British Asia News Network
By Sushma Lobo
London: On Sunday 4th November 2018 Brahma Kumari world spiritual University (UK) hosted and celebrated Diwali with a magical evening called ‘Diwali A Return to the Kingdom’.
The Brahma Kumaris are a worldwide family of individuals from all walks of life; they are committed to spiritual growth and personal transformation, believing them essential in creating a peaceful and just world.
The Brahma Kumaris is a socio-spiritual and educational institution of international repute. It has over 8500 centres in 132 countries with membership over 800,000 worldwide.
Acknowledging the challenges of rapid global change, they nurture the well-being of the entire human family by promoting spiritual understanding, leadership with integrity and elevated actions towards a better world.
Sister Jaymini opened the evening and welcomed everyone “Brahma Kumaris, we celebrate Diwali spiritually… Diwali is celebrated to go back to the roots of our spirituality, there are many facets of Diwali, the lights, the food, the colours, the rangolis the sweets the décor, fireworks new clothing all these things reminds us of something, so discover it this evening through the talk that sister Jayanti will be sharing”.
She introduced what Brahma Kumaris do here and worldwide being based in more than 120 countries, London being the main international co-ordinating office, they have been there since 44 years, and this is the first centre outside of India. Brahma Kumaris main teachings are to integrate spirituality into the practical life alongside your family, home, work and business. The teachings areto let the peace which you experience in your life and meditation be really experienced in your practical day to day life, promoting peace of mind and brings about great clarity in life and decision making.
The opening speech was followed by a beautiful introduction dance by Ragasudha Vinchamuri performing a Ganesha dance to welcome everyone. Ragasudha engages in empowering children and woman through training and teaching classical and folk dance.
During the evening a message was played by Dadi Janki who visited the UK twice this year, spiritual head of Brahma Kumaris worldwide from the Mount Abu centreage 103 years old and still going strong. In her video message she relayed how happy she was to hear that Diwali was being celebrated not just in India but all over the world. She wished everyone a happy Diwali…”what is meant by ‘Happy Diwali’ it is lighting the inner lamp, look at each other as being of light. Light the Lamp.”She continued by asking“what the conditions of being happy are? And answering she said….”Sweetness. Sweet words, humility, truthfulness, patience and sweetness” whilst closing her speech she says with a smile whilst serving the world she noticed that every festival of India is celebrated very wellaround the world.
As Diwali is an illuminating celebration of lights and good over evil, a candle lighting ceremony took place on the stage to bless the event with guest.Sister Jayanti (European Director for Brahma Kumaris), Sister Charu, Ratan Thadhani (trustee and chair of Brahma Kumaris, The Worshipful The Mayor of the London Borough of Harrow Kareema Marika, C.B. Patel (chief editor of Gujrat Samachar and Asian voice), Dr Geetha Subramanian (Asian Woman of achievers award winner), Soumendra Mahapatra, Ashok Kumar Chauhan (Armed forces Hindu network), Gul Chugani,(president of CBS Association)Lal Lalwani, Mr Kotha, Murli Mukhi, Vinod Thakrar, Mahendra Jadeja, Gyan Singh Rathore, Mayur Mehta, Pushpa Shivdasani, Mukesh Mamtora were all called up on stage to say a few words before lighting the candles.
The Mayor of Harrow Councillor Kareem Marikar came up to stage and gave a goodwill message from Harrow. “A very much diverse harrow with 20,000 gujraties and over 8,000 from the Tamil communities. The Hindu religion is very strength in harrow and we love the diversity and we love the respect for every community.
The guest gave speeches to wish everyone a Happy Diwali and they all lit the candles to fill the stage with abundance of light followed by a Bharat Nathan Dance(traditional dance).
The guest of honour at the tutorial was Sister Jayanti, who started with a 10 minute peaceful meditation to bring silence and peace to the soul… “Diwali is a time of reflection, a time to be able to go inside because Diwali preparation is a busy time… and so I am honoured that you have joined us today to experience something of that silence and time for inner reflection”.
She told the story of ‘Returning to the kingdom’, the kingdom within the soul; she briefly in essence took up the story of Ramayana and human emotions. She picked up not on the 14 years in exile, but the time at the end of exile with Ram, Sita and Lakshmana and finally when they are about to return to their kingdom suddenly something happens. Sita wanted to take the golden deer home. She connected this to the emotion, deception of the eyes simply because the eyes want, you see those shoes and you can’t rest your mind until you buy them, even though you have plenty of shoes in the closet. The story of Sita wanting the golden deer, sending out Ram and later sending out Lakshmana to help his brother. He draws a circle for her and asks her not to step out the circled line and she will be protected. Stepping out of the right code of conduct which is riotous, to keep her safe and protect her, when a beggar comes along and ask for help and asks her to step out of the circle to help. It’s the ego of theintellect at the moment that says I know better, yes I know I’ve been given instructions to stay put, and the ego takes over and she steps out. Sister Jayanti relates this to today’s life, a time of sorrow and suffering what brings us here deception of the eyes, deception of the ears and the ego of the intellect that pulls us out of our safety net into danger. In Ramayana its Hanuman who is the messenger of god who comes to save them.Destroying or beating the ego is what brings us back to our inner world of unbroken peace, pure love of light truth and love in our lives. Purification through yoga, meditation andrelationship of love that is able to destroy all negative and egos.
The message of Diwali she left everyone with is to bring backthe light of hope to people’s heart, old accounts to be settled and new beginnings, self-realisation and realisation of the inner being, wishing everyone a happy Diwali and Sal Mubarak.
The Brahma Kumari thanked all guest and the colourful and peaceful evening ended with a gift of Prasad, blessing card and a diary for 2019.