Call For Media and Government Investigation

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

Archive for February, 2010

Reply To Claimer of Spiritual Enlightenment (Yaani Drucker Correspondence) Part 5

Posted by Barry Pittard on February 28, 2010

Continuing from:  Reply To Claimer of Spiritual Enlightenment (Yaani Drucker Correspondence) Part 4 …. , my response to Yaani Drucker, who claims on her website to be enlightened, and to “Have truth, will travel”. She wrote to me that:

“I am happy to discuss and debate issues. I have responded to every issue you raised”.

Really? On the one hand, Ms Drucker – without, it must happily be said, resorting to the nastiness of so much correspondence that former devotees have long received from continuing devotees – has kept in touch. That individuals can so exchange is a considerable value in itself, and one which the Sathya Sai Organization have singularly failed to enjoin. What she does share with so many other Sai Baba apologists is the tendency to jump to conclusions that are simply not true. Many former devotees HAVE had much attention from Sathya Sai Baba. They DID get interviews. They were NOT disgruntled. Many were noted in the Sai devotee community – often for many decades – as highly motivated and deeply dedicated. The Druckers and so many others do former devotees great dishonor. To her credit, Yaani speaks. But where is Al Drucker. He has been silent for so many years, and is widely perceived to have turned his back on various parents and others who have come to him in heart-rending circumstances. 

Given the compellingness of the allegations, many who have quit Sathya Sai Baba know that it is an ethical citizen’s duty not to be part of any cover up. Ms Drucker shows no evidence of any purposive clicking on the links (those that appear in this series). She does not stop to consider that many who are now former devotees once reacted like she does. It has been a journey of great inner torment BUT, for some at least a time of deeper growth and compassion. The evidence for Sathya Sai Baba’s (and some of his servitors’) abuses are very great. She says “Al and I are both fairly intelligent, not so easily bamboozled”. What she fails to see is that many former devotees, too, can make the same claim (although, in modesty or in avoidance of begging the question, they may not indeed wish to!). The other day she wrote:

“You are not holding the big picture, you who have been a professor in His university. I try to understand what would motivate you to become constricted in your vision? Perhaps you did not receive direct attention from Swami, so you are disgruntled? Or you for whatever reason did not experience His omniscience, omnipotence and omnipresence in your personal life. Al and I both have countless examples from our personal lives to draw on, therefore we do not question Baba’s divinity, nor his inscrutable ways. Al and I are both fairly intelligent, not so easily bamboozled”.

However, readers who appreciate norms of language, logic and sticking to points raised will see clearly that Ms Drucker veers (not at all, I think, meaning to be dishonest) away from issues put to her. She also reveals a strong tendency to assume that her view of strange events in the presence of Sathya Sai Baba must be the correct one.  Absolutist thinking is going on here. In fact, the state of scientific knowledge DOES allow us to make eminently reasonable alternative interpretations of what Ms Drucker takes to be inviolable truths (a word for which Ms Drucker’s views would surely require a capital ‘T’). She writes:

“I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that Sai Baba knows He is not his body. Once a young man from Sweden requested Baba’s permission to give Baba a hug. When Baba obliged and the young man wrapped his arms around Baba’s torso, his arms wrapped around an empty robe  – there was no body to make contact with. I met this man personally. Once in an interview I was touching Baba’s feet. He turned abruptly away in displeasure, because I had asked Him to take Al back, yet His feet did not move with the rest of His body. This would have been impossible had he not transcended nature’s laws in that moment. These are a few of many examples where Baba demonstrates that He clearly manipulates the laws of physical reality, because He can.  If He has these powers, He is certainly not driven by personality disorders, but rather does all that he does for the highest good for all, in the most efficacious manner possible”.

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Yaani Drucker’s email comments and Barry Pittard’s responses

Al and I were black listed after we married. That means we have had nothing to do with the Sai organization since 1990 or rather the Sai organization has had nothing to do with us.

I’ve long known various serious aspirants who, though they have greatly loved Sathya Sai Baba, felt a great sigh of relief when he guided them to do their own practices, without recourse to the Sathya Sai Organization. He says that it is THE divine organization on earth, and that through it he will save the world, mostly in his own lifetime. He had better hurry his steps. Despite his statement on his sixtieth birthday, he has aged badly, makes terrible blunders, and our reports indicate that he sometimes sits and weeps, mutters away inanely, walks round in circles, and so on. Many of his prophecies have proved wrong, and his promised cures not eventuated. See: Sathya Sai Baba, 83. Health Critical. Some Key Links . Huge Sai Baba Gaffes .

We have occasionally and sporadically been invited to be guest speakers, in a private rather than official capacity. Al is one pointedly focused on Advaita Vedanta. My approach to truth is through the teaching of Sai Baba and of A Course In Miracles, which helped me to understand and deal with my rape experience. While Al continues to receive recognition and adulation as a prominent Sai devotee, my experience has been rather the opposite. Sometimes I am invited to functions, but it is likely just a courtesy, as I am the great Al Drucker’s wife. I was essentially shunned at the ashram as the seductress who stole Al Drucker from Sai Baba.

I am reminded of one after another of these kinds of occasions. It is such a scenario:  Situations are trumped up; facts are cruelly twisted; both the targets and the other devotees tell themselves “it’s all Baba’s leela’/test of faith”, etc., many devotees straightway believe the worst of people who they have known for years to be sterling individuals and loving co-workers; there is the utmost shunning; dearest friends of colleagues suddenly drop off; and so on …. Painful stuff! Though the enlightenment you claim to have may lift you into serene regions above such matters, for most people such events are calamitous – affecting health, finance, trust, family, relationships, and more …. Perhaps their fingers tremble too greatly to tune into your kind of supreme ‘radio station’.

I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that Sai Baba knows He is not his body. Once a young man from Sweden requested Baba’s permission to give Baba a hug. When Baba obliged and the young man wrapped his arms around Baba’s torso, his arms wrapped around an empty robe  – there was no body to make contact with. I met this man personally.

Jaani, I have long traveled. There are many such accounts along the pilgrim way, and on many paths, and even not on paths …. It is important not to be seduced by phenomena.

Once in an interview I was touching Baba’s feet. He turned abruptly away in displeasure, because I had asked Him to take Al back, yet His feet did not move with the rest of His body. This would have been impossible had he not transcended nature’s laws in that moment.

Can you think of no alternative explanation? There is various evidence that many people have extraordinarily apparently supraphenomenal experiences, both in his physical presence and far beyond it. Yet experiences beyond the reaches of our current scientific knowledge are documented throughout history. Go to this or that other e.g., ashram and one hears repeatedly of the extraordinary – except attributed to this or that guru/saint etc. Certainly, he has a strong intuitive psychic power, and yet does a lot of cold reading. Further, we have reports of servitors feeding him information gained from – to cite but one example – the front office, certain seva dals, his security and intelligence wing, and by other means! (Remaining Sai devotees, too, have caught him out, but lapse into silence about it). Whatever may be said of some phenomena, he has often been shown to ‘materialize’ objects that have been secreted under his cushion and other places. As but a small sample, see:

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

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

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

(By the way, why would you want Al to be “taken back”. Isn’t Al right into cultivating the formless apprehension of the divine?)

Barry

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This series continues soon …..

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Further Reading

Dangerous to Rationalize Rape. A major Sathya Sai Baba Follower’s Example

Barry Pittard Replies To Sathya Sai Center Rape Survivor’s Note To Him

Will the Real Professor Alvin Drucker Be Upstanding?

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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

Subscribe to Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

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Posted in Opinion, Psychiatry, Psychology, Psychotherapy, Religion, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , | 7 Comments »

Reply To Claimer of Spiritual Enlightenment (Yaani Drucker Correspondence) Part 4

Posted by Barry Pittard on February 26, 2010

Continuing from: Reply To Claimer of Enlightenment (Jaani Drucker Correspondance) Part 3 …. , my response to Yaani Drucker, who claims on her website to be enlightened, and to “Have truth, will travel”. She wrote to me:

“And when we know who we are, we will know a little better who Sai Baba is. So the task at hand is to know yourself, rather than spending your time trying to pin a crime on Sai Baba. However if you wish to pursue that course, Sai Baba does say Inimical Bhakti is the fastest path to truth, so I am sure it is serving the highest good”.

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     Note 1: Ms Drucker writes that  “I am happy to discuss and debate issues. I have responded to every issue you raised”. But she had clearly not so responded in the proper sense of the word. She failed to answer points of crucial importance to those who feel deeply betrayed by leading figures in the Sathya Sai Baba movement who have long known the goodness of those who came to them in their time of greatest need. Notable among those who let parents who came to them in shock is Yaani Drucker’s husband, Professor Al Drucker, once a scientist with NASA. Ms Drucker has – correctly – said to me that he is one person and she another. However, we have on excellent and compelling record (ready if need be to show any court of law or responsible media or other bona fide researchers that he knew of the gravity of the repeated direct reports concerning Sai Baba’s sexual abuse of boys and young men. She has written to me that she had only heard “rumors”. 

Ms Drucker, with a quicksilver-like elusiveness, darts away from points. She gives over to vague abstractions, and leaves  trails of seriously undefined notions about how, if at all, her self-perceived spiritual enlightenment relates to people who need assistance with their traumas. She thinks she has the magic wand. Like other cultic apologists – but most assuredly without venom, it must be said! – she leaps to conclusion without understanding the nature of inferences, and the care needed to prevent them from being flawed. Her answers reveal no idea of what we have published, even though I have given her recondite Urls to a tiny portion of relevant documents. Those wishing to have more than one side to the Sathya Sai Baba phenomenon will require such information.  They will wish to think for themselves.

      Note 2: I had pointed out to Ms Drucker that it is important for survivors of severe trauma to seek qualified professional counseling, and also – bearing in mind that she is a public  figure – she has the responsibility correctly to model this kind of service to those who read her writings. One correspondent has written to me:

“You are not attacking Yaani, but questioning and also criticising her, which is not the same thing at all. The ideas she is promoting cause harm to others most certainly.  But she is not aware of that, as she is on a one-tract Absolute Truth trip. She can’t afford self-examination on the matter, and thus will not follow up those who have been harmed by the one she promotes and whose teaching she parrots”.

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Yaani Drucker’s statements and Barry Pittard’s responses:

This assumes that psychology has answers that TRUTH does not. I would disagree. In fact I would go as far as to say the only way to come into right relationship with any and all past traumas is to understand truly who we are”.

In actual fact, there is much impressive evidence that the body, mind and personality are one, not a dualism (ref. science of consciousness, neurology and philosophical neurology). Therefore, I want to say to you that notions which deny the interaction that goes on in the psycho-soma are very flawed, inept. And, yes, present their real dangers to human health and well-being. I do not resile from the notions of rationalization (in context) and danger.

I pray night and day for the uplift of all humanity.

Despite mammoth demonization of them, including by Sathya Sai Baba, many former devotees, too, pray as you do. They are also deeply involved in selfless service to others, as I have gathered that you are when I looked through your website. Others I’ve known of involved in the ‘Course of Miracles’ have those same deeply held attitudes and practices. Perhaps we have some former devotees involved in the ‘Course of Miracles’ – I would have to check. In any case, our range of social, cultural and educational backgrounds is tremendously wide.

I want no one raped, ever. It was a humiliating and degrading experience. I would not wish anyone to undergo such an experience for any reason. It is not justifiable nor does it have any redeeming lessons. I did use it to discover that I am not my body, and that who I am cannot be touched. In that way, everything can be used. It was not necessary toward my enlightenment. And it happened. I do not deny that it happened. In fact quite the opposite, I speak openly about it, only in hopes of helping other women to prevent drawing such experiences to themselves. How? Through a shift in consciousness from body consciousness to God consciousness.

Boys and men are raped too, may we add? And add, still further, that many individuals and families stricken by Sathya Sai Baba’s abuses have been shattered.

The second error is that I am NOT  a major Sathya Sai Baba follower.

Many Sai Baba devotees have held you as such, at least up until they learned that some changes (news of which swept wide sections of the world Sai community) overtook your Puttaparthi days. Your writings in which you refer to him in the highest terms could well convey that impression to your many admirers among the Sathya Sai fold. Your and Al’s talks – with your 1985 rape and the we-are-not-this-body themes being the focus – at Kingdom Hall in the UK in April 2000, for example, have been widely circulated, and a heroic status accorded to you. A sort of de facto ‘saint-making’ process goes on the devotees’ mind. It is a striking phenomenon, and I hope scholars and other professionals will study it.

What is more, in your writings, and in your emails to me, you extol him. You say:

“Sai Baba tells us there is no one more powerful than us”. And “Sai Baba has demonstrated powers of omniscience, omnipotence and omnipresence. I am convinced of His divinity and that everything He does is in the service of the uplift of all. He knows the past, present and future of each of us, and He knows how to transform the world into a world of peace, love and joy for all. In order to understand Baba’s actions we have to hold the big picture… And when we know who we are, we will know a little better who Sai Baba is”.

In writing to me, you still capitalize the word ‘Him’. Over the years, you keep citing him.

In reality, supposed ‘Sai miracles’ have never been subjected to the slightest proper scientific investigation. They are purely a matter of belief – and perception strongly influenced by it, and are all still open to alternative explanations. One needs, surely, to be much more cognizant than you are of how such beliefs can be generated. Your experiences supposedly proving Sai Baba’s non-body identification remind strongly of subjective illusions. It is common for one person to experience such, and not anyone else who is present. This points to the extreme power of suggestion some call ‘deep-trance hypnosis’. Those who have worshipped him as God Incarnate and concentrated their lives on him – constantly focusing on him and his powers – are in a condition of very high suggestivity whenever they get near him, or often away from him, too. They are constantly thinking of him, looking at his pictures, singing his name, listening to or viewing tapes about him, talking with others of his ‘glories’ and ‘leelas’, and so on. Have you not seen ‘hypnotized’ subjects on stage mistaking people for chickens or what have you? Milton Eriksen, Derren Brown and countless others have demonstrated such ‘illusions’ most effectively. See: Derren Brown’s Magic Trumps Sathya Sai Baba’s and Sleight Of Hand. The Sleightness of Sathya Sai Baba (Exposing film clips) . Serial Sex Abuse And Broken Promises of Miracle Healing . Sathya Sai Baba’s Amazing Predictions . Sai Baba To Be Seen In Moon? But Where Was Moon?

May I venture the idea that fearless looking at such information is a real test of the realized state in which you claim you live? Your website welcomes one to discuss and debate with you. I submit to you that the issues raised in these articles, to name but a few, are worthy candidates for such discussion and debate.

Continued soon   …………

Further Reading

Dangerous to Rationalize Rape. A major Sathya Sai Baba Follower’s Example

Barry Pittard Replies To Sathya Sai Center Rape Survivor’s Note To Him

Will the Real Professor Alvin Drucker Be Upstanding?

The Ways of the Mind – on the issue by a Swedish psychologist

Strawberry Fields Forever? plus comments on Jaani & advaitic doctrine

The Spiritual Search – a philosophical analysis of advaitic solipsism and social narcissism

God is everything, in everyone – as a spiritual teaching

Advaita – historical flight into abstraction and speculation

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

Subscribe to Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

Subscribe in a reader

Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

Posted in New Age, Opinion, Psychiatry, Psychology, Psychotherapy, Religion, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments »

Reply To Claimer of Spiritual Enlightenment (Yaani Drucker Correspondence) Part 3

Posted by Barry Pittard on February 24, 2010

Continuing from: Reply To Claimer of Enlightenment (Yaani Drucker Correspondance) Part 2 …. , my response to Yaani Drucker, who claims on her website to be enlightened, and to “Have truth, will travel”. She has explained that her “rape experience happened in 1985, in a house next to the Stanton Sai Center, on the same property as the  Sai center in S. California”. 

I have suggested to Yaani (who, by the way, strikes me as a decent and goodly person, albeit given to a terribly faulty inferences, and a tendency to be rather reactive), that those who have had such traumatic experiences need to reach out to an experienced, qualified profession, and that, in terms of public health outcomes, it is a dangerous undertaking to recommend a course of action which relies on faith or notions of enlightenment alone. She replied:

“Is it necessary for a rape victim to receive professional counseling? This assumes that psychology/ psychotherapy has answers that ABSOLUTE TRUTH does not”.

In one of her emails to me, she says:

“Anyone who has an ego, which everyone has except those who have attained enlightenment,  is in a state of denial, denial about the truth of who they are, and that includes most professionals. Just because someone has a PhD does not make him/her an expert in what is or is not enlightenment …

… I credit Sai Baba for my enlightenment, and it is in part because He was instrumental in my awakening that I am certain beyond a shadow of a doubt that He is who He claims to be”.

In fact, mental health professionals certainly do know a great deal about the mind’s coping tendencies. For example how, as a coping mechanism, it can ‘rationalize’ away painful experiences, such as rape. However, she is very dismissive about the role of psychologists. Would she deny the validity of the intervention of a doctor in the case of a broken arm? I would think not. Even if she were to be in some realized state, it would be proper to cognize these facts, given that she makes public recommendations about how to deal, via faith in a process, with situations like rape. What does this process require? It requires the giving up of ego. See Robert Priddy’s and his wife Reidun’s useful reference to this aspect:  Jaani Drucker: ‘the Ego’ misundertood and self-nihilation

In short, it would surely be responsible of Yaani Drucker to understand that people simply cannot do away with the ego in the way she – I think out of keen compassion – wishes for the rest of humanity. I think she sees the notion of ‘ego’ in a very simplistic, blank-and-white way. People DO need professional assistance in the face of ordeals of the sort that she has passed through, no less that those with broken bones need the services of a doctor, and this fact needs to be reflected in the way in which she promotes, as she does on the internet, her services.

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Note 1. Ms Drucker writes that  “I am happy to discuss and debate issues. I have responded to every issue you raised”. We shall further see, based on her own responses, in the next posts whether she has. I submit that her self-documentation – in which, a number of times, she draws attention to what she views as her own “purity of heart” –  is very exposing of how Sathya Sai Baba so strongly misleads others into misleading still others.

Note 2. Ms Drucker dismisses and scorns ‘clinical psychology’ as 
if that were the whole of it. But there are many branches of 
psychological investigation and professional therapies, all of which 
are aware of  reactions to the traumatic experience she endured. There is 
analytic psychology, ego psychology, existential psychology,  
( Wikipedia lists 66 types of psychological theory) . Common to the 
main branches and many others is an understanding of the nature and 
importance of reactions like ‘rationalization’, ‘repression, 
‘displacement activity’. ‘obsession’ , ‘delusions of grandeur’, ‘post 
traumatic stress disorder’, ‘narcissistic defence’ and a wide range of
cognitive and mental 
disorders which can be triggered by traumas and other hurtful and 
deeply disturbing experiences.

Note 3. Earlier articles on this topic at Call For Media and Government Investigation of Sathya Sai Baba are:

Dangerous to Rationalize Rape. A major Sathya Sai Baba Follower’s Example and

Barry Pittard Replies To Sathya Sai Center Rape Survivor’s Note To Him

Will the Real Professor Alvin Drucker Be Upstanding?

The Ways of the Mind – on the issue by a Swedish psychologist

Strawberry Fields Forever? plus comments on Jaani & advaitic doctrine

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(Yaani Drucker): There are many distortions in your assumptions. I do not rationalize rape.

I am thankful for your comment here – it reminds me that, in my writing, I shall need to make very clear distinction concerning uses of the word ‘rationalization’. It does not mean, of course, justification. That you would never justify it is abundantly clear in your writings on your website, and in your emails to me. Indeed, you fully supported the notion that the man who raped you should face police prosecution. Rather, the ‘rationalization’ process I have in mind is that described in so many schools of psychotherapy, psychology and psychiatry. It is what the mind does when an individual goes through significant trauma. One example is a retreat into euphoric states, with strong presentations that all is well. A quick pointer is the Wiki article entitled: ‘Rationalization (fallacy)’.

You refer to your inimical attitudes towards psychologists in your last email. But my point is this:  even if you were correct in saying that you are spiritually enlightened, and had successfully transcended trauma, is it reasonable to suppose that individuals at large can reach such a state, and can dispense with psychological or other trauma counseling? This is where your quick dispatch of psychologists etc., in your last email is concerning. Is it not a point that you will need to be very clear about? And to discuss with rigorous thinking-through of issues, especially given that you are a public person? I see a danger, and it has nothing to do with any notion of about lying. At the center the rationalization process is a powerful unconsciousness of the contradictions and dissonances.

In the field of psychological trauma, one of the grave concerns is this:  that there are many who genuinely, but mistakenly, think they have – e.g., via ‘higher’ revelation or one sort of ‘awakening’ or another – the answers, and, what is more, thus become role models to others. On your website, you say ‘have truth, will travel’. So many other websites of individuals on so many other paths make like claims. Who can distinguish between those of you who claim realization? How can one get around to testing the plethora of claims? However, there is a body of clinical experience which DOES have testability in application to trauma, and this is being applied day in and day out in hospitals and clinics throughout the world. The question is:  are your pages, in this light, responsible? In your last email, you said: “Is it necessary for a rape victim to receive professional counseling?”

To Be Continued Soon ….. 

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Further Reading

Dangerous to Rationalize Rape. A major Sathya Sai Baba Follower’s Example

Barry Pittard Replies To Sathya Sai Center Rape Survivor’s Note To Him

Will the Real Professor Alvin Drucker Be Upstanding?

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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

Subscribe to Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

Subscribe in a reader

Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

Posted in New Age, Opinion, Psychiatry, Psychology, Psychotherapy, South Asia, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

Reply To Claimer of Enlightenment (Yaani Drucker Correspondence) Part 2

Posted by Barry Pittard on February 22, 2010

Continuing from: Reply To Claimer of Spiritual Enlightenment (Yaani Drucker Correspondence) Part 1 Posted by Barry Pittard on February 20, 2010 …. , my response to Jaani Drucker, who claims both in correspondence and on her website to be enlightened, and to: “Have truth, will travel”. In an email to me, she says:

“Baba demonstrates that He clearly manipulates the laws of physical reality, because He can”.

In another email to me, she says:

“Sai Baba has demonstrated powers of omniscience, omnipotence and omnipresence. I am convinced of His divinity and that everything He does is in the service of the uplift of all. He knows the past, present and future of each of us, and He knows how to transform the world into a world of peace, love and joy for all”.

She put the question to me:

“Is it necessary for a rape victim to receive professional counseling? This assumes that psychology/ psychotherapy has answers that ABSOLUTE TRUTH does not“.

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Note: Ms Drucker writes that  “I am happy to discuss and debate issues. I have responded to every issue you raised”. But she has clearly not responded either in the spirit or the letter of this claim. There is no happiness. Despite the fact that she claims to be spiritually realized and gives workshops and writes on spiritual transcendence, there is no rising above the hebdomadal. Hers is an emotive and churlish reaction. The following is but a sample:

“You are simply not getting it. I have no stomach for defending myself against people who are threatened by my truth. I just have not time for it. If you had come to me without baggage we could hope for a debate. As only as you keep your junk on the internet in public view I will conclude that YOU are not open to honest dialogue”.

Her concerns are centered on herself, and certainly suggest the sort of narcissism referred to my very qualified and experienced psychotherapist friend who wrote:

… “My additional reaction to Yaani Drucker’s account of the rape is that if she can use her faith and spiritual references to overcome the trauma, then she is fortunate.  Such coping behavior is successful for her. (- not to imply that it would be successful for others). There is a psychoanalytic term, “Narcissistic Defense” which can explain how people turn  negative feelings into positive ones)”.

Jaani Drucker is a public person with a website, a book and a workshop schedule. Before I responded to her emails that came via this https://barrypittard.wordpress.com , I did a reality check and sent what I had written to several individuals of professional background, who are perfectly ready to criticize me if need be. I do not think any sensible and perceptive reader will perceive in at all the same terms as Jaani Drucker has perceived in her reaction to what I have written. She writes:

” I wonder whether you would consider removing your discrediting and unkind words? If so, perhaps there would be the possibility of an honest debate. Until then you demonstrate that you have already drawn your conclusion, that I am a dangerous energy that you need to protect others from, etc.”

My attempt was, in a polite way, to say that I thought her claims were excessive and to point out their consequences in the real world. If she wants to propagate her Truth, then she must expect that others will comment on it, and not necessarily accept it. She claims her good name is besmirched. But no,  if anything her good name is under question because of her support of Sathya Sai Baba, against whom evidence of many abuses (and not sexual ones alone) are subject to a great deal of evidence from many parts of the world. A world-class investigator, the BBC, in its many months of huge research for ‘The Secret Swami‘, interviewed many parents and others who alleged Sathya Sai Baba’s sexual abuse of young males, and other charges. The Assistant Producer, David Saville, told me that the researchers had found other primary witnesses of young male sexual abuse and that their names did not occur on our (extensive, international) lists.

Jaani Drucker defended Sai Baba on the formality that he has escaped justice. This is intellectually dishonest (though I get a sense that she does not mean to be). One would have thought that, via her contact with India and many Indians, she knows that the ashram officials and the entire Indian system of corrupt politicians and judges who worship Sai Baba have protected him from all accountability! As will later be seen, she says she only knows of “rumors” of Sai Baba’s sexual abuse. But she did not say whether she knows from her husband Alvin Drucker that many parents have complained to him of sexual abuse by Sai Baba. I pointed out to her that we have very reliable documentation. (I shall post soon what I cited to her).

How can she expect those whom she once knew and respected as Sai brothers and sisters to respect her when she will not answer such questions properly?

She has yet more recently sent me documents showing that she is a good person, as if this were the issue. It is not. Again the self-absorption and unwillingness to entertain that the many who have questioned Sai Baba’s conduct are good people too. Of course, like any of us (though we do not claim spiritual realization), she can have good intentions, and heart and decency and yet all the while be wholly misguided, and unwilling to face inconvenient facts or reply to pertinent and honest questioning in a coherent way.

I entirely refute her implication that “honest debate” is not possible in the public arena. She would be correct, of course, in the case of communication with fools who are nasty, and I leave the reader to judge whether I am of that ilk.

To be continued ….

————————————–

Barry Pittard responds to earlier email of Jaani Drucker:

Can you understand how your website appears to promote a ‘solution’ to the rape question – quite strongly – e.g., “Have truth, will travel“? Several people, including very qualified mental health professionals with long experience in the sexual abuse area, have observed how your website can be too readily interpreted as campaigning for recognition that rape and other terrible occurrences have an ideal answer. That is to say – if only people will follow what you hold to be truth. It may be that you cannot accept that you have – and I think without meaning to – promoted a very misleading ‘theory’ based entirely on belief. And this belief is one from which you may not be able to free yourself, for, if you were to free yourself without recourse to an in-denial situation, you would have to face the trauma.

You now explain that it was not to justify rape, but that it was to explain that rape is not really a problem if one will just recognize that one is not the body. This view goes against the fact that we all HAVE a body and violations of it have an extremely forceful effect on the psyche.

Jaani Drucker: It is something you would find in the Enquirer – I don’t know if you know what that is. It is a gossip magazine that digs up sensationalism to entice its readers.

Barry Pittard: I have heard of that appalling magazine. If you see mere gossip in what I have written, I think objective readers will not agree with you. I would make the same observation about the output of the most prominent writers critical of Sathya Sai Baba and his apologists – Robert Priddy, Brian Steel and the independent British author on religion and philosophy Kevin R.D. Shepherd or at https://barrypittard.wordpress.com or in the many who have left the Sathya Sai Organization (including major leaders). See:

The Late Leo Boogaard: A Dutch Voice of Conscience On Sathya Sai Baba

Stephen Carthew, A Voice of Testimony From Australia, On The Dangers of Cults

Sathya Sai Baba Critic Serguei Badaev: An Incisive Voice of Conscience From Russia

Letter from Stephen Carthew

Alaya Rahm’s Lawsuit vs Sathya Sai Society of America. (Joint Statement by the International JuST Group and the Rahm family (Al Rahm was one of the foremost of top leaders in the SS Org.)

Al Rahm’s Explanatory Letter To Sathya Sai Baba Internet Proxy Gerald Moreno

————————————–

Select Further Reading

Dangerous to Rationalize Rape. A major Sathya Sai Baba Follower’s Example

Barry Pittard Replies To Sathya Sai Center Rape Survivor’s Note To Him

Will the Real Professor Alvin Drucker Be Upstanding?

The Ways of the Mind – on the issue by a Swedish psychologist

Strawberry Fields Forever? plus comments on Jaani & advaitic doctrine

————————————–

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

Subscribe to Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

Subscribe in a reader

Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

Posted in New Age, Opinion, Psychiatry, Psychology, Psychotherapy, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »

Reply To Claimer of Spiritual Enlightenment (Yaani Drucker Correspondence) Part 1

Posted by Barry Pittard on February 20, 2010

Below, I respond to Yaani Drucker – who initially wrote to me. For many years, she and her husband Professor Al Drucker (formerly with NASA) have been hero-worshipped by many Sathya Sai devotees worldwide. Although not now formal members of the Sathya Sai Organization, their impact continues to hold a spell for many Sai devotees who have access to media containing their talks and writings. Ms Drucker has a website:  Not Guilty: Undoing The Illusion of Separate Existence. In the Services, Products and Related Links section,  she states:

“Connect any time to ask questions, participate in dynamic discussions or debates on the teachings of Sai Baba, ACIM and the Torah/Bible”.

The reader who follows this correspondence may soon be able to guage whether this claim is genuine.

Previous recent articles on this topic at Call For Media and Government Investigation of Sathya Sai Baba are: Dangerous to Rationalize Rape. A major Sathya Sai Baba Follower’s Example and Barry Pittard Replies To Sathya Sai Center Rape Survivor’s Note To Him

Ms Drucker claims to be enlightened, and says on her website: “Have truth, will travel”

She has made some facts very clear, although readers may decide whether I am correct in saying that she veers (I think not with deliberate dishonesty) away from key points that I have made. Certainly, she and I have a very different view when she says:

“Is it necessary for a rape victim to receive professional counseling? This assumes that psychology/ psychotherapy has answers that ABSOLUTE TRUTH does not”.

One the other hand, she makes clear that she is not one of those who claim:  God is in all, therefore a perpetrator is really God in disguise. She says:

“The perpetrator is one’s brother for we are all brothers and sisters, thus one is responsibility to help him come into alignment with who he is. I saw that putting my rapist in jail was better than letting him stay free to hurt others. If I had not acted and he had raped another woman, I would have been complicit as I see it”.

No matter how badly Sathya Sai Baba has treated the Druckers, many Sai devotees around the world regard the couple as recipients of his infinite, mysterious, subtle and untold ‘Grace’, nonetheless.

Note: Ms Drucker writes that  “I am happy to discuss and debate issues. I have responded to every issue you raised”. But is she happy to discuss and debate? And has she responded to every issue that I have raised?

——————————————

From: jaani drucker

Dear Barry,

Just look at your heading “Dangerous to Rationalize Rape. A major Sathya Sai Baba Follower’s Example.”

(Barry Pittard in reply):  This title refers to my view about the psychological state of being in self-protective denial. It exactly states my topic. Singularly inappropriate would have been to use euphemisms. ‘Dangerous’ refers to my view that, in the face of severe physical and psychological trauma, there is a danger implicit in modeling faith alone as the answer, without resort to well-qualified professional counseling.

A friend of mine, a psychotherapist with long experience in abuse matters, has just noted:

“My personal feeling is that no amount of rational persuasion can alter something as strong as one’s faith-based explanation.  Faith, usually supersedes the thinking mind in people who have been conditioned over time to rely on it. My additional reaction to Yaani Drucker’s account of the rape is that if she can use her faith and spiritual references to overcome the trauma, then she is fortunate.  Such coping behavior is successful for her. (- not to imply that it would be successful for others). There is a psychoanalytic term, “Narcissistic Defense” which can explain how people turn  negative feelings into positive ones)”.

In my email to you, I pointed out that, contrary to what you wrote, it is entirely clear that I never portrayed you as a “dangerous liar”. These were your words and assumption. It is a matter of substance, but you have not addressed this point – which any reader can verify simply by reading the words that were really on the page. See:  Dangerous to Rationalize Rape. A major Sathya Sai Baba Follower’s Example and Barry Pittard Replies To Sathya Sai Center Rape Survivor’s Note To Him . It is useful to address a point, rather than to quicksilver across to something other. In your emails, I sense a veering-away, a side-stepping of more than one point that I have raised. I may add that such a tendency is often observed in those in deep denial. There is a reactiveness, and it commonly does not relate to conscious dishonesty, but rather to ‘stuffs’ that are hard to face square-on.

—————————————

To Be Continued soon ……

—————————————

Select Further Reading

Will the Real Professor Alvin Drucker Be Upstanding?

—————————————

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

Subscribe to Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

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Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

Posted in Opinion, Psychiatry, Psychology, Psychotherapy, Religion, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Dangerous to Rationalize Rape. A major Sathya Sai Baba Follower’s Example

Posted by Barry Pittard on February 16, 2010

We know that  Jaani Drucker and her husband Professor Al Drucker have long known, and indeed been the guests of, persons who carefully investigated accounts of Sathya Sai Baba’ sexual abuses of boys and young men, and other serious abuses.

yaani-drucker

In an email to me (see link just below), Jaani Drucker, who was brutally raped in a New York Sai center in February 1985 wrote:  “what happens to the body is indeed not real, and has no effect whatsoever on who we are as immortal beings inhabiting a body for a moment”.

The fact is that many boys and young men (and others who have grown older) do not share, Ms Drucker’s notion. Neither will their families and many others.

My reply to Ms Drucker is here: 

Barry Pittard Replies To Sathya Sai Center Rape Survivor’s Note To Him

Posted by Barry Pittard on February 8, 2010

I wrote back to her, with no reply, so I posted the above article. Having now seen the latter, she emailed just yesterday to say: “I did not see your e-mail to me, so it must have gotten into my spam folder”. Her reply is scarcely a reply at all. Although her website states that she “has truth, will travel” and that she is happy to discuss and debate issues, she avoids responding to the issues I raised. 

Why will she not properly discuss or debate?

I would still like to know whether she sees no reason to defend the integrity of many former Sathya Sai Baba devotees for whom, over years, she and her husband had much respect for. They have long been extremely assailed – including with the assistance of prominent Sathya Sai Baba figures. Must they, too, be expected to live in the (perhaps rather Manichean) state of non-dualism which Ms Drucker in public discourse and on her website claims to be living in?

In her first email, Ms Drucker said, “As to Sai Baba – He needs no defense”. Whatever may be the case about that, it is clear from evidence from many parts of the world that boys and young men DO have, and have long had, need of defense against him. But there are those, including a number who were once in top positions in the international Sathya Sai Organization, who attest that Jaani and Al Drucker DID hear at first hand compelling testimony from families of (then) young males who have given accounts of his sexual molestation of them.

The issue is serious for most. Indeed, very keenly so for families who wish to protect their children against both harm and the bad advice that can lead to harm. In her second email to me, she writes:

“Is it necessary for a rape victim to receive professional counseling? This assumes that psychology has answers that TRUTH does not. I would disagree. In fact I would go as far as to say the only way to come into right relationship with any and all past traumas is to understand truly who we are. Then we see that nothing real can be threatened. We are all unaffectably whole and complete. When you know this at a deep level you are free of any past whether you were the victim or the victimizer. Then you have shifted out of the victim/victimizer paradigm into the God-consciousness where you know you cannot be a victim. This heals the past and assures you that you will not attract just experiences to yourself in the future”.

This is not what responsible parents will want their young to hear. It is not what mental health professionals think, aware as they are of how belief systems can be hazardously used to put survivors of abuse into states of denial.

Moreover, it strikes me that Jaani Drucker herself makes a very big assumption. Namely, that she has reached that high plateau of non-dualistic self-realization (in ancient Indian reckoning, that of advaita). Classic Eastern spiritual texts say that very few beings achieve this goal of yogic striving – (e.g., the Bhagavad Gita). 

Jaani Drucker extends such a notion in public discourse and across her website. It appears plain that Jaani Drucker is deliberately side-stepping points I put to her. Like so many well-informed Sai devotes, she entirely skirts issues but does not deny that he has long engaged in the actions that the rest of the world calls sexual abuse. In her second (just received) email, she says:

“Sai Baba has demonstrated powers of omniscience, omnipotence and omnipresence. I am convinced of His divinity and that everything He does is in the service of the uplift of all. He knows the past, present and future of each of us, and He knows how to transform the world into a world of peace, love and joy for all. In order to understand Baba’s actions we have to hold the big picture… And when we know who we are, we will know a little better who Sai Baba is. So the task at hand is to know yourself, rather than spending your time trying to pin a crime on Sai Baba. However if you wish to pursue that course, Sai Baba does say Inimical Bhakti is the fastest path to truth, so I am sure it is serving the highest good.”

At a cost of great individual and family sacrifice, former Sai Baba devotees from many countries have assisted in submissions to UNESCO, the FBI, Interpol etc), and spoken out in other ways. For example, the Rahm family (formerly among the most prominent devotees in Sai Baba’s worldwide movement), went to tremendous effort in standing forth to protect young males from Sathya Sai Baba, as in their extensive testimony to the BBC and DR, submissions to the FBI, and much more. See independent British author Kevin Shepherd’s:

The Alaya Rahm Lawsuit in California (at 23.6) and

Alaya Rahm’s Lawsuit vs Sathya Sai Society of America – Joint Statement by the International JuST Group and the Rahm family 

Has Jaani Drucker nothing to say about whether in Sai Baba’s international organization there should be proper processes in place for dealing with such serious allegations made by perfectly bona fide members of the organization? Have they no rights to be protected against such dereliction of duty that has been amply demonstrated in the Hislop letters. See:

Timothy Conway Ph.D – On ‘The Hislop Letters’

The Hislop letters – part one [Timothy Conway on Gerald Moreno]

The crucial John Hislop letters, Sathya Sai Baba, & Sathya’s defender Joe Moreno by Timothy Conway, Ph.D

In her earlier email, Jaani Drucker said,

“Is not the fact that He stays out in the open and has not gone into hiding, and charges have never been charged, evidence enough of His Divinity? Again, for pearls one cannot stay on the surface”.

Surely, Ms Drucker is being terribly naive. Countless offenders do not go into hiding. They prefer to tough things out. The retention of a public profile not closed to Sathya Sai Baba. He wields incredible political and religious power. There is a bleak scenario difficult to imagine for many outside India. The extent of corruption is immense. They need to count themselves fortunate that their democratic institutions tend to work more effectively. I have written of protections that the Indian power echelons afford him. See:

Why Has Sathya Sai Baba Not Faced The Indian Justice System?

Quote from this article:

“In 2001, the celebrated Indian advocate Kamini Jaiswal (who was a lawyer for the famous ‘Bandit Queen’ Phoolan Devi) attempted to mount, pro bono, a case against Sai Baba on behalf of a former Sai Baba devotee, Hari Sampath. apparently a former member of Sathya Sai Baba’s intelligence and security wing. They were thwarted in what lawyers, including eminent ones from different countries (their identities are available to bona fide investigators by writing me), have described by such terms as “a kangaroo court”. One used to democratic court procedures can hardly believe, as one reads the lawyer’s notes in transcript, that judges could be so blatant. See, Record of Proceedings document of Hari Sampath’s 2001 case against Sai Baba in the Supreme Court of India, and further comments on this case scuppered by Judges G.B. Patnaik and R.C. Lahoti with the concurrence of then Chief Justice Dr A.S. Anand”.

Sathya Sai Baba Disposed Judges Sathya Sai Baba Disposed Judges

Another example of the appallingness that can pass for Indian justice (often an oxymoron) is illustrated by the conduct of a Sai Baba devotee Judge,  Y. V. Anjaneyulu, in Sai Baba’s state of Andhra Pradesh. It is a judgement that contradicts India’s secular justice system and confounds those of our lawyer members who live in far more democratic countries than India who have seen the document. For this undeniable perversion of justice, see HERE.

In the face of all this (and so much other) testimony, where is Jaani Drucker’s compassion? Where is her sense of duty as a citizen, with responsibility towards transparency and accountability? Where does her “have truth will travel” philosophy lead to when she has so long been complicit in the workings of one of the most authoritarian cults in the world, the Sathya Sai Baba Organization?

————————————

Select Further Reading

Will the Real Professor Alvin Drucker Be Upstanding?

Inequality before the law in India

Liberhan Commission Report, India: Names Some Long-time Close Associates of Sathya Sai Baba

Prominent Indians Berate India’s Rife Political Corruption

Will A Newer India Throw Off Old Oppressions?

India’s Chronic Addiction To Anacronistic Gurus. Any Sea-change?

India’s Painful Experience of Corrupt Leadership

Hazards For Abuse Survivors Both Timid and Bold

Video Resources

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

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

http://home.hetnet.nl/~seduced/seduced.wmv
(21 MB, Modem)

————————————

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

 Subscribe to Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

Subscribe in a reader

Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

Posted in Opinion, Religion, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments »

Barry Pittard Replies To Sathya Sai Center Rape Survivor’s Note To Him

Posted by Barry Pittard on February 8, 2010

It is hard to convey to the general reader the extraordinary extent of appeal and significance of Sathya Sai Baba’s greater and lesser ‘apostles’. Prominent among these are Professor Alvin Drucker and his wife Jaani, who have long loomed large in the minds of the Sathya Sai Baba sect around the world. Central to this impact is a devotee psychology that goes as follows:
  
It is impossible for most to get an interview with Sai Baba or a glance or touch from him when he gives darshan (appears in public). However, by his infinite Grace, he has drawn special beings around him. As in the case of the disciples of spiritual luminaries down the ages, we at least – alleluia! – have them, the ripest apples of His eye … In their accessibility to us lies our mystical accessibility to Him.
 
Those who have seen these ‘apostles’ have, in a sense, seen the Father.
 
For some of those seen in this role, see the following articles (which contain further key links) :
 
 
For some background to this story, see:
 
 
 
At her website, under ‘Services, Products and Related Links’, yaani-druckerMs Drucker states: 
 
“Connect any time to ask questions, participate in dynamic discussions or debates on the teachings of Sai Baba, ACIM and the Torah/Bible. Our purpose will be to join in truth by sharing in the spirit of wanting only Truth and being willing to be wrong about everything we’ve taught ourselves thus far toward that end”.
Unless my reply to her contact with me (sent weeks ago) has e.g., accidentally ended up in her Spam section, I may mention that she has not responded to my (surely) courteous response (see below) to her recent email to me via my blogsite.  (After-note:  Ms Drucker has since emailed me, saying that she had missed seeing my email in her folder. I can respect this explanation, knowing that this mistake can happen. One day there may be a general solution for this problem).
 
A number of highly qualified mental health professionals have looked at Jaani Drucker’s account of her rape in a New York Sai center in February 1985. Their view is very different to Jaani’s understanding – which she puts in terms of spiritual “realization”.
 

Although Ms Drucker has at least written of her experiences in an area where most recoil from discussing their shocking experiences, there is clear professional opinion that the account she gives has strong and questionable assumptions, and which do not go near the advice professionals in psychiatry, psychology, psychotherapy etc., almost universally give to those dealing with abuse. Her article ‘Are You Ready To Stop Making The Unreal Real’ is HERE. My readers, who come from a wide array of sociocultural backgrounds, may well query whether this is the sort of reading which they would wish to see as embodying a role model, especially for the young and impressionable.  

Jnaani Drucker bears, surely, great responsibility.  She has portrayed her rape as a step to realization and advertised her wares on-line stating “Have truth, will travel”!!  Her reasoning is dangerous and close to pathological

 
Rationalization according to belief systems often leads to the driving of symptoms deeply and perilously underground. Indeed, even if a given person has somehow negotiated many of the dangers, their accounts of treating of such hold considerable risks to others who wish to follow the exceptionally unorthodox model evinced by Ms Drucker.
 
As I have suggested in my reply to Ms Drucker, there are some uncleared-up situations about information that shows that both Jaani Drucker and her husband Professor Alvin Drucker al-drucker-when-young-former-nasa-specialisthave known perfectly well – and directly so – of responsible, compelling accounts by those terribly stricken by Sathya Sai Baba’s sexual molestation of young males. Do they think that the large numbers round the world who make gut-wrenching report of his sexual abuses should resort to the Drucker approach? Indeed, as they have publicly outlined e.g., at Kingdom Hall at the ‘United Kingdom Sai Baba Retreat’, in April, 2000 …
 
Ex-head of the Sathya Sai Organization in Norway Robert Priddy comments on but one example that the Druckers should have no difficulty in recalling. See:  Top UK Sathya Sai Organization leaders left Sathya Sai Baba. He refers to a past head of the Sathya Sai Organization in the UK, Aime Levy and his wife Sandra:
“Aime later informed me that Alvin Drucker had – when pressed on the issue – confided to him and his wife while in Glastonbury. UK, years ago that one of the reasons he left Prashanthi Nilayam was because of the many American parents who used to come to his room and complain that their son or sons had been sexually abused by Sathya Sai Baba (I do have full proof of this if events should require it – responsible journalists and investigators can contact me for release of this proof material in confidence)”.
 Jaani Drucker’s note
 
The details of my rape experience can be found in Chapter 5,  Are you Ready to stop making the Unreal real? available free on my website. Perhaps it will help the reader to understand why what happens to the body is indeed not real, and has no effect whatsoever on who we are as immortal beings inhabiting a body for a moment. 

As to the rumor that Al Drucker was banished, again my take on that story can be found in the last chapter of the same book, at the same website. Things are not always as they appear on the surface. For pearls we must dive deep.

As to Sai Baba  – He needs no defense. Is not the fact that He stays out in the open and has not gone into hiding, and charges have never been charged, evidence enough of His Divinity? Again, for pearls one cannot stay on the surface.

May all beings find peace love and joy. May all the world be happy and blessed.

Barry Pittard’s Reply to Ms Drucker

Dear Jaani,
 
Thank you for your comment, and for the link to your website.
 
Your note is a breath of fresh air compared to the streams of almost unimaginable abuse, and various kinds of distortion Sathya Sai Baba’s devotees so often hurl against those former devotees who have stood forth at tremendous personal sacrifice, and indeed the serious misrepresentation by prominent leaders of the Sathya Sai Organization, including Dr G. Venkataraman, the deputy world chairman. 
 
I shall be glad to look carefully at what you have written.
 
There has long been a matter in my mind. There are those of indisputable reliability, who have known you and Al well, who have told me that you both know of the truth of the reports of young men and of various parents with compelling accounts of various forms of sexual abuse, as the law and the public would most certainly view it, by Sathya Sai Baba. Various parents have come with heart-rending abuse accounts, just as they have to others in the Sathya Sai Organization. If my informants are somehow mistaken, please kindly tell me so.
 
You mention the real/unreal topic. Perhaps you will know that, in vedantic terms, classic discussions about what is real and not real make very careful distinctions between paramarthika satyam and the “relatively real” level of truth (vyavaharika satyam). My former devotee colleague Timothy Conway Ph.D. writes clearly of this distinction in his piece that I cite below, where he discusses you. Many spiritual aspirants overlook important elements of the second understanding. Mind you, I have observed somewhere that, very correctly, the police were informed of your rape in the Sai center. In short, that those involved acted as responsible citizens in reporting the crime. There are those into forms of ‘spirituality’ who will not do this, saying, for example, that the rapist is the Lord in another form and that everything is alright. Another difficulty is that a great many survivors of rape and other forms of serious abuse do not reach out for professional counseling. My view is that no matter how far one may have advanced in any vedantic understanding, this process is a very important one – given, of course, the quality of the professional service. Would you agree?
 
In my article that you cite, I shall also be happy to point to your link, and to ensure that my article portrays the essence of your account. I can also check out what I have written in:  Ex-NASA Scientist and Wife Test Sathya Sai Baba’s ‘Grace’
 
Should you wish, I can send you my draft, before posting. Do please be assured of respectful discourse from this end.
 
Should you have time or wish to at all, please let me know whether there are any substantive misunderstandings in the following pieces that deal with your understanding of your rape, other than what you have mentioned in your Chapter 5. I can do my best to ensure that your viewpoints are properly represented. This may indeed be of help to many readers.  See, Reidun Priddy, Robert Priddy – “Two Articles In Response To Yaani Drucker’s Posting”, http://www.saibaba-x.org.uk/17/drucker.htm and Timothy Conway Ph.D. “My Concerns about Sathya Sai Baba”, http://www.enlightened-spirituality.org/Sathya_Sai_Baba_my_concerns.html and the psychologist Åsa Samsioe (who deals in her psychology practice with sexual and other forms of abuse) “The Ways of The Mind. On the rape victim Yaani Drucker’s denial and rationalization”, http://www.saibaba-x.org.uk/18/drucker.htm . Åsa in turn comments on words of a dear friend of mine, a psychotherapist, the late Elena Hartgering, whom you may remember from Puttaparthi days.
 
Jaani, I wish you Love across the great ‘divide’, and to Al likewise, whom, of course, I remember when we were both teaching within the Sathya Sai education wing – in ancient days,
 
Barry Pittard
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Further Reading
 

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

 Subscribe to Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

Subscribe in a reader

Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

 

Posted in Medicine, Opinion, Psychiatry, Psychology, Psychotherapy, Religion, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments »