More BK academia: Dr Binny Sareen & Prof Frank Whaling

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More BK academia: Dr Binny Sareen & Prof Frank Whaling

Post31 Jan 2013

Another case of the Brahma Kumaris producing their own self-flattering academia ... for the lack of any non-BK academic doing it. Naturally, non-academic BKs tend to document step the BKs don't want ... but, hold on, what has Frank Whaling written?

BK Binny Sareen was awarded a Ph.D in English and the occasion heavily milked by the BKWSU at various locations. Binny Sareen is also a 'Manager of Public Relations & Mass Media' for the BKs up at Mount Abu and was brought up at the Brahma Kumaris in Mount Abu since her childhood. Do I sense a slight conflict of interest here!?! The link is to a Jayanti-esque meditation version of her work.

In a collegiate manner I contacted Binny twice to gain a copy of the book for peer review ... unfortunately, the only thing she had in heart was to invite to go and buy one from the BKWSU bookshop.

Actually, I think there is a slight twist of facts here because Stephan Nagel, aka BK Surya Bhai and the first Western BK, was actually the first BK academic to gain a PhD in BK studies with his book/thesis "Brahma's Creation Secret - the Hindu Reformation Movement of the Brahma Kumaris" but what the BKWSU is saying is that Dr Binny was the first to gain a PhD in English, not just a Ph.D. Binny was also beaten by BK Tamasin Ramsay and here "Custodians of Purity: An Ethnography of the Brahma Kumaris".

Is it not just a little too easy for the BKs to write PhD on themselves?

Binny's topic was "The Literature of Brahma Kumaris - A study in the Renaissance of Spirituality and Universal Human Values" and it has gone straight into the BKWSU bookstore to be sold as a service device for the BKWSU. She now joins the other two BKs, Surya and BK Tamasin Ramsay who have taken their religion and turned into an academic career for the cults and their own benefit.

At the same time, Dr Frank Whaling, a long term BK contact soul in Edinburgh, has also completed his book 'Understanding the Brahma Kumaris' (Dunedin Academic Press, Jul 2012 - reviewed here by BK PR supremo Neville Hodgkinson).

Frank Whaling was so close to the BKs in Edinburgh that they consider him likely material to become a BK, although he never did, and there was much speculation to the effect that he was a "Brahmin soul" at the center. What little I have seen of it so far, appears to suggest he has recycled much of the BKs own inaccurate and mythologised versions of events. I first contact Dunedin Press about the book back in 2006/2008 but, surprisingly considering the material we have found here, we never heard from him whilst he was doing his research.

I look forward to read it. The publisher claims he applies epoché ... the suspension of judgment or act of refraining from any conclusion ... in order to understand the movement from within. Or as the BKs say, just "willingly suspend your disbelief" in order to accept what they tell you.
Dunedin Academic Press wrote:Through phenomenology the author attempts to ‘get inside’ the Brahma Kumari tradition and to see that tradition from the inside. Phenomenology involves firstly putting one’s own world-view aside in order to understand the world-view of others. Applying ‘epoche’, to avoid bias, and ‘empathy’, to engage sympathetically, the objective of this study is to understand, as far as is possible, from within.

Yes, BK Binny joins the list of Brahma Kumaris wearing funny hats and being given worthless awards by bored and glum looking Indians and got to show their spirit guide BapDada the book for a special blessing of it. Frank, emeritus professor of the study of religion at University of Edinburgh, must be jealous ... but then he had many a good time and the odd free lunch at the BKs.

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BKWSU wrote:First time in the history of Brahma Kumaris PhD degree is honoured in subject of Doctor of Philosophy in English, A thesis on The Literature of Brahma Kumaris - A study in the Renaissance of Spirituality and Universal Human Values. A spiritual get-together was organized by the renowned people of Mount Abu to celebrate this event in Hotel Hillock on 6th March 2011. to honour this work dedicated in the noble mission of Brahma Kumaris in reawakening the spirit of Spirituality & Universal values in Humanity. In the gathering Chief Guest, Addl. Chief of Brahma Kumaris, Dadi Ratan Mohiniji, most honoured guests - Rajyogi Brahma Kumar Nirwair, Secretary General Brahma Kumaris & Managing Trustee, Global Hospital & Research Centre, Shri Ram MeenaJi, I.A.S., Collector Sirohi, Shri P. Mallana Goud, I.P.S., Director, Internal Security Academy, Mount Abu, Dr. V.S. Patel, PhD guide, North Gujarat University, Patan, Dr. Sharad Shrivastav, Udaipur University, Dr. Partap Midha, Director, Global Hospital, Sister B.K. Jayanti, Director, Brahma Kumaris, Europe & Middle East, London, B.K. Karuna Bhaiji, Director Multimedia, Brahma Kumaris, heartly congratulated & appreciated Dr. Binny Sareen for this significant achievement for synthesizing spirituality – values – meditation on Universal platform.

Dr. V.S. Patel and Dr. Sharad Shrivastav being expert PhD guides and examiners of this research work said that this work on the subject of Spirituality & Universal human values is the pioneering work of its kind & is need of the present hour. It is a comprehensive and thorough study of spirituality which includes history of Brahma Kumaris and its position in the world. It is an excellent contribution signifying to the purpose and functioning of Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual University in the world. It is like a holy scripture which has regarded root of spirituality and values in major religions and the leading religious founders and spiritual leaders of the world. It appears to be a real milestone for the Brahma Kumaris in the field of literature and in content for those who desire to pursue study of Brahma Kumaris literature and practice of values and spirituality. On this occasion B.K. Binny, Manager Public Relations & Mass Media, Global Hospital, Mount Abu was felicitated and honoured by certificate and degree of Doctorate by Dadiji and honoured guests. Shri P. Mallana Goud placed Dr. Binny Sareen’s record and deep appreciation and sincere thanks to her, for the keen interest in conducting spiritual empowerment training to Internal Security Officers from all over India since last 15 years. Mr. Goud honoured Dr. Binny Sareen on this occasion on behalf of Central Reserve Police Force & all ranks of academy with a memento as a token of recognition of her esteemed and selfless service to the Academy.

Declaration of Doctor of Philosophy on this subject is forwarded with compliments from North Gujarat University to 20 major Educational institutions, Universities, Education Dept., Commissioner, Secretary and University Grant Commission of India. The main organizer of this esteemed event Shri Sunil Agarwal & Smt. Gita Agarwal, Hotel Hillock & all those who contributed and co-operated in this noble task were honoured in this event. Eminent people of Mount Abu including heads of various organizations, Officers from Army, Air Force & Police, Global Hospital Staff and Senior BK’s from Headquarter & overseas centres also participated.
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Re: More BK academia: Dr Binny Sareen & Prof Frank Whaling

Post01 Feb 2013 publlishes BK Neville Hodgkinson's review of Professor Frank Whaling's book.

I would not be surprised to discover Neville had been involved in handling of Frank Whaling as an "IP" (important person) "contact soul".

Apparently its the "critics" who are the fundamentalists ...
BK Neville Hodgkinson wrote:Warm-hearted and balanced

As an initial isolation slowly receded, feminine leadership qualities contributed to exceptionally effective administration as numbers grew, Whaling writes. He also highlights the importance of service abroad in bringing contact with other religious traditions and systems of thought, and in extending help to people in need across the world. Contacts with global figures, publication of books, and establishment of retreat centres all furthered a process of growing involvement in wider society, including interfaith matters.

This ability to adapt to changing world situations is contrasted with the "fundamentalism" of some of the BKs' critics.

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