Call For Media and Government Investigation

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

Sathya Sai Baba Cult Now Distraught and Broken, Like Its Founder In Last Years

Posted by Barry Pittard on November 1, 2011

In the article, Sathya Sai Organization Shields Its Accused Members From Investigation, (13 October 2011), I wrote:

On countless occasions, the international Sathya Sai Organization has either refused to deal with serious allegations outright or avoided all questions from dissidents and journalists. If they had any self-respect, truthfulness and regard for democratic ways, rank-and-file members of the organization would demand accountability and transparency. They would also be concerned about why so many respected institutions avoid association with their organization, and why political and government leaders refuse invitations to Sai Organization functions. Members need to heed their own feelings of misgiving at the explanations their leaders give to them”.

Former devotee outreach to key public institutions was enormous. This activity was a concerted international effort in which now former Sai Baba followers  – coming from many professional, trade backgrounds and cultural backgrounds – did their best, first, to warn of the danger of boys and young men coming into the orbit of Sathya Sai Baba.

As the participants compared their experiences, evidence – sometimes gut-sickening – fast mounted, other crimes and ethical betrayals came to our notice, as did the many contradictions and anomalies in Sai Baba’s published discourses. These amounted to a glaringly flawed corpus. They were officially published, but poorly monitored. (I have discussed the later editorial weeding of the many embarrassing contradictions, etc.,:

The Quiet Weeding Out Of Sathya Sai Baba’s Embarrassing Statements)

No truthful explanation would resolve the many contradictions in Sai Baba’s published discourses.  Academics such as Robert Priddy and Brian Steel have scrutinized much of this literature. Those who retaliated – chiefly Gerald ‘Joe’ Moreno – are so poorly educated, viciously name-calling, distortive in interpretations, and prone to serious offenses against logical argument that no serious reader can take them seriously. Indeed, Wikipedia banned them. To those coordinating activities, such as Glen Meloy, Hari Sampath, myself and, as time passed, Robert Priddy, the sheer volume and richness of evidence strikingly and repeatedly verified accounts.

In some instances, parents of boys and young men and other abuse survivors went to foremost heads of the Sathya Sai Organization, including Dr John Hislop, Dr Michael Goldstein, Phyllis Kristal, Sri T. Ramananthan, Dr Sarah Pavan and others.  These supposed pillars of righteousness shamefully ignored the complainants. The leaders exhibited text-book examples of that psychological denial so commonly found in autocratic, cultic arenas.

It is a terrible chapter in institutional abuse history. Let there be no ‘statute of limitation’! The terrible acts, sexual and other, outraged many young and innocent lives. Historians need to look at the sheer scale of the ethical betrayal. What is more, academics who duck for cover and refuse to study ‘difficult’ areas such as cults, should themselves be exposed. So too should those politicians and academics who, with a distorted understanding of what ‘liberalism’ really means. In their notions about not giving offense to various faiths, they are insipid in the extreme. In short, there is a farcical ‘political correctness’ – one that fears to give offense when, all the while, cults perpetrate great offense.

If society is to come to grips with issues of cultism, writers will need to get beyond just looking at more spectacular and dramatic cults like the Jim Jones or David Koresh cults. Society suffers greatly when there is no well-publicised, properly-researched, non-sensationalistic enquiry into the effect of cults on the rest of society.

For lack of understanding these less dramatic but, in some ways, no less invidious cultic phenomena, the Sathya Sai Organization continue to penetrate and influence, without, however, recruiting wider communities throughout the world. Among both their own membership AND in their outreach to institutions and governments, the Sathya Sai Organization leaders act as though nothing questionable has happened. 

Why should these leaders escape question? Their crimes of complicity are too great to ignore.

In processing the immense amount of work on testimony, and in supporting the Sai Baba’s devastated survivors, our international coordinators often found that many witnesses clearly had no knowledge of each other. Still further, evidence came from sources well beyond former devotees. Sai Baba had not only practised his sexual and other abuses on his immediate followers but on others who were spiritual seekers traveling through India from one ashram to another.

Despite the huge damage to it since 2000 – when we made professional submissions to major media, the UN, various governments, Interpol, FBI, and other foremost agencies – the international Sathya Sai Organization to this day, is highly evasive. We can expect this type of response from organizations with a great deal to hide. The ‘secret swami’s’ key followers are secret just as he was secret when Sai Baba hid his vast millions in currency, gold, silver and other precious commodities in his private quarters. Secrecy runs in the ‘Sai family’. Just as when he, complicit with local, state and national government leaders, concealed the facts about the 1993 killings in his bedroom. And likewise, when he and his accomplices engaged in terrible threats and bribes when then he concealed his (and some subordinates’) serial sexual abuse of boys and young men. And, likewise, scandals such as the water projects, apartments and other scams. All of which, and more, left a huge wake of human suffering. Over many years, including 2011, Robert Priddy and I have received highly confidential accounts in which profound sexual disorientation has happened to survivors of Sai Baba’s sexual depredations, and, sometimes, those of servitors close to him.

Although at much-reduced capacity, the Sathya Sai Organization, now in huge disarray after its founder died (April 2011) many years before the time he predicted, continues to act towards communities as though it is a respectable, conservative organization. This does not surprise – for, against massive odds, it struggles to find funding resources to match its incredible overheads.

Nor does it surprise that, as the organization continues to face such grave threats to its existence, it refuses to face questions from many quarters. These include institutions and people (typically wealthy and powerful) with whom the cult tries to link. The public damage to it is vast. Some members, naïvely, try from within it to reform the organization. But there is a sorry trail in which the Sathya Sai Organization has cast out long-respected leaders and other members who have been courageous enough to raise questions. Senior journalists from the several of the world’s top media and scholars from leading universities and others who have tried to investigate, are at one: this is a highly secretive, authoritarian cult.

Where can the Sathya Sai cult turn – its distraught, broken founder being now dead, except in on its distraught – broken self?

Select Reading

Will Sai Baba Keep Hal Honig Smiling?

Guardians of Our Young? Or De Facto Sexual Abuse Pimps?

Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

The Public PetitionInformation 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 go 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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2 Responses to “Sathya Sai Baba Cult Now Distraught and Broken, Like Its Founder In Last Years”

  1. […] for today the latest important summing-up of the Sathya Sai Baba situation by Barry Pittard:- Sathya Sai Baba Cult Now Distraught and Broken, Like Its Founder In Last Years Share […]

  2. […] Sathya Sai Baba Cult Now Distraught and Broken, Like Its Founder In Last Years […]

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