Posted by: ginalazenby | May 18, 2012

How spiritual wise woman Dadi Janki has inspired my transformation

Dadi Janki was in London this week and I made a special effort to come down from Yorkshire to hear her talk about spirituality and health. I have not seen her for a while as the 96 year old head of the Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual University (BKWSU) is now based in India, having been in the UK since the early 1970s.

Meeting my spiritual grandmother again after a gap of at least a year ….. I started to reflect on what I have learned from her during the nine years that I was first introduced to the BKs.

There is no doubt that I have changed significantly in the last few years ….. yes I know we all change as we grow older but I do feel that I have become somebody completely different. I do actually look different and photos of me a few years ago really do look like another me (everybody tells me, especially if they have not seen me for a while) but this external new-woman persona has only evolved from the massive internal shifts I have made. I did not set out to do any makeover (as I have done in the past). And I believe it is what I learned from my time spent at various BK events, workshops, retreats and classes that have been so transformative in enriching my inner world. It is hard to put it into words but it is my capacity for BEING that has been expanded and I say that from being ACTION WOMAN for most of my life. I have been through a period of extensive non-action and identity change that could have been truly devastating but I have managed to survive it in a very empowered way. Anything that happens in my life now comes as a result of thinking, feeling, being and visioning with some action to support it. This does take some effort but it is really more about grace. I can recognise the difference now because before I had a modus operandi that was founded on hard work, slog, sweat, challenge, problem-solving, stress and LOTS of activity. The more I did the more I expected to make happen. And so as I looked into the future with a desire to make a difference, somewhere, I could feel into just how much effort that it would take and I really did not feel up to the job. I could not see how anything could be crafted without massive effort and personal sacrifice. It was all I knew how to do. In a nutshell, it was the new millennium and I had run out of steam. From where I was standing, it looked like it was time for the younger folk to take over, the ones with all the energy who could do what I used to do!

When I took time to remember how I made things happen I had to acknowledge the cost to my personal health and well-being – the crippling period pain, the back aches, the depression, the mandatory massages and luxury spa retreats that would put me back together again ready for another round of super-human effort. In the end I had long periods of forced absence from work while I battled anxiety and overload and then got ready again to force myself to do what my soul was screaming at me was wrong. But I could not hear. Then of course, eventually,  I woke up. It was the early 1990s and I realised I had to do it all differently so that was the first reinvention …. the first of few more to come, and now I am in a completely new phase. I am calling it my wisdom phase. I finally got the lessons!  Meeting inspiring mentors and teachers like the beautiful people I have come to know within the Brahma Kumaris organisation around the world has been the richest source of tools that have guided me on my inner journeys. Dadi Janki, as the co-head of the World Spiritual University stands out for me as a supreme example of power from inner peace. Just being in her presence is healing and to hear her teachings and personal advice has sustained me in finding a richness within that allows me now to move through life with a minimum of stress and a maximum of faith, trust and inner knowing.

The wonderful thing about Dadi Janki is that she does not sit on a mountain top or hide out in an ashram to welcome visitors in private.  She travels millions of miles visiting many of the 8500 centres that the BKWSU now has across the planet and she is the source for huge initiatives and dynamic programmes that do great things towards changing the world. A true action woman but one who is the embodiment of grace.   She is an outstanding role model for women today and she started with teaching leadership in India in the 1930s – certainly not the easiest era, or place, to rise above the norm (Over 70 years ago!!) Think about it!

Do come meet her if you are in the south of England and can join me for a conversation with Dadi Janki on Monday May 21st in central London.  Find out more on the Facebook booking page.

Not on Facebook?  then email me.

About the Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual University (UK):  The BKWSU teaches Raja Yoga as a way of experiencing peace of mind and a positive approach to life.   The University provides opportunities for people from all religious and cultural backgrounds to explore their own spirituality and learn skills of reflection and meditation derived from Raja Yoga, which will help develop inner calm, clear thinking and personal well-being.
Across the UK we work with national and local organisations and community groups in such areas as inter-religious dialogue, youth programmes, prison outreach, social work and women’s and men’s groups.  BKWSU (UK) was established as a UK charity in 1975 and charges no fees for any of its activities, being funded by voluntary contributions.   The University is part of a worldwide network of over 8,500 centres in more than 100 countries, the first of which was founded in India in the 1930s.


  1. Thanks Gina. Your honesty and openness of your own personal journey are truly healing – and what I needed to hear at this time – when I am gradually surrendering into my own non-action and change. Thank you for making it “alright” and helping me to choose my own freedom, i’m sure amongst many others.x

    • Lovely to hear from you and connect here Nickie. It IS hard to go against the grain when everyone else and every thing is pushing forward to some kind of goal. Honour yourself and take the time to go within and reflect on who you are (now) and what it is you need at this moment. Stillness is very sweet 🙂 x

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