Call For Media and Government Investigation

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

Posts Tagged ‘Abuse’

Robert Priddy On Jaani Drucker, As Sathya Sai Baba Cultist In Denial

Posted by Barry Pittard on May 12, 2010

Robert Priddy has just blogged the article:  Jaani Drucker – wild claims not supported by her actions , Posted by robertpriddy on May 11, 2010. He refers to my series quoting and commenting on correspondence between Jaani Drucker and myself:    

Exchanges of views on how rape and sexual abuse affect the real person or whether they merely affect the body, as is held by rape victim Jaani Drucker.
Reply To Claimer of Enlightenment (Yaani Drucker Correspondance) Part 2
Jaani Drucker continually responds to neither to the spirit or the letter of her claim that ” happy to discuss and debate issues” rather flatly rejecting all points on the ground that she knows the ultimate truth.
Reply To Claimer of Enlightenment (Jaani Drucker Correspondance) Part 3
Jaani Drucker evades Pittard’s contention that those who have had such traumatic experiences need to reach out to an experienced, qualified profession, and that, in terms of public health outcomes, it is a dangerous undertaking to recommend a course of action which relies on faith or notions of enlightenment alone.
Pittard reminds that Jaani Drucker is very evasive on questions she promised to debate openly – instead promoting a self-enhancing narrative about spiritual realization.
Reply To Claimer of Spiritual Enlightenment (Yaani Drucker Correspondence) Part 5
Her many failures of reasoning, and her slips, slides and evasions, evident to commonsense and logic, abound here, and are dealt with
Who can distinguish between those like Jaani who claim realization? How can one get around to testing the plethora of claims? However, there is a body of clinical experience which DOES have testability in application to trauma, and this is being applied day in and day out in hospitals and clinics throughout the world.
Analyzing the belief put forth by Jaani Drucker which Pittard holds is dangerous to vulnerable survivors of rape etc. as supporting a flight into denial. Parents and mental health professionals would never agree with Drucker’s claims.
 
Robert Priddy’s words (below) apply just as well to many who defend not only Sathya Sai Baba but other charismatic figures who have been soundly exposed for egregious, and sometimes criminal, misconduct, and for blatant discrepancy between their teachings and practice. Mind you, Jaani Drucker is in one respect different to most other cultists; for she states that she is fully enlightened. Alas for her, she unconsciously and sharply undermines any such notion by her styles of interaction. Her walls of denial are thick, and her skin is thin. Robert Priddy says:

“That is what she cannot abide, being questioned radically, so she avoids answering the really sensitive points, complaining instead. These reactions show her to be disturbed by any criticism;  no doubt she wants to carry on but escape the consequences of her support for Sathya Sai Baba in all things, and simply brush aside critical comments as not founded in her supposed ‘Truth’”.

A number of those who read and wrote to me about the correspondence (some from professional areas including Psychology) remarked on a recurrent quality of narcissism in her responses, and a veering away from questions that in any way challenged her beliefs. Also oft remarked was her tendency to wrench out-of-context what had been clearly stated. Again, these tendencies are very marked in cultic reactions to even the most courteous of critical questioning.

It is of great concern (and former devotees well-known to the Drucker’s give compelling first-hand testimony) that the Druckers have turned their backs on families and individuals who give harrowing accounts of sexual and other abuses by Sathya Sai Baba. 

Robert Priddy writes:

“Al Drucker admitted – when pressed – to the former Central Coordinator of the UK Sathya Sai Organization, that many parents had complained to him of sexual abuse by Sai Baba while Drucker was resident at the ashram. Jaani is no doubt also well aware that Sai Baba has escaped justice only because the entire Indian system of corrupt topmost politicians and judges who worship him have protected him from all accountability! This is part of the body of lies the Druckers prefer to condone, supposedly to protect their Truth, which would need not protection or even promotion if it really were that immutable and powerful”.

I have written of Drucker’s dereliction of duty of care elsewhere:

Will the Real Professor Alvin Drucker Be Upstanding?

I have written of his wife Jaani Drucker’s attempt to have me remove what I had written:

Reply To Yaani (“Have Truth, Will Travel”) Drucker’s Request To Remove Blog Articles

Robert Priddy writes further: 

“frank and open truthfulness from the Druckers on the sexual abuse issue would be welcome… but they evidently discriminate against those “brothers” who are no longer in the so-called ‘Sai family’. Not least it would help assuage the feelings of the offended persons whom they know to be speaking the truth about their awful experiences. It would also be fair to many of us who we have all reason based on massive, impelling testimony to accept they were so treated by Sai Baba… and not least also for his own sexual satisfaction!”

 Further Reading

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

Swedish psychologist Åsa Samsioe challenges Jaani Drucker’s self-perception, and gives a view of self-deception as self-deception

Strawberry Fields Forever? plus comments on Jaani & advaitic doctrine

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

Jaani Drucker: ‘the Ego’ misunderstood and self-nihilation

 In denying flat out that the ego and entire world are real, Jaani Drucker implies that she herself is unreal, while in fact she is real but totally unrealistic… following Sai Baba, she wants everyone to annihilate their egos and minds!

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

Pittard points out how the Druckers still extol Sathya Sai Baba, yet they know crucial facts about many of his alleged sexual abuses.

Jaani Drucker, The Truth, open inquiry and truthfulness

Examination of some of Jaani Drucker’s claims about herself, Sathya Sai Baba

Advaita – historical flight into abstraction and speculation

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The Public Petition   

Information on the Public Petition for Official Investigations of Sathya Sai Baba and His Worldwide Organization

About the Petition For Official Investigation Into Sathya Sai Baba Cult

(Note: You may prefer to proceed straight to the Petition): Public Petition For Official Investigations of Sathya Sai Baba and His Worldwide Organization   

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

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

Posted by Barry Pittard on February 24, 2010

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

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

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

In one of her emails to me, she says:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Will the Real Professor Alvin Drucker Be Upstanding?

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

Strawberry Fields Forever? plus comments on Jaani & advaitic doctrine

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

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

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

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

To Be Continued Soon ….. 

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Further Reading

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

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

Will the Real Professor Alvin Drucker Be Upstanding?

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Petition

Public Petition For Official Investigations of Sathya Sai Baba and His Worldwide Organization

There is a Spanish version available:

PETICIÓN PÚBLICA PARA ”INVESTIGACIONES OFICIALES DE SATHYA SAI BABA Y SU ORGANIZACIÓN A NIVEL MUNDIAL

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

Subscribe in a reader

Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

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

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

Posted by Barry Pittard on February 22, 2010

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

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

In another email to me, she says:

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

She put the question to me:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

To be continued ….

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Barry Pittard responds to earlier email of Jaani Drucker:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Letter from Stephen Carthew

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

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

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Select Further Reading

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

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

Will the Real Professor Alvin Drucker Be Upstanding?

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

Strawberry Fields Forever? plus comments on Jaani & advaitic doctrine

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Petition

Public Petition For Official Investigations of Sathya Sai Baba and His Worldwide Organization

There is a Spanish version available:

PETICIÓN PÚBLICA PARA ”INVESTIGACIONES OFICIALES DE SATHYA SAI BABA Y SU ORGANIZACIÓN A NIVEL MUNDIAL

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

Subscribe in a reader

Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

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

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

Posted by Barry Pittard on February 20, 2010

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

——————————————

From: jaani drucker

Dear Barry,

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

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

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

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

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

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To Be Continued soon ……

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Select Further Reading

Will the Real Professor Alvin Drucker Be Upstanding?

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Petition

Public Petition For Official Investigations of Sathya Sai Baba and His Worldwide Organization

There is a Spanish version available:

PETICIÓN PÚBLICA PARA ”INVESTIGACIONES OFICIALES DE SATHYA SAI BABA Y SU ORGANIZACIÓN A NIVEL MUNDIAL

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

Subscribe in a reader

Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

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

On Leaving A Powerful Global Cult. Sathya Sai Baba Example (Part 3)

Posted by Barry Pittard on January 28, 2010

This post continues On Leaving the Sathya Sai Baba Cult – Ex Leaders and Rank-and-File and On Leaving A Powerful Global Cult. Sathya Sai Baba Example (Part 2)

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…  I spoke by phone and corresponded with a number of former devotee sexual abuse professionals who knew of various cases at first hand. These included Shirley Pike and the late Elena Hartgering. They and other seasoned professional workers were in no doubt of the fact that Sathya Sai Baba had seriously sexually molested young males. 

As I listened to, or read, the written accounts of both primary and secondary witnesses, I was acutely aware that many of those giving the accounts did not even know each other. Once it was known I was investigating Sathya Sai Baba’s matters, I went on to discover compelling accounts from sources well apart from Sathya Sai Baba circles. Having studied Epistemology, Logic and Methodology in my university Philosophy course, I was ever more aware that the required criterion of non-collusion was being repeatedly satisfied. It was abundantly clear that many of the witnesses did not know each other. Nor did they know of other cases of which former devotees like the late Glen Meloy and myself were compiling an ever-expanding data base. See:  Glen Meloy (“Standing up for truth and goodness”) – In Memoriam.

I could not escape the conclusion that Sathya Sai Baba was a serial sexual molester, on an appalling scale, of minors and young men from his educational institutions and from around the world. 

I also felt acutely conscious that I had been, over many years, whether directly or indirectly (though certainly without proselytizing), instrumental in various people becoming devotees. It is a grave load of conscience to bear, and many former devotees bear it. Like so many others who have investigated and become former devotees, my then partner’s and my hearts were heavy indeed. Typical of others who have just become former devotees, she and I cleared our house of Sathya Sai Baba-related artefacts. As former devotees universally have found, dear friends, in some cases of many years standing, who remained devotees, dropped us, even though we had shown no hostility towards them or Sathya Sai Baba. 

Incredibly, devotees forget that those they shun are the same people in whom they have long cherished qualities of truthfulness, loving-kindness, and sacrificial service to others. They stand by and allow the constant libeling and defaming of those old friends and fellow workers and, for example, the cruel naming of children, amid the distortion of facts on the internet (where there is known background association with those prominent in the Sathya Sai Organization) and deliberately used to attack the parents who have stood forth. They have betrayed those who have, at great sacrifice to themselves, stood up for the very qualities of truth they forever go on about in their study groups and elsewhere. 

These members of the international Sathya Sai Organization abrogate responsibility for instituting and maintaining best practice processes of accountability and transparency to be seen in exemplary modern organizations. Yet, in their professions and trades, they gladly benefit from such provisions. Indeed, at large, they avail themselves of the democratic rights guarranteed in the constitutions of the countries in which most of them live.

…………………………………………………….

Some Further Resources

Joseph. Early Sathya Sai Baba Whistleblower

After Leaving A Cult. Or ‘Moving On’

Sathya Sai Baba Cult. Blind Eye To Massive Slander

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

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

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

Formal statement provided to Exbaba.com by Timothy Conway Ph. D. concerning the Hislop letters

The crucial John Hislop letters, Sathya Sai Baba, & Sathya’s defender Joe Moreno – by Timothy Conway, PhD

An article in which Timothy Conway outlines many key issues

New Zealand Lawyer Exposes Official Cover Up of Killings In Sathya Sai Baba Bedroom

(Late) Ron and Peggy Laing: Deeply Alienated From Sathya Sai Organization

Senior Indian Policeman (Rtd) Speaks Out About Sathya Sai Baba Murders Cover Up

V.P.B. Nair. B.Premanand. R.Priddy: Sai Baba Bedroom Killings

…………………………………………………….

Petition

Public Petition For Official Investigations of Sathya Sai Baba and His Worldwide Organization 

There is a Spanish version available:

PETICIÓN PÚBLICA PARA ”INVESTIGACIONES OFICIALES DE SATHYA SAI BABA Y SU ORGANIZACIÓN A NIVEL MUNDIAL

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

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Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

Posted in Morality, New Age, Opinion, Religion, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

Brian D.Steel Updates References To Kevin R.D.Shepherd Writings

Posted by Barry Pittard on August 25, 2009

Brian D.Steel, who has written in-depth on matters of Sathya Sai Baba-related bibliography, has just sent a note. I think that these references below can be read as a resource in company with my blog of yesterday: Kevin R.D. Shepherd Exposes Sathya Sai Baba Defender Gerald Moreno

Brian Steel writes:

I have just amended 2 articles to include references to 3 more of Kevin R.D. Shepherd’s contributions, the latest from his splendid new website:  http://www.kevinrdshepherd.info

1. Evidence of an Internet Activist in Action: Gerald ‘Joe’ Moreno:

http://bdsteel.tripod.com/More/joe_morenos_mo.htm

Kevin R. D. Shepherd:
‘Sathya Sai and Wikipedia’, www.citizeninitiative.com/sathya_sai_and_wikipedia.htm
‘Kevin R. D. Shepherd in response to Gerald Joe Moreno’, www.citizeninitiative.com/sathya_sai_and_wikipedia.htm#response
(Added on 25 August 2009)
‘Wikipedia, Moreno, Google (2008)’, www.kevinrdshepherd.net/html/22__wikipedia___moreno__google.html
‘Pro-Sai Activist Gerald Joe Moreno’, www.citizeninitiative.com/sathya_sai_and_wikipedia.htm#activist
‘Internet Terrorist Gerald Joe Moreno (2009)’, http://www.kevinrdshepherd.info/internet_terrorist_gerald_joe_moreno.html

2 Diversionary Tactics by an Internet Demagogue: http://bdsteel.tripod.com/More/internetpropaganda_jm.htm

Kevin R. D. Shepherd:
“Sathya Sai and Wikipedia”
‘Kevin R.D. Shepherd in response to Gerald Joe Moreno’
(Added on 25 August 2009)
‘Wikipedia, Moreno, Google (2008)’, www.kevinrdshepherd.net/html/22__wikipedia___moreno__google.html
‘Pro-Sai Activist Gerald Joe Moreno’, www.citizeninitiative.com/sathya_sai_and_wikipedia.htm#activist
‘Internet Terrorist Gerald Joe Moreno (2009)’, http://www.kevinrdshepherd.info/internet_terrorist_gerald_joe_moreno.html

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

The Decline and Fall of the Showman Empire

Posted by Barry Pittard on July 10, 2007

Note: Because of marked upsurges of enquiry and interest in our exposure of Sathya Sai Baba and his cult, I shall briefly post to the Home Page (from 10 September 2007) ‘The Decline and Fall of the Showman Empire’. This article gives background and perspective to our earlier as well as our subsequent work.  A few days ago, I did similarly with an article 4 April 2007 , which I have now reverted to its former chronological position: The BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami’ – A Revision

Despite a great deal of sacrifice of time and health, former devotees have persisted. Against them, there have been remorseless and unconscienable libels, attacks on families (including our children who have been maliciously named on the internet to get at their parents, interference in professions and community lives, and almost daily distortion and vituperation on the internet by a known associate of those closely connected with Sathya Sai Baba and his international Sathya Sai Organization.

The fact that we will not stop has led to profound fallings-away from Sathya Sai and his cult.

Barry Pittard

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Sathya Sai Baba’s ‘showman empire’ is worth many highly unaccountable billions. Frequently, they pour to his Sathya Sai Central Trust from your country and mine. (See Rediff.com reference in my note, Sai Baba Exchequer Worth Billions. Many Countries Donate).

saibabachariot6.jpg

Given India’s endemic corruption that extends to the highest echelons, it is not to be wondered at that successive governments in that otherwise great country have ensured that nothing is allowed to stanch the flow of bounty from foreign countries into India.

Media Empires Are More Effective

rupert-murdoch-mogul-of-media-moguls.jpgturner-799961.jpgsubhash-chandra-chairman-zee.jpgdr-richard-parsons-of-head-of-time-warner.jpg

R to L. Media mogul’s mogul Rupert Murdoch, Ted Turner, a slight competitor! (film star Jane Fonda’s Ex), Zee TV’s Subhash Chandra, Time Warner’s Dr Richard Parsons

But now, Sai Baba has been increasingly exposed to the world on television by the BBC, DR (Denmark), AZUL (Argentina), CBC (Canada), ABC,  SBS (Australia), and in the press – India Today, Times of London, Telegraph, Guardian, Age, Australian Financial Times, and newspapers in several parts of Europe, Canada, and elsewhere. This does not mean that any of these major institutions did a thorough job, for there abound many compelling accounts of various kinds of abuse by both Sathya Sai Baba and his servitors, some of them tragic indeed.

We are now better able to see the Decline and Fall of the Showman Empire. But the core leaders of the ‘Secret swami’ (as the BBC has named Sai Baba) are immensely powerful, and will not go down without a fierce fight. Theirs is a secret world, and this secrecy is one of the first roadblocks encountered by scholars and other investigators who have attempted to study Sai Baba and his organization. It is one of the distinguishing marks that go to defining a cult.

No Edward Gibbon To Chronicle Sai Baba’s Decline and Fall – Yet

Some exceptions to a a long-muzzled Indian media occurred November 2006, when Paul Lewis’s story broke in The GuardianThe Indian living god, the paedophilia claims and the Duke of Edinburgh awards. It raised concerns about the nexus between the Duke of Edinburgh Awards and the UK Sai youth, on their way in large numbers to see Sai Baba. Those, such as myself, who have had to deal with media issues, pay tribute to the work of IANS (Indo Asian News Service) who did some adroit work about getting this story into India.

In London, a not very experienced or competent UK CEO, Peter Westgarth – see HERE – was slow off the mark. However, after very high level representations from our side, the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme trustees and Prince Philip’s Private Secretary, Brigadier Sir Miles Hunt-Davies KCVO, CBE,

sir-miles-hunt-davis.jpg

realized that a serious matter was at hand. Questions were also raised by some powerful citizens, including a former Home Minister, Tom Sackville. The Duke of Edinburgh Awards required of Dr G. Venkataraman, at an official Sai Baba website to take down the triumphant – but absurdly mistaken – information that the Duke of Edinburgh Award had been awarded to Sai Baba himself.

G. Venkataraman, formerly a member of India’s highly secret nuclear establishment, is Sai Baba’s deputy world head, who also directs Sai Baba’s international 7 days 24 hours satellite radio service via the WorldSpace international corporation. According to the Wikipedia entry for ‘Sathya Sai Baba’, its Director Dr Michael Nobel is “one of the patrons for the radio network” and “said that the radio network would spread Sathya Sai Baba’s message of global harmony and peace”. (With little sense of time’s passage, the Sai devotees who wrote the Wiki article say, absurdly, that Michael Nobel is the son of Alfred Nobel, who founded The Nobel Foundation and after whom the Nobel Prize is named)

An Imperial Puttaparthi Wishes To Penetrate Every Corner of Globe

Dr Venkataraman states:

“Sometime in September 2001, two distinguished visitors came to Sri Sathya Sai Super Speciality Hospital in Bangalore. They were Dr. Noah Samara, CEO, WorldSpace Corporation, and Dr. Michael Nobel, Chairman, Nobel Family Society, and a Member of the Board of Directors of WorldSpace. Dr. Nobel is the great grand nephew of Dr. Alfred Nobel, the founder of Nobel Prize … Who can deny the play of the “hidden hand”? Dr. Samara and Dr. Nobel were duly blessed with a Divine Interview, in the course of which Dr. Samara offered at the Lotus Feet an entire digital radio channel for broadcasting Swami’s Message of Love and Compassion to the entire world”.

Duke Versus Emperor. Edinburgh Beats  Puttaparthi

On November 4, 2006, The Guardian ran Paul Lewis’s story (see above). In a development that occurred quite without (a story perhaps to be told one day) The Guardian seeking it, in November 2006, The Indo-Asian News Service (IANS) managed to get a few major Indian media to take the feed on the Paul Lewis story. There have been decades of censorship of material adverse to the politically and religiously too-hot-to-handle Sai Baba and his vast and, in India, extraordinarily powerful Sathya Sai Organization. This feed also went to parts of Asia and the Middle East. It has been an absurd situation that NRI’s (Non Resident Indians) have been accessed in the media of many countries with large Indian diaspora to critical information about Sai Baba, when Indians in their own country have been denied.

Investigative Opportunities

The present writer (email:  bpittard(at)optusnet.com) can provide journalists and other investigators with a slew of media and academic contacts who can verify that the Sathya Sai Organization is a prime example of a cult in hiding from the media and others wishing to examine it. This is why the BBC obtained a difficult to gain sanction from its senior managment and Legals to use a hidden camera on the world chairman of Sai Baba’s orgnanization, Dr Michael Goldstein of Covina, California. (See BBC video footage HERE)

Without hazard to life and limb, astute, seasoned, well-briefed journalists should be able to slip unnoticed into Sai Baba ashrams and centers and other meeting places, and those of other cults. One financial journalist was about to investigate the vast money trails but got reassigned. Another, an award winning journalist from an Australian newspaper was, after weeks of intense investigation, about to front page when, at the last moment, his Editor-In-Chief spiked the story. A Can-West journalist had to modify his piece after heads of his newspaper got ensconced for hours with lawyers of a multi-millionaire advertizer with the same newspaper. However, many media have stood up to pressures from the Sathya Sai Organization senior brass.

Any temptation to obtain a good laugh from silly beliefs or practices should at all costs be avoided. It is no laughing matter that, for example, young people can get themselves horribly enmeshed in cult life, just as we can lose them via drugs and alcohol. Trustfully, by better awareness among broadcasters’ of their journalists getting too close to their stories, (BBC) John Sweeny-like confrontations will be avoided. See my article, Of Anger. BBC’s John Sweeney and the Scientologists.

The Emperor Without Clothes

At this link, in the article When ‘Divine’ Magnetism Becomes A Dead Weight, I provide but one example of the sort of craziness Sai Baba’s many supposedly educated devotees respond to in the manner of the subjects in the Hans Christian Anderson story The Emperor’s New Clothes. The George W. Bush medical advisor Professor Kanwaljeet ‘Sunny’ Anand, the birth scientist, stands as one of many examples around Sai Baba of those who desert their normal intelligence and range into the empirically absurd. There is a naked discrepancy which they, including Sai Baba’s more intellectual followers, see-but-don’t-see. Robert Priddy comments aptly on Sai Baba’s unscientific statements about magnetism and the nature of the atom HERE

Cult Awareness and Non-Cooperation Will Demolish Sai Baba’s Empire

According to the great British historian, Edward Gibbon (1737-1794):

“The union of the Roman empire was dissolved; its genius was humbled in the dust; and armies of unknown barbarians, issuing from the frozen regions of the North, had established their victorious reign over the fairest provinces of Europe and Africa.” Chapter 33, Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire

But it will not be armies of barbarians who humble the showman emperor’s empire into dust. There has been much exposure of his implication in police killings in Sai Baba’s bedroom on June 6, 1993. There has been the testimony relating to his rampant, serial sexual molestation of boys and young men. Thanks to some of the worlds most respected media, voices of credible witnesses from many parts of the world have been – at last!- heard. Scholarly former devotees, distinguished for their learning when they were devotees (and indeed in their own professions) have extensively exposed whole trails of contradiction and anomaly and bad science and history to be found in Sai Baba’s own – officially recorded – words and deeds. Read his discourses – simply that – and the contradictions, the absurdly non-scientific and blundering historical statements (now excised where possible by his editors, but archived by Robert Priddy and Brian Steel, see below) will demolish him.

He says he will rule the earth, but he cannot even rule the Duke of Edinburgh. Nor, breaking his widely publicized promises, can he transform India. Nor has he been able to honor many years of promises that he is about to travel to other parts of the world – see, Will World Accept Sai Baba. He says yes. Very Soon

Further Resources

Useful are the websites of retired (or refreshed!) academics, Robert Priddy (Norway), HERE, and Brian Steel (Australia) HERE. See also Wikipedia reference under: ‘Robert Priddy’ HERE and his blogsite at: http://Robertpriddy.wordpress.com
There are also the general former devotee website at http://www.exbaba.com, with English, Dutch, Italian sections. Those at Allegations concerning Sathya Sai Baba are in English, Spanish, Russian, Dutch, Italian, German, Danish, Polish and Norwegian……

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 Morality, Neglected/sidelined News, New Age, Protest, Religion, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 15 Comments »