By September 21, 2013 Read More →

Carolin Diana – Prakashmani Scholar Runner up

Carolin Diana Fraude

AshaBeing brought up by parents who were school teachers, values and education have always been a strong focus in my life. Socially and financially the family was a safe, comfortable space to grow up. As a scout, and later on after becoming politically engaged in the antifascist autonomous movement and green party, my recognition of environmental problems and disadvantaged groups grew. Through music, demonstrations, exhibitions etc. I tried to make people more aware of the state of the world and the need for a collective change. One day during a violent scene of a demonstration against atomic energy, I had a key experience that triggered a fundamental change in my life. I questioned the sense of life and how it could be possible that so many demonstrates intend to achieve something good, but have no chance of succeeding. Watching a young, very provocative and violent policeman I suddenly looked through his “mask” and realized that he could be my brother instead of an enemy. In that special moment whilst looking in his eyes, a tremendous, unknown power of pure love was flowing through me. In the midst of all the chaos around both of us, we kept looking in one another’s eyes. His face changed completely and finally he wasn´t able to do his job anymore in this demonstration. This incident was a completely new experience for me. I understood that a better world wouldn´t be created through political actions but on a very different level. After completing school, at the age of 19, my sister and I went to India for three months and by chance we got to know the Brahma Kumaris Headquarters in Mt. Abu. The knowledge and meditation practice touched us so deeply that we stayed for two months in Mt. Abu to study Raja Yoga Meditation.

Essay By
Spiritual Power

When I saw Dadi Prakashmani for the first time, I neither knew who she was nor did I know much about the Brahma Kumaris. Her `introduction´ to me was beyond words or rational understanding, but started with a subtle but very clear pull that literally woke me up from my sleep. I was traveling through India with my twin sister. On the 8th of August 1998 we reached Mount Abu in Rajasthan, a place that is famous for beautiful temples. There we got to know the Brahma Kumaris Headquarters and started the Raja Yoga meditation course. A few days later, early in the morning in the middle of my sleep, I suddenly woke up and felt a strong pull to go outside. I walked to Om Shanti Bhavan, a hall of the Brahma Kumaris with a capacity for around 1000 people. Reaching there I was surprised when I saw a good number of people sitting inside Om Shanti Bhavan listening to a lecture. Being a bit shy I entered secretly from the last door at the back of the hall.

When I entered I was very touched by the light and energetic atmosphere in the hall and I felt a deep sense of happiness in that moment. I had been in this hall before, but it was different to this moment, and so I was curious about who had created this beautiful energy by which I was pulled so much. From the very back I couldn’t see much of the person sitting on the stage. I also couldn’t understand this woman either as she spoke in Hindi. I slowly started to walk to the middle of the hall, noticing the love, joy and interest with which the people listened to the woman. It seemed to me that she was the source of this beautiful, unifying and light atmosphere in the hall and I enjoyed looking at this woman whom I later got to know was Dadi Prakashmani.
Interested, Available and Respectful

When I had started to attend the morning classes, I struggled with the speed in which Dadi Prakashmani would read the end of the spiritual class. I wanted to take notes and was a bit slow as my English wasn´t so fluent. Dadi Prakashmani must have recognized that I had a problem in that moment during the class and shortly afterwards a young girl came to me saying that Dadi wanted to know if I had any problems. I explained that I couldn´t follow the last part of the class as I wanted to take notes. The next day, Dadi Prakashmani read out the morning class very slowly for me. This little incident showed me her true interest in the wellbeing of each one, no matter who it may be, even if it´s someone new and even if it´s only a very small matter. It is known amongst the BK students that sometime after the morning class or during the day Dadi would sit in the courtyard of Pandav Bhavan, where she lived. Who ever wanted to meet her could just go and speak to her. Even in the early morning before the class, BK students used to go to her room and meet her whilst she was still getting ready. It didn´t seem to disturb her at all and she continued to do her hair or put on her socks in front of others. Despite the amount of responsibilities she had, she still demonstrated a great deal of availability on a daily basis. In relation to Dadi Prakashmani´s style of leadership, I understand that her availability is an expression of many virtues. It was definitely pure love and respect for each soul and true interest in each matter of serving the world.

Teaching by Her Being

I personally learn most from being with someone and observing him or her – much more than listening to someone’s lecture. This was, for example, when I did the Raja Yoga course. The information I received was absolutely fascinating and logical to me and the meditation experiences were beautiful as well, but what I valued the most was the opportunity to spend time with my teacher and with the BKs during the day and experience how this spiritual knowledge could be applied practically on a daily basis. In school and university we learn the theory of something, but it often doesn´t have much of an impact. Such an outstanding living example like Dadi Prakashmani was able to show wisdom through her being and deliver, even in very little incidents, the most meaningful experiences to others. Dadi was an exceptional and inspiring teacher by being an authentic example and friend. In this way she never forgot, no matter how much there was to be done, that most important of all is to stay true to God’s spiritual values and teachings.


I heard several times from people, that during meetings Dadi Prakashmani would listen carefully and wanted to understand what each one had to say. She had an attitude of valuing each ones contribution, no matter if he or she was young or senior. Receiving such respectful attention, everyone was also very open to her suggestions.

Together with unshakeable faith in God she also had deep faith in the capabilities of others and conveyed such an attitude so that people could feel her faith in them and felt inspired and encouraged to contribute their best. Dadi´s appearance was remarkable, bright and shining and her manners were natural yet full of dignity and royalty. When she entered a room, she filled it with her very presence and like magic put smiles on the faces of those who saw and watched her. Like the founder of the Brahma Kumaris, Brahma Baba, she was able to deal with everyone in just the right way: she played and laughed with children and knew how to receive and interact with high level businessmen or politicians on every level. There was a natural balance of love and power, of sweetness and determination in her nature. No matter what position someone might have had, everyone was fascinated by her personality and attracted by her happy, light and lovely nature – she tied a bond of love which held everyone in this huge organization together as a big family.

Love for service

I remember when Dadi Prakashmani had gone to visit the Global Cooperation House (GCH) in London. It may have been her last visit to GCH. She was sitting on the stage next to Dadi Janki, the second administrative head of the Brahma Kumaris at that time. When Dadi Prakashmani met all the BK students in the auditorium, she was deeply moved and said that she wished she would have done such service like Dadi Janki had done, having established such a powerful gathering outside of India, that is like Madhuban, the headquarters in India. Dadi said this from the depths of her heart and meant it. It touched me very deeply, because the way Dadi Prakshmani had served the world was unlimited and I could not imagine what she could have done more. To me this showed her deep love and desire to serve the world, but also the deep regard she had for the service others did. She would never have been able to be jealous.

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