IIAS Newsletter 47 Spring 2008
The Indian-based BKWSU arose from a Hindu cultural base, but distinct from Hinduism. It began in the 1930s as a small spiritual community called Om Mandli (Sacred Circle), consisting primarily of young women from the Bhai Bund community of Hyderabad Sindh, now part of Pakistan. Since the 1960s the community has been known as the Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual University (BKWSU), translated from the Hindi, ‘Brahma Kumaris Ishwariya Vishwa Vidyalaya’. It is significant that the movement included a ‘world’ focus in its name, even though active overseas expansion did not begin until 1971.