Call For Media and Government Investigation

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

Archive for the ‘Nepal’ Category

‘Marriage Mart’ – Are Known Sex Abusees Disadvantaged?

Posted by Barry Pittard on June 30, 2007

Witnesses Speaking Out On Sex abuse. Opportunities? Obstacles?

Getting those of Sai Baba’s ex college boys and staff, with whom we have had contact over time, to speak out publicly has proven difficult.

Indeed, in our own movement of exposure, except around 2000, encouraging Sai Baba’s abuse survivors, no matter what their country or culture, has been hard. At  this time, there was unusually intense effort to bring allegations against Sai Baba and his organization to world attention. There were also high hopes – terribly idealistic, in retrospect – that simply getting the major media to investigate, and informing governments, law enforcement agencies, the general public and as many remaining devotees as possible would effect transformation.

Caution In the Primary Witness Process Essential

Of key significance in obtaining cooperation of those making primary allegations circa 2000 was that one of the former devotees was an Indian, with many contacts within Sai Baba circles in India – but added to this fact were his own distinctive qualities. For he was an enormously energetic campaigner, matched outside India by another extraordinary activist, now deceased, who was non-Indian.

The issue of charismatic ability of some activists to inspire abuse survivors to come forth – has been been re-raised by recent developments. These will not be made public yet – but of which more, trustfully, in the next year or so. However, with the utmost emphasis, I wish to suggest a caution. As in the example given above, a highly energetic, articulate, personable individual may indeed have unusual success in obtaining cooperation with abused individuals – e.g., getting sworn testimony, undertakings to travel as court witnesses, sharing of abuse experiences with leading media, law enforcement agencies, governments, UNESCO, academic researchers, etc.

However, my view is that, under a regimen of caution and great sensitivity, it is essential to have well-qualified, experienced abuse professionals involved – as well as those with other professional skills, such as lawyers, social workers, financial advisors, etc. With such constraints, there will, I should think, be some falling away in the numbers ready to testify. When all is said and done, those who are inwardly crumbling may not make the best witnesses, anyway. However, the issue is an ethical one, and should not be up for grabs! Although activists may have the very best intentions, and be far from exercising any coercion, there are nonetheless serious dangers to be avoided. Badly traumatized human beings can be like ticking bombs, where the approach must be made with a great care and skill not possessed by most of us.

Is There A ‘Damaged Goods’ Problem Within India Marriage ‘Markets’?

Indian boys with sexual molestation accounts have shared with networked former Sai Baba devotees a number of difficulties facing them. These relate to the conduct of Sai Baba and some of his personnel such as certain of his teaching staff and students. Suppose Indian abuse survivors were to go public. Are we able to imagine the ramifications within that extraordinarily complex institution – the joint family?

Ex-students and staff of Sai Baba’s institutions who are cooperating with us are acutely aware, for example, that members of their own families are strong devotees of Sai Baba. Some of these live in his ashrams, and are vitally dependent on his largesse, and anxious lest his officials find any fault, real or imagined, which could lead to their casting out. If ex-students and other young male devotees who have come to grief with Sai Baba, or are friends of those who have, were to speak out, what would be their fate, and that of those they love?

Joint Family A Great Institution. Like Any, It Has Its Stresses, Strains 

A great many marriages in India are still arranged, where a boy or girl does not, in certain respects, so much marry an individual but rather a complex set of family alliances.

To spend considerable time – as I have had the great fortune to have done in the case of India – in any other culture is often a humbling experience. Customs which vastly differ from one’s own can, on closer inspection, enshrine a great deal of commonsense, adaptive capacity and profundity – all too easily missed by superficial judgement. Therefore, it is not the topic in general of arranged marriages that I allude to in this piece, but a facet of the tradition which can pose – unless those in the culture itself  find creative ways around it – a difficulty for many Indian sexual abuse survivors.

Creative Indian Solutions Needed

All round the world, there are those who wish, of course, that ex students and ex staff of Sai Baba’s institutions would go public with what they know to be true, tragic as it is. (I do not say that they will not do so, eventually). However, such an event needs a uniquely Indo-centric approach – with Indian legal, spiritual, emotional and other support systems well in place. Where well-wishers in other countries may be able to assist is in contact with governments to smoothe the path for those Indian individuals or families who, for their own safety and well-being may wish to relocate.

Many who have been abused have real issues of reintegration, of  “moving on” (which is a phrase they themselves often use), and living with a sense of betrayal – especially acute in the face of their experience of a guru they supremely loved and trusted.

Legal Situation Can Be Problem-fraught

Any abuse survivors looking for legal remedies need to ensure that they obtain the most competent and sensitive advocacy. To win a monetary settlement and yet lose peace of mind is not worth it – unless an individual is very strong and believes that his sufferings will obtain tangible reforms for other abuse survivors, including the eduction of the wider public, and the breaking down of taboos against speaking out.

Related Reading at: https://barrypittard.wordpress.com

Indian Government Study of Child Abuse Is Groundbreaking

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

Child Abuse in India. Will Minister Renuka Chowdhury Act?

Child Abuse. Landmark Indian Government Study

Subscribe in NewsGator Online

Subscribe in Bloglines

Add to My AOL

Add to Excite MIX

Add Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba to Newsburst from CNET News.com

Subscribe in NewsAlloy

Add to netvibes

Add to The Free Dictionary

Add to netomat Hub

Add to flurry

Receive IM, Email or Mobile alerts when new content is published on this site.

Add to Webwag

Add to Attensa

Subscribe in Rojo

Subscribe in a reader

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

Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

↑ Grab this Headline Animator

Advertisements

Posted in Morality, Neglected/sidelined News, Nepal, New Age, News and Politics, Opinion, Philosophy, Protest, Psychiatry, Psychology, Psychotherapy, Rationalism, Religion, Sai Baba, Scandal, Sex, Skeptics, Social and Politics, Society, Spirituality, Sri Lanka, Theology, Theosophy, Uncategorized, World Issues, World Religions | Leave a Comment »

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?”

Subscribe in NewsGator Online

Subscribe in Bloglines

Add to My AOL

Add to Excite MIX

Add Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba to Newsburst from CNET News.com

Subscribe in NewsAlloy

Add to netvibes

Add to The Free Dictionary

Add to netomat Hub

Add to flurry

Receive IM, Email or Mobile alerts when new content is published on this site.

Add to Webwag

Add to Attensa

Subscribe in Rojo

Subscribe in a reader

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

Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

↑ Grab this Headline Animator

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 »

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’?

Subscribe in NewsGator Online

Subscribe in Bloglines

Add to My AOL

Add to Excite MIX

Add Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba to Newsburst from CNET News.com

Subscribe in NewsAlloy

Add to netvibes

Add to The Free Dictionary

Add to netomat Hub

Add to flurry

Receive IM, Email or Mobile alerts when new content is published on this site.

Add to Webwag

Add to Attensa

Subscribe in Rojo

Subscribe in a reader

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

Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

↑ Grab this Headline Animator

Posted in Medicine, Morality, Neglected/sidelined News, Nepal, New Age, News, News and Politics, Opinion, Pediatrics, People, Philanthropy, Philosophy, 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 | 2 Comments »

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.

Subscribe in NewsGator Online

Subscribe in Bloglines

Add to My AOL

Add to Excite MIX

Add Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba to Newsburst from CNET News.com

Subscribe in NewsAlloy

Add to netvibes

Add to The Free Dictionary

Add to netomat Hub

Add to flurry

Receive IM, Email or Mobile alerts when new content is published on this site.

Add to Webwag

Add to Attensa

Subscribe in Rojo

Subscribe in a reader

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

Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

↑ Grab this Headline Animator

Posted in Medicine, Morality, Neglected/sidelined News, Nepal, New Age, News, News and Politics, Opinion, Pediatrics, People, Philanthropy, Philosophy, Politics, Propaganda, Prophecy, 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 »

British Labour and Tory Whips Suppressed Motion On Sai Baba

Posted by Barry Pittard on April 9, 2007

British House of Commons: “Sai Baba and sexual abuse of children” Early Day Motion No. 886 November 2000

In November 2000, a petition signed by over fifty cross party Members of Parliament, was made by Hon. Tony Colman, (then) MP for Putney (Labour):

“That this House, mindful of the many accounts and witness statements of the sexual abuse of the male children of devotees by the Indian guru, Sai Baba, calls upon the Foreign Secretary to use the Travel Advice for India page of the Foreign Office Website to issue guidance to British families intending to visit the Ashram of Sai Baba about the possible danger to their male children of individual audiences with the guru.”

For information about how this Motion was suppressed (primary sources of which can be revealed to responsible media, academic investigators, etc), see my article: ‘Flag Follows Trade. Abetting Indian Government Corruption’ 

Subscribe in NewsGator Online

Subscribe in Bloglines

Add to My AOL

Add to Excite MIX

Add Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba to Newsburst from CNET News.com

Subscribe in NewsAlloy

Add to netvibes

Add to The Free Dictionary

Add to netomat Hub

Add to flurry

Receive IM, Email or Mobile alerts when new content is published on this site.

Add to Webwag

Add to Attensa

Subscribe in Rojo

Subscribe in a reader

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

Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

↑ Grab this Headline Animator

Posted in Morality, Neglected/sidelined News, Nepal, New Age, News, News and Politics, Opinion, People, Philanthropy, 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 | 3 Comments »

Sai Baba Head Michael Goldstein’s Extreme Statement on 9/11

Posted by Barry Pittard on April 9, 2007

During the making of the television documentary The Secret Swami, the BBC confirmed but did not use (amid 80+ hours of its investigative film footage, a significant amount shot in the USA) the document in which Sai Baba’s U.S. head – who is now world Chairman of the Sathya Sai Organization, Dr Michael Goldstein of Corvina, southern California – in an email to devotees, made the following statements about 9/11: 

“A number of reports have been received from (Sai Baba) 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 Sai Baba devotees, October 20, 2001, Goldstein also said:

“There are many (Sai Baba) 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…”

Too bad for the thousands of non-devotees of Sai Baba who were killed or maimed in those catastrophes, and all who were left behind to grieve – Hindus, Moslems, Buddhists, Jews, Christians, and those of other faiths and of none)!

Further Reading:

The English translation from Spanish of “Gatapado” journal article by a top Argentinean investigative journalist and Azul TV presenter Alejandro Agostinelli is at:  

http://www.saiguru.net/english/media/020201divine_sin.htm

Subscribe in NewsGator Online

Subscribe in Bloglines

Add to My AOL

Add to Excite MIX

Add Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba to Newsburst from CNET News.com

Subscribe in NewsAlloy

Add to netvibes

Add to The Free Dictionary

Add to netomat Hub

Add to flurry

Receive IM, Email or Mobile alerts when new content is published on this site.

Add to Webwag

Add to Attensa

Subscribe in Rojo

Subscribe in a reader

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

Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

↑ Grab this Headline Animator

Posted in Medicine, Morality, Neglected/sidelined News, Nepal, New Age, News, News and Politics, Opinion, Pediatrics, People, Philanthropy, 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 | Leave a Comment »

Sai Baba. IHEU Presentation to United Nations

Posted by Barry Pittard on April 9, 2007

International Humanist and Ethical Union Presentation to United Nations

Extract from statement by Mr Roy BROWN, Tuesday 6th April 2004,
Commission on Human Rights: 60th session. Chair: Mike Smith (15 March – 23 April 2004), Item 13. Rights of the Child. Abuse of Children in the name of Religion.
Source: http://www.iheu.org/node/1305

…”We are equally appalled that even though widely reported allegations of paedophilia against the highly successful and powerful Indian god man Satya Sai Baba have led UNESCO to withdraw in 2000 from a proposed joint event with the Institute for Satya Sai Education (see UNESCO Media advisory below), despite the matter being raised in the UK Parliament (early day motion by MP Tony Coleman), and despite the issuing by the US State Department of a Travel advisory in 2001 (see US State Department Travel Advisory below), the disturbing allegations have not received the appropriate attention of the Government of India which is a signatory to the Convention on the Rights of the Child. We are hopeful that international attention, scrutiny and pressure will lead to a full scale investigation into the activities of this so-called god man and ensure the protection of children who come into contact with him.”

 

Subscribe in NewsGator Online

Subscribe in Bloglines

Add to My AOL

Add to Excite MIX

Add Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba to Newsburst from CNET News.com

Subscribe in NewsAlloy

Add to netvibes

Add to The Free Dictionary

Add to netomat Hub

Add to flurry

Receive IM, Email or Mobile alerts when new content is published on this site.

Add to Webwag

Add to Attensa

Subscribe in Rojo

Subscribe in a reader

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

Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

↑ Grab this Headline Animator

google975d5c09f17675a6.html

_uacct = “UA-2339476-1”;
urchinTracker();

Posted in Morality, Neglected/sidelined News, Nepal, New Age, News, News and Politics, Opinion, People, Philosophy, 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 »

Vivekananda Has Come Again, Says Sai Baba. But Has He?

Posted by Barry Pittard on April 6, 2007

“Vivekananda has come again;  he is growing up in Ceylon (Sri Lanka).  He will come to Me and join in My task.”    Sathyam, Shivam, Sundaram, Part II, p. 130. 1960-61. Professor N. Kasturi, official biographer of Sri Sathya Sai Baba.

On Wednesday April 13,1998, I flew from South India to Sri Lanka. Among other matters, I  wished to locate the young man, Nalin Sedera. According to major Sai Baba-approved writers N.Kasturi and Howard Murphet, Sai Baba had told Sedera he was

swami-vivekananda-in-chicago-1893.jpgramakrishna-and-vivekananda.jpg

Swami Vivekananda in his last life.

I had encountered personally (and India is the place of all places to encounter them!) similar stories, sometimes in relation to Sai Baba but also cases where, muchto their surprise, individuals from various countries had found their names cited in one or more of the palm leaf traditions in India, supposedly written or dictated by ancient Indian rishis (seer, sages, spiritual masters) called Nadis.

In common with devotees from many countries, I had heard various reliable reports that Sai Baba had informed certain individuals of who they were in some past life. For example, disclosing their identity when (as he claims) he ‘came’ as God manifest in Rama, Krishna, and Shirdi Sai Baba (circa 1838-1918).

Many devotees relate that Sai Baba has said that Paramahansa Yogananda(1893-1952), another earlier Indian swami who went to the West and became famous worldwide, was now a child growing up in a Greek family of Sai Baba devotees. I wondered what would be the case if Nalin were to undergo one of these readings (nadis, naadis, granthas, granthams) scattered about India in which I had taken an interest – e.g., Brighu (in North India), Agasthya (Agasthiar),Suka,Sukha, Siva, etc., (South India).

What was this mention of a “task” in the Professor Kasturi quotation?  Sai Baba has many times stated that he will bring, before he dies (not that he uses the word ‘dies’) the entire world into an era of truth, right conduct, peace, love and non-violence, before leaving the planet, aged 95 or 96?  (The one year differential depends on which calendar one uses, Gregorian or Indian).

Many years ago, Sathya Sai Baba said that Ramakrishna, Vivekananda’s illustrious guru, had but one Vivekananda and one Brahmananda, whereas he, Sai Baba had hundreds of great yogic souls among his devotees through whom he will perform global transformations on a scale never witnessed in mankind’s history. Could it, I (then) thought, be possible to locate some of these great souls; and might they, sensing the seriousness of my nadi study, grant permission to submit a thumbprint or any other initial information required by nadi custodians by which to gradually reticulate to an individual’s given reading? If I located Nalin, would he in any way resemble Swami Vivekananda? Would any reading for him in any of the nadis confirm what Sai Baba had foretold?

As I waited in the queue awaiting to see Sai Baba at Kodai Kanal, a gorgeous hill station in the Nilgiris of the state of Tamil Nadu where Sai Baba has a villa, two gentlemen asked me about my work – at that time, editing a Sai Baba related magazine, Spiritual Impressions, and books by some devotees of Sathya Sai Baba.  I noticed a man intently listening in, and welcomed him into the conversation.  He soon said he was from Sri Lanka.  More than that, he and his family personally knew Nalin. After the darshan (viewing of a person deemed holy), he gave me contact details.

In that morning’s darshan of Sai Baba, I found myself against considerable odds in a second row.  Sai Baba came right up. I handed him a small card on which I had written the name: Nalin. He moved the card little by little several times gently along the palm of my hand towards Him. This was in a similar manner to which he had stroked my hand in the darshan of morning before. Then, as though to create an emphasis, Sai Baba snapped the card deftly towards his chest.  He then put the card among the letters in his left hand, and moved a few paces towards the centre of the pathway, turning to the rows of men sitting opposite. Unexpectedly, he turned right round and, looking towards me with what I took to be great love, made a deep bowing movement with his head. Keeping the steady heart-melting gaze all the while, he smiled very sweetly, then raised His hand in blessing me for quite some moments. From my then devotee perspective, not without various extraordinary experiences I had had, thinking him to have omniscience, I felt very strongly that he was bowing to, and blessing, the intention that had formed in my mind: to seek out Nalin.

On Sunday April 19th, 1998, I had planned for a quiet evening in my room at the Ramakrishna Mission in Columbo, the capital of Sri Lanka.  I had arranged with Nalin’s brother, Ajitha, to go to their home on the Monday.  He told me that Nalin had been spending a few days meditating in a temple at the southern tip of his country – at Karthirkamagiri, long a place of pilgrimage for Buddhists and Hindus alike. Until a month before, I had never heard of it. However, it was mentioned in a Chapter (Kandam) in one of my Agasthya nadis at Vaithishwarankoil in Tamil Nadu (where it stated that I was associated with this place in a former life as a doctor).

At 6.15 p.m., as I made my way up Ramakrishna Road for a quiet cup of Horlicks, a tall, slender, striking young Singhalese man around thirty years called across to me, “Are you the Australian gentleman staying at the Ramakrishna Mission?”  It was Nalin accompanied by his brother, Ajitha.  He explained that they thought they would find me more easily than I them.  A few minutes later, as we sat ourselves down at the table of the crowded vegetarian restaurant, I sat facing a tall, lithe, well built young man, clean shaven, dressed very neatly, wearing denim, his dark red shirt smart. He blended in with middle class Sri Lankans. His face had a fine-boned, sculptured look, and a bright, golden brown that had an inner lustre. His voice was rich and resonant, as though coming from a cavern. Was there anything about his physical appearance which resembled Vivekananda? Yes, I thought  –  the lips:  delicate, fine-etched, contoured. I  sensed strong character, and he he displayed spontaneous, sincere good manners.  He was direct, with a controlled but passionate intensity about things that mattered to him.  

“They are trying to take my life”

Even before we sat down, I had asked him whether the attention he had received had affected his life.  His distaste for those who mobbed him was immediate, unmistakable. “They are trying to take my life.”  It was an odd sentence. I asked Nalin, “When you say,’They are trying to take my life,’ do you mean that your life is actually in danger from anyone?” With burning intensity, and a mix of smile and leer that reminded me of Humphrey Bogart, he replied, “They would be writing their last will and testament if they tried!”Here, I did not sense a Vivekananda-like commitment to ahimsa (non-violence). Nalin’s occasional intensities became one of my abiding impressions of him.

As we sat down, he referred to crowds that gathered round him after word travelled bushfire-like that Sathya Sai Baba had said that Nalin, in his previous life, was Swami Vivekananda. He said:

 “My mind didn’t go. But I lost a lot  –  my liberty, my freedom.”

I checked with him, just to be sure I understood his exact meaning. By “my life”, he meant a broad leeway to be himself. I asked  Nalin if he related to books? Again, the intensity.

“I want to have experience. It is all that matters. Not read about anyone else’s. Books are a waste of time.”

I mentioned the book by the Australian writer Howard Murphet’s book. Nalin said that he felt very let down by the people who had informed the author of his story (he referred to them as Tamilians  –  i.e., belonging to or originating from the south Indian state of Tamil Nadu).

 “I had asked them to allow nothing to be published without my permission. They went ahead without consulting me”.

As he began to unfold his experiences, he said:

 “I’ve had a lot of troubles. I am a normal person, whatever people may think.  Whatever may have been the case in my last life, I am living in this  life!  I have no idea what happened in my last life.  When Swami made the revelation  –  or call it a pronouncement  –  I had no idea of who Swami Vivekananda was.  This is this life.  It’s all I’m interested in.  Now, as a result of all the attention, I’ve lost what is most precious to me  –  my liberty, my freedom.  At the ashram after Swami had spoken, there were hundreds of people milling all round me. And hundreds of people here in Sri Lanka.” 

What did the mobs ask? 

“They asked funny questions.  Do I remember my previous birth?  They regard me as some kind of alien.  Some of them say I should be wearing a robe like a sadhu (ed., spiritual renunciate).  Why should I do that?  I want to wear my denims.  Some have even said that, at a certain time, I’ll get up in darshan and take over Puttaparthi.”

Typically, after reflection, usually following a question of mine, he would return with a perfectly crystalised reply, like a pearl slipping out of the oyster shell when, after inner effort, it opens at last.  His voice struck flint; a small spark lit his eye. “I don’t like that!”  The tone was very emphatic.  Again the spurt of intensity.  I sensed a deep indignity, a smouldering anguish from which he had somewhat distanced himself. Embers still glowed hot.

He spoke of his anger at the time of Sai Baba’s ‘revelation’ or ‘pronouncement.’  The interview in which this was made occurred, he said, at Puttaparthi, March 23, 1987.  Two more interviews followed – on the 24th and 26th.  He was then nineteen years. He said that the Sri Lankan group of which Nalin was a member was led by Mrs Ganhewa. He was baffled to know how the news got out.  “Swami took me into a private room next to the interview room. I cannot see how others in the interview could have heard what Swami said.  I certainly didn’t say anything about it.”

I have since asked a number of others their opinion as to the audibility or otherwise of what is said, from the standpoint of someone in the outer room.  Some say the speech is too muffled to be understood.  Others say that sometimes one can hear what is being said. In an interview on July 24,1998, I noted this: a curtain separates the two rooms, as it has long done. I was in a group of seven Australians. However, a Canadian husband and wife briefly preceded us into the inner room. Later, Sai Baba also saw the three ladies in our group separately to the men. In both cases, a few drift words of speech could be understood; much could not be, because he and the Canadians and, separately, he and the Australian women spoke quite quietly.

Nalin told me that he returned to Puttaparthi in August 1987.  Sai Baba called him and his group for interview.  He said that Sai Baba asked the group leader, referring to Nalin’s parents, “Are his parents happy?”  Nalin relates that she replied yes, they were very happy when they heard the news, but

“Swami replied, ‘No, no, no, they are not happy but they are worried about that boy. Look at him, he’s just a boy.  Just leave him alone and don’t disturb him, because if anything happens, you must be responsible for that”‘. 

Nalin says 

“Swami turned to me and said, ‘A lot of people are angry with you and jealous of you, here and there.  Don’t go to any bhajan places. You just stay at your home, and do your work'” 

I asked Nalin what work did he do? 

“Not ordinary work. A friend of my age and I have been working among the poorer classes. At one time, we got involved in an eye camp.”

(These were organised clinics designed to bring medical aid to the poor. For example, combating eye diseases such as glaucoma).

Nalin continued,

“Swami then said, ‘You are angry with me.  Why are you angry with me?’  I said, ‘You know why I am angry with you.’  Baba said, ‘Yes, I know.'” 

Nalin relates that it was only on his return home that he discovered from his parents that they had been in fact worried at the extraordinary revelation about their son. Not wanting to trouble their family, they had kept their concern to themselves.

He said that, in two or three months, he would like to visit Sai Baba wherever he was stationed at the time. A lot would depend on how Nalin’s father managed with a shortly upcoming by-pass operation in Chennai. He wondered whether it would be possible to get Sri Lankan Sai devotees to leave him alone – perhaps via a note printed in Sanathana Sarathi, the official magazine of the Sathya Sai Central Trust. Considering the essential purpose of the publication (to publish Sri Sathya Sai Baba’s Discourses, a small few articles by contributors, Sathya Sai Organization news), I rather doubted his chances, but suggested he call on the Editor, Sri V.K. Narasimhan, whom I regarded as a good, decent man and a warm friend. With distinction and courage, V.K.N. had formerly edited major Indian newspapers – the Indian Express, Hindustan Times and Deccan Herald– and he and I had a warm friendship and were in fairly regular contact. From V.K.N. I soon after found that Nalin had, while I was absent, called on him, a visit I had already told V.K.N that Nalin may make. When we later spoke, V.K.N smiled wryly and admitted defeat in observing any similarities to Swami Vivekananda.

Since so many of Sathya Sai Baba’s predictions large and small have proved false, one may fail to see how the one about Nalin could come true. Trustfully, given the fickleness of the madding crowd, Nalin’s botherers will have long given up their bothering of him.

If Nalin ever takes over Puttaparthi, I shall personally ‘come again’. Reborn there as a service volunteer. And eat my hat!

Resources:Manisha Rathore
http://sify.com/astrology/fullstory.php?id=13624255

Robert Priddy, former Norwegian leader and a founder member of the Norwegian Sathya Sai Organization: ‘Requiem To A Kindly Spirit. Celebrated Indian journalist V.K. Narasimhan
http://home.no.net/anir/Sai/enigma/VKN2.htm

Subscribe in NewsGator Online

Subscribe in Bloglines

Add to My AOL

Add to Excite MIX

Add Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba to Newsburst from CNET News.com

Subscribe in NewsAlloy

Add to netvibes

Add to The Free Dictionary

Add to netomat Hub

Add to flurry

Receive IM, Email or Mobile alerts when new content is published on this site.

Add to Webwag

Add to Attensa

Subscribe in Rojo

Subscribe in a reader

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

Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

↑ Grab this Headline Animator

Posted in Morality, Movie Stars, Neglected/sidelined News, Nepal, New Age, News, News and Politics, Opinion, People, Politics, Propaganda, Prophecy, Protest, Psychology, Rationalism, Religion, Scandal, Sex, Skeptics, Social and Politics, Society, Spirituality, Sri Lanka, Successful People, Theology, Theosophy, Trends, Uncategorized, World Issues, World Religions | 2 Comments »