Call For Media and Government Investigation

of Sathya Sai Baba And his worldwide cult, the Sathya Sai Organization

Archive for October, 2007

Sai Baba’s Airport Up For Sale, Reports Business Standard

Posted by Barry Pittard on October 31, 2007

Stop Press. It is reported that Sai Baba’s airport, which has long had capacity for international flights, is up for sale.

airport1.jpg

Especially when devotees see scenes such as a jumbo jet landing at the Sathya Sai Baba airport from Hong Kong, heavily laden with a panoply of sets and costumes to celebrate the Chinese New Year at Puttaparthi, they cannot but smile. The Kingdom of Sai is surely at hand! See, my article – Will World Accept Sai Baba? He Says Yes. Very Soon

Knowingly, they observe – Ah, Swami has promised to physically go abroad very soon. All these devotees coming from around the world, alighting at Puttaparthi by plane, and what with a railhead now all the way up to Puttaparthi, praise be – it cannot be long before the whole world accepts him as Lord of all!

Is Sai Baba Flying or Well Grounded

But rather, our reports are of greatly declining numbers visiting Sai Baba from abroad.

In the face of 7 years of the most intense exposure for former devotee forces both on and off the Internet, is the Sathya Sai Organization having a grave liquidity problem?

If it is, perhaps, big donors like minerals magnate James Sinclair, Isaac Tigrett, former creator-owner of the Hard Rock Cafe and the House of Blues, the Rai family in India, etc., who may have to come extra good for the sheer capital just to keep hugely costly Sathya Sai programs, building and plant going. But then, are these individuals free of their own liquidity problems?

When Exposed, Recruit – and Fast

Although it has long been ordered by Sai Baba not to promote, we saw his cult more recently hiring very costly venues – places where the rich are bound to feel comfortable, and perhaps generous.  Places such as the Sydney Superdome (built for the 2000 Olympic Games in Australia), historic town halls in major cities, Cooper’s Union (where Abraham Lincoln once gave a talk), New York; La Mirada Theatre; Los Angeles County, Hilton Ballroom; Sheraton Hotel & Towers, both Chicago; Copley International Conference Center, San Diego; etc. See article by Robert Priddy and Barry Pittard: Sai Organization’s Spending Spree In Super Dome, Sydney.

And See, news report just released. 

business-standard.jpg

Sai Baba`s airport up for sale

S Kalyana Ramanathan / Chennai October 31, 2007  

Trust puts floor price at Rs 600 crore 
 
The airport’s owner, the Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust, which manages the religious and philanthropic assets and work of Sri Sathya Sai Baba, has invited bids for it and put the floor price at Rs 600 crore. 
 
One big attraction of this airport is that it is only 70 km from Bangalore International Airport, coming up in Devanahalli. The vantage location will allow airlines to feed the southern sector, which currently has 30 major and minor airports. 
 
The other is that, to sweeten the deal, the Trust is throwing in 2,000 acres of adjoining land. 
 
The additional land could be used either for real estate development or for setting up a maintenance, repair and overhaul facility. 
 
The airport is spread over 450 acres. Its runway is 2,230 metres long and currently being used mostly by chartered aircraft. Of late, Kingfisher and Indian have been using this airport as a stopover for their Hyderabad-Visakhapatnam services. 
 
The buzz in the industry is that G R Gopinath, who pioneered low-cost flying in India with Air Deccan, has tied up with a Mumbai-based public figure to put in a bid. Gopinath, however, has denied reports. 
 
Besides, the buzz was not clear whether Gopinath, were he to bid, would do so through Deccan or on his own. 
 
It is being said that Dubai-based real estate developer Limitless LLC could also be in the fray. Limitless is an integrated real estate development company and a business unit of Dubai World, one of Dubai’s leading business groups. 

Further Reading

Sathya Sai Baba Exposure, Media Source List

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Posted in Neglected/sidelined News, News and Politics, Opinion, Religion, Sai Baba, Social and Politics, Uncategorized | 1 Comment »

Sai Baba Top Leaders Antidemocratic

Posted by Barry Pittard on October 31, 2007

For many years, Sai Baba and the Sathya Sai Organization have avoided critical scrutiny. With rare exceptions, such as retired world and Indian organization head Indulal Shah, and current world chairman Dr Goldstein, Covina, California, USA, his leaders and rank-and-file have long been forbidden to make statements to media.

bbc-clip-dr-micael-goldstein-gets-angry.jpg

Not that these leaders say more than a picayune amount (if at times angrily with a rage normally kept behind-the-scenes but caught here by BBC hidden camera), and we can document that they keep crucial information from their rank-and-file. Indeed, it does not speak well of Sathya Sai Organization members that they permit such extraordinary Soviet or Chinese style, authoritarian diktat – all the more reprehensibly so in those countries which are supposed to be relatively mature democracies.

No Reputed Scholars Need Apply

Well-funded, distinguished scholarly investigation is badly thwarted – no matter whether from one of the top half dozen universities in the world. (With permission of those scholarly sources concerned, I shall, as in past years, give details to any bona fide academic institution or scholar or to well-reputed, ethical media investigators). Other cases include the extremely limited cooperation given to world class investigators such Dr Erlendur Haraldsson, Professor of Psychology at the University of Iceland and the late Dr Karlis Osis of the Parapsychology Laboratory at Duke University, USA.

A difficulty of the Sathya Sai Baba exposé (and I think any major undertaking that lacks teams of researchers, analyists, librarians, etc) is proliferation – where welter and mass defeat best-practice materials organization and reader focus. There are certain articles which particularly should not, I think, get buried in the mass. One of these refers to a major departure from Sai Baba’s strict policy. Here, the second top official in Sai Baba’s large global Sathya Sai Organization, retired Indian nuclear scientist Dr G. Venkataraman, has spoken out specifically pointing to activity largely led by Robert Priddy, former head of the organization in Norway, and me, Barry Pittard. Our joint article: The Sathya Sai Organization’s Deception And Progaganda Exposed is detailed, in four parts, and contains many important hotlinks. Again, what cannot be shared because of immediate security issues can and will be related to bona fide investigators, particularly those which have the clout to stand up to Sathya Sai Organization threats, as have the BBC, DR (Denmark), SBS (Australia), Times of London, and, if to a somewhat capitulated extent – worried by the lawyers of one of its big, Sai Baba devotee advertizers – CanWest (Canada), etc. Happily, despite pressure from hundreds of Sai Baba devotees even prior to screening The Secret Swami three times, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) stated publicly that it had “trust in the professionalism” of its BBC colleagues.

Quote from the Article: The Sathya Sai Organization’s Deception And Propaganda Exposed

Dr G. Venkataraman and Sai Baba’s other top leaders have failed to look with even remotest objectivity at the reasons so many have left the Sathya Sai Organisation. Unconscionably and repeatedly, its leaders have refused a proper hearing to those anguished individuals and their families – or many former members – who have told them about Sai Baba’s sexual and other abuses. These leaders have not been truthful about the integrity of those former devotees and their rightful – and righteous – claims. This cultic aspect of the Sathya Sai Organisation alerts third party investigators, such as the world’s most responsible media, to the credibility of the former devotees’ claims. Journalists and their research teams quickly notice the secretive, evasive nature of Sai Baba and his leaders.

Leading media and other organizations such as UNESCO and the U.S. State Department have been very stringent in their expectations of sound evidence from organized former devotees around the world. Those who have researched the worldwide allegations against Sathya Sai Baba include the BBC, DR (Denmark), ATUL (Argentina), SBS (Australia), ABC (Australia), and print media in India, the UK, Europe, Scandinavia, Canada, Australia, etc. They quickly discovered for themselves the dishonesty and elusiveness of Sai Baba and his leaders. For example, this was why the BBC’s legal department permitted its The Secret Swami team to clandestinely film Sathya Sai Organization world chairman Dr. Michael Goldstein, of Covina, California, USA, allowing millions in many countries to see him show no respect for the accountability and transparency that citizens and responsible organizations today expect. They also saw Goldstein act nastily in a way that is the very antithesis of a spiritual leader.

It suits G. Venkataraman – who refers to Goldstein as “Brother” to suppress this telling aspect, as he also does with other self-damning statements by Sai Baba and American billionaire Isaac Tigrett, in The Secret Swami. The BBC interviewer Tanya Datta says to Tigrett, “But even if it was proven to you that Sai Baba was a paedophile and a serial sex abuser, you’re saying it wouldn’t change the fact that he is your guru”. Tigrett replies, “Absolutely not. Absolutely not. He could go out and murder someone tomorrow…”

Further Resources

BBC Caught UNESCO Head Bowing To Indian Government

The Secret Swami BBC Docu. Review. Condensed

Sai Baba’s ‘Minister of Propaganda’ Dr G. Venkataraman

View the Television Documentaries

The Secret Swami (BBC Television):
(154 MB, Broadband)

The Secret Swami
(23.3 MB, Modem)

Seduced (DR, Danish Broadcasting, Denmark’s national television and radio broadcaster):
(80 MB, Broadband)

Seduced
(21 MB, Modem)

Posted in Neglected/sidelined News, New Age, Religion, World Religions | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Sai Baba To Be Seen In Moon? But Where Was Moon?

Posted by Barry Pittard on October 26, 2007

Today’s blog suggests that Sathya Sai Baba has, leave aside his recent would-be moon sightings, not been particularly bright himself.

And how can he be so when the evidence – that can less and less be hidden from his rank-and-file devotees – suggests that he now suffers from senile dementia?

He has not selected the brightest moon. Nor  a cloudless evening by which his religious and spiritual élite of devotees could view him in the moon on October 4, 2007. Nor the brightest students of his alumni – who now rush to the Internet to prove that Sai mooning is not moon madness.

sai-moon-submitted-darpan-rane-to-sboi-group.jpg

Today’s blog suggests that Sai Baba has, leave aside his recent would-be moon sightings, not been particularly bright himself.

And how can he be so when the evidence – that can less and less be hidden from his rank-and-file devotees – suggests that he now suffers from senile dementia?

He has not selected the brightest moon. Nor  a cloudless evening by which his religious and spiritual élite of devotees could view him in the moon on October 4, 2007. Nor the brightest students of his alumni – who now rush to the Internet to prove that Sai mooning is not moon madness.

Why Seek They After A Sign?

Note, King James Bible. Mark 8.

“And he sighed deeply in his spirit, and saith, Why doth this generation seek after a sign? verily I say unto you, There shall no sign be given unto this generation”.

Note, the great Hindu monk, Swami Vivekananda:

“I look upon miracles as the greatest stumbling block in the way of truth. When the disciples of Buddha told him of a man who had performed a so-called miracle and showed him the bowl, he took it and crushed it under his feet and told them never to build their faith on miracles, but to look for truth in everlasting principles”

Note, writer of the ancient classic treatise The Yoga SutrasSage Patanjali:

‘These (psychic) powers of spreading or outgoing mind are injurious to contemplation”

SBOI (Sai Baba of India Group) Are Over the Moon

It is interesting to find highly unofficially-officially connected prominent Sathya Sai Baba devotees, including those who as students were long in his colleges and university, now enthusing about visions in the moon of their guru. That some get so extremely excitable as to support calls on the Internet for people’s experiences of Sathya Sai Baba induced moon visions, suggests that Sai Baba’s years of education have failed them. (Yes, by the way, their education was ‘free’ but many of their parents forked out a fortune in donations and supposedly incidental expenses).

Unless, of course, a moon vision of Sai Baba in the absence of a moon is one of his greatest miracles.

The astronomical moon chart for October 2007 sustains Robert Priddy’s point in his article Deceiving ‘devotee’ makes bogus image of Sai in the Moon. He writes “

“it so happens that the moon on October 23 was not full but was still ’waxing gibbous’, as can be seen from the following image taken from the astronomical website http://stardate.org/nightsky/moon/ This shows the moon two days before full moon. Full moon did not occur until Oct 26  04:52, according to NASA“.

Tonight, quite a bit of the eastern seaboard in Australia looks as though it may be in cloud. A pity. Otherwise, we’d get to see the moon at its brightest for 2007, a large brilliant perigree moon. If you were Sathya Sai Baba – who says that he is the fullest manifestation of God in mankind’s history – perhaps, you might:

a) have chosen the brightest moon for the delectation of your followers and

b) made sure to check with your inner Divine Weather Forecaster – because, on October 4, clouds descended over Puttaparthi obscuring the moon. Ah, that old devil cloud!  Or, let me be true to that marvelous American lyricist Yip Harburg with the Burton Lane tune:

I look at you and suddenly,
Something in your eyes I see;
Soon begins bewitching me.
It’s that old devil moon;
That you stole from the skies.
It’s that old devil moon in your eyes

Can Visions Be Deceptions?

In regard to later capers by some of Sathya Sai Baba’s well-known (many of them young) propagandists of SBOI (SaibabaofIndia), I leave Robert Priddy on his blogsite at http://robertpriddy.wordpress.com to make the point about whether one of a group of highly active supporters of Sai Baba, Darpan Rane, has fabricated a deception. Perhaps more interesting from the point of view of human growth to maturity is this:  Just suppose Sai Baba’s image were to have appeared on the moon. Then, let us ask, of what advancement would such a quaint manifestation have been to individuals collected around their guru? Or to all those international devotees so fervently racking up huge mobile phone costs trying to get the latest ‘moon miracle’ reports from their contacts at Puttaparthi? Or, much less, to humanity as a whole?

Form vs Essence

It is interesting that so many devotees have assumed that the vision apparently promised by Sai Baba via his chief translator and close servitor Professor Anil Kumar to many thousands of devotees gathered at his Puttaparthi ashram would entail seeing the form of Sai Baba on the moon. If they had consulted their timeless sacred classic, Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 11, they might have recalled that the vision granted by Sri Krishna to Lord Arjuna (vishwarupa or vishvarupa darshana) was of a very different character. It was not the form of Sri Krishna -who was right beside him! – but a cosmic vision of enormous range and depth. But what fools who rush all agape in to Sai Baba’s local airport would ever want something both noble and fiercesome as that?

  • Was it not enough for them to have seen it where they had daily darshan (sight) of him within his Puttaparthi ashram?
  • Why all the sensationalism, and indeed threat to life and limb, of thousands of devotees rushing headlong to his nearby private airport?
  • Is an unruly crowd, which police had great difficulty in controlling, likely to be in a fit state to receive a divine and blissful vision?

Certainly, if it was the form of Sathya Sai Baba that was so eagerly sought after by the crowds of devotees, they have entirely missed one of his most insistent teachings: that the form is not what is important – but the essence of the teachings, and that attachment to the form is deleterious to spiritual growth.

A Dotty Sai Moon, A Smudgey Sai Earth

Why then, after all these years, do his devotees, both old and young, quest so fervently after a mere rather dotty semblance of his form somehow superimposed on the moon?

And are they so uncertain of their faith that they need to grasp at ‘proofs’ of their guru’s divinity?

Certainly, Sai Baba’s so-called ‘spiritual’ museum exhibitors cater for such spurious ‘confirmatory’ evidence of their ‘Lord’s’ greatness. On show for example is what purports to be a NASA satellite photo of Sai Baba. It appears to some as though the very terrain for miles around his abode shows him watching over it. (I rather think that this is what Darpan Rane has in view and it harks back to material in Chapter 10 of (the late) Sai Baba devotee-journalist Shakuntala Balu’s book, Living Divinity. Here you are, dear Reader – but gaze on this divine miracle of Sai Baba, and, should you become fully enlightened, please remember me in your Will):

alleged-nasa-photo-of-sai-baba-looking-at-puttaparthi.jpg

Or, with no authentication by Muslim or any other bona fide scholars, you may like to take a trip to India to witness material in Sathya Sai Baba’s self-glorifying Chaitanya Jyoti museum at Puttaparthi that purports to be many clear prophecies of the so-called ‘Advent’ of Sathya Sai Baba – as the promised Medhi Moud. What? Allah in form?! See, HERE

Further Reading

Other articles on the Sai Baba moon issue at: https://barrypittard.wordpress.com are:

Sai Baba Fails to Grant Great Moon Darshan

Sai Baba Fails To Appear In The Moon, IANS Reports

Is Indian ‘Godman’ Sai Baba’s Moon Waning Still Further

Brian Steel: For a detailed, critical examination of the Medhi Moud so-called prophecy regarding Sai Baba, see The “Mehdi Moud” Prophecy Revisited

………

Robert Priddy:

Deceiving ‘devotee’ makes bogus image of Sai in the Moon

Oops! Apparently Sai Baba DID appear on the moon?

Why build moon rockets when Sai Baba has mantras?

More Sathya Sai Baba Moon Madness

Sai Baba postpones moon buggy ride

General

The Decline and Fall of the Showman Empire

The BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami’ – A Revision

For Online Viewing and/or Dowloading

The Secret Swami (BBC Television) Broadband 154 MB

Seduced (DR, Danish Broadcasting, Denmark’s national television and radio broadcaster):   (80 MB, Broadband)

Still More Video Resources

Right Hand. Sleight Hand. Watch Sai Baba Cheat With Sacred Ash (Film clip)

BBC and Other Film Footage Shows India’s Top Guru Sathya Sai Baba Faking Miracles

BBC Footage Exposes Fake Sathya Sai Baba Miracle « Call For Media and Government Investigation

Sathya Sai Baba Chief, Dr Goldstein, Explodes. “I am the consummate professional” (See Film Clips)

Raising ever more serious questions about how spiritual is the head of what Sathya Sai Baba has called THE divine organization in the world,

Michael Goldstein explodes with anger (710kbs)

at the BBC’s perfectly reasonable questions about accountability

Dr. Goldstein again reveals his higher self (1.500Kb)

Michael Goldstein and the sexual allegations (2,10 Mbs)

Michael Goldstein admits his view is merely a belief (456kbs)

Sathya Sai Baba Cult Exposure By Major TV Channel In Australia « Call For Media and Government Investigation

……………………………………………………

Note: Many surfers used the following search terms to get to the articles at https://barrypittard.wordpress.com on the Sai Baba moon issue:

sai baba moon miracle
sai baba appears on the moon
sai in the moon, October 2007
sai Baba on moon
baba in moon
sathya sai baba in moon
satya sai baba in moon
saibaba on moon
moon appear satya sai

sai baba viwa darshan

……….

The Public Petition   

Information on the Public Petition for Official Investigations of Sathya Sai Baba and His Worldwide Organization 

About the Petition For Official Investigation Into Sathya Sai Baba Cult

(Note: You may prefer to proceed straight to the Petition): Public Petition For Official Investigations of Sathya Sai Baba and His Worldwide Organization   

Posted in Neglected/sidelined News, New Age, Prophecy, Rationalism, Religion, Sai Baba, Skeptics, Spirituality, Theosophy, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments »

Exposure of Sathya Sai Baba. Media Source List

Posted by Barry Pittard on October 23, 2007

Media resources source list relating to the exposé of Sathya Sai Baba and his cult. Compiled by Barry Pittard: bpittard (at) optusnet.com.au

Note: Please kindly report any errors,  updates, or suggest improvements. This overview – not exhaustive –  was mainly compiled well before the BBC’s The Secret Swami, June 2004, and amid many far more pressing duties. I think I have sorted out Urls still alive and scrapped defunct ones. Some newspaper Urls are now not extant, or are retrievable by paid subscription, so in various cases I have relied on copies posted of these articles, usually close to the time when they were published in the media. Usually the postings were to former Sai Baba devotee websites – http://www.exbaba.com or http://saiguru.net . However, institutions, journalists, academic researchers and others in need of originals should be able to obtain those via standard resources, such as hard copy within the media establishments themselves.  Barry Pittard.

……………………….

The Week, June 20, 1993. High intrigue. Deadly power struggle in Puttaparthi

Indian Skeptic, 6(4), August 1993, Santa Claus in India. Piet Vroon, Santa Claus in India, from Dutch national newspaper De Volkskrant, Saturday December 5, 1992, translated J.W. Nienhuys

Sunday Magazine, December, 10-16, 1996. Brushed Under The Carpet. From five-page Feature: G.S. Radhakrishna, Sandhya Mendonca

Nexus Magazine, August-September 1999. Volume 7, Number 5. Sai Baba Exposed – Fraud, Fakery, & Molestation. Terry Gallagher, Hans de Kraker, Jens and Gurprit Sethi. Compiled from the website: http://www.myfreeoffice.com/saibabaexposed/ (no longer available)

Bild (Tr., German daily). August 21, 2000. Resident from Munich Ran Away From India – Guru all of a sudden wants sex. Wolfgang Ranft

Trouw (Dutch daily ), September 6th, 2000. The Downfall of A Guru Sai Baba, Koert van de Velde, tr., Ella Evers

Spiegelbeeld, (Tr., Dutch national Magazine) October, 2000. The truth will prevail. Matthijs van der Meer:

Noordhollands Dagblad (Tr., Dutch daily), Saturday December 9, 2000. Devotee becomes anti Sai Baba activist. Arthur de Mijttenaere

BBC Radio 4 – Sunday 19, November 2000 – 7.30 am.  Interview by Stephen Perry with:  David Bailey (UK), former closest Western devotee; Mick Brown, Daily Telegraph journalist (UK); Jed Geyerhahn (USA), Steen Piculell, Ashok Bhagani, Trustee, UK Sathya Sai Organisation

Daily Telegraph, Saturday October 28, 2000. Divine Downfall, Mick Brown

Tehelka, November 29, 2002.  Sathya Sai Central Trust: grab as grab can

Tehelka, November 29, 2002.  Is the Sai Baba’s empire beginning to disintegrate?

Tehelka, November 29, 2002.  Ashram Mandiram: fortress of solitude

India Today, Cover story: Sathya Sai Baba: Test of Faith.  Monday, December 4, 2000. Test of Faith, Amarnath K. Menon, Ashok Malik. SAI BABA:  A God Accused.  Vijay Jung Thapa with Lavina Melwani (New York), Syed Zubair Ahmed (London), Arthur J. Pais (San Francisco)

India Today, resulting letters to; archived

The Ottawa Citizen, Tuesday, December 19, 2000. The Man Believers Think is God. Bob Harvey

The Times of India, December 26, 2000, Sai Baba Lashes Out At Detractors.  B.S. Manu Rao

Toronto Star, January 14, 2001, Guru shrugs off sex allegations. Tom Harper

Vancouver Sun, February 27, 2001. Holy man? Sex abuser? Both? Douglas Todd

The Times of India, August 9, 2001. Tight security for Sai Baba after LTTE threat

Salon.com, July 25, 2001.  Untouchable, Parts 1 to 4. Michelle Goldberg

Times of London, Monday August 27, 2001. Monday August 27, 2001. Suicide, sex and the guru, Dominic Kennedy

The Times of London, Monday August 27, 2001. Three die after putting faith in guru, Dominic Kennedy

Times of London, August 27, 2001. I sought peace and couldn’t find it. Michael Dynes and Dominic Kennedy

The Times News Network, August 27, 2001. British Law Against Sai Baba Sought. Rashmee Z. Ahmed (ed. i.e., Times of Indian, not Times of London)

The Hindustan Times, August 27, 2001.  Sai Baba could be put on UK blacklist. Vijay Dutt, London

The Age (Melbourne, Australia), Saturday-Sunday, November 12, 2000. Scandal engulfs guru’s empire

DR (Denmark’s national radio and television broadcaster), January 30, 2002. Seduced by Sai Baba. Producer-Presenter, Øjvind Kyrø

Gatopardo (A leading Chilean Magazine), Febuary, 2002. No. 21 Yr 20. Divine Sin.  Alejandro Agostinelli

Noticias (Argentinean Magazine), August 17, 2001, Bad Faith Business, Juan Alonso:

Nexus, (Australian/International bi-monthly magazine) Vol 10, N­o. 4. June-July 2003. Sai Baba Allegations Grow. Barry Pittard

The Australian Financial Review, 21 November 2003.  The Trouble with Gurus. Mary Garden

BBC News, June 17, 2004, Sai Baba: God-man or con man? Tanya Datta

The Scotsman, June 18, 2004, Guru who gives us no answers. Tom Adair

The Guardian, June 18, 2004. Spiritual Depths. Rupert Smith

The Observer, Sunday June 20, 2004. Deity dancing. Kathryn Flett

The New Statesman, Monday, June 21, 2004. Laying on of hands. The guru who thinks he’s God is exposed as far from divine. Andrew Billen

The ABC (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) Radio National, The World Today, Friday, 25 June, 2004.  Guru glamour uncovered. Interviewer: Rachel Kohn. Guests, Mary Garden, Australian author, Mick Brown, English author and Daily Telegraph journalist

The Guardian. The Indian living god, the paedophilia claims and the Duke of Edinburgh awards. Saturday, November 4, 2006. Paul Lewis

DNA (Daily News and Analysis, India). Sunday, November 05, 2006. A holy furore rages in Britain. Ginnie Mahajan and Brajesh Kumar

Some Indian News Headlines on Sai Baba controversial remarks on the Telangana issue

Times of India, Jan 24, 2007. TRS cries hoarse over Sai Baba’s Telangana stance

Times of India, Jan 24, 2007. Cong ignores Sai Baba’s remarks

The Hindu. Special Correspondent, Jan 25, 2007. Agnivesh Flays Baba’s Remarks

Andhra Cafe, India, Jan 21, 2007. KCR condemns Sai Baba’s Anti-Telangana comments

CNN-IBN, India, Jan 23, 2007. Sai Baba lands in a Telangana row

Hindustan Times, India, Jan 22, 2007. Telangana activists upset with Sai Baba

Wikinews reports on Telangana issue. (There are some further news sources cited at the foot of this Wiki article)

Cancellation of ‘moon miracle’

Sify News and many Indian media carried the IANS (Indo-Asian News Service feed on this). Friday, October 5, 2007. Sai Baba’s Moon Miracle Fails


Posted in Miracles, Neglected/sidelined News, New Age, News and Politics, Rationalism, Religion, Sai Baba, Skeptics, Social and Politics, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | 18 Comments »

Sai Baba Cult Says it is ‘The’ Divine Organization In History

Posted by Barry Pittard on October 21, 2007

Former devotees are accosted by Sai Baba cult members in shopping malls, supermarkets and elsewhere. 

Information on them (already skewed) is gathered by Sai Baba’s members and conveyed both ‘up the chain’ of the Sathya Sai Organization or, in other cases, directly to attackers on the Internet, whose poor inferential capabilities can be spotted by anyone capable of detecting fallacious reasoning, and not already blinded. 

By Their Fruits Ye Shall Know Them

Countless former devotees around the world – except for the occasional foolish hotheads who seem to revel in it – deplore vile language or cyber fights, no matter from which quarter they may come.

The nasty defamatory, name-calling language that any surfer can see, not least from the mere search engine references linking to pro Sai Baba materials, immediately discloses the nature of a Sathya Sai Organization that would allow its case to be put while it stands in the background, letting its members cooperate, also in the background, in constant attacks against former devotees and other critics of Sathya Sai Baba. 

How Divine!

Former devotees who have not threatened or abused anyone are threatened via phone and on the Internet. 

The recent head of the Sathya Sai Organization, T.Sri Ramanathan, has made threats by phone, April 9, 2000, and also defamed former devotees to SBS Television and The Age newspaper in Australia. See HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE and HERE.

Emails by Thorbjörn Meyer, a major Sai Baba world leader, disclose the cult mentality without any assistance from critics (See, exchange of emails between Meyer and Robert Priddy).

bbc-clip-dr-micael-goldstein-gets-angry.jpgWorld chairman of the Sathya Sai Organization, Dr Michael Goldstein (Covina, California, USA, and associate top leaders Leonard Gutter (Argentina), Ashok Bhagani (UK), Steen Piculell (Denmark), J.Jagadeesan (Malaysia), and so on, have extremely falsified the stance of former devotees, as has Dr G. Venkataraman, Sai Baba’s head of world broadcasting – Sai Global Harmony via WorldSpace Satellite Radio Service (See Robert Priddy’s and Barry Pittard’s four-part article, The Sathya Sai Organization’s Propaganda and Deception Exposed.

Further Reading

Ashok Bhagani – Blotting Out Conscience and Memory?

Genital Oiling. Do Hindu Religious Leaders Approve?

Thorbjörn Meyer Interview. A careful observer of evasions and obfuscations by interviewees will readily be able to spot Meyer’s shortcomings in this interview by Bo Reimer on TV-Avisen, the Danish prime news show. The English translation is by Ole Alstrup. The interview was aired close on the heels of the documentary Seduced by DR, Denmark’s national and television broadcaster. Seduced (with an overvoice English translation) may be viewed HERE. Despite threats of legal action by the Australian Sathya Sai Organization, an English version was made by Australia’s great multicultural broadcaster SBS, and retitled Seduced By Sai Baba.

Posted in Morality, Neglected/sidelined News, Religion, Sai Baba, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , | 2 Comments »

Public Petition On Sathya Sai Baba (1)

Posted by Barry Pittard on October 20, 2007

There is a Public Petition calling for official probing of Sai Baba and his Sathya Sai Organization. (See website details at the end of this post).

The JUST (Just Seekers of Truth) petition is presented by a globally networked group of former followers of Sathya Sai Baba. In the ranks of both devotees and dissenters, there are those who say that Sai Baba is history’s most powerful guru. Some critics regard him as one of history’s arch deceivers – highly charismatic, highly flawed. He may brilliantly inspire good social uplift works, which is why so many earnest and good people are attracted to him, but profoundly conceals, along with his core servitors who keep an vice-like grip on his global organization, what is morally loathsome and criminal.

Allegations Far Exceed Issue of Sexual Molestation

At first, the overwhelming thrust of the Sathya Sai Baba exposé related to the perfectly normal and profound human shock at the disclosure of threats to the innocence of the young – in this case males. As investigation proceeded, and with rapid swelling of the ranks of leave-takers from Sai Baba, the volume of other types of evidence and allegation arose. In retrospect, it was to the Australian scholar and former devotee Brian Steel’s credit that from quite early he insisted to some of us that there were also other and formidable types of anomaly and evidence for wrongdoings. One of the strengths of Steel’s work was to expose many grave inconsistencies in Sai Baba’s discourses over a considerable time. He also, for example, highlighted the dubious nature of many alleged predictions of Sai Baba’s so-called ‘Advent’, and revealed Sai Baba’s own, and his movement’s generation and propagation of demonstrable myths that have come to be believed as truths by his devotees. These myths are typically sustained via his costly, so-called spiritual museums – ostensibly respectful of major world Faiths but which glorify Sai Baba beyond all. A small selection Brian Steel articles I have personally found useful are listed below under Further Reading.

Sai Attack on Integrity of Petition Authors

I was personally involved in the drafting of the JuST Petition, to the final product of which 32 signatories gave their contact details publicly. It was but an early example of how cautious networked Sai Baba former devotees have to be – if they speak out.

Value of Speaking Out Great But Cost Is High

However, conscience demands that former devotees who have personally investigated the claims of many primary witnesses speak out. We face an extremely powerful, wealthy and influential global organization. Therefore, one must, sadly, expect the distortions and vilification of those who, in the name of Sathya Sai Baba, would presume to defend him with tactics of a kind that deprives the Internet of civil decency and self-condemns any organization calling itself spiritual. Our contact with those who have exposed other famous gurus reveals copious examples of the same sinister types of defensive behaviours by those who cover up their gurus’ corruptions.

The Eternal Disjunct Between Practice and Precept

Strange indeed it is that Sai Baba’s much vaunted pillars are: Truth, Right Conduct, Peace, Love and Non-violence (Sathya, Dharma, Shanti, Prema, Ahimsa)

The merest glance at the search engines reveals the shocking language used to constantly attack and slander former devotees and other critics who have called for proper investigation of the many, varied and most serious allegations facing Sathya Sai Baba and his organization.

In stark contrast to the case of the few hotheads among former devotees who seem to relish Internet clashes, the overwhelming number of former devotees are the majority of those we have long known  in the Sathya Sai Organization who utterly disdain such behaviour.

Sai Baba has warned his devotees, via his Sai Center leaders throughout the world, not to look at the dissenting views contained on the Internet. As his organization is extremely controlled from ‘above’, it is difficult for dissenters to message to the more honest leaders and rank-and-file that the truth is not being told to them.

Cyber Combattants – The Unedifying in Full Pursuit of the Unedifying 

The best we have been able to do with former devotee hotheads is (many times!) privately and patiently to prevail upon these very few irresponsible individuals to stop altogether or else to greatly moderate their language.

Networked former devotees are not a cult, and believe strongly in working on the basis (for all that it can be demanding on international coordinators at times) of consultation and consensus. On a rare occasion, there is the case where an individual’s exceptionally good commentary has sometimes been sadly blemished by returns to nasty name-calling language and other immature self-indulgences. This shabby behaviour is to be deplored, from whatever side it may come. At the same time, however, the rest of us refuse to act like some sort of police heavies. Even if we wished to do so, we are often too busy with life’s many other calls to go hunting down unseemly comments amid the vast output that the Sai Baba issue has provoked. Nor is the reading of toxic writings good for digestion, mental or physical. Thank heaven for better things to do, because they help to balance and beautify life.

Core Sai Cult Leaders Fail Their Own Rank-and-file

One of the foremost untruths of the Sathya Sai Organization is that various of its leaders know extremely well that there has been a formidable exit of excellent members from it around the world, and that those, like Dr G. Venkataraman, the Deputy Chairman of the world Sathya Sai Organization, a rare case of a Sai Baba leader who is allowed to write publicly (if  limitedly) in relation to the allegations, have profoundly defamed the many wonderful and decent people who have left it. (This should not to obscure that there are wonderful and decent people remaining in it). For Robert Priddy’s and Barry Pittard’s four-part article, which give further important hotlinks to other material, dissecting a seriously defamatory article by Venkataraman – see, Sathya Sai Organization’s Deception and Propaganda Exposed.

Once they have identified themselves, former devotees and other critics of Sai Baba are attacked, slandered and demeaned – absolutely breaking teaching after teaching of Sai Baba, who forever speaks of love, compassion, peacefulness, and forebearance.

Further Reading

1. The JuST Petiton is HERE

2. Brian Steel’s writings are typically exacting and detailed, and require, if any response were at all reasonable, a careful, ruthlessly honest reply by any writer of comparable integrity. That no such Sai Baba writer of intellectual note has emerged to challenge what Steel has written, makes it all the more deplorable that he has been assailed by Sai Baba forces whose one métier is the superficial rush to carping judgement. Dr G. Venkataraman, the former Indian nuclear scientist and Sai Baba’s head of propaganda organ Sai Global Harmony via WorldSpace Satellite Radio Service, who is beloved of sweeping (and untrue) generalizations, seems incapable of uttering response, reasoned or otherwise, to any part of Brian Steel’s many articles, so freely available on his extensive and highly researched website, the Index page of which is HERE.

Select articles by Brian Steel

B.D. Steel is a semi-retired linguist specializing in Spanish language and translation research, and the author of several advanced textbooks and dictionaries. During his twelve years as a devotee of Sathya Sai Baba, he compiled two hagiographies which were published in USA by Samuel Weiser, Inc and in New Delhi.

The Truth Resuscitated: Suppressed Evidence Reappears
(A Brief Update on the Packaging of SSB’s Discourses)

Discrepancies in the Official Sathya Sai Baba Story: The Early Years
An Annotated Bibliography for Research on Sathya Sai Baba. Part 2. Work Critical of Sathya Sai Baba and his Mission by non-devotees (including ex-devotees)

Posted in Morality, Neglected/sidelined News, New Age, Protest, Rationalism, Religion, Sai Baba, Uncategorized, World Religions | 3 Comments »

The Secret Swami. BBC Docu. Review. Condensed

Posted by Barry Pittard on October 16, 2007

Many have sought out my article, The BBC’s The Secret Swami – A Revision. However, it is very long, and many readers are very busy. So, for the sake of condensation, here, in the form of quotes, are some key pieces of information from it. Downloadable video footage is in the clickable references at the foot of this present blog.

Subheaders

  • Focus on One Family Obscures Vast Extent of Allegations
  • Governments Placate India
  • Supposedly God, Sai Baba Woos Heads of State and other Big Players
  • Foreign Goose Lays Multi-billion Dollar Eggs For Sai Baba
  • BBC’s Tanya Datta asks: ‘Is Sai Baba Above The Law?’
  • Oiling Penises Not A Hindu Ritual. (Nor Of Other World Faiths)
  • Top Indian Minister Shows Ugly Face of Indian Government Sai Baba Patronage
  • Dr Goldstein Tells BBC “I am what I am – a consummate professional”
  • “He Could Go Out And Murder” Says Billionaire backer, Isaac Tigrett
  • “Absolutely Cold-blooded Murder”, Says Former Home Secretary, V.P.B.Nair
  • Room For Many More Documentaries

Quotes

“The BBC’s cameras at Sathya Sai Baba’s ashram at Puttaparthi in South India catch the pomp, circumstance, opulence and the highly stage-managed atmosphere of the crowded Mahasivaratri festival, February 2004”

V.P.B. Nair, former Home Secretary in Sai Baba’s State of Andhra Pradesh at the time of the killings, is seen in the BBC television documentary on Sai Baba, The Secret Swami, (2004), where he says that the police killings were “cold-blooded murder””.

The Secret Swami confines itself to four areas:

  • Accusations down many years of Sai Baba’s serial sexual molestation of young males from various countries
  • His implication in police executions in his private quarters on June 6, 1993
  • Cover-up by him and the leadership of his worldwide organization, and as well as by successive Indian governments, of major criminal allegations
  • His faking of miracles”

“BBC producer Eamon Hardy and his team’s view was that serious questions are raised about India’s political maturity”.

“Focusing on one family meant no examination of anything like the full extent of the allegations. It also meant no examination of the multiple billions (that’s a ‘b’ not an ‘m’) that pour into the Sathya Sai Central Trust coffers from all over the world, or of financial scams by his administration (e.g., the selling of apartments which are sometimes later taken away from the paid up owners), which devotees blindly accept, as “tests of faith”. It meant no examination of Tony Blair’s and also the Conservative Party Whips suppression of over fifty British parliamentarians (an earlier list showing, as I recall 47, was incomplete) to raise Sai Baba-related issues in the House of Commons.  This was at a time when Blair wanted to placate the then Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee so as to win a contract for 66 jet fighters for India. The BBC had evidence from a former British diplomat that Vajpayee demanded of Blair that he cool down the activity concerning Sathya Sai Baba, whose long-time devotee Vajpayee was, and is. The urgency to win the deal was bi-partisan”. For futher information, see my article, Flag Follows Trade. Abetting Indian Government Corruption

“Other documentaries will need to look at the supposedly miraculously materialized jewelry which independent international assayers like the Queen of Denmark’s crown jeweler attest are faked

“Caught by the BBC cameras for all time, Sai Baba pretended to vomit up pure gold Siva Lingam. A few minutes later, he told his vast audience:

“Out of the stomach emanated Shiva Lingas of the weight  of three tonnes.  That’s the reason why some strain on  the face and the body”.

“BBC producers say that Sai Baba’s top leaders at first thought the documentary would present a ‘positive image’ of their guru and the works of his organization to the world. Hence the rare permission for the BBC to shoot at Sai Baba’s ashram”.

“The exposure by Denmark’s national broadcaster in its 2003 documentary Seduced (renamed Seduced By Sai Baba in the English language version by Australia’s national multicultural broadcaster SBS), seen by millions in Denmark, Norway and Australia – when the top Sai leaders in Denmark and Australia made unavailing threats of legal action – must still have haunted their minds”.

“Showing three zealous western devotees eccentrically rhapsodizing about Sai Baba fails to indicate his appeal to people of many cultures and socio-economic backgrounds. Filming eccentrics detracts from the serious purpose seen elsewhere in the documentary. It obscures the interest he has evoked in figures of great power (e.g., Bill and Hillary Clinton (more particularly Hillary), Al Gore, Mikhail and (the late) Raisa Gorbachev (a friend of mine informed me that Mrs Gorbachev told her that Gorbachev had a book of discourses by Sai Baba as his bedside reading). Confirmation of the Clinton connection and their readiness to meet Sai Baba, which was thwarted by security advisors on both sides, was given to me by my beloved friend, one of Sai Baba closest of all servitors, the great Indian author and newspaper Editor (the late) V.K. Narasimhan. The sheer penetration of Sai Baba’s influence is of real concern”.

“One learns that The U.S. minerals magnate James Sinclair got upset when Sai Baba officials announced sums of money that he had donated, so it is likely that his continuing donations are now not being disclosed. However, we know that he twice donated U.S. 600 million dollars. I shall have to see whether I can check the figure but I think Sinclair further donated $100 million for Sai Baba’s first water project, a sum announced by Indulal Shah (then head of the Sathya Sai Organization) at Sai Baba’s 70th birthday celebrations, when Shah listed every donor to the Water Project who had given at least one crore. U.S. devotee friends who knew Sinclair and his wife, (the late) Barbara Sinclair said that Sinclair was very shocked that his name would brought out”.

“Would many Indian politicians, notorious for their extreme corruption, dare expose the foreign goose that lays the (cosmic!) golden egg? Driving this question would have reinforced the documentary’s fundamental query about whether India is a mature democracy”.

“We see the hospital by English architect Keith Critchlow for Sai Baba (a long-time conduit to Prince Charles). Largely funded by Isaac Tigrett and inaugurated in 1991, this hi-tech heart and kidney hospital even outdazzles the many-splendoured architecture of the ashram. BBC cameras miss the names of other big donors, overseas and Indian, which are on a Roll of Honour in the hospital portico. Indeed, The Secret Swami fails to mention the billions that pour into the Sai coffers from various countries such as Australia, Canada, Hong Kong (indeed, the Chinese diaspora), Germany, Indonesia, Japan, UK, USA … Like the American James Sinclair (who often works from Canada), the precious metals speculator, alone has donated several hundreds of millions of dollars)”.

“To convince the most critical, the BBC needed demonstrations as sophisticated as those in the Danish documentary Seduced (a copy of which the BBC possessed) where the Danish magician Nils Krøjgaard exposes the deceptions involved”.

“Confronted by the BBC’s Tanya Datta, Murli Manohar Joshi, one of the most powerful ministers in the since-defeated right wing Vajpayee government, soon loses his temper, jabbing away with pointed finger at Ms Datta, accusing the BBC and people in England of plotting against Sai Baba, A.B. Vajpayee and P.N. Bhagwati (a key Sathya Sai Central Trust member and former Chief Justice of India). He arrogantly shouts at her:  “No, no, no… You don’t know the meaning of interviewing a minister in my capacity, as a minister of my stature””.

“So repeatedly evasive was Dr Michael Goldstein that the BBC team gained permission from BBC heads and legals to film him with hidden cameras. The BBC cleverly gets him to admit the correctness of the Rahm family’s report of his words. Unlike his archangelic namesake and just like Joshi, his finger repeatedly jabs at Tanya Datta as he snarls, blusters and fulminates. Seemingly in need of a child’s first dictionary, Dr Goldstein hurls the questions, “Transparency in what sense?” and “What do you mean by thorough investigation”? He says that his “heart and his conscience” know that the allegations of sexual molestation could not be true. But what about the heart and conscience of families and individuals around the world who give accounts of Sai Baba’s tragic harming of their boy children?”

“We see the President of India Dr A. P. J. Abdul Kalam and Dr Manmohan Singh (now India’s Prime Minister) visiting Sai Baba on his birthday. The ‘secret swami’ does not have to go to Indian Presidents, Prime Ministers and other power brokers on all sides of politics. They go to him!”

“In exposing a dangerous and influential cult, The Secret Swami is plucky and perceptive. Canada’s national broadcaster CBC was waylaid by hundreds of phone calls and emails by Sai Baba devotees, both before and after the screenings of the documentary in Canada. The program host said on air “We stand by the professionalism of our BBC colleagues”.

For Downloading and Viewing

The Secret Swami (BBC Television)
(154 MB, Broadband). The Secret Swami (23.3 MB, Modem)

Seduced (DR, Danish Broadcasting, Denmark’s national television and radio broadcaster):
(80 MB, Broadband). Seduced (21 MB, Modem)

Posted in Neglected/sidelined News, New Age, Rationalism, Religion, Sai Baba, Sex, Skeptics, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments »

Is Humanity One Big Cult?

Posted by Barry Pittard on October 13, 2007

There is a fundamental mistake that defenders of those accused of serious abuse keep on making.

Accusations of substantive abuse do not have to be proved. They have to be investigated.

An organization that does not have genuine policies and practices of transparency and accountability is per se condemned.

Many Exposés of Cults Reveal Same Abuses and Rationalizations

Statements such as that an organization’s founder and his or her core leaders have never been brought before a court are crude and dishonest in the extreme. Repeatedly, across the various exposure of leaders, the patterns of denial, obfuscation and outright deceit are to be observed. Meetings between dissenters from various cults, who have left because they found profoundly betrayed the noble aims concerning which they joined, can tend to get off to a flying start, for participants are deeply struck by the many commonalities of experiences. I shall not say more of this aspect at present. For it is good that increasing contacts mature between those who have experienced spiritual betrayal around the world and the monumental cover-up of it can mature and prosper. And, indeed, that the perpetrators are left to wonder what alliances and resource-sharing and joint ventures might effect in educating greater publics of the great and insidious threats posed by cults of various kinds.

Cult defenders persistently employ a number of blunt tools: demeaning, name-calling, demonizing, slandering, stalking both on and off the Internet, intimidation, distortion and misinterpretation of what has been said. They muck-rack like McCarthyites, and attack individuals, quite commonly for faults they have not committed, instead of address issues. The use of ad hominem arguments and tu quoque retorts is very typical, and they confuse the difference between legitimately naming an individual and criticising their statements or role and illegitimate practice of slandering a person, and thus avoiding the central issues being presented. Their smokescreens choke horizons like a bad bushfire on a gusty day. Often, they appeal to popular prejudice. They get caught up in the narrowest interpretations of dissenters’ intentions or actions. Each individual who speaks up, they will assume the worst of, and defame – one after the other. They avoid the substantive questions and arguments, and accuse others of doing so. One is damned if one should respond to them, and damned if one does not. But then why should one bend to respond to those so antagonistic? It’s damned well good at least not to be down in the gutter.

There is no diving equipment adequate to diving into sewers. Those among the dissenters such as the hotheaded and bloody-mindedly quarrelsome who do respond end up in endless dogfights, which are far removed from the very reasons – which can be ideals most would agree to be noble, humane, spiritual and so forth – which led one to be a part of a self-enhancement group in the first instance. Many dissenters have, however, done years of hard self-development and of unstinting service to the poor and needy in their communities and other worthy causes. They may fight, but they will not dogfight.

Euphoria and Topic Avoidance

There is often in guru and cult defenders an appeal to popular prejudices – such as that media inevitably sensationalizes and misreports or that dissenters are people who did not get attention from the group’s guru, etc. The defensive tactics reveal the depth of problems of personality which a leader and cult, despite grand claims, has not, amidst the unreal euphoria and avoidance of topics where hard questions are raised, been able to heal or to solve. It is, of course, a problem that can as easily afflict dissenters, unless they have done some hard work on themselves.

Humanity – One Big Cult?

A far wider problem exists. One can point to cultic tendencies in this or that group. But then if we emphasize qualities of group-think and non-think in groups termed (accurately or not) ‘cults’, we will end up comforted, with our fingers pointed out, rather than considering our own capacities. Is there a grand unquestioning that is the tendency of a cult called Humanity? A cutting across all the ‘isms’ – except one:  bias-ism. So normal that we feel normal. So huge that we don’t recognize it, just as we might tend to assume without thinking that the sun will rise in the east on the morrow or that the sky still coheres above us.

No need to click on ‘Register’ or ‘Join’. No need to pay annual subsriptions. Our forebears have already enrolled us.

If we are all afflicted, we had best find a better way of getting out of the millennially built-up sludge. But no use ‘fessing up unless we can find ways to do it without exploitation, shouting, clubbing, and reversion to division and the manning of battlements.

The Example of The Muslim Leaders

Perhaps the Muslim and Christian clerics, theologians and academics who are busily writing to each other right at this moment will find ways to express commonalities which lead to love and compassion, and still face the differentiations that tests the goodwill, and in a way that works beyond the lovey-dovey. I think there is a tendency, which the leaders will have to address, to assume that religions are what make the world go round, rather the cynical machinations of realpolitik. Never mind, any genuinely caring way might be the way out of the sludge – even if by happy accident, or some millennial crawl to a new paradigm.

We can all be members of the clubless club of the great unwashed, which has but one essential thought. That we are washed, even if others are not. And one essential risk: that we can, all too easily do bad dirt on good people – if there happen to be any around.

Further Reading

The Muslim leaders’ bold document is available in .pdf format, courtesy of the BBC, HERE

Posted in Neglected/sidelined News, New Age, Opinion, Religion, Spirituality, Theology, Theosophy, Uncategorized, World Religions | Leave a Comment »

Muslim Leaders Initiative Bold. Sai Baba’s Efforts Fail

Posted by Barry Pittard on October 12, 2007

An extraordinary cross-section of mainstream Muslim clerics, theologians and academics have acted in a way that Sai Baba and his mega wealthy worldwide cult have profoundly failed to act.

This failure needs to be made very clear within the interfaith movement. The members of the Sathya Sai Organization which has attempted to interact with it, can be challenged to disclose their real agendas, which are similarly kept from tightly controlled public meetings in very costly, high-prestige venues around the world (See my article, Will World Accept Sai Baba? He Says Yes. Very Soon)

Virtually Sai Baba’s whole evangel and program have long been to establish unity between the faiths.

Where, if anywhere, is Sai Baba in the interfaith equation?

What, if any, distinctive contribution to interfaith conferences have Sai Baba and his Sathya Sai Organization made?

Are there any sign of the 138 Muslim leaders from all the major Islamic branches (Sunni, Shia, Ibadi, Sufi, Ismali, Jafari), or the wide cross-section of those Christian leaders to whom they have addressed their letter, flocking to Puttaparthi to consult Sai Baba?

Is it at all likely that these or any other widely and genuinely respected religious leaders worldwide would accept Sai Baba? – For he has said that all the faiths soon will, before he dies circa 2022. Sai Baba has many times said that He who is God, the father of Jesus Christ and He who is Allah who sent the Prophet, is now fully manifest in the form of Sathya Sai Baba of Puttaparthi, Andhra Pradesh, South India, and, especially via the instrumentality of his Sathya Sai Organization, will transform the world.

What of those members of the Sathya Sai Organization who adhere to a scheme to work their way into the interfaith movement? Members of the latter may like to ask themselves a question: have those very pleasant people who have sought them out (including at a highly senior level) been truthful and frank, and disclosed the agendas of the cult whose leader the BBC has termed “The Secret Swami”, which is to prepare a world for the global rulership of Sathya Sai Baba?

Reading

The Muslim leaders’ document is available HERE

Major News Releases on the initiative by Muslim leaders

Pope told ‘survival of world’ at stake if Muslims and Christians do not make peace
The Times
The “survival of the world” is at stake if Muslims and Christians do not make peace with each other, leaders of the Muslim world will warn the Pope and other Christian leaders today. In an unprecedented open

Muslims Leaders Warn Pope ‘Survival of World’ at Stake
Fox News
The “survival of the world” is at stake if Muslims and Christians do not make peace with each other, leaders of the Muslim world will warn the Pope and other Christian leaders today. In an unprecedented open

Muslim-Christian dialogue urged
Dawn
By Our Special Correspondent LONDON, Oct 11: In an unprecedented open letter signed by 138 leading scholars from every sect of Islam and sent to the Pope and other Christian leaders on Thursday, the signatories

Muslim Leaders Send Peace Message
Time Magazine
It is time that Muslims and Christians recognized just how similar they are — the fate of the world depends on it. That’s the message being sent out today by 138 Muslim leaders and scholars in an open

Let’s make peace to save world, Muslims tell Pope
The Times
The “survival of the world” is at stake if Muslims and Christians do not make peace with each other, leaders of the Muslim world have told the Pope and other Christian leaders. In an open letter signed by 138

Unprecedented Muslim call for peace with Christians
Scotsman
By Peter Graff LONDON (Reuters) – More than 130 Muslim scholars from around the globe called on Thursday for peace and understanding between Islam and Christianity, saying “the very survival of the world itself

Muslim scholars appeal for peace
National Post
LONDON – More than 130 Muslim scholars from around the globe called yesterday for peace and understanding between Islam and Christianity, saying “the very survival of the world itself is perhaps at stake.” In

Muslim scholars call for peace with Christians
Khaleej Times
(Reuters) 11 October 2007 LONDON – More than 130 Muslim scholars called on Thursday for peace and understanding between Islam and Christianity, saying “the very survival of the world itself is perhaps at

Survival of world ‘is perhaps at stake’
Canada Dot Com
LONDON – More than 130 Muslim scholars from around the globe called on Thursday for peace and understanding between Islam and Christianity, saying “the very survival of the world itself is perhaps at stake.” In

Muslim scholars call for peace between religions
International Herald Tribune
: More than 130 Muslim scholars called Thursday for peace and understanding between Islam and Christianity, saying “the very survival of the world itself is perhaps at stake.” In a to Pope Benedict XVI

Posted in Neglected/sidelined News, New Age, News and Politics, Rationalism, Religion, Skeptics, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | 4 Comments »

Indian Nuclear Scientist Now Sathya Sai Baba’s Global Radio Chief

Posted by Barry Pittard on October 8, 2007

Sathya Sai Baba’s chief international propagandist (via Sai Global Harmony and WorldSpace International Satellite Radio Service) is Dr G. Venkataraman. He is also deputy head of the immensely wealthy and influential world Sathya Sai Organization, and formerly an Indian nuclear scientist on highly sensitive projects.

His former colleague was the late Dr S. Bhagavantham, also a nuclear scientist, who was Chief Scientific Advisor to the Indian Department of Defense, and for many years, Sathya Sai Baba’s principal translator. (I have confidentially, and reliably, been informed circumstances of Bhagavantham’s leave-taking of Sathya Sai Baba – it is a sad account and does justice to Bhagavantham, and not at all for Sathya Sai Baba. Whether the latter’s family and friends can ever reveal the story is a moot point).

While inveighing against dissenting former devotees of Sathya Sai Baba (who come from many countries), Dr G. Venkataraman has made a major point of citing Indian leaders like former Prime Minister A.B. Vajpayee and immediate ex-President A.P.J. Kalam (who was designer of India’s nuclear device delivery vehicles) as those who support Sai Baba.

If you squint a little, you can just make out a nuclear aura around Sai Baba.

Top Vajpayee Minister Thinks BBC Was Plotting

But for a glimpse at the clearly morally bankrupt showing of the Vajpayee government on many allegations facing Sathya Sai Baba, see the video clip from the BBC’s The Secret Swami (2004), HERE.

Datta, Tanya

Confronted by the BBC’s charming interviewer Tanya Datta, who asked perfectly fair questions, Dr Murli Manohar Joshi, a cabinet Minister in the Vajpayee government, soon lost his temper, showed himself to be a thorough bully. He jabbed away with pointed finger at the taken-aback Ms Datta, accusing the BBC and “people in England” of plotting against Sai Baba, his devotee A.B. Vajpayee and P.N. Bhagwati (a key Sathya Sai Central Trust member and former Chief Justice of India). As the interview progresses, Joshi arrogantly shouts at her:

Joshi:

Well I have read something and I’m, I know Sai Baba very well, I know most of these people very well. And I can say that whatever Mr Vajpayee has said is the correct position.

Tanya Datta:
Isn’t the point really that any possible investigation by the state of Sai Baba would be compromised?

Joshi:
No, no, there has been no, you see, there’s no question, any false allegation, you see. I know that this is a case in which your BBC is, is involved and people from England are, have been making certain charges against Sai Baba

Joshi then reminded one of the world chairman of the Sathya Sai Organization, Dr Michael Goldstein –

Sathya Sai Baba Chief, Dr Goldstein, Explodes. “I am the consummate professional” (See Film Clips) – when he was caught by the BBC’s hidden camera – a measure that was only taken when BBC production, senior management and legals saw that there was gross and repeated cultic evasion and non-accountability).

goldiragingbull

Joshi too lost his temper. Joshi too, blustered and smokescreened. Joshi too, in a show of a dark side too patent and potent for any sensible view to miss, reacted angrily and overbearingly:

manjoshi

“No, no, no… You don’t know the meaning of interviewing a minister in my capacity, as a minister of my stature”. (See my article at ‘Call For Media and Government Investigation of Sathya Sai Baba’, The BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami’ – A Revision)

See video footage:

“The Secret Swami” – BBC Film Footage and Transcript

BBC Cameras Catch Sai Baba Cheating With Gold Sivalingam. (Film Clip)

“The Secret Swami” – BBC Film Footage and Transcript

and commentary at ‘Call For Media and Government Investigation of Sathya Sai Baba’:

The BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami’ – A Revision

BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami’ and British Press Praise

Dr G. Venkataraman and Bill Aitkin Allege BBC Plot

In his article, G. Venkataraman is also partial to the conspiratorial view. He quotes, very approvingly, the English devotee Bill Aitkin (author of Sri Sathya Sai Baba, A Life. Viking Books, 2004), who typically spends many months at Sai Baba’s ashram in Puttaparthi. He says that:

“Aitkin has given a stirring defence of Swami … Here is what Aitkin has to say about the BBC, and he gives on behalf of all of us a stinging reply to slander with all the required passion! Aitkin says: ‘The BBC is ultimately governed by the Anglican establishment, and churches in the west are losing out financially to the appeal of the Sai Baba movement'”.

Venkataraman triumphantly concludes:

“Well, there it is – all the rebuttal of the BBC that you have always wanted, that too from an Englishman!”

It is indicative and revealing that Sai Baba’s defenders like G. Venkataraman, feel the need to defend his Godhood by reference to politicians, presidents present and past or, for example, prostrate to an Englishman who does not produce a single argument for his conspiracy contention.

Top Indian Leaders Who Accept Sai Baba, Good. Former Devotee Dissenters, Bad

Such is the Orwellian logic, in matters non-nuclear, of Dr G. Venkataraman.

Except among the naive, there is tremendous skepticism in India about politicians, as I know from my years of living there. Did Venkataraman even pause to consider the perceptions of politicians in the minds of a great many? Of politicians who like to be pictured in advantageous places, consorting with those who will fetch most and endanger fewest votes? And make high-sounding promises and then break them? Of politicians who blatantly lie, and play about with nuclear toys (of matters nuclear Venkataraman is well-acquainted)? Of politicians who are anything but spiritual characters?

Of course, we all have our national crosses to bear.

Venkataraman would try – in his newsletter aimed at devotees, firm and infirm, around the world – to ‘authorize’ his God by reference to politicians and other compromised notables, and to denounce former devotees in large numbers who were for long highly regarded when they were Sai devotees – and still much esteemed for their integrity by their wider communities.

In proclaiming Sai Baba’s divinity, why cite politicians, presidents etc., or a conspiratorially-minded Englishman – whose poor attempt at scholarship has been carefully dissected and exposed by a real scholar, Brian Steel (see link on Aitkin’s name above) – as guarantor of goodness?

Some Related Articles

At – http://robertpriddy.wordpress.com

————————————————————————-

General

Excerpt From Public Petition

(Note: You may prefer to proceed straight to the Petition):

Public Petition For Official Investigations of Sathya Sai Baba and His Worldwide Organization

There is a Spanish version available:

PETICIÓN PÚBLICA PARA INVESTIGACIONES OFICIALES DE SATHYA SAI BABA Y SU ORGANIZACIÓN A NIVEL MUNDIAL)

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Is Indian ‘Godman’ Sai Baba’s Moon Waning Still Further?

Posted by Barry Pittard on October 7, 2007

The report below, I have excerpted from the DNAINDIA news service. It indicates that Sathya Sai Baba’s chief translator and personal India and international emissary, Professor Anil Kumar, has acknowledged the extraordinary traffic and crowd snarls occasioned by Sai Baba’s trip to his private airport at Puttaparthi.

It is reported that India’s most famous and controversial guru was at the airport in his car on the evening of Thursday October 4, 2007, which got badly detained by unruly crowds. He would be present, it was believed, to preside over a profound mass vision that he, as God, would perform. An Indo Asian News Service (IANS) staff writer reported:

“It all started when an official of the Sai Trust announced that the godman would make a ‘moon appearance’ 6-7 p.m., and asked devotees to proceed towards the airport”.

The ‘moon appearance’ was to be “Vishwarupa Darshanam“. This is a beholding (by whatever means it is mediated – like in the Bhagavad Gita account of Arjuna’s looking into the mouth of Sri Krishna) by the devotee of the universal form of the divine. Sacred Hindu scriptures state that it is grace extremely rarely bestowed. Supposedly, Sai Baba, who claims to be the fullest incarnation of God ever to appear on earth (poornavathar, purnavatar, etc) was going to allow thousands of his devotees to have the vision of the cosmic form of the divine (in whatever that may consist).

Indian Media Long Heavily Censored on Sai Baba. A Change is Occurring 

It is good that some Indian media are at last reporting on events that do not speak well of Sai Baba or of his close servitors. For decades there has been extremely heavy censorship of news inimical to Sathya Sai Baba. There must be many Indians who feel it disgraceful that scarcely no Indian media has covered the many and various types of allegations against Sai Baba, and of many of his closest servitors. A great exception was India Today, with its cover story of December 4, 2000, and the courageous journalism of its staffers like Vijay Thapa.

It has been ironical that NRI’s (Non-Resident Indians) throughout the world have been able to get alternative and critical news about Sai Baba and his cult while India, at large, has been extensively kept in the dark. Given that Sai Baba’s outfit is a highly autocratic monolith, it is doubtful that non-core Sathya Sai Organization leaders and rank-and-file members will know about what www.dnaindia.com (see below) reports as “rival groups within the Trust demanding a stake in the assets” (Ed., i.e., the Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust).

Perhaps at long last, more sections of the Indian media, picking up some shreds of their international self-respect, are now prepared to scrutinize Sai Baba and his cult, and not leave matters up to foreign media, like the BBC (The Secret Swami), CBC (Canada), DR (Denmark), NRK (Norway), ABC and SBS (Australia), The Times of India, The Daily Telegraph, The Guardian and other major media in several countries to investigate the many and serious allegations facing Sai Baba and his core, and very secret, leaders. Indeed, his mega billion dollar apparatus that has for so long covered up for him at the highest levels in the police, judiciary, and almost absolute complicity, irrespective of political hue, of Indian governments local, state and central – including the current Manmohan Singh regime.

Puttaprthi Sai Baba misses date with miracle
DNA Correspondent
Saturday, October 06, 2007  08:32 IST

“The near stampede at the aerodrome compelled the ashram trustees and the Seva Dal volunteers to shift his vehicle to a remote corner and form a security cordon around it. But the devotees kept chasing Saibaba’s vehicle wherever his car moved ….

A vexed Saibaba and his entourage them decided to get back to his abode of Prashanti Nilayam. “Even that was difficult as the entire road and the highway out of Puttaparthi was clogged with vehicles,” said Anil Kumar, Baba’s disciple and personal attendant ….

Thursday’s aborted feat is being seen an attempt by the aging godman to regain his waning popularity and rekindle public interest in his divine personality. Saibaba’s vast properties in Bangalore, Mumbai and Delhi are already under a cloud with rival groups within the Trust demanding a stake in the assets”.

Further Reading

Robert Priddy: Sai Baba postpones moon buggy ride
Barry Pittard: Sai Baba Fails To Appear In Moon
——–  —–—-: The Decline and Fall of the Showman Empire

Note: Many surfers used the following search terms to get to the articles at https://barrypittard.wordpress.com on the Sai Baba moon issue:

Sai Baba on moon
baba in moon
sathya sai baba in moon
satya sai baba in moon
saibaba on moon
moon appear satya sai

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Sai Baba Fails To Grant Great Moon Vision. Endangers Crowds

Posted by Barry Pittard on October 6, 2007

Once, my life nearly succumbed to an Indian headlong pilgrim rush.

Crowd Delirium at Puttaparthi

What wondrous relief, then, not to have been caught up in the crowd surges of Sathya Sai Baba devotees which, last Thursday evening, plunged towards Sai Baba’s Puttaparthi airport. They hungered after Sai Baba’s reportedly promised divine vision as hunger-maddened human beings might rush for food.

Sai Baba had announced through one of his chief servitors, Professor Anil Kumar, news reports state, that he would grant to his assembled devotees a great vision – no less than “Vishwarupa Darshanam”.

krishna-and-arjuna.jpg

This is the sort of peak divine experience that Lord Krishna is said to have granted to his servitor and boon companion Arjuna. See Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 11, At a point north east, all the divinely and incredibly fortunate Sai devotees would have to do would be to look up at the moon, and, lo, they would receive a blessing granted usually only to yogis or rishis (sages) who had meditated for thousands of years. (Too bad, of course, for any blind Sai Baba devotees). But the weather turned cloudy, and Puttaparthi officials are reported as saying that their Bhagawan Sai Baba had refused to go ahead with the event because the crowds had become unruly, holding up his car, in which he had been driven to the airport, for an hour.

How anyone could attain redemptive deliverance by trampling to death one’s fellow pilgrims may seem something of a mystery. But it is not a spiritual mystery. How Sai Baba could have set up a situation which any sane Indian knows is bound to cause incredible crowd turmoil is not, I think, a mystery at all. But, rather, is explicable in terms of serious recurring evidence of an encroaching mental condition that his core assistants work overtime in trying to keep from devotees and the general public. See my article: Sai Baba’s Tip to Keep Ageing Away.

In India, ‘Guest is God’. My 15 Minutes of Godhood

To speak of fervent ‘religous’ crowds who can trample you underfoot in the twinkling of a foot. One day at Sai Baba’s Puttaparthi ashram, in the late ’70’s, I was seized by a fit of (would-be) renunciation.

I was a lecturer in Sai Baba’s boys college at Whitefield, via Bangalore, and used to my place on Sai Baba’s temple (mandir) verandah and other ‘privilegious’ vantage points. One of these was a spot among Sai Baba’s male bhajan lead singers who sat right up front in the Puttaparthi auditorium, the Poorna Chandra, at that time said to be the second-largest auditorium in South-East Asia.

sarva-dharma-stupa-and-poorna-chandra-hall-puttaparthi.gif

With no prizes available for grand naivity, I thought:  let me get out of this unseemly easefulness and sit as far up towards the back as possible, among the seething humanity, in this way working towards combatting egoic attachment to Sai Baba’s form. Unlike my normal seating position, to which I could go freely without queuing, I now had to wait among great throngs. At length, the roller doors of the Poorna Chandra were thown open, whence followed as fiece a charge as a Kiplingesque ‘Charge of the Light Brigade’ – except that this was the charge of myriad heavy brigades. Pakistan would have been defeated in an instant!

Salvational Desperation

I did not then know what many a surviving pilgrim in India will know – which is:  Do rush. Do plunge pell-mell. Do charge with the charge. Otherwise you’re done for – life or limb. Unless you want to stay at home and risk getting run over by a vehicle. Nothing in India’s scriptures, nor in any, had quite prepared me for this important annexure to sacred Wisdom.

Thou Shalt Not Trample Foreign Visitors, Unless Moksha (Soul Liberation) Needs Forbid

Fortunately, there were a few quick thinkers among that madding crowd. As it surged forward stormily – avid after sitting places – an instinctive protectiveness by alert Indians saved this Australian “innocent abroad”. One had better not, if at all manageable, paste an innocent foreign face on the floor. Of course, my Indian brothers have known millennia before the American humorist Mark Twain wrote “Innocents Abroad” that foreign travellers tend to be … ah, well … Or, to express the matter mildly, that we can magnify Murphy’s Law to the power of ten.

Then, several pairs of hands swept me up until I was carried over the heads of my benignly strong-armed rescuers. Perhaps that was the prize – my life.

My Fifteen Minutes of Sacred (or Scared) Fame

Once we sat down, I found that some knew I was a teacher in Sai Baba’s college and, at odd times, a bhajan leader, and “I” found “myself” – so to speak – duly worshipped – for God’s sake! The chump being worshipped was still alive, if rather shaken. And Andy Warhol was assiduously timing the whole event – pretty well right down to his statutary fifteen minutes.

Further earnest devotees started beckoning me to work my way down, and, with pained concern inscribed in their faces and tender care vibrating in their outreaching hands, swept me up and passed me continually forward to yet myriad other caring hands (which minutes ago might have belonged to individuals who would gingerly have trampled me underfoot), until service volunteers (seva dals), also brimfull of earnest solicitation, conducted me back to my accustomed, privilegious seat.

For, of course, one of the great courtesies of India is, veritably, that ‘guest is God’.

Vintage Quote From Sai Baba

“I will have to forego the car and even the aeroplane when I move from place to place, for the crowds pressing around them will be too huge; I will have to move across the sky; yes, that too will happen, believe Me.” (Sathya Sai Speaks Vol. II, p. 92)

Further Reading

www.andhracafe.com news report, updated: October 4, 2007. Hysteric crowds force Sai Baba to differ Viwa Rupa. Below, I have excerpted from this news release:

HYDERABAD : Hysteric crowds and overhanging clouds persuaded Sri Satya Sai Baba to postpone his promised Vishwarupa darshanam on Thursday evening. There was chaos at the Puttaparthi airport after Sai Baba devotees thronged the premises to witness the Vishwarupa darshanam of their master….
They returned disappointed. Sai Baba had earlier given darshan to his devotees at Sai Kulwant hall in Puttaparthi. After the bhajan, he told his assistant Anil Kumar that he would give Vishwarupa darshanam at around 7 pm on the northeastern direction of the airport….
As soon as Mr Anil Kumar announced this, devotees ran towards the airport chanting his name. Television channels also telecast the news and people in Puttaparthi locked up their houses and ran towards the airport. Thousands also rushed to the area from surrounding villages….
All the devotees crowding the area focused their attention on the northeastern direction in the sky. In a fit of devotion, some of them surrounded the car of Sai Baba and he could not come out. Devotees did not relent even after members of Satya Sai Trust urged them to sit down. Instead, they ran after the car….
A small stage was set up before the car for Viswarupa Darshanam but Sai Baba could not reach the stage as devotees prostrated before him. He was forced to remain in the car for about an hour….
A short while later, the office-bearers of the Satya Sai Trust announced that the Viswarupa Darsanam was postponed because of the non-cooperation of devotees and the cloudy weather. Sai Baba then returned to his Ashram. Sai Baba devotees in other countries also called up their friends and relatives in Puttaparthy to find out about the incident….
Because of the rush, traffic on the road from Puttaparthy to the airport was thrown out of gear. At one stage, doors of the airport had to be closed. Police finally cleared the traffic to enable Sai Baba to return to his Ashram. Most devotees expressed disappointment at not being able to see the Viswarupa Darsanam.

Further Reading

Other articles on the Sai Baba moon issue at: https://barrypittard.wordpress.com are:

Sai Baba Fails To Appear In The Moon, IANS Reports

Is Indian ‘Godman’ Sai Baba’s Moon Waning Still Further

………

Robert Priddy: Sai Baba postpones moon buggy ride

General

The Decline and Fall of the Showman Empire

The BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami’ – A Revision

Note: Many surfers used the following search terms to get to the articles at https://barrypittard.wordpress.com on the Sai Baba moon issue:

Sai Baba on moon
baba in moon
sathya sai baba in moon
satya sai baba in moon
saibaba on moon
moon appear satya sai

Posted in Neglected/sidelined News, New Age, Rationalism, Religion, Sai Baba, Skeptics, Spirituality, Theology, Theosophy, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: | 9 Comments »

Sai Baba Fails To Appear In Moon, IANS Reports

Posted by Barry Pittard on October 5, 2007

In the last hours, many Sai Baba devotees have received yet another of many setbacks to expectations that he would perform, as he has so many times promised, this or that great miracle.

sai-baba-fails-to-appear-on-moon.jpg

Of course, my dear reader may have noticed that at least Sai Baba’s afro hairdo has been seen quite clearly on the moon on not a few occasions. On the other hand, his hair has considerably thinned in recent years, despite his prophecy that he would not age after his 60th birthday.

In this case, IANS (Indo Asian News Service) reports:

“It all started when an official of the Sai Trust announced that the godman would make a “moon appearance” 6-7 pm and asked devotees to proceed towards the airport”.

Several news services have released the IANS (Indo Asian News Service) feed, including Sify.com HERE:

Sai Baba’s moon miracle fails
Friday, 05 October , 2007, 00:05

Puttaparthi: Thousands of people gathered at the airport here on Thursday night after word spread that controversial godman Satya Sai Baba would be “sighted” on the moon – but returned disappointed when the “miracle” did not happen.

The 81-year-old Sai Baba was also present at the airport and later returned to his ‘Prshanti Nilayam’ ashram here in Anantapur district.

It all started when an official of the Sai Trust announced that the godman would make a “moon appearance” 6-7 pm and asked devotees to proceed towards the airport.

Thousands of the Baba’s devotees from neighbouring villages rushed to the airport but were disappointed as a cloud cover hid the moon. They waited for an hour before dispersing.

Police had a tough time in clearing the traffic on the airport road to enable the Baba to return to his abode amid tight security. There was no word from Sai Trust as to why the ‘miracle’ failed to materialise.

His devotees believed that the clouds played spoilsport while rationalists termed it an attempt by the Sai Trust to revive the Baba’s waning popularity. IANS.

Further Reading

Subsequent articles on this topic at: https://barrypittard.wordpress.com are:

Sai Baba Fails To Grant Great Moon Vision. Endangers Crowds (‘Vision here refers to what is called in Hindu classic sacred literature viswarupa darshanam or universal, cosmic vision of the divine, such as that depicted in the Bhagavad Gita as being conferred on Arjuna by Lord Krishna at the time of the Kurukshetra battles. Little wonder, then, the rush of devotees to the Puttaparthi airport!).

Is Indian ‘Godman’ Sai Baba’s Moon Waning Still Further
Quote from this Barry Pittard article: The DNAINDIA news service reported that Sathya Sai Baba’s chief translator and personal India and international emissary, Professor Anil Kumar, has acknowledged the extraordinary traffic and crowd snarls occasioned by Sai Baba’s trip to his private airport at Puttaparthi.

It is reported that India’s most famous and controversial guru was at the airport in his car on the evening of Thursday October 4, 2007, which got badly detained by unruly crowds. He would be present, it was believed, to preside over a profound mass vision that he, as God, would perform. An Indo Asian News Service (IANS) staff writer reported …” etc. See article
……………….

Robert Priddy – who goes on to demolish the story with some real, as opposed to lunatic, moon facts – writes in his article Sai Moon Man that RA. Ganapati, the Tamil scholar and much-read hagiographer of Sai Baba, wrote that on December 8, 1973, on a stop with Sathya Sai Baba between the Puttaparthi ashram (Andhra Pradesh) and Brindavan, Whitefield via Bangalore) ashram (Karnataka), devotees threw stones at a wood-apple tree and brought down one unripe fruit, and quotes Ganapati:

“Svami bent down and picked it up. Holding it between the thumb and forefinger He said, “Here is the moon”! When He closed His palm over the piece for an instant and opened it again, the fruit was no longer found. Instead an unusual article was in his hand. It was a translucent sphere. The sunlight was gorgeously reflected out of its surface. Though as a whole it was luminiscent there were several dim and even dark spots inside. Multi-hued veins of minerals could also be seen. Superficially smooth-surfaced, it revealed elevations and depressions inside.

“The mini-moon, made up of all the ingredients of the moon”, observed Baba.
Only a few days before, the newspapers had carried photographs of both sides of the moon transmitted by spacecraft. All their features could be precisely perceived in this three-D-mini-moon. More than that, it was refracting the spectrum of colours in sunshine. The party enjoyed the picnic in the glades. Svami held up the mini-moon finally to sunlight. The solar rays glancing off the outer rim sprayed gold. “Do you see the moon rise?” asked Sai, as pleasing as the moon itself. With one more folding and unfolding of His hand, the mini-moon set! It had returned to its old wood-apple birth! (
Baba: Sathya Sai, by Ra. Ganapati, p. 83f).

Note: Indo Asian News Service has fed news that has helped break the long decades of most of the Indian media to run any story inimical to Sathya Sai Baba. See Paul Lewis’s article The Indian living god, the paedophilia claims and the Duke of Edinburgh awards in one of the top British newspapers The Guardian, which, amazingly, IANS was able to get into sections of the Indian press previously silent on many Sai Baba-related scandals.

the-indian-living-god-the-paedophilia-claims.jpg

Note: Many surfers used the following search terms to get to the articles at https://barrypittard.wordpress.com on the Sai Baba moon issue:

Sai Baba on moon
baba in moon
sathya sai baba in moon
satya sai baba in moon
saibaba on moon
moon appear satya sai

Posted in Miracles, Neglected/sidelined News, New Age, Rationalism, Sai Baba, Skeptics, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , | 10 Comments »

Indian Gurus Stifle India’s Chance To Excel

Posted by Barry Pittard on October 1, 2007

Intense and blind faith in gurus, such as one finds endemic in India, shames a great many of her otherwise educated individuals, including scientists. It jeopardizes her opportunities to gain unstinting international respect.

Guru Worship

Still flinging themselves passionately at the feet of gurus, and worshipping them as God incarnate, they ignore the gurus’ absurd pronouncements on matters scientific. This would matter badly enough if the gurus were small local gods and demigods, because no communities should need to suffer from such gross ignorance and superstition, which always tend to spread, anyway. However there are many gurus in India who have vast followings and they are extremely powerful and influential. They also attract many young, impressionable people from many countries. Because I lived lengthily in India, living with some wonderful Indian families, and worked beside Indians from a wide array of backgrounds and religious and non-religious affiliations, I was able to gain a sense of how deeply ashamed many thoughtful and sensible Indian people are of these gurus and the harm that they do.

Some Indian Gurus Attract Millions of Followers

Sai Baba, to take one of a number of instances, is worshipped as God incarnate by millions, and his devotees have numbered a series of prime ministers, presidents, as well as countless other power brokers in the highest echelons, often irrespective of party affiliation. 

Guru Worship Poses Grave Harm to India’s International Reputation

These mental gymnastics that allow so many educated Indians to listen to the utterest balderdash from gurus like Sai Baba, will increasingly shame India before the world as she vies for superpower status, and as the international spotlight falls increasingly on her. She may not be stage-struck, but she is, all-too-often guru struck. If she were to manage to secure genuine moral highground, enough countries might feel greater pleasure doing business with her, in preference to China, with her continued and huge-scale human rights abuses. (Not that India does not have to address many very serious human rights abuses). But how can she, when she is in such a parlous mess in so many areas?

Another India, Another Time

One of the greatest privileges I ever had was, in my years spent in India, meeting a number of wonderful individuals who not only faced with dignity, integrity and courage the evils of British imperialism but also the oppressions meeted out during Mrs Indira Gandhi’s 21-month 1975-1977 Emergency. Some Judges I met had made the grand refusal to see good laws perverted, and made great sacrifices, including jail, to show their non-cooperation. They reminded me of Sir Thomas More the Lord Chancellor of Tudor times who stood up to his monarch, Henry VIII, one of the most absolute of history’s rulers, and was prepared to be tortured and to die for doing so. Those I met who were in the Indian army were of an era when there was a great pride taken by the Indian people in their armed forces and whose behaviour was in such marked to distinction to her perpetually cruel and hated police forces. 

Perhaps only younger and more questioning generations of Indians will be able to make the difference, and that can only be when  gerontocratic ruling hands are prized from their deadly grip at the merciful time of death of these incredibly corrupt individuals (most of them men!).

Below, which I excerpt from an article by Robert PriddyGlobal Warming and Prophecies – is but one example of the crass scientific ignorance I refer to:

Sai Baba has evidently picked up some stray thoughts from visitors and his educated servitors about the ozone layer and CO2 pollution and has mentioned the problem in a few sentences.

We see that Sai Baba was unaware that CFC gases were the primary cause of ozone depletion, for he believes that tree-planting (afforestation) could correct ozone depletion. He is ignorant of the science and obviously confuses ozone depletion with CO2 increase.

Further Reading

Indian Media’s Reticence on Top Guru, Sathya Sai Baba, Weakens

Quote: “Breaking decades of virtual Indian media silence on comment critical of Sathya Sai Baba, a number of major Indian news organizations have run (mostly November 22, 2006) the Indo-Asian News Service (IANS) report on Paul Lewis’s article in The Guardian, ‘The Indian living god, the paedophilia claims and the Duke of Edinburgh awards’“…

Sai Baba’s “Back Yard” Still A Mess

Quote: “Will more Indian activists Speak Out? Activism from within India against Sai Baba and his worldwide cult, the Sathya Sai Organization, and other corrupt gurus is crucial. Activists know best their own culture. It would be good to see many more critics than the courageous B.Premanand and Swami Agnivesh and a handful of others speak out against the abuses” ….

Who In India Will Stand out Against Abuses?

Quote: “According to reports by Sanjoy Majumdar, BBC New Delhi and Tim Sullivan of Associated Press, there have been some recent populist stirrings in India against corruption and its cover-up. Not that there have not long been those Indians who have stood up valiantly against these. One may hope that the groundswell will come to include corrupt gurus”….

Posted in Neglected/sidelined News, Rationalism, Religion, Sai Baba, Social and Politics, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »