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

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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

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

Sathya Sai Baba’s Ignorance of Basic Scientific Fact, and Devotee Silence on This Fact

Posted by Barry Pittard on December 3, 2009

Dr Kanwaljeet ‘Sunny’ Anand of Arkansas, USA, was a George W. Bush Administration medical advisor. One might think that a physician of distinction would be on-guard about crowd estimates. Or, again, in treating highly questionable interpretations of sections of various scriptures as though they are established fact.

Many, however, are the cases where otherwise intelligent individuals, blinded by their fervent belief systems, abandon reason and commonsense. In a speech at Sathya Sai Baba’s 80th birthday celebrations in Puttaparthi – a talk widely exploited as propaganda by the Puttaparthi machine, for example by the Sathya Sai Books and Publications Trust – Dr Anand (who is assuredly not an expert on “all the major religious texts of the world”) said:

“The Advent of this Divine Form is referenced in the Book of Revelations of the Bible, in the Holy Koran, in the Vedas and Jaimini Mahabharatha, in the Guru Granth Sahib, and in all of the major religious texts of the world. Currently, Sri Sathya Sai Baba is worshipped by more than 100 million people from more than 200 countries in the world, but most of the world remains oblivious of His Presence”

This speech appeared at the Sathya Sai official site http://www.srisathyasaipublications.org/anand.htm but has gone from this link. A longer quote from it (than here) appears at the Brian Steel, along with his detailed commentary, at page cited below.

It is to no point (other than to reveal that they ceaselessly abandon their master’s teaching about right speech and action) that Sathya Sai activists resort to vituperative and personal attacks on those former devotees and other critics who expose the absurdities. It is a sure sign that they defend the indefensible – for example his claim that the life enters the foetus at four months and nine days – YET, contradictorily, that it enters at 210 days. Dr ‘Sunny’ Anand is a top expert in neonatology, and cannot possibly run his medical practice or teach his university student along the lines of the preposterous statements reported in Sathya Sai Baba official magazine, Sanathana Sarathi.

 

NOTE:

Quoting at some length Dr Anand’s remarks made at Sathya Sai Baba’s 80th birthday celebrations, the former Sathya Sai Baba follower Brian Steel – A New Celebrity Endorsement of SSB’s Alleged Divinity?  (January 2006) wrote that he had written to Anand:

“I recently managed to establish initial contact in order to ascertain whether he did in fact make and authorise the extraordinary statement …. At first Dr Anand stated he was happy to clarify the as yet unidentified statement, but when I quoted it to him, he declined to answer by email, inviting me, instead, to his home for a friendly chat. With equal bonhomie, he added that any further emails from me would be automatically routed to the Junk box of his professional email address. Since he did not see any reason to offer me his private email address, I instantly concluded it would be a waste of my time and money to fly 10,000 miles for the promised chat.

Although my initial question has still not been categorically answered, all I can – and must – do for the moment is to publish the alleged comments, because they are a part of a very powerful promotional public statement by the SSO (or, to be more exact, the SSSBPT, which is the publishing wing of the Organisation – just one of the network of official websites which have sprung up since 1999 to promote the guru who originally became famous for stating, rather disingenuously, that he needed no advertising)”.

————————————————————————

Further Reading

See the article by Jorge Reyesvera (an ex-devotee and Sathya Sai Organization leader, Mexico) on Sathya Sai Baba’s extraordinary Mahasivarathri 2002 discourse: 

Sai Baba and Magnetism – The Omniscient Sai Baba’s Massive Ignorance of Physics Exposed (1)  by Jorge Reyesvera

Robert Priddy

Sathya Sai Baba on the physical sciences

Dr.G. Venkataraman – physicist ‘explains’ Sathya Sai Baba

Barry Pittard

When ‘Divine’ Magnetism Becomes A Dead Weight

                                                                      ———————————————–

Barry Pittard’s comments in regard to the Public Petition) -:

Petition For Official Investigation Into Sathya Sai Baba Cult

                                                                                          ——————————————————

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

Posted in Medicine, Opinion, Religion, Sikhism, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Sathya Sai Cult Under Media Scrutiny In Australia

Posted by Barry Pittard on February 2, 2009

A fracas looms involving the Sathya Sai Baba cult about to appear on a leading national highly-rated program, Australian Current Affair, on Channel Nine. The segment is due after the 6.30 pm (AEST) News on that channel. The piece may appear tonight or soon after.

You can keep an eye on the Australian Current Affair website.

The segment was postponed last Thursday night because of the tragic news of the little girl being thrown of the Westgate Bridge in Melbourne by her demented father.

In anticipation, I’ve assembled some information and resources at: Sathya Sai Baba Cult Exposure By Major TV Channel In Australia , with the Stats already in a steep upcurve in the last couple of days.

The SWARA Upheaval

Brisbane staff (allegedly sacked under draconian circumstances) and disabled clients of SWARA, a charity solidly funded by the Queensland State Government, say that they feel overwhelmed by a highly autocratic power concentrated in the hands of a committee. They claim that this body has been heavily stacked with Sai Baba cult members, and that clear and proper professional policies are not being adhered to. They also say that the committee is one of a number of fronts for the Sai Baba cult, which accepts large financial support by the Queensland government but bends these advantages in a way unacceptable in many properly conducted comparable institutions in Australia.

SWARA, in Brisbane, the capital of Australia eastern seaboard State of Queensland, was founded by two wealthy philanthropic sisters who have had long and close association with Sathya Sai Baba, Moyia and the late Dorothy O’Brien, twins well-known as ‘The Pink Sisters’. The SWARA website states that the charity is  “A multidiagnostic service catering for those with mild-moderate intellectual, psychiatric, cognitive, neurological, sensory or physical impairment”.

The Australian Current Affair segment is expected to link the cult of Sathya Sai Baba (a picture of whom Channel Nine has already shown several times in promotion of the segment, along with the unfortunate scenes when a group of centre workers (who say there have been threats to their jobs) and disabled clients attempted to air their views publicly) with troubles besetting SWARA (Sunshine Welfare and Remedial Association).

………………………………………………………………………….

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)

Posted in Medicine, News and Politics, Opinion, Philanthropy, Protest, Religion, Spirituality, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »

Sathya Sai Baba Video. Too Weak To Cut Birthday Cake

Posted by Barry Pittard on November 25, 2008

See video which reveals Sathya Sai Baba, in November 2007, as unable to cut his birthday cakes any longer

minister-assists-ailing-sathya-sai-baba

High-powered Minister of State, Renuka Chowdhuri, has to cut 2007 for badly ailing Satya Sai Baba

For some time, he has had a mask-like face, suggestive of a degenerative disease.

sai-baba-looking-terrible-telegu-eenadu-picture.jpg

Living and Partly Living

The Ageless 'Avatar'

The Ageless

One Of Many Examples of Sai Baba’s Falsified Statements

Many people wonder that I look so young even at the age of 73. The reason is that I have the three P’s in Me. One is Purity, the second is Patiene and the third is Perseverance. It is because of these three that I shall remain like this for any number of years to come. (cheers)”  p. 302 Sanathana 11-1998


Further Reading At ‘Call For Media and Government Investigation of Sathya Sai Baba’

Sathya Sai Baba’s Amazing Predictions

There is no end to his failed predictions. In his February 1 16, 2007 (so-called ‘divine discourse’, Sai baba said:

“I intend to undertake a world tour, shortly.”

Wealthy Americans Prepare Mansions For “God’s” Visit

The guru, perhaps the most wealthy and politically powerful in India’s long history, claims that he will save the world in his own lifetime. He will, he says, preside over the greatest changes ever to occur in history

‘World Hindu’ by 2030. VHP’s Singhal Reports Sathya Sai Baba Told Him

One of India’s most powerful Hindu nationalist leaders, Ashok Singhal, who has an international profile in the Hindu world, has just told an assembly of political and religious luminaries in Delhi of a prophecy he says Sathya Sai Baba shared with him. The Organiser, September 14, 2008, reports …

Robert Priddy – former head of Sathya Sai Organization, Norway – at his blogsite Sathya Sai Baba Deceptions Exposed

Ageing and collapse in Sai Baba’s health

Sai Baba’s health – miracle or self-sacrifice?

Sai Baba says his close servants live for 100 years

Sathya Sai miracle of transformation of India?

Sai Baba’s failing health

Posted in Medicine, New Age, News and Politics, Opinion, Prophecy, Rationalism, Religion, Scams, Skeptics, Social and Politics, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Issues, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »

Puttaparthi and Cover Up of Health Hazards

Posted by Barry Pittard on November 6, 2008

Since matters of life and limb are entailed, every traveler appreciates honesty about conditions involving health. For example, proper notification by governments, tourist venues, businesses, and various other instrumentalities. Once Sathya Sai Baba’s highest profile western follower, a lecturer at his university at Puttaparthi, and a roving ambassador for him internationally, David Bailey has related:

“I know Sara Pavan who is the top anaesthetist from Australia who’s there all the time, and he said to me ‘David, you never, ever, ever let anybody come to this hospital because they do not understand hygiene'”. Source: Part Two – Transcript of David Bailey’s Account By Phone Of His Disaffection in 1999 (to Thomas Wiehe).

Puttaparthi A Disease Trap, Covered Up By Officals

A very different and frightening picture emerges regarding Puttaparthi, despite Sathya Sai Baba’s ashram there being called “the Abode of Peace” (Prashanthi Nilayam).  When he was a deeply committed follower of Sathya Sai Baba, Robert Priddy made notes of some of the health hazards met with. See Sathya Sai Baba Birthday Celebrations. Posted by robertpriddy on October 29, 2008.
Today’s visitors can decide whether these older observations hold true for the ashram today. Certainly, the modus of cover up has not changed, neither by the officials in India nor by key international servitors of Sathya Sai Baba. See:
Indulal Shah and Indian Government Cover Up
J. Jegathesan. Part of The Secret Swami’s Cover Up
Dato J. Jegathesan, a ‘Secret Swami’ cult top leader-roving ambassador

As I have stated elsewhere, Robert Priddy’s carefully and promptly taken diary notes over several years will prove an invaluable source for historians, media investigators and others interested in the Sathya Sai Baba phenomenon. See Priddy’s My Notebooks Covering Nine Visits To Prashanthi Nilayam (from 1984/5 to 1998). See too my articles Sathya Sai Baba’s Self-generated Mythos.
Robert Priddy was a national leader of the Sathya Sai Organization (Norway), and had access to all the internal correspondence of the Sathya Sai Organization and international meetings. For many years, he was a highly-respected friend of the late V.K.Narasimhan, one of India’s most famous and courageous newspaper editors, and, succeeding Professor N.Kasturi, editor of the official magazine Sanathana Sarathi, distributed worldwide.

Quotes

“The estimated numbers of persons during each of these celebrations was doubtless much in excess of the actual numbers. Figures of from 1 to 3 million have been suggested for the various birthdays!Sathya Sai Baba stated to several persons (Robert and Rita Bruce, V.K. Narasimhan and others) that 3 million were present, which was a total impossibility. V.K.N. told me several times that Sathya Sai Baba regularly multiplied numbers of actual visitors by 10!
……………………………
Apart from the infamous murders of 4 young men in Sathya Sai Baba’s bedroom in 18993, a long series of accidents, suicides and murders have been recorded – see some of them listed here.
……………………………
“At the 60th Birthday celebrations of Sathya Sai Baba at Prashanthi in 1985 there was a virtual epidemic of stomach ailments, especially among Western visitors. This was denied officially, no doubt so as not to put anyone off visiting as a result. One Western doctor who was present estimated those foreigners affected could amount to 80%. Many people who had been there confirmed that many were affected. Also, the usual throat and chest infections due to excessive clouds of dust – up to at least 2-3 metres high during the main celebrations which obscured objects even at short distances! That there had been any kind of epidemic, however, was publicly denied as baseless rumour in Sanathana Sarathi. One contributing cause of the excessive infection rate was the new Western canteen, where the refuse was dumped outside it upon which masses of flies bred which easily entered the canteen, then without any netting on the windows”.
Priddy comments on the reference to the canteen: “[This was confirmed by Al Drucker to foreigners who cleaned up the canteen afterwards – including myself]”.
Note: Al Drucker is an ex-Nasa physicist, whom Sathya Sai Baba has used extensively in his propaganda work.
Further Resources
Sathya Sai Baba Ashram Notebooks of Robert Priddy
Robert Priddy – Published Writings and General Postings. On Sathya Sai Baba and Related Materials
Sathya Sai Baba – Prashanthi Nilayam notes
“On the cesspool near the North blocks which cause horrific nauseating stinks for hours every day plus comments on how the money collected to solve this problem was misappropriated by ashram officials”. This note refers to: Directly Recorded Notes

Posted in Medicine, New Age, Religion, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Judge warned: Crippling disease won‘t stop pervert

Posted by Barry Pittard on July 21, 2007

Some devotees of Sathya Sai Baba – the ‘God’ worshipped by so many of India’s top power brokers (and others beyond) who faces worldwide accusations of large-scale, serial sexual molestation of boys and young men – claim that he could not possibly offend, if he ever did, because of his age and physical incapacity, and that therefore his current accusers are caught in a palpable deceit. 

ageing-rapist-wayne-chapman-still-dangerous.jpgsai-baba-in-wheelchair-2006.jpg

L. Ageing multiple rapist Wayne Chapman still Dangerous. (Boston Herald Photo Pool). R. An Ironside Sai Baba – not one to easily push around.

They offer no evidence concerning the nature of sexual capacity and ageing. Yet there is a mass of readings on the topic ‘ageing and sex’ in the popular press, let alone a wealth of information from Gerontology and Geriatrics. As ever, the Internet is an abundant source.  But why go looking for facts when there is a guru to defend at all costs? And the word ‘costs’ is more than appropriate, since Sai Baba’s worldwide cult has to defend many billions of dollars of investment in its notion that Sai Baba is about to rule the earth. Any dear reader who happens to be a billionaire, watch your money – Sai Baba is a consumate master in extracting it from you – without seeming to want it. See my article: Sai Baba, Kubla Khan, Citizen Kane, Bill Gates et alia

Of course, making Champion of the World may require Sai Baba to take a little more than Viagra or Cialis. 

Extract from: Judge warned: Crippling disease won‘t stop pervert
By Laurel J. Sweet
Boston Herald. Friday, March 23, 2007

Aging and Sick Sex Offender to Be Civilly Committed?

Whatever the wisdom of civil commitment laws it would seem that this fellow might qualify.  Increasingly, though, the states are going to have to contend with the high cost of health care in keeping aging and sick convicts behind bars.

Even though his aging, bloated body is confined to a wheelchair, a judge was warned yesterday a 59-year-old convicted sexual predator remains dangerous to children. A forensic psychologist assured Lawrence Superior Court Judge Howard J. Whitehead that convicted child rapist Wayne Chapman, who bragged he had sexually molested between 50 and 100 boys and even fantasized about killing some of them, “presents a high and unacceptable risk to re-offend.” “It just doesn’t go away,” Christine Schnyder Pierce testified. Chapman, an interstate predator, has been incarcerated for 31 years. Having served his time, he is hoping to retire in Massachusetts, but the Essex District Attorney’s Office is fighting to have Whitehead civilly commit him for life as a “sexually dangerous” person’.

Further Resources

Wikipedia, Sexuality in older age

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Posted in Medicine, Morality, Neglected/sidelined News, New Age, News and Politics, Opinion, Pediatrics, Philanthropy, Protest, Psychiatry, Psychology, Psychotherapy, Rationalism, Religion, Sai Baba, Scandal, Sex, Skeptics, Social and Politics, Society, Spirituality, Successful People, Theosophy, Uncategorized, World Issues, World Religions | Leave a Comment »

Sai Baba’s ‘Miracles’ Panned In Newsweek

Posted by Barry Pittard on July 19, 2007

From his observations of YouTube footage, in a Newsweek debate, Sam Harris opines that Sai Baba’s so-called miracles reveal him to be “a stage magician”. This view accords with that of many former Sai Baba devotees – who speak out about it – and of many devotees – who shut up about it.

You can see Sai Baba cheating HERE

Satya Purcell and Sam Harris Agree

www.exbaba.com has recently run in series an article by Satya Purcell, who, having been a member of the International Magician’s Society, exposes Sai Baba as a “bad magician”. Satya (given his name by Sai Baba) along with his mother and father, Sharon and Gary Purcell, were early Western figures at the commencement of the global spread of Sathya Sai Baba’s cult. He is the godson of famed early Sai Baba supporters, the multimillionaire husband and wife, the late Elsie and Walter Cowan. Sai Baba was alleged by the first major leader of the Western organization Dr Jack Hislop and others to have raised Walter Cowan from the dead in 1972. The details, including the medical documents, are hotly disputed. See, for example, Sai Baba’s miracles, an overview, Dr Dale Beyerstein, This book, by a rationalist and an academic from the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada, can be downloaded as a 100k zip file in .html format. Scroll down the Index to Section 3. for the material referring to Walter Cowan, which as an analysis, as is the case of the whole book, although dating from circa 1994, is still sharp and relevant.

Sam Harris-Rick Warren Debate Extract

Source: Newsweek.  The God Debate, April 9, 2007, page 3. LINK.

  • Author Sam HARRIS: Let’s go back to the Bible. The reason you believe that Jesus is the son of God is because you believe that the Gospel is a valid account of the miracles of Jesus.

  • Pastor Rick WARREN: It’s one of the reasons.

  • Sam HARRIS: Yeah. It’s one of the reasons. Now, there are many testimonials about miracles, every bit as amazing as the miracles of Jesus, in other literature of the world’s religions. Even contemporary miracles. There are millions of people who believe that Sathya Sai Baba, the south Indian guru, was born of a virgin, has raised the dead and materializes objects. I mean, you can watch some of his miracles on YouTube. Prepare to be underwhelmed. He’s a stage magician. As a Christian, you can say Sathya Sai Baba’s miracle stories are not interesting, let’s not pay attention to them, but if you set them within the prescientific religious milieu of the first-century Roman Empire, suddenly miracle stories become especially compelling.

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Posted in Medicine, Morality, Neglected/sidelined News, New Age, Opinion, Philosophy, Rationalism, Religion, Sai Baba, Skeptics, Spirituality, Theology, Theosophy, Uncategorized, World Issues, World Religions | Leave a Comment »

When ‘Divine’ Magnetism Becomes A Dead Weight

Posted by Barry Pittard on July 6, 2007

emperors-new-clothes.jpgSai Baba’s alarmingly many scientist and other (supposedly) intellectual followers must have to block ears and eyes when he opines on matters scientific. Heavily rose-tinted glasses can be particularly helpful.

He speaks, for example, of the nature of magnetism. Here, Sai Baba’s educated devotees provide a modern example of the Hans Christian Anderson story of the Emperor New Clothes (see story below) – where the emperor’s subjects saw naked discrepancy but, mystery of mysteries, didn’t see it! 

dr-ks-sunny-anand.jpgProfessor Dr K.S. ‘Sunny’ Anand, birth scientist, a top President Bush medical advisor who worships Sai Baba as God fully incarnate. Only rose-tinted glasses can ignore Sai Baba’s extremely inept statements on birth science.

In his March 13, 2002 Mahashivarathri discourse, Sai Baba said,

“So when I put My foot down,

the whole foot stuck to the ground. It is a little hard to lift a foot that is stuck. Wherever I walk, it sticks there. Whatever is held, it sticks to My hand. This magnet is not in everyone like this. This magnet is so powerful only in Divinity.”

Philosopher and social scientist Robert Priddy comments aptly on Sai Baba’s unscientific statements about magnetism and the nature of the atom HERE. In a recent blog, Priddy says HERE,

“despite all the billions of dollars in hand – (Sai Baba) has not made one inch of progress in getting international recognition from any serious institutions”.

Many Sai Baba followers are at the top of their professions in the armed and police services, government, the judiciary, the sciences, arts, finance, industry, sports, and so on. Of course, healthy-minded individuals see clothes as clothes and nakedness as itself. It is a worry when key world power brokers and their functionaries think that their guru wears clothes.

When Does Life Enter The Fetus?

Also primitive, and very exposing of Sai Baba, but seen and, every so mystically, not seen by his followers is his view about what time life enters the human foetus. You may view HERE scans of two brief extracts, run side by side, of Sai Baba’s entirely conflicting statements on the topic. They are extracted from two editions of the guru’s official magazine (distributed worldwide), Sanathana Sarathi – of a) September 1996 and b) April 1997. This from a guru whose devotees number many thousands of medical doctors. I take but one example –

George W. Bush Medical Advisor Joins The Emperor’s Subjects

Kanwaljeet ‘Sunny’ Anand (read in here strings of the most prestigious medical degrees and other qualifications) is one of countless Sai Baba scientists caught in the emperor-with-no-clothes syndrome. The media might like to interview him. But remember that Sai Baba’s followers typically avoid any challenge to their (non) thinking. They, like cult members the world over, race into hiding. Another thing they chronically do, as does their founder, is to hold up high examples of prestigious figures who go to Sai Baba. They are highlighted among his keynote speakers, and given VIP treatment – sometimes obvious to the public, sometimes only to those in-the-know. They are carefully cultivated.

Dr Anand’s mental gymnastics are considerable, for he has somehow to  shine in his scientific field (accomplishments none can deny) and yet ignore his guru Sai Baba’s risable absurdities – even in Anand’s own branch of birth sciences. Professor Anand rose become a George W. Bush medical advisor – and yet hails Sai Baba as God fully incarnate, even stating, preposterously and unascertainbly, that Sai Baba has one hundred million followers. Like his guru, Anand exposes himself. For this and other palpable nonsense that Dr Anand falls for, see my article Sai Baba Is God Says Top George Bush Doctor, HERE

In the Anderson story, it is a child who sees the actual nakedness as opposed to the ostensible clothing. Perhaps devotees could do worse than ask for the reactions of a few kids to Sai Baba. As long as forces jesuitical have not trapped them.

The Emperor’s New Clothes
Hans Christian Anderson. Denmark
Many years ago there lived an emperor who loved beautiful new clothes so much that he spent all his money on being finely dressed. His only interest was in going to the theater or in riding about in his carriage where he could show off his new clothes. He had a different costume for every hour of the day. Indeed, where it was said of other kings that they were at court, it could only be said of him that he was in his dressing room!

One day two swindlers came to the emperor’s city. They said that they were weavers, claiming that they knew how to make the finest cloth imaginable. Not only were the colors and the patterns extraordinarily beautiful, but in addition, this material had the amazing property that it was to be invisible to anyone who was incompetent or stupid.

“It would be wonderful to have clothes made from that cloth,” thought the emperor. “Then I would know which of my men are unfit for their positions, and I’d also be able to tell clever people from stupid ones.” So he immediately gave the two swindlers a great sum of money to weave their cloth for him.

They set up their looms and pretended to go to work, although there was nothing at all on the looms. They asked for the finest silk and the purest gold, all of which they hid away, continuing to work on the empty looms, often late into the night.

“I would really like to know how they are coming with the cloth!” thought the emperor, but he was a bit uneasy when he recalled that anyone who was unfit for his position or stupid would not be able to see the material. Of course, he himself had nothing to fear, but still he decided to send someone else to see how the work was progressing.

“I’ll send my honest old minister to the weavers,” thought the emperor. He’s the best one to see how the material is coming. He is very sensible, and no one is more worthy of his position than he.

So the good old minister went into the hall where the two swindlers sat working at their empty looms. “Goodness!” thought the old minister, opening his eyes wide. “I cannot see a thing!” But he did not say so.

The two swindlers invited him to step closer, asking him if it wasn’t a beautiful design and if the colors weren’t magnificent. They pointed to the empty loom, and the poor old minister opened his eyes wider and wider. He still could see nothing, for nothing was there. “Gracious” he thought. “Is it possible that I am stupid? I have never thought so. Am I unfit for my position? No one must know this. No, it will never do for me to say that I was unable to see the material.”

“You aren’t saying anything!” said one of the weavers.

“Oh, it is magnificent! The very best!” said the old minister, peering through his glasses. “This pattern and these colors! Yes, I’ll tell the emperor that I am very satisfied with it!”

“That makes us happy!” said the two weavers, and they called the colors and the unusual pattern by name. The old minister listened closely so that he would be able say the same things when he reported back to the emperor, and that is exactly what he did.

The swindlers now asked for more money, more silk, and more gold, all of which they hid away. Then they continued to weave away as before on the empty looms.

The emperor sent other officials as well to observe the weavers’ progress. They too were startled when they saw nothing, and they too reported back to him how wonderful the material was, advising him to have it made into clothes that he could wear in a grand procession. The entire city was alive in praise of the cloth. “Magnifique! Nysseligt! Excellent!” they said, in all languages. The emperor awarded the swindlers with medals of honor, bestowing on each of them the title Lord Weaver.

The swindlers stayed up the entire night before the procession was to take place, burning more than sixteen candles. Everyone could see that they were in a great rush to finish the emperor’s new clothes. They pretended to take the material from the looms. They cut in the air with large scissors. They sewed with needles but without any thread. Finally they announced, “Behold! The clothes are finished!”

The emperor came to them with his most distinguished cavaliers. The two swindlers raised their arms as though they were holding something and said, “Just look at these trousers! Here is the jacket! This is the cloak!” and so forth. “They are as light as spider webs! You might think that you didn’t have a thing on, but that is the good thing about them.”

“Yes,” said the cavaliers, but they couldn’t see a thing, for nothing was there.

“Would his imperial majesty, if it please his grace, kindly remove his clothes.” said the swindlers. “Then we will fit you with the new ones, here in front of the large mirror.”

The emperor took off all his clothes, and the swindlers pretended to dress him, piece by piece, with the new ones that were to be fitted. They took hold of his waist and pretended to tie something about him. It was the train. Then the emperor turned and looked into the mirror.

“Goodness, they suit you well! What a wonderful fit!” they all said. “What a pattern! What colors! Such luxurious clothes!”

“The canopy to be carried above your majesty awaits outside,” said the grandmaster of ceremonies.

“Yes, I am ready!” said the emperor. “Don’t they fit well?” He turned once again toward the mirror, because it had to appear as though he were admiring himself in all his glory.

The chamberlains who were to carry the train held their hands just above the floor as if they were picking up the train. As they walked they pretended to hold the train high, for they could not let anyone notice that they could see nothing.

The emperor walked beneath the beautiful canopy in the procession, and all the people in the street and in their windows said, “Goodness, the emperor’s new clothes are incomparable! What a beautiful train on his jacket. What a perfect fit!” No one wanted it to be noticed that he could see nothing, for then it would be said that he was unfit for his position or that he was stupid. None of the emperor’s clothes had ever before received such praise.

“But he doesn’t have anything on!” said a small child.

“Good Lord, let us hear the voice of an innocent child!” said the father, and whispered to another what the child had said.

“A small child said that he doesn’t have anything on!”

Finally everyone was saying, “He doesn’t have anything on!”

The emperor shuddered, for he knew that they were right, but he thought, “The procession must go on!” He carried himself even more proudly, and the chamberlains walked along behind carrying the train that wasn’t there.
————————————————————–Source: Hans Christian Andersen, Keiserens nye klæder (1837). Andersen’s source was a Spanish story recorded by Don Juan Manuel (1282-1348).

Translated by D. L. Ashliman.

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Posted in Medicine, Morality, Neglected/sidelined News, New Age, Opinion, Pediatrics, People, Philosophy, Propaganda, Protest, Psychiatry, Psychology, Psychotherapy, Rationalism, Religion, Sai Baba, Scandal, Sex, Skeptics, Spirituality, Successful People, Theosophy, Uncategorized, World Religions | 3 Comments »

Sai Baba Saved Devotees From 9/11 Says Dr Michael Goldstein

Posted by Barry Pittard on April 29, 2007

Dr Michael Goldstein, a physician from Covina, Southern California, U.S.A., is world head of the Sathya Sai Organization. Those whom a leader appoints at the top of his organization reflect his own quality – or lack of it. Please read Robert Priddy’s article which sums up most of Goldstein’s deceptions and bad behaviour.

Here is a Dr Michael Goldstein’s communication sent to many Sai Baba devotees around the world. (In the world Sai hierarchy, Goldstein at the time was second to Indulal Shah). He refers to the events of September 11, 2001:

“A number of reports have been received from devotees indicating that our Beloved Swami prevented many of his devotees from being injured or killed in the World Trade Center where they are employed or had meetings scheduled. His Miraculous Intervention on behalf of His devotees is clearly evident… They were either late or never arrived…”

In a public meeting in Buenos Aires, attended by some 1500 devotees, October 20, 2001, Michael Goldstein says:

“There are many devotees that worked in the World Trade Center and the Pentagon… And none of them went to work that day, or they arrived late…all the New York and Washington devotees are safe…”

Fortunate for the Sai devotees but unfortunate indeed for the thousands of non-devotees of Sai Baba (Hindus, Moslems, Jews, Buddhists, Christians, and those of other faiths and none) who were killed or maimed in those terrible calamities! Terrible too for those who grieve them. But – never mind, Goldstein’s ‘God’ saves his own. No-one is so favoured as the Elect!

Goldstein’s on BBC camera (hidden) Dr. Goldstein as Mr. Hyde asked about the sex abuses. CLICK ON IMAGE TO SEE SHORT VIDEO CLIP 

These astounding sentiments emerged from the same Dr Michael Goldstein who:

– In August 1, 2000, returned unopened a registered letter, which had also been copied to other foremost leaders of the U.S. Sai Organization. The nature and purpose of this letter he well knew, since various devotees had expressed to him and other of his most senior leaders their deep concerns. It was signed by 75 well-esteemed Sai Baba devotees/former devotees from the state of Oregon, U.S.A. outlining allegations of sexual molestation by Sai Baba. See link here.

– At a hotel in Fayetteville, Arkansas, grossly disregarded the feelings and submissions of longtime devotee parents, Al (then one of the highest ranking leaders in the Sai Organization, highly singled out, along with his family by Sai Baba)and Marisa Rahm, from, Arkansas, who were entirely satisfied their son was telling the truth, and have since gone to enormous efforts to raise the issue with U.S. civil authorities such as the State Department,  and also to major world media.

(Note: This avoidance of the issues and extreme secrecy in the service of their “secret swami” – as the BBC has termed Sai Baba – has been the pattern of Sai Organization leaders around the world – who refuse accountability and, all the more shocking for an organization that preaches compassion, duty-of-care. The cover-up is profound).

– Like Dr John Hislop, Goldstein’s predecessor as head of the U.S. Sathya Sai Baba cult, and others, took Sai Baba at his word when the latter proclaimed himself (according to Goldstein’s email to a great many Sai devotees) to be “purity itself.”

– Told renowned South American writer Alejandro Agostinelli, a presenter and producer for Argentine’s Azul TV, that he would grant an interview only if Agostinelli would, on air, retract the tenor of the previous instalments of the Zona de Investigación documentary investigating the allegations against Sai Baba. In short, the only point of view worthy of note is the official Sathya Sai Organization line.

– Was so evasive, along with ashram officials and other leaders of the Sathya Sai Organization, that the BBC producers got from their top administration and Legal department of the BBC a very sparingly used sanction to film using a hidden camera.

– In the BBC’s The Secret Swami (2004) became so rude and angry that many viewers reported disgust that Dr Goldstein could head an organization that claims to be spiritual. (Indeed, it claims to be divine, and the instrument of the founder who claims to be the greatest incarnation of the divine ever to appear on the planet, and of Sai Baba’s promised revolutionary transformation of the whole world before he dies in 2022).

– Evaded the BBC interviewers perfectly reasonable question about the need for transparency in a public organization.

Revealing Michael Goldstein Quotes from The Secret Swami

“We believe that Sri Sathya Sai Baba is Jesus Christ.  Sri Sathya Sai Baba is Buddha.  Sri Sathya Sai Baba is the founder of all of the world’s religions.  Sri Sathya Sai Baba has always been God”.

“All of these years I’ve seen him interact with his students very, very frequently, in very informal circumstances over many, many years.  And because I am a physician I also understand human behaviour.  Because of that, if Sai
Baba had done anything of this kind with any one of those boys at any time, ever, I would see something in one of those children’s eyes, I would see something in one of the expressions on their faces that would indicate to me fear, apprehension, depression, something unsavoury,
something inappropriate, something scary, something ominous, I would know it in my heart because I am what I am – a consummate professional.  Can you understand that?”

Further Resources:

Click here for the  BBC exposure on ‘The Secret Swami’ documentary of Dr. Goldstein showcased with brief video clips and transcripts

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Posted in Medicine, Morality, Neglected/sidelined News, New Age, Religion, Scandal, Sex, Skeptics, Spirituality, World Issues, World Religions | 6 Comments »

Indian Government Study of Child Abuse Is Groundbreaking

Posted by Barry Pittard on April 24, 2007

Recent blogs at: https://barrypittard.wordpress.com have drawn attention to the (for India) groundbreaking study of child abuse (which this link downloads in .pdf format) recently released by the Government of India via its Department of Women and Child Development. See:

Indian Study On Child Abuse. Robert Priddy Comments’,

Child Abuse Rife In India. But Who Would Speak Out?

Child Abuse. Landmark Indian Government Study. Abuse of Indian children ‘common’’

Child Abuse in India. Will Minister Renuka Chowdhury Act?

Having spent a number of years in India engaged in social work among the very poor, I do not know why the important Indian Organization PRAYAS (often simply Prayas) is not mentioned in the paragraphs below, because they were a major role-player in the study. For their opening page on the study, which has many and very valuable links, see here. PRAYAS works within charter and spirit of the UN Convention on the Rights Of the Child, 1989.

The International Save The Children Alliance states:

“For the first time, data on child abuse and neglect in India. A new report by the Ministry of Women and Child Development in India, (supported by Save the Children and UNICEF) released today, reveals the extent and magnitude of child abuse and neglect in India. This is one of the world’s largest empirical, in-country studies covering nearly 12,500 children and 4800 young adults in 13 States.

The Study looks at three different forms of child abuse – physical abuse, sexual abuse and emotional abuse and girl child neglect in families, schools, work places, on the street and institutions. The Study complements the UN Secretary General’s Study on Violence against Children, 2006.

The Study aims to develop a comprehensive understanding of child abuse, which will help formulate appropriate policies and programmes meant to effectively end child abuse in India.

Major findings of the Study:

– Boys, as compared to girls, are equally at risk of abuse.
– Persons in trust and authority are major abusers.
– 5-12 year old children are in the high risk category: across the forms of abuse, the percentage of abuse among them is the highest.
– 70% of the children have not reported abuse to anyone.
– Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar and Delhi almost consistently report high rates of abuse in all forms as compared to other States.
– 2 out of every 3 children have been physically abused.
– Two out of every three school going children are victims of corporal punishment. Half of these incidents are in government run schools.
– More than half of the child respondents reported facing one or more forms of sexual abuse.
– Every second child reported facing emotional abuse.
In more than 80% of the cases parents were the abusers”.

Let Us Not Unduly Target India 

Note:  Some commentors may find it all too easy to point a finger at India. No country must be let off the ‘hook’. In an shortly upcoming blog, we shall look at the incredible remissness of the Australian Government of John Howard, which grossly fails to support key initiatives by some of Australia’s most notable workers in childcare, including by a woman often regarded as a national treasure, Professor Freda Briggs, who is Foundation Dean of the De Lissa Institute of Early Childhood and Family Studies, and Professor of Childhood Development at the University of South Australia. In 2005, in the Queen’s Birthday Honors, she was awarded the Order of Australia (AO). She was named ‘Australian of the Year, 2007’. See Advocates For Survivors of Child Abuse (ASCA), here. The economic rationalists, however, bestow awards as an easy ‘out’, instead of addressing the real issues.
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Posted in Medicine, Morality, Neglected/sidelined News, New Age, News, News and Politics, Opinion, Pediatrics, Philanthropy, Protest, Psychiatry, Psychology, Psychotherapy, Rationalism, Religion, Scandal, Sex, Skeptics, Social and Politics, Society, Spirituality, Trends, World Issues, World Religions | 3 Comments »

The ‘Secret Swami’s’ Hidden Costs

Posted by Barry Pittard on April 20, 2007

In his Christmas 2000 discourse, Sai Baba loudly banged his table in the vast Puttaparthi auditorium, and boastfully pitted the extent of his good works against those of others:

“Have any of them been able to accomplish at least one-thousandth of what Sai Baba is doing? No, no, no!”

He declared,

“No other individual, or no government for that matter, has been able to provide free education or free medical care”

that he has provided.  

In fact, it is his devoted volunteers who perform practically all the services for which he claims credit. Besides, many who have sought these alleged free services report numerous hidden costs in his colleges and hospitals, and many devotees have made considerable donations to the Central Trust in advance of applying.

Even though facing the utmost elusiveness by top Sai Baba officials, media and other investigators can question a range of ordinary consumers of these facilities. It is worth noting that not all parents of students attending Sai Baba’s huge educational institutions, or their teachers, are devotees. Nor are all patients and medical, nursing and ancilliary staff in his vast medical medical centres. Investigators will need to use their skills in getting credible witnesses talking. One would look for those teachers, doctors nurses, etc., who may be ready to speak up to bona fide investigators under conditions of anonymity. Courageous whistleblowers are always somewhere to be found too. Investigators should also document, both on camera and in hard copy, the fear that many have in telling what they know of the dark side of the Sai Baba enterprise.

Further Resources:

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Police Killings Related to Sai Baba Sex Abuse Says Dr Bhatia

Posted by Barry Pittard on April 17, 2007

Mick Brown, British journalist and author of several books, extensively researched some of the scandals that continue to erupt for Sathya Sai Baba and his exceptionally powerful and wealthy worldwide organization. Members of the Sai Baba cult – including a great many otherwise educated members from an astonishing array of professions – believe that they are his workers in bringing about the greatest spiritual revolution in mankind’s history.

In a long article researched on both sides of the Atlantic, ‘The Divine Downfall’, Mick Brown of The Telegraph (U.K.), November 12, 2000, wrote:

“For all the allegations laid against him over the years, Sai Baba has never been charged with any crime, sexual or otherwise. And his exalted position in India has until now kept him safely insulated from any kind of public inquiry.

In June 1993 he was the subject of an apparent assassination attempt when five young men broke into his private residence. Two of his personal attendants were stabbed to death and four of the assailants were shot dead by police ‘in self-defence’. Sai Baba allegedly escaped by rushing out of his room and activating an alarm system. In a subsequent discourse, he said the attack was caused by ‘jealousy’. Dr Bhatia told me he believed the attack was linked to Baba’s sexual activities. The guru was never interrogated by police over the attack. The Indian press raised the obvious question: if Sai Baba is omniscient, why couldn’t he see it coming?”

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Posted in Medicine, Morality, Neglected/sidelined News, Nepal, New Age, News, News and Politics, Opinion, People, Politics, Propaganda, Protest, Psychiatry, Psychology, Psychotherapy, Rationalism, Religion, Scandal, Sex, Skeptics, Social and Politics, Society, Spirituality, Sri Lanka, Successful People, Theology, Theosophy, Trends, Uncategorized, World Issues, World Religions | 1 Comment »

Dr Naresh Bhatia. Silenced Now In Indian Child Abuse Scourge

Posted by Barry Pittard on April 16, 2007

For many years, Dr Naresh Bhatia was a prominent doctor (and head of the Blood Bank) in Sai Baba’s vast but from many reports badly under-utilized Super Speciality hospital at Puttaparthi. There are accounts of his having to flee for his own safety from Puttaparthi and then finally being able to retrieve his possessions only after his undertaking with Sai Baba’s top officials to make no further public statements. A secret swami’s secret India, where at last a landmark study of abuse and the extreme hiding of it has just been released by the Manmohan Singh government. See Resources, at the foot of this article.

dr-naresh-bhatia.jpg

The Guru Can Do No Wrong


Dr Bhatia says that he, when younger, was for a long time a homosexual lover of Sai Baba. (The former Swedish film star Conny Larsson, now a drug rehabilitator among prisoners and others, says the same of himself). Dr Bhatia has told me that he still cannot shake off his belief that Sai Baba is Divine even though he knows that Sai Baba has sexually abused very many of his male students and other young males.
One may note that the guru tradition in India cannot be readily understood by outsiders. One concept is that one does not criticize one’s guru, no matter what he or she says or does. Rooted in almost timeless history, the grip of the guru and other religious authorities is endemic in India.

On November 12, 2000, in an extensively researched article, author and journalist Mick Brown wrote:

“Contacted by phone, Bhatia said that he had become a devotee of Sai Baba in 1971, at the age of 20, and that he had sexual relations with Sai Baba for “15 or 16 years”. In that time, he said, he was also aware that Sai Baba had relations with “many, many” students from the college and school, and with devotees from overseas.”

When making The Secret Swami the BBC television producer Eamon Hardy also spoke with Dr Bhatia, this time in New Delhi but the segment was not included in the documentary, for which 80 plus hours of footage had been shot, containing many compelling testimonies from various countries that, taken together, depict Sai Baba as a serial sexual molester on a most terrible scale.


Many Indian Gurus Abuse But Followers Shut Up About it

Among my papers, I have a note by a former national leader of the Sathya Sai Organization (who still has not gone public). He had a huge outreach among both Indian and Western devotees. He wrote the note while still a devotee but already going through angst following the upheavals following fusillades of revelations around 2000 in the organization which he and his wife so much loved:

“Talking to some Indian devotees (who by the way are not affected at all hardly any of them have left) they tell us that it is common knowledge that “Gurus” generally have some of those tendencies”

Anecdotally, this scenario would surely suggest the origins of the vast shockwaves right now going through India, following the release by the Manmohan Singh government of a landmark study of child abuse in that country. Where sexual abuse is concerned, Sai Baba the ‘secret Swami’ (as BBC television has called him) is close kindred to countless other Indian secret gurus who but reflect countless millions of ‘secret’ citizens of India. Like those of us in other countries who shut up for the sake of the ‘quiet life’, they are – even when not directly committing child abuse – to an extreme degree, therefore permitting it. For decades, Sai Baba has said India is about to lead the world in spirituality, under his banner. But his own ‘backyard’ (which he has said he will clean up before visiting the world) is in a dire shambles. So is he, as we can see when we examine photos and film footage that emphatically display his decrepitude. He is also increasingly given to unquestionably inane utterances and other odd behaviour. Click here for my articles  Sai Baba’s Tip To Keep Ageing Away and Sai Baba – A Degenerative Disease?

Dr Naresh Bhatia – Some Clarifications

Dr Bhatia told me that he felt the threat to his life was very real and that he was concerned that no further harm should come to a young boy who he (and a medical colleague in Bangalore) professionally believed was injuriously sodomized by Sai Baba. For this reason, he says, he has modified his earlier public stance that can be read in David and Faye Bailey’s The Findings (April 2000). Though one child is extremely precious, there can be a great danger to protecting a single individual. Shutting up rather than strong combattive action can threaten the safety and well-being of a great many children.

There Have Been Threats to Life or Limb

I asked Dr Bhatia whether he thought his near fatal accident where a truck hit him was likely to be the work of those on the nasty side of Sai Baba’s outreach. He replied that he felt that the distance and speed from which the truck came before hitting him did not seem focused enough to have been an assassination attempt. I also asked him to clarify a point that has raised some confusion.

The Abuse Patient Was A Level Seven (Primary School) Boy

It had been repeated – either originating, or worse confounded, in the Bailey’s seminal article that a boy was seven years old when very badly sexually abused by Sathya Sai Baba. Dr Bhatia responded that the boy was not seven but was then in Level 7 at Sai Baba’s school at Puttaparthi. He has also confirmed this to my fellow Australian, Stephen Carthew, long known for his courage and truthfulness not least when trying to reform the Sathya Sai Organisation from within, who visited Dr Bhatia in New Delhi 2000. Stephen, who had made kept this visit to India very secret, wrote to me that:

“I found Dr Bhatia delightful and most welcoming, notwithstanding the bind he is in. His own ambivalence regarding the spiritual nature of his Guru and the pressures coming from many sources to keep quiet make it difficult for him to do more than tell his story when asked. Certainly, he believed he was threatened and harassed during his rushed departure from Puttaparthi, after criticizing Sai Baba to his face.”

Abuse Is Too Cruel At Any Age

I should add that, in essence, abuse of a person is still grievous no matter what the age of a victim. However, amongst Sai Baba apologist documents is the incessant habit of siezing on every mistake or inconsistency or inadvertency in the writings of critics of Sai Baba. Any attempt to point out the actual facts results in, for example, further adversarial displays of nitpicking and obsession with peripherals. There are also cases when responding so as to put the record right would entail releasing information that is sensitive and should be secure. However, to genuine and bona fide investigators, such as leading media and those doing studies with well-accredited tertiary institutions, patently sincere enquirers such as those processing the anguish of leaving Sai Baba, and so on, this constraint is often not present.

Note on the Baileys

The Findings reports the Baileys’ discoveries that Sai Baba is guilty of male sexual molestation, huge financial fraud, faked miracles and other criminal and vastly hypocritical deceptions. David Bailey is a well-known British musician who lectured in Music at Sai Baba’s university in Puttaparthi. Travelling around the world as Sai Baba would direct, he was his highest profile roving ‘ambassador’ among devotees. Sai Baba arranged his marriage with Faye, who had previously been a key worker in the Australian Sathya Sai Organization. Unlike so many of the other leaders who know the truth of the accusations, David and Faye were possessed with a conscience. When they spoke out, they had to endure untold scurrility. It went throughout many countries in the Sathya Sai Organization that David languished in jail on charges of paedophilia. Similar outrages occurred when Conny Larrson, former head of the Swedish organization, spoke out. Those of us who were in touch with them on their private telephones were struck by the fact that they were decidedly free – except from the dastardly slanders of many Sai devotees around the world. As has been the case with a number of those of us formerly connected with Sai Baba’s work, Sai Baba’s male students and others who have come under his sway, David and Faye Bailey have been the repository of many accounts of sexual abuse (not to mention other shocking revelations) by Sai Baba. Against almost unimaginable slander and distortion by his defenders, former devotees in various countries continue the attempt to expose these abuses to the world.

Resources:

Child Abuse. Landmark Indian Government Study
Abuse of Indian children ‘common’
By Geeta Pandey
BBC News, Delhi

The Findings
By David and Faye Bailey (an historic but in various ways a very dated document)

Child Abuse in India. Will Minister Renuka Chowdhury Act?
By Barry Pittard.  Email:  bpittard (at) optusnet.com.au

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Child Abuse in India. Will Minister Renuka Chowdhury Act?

Posted by Barry Pittard on April 11, 2007

renuka-chaudhuri.jpg(Renuka, in blue sari, and close business friend)

In the last hours, the BBC and other news services have reported on a major study of child abuse in India. See:
https://barrypittard.wordpress.com/2007/04/11/child-abuse-landmark-indian-government-study/

The BBC report says, 

“Two out of every three children in India are physically abused, according to a landmark Indian government study”

The Manmohan Singh government of India Minister responsible for the release of the report is Renuka Choudhury (also spelt Chowdhury). Before she became Minister for Women and Child Development, Ms Choudhury was Minister for Tourism who worked hard at driving tourism to Sai Baba and Puttaparthi, where he has his main ashram. She  comes from Andhra Pradesh, the same state of India as Sai Baba. Among many other serious accusations, Sai Baba faces worldwide allegations of sexual abuse of boys and young men, implication in police killings in his bedroom on June 6, 1993, and, along with his ashram officials and the Congress Party government of the time (the present Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s Party), is accused of a massive cover-up of the scandal.

One of our Indian workers reports dealing closely with Ms Choudhury and briefing her in detail about compelling evidence against Sai Baba. He said that she went to real effort to personally photocopy vital documents our group shared with her and, still further, to go around to the then Opposition leader Mrs Sonia Gandhi’s residence to brief her on them. The rest was silence – which, of course, is the very essence of deep compromise and cover-up.

In her Tourism portfolio, Renuka Chaudhury, in all practical effect, drove large numbers of boys and young males to Sai Baba. This was even though she was in possession of extremely revealing documents (too sensitive to reveal on the Internet) that, among other terrible matters, evidenced years of large-scale, serial sexual molestation by Sai Baba.

How, then, after all, can Mrs Chaudhuri act to rid India of a sexual abuse scourge that implicates such powerful figures as Sathya Sai Baba?  Manmohan Singh and so many members of his political party – and indeed the President of India, Dr Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam – are deeply implicated with Sai Baba. 

Sai Baba is arguably the most powerful and influential guru in India’s history. How could Renuka Chaudhury and her Ministry of Women and Child Development possibly prevail against one who is so incredibly powerful, and one who the BBC has named ‘The Secret Swami’?

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Sai Baba Promised to Transform India. But Child Abuse Rampant

Posted by Barry Pittard on April 11, 2007

Children vulnerable to abuse during travel, weddings
Apr 10, 2007 – 3:49:12 PM

The survey is expected to develop a dependable and comprehensive understanding of the phenomenon of child abuse.

[RxPG] New Delhi, April 10 – Almost 50 percent of India’s children aged between 5 and 12 are prone to sexual abuse such as forcible kissing and being made to exhibit their private parts during travel, marriage and other family ceremonies, says the national study on child abuse.The figure reduces to half as soon as they cross into their teens, points out a study conducted by ministry of women and child development, UNICEF and two NGOs,Save the Child and Prayas.The survey among 15,000 children in 13 sample states has come up with disturbing data.While 41.17 percent of children in the 5-12 age group complained of being forcibly kissed, the figure came down to 25.73 percent for the 13-14 years category. Similarly, around 25.86 percent of teenagers reported being forced to exhibit their private parts, but the relevant figure for those below 12 was 35.86 percent.

Around 37.25 percent of the younger age group and 27.61 percent of teenagers were sexually abused during travel. As much as 41.33 percent in the 5-12 category and 25.29 in the 13-14 category reported abuse during marriages and other ceremonies in the family.

According to the study, 53.22 percent of the children surveyed faced one or more forms of sexual abuse while 21.9 percent of them faced severe forms of sexual abuse and 50.76 percent other forms of sexual abuse.

What is worse, the report said, ‘around 70 percent of abused children have never reported the matter to anyone’.

While Assam – topped the list of states where children faced sexual abuse, Andhra Pradesh and Delhi followed closely at 72.83 percent and 72.26 percent. Rajasthan reported the lowest complaints with only 29.36 percent.

The percentage of sexually abused young adults – is also high in Assam at 77.5 percent, followed by Delhi at 69.11 percent. Goa reported the least complaints – 23.01 percent.

‘Every second child reported facing emotional abuse,’ says the report. While 68.26 percent of children in Assam reported being emotionally abused through humiliation, the figure was 58.32 percent for Delhi and 55.67 percent for Madhya Pradesh.

The survey is expected to develop a dependable and comprehensive understanding of the phenomenon of child abuse.

‘It will also facilitate the formulation of appropriate policy and programmes meant to effectively curb and control the menace,’ Women and Child Development Minister Renuka Choudhury said.

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