as Atma said, you alone have to be the judge of that. If you decide to take that route, be prepared for the chilly reception Atma mentioned.
kyra



Joined: 19 Apr 2004
Posts: 66

PostPosted: Sun Apr 25, 2004 4:44 am    Post subject:

im pretty lucky in that i had a really good experience of the BKs, it just that i felt so guilty because i didnt feel the pull to follow the path in the way they thought people should. basically I HAVE taken all the best bits which fit me and let go of the things that didnt. besides i really hate being unhappy and miserable Laughing and i cant be of much help to myself or anyone else if im in that state of mind.

i can see why the BKs do the things they do, and i see how much good they do for people (they pulled me out from the gutter and showed me a better way anyway and i am grateful for that) however realistically the lifestyle isnt for everyone and if u dont follow all the rules it doesnt mean your going to burn in hell/or wash floors in golden age either. when i was young i always asked my mother to take me to church because i wanted to find God, learn about him and get to know him. All they talked of was Jesus this and Jesus that and i was like yes thats nice but what about GOD? they said yes well through jesus... blah blah blah... YES but what about GOD how to I get in touch with him/her/it??? im so glad to have found that connection through the BKs.

I have found a relationship with God directly and not a day goes by that I dont remember him or talk to him/her/it (i just say him because its easiest). Its not like Ive officially said OK everyone im not a brahmin now, here are my white clothes, shawl and pin (hehe Laughing ) i just do my own thing now and keep in touch now and then with the centres and my friends ive made over the many years of being fully involved. im not quite sure how to bring it up with them, in fact as I write this im not even sure how to word it, what do you say? 'im not a brahmin anymore'... 'i dont want to follow shrimat i dont believe in...' ... i wonder if they change away from me and see me as not worthy of being around them anymore (so now im not godly company Rolling Eyes ) i guess in reality if they were like that then they were not real friends to start with.

the bottom line is im so much more happier now. its very important for me to be truthful to myself and do what feels right, NOT because im lazy or I want to "indulge in SIN" (i still dont drink, smoke or eat meat because *i* CHOOSE not to)

when i read the Murli I really question who is writing it. The god I believe in wouldnt say you cant hang out with people who are not brahmins because they will corrupt you.., oh i dont know now its still all rather confusing and Im still sorting things out in my head. this lifestyle has been part of my life for a long time and its going to take time to find my way back to the place i want to be. thank you all so much for your warm welcome, i am really glad to have others who are going through (or have already) the choice of leaving the BKs because it just didnt feel right (if i may assume that for most).
Atma



Joined: 26 Feb 2004
Posts: 98

PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2004 8:28 pm    Post subject:

kyra wrote:

Quote:
I HAVE taken all the best bits which fit me and let go of the things that didnt.


That snippet from kyra reminds me of another quote. I have a lousy memory but, for some reason, something I read in a Readers Digest more than 30 years ago has stuck in my mind. I will share it here with you, since it is a part of my post gyan strategy / philosophy of life. I believe this was in the "Quotes" section of the digest:

Quote:
Life is the art of making a bouquet out of those flowers within reach.


Its basically the theme of the American song which says "accentuate the positive". Note the words in the quote that I have put in bold. Living positively is an art.....ie it takes some skill...and, with practice, one can become more skillful at it. In the quote, "flowers" would be those things that are positive elements in one's life. So our "flowers" could include * our positive relations with family and friends. * Our skills and abilities * The things we enjoy, that give us pleasure - such as books, music, movies, travelling, dining, internet, execise etc * Having passion in the work we do, doing it well and enjoying it * Other spiritual, metaphysical persuits.....and so on.

A bouquet: this means bring together all the positive elements. I suppose that a BK analogy would be "Pick the virtues of others". In this case, we pick, bring together and emphasize the positive aspects of our own lives.

those flowers within reach: This is important. We should not get obsessed with things that are not within immediate reach. Its fine to have medium and long term goals but getting fixated on them is a sure recipe for anxiety, frustration and depression. Take one day at a time, stop and smell the roses, do your best and leave the rest: then, whatever will unfold will unfold. Remember the serenity prayer:

Quote:
God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.


OK, thats it for tonight's instalment.

Take care.
kyra



Joined: 19 Apr 2004
Posts: 66

PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2004 11:07 pm    Post subject:

What a great post Atma Very Happy

I really like that analogy!
administrator
Site Admin


Joined: 15 Nov 2003
Posts: 48

PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2004 6:15 pm    Post subject:

Bhagirath and Zhukov have now been invited to contribute to this "XBKs ONLY" forum.
Atma



Joined: 26 Feb 2004
Posts: 98

PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2004 8:47 pm    Post subject:

See Bhagirath? Good things come to those who wait Smile Welcome to the club. You too Zhukov.

kyra, you're making me blush Embarassed Anyway, thanks for the compliment. I guess what I wrote reflects that familiar refrain: "Count your blessings"

The exclusive club is growing, but it looks like some club members have gone on "sabbatical". I am sharing, as requested, but I hope I don't end up talking to myself Smile
isabel



Joined: 24 Mar 2004
Posts: 39

PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2004 10:54 pm    Post subject:

Quote:
The exclusive club is growing, but it looks like some club members have gone on "sabbatical". I am sharing, as requested, but I hope I don't end up talking to myself


Embarassed I guess I might be one of those folks on sabbatical Embarassed

And Paul, it's great to hear from you again! I've missed your input in the discussions.

Paul and Atma, I've been thinking over your statements regarding 'innocense lost' and about what it would be like to revisit the B.K.s. Wouldn't it be nice if I were someone who had evolved spiritually to the point where B.K. reactions didn't bother me one bit...I'm not there yet Wink

But the more I interact with you all, the less I feel like going back to the B.K.s is something I need to do. You're right Paul, the forum does close up a bit of that void. I will return to an area with a center in a couple of weeks & I'll just let the possibility rattle around in the back of my mind.

Casa had an interesting post in the main forum. He said he thought most B.K.s had a crisis of faith after the newness wore off, then some stayed, some didn't (rough paraphrase). So that perhaps this feeling of loss is shared by B.K. and XBK alike.

I wonder what makes us different then, why did we leave? (I can just imagine the smug b.k. response that we are clearly not of the golden age, that's what, yadeeyadeeeya). We are clearly all spritual people, so it wasn't for lack of contact with that realm. There are a lot of smart B.K.s out there, so I don't think it's our greater powers of logic that turned us out. What do you think determines whether or not someone becomes a stayer or leaver?



Kyra, I like what you say about the B.K.s having been the vehicle that allowed you to meet God. That's much of what they were for me too. I'd like to think that's what 'God' would want most and perhaps solely for us to get from our participation in an earthly spiritual organization, as opposed to our learning whole laundry list of rules.

Atma, your last post was indeed wonderful. I think I'll churn that for awhile Very Happy
kyra



Joined: 19 Apr 2004
Posts: 66

PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2004 1:01 am    Post subject:

[quote="isabel"]
Quote:
I wonder what makes us different then, why did we leave? (I can just imagine the smug b.k. response that we are clearly not of the golden age, that's what, yadeeyadeeeya). We are clearly all spritual people, so it wasn't for lack of contact with that realm. There are a lot of smart B.K.s out there, so I don't think it's our greater powers of logic that turned us out. What do you think determines whether or not someone becomes a stayer or leaver?



(The following is just my opinion and I am in no way speaking on behalf of anyone else but myself and my views):

The life of brahmin is a rather different one. I donít think it makes us different in a negative sense. The only difference between myself and them is that I choose not to live a lifestyle when I do not fully believe in everything that I am expected to.

I choose not to live the lifestyle because in doing so I felt guilty because there are elements of the lifestyle we are expected to believe/follow and if we do not we are told we are tainted and impure, and this guilt is something I choose not to live with (especially when I donít believe its coming from God, its just views of BKs who write & teach that stuff because its what they think others should be doing), therefore I have chosen to take the positive elements and beliefs of the Brahma Kumaris organization and adapt them into my lifestyle which still focuses very much on a spiritual lifestyle and godly service, yet without all the politics and double standards I often experienced while living as part of the BK group. I guess I am a bit of an x-Bk renegade Wink

It also doesn't sit well with me that if you call yourself a brahmin and are seen to do lots of service - donate lots of money - teach etc etc that you will be a king or queen in the golden age and worship worthy. It also doesnít sit well with me all this promise of inheritances etc. It almost makes God out to be some kind of salesman selling ice to the Eskimo's... Surely it makes sense to me that if the Golden Age is so perfect why in heck do we need kings and queens to worship anyway when we will all be in a state of perfection and God-like anyway??? Surely in the Golden you can scrub your own dang floor if it got dirty (which leads me to asking why things would be dirty if life is pure anyway)....

All I can say is that I would strongly inform anyone reading this that in this lifetime you have to do what is true to yourself. I think you know in your heart when youíre on the right path and when youíre straying off that onto something thatís not for you.

I believe that we are souls and that we do experience life in this body. I do believe there is a cycle of time, although I think 5,000 years is rather short for that cycle to start and finish and I am not even positive we do take 84 births. However in this one birth you are in now you have this spiritual sense of awareness and thereís no reason why you cant keep some of the positive elements of a brahmin lifestyle (and there are a lot of great things about that), but if you feel guilty and ashamed for things your not entirely convinced are evil and sinful (like sex for example) then donít allow yourself to feel that guilt because where is that instruction really coming from anyway??


Thanks for your time, Kyra
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