Today we had an interesting experience that I don’t think any of us were expecting. In the early afternoon we visited the Brahma Kumari Centre in the cyberabad area of Hyderabad. As we entered the large, mostly white complex, we were greeted by a few people dressed in completely white who led us upstairs into a room that resembled a lecture hall, but was filled with round tables instead of desks. After we sat down towards the front, a film started playing that had calming music and nature scenes with phrases related to meditation flashing up in front. Some of us did not know what to make of it, so we giggled out of nervousness. After the film, a woman [dressed in white] proceeded to give us a talk about the centre’s new age philosophy on meditation and the mind. At the beginning of the talk, she led us in a five minute meditation, which was very relaxing, but made me a bit sleepy throughout the rest of it. She spoke a lot about the benefits of meditation and in positive thinking. I found this to be insightful and mostly true, but only to a certain extent. At one point she made it seem as though the mind can solve all of our body’s problems. I agree that one’s mental state greatly affects what they can and can’t accomplish, but I think that it is not quite that simple. One aspect of the talk that I found interesting though was the emphasis on spirituality and not religion. I had sometimes heard of people referring to themselves as spiritual and not religious, but I never fully knew what that can entail. Even though some of the centre’s philosophy seemed questionable and a little “cultish”, I appreciated their emphasis peace and mental health.