Creating Sanskaras for the “Golden Age.”

When a new BK follower is born, one of the first questions this person may ask is: “Why do we have to follow all of these rules?” (Referring to waking up before 4 am, lacto vegeterian diet -avoiding onions and garlic and even radishes according to some – celibacy, avoiding physical activities supporting body consciousness, etc.)

One of the most popular and less controversial answers is: “To create sanskaras for the Golden Age.”

The belief: A Deity in the Golden age wakes up very early in the morning, does not eat meat or pungent vegetables like onions and garlic, does not have sexual activity and does not practice physical activities like sports. That deity however, is engaged in the arts so those activities are encouraged.

The ‘deity profile,’ has many believers within the BK system. It is hard to imagine that every BK could fit easily into that container, thus the label “numberwise” is used to describe that difference to fit “right.”

In my time as a BK, I practiced everything except being engaged in sports. I used to run almost every day. Even while I visited Madhuban. Running and other sports like bike riding ( a welcomed activity after long seating retreats in Peace Village; which has beautiful natural surroundings to enjoy mother Nature) and swimming gave me an outlet for the extra energy I had, even though; that could be considered “body conscious” activities.

Nevertheless, the benefits outweighed the drawbacks in my case considering my age at that time.

Now, with that experience I could say that “creating sanskaras” does not happen through practice of some activities or lack of.

In my BK days writing poetry once in a while, was the extent of “arts” for me. Now, away from the BK experience, I find myself interested in playing the acoustic guitar. I enjoy the peculiar sound coming from it and the feeling of upbeat relaxation . That new “hobby” did not appear out of some practice. Was it some inspiration or perhaps some late hidden sanskara? Well, it did not appear in my BK days.

However, whenever we want to suppress some activity that we used to enjoy for the sake of compliance to an ideal, then this could be self-inflicted violence.

That is what we may need to be aware of.

Sexuality does not cease to exist because we want to comply to some profile and stop “cold turkey.” Sexuality will come out some way; somehow, unless it is already a personal inclination to be away from sex whether naturally or due to some physical illness or psychological issue. A meat eater can stop eating meat because he wants to comply to a profile, but unless that comes from within, there is no hope for that “sanskara” to go away.

That is why is very important to cater to the individual, that is; to start the journey where the individual is at, rather than massifying things by asking him to DO things which may be out of his range.

At this point in my life, I do not practice any sports as my body has changed (Thankfully was around the beginning of the pandemic time, which affected the mobility of everyone) but I regularly do hatha yoga, isometric exercises and specially, pranayamas as their benefit is considerable at this time. As an aside, many Bks already practice pranayamas in India. This breathing exercise is specially useful for the etheric body. My diet is vegan and eat much less than my sports days. Food stays in my system longer than before. This lifestyle is not for everyone; but as Life changes, so I am changing with it naturally.

As the BK movement has reached the masses, perhaps it could be a welcomed change to stress their teachings in values and virtues, rather than fear based end-of-the-world philosophies and clerical, monastery like rules for all. After all, those virtues and human values are the ones that will benefit humanity, “creating” good karma for the follower. That is needed so Life itself can provide the necessary natural changes in that person’s sanskara.