Another BK suicide - open letter to Jayanti

for ex-BKs to discuss matters related to experiences in BKWSU & after leaving.
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rayoflight

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Re: Another BK suicide - open letter to Jayanti

Post18 Jul 2009

lokila,

The parallels you have drawn are interesting especially in regards to the role of a leader. Perhaps what is changing in our world is our definition of "leader." And, as the times change, so does our opinion of what a good leader is.

Humanity is on a constant search for itself. We are constantly evolving and changing which is a good thing. But until we figure out who we are (and I am not talking about "I am a soul") we cannot truly know how to take care of each other. We have learned that it is neither by being an egomaniac nor egoless/spineless but somewhere in between.

The middle way tends to be boring, but extremists have proven to be dangerous. Perhaps "boring" is under-rated or misunderstood.

It is unfortunate and heartbreaking when we hear of people who have fallen through the cracks. If the role of a community family is there to help each other, then suicides should technically not happen. I, too, have been so terribly depressed that giving up on life seemed like an attractive option. But I always remembered my family and the thought that I would be hurting them was stronger than my will to die. So I got over myself and reached out for help from those very people who gave me the will to live.

When you care about someone any signal of danger is enough to say, "I care." Love is an ideal and not always attainable, but caring is. And what we want are caring leaders which is sorely missing in the BKWSO.
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rayoflight

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Re: Another BK suicide - open letter to Jayanti

Post21 Jul 2009

rayoflight wrote: But then I remember we all have free-will and we make choices at every moment of our lives. We can choose to say, "I am trapped and must continue to pull people into the organization even though I know the truth," or we can find the courage to say, "I will not continue."

I just read something that supports this and would like to add it:
Swami Vivekenanda, Karma Yoga: The Yoga of Action wrote:Letting things that you know are not right go on without your intervention means you are not living a Karma Yoga approach.
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tom

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Re: Another BK suicide - open letter to Jayanti

Post15 Aug 2009

Today, a friend made me aware of a remarkable ex-BK website BKWSU Watch. I saw this article of the Admin of that forum on the first page of the thread about the tragic suicides of Ranjana and her Brother Sharad, and feel that I have become a decade older from grief.

In this article, the Admin of BKWSU Watch who knew Ranjana personally testimonies some other tragic facts before and after Ranjana's suicide. I did not know her first suicide attempt from the 4th floor of a building and her miraculous survival with injuries and her disappearance afterwards and some years later her final suicide from the 5th floor of another building and somebody identifying the photo of her corpse in a newspaper, learning that her corpse was lying in a mortuary since 3 months because nobody missed her. And two years after her suicide her Brother Sharad throws himself under a train and kills himself.

With regards and thanks to the Admin of BKWSU Watch, I am sharing this article with you because I think we missed some important facts which reflect the Seniors' irresponsible, inhuman, reckless behavior on the point. If they cared after the first suicide attempt of Ranjana and helped her, helped her desperate BK husband and her suffering BK Brother, I am sure both suicides and limitless pain of the parents could be avoided.

Now I am imagining the top Seniors of Madhuban and London carrying on their shoulders the bloody burden of all these tragic suicides and children abuse facts - looking into the mirror and asking "Mirror mirror tell me,who on earth is the purest, the most elevated divine being and the right hand of God?" The mirror answers: " You my-lady, of course."

From BKWSU Watch
Suicide – a Tragic Outcome Ranjana Patel RIP

London 1993: Ranjana was a strong, alive, creative spirit from Gujerat. She was a ’surrendered’ Sister – to newcomers she was one of the inner sanctum, part of the establishment. Ranjana had been “in Gyan” (knowing the Truth) for about 7 years.

Ranjana was a young woman. She fell in love with one of the other members. However one of the main tenets of the Brahma Kumaris is celibacy and she and he broke that vow. She was devastated by a profound sense of guilt and failure, the wanton loss of her eternal fortune, and now to spend eternity among the lower castes. This, because she had fallen in love.

Ranjana was so devastated by her feelings of guilt and loss she jumped off a four story building. Unbelievably she survived, although sustaining significant injury. Later she disappeared. Someone randomly identified a photo of her in a local paper. It was a mortuary photograph of an unidentified body that had been lying on a cold slab for three months unasked for. This time she had succeeded by jumping off a five story building.

The Brahma Kumaris teach that making love is like throwing oneself off the 5th floor of a building and that was exactly what Ranjana did. And she was right, nobody cared. Not even the BKWSU Seniors with whom she had lived and worked for years, the very people who had preached to her about love and kindness, and enlightenment and service.

BKWSU’s management were so indifferent to Ranjana’s death that no effort was made to ensure that others of their membership did not suffer so badly. Shockingly and incomprehensibly Ranjana’s Brother Sharad threw himself under a train a few years later. He was a member for many years but always believed himself not good enough – not pure enough, not yogi enough – the stress of the unreasonable expectations that had been imposed on him by the teachings of the Brahma Kumaris had killed him.

The BKWSU have no duty of care policy or exit strategy. After 70 years of enculting genuine, well-intended and intelligent people they have devastated thousands of lives whilst preaching the same spiritual rhetoric that killed Ranjana and Sharad and many others.

Our reason for being here is to attempt to persuade the management of the Brahma Kumaris to introduce an effective duty of care policy and exit strategy to transition and help existing and departing members. Their official line, in keeping with the Founders’ teachings, is that anyone who leaves is a traitor and should be treated accordingly. Thus far we have been ignored, as were Ranjana and Sharad.
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questionauthority

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Re: Another BK suicide - open letter to Jayanti

Post21 Feb 2010

To all BKs,

Wake up now before its get too late. Find your freedom, don't seek salvation from other human. What is the difference between Gurus and BK belief?

If you guys keep supporting organizations like this then soon you will find a new religion "BK religion" ... authority is already there in their system ... they control people and weak mind sticks to them under the impression that they have found GOD ...

Come on, give me break, Son cannot be Father of Father ... Brahma or whatever human was involved in finding God so called "Baba" has created a belief ... Freedom from the beliefs is must to find your own light ...
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jann

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Re: Another BK suicide - open letter to Jayanti

Post21 Feb 2010

Right on!!!!!

Welcome!!!
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rayoflight

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Re: Another BK suicide - open letter to Jayanti

Post24 Feb 2010

questionauthority wrote:Freedom from the beliefs is must to find your own light

Well said! And welcome :D.
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kanwardp.singh

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Re: Another BK suicide - open letter to Jayanti

Post13 Feb 2011

Strange one must be able to make their own decisons.
terry wrote:I am shaken by this news. I did not know Esther, but I understand the degree of pain that drives someone to suicide.

Anyone who reads this - if you are feeling despair or pain or alienation, if you feel you are failing - you are wrong, it's not you failing. These feelings are a natural warning system - the warning system is working. Your heart is asking you to change direction. Do not follow that feeling over the cliff. You are as precious as any one. The love, help and support is there. Just let someone know.

Please please please get in touch with someone, anyone. Whether someone from these pages, or your family, an old school friend - or call directory assistance and ask for a help line - they are there.

Don't wait for it to get so bad that you think death is the only option. It takes less courage to ask for help than you think. No one will think less of you. We all need someone to lean on sometime.
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kanwardp.singh

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Re: Another BK suicide - open letter to Jayanti

Post13 Feb 2011

Could anyone tell what is the main cause of all these sucides by BK Sisters?

Kindly mail @ kanwardp.singh@gmail.com

Thanks ,
Kanwar
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Mr Green

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Re: Another BK suicide - open letter to Jayanti

Post15 Feb 2011

read the forum you will be answered, no-one has time to make an email like that for you
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Mike26

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Re: Another BK suicide - open letter to Jayanti

Post07 May 2011

I am just catching up with some of the topics on this forum.

I came across this tragic news. I did not know Esther but had heard of her. As I understand it there have been several suicides within the BKWSU. I imagine ex members have been victims too.

Depression and despair go hand in hand with suicidal ideation. There is a lot of support outside of the organisation for those in this terrible condition but I remeber from my own experience how members are discouraged from turning to lokiks or Sudras for help. I imagine the internal support for those feeling suicidal are the centre instruments and the Seniors figures. What provision comes from them is debatable.

The isolation people feel in this position is indescribable. I suspect the toxic indoctrination of this organisation with all the features this entails, isoloation from previous avenues of support such as friends and family, the condemnatory dictates which suggest that to feel this way is the result of one's own negative karma, the encouragement that the strategy to overcome these feelings is simply to make more effort with Yoga and the Maryadas etc, is redundant as a means to address this problem.

People need to have access to reputable outside support.

I would encourage anyone on this forum either presently or in the future to seek the proper support if you experience low mood, depression or suicidal thoughts/feelings. I hope the following helps to signpost where you can reach support:

    Your Doctor is a good first step. GPs are trained to a point and most are able to recognise the signs of depression and suicidality. They also have access to the appropriate mental health services such as mental health teams, community psychiatric nurses, clinical psychologists, psychological therapies teams and psychotherapeutic resources such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.

    If you don't like the idea of the GP then there are private psychotherapists and therapeutic counsellors. One good resource is the British Association for Counsellors and Psychotherapists (BACP). You can look for a therapist in your area on their website.

    The other is the British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies BABCP where you can do the same. Cognitive therapy has a proved very effective with depression and suicide issues. http://www.BABCP.com
Organisation such as:

    MIND may also be able to help. T:0300 1233393
    The Samaritans are a long established helpline who now also offer counselling. T:08457 90 90 90
The link between depression and suicide is obvious but to help some classic signs of depression are:

    Low mood for most of the time
    Teariness and tears eaily triggered by even small events.
    Sleep disturbance - both sleeping too much or too little i.e. broken sleep patterns.
    Weight gain or weight loss
    Fatigue and loss of energy, including feeling easily drained by small exertion
    Loss of interest and pleasure in life.
    Withdrawal from social contact and increasing isolation
    Negative thoughts about oneself and life of the brooding or ruminating kind
    Thoughts of making a suicide plan (this is often a sign of very severe risk of suicide)
There is a stigma attached often to getting depression but please ignore this as depression and low mood are natural features of human experience. They are not your fault, they are not due to the sins of past karmas, and they are not signs of impurity of the soul. Depression can be overcome and tragic consequences avoided.

It seems clear that people cannot rely on these feelings being accepted as a consequence of BK lifestyle or proper support being offered, so look for support outside.
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because.parmeshwar

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Re: Another BK suicide - open letter to Jayanti

Post08 May 2011

Hi everybody,

I am visiting the forum after quite a long time.

It becomes very much difficult after stoping from going to BKs, to cope up with life. Everything becomes doubtful and suspicious. For me, it is now over one year after leaving BKs ... so my title can be changed to ex-bks, but life is still asking me many questions, the theory of Destruction is still there in my mind and I am finding myself unfit to cope up ... I am no more social/spiritual.

I AM NO MORE A BK

Where should I go .. ???
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Mr Green

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Re: Another BK suicide - open letter to Jayanti

Post08 May 2011

because.parmeshwar wrote:Hi everybody, i visited the forum after quite a long time. It becomes very much difficult after stoping from going to BKs,to cope up with life.

mike 26 has suggested some very good routes to help use them if you can.

For all it's worth because.parmeshwar, I have been through it big time. I don't know your history but I was a centre niwasi and when I left it took me a good 4-5 years to get over it all to any level. I attempted suicide many times and am still not free of such thinking,

I would say that your friends and family will offer you the best support you will get, ultimately, because they care about you and professionals ultimately care about their salaries.

Feel free to contact me by pm if I can be of any use to you.

Don't hurt yourself if you can help it, I will be cross with you if you do.
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Mike26

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Re: Another BK suicide - open letter to Jayanti

Post08 May 2011

Hi Parmeshwar

Firstly, apologies if this reply appears twice - still getting the hang of posting.

You have shown a lot of courgage and strength in leaving and claiming your life back.

Your comment at the end of your post 'where should I go' really struck me. You sound lost and struggling for direction now. I am not sure how much of a ressurance this will be to you but I do know this feeling of confusion and disorientation is very natural and will pass in time. Having spent so much of your time with the BKWSU it is easy to lose your sense of self because you tend to build a new sense of who you are based on what you are taught from the BK's, the Murli's and the organisation. So when you leave you begin to no longer idenitfy with them but this then leaves a feeling of 'who am I? This is a very normal and very human experience to have. It will get less in time.

To help you re-connect with yourself I would encourage you to review the person you were prior to joining the BKs. What were your interests, what did you like doing, what were your beliefs, values, opinions about things. What were your dreams, ambitions and hopes for your future. What picture did you have about your life previously. The more you can re-connect with this stuff the more you will establish a new base for your sense of who you are.

Please try to get support in this. Leaving the BKWSU and then being isolated is not helpful. You can take strength from others, family friends, even professionals if you need to.

The Destruction theme is difficult to let go of but again in time you will find it gets weaker. The future is out there for you, it is inviting you forward, you have shown the strenth to leave and you can channel that strength into claiming you life back, re-claiming the future and having the faith it will be there for you.

If I can offer any words of support, then please ask.

Best wishes
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khai1984

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Re: Another BK suicide - open letter to Jayanti

Post30 Jul 2011

Hi all,

I am the nephew of the suicide victim observed in this post - Esther Lung. She was my aunt, but although that was her family title, she was as close as a mother to me.

As I am not a member of the BK or a follower of Raja Yoga, please forgive me if I use incorrect terminology.

There seem to be a lot of speculation as to why she chose to end her life, from blame placed on the 'head' of the BK, to what she/the faith teaches.

It's nothing new to the world that religion, if "applied" correctly can unite nations, but naturally, its potential has always been there to cause the same degree of negativity, evident in extremist behavior and the intention of indirectly forcing someone into one's religion through fear, e.g. "you will go to hell if you do not accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour" etc.

Since we are all different and individual, I believe that no one religion is for everyone. One person may be better suited to a certain faith, if and when it generates positivity in oneself, and consequently those around them - that's perfect. But as soon as the person spirals down into darkness for whatever reason and becomes unbalanced, it's time to step back and assess the cause of that negativity in oneself. We are all human, and we all make mistakes, as well as lugging all the garbage we carry with us, e.g. insecurities, vulnerabilities, bad habits. It is dangerous to listen to just one person/group of people for spiritual guidance.

The other side of this immensely unfortunate situation is that, even I, a close family member could not have known of Esther's utmost personal thoughts about her own insecurities, and past events from as early as her childhood that could have started the ball rolling concerning possible self esteem issues. It may not have had anything to do with her following of Raja Yoga at all.

I have kicked myself and been through the what if's and 'shoulda woulda coulda's over and over again, but have learned during my "healing" of this incident, and tried to accept that one must feel the very depth of unimaginable despair, so much so that they are willing to override their body's natural reflexes and survival instinct, and end their life in such a horrific method; and no one else could've stopped them once they got to that stage.

Whatever Esther's reason(s), my only hope is that, now that she has left the physical world, she is happier and her soul can rest in heavenly peace.

I actually stumbled across this forum when I was searching for the holistic therapist whom Esther introduced to me a few years ago to reset my hips, I did not think or realize that there was this large community 'outside' who learned of this news.

I appreciate and on behalf of Esther, thank those of you who cared about her and still hold her in your thoughts and hearts, I am sure she'd be uplifted by your positive energies.

Rest in Peace,

Esther Yan-Yan Lung
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ex-l

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Re: Another BK suicide - open letter to Jayanti

Post30 Jul 2011

khai1984 wrote:The other side of this immensely unfortunate situation is that, even I, a close family member could not have known of Esther's utmost personal thoughts about her own insecurities, and past events from as early as her childhood that could have started the ball rolling concerning possible self esteem issues. It may not have had anything to do with her following of Raja Yoga at all.

First of all, please allow me to re-iterate everyone on this this forum's sadness and condolences at the loss of Esther. It affected us deeply as we know what the life within the Brahma Kumaris is like, the ridiculous stresses and demands it places on individual's minds (ridiculous not just because of the physical demands but ridiculous due to their ever shifting framework of false beliefs).

I did not know Esther but I have known many women like her within the BK movement. I am forced to presume that she had some kind of mental breakdown or was suffering from such deep stress and depression which went unnoticed and drove her to do what she did. Perhaps it was financial, perhaps it was a crisis of faith. I wonder if you could tell us to allow us some kind of closure on this issues.

I have no fear in stating that the Brahma Kumari leadership is deceptive, manipulative and absolutely self-interested, driven by their demented leader Lekhraj Kirpalani - even from "beyond the grave" through their spirit mediums they claim. This has been proven time and time again. In my opinion, a follower's life is only worth what they get out of them to keep their cult running; time, money and property.

Some of the first things they do is to

    a) separate individuals from their family and loved ones on the basis that they are impure, ignorant and a threat. "Devils" or "Untouchables" are the actual words they use
    b) separate individuals from other sources of help, e.g. counsellors and therapist, on the basis that they too are impure, ignorant and a threat and that the only true way of resolving personal problems is a further deepening of their adherence.
    c)
The leadership basically has only one cure for all problems ... "more Yoga", meaning more hypnogogic trance like meditation communing - allegedly - with their god spirit. A "god spirit" who has referred to individuals like Esther as "weak bricks" which explode while being "baked in the oven" of the BKWSU.

I mention this to counter your kindness towards the BKWSU. The BKWSU exploits individual's reasonableness towards other religion, hiding behind it to shirk off its responsibility and involvement from creating situations such as this one. I fear that you know little about the mental control and stresses placed upon individual adherents, especially those who step forward towards becoming "centers-in-charge" or teachers like Esther.

Again, I have no fear in stating that, on track record, the BKWSU leadership has little interest in individual's mental or emotional problems. These are just bundled in "weaknesses". The leadership has been criticised time and time again for its lack of "duty of care", and skills and trained professionals to deal with any such problems that arise.

The BKs are encouraged to deify a bunch of increasingly incoherent or senile, uneducated old women who seem obsessed with social climbing as being "the top 8 or 108 souls in the world" (spiritual far above Christ, Buddha, Freud, Jung, Gandhi, Einstein ... whoever you care to mention). They are worshipped as if they are the wisest, all knowing individuals in the world. It is to these individuals that followers in distress will be sent to. In my opinion and experience, their responses can be anything from random and illogical "fortune cookie" philosophy to bossy reprimands and humiliation. Their primary job is to keep the business of the religion.

I have never known them to refer someone in stress to a psychiatrist, not even to take a rest from the demanding routine of their cult. I, personally, think you would have to be a little mad to stay in the BKWSU, never mind lead it. For them, to leave it is to admit eternal defeat. They even give "business advice" or blessings.

Others might wish to comment on and criticise what I have written. Much has been documented on this forum about them, and other suicides.

I wonder if you can help us know and understand more about Esther as a person, how and when she got into the BKWSU, how far into the BKWSU she was, what changes your family saw in her and what might have been happening at the time she finally gave up.

I suspect she had no one around her to turn to at that time.
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