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BKWSU Poland

PostPosted: 17 Aug 2007
by ex-l
Oneway Traffic of Christianity or Problems of Brahma Kumaris of Poland

02 Feb 2002 By Agnieszka Koscianska, Warsaw

They stand at the fence, gazing at the house and its occupants. "We are treated as an exhibit", Halina says. "Sometimes they get confused and go away. Sometimes they act like they have other reasons to stand there."

After Sunday mass, people from the parish go on 'excursions', as Halina Paradela, the founder and spiritual leader of the Polish Brahma Kumaris community, describes it. Other students call them 'pilgrimages': Catholics coming to see what the sekta looks like. Brahma Kumaris' tactic to deal with this organized 'gazing' is to start conversations, to go out and talk to the people.

The Brahma Kumaris Meditation Centre is situated next to a Catholic Church in Rakowiec, Warsaw - a district just a couple of minutes' bus ride from the centre. The previous owner of the villa, built in the thirties, had no money for a major renovation and decided to give the house to Brahma Kumaris. They rebuilt the house and established a meditation centre where students can practice Raja Yoga, a technique of self-development.

This is when the conflict started. Now, the priest wants to take over the house. Apparently, he cannot tolerate a spiritual community with a strange religious tradition in the same neighbourhood as his church. He is starting an anti-cult campaign. During long sermons, he repeats his assertion that a dangerous sekta is living in the neighbourhood. In his opinion, Brahma Kumaris is a threat to children, and parents should take action to protect them. He claims that the sekta took over the house illegally and that they had no permission to rebuild the house. He collects more than seven hundred signatures against the sekta.

The "sekta" Brahma Kumaris was founded in 1939 by Dada Lekhraj. He established the spiritual university after having a series of powerful visions. In them he was given the mission to support women, so he nominated 12 young girls to administrative positions. Decades later the feminist ideology of Brahma Kumaris also expanded to the West. At the beginning of the eighties, the Brahma Kumaris community was founded in Poland. Its story so far has been very ambivalent: At one point, two agents from the secret services, who were actually employed to spy on the Brahma Kumaris, converted and emigrated to India to be closer to the main meditation centre.

Religious minorities are often accused of drug use, kidnapping and participation in international secret conspiracies and mental manipulation. The mass media and anti-cult organisations in Poland allow no exceptions.

So the Brahma Kumaris community became a target. People from the parish and journalists became curious about the house. Journalists working for tabloid press started to write articles about the dangerous sekta and the 'illegal building'. They accused Brahma Kumaris of kidnapping a 'little girl'. Her mother asked journalists to help her to get her daughter back from the sekta. They prepared a TV program. They did not say that this 'little girl' is a 28-year old woman who decided for herself to practice Raja Yoga.

In his sermons, the priest stresses that the sekta works in co-operation with the Devil. He calls the Brahma Kumaris community a Satanist sekta. When the community tries to settle the conflict he refuses to talk to them. Some people from the neighbourhood say that the main reason for the priest's anger is the fact that he wants to take over the house. They say that in the past he took over other houses illegally himself, destroyed them and built a huge church in their place.

The Brahma Kumaris community doesn't want conflict; they want dialogue. They talk to people, explain, reduce prejudice. This way the atmosphere in Rakowiec improves, but it's still not good. Once a man came and said to Halina: "I had to have a drink before coming here. Tell me, who are you really?"

Retreat in Poland with Sister.Maureen

PostPosted: 01 Oct 2007
by abrahma kumar
Rcvd via the BKWSU:

Retreat in Poland with Sister.Maureen

Retreat report:

Between 13th-18th of Sept. the 7th Regional Retreat took place in the beautiful setting of the Tatra mountains- South of Poland.

120 BK's and guests from Poland, UK, Lithuania, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Hungary and Serbia enjoyed a unique time of powerful tapasya, classes, workshops, cooking, eating Brahma Bhojan and viewing the beauty of the mountains.

Our special senior teacher this year was Sister Maureen from London. Everyone appreciated Sister Maureen easiness, openness and powerful classes. This year's special gift from Baba and Drama was the visit of Sister Brijben from GRC. Thank you Brijben for your wonderful quiet company which speaks more powerfully than words. We also had a galaxy of BapDada's special children:

From UK Sister Maggie Parle, br Paul Roche, Br Marek (GRC), Sister Sonia Kumar; from Lithuania Sister Egidija and 12 BapDada's stars, br Tony from Slovakia, Sister Klari & Marianna from Hungary, br Michel from Serbia and many others. Thank you all for contributing to the very special and powerful experience of the retreat.

Sister Maureen also gave alecture in Cracow, in the 14th century Town Hall on the theme
'Power of Change'.

Thank you all, looking forward to next year retreat.

Sister Halina and Poland nivasis

Om Shanti