Challenging Historic Deification
Posted by Barry Pittard on November 24, 2007
In an age of Internet libel, stalking and various kinds of abuse against dissenters both on and off the web, it is no small undertaking for individuals to speak about their former affiliation with Sai Baba.
Strangely, Non-Campaigners Turn Into Campaigners
Not the least of difficulties in speaking out include considerable inexperience in campaigning – such as dealing with the media, Interpol, UNESCO, government ministries and departments, religious, political and civic organizations, etc. – setting up of websites and adjuncts such as an international petition. There are security problems such as hack attacks, attempts at insertion of viruses, trojans, etc.
Cultic Abandonment of Reason and Commonsense
There have been attempts by Sai Baba’s cult to denigrate and indeed in a number of cases libel former devotees. In their professions, trades and wider communities, those who have left Sai Baba as a matter of highest principle have long been known (and by many Sai devotees themselves, including close associates and even friends of many years!) to be individuals of integrity and sacrificial service to others. If a single incapacity of the cultists had to be pointed to, it is the profound failure to listen to what is really being said, without ascribing worst motives to those who are saying it. Common sense and decency are the abject losers.
Standing Up To Sai Baba Means Challenging Historic Deification
This (in the case of some individuals for many decades) was with one of history’s most powerful cults, and, arguably, a leader of such charisma and international outreach that it has not been a foregone conclusion (unless strongly challenged) that he will be ranked in the company of names such as Christ, Buddha, the Prophet Muhammad, Guru Nanak, and so on. He himself proclaims that he is the fullest earthly manifestation of the formless Divine, and that, effectively, he will be ruling the world before he quits it circa 2022 AD. See article, India Lead World? Sai Baba Says Yes. Robert Priddy No
Quotation from Petition of internationally networked former followers of Sathya Sai Baba, JuST (Just Seekers of Truth)
“The US State Department is aware of these many allegations of sexual abuse and in effect for all US travellers going to India, making specific reference to Andhra Pradesh State, where Sathya Sai Baba’s main ashram is located. In mid 2004, as referred to in the BBC’s The Secret Swami, the US State Department confirmed to the BBC that Sathya Sai Baba was, in fact, the Indian religious teacher referred to, but not by name, in its warning to US travellers to Andhra Pradesh.Further, a British MP has lodged questions in the House of Commons concerning possible risk to the children of UK citizens visiting Sai Baba in India.
UNESCO (and its partner University of Flinders, South Australia) officially withdrew from an educational conference planned for September 2000 at Sai Baba’s ashram under the auspices of the Sathya Sai Organization, citing ‘widely reported allegations of sexual abuse involving youth and children … levelled at the leader of the movement in question, Sathya Sai Baba’.In June 1993, Sai Baba passively stood by while six persons were murdered in his apartments in Prashanthi Nilayam independent township, his main ashram, known to be completely under his strict control. After discussions between Sai Baba’s officials and the local police, the police shot at close range and in cold blood killed four of these persons”. PUBLIC PETITION FOR OFFICIAL INVESTIGATION OF SATHYA SAI BABA AND HIS WORLDWIDE
There is also a Spanish language version of the Petition: PETICIÓN PÚBLICA PARA INVESTIGACIONES OFICIALES DE SATHYA SAI BABA Y SU ORGANIZACIÓN A NIVEL MUNDIAL
The News Stories Keep on Coming
COVER STORY: SAI BABA. Test of Faith. “As India’s most enduring god-man enters his 75th year, his spirituality rests uneasily with controversy”. By Amarnath K. Menon and Ashok Malik in Puttaparthi
Times of London
Suicide, sex and the guru. By Dominic Kennedy. “The reputation of Sai Baba, a holy man to the rich and famous, has been tarnished by mysterious deaths and allegations of sexual abuse”
Three men die after putting faith in guru. “Three British men have died mysteriously after becoming followers of an Indian mystic famed as a ‘god man’ and miracle worker. Sai Baba’s activities are being studied by the Foreign Office which is considering issuing an unprecedented warning against the guru to travellers. The Times has learnt that three Britons have apparently taken their lives after placing hope in India’s most popular holy man. One of them had complained of being repeatedly sexually molested by Sai Baba at his ashram in Puttaparthi near Bangalore”
‘I sought peace and couldn’t find it’ By Michael Dynes and Dominic Kennedy. ” Michael Pender, a student, hoped that Sai Baba would be able to cure him of HIV. Like thousands of devotees from around the world, Mr Pender went on a pilgrimage to Sai Baba’s ashram in Puttaparthi, southern India, expecting to find magic and divinity. Instead Mr Pender, known as “Mitch,” was found dead after taking tablets in the lonely bedroom of a hostel for the homeless in Highbury, North London. He was 23″
Divine Downfall By Mick Brown, additional research by Chloe Veltman. “The guru Sai Baba has left India only once, yet his devotees across the world are estimated at up to 50 million. They worship him as a living god who, at the very least, can change people’s lives and possibly even work miracles. But now his followers are bitterly divided by allegations that their guru has for years been systematically sexually abusing boy disciples summoned to his presence”
The Guardian – Article by Paul Lewis
For More Articles By Media. See, Exposure of Sathya Sai Baba. Media Source List