Call For Media and Government Investigation

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

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‘Marie Claire’ Magazine: April 2011. Sathya Sai Baba Still Further Exposed

Posted by Barry Pittard on March 14, 2011

In the article:  ‘Holy Man Or Hoax?’, the world-famous ‘Marie Claire’ magazine has just furthered the exposure of Sathya Sai Baba and his worldwide cult.

Writing for the Australian edition of ‘Marie Claire’ (April 2011), the British journalist Gethin Chamberlin, who resides in India  (See note below), writes:

Sathya Sai Baba, God, guru, magician, is arguably one of the most influential men on earth – and certainly one of the most controversial.  He counts presidents, prime ministers and kings (and celebrities like Goldie Hawn and Sarah Ferguson) among his 50 million followers.  He sits on a multi-billion-dollar fortune, his picture hangs on the walls of hundreds of institutions that bear his name, he claims he can materialise holy healing ash and diamond rings out of thin air, and perform miracle cures. He claims he is omnipotent and omnipresent. He has variously described himself as the second coming of Jesus and the reincarnation of the Hindu gods Shiva and Shakti, and his followers believe he is God in human form.

But behind the pageantry lies a sinister underbelly.

(Note:  there are serious questions to be raised about crowd estimates, and some journalists have trusted figures which, when examined, turn out to be those trumpeted around by the Sathya Sai sect itself. See: Sathya Sai Baba’s Gross Exaggerations of Puttaparthi Crowd Numbers).

Hollywood Legend Goldie Hawn Sprouts Happiness

Scandal-plagued Britsh Royal, and Sai Baba follower, Sarah Ferguson

Major media around the world have exposed various aspects of Sathya Sai Baba, and of his official Sathya Sai Organization, which has grown increasingly authoritarian over the decades. See: Notable Former Devotees Who Have Spoken Out and: Dr. G. Venkataraman, propagandist in the limelight.

Gethin Chamberlain writes:

Since the 70’s, countless men have come forward with accounts of abuse, all familiar:  Sai Baba calls them into a private meeting, places his hands on their genitals, then tells them it is not a sexual act. Sometimes he performs oral sex on them, sometimes they on him. Always the explanation is the same: this is an act of God. Many choose to ignore the allegations, and Sai Baba’s army of powerful supporters help to quash the rumours. Last November, more than a million people attended Sai Baba’s 85th birthday, the prime minister and president of India were among them.

See: Avatar of Deception: Sathya Sai Baba. 85, But Says He Will Rule World and: Sai Baba Breaks Down and Sobs At 85th Birthday Celebration (Video Footage) and: Sathya Sai Baba 85th Birthday No Celebration For Those He Has So Badly Hurt.

Although it states that there are many worldwide allegations of Sai Baba’s sexual abuse of young males, and refers to the UNESCO and US State Department advisories, the ‘Maire Claire’ article does not allude to various other scandals, most notably the massive Puttaparthi and local, state and central government cover up of the police killings in Sathya Sai Baba’s bedroom in on 6 April 1993, which BBC television exposed well in ‘The Secret Swami’, in 2004.  See: Barry Pittard’s Guide To His Articles On The BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami’ (Exposing Sai Baba) and: V.P.B. Nair. B.Premanand. R.Priddy: Sai Baba Bedroom Killings and: Will V.P.B. Nair Keep His Word To BBC On Sathya Sai Baba? and: V.K. Narasimhan on the 1993 Sathya Sai Baba murders and: Sathya Sai Baba and India in-depth study.

Two examples Chamberlain cites give typical examples of the guru-blinded nature of many Sathya Sai Baba cultists (and cultists of many another feather!), and the manner in which they bury their consciences in rationalizations that defy ethics common to many cultures, and indeed contravene the laws of a great many countries.  He writes:

But complaints against Sai Baba have now piled so high even some of his most ardent supporters accept there is truth in them.  In 2004, Isaac Tigrett (ed., the US billionaire and co-founder of the Hard Rock Cafe chain, who also established The House Of Blues) told a BBC reporter that even though he “absolutely believes there is truth to the rumours”,  it doesn’t change his feelings about his guru.  “He could go out and murder someone tomorrow,” admits Tigrett, “and it’s not going to change the good things that have come out of my relationship [with Sai Baba]”.  Devotee Ram Das Awle agrees, but adds that any contact Sai Baba had with young men would have been for their own good:  “It seems very likely any sexual contact Sai Baba has had with devotees, of whatever kind, has actually been only a potent blessing, given to awaken the spiritual power within those souls. Who can call that wrong?”.

Isaac Tigrett, Longtime Financial Backer of Sathya Sai Baba

See: Isaac Tigrett. Selling Out Those Condemned to a House Of Blues and: Isaac Tigrett & a fake ‘crystal skull’ Sai Baba ‘materialized’ and: The fall and fantasies of Sai Baba supporter, Isaac Tigrett

To be sure, there are grave types of crime, and spiritual betrayal on a mammoth international scale, which this article and many others have not, understandably, been able to capture.  Nevertheless, it is to advantage that ‘Marie Claire’ features world standard photojournalism, and the ‘Holy Man Or Hoax?’ article contains quite recent and strikingly revealing photos of just some of the incredible opulence with which Sai Baba surrounds himself.  His madness, authoritarianism and overweening arrogance are damningly evident to a vast array of human beings, but not to those smitten by their unquestioning faith in him.

In responses to the magazine article, both from those in many religions and from those who disdain religion altogether, there cannot help but be a common attitude, here.  They will abhor Sathya Sai Baba’s and his organization’s splurging lavishness. Alike, their eyes will behold the disgraceful exhibitionism, the squandering of wealth in a land of great poverty and inequality, and the vaulting arrogance and profound lack of active ethics and genuine spirituality in Sathya Sai Baba and in those who are enslaved to him.   See: Sathya Sai Baba: opulence, show, extravagance and waste and: Sai Baba, Kubla Khan, Citizen Kane, Bill Gates et alia.

The Sweatshop Streets On Which Opulent 'Shining' India Often Thrives

The more the facts get out to mass audiences the more the world will realize the corruptness of successive Indian governments, irrespective of which regime is in power, which have protected and covered up for Sai Baba – a veritable ‘golden goose’ for many among India’s elites – who has never been brought to face laws that are, nonetheless, enshrined in Indian state and central bodies of Law.

Indian PM Manmohan Singh Worships Sathya Sai Baba


India's President Pratibha Devsingh Patil Bows To Sai Baba

Former Indian PM A.B. Vajpayee, a Sathya Sai devotee

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Further Reading

The Divine Downfall of Sathya Sai Baba (UK Telegraph)

UK Guardian On Sathya Sai Baba and Duke’s Awards

The BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami’ (Sai Baba). Revealing Footage

Sathya Sai Baba’s Un Divine Downfall

Sathya Sai Baba Cult Exposure By Major TV Channel In Australia

Sathya Sai Organization double morals

Dr. G. Venkataraman’s delusions and cynical cover up

Gethin Chamberlain

….. is a photojournalist covering South Asia for The Observer. He also writes for a number of other newspapers and magazines, including The Guardian, Grazia, GQ, Look, News of the World, South China Morning Post and The National. Based in India, he previously worked as a foreign correspondent for The Sunday Telegraph and as The Scotsman’s chief reporter. He can be contacted at: gethin.chamberlain@gmail.com

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General

Excerpt From Public Petition

(Note: You may prefer to proceed straight to the Petition):

Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

Sleight Of Hand. The Sleightness of Sathya Sai Baba (Exposing film clips)

Posted by Barry Pittard on March 10, 2009

Quite often, among our friends or acquaintances, there is someone who has astonished – or appalled! – us with a few magic tricks.

The Ease of Learning and Performing Basic Magic Tricks

Most children and adult libraries have a selection of books on the how-to of a wide range of magic tricks. These show that, without much ingenuity or skill, most people can pick up a few, with a fundament being, of course, sleight-of-hand, not to mention the use of confederates (But can you always trust them?)

For the clear use of a confederate, you can see Doordarshan’s – Indian national radio and television broadcaster –  video footage showing Sathya Sai Baba’s palming of a necklace from beneath a trophy handed to him by his flunky. This film the then Indian Prime Minister P.V. Narasimha Rao, a Sathya Sai Baba devotee, quickly moved to censor:

Censored Indian National Television Film of Sai Baba Cheating

Simple Man-about-town’s Magic Impromptu

A few months ago, I was sitting in a cafe and a local character of little education wandered in. He began entertaining the rest of us with a charming and adept suite of parlour tricks. I chatted with him afterwards. Clearly, he had never heard of Sathya Sai Baba. After my briefly describing Sai Baba’s so-called miraculous manifestation of objects, he immediately sprang into action, and indeed the quickness of the hand deceived the eye – until he slowed things down and also stopped diverting the observer’s attention from e.g., palming and transference of objects. Although he felt honor-bound not to reveal a number of the other tricks that he (the young man) had earlier performed, he showed exactly how Sai Baba produces necklances, pendents and sacred ash, etc.

His displays were akin to those of Nils Krøjgaard, the professional Danish conjuror, who is seen in ‘Seduced’, a television documentary (2002) by Denmark’s national broadcaster DR, which exposes Sai Baba. You can see the 53-minute documentary, for Broadband (80 megabytes) HERE. For Dialup (21 mb) HERE. and the transcript HERE.

Goldie Hawn, the famous Hollywood film star is seen sitting, right hand side of the film clip, near to Sai Baba as he performs his trick.

Famous Indian Skeptics Educate Masses About Fraudsters’ Tricks

Courageous Indian rationalists, such as B. Premanand and Professor Narendra Nayak attempt to educate India-wide audiences in demonstrations – ‘Miracle-exposures’ – of the conjuring techniques by which so-called ‘holy men’ like Sai Baba deceive the masses.

Fortunately these days, one is now able to see slowed-down images of Sai Baba as he produces sacred ash (vibhuthi) or other objects. See my blogs of the last few days of March, 2009, which contain relevant links:

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

Censored Indian National Television Film of Sai Baba Cheating

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

Master Magicians or Illusionists

On the other hand, there are master magicians or illusionists who are disciplined in the sense that, for example, a ballet dancer or virtuoso instrumentalist, becomes a consummate practitioner, requiring hours of daily practice. Some magicians risk their lives in pursuit of their craft. A number of them gain, such as the fabled Harry Houdini (see footage at end of this article), almost superhuman personal psycho-physical control. For a contemporary example, see: David Blaine breaks world record on Oprah Winfrey Show for holding his breath

The magic tricks Sathya Sai Baba employs are a pale shadow of these. But they are comparable to what a adroit enough amateur can learn and perform. Do take care, though, as a kid, I once accidently swallowed a coin while trying to master a trick – ah, will the days of half pennies never return?!.

Behold Their Holinesses – the Company of Great Magicians

Imagine how successfully any of the outstanding magicians I refer to below could have set themselves up as ‘holy’ men in India!  Or imagine how, in a socio-economically developing country like India, where there is still a great deal of mystification especially of non-educated and semi-educated, how easy it is for an arch-deceiver such as Sathya Sai Baba – and a great many frauds without his more greatly famed and curious talents – to mislead the public.

Many Indians Disdain So-Called ‘Godmen’ Who Detract From India Greatness

Many Indians of my acquaintance (and I lived in that great country for several years), whether religious, humanist or atheist feel terribly badly about the superstition and corruption to which the socio-economic condition gives rise.

Below, here are a few master magicians. Some of them are teachers by nature and ready to show how some of the tricks are done. The English magician Derren Brown, like the immortal Houdini, is committed to exposing fraudulence.

Note: a) Alphabetical order of surnames is followed. b) Clicking on the name of the magician/illusionist brings up their website

Note: In a forthcoming article:  Formost female magicians! Including:

Dorothy Dietrich
Angela Funovits
Kate Medvedeva
Tina Lenert
Sue-Anne
(My own country Australia’s magic star, named (2007) in the book ‘Historias de Magas Antiguas y Modernas’ which surveys the greatest female magicians in history). And, rivalling her for her place –

Cath Jamison, also of Australia

But – for now  –

David Blaine

The New York Times wrote, “He’s taken a craft that’s been around for hundreds of years and done something unique and fresh with it”.

Wikipedia article

Videos

David BlaineVideo

David Blaine teaches the simple fan
David Blaine Videos – Many Metacafe clips

………..

Lance Burton

“Burton is a magic purist whose show is a loving homage to his craft”.

Kathleen Foley. Los Angeles Times. December 3, 2001.

Wikipedia article

Videos

Lance Burton Sleight Of Hand Magic

Lance Burton and The Dove

Magic Secrets Revealed: Lance Burton unveils some mysteries of magic. New secrets featured each month

………..

Derren Brown

“… a stage act that stretches back 100 years and a future that might be as lengthy”

January 14, 2009.

YouTube – Derren Brown shows how mediums work

Mind Control with Derren Brown

Several videos, both shorter and longer, are at Britain’s Channel 4 website:

http://www.channel4.com/entertainment/tv/microsites/D/derrenbrown/index.html

………..

David Copperfield

YouTube – David CopperfieldThirteen

Doug Henning (The late)

For the magician:

“The hard must become habit
The habit must become easy
The easy must become
Beautiful”

“I consider Jim the most brilliant mind in magic.” Jim Steinmeyer, whom, in turn, the New York Times described as the “celebrated invisible man—inventor, designer and creative brain behind many of the great stage magicians of the last quarter-century.”

Doug Henning’s The Magic Show review, Vimeo.

Posted in Miracles, Movie Stars, Rationalism, Religion, Scams, Skeptics, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments »

‘Secret Swami’ Cult Recruits At Prime Public Venues

Posted by Barry Pittard on June 23, 2008

Although there is a long history of Sathya Sai Baba’s utterances which forbid promoting of himself, his official worldwide Sathya Sai Organization promotes strongly, at his, of course, the secret Swami’s sub voce behest.

This zeal to recruit (to use the proper word) tends to take place in exceptionally prestigious venues. What does the cult  need for its survival – given over a decade of unrelenting exposure? It needs to provide for the stupendously expensive upkeep and maintenance of its costly and sumptuous buildings and various programs that glorify Sathya Sai Baba as God of Gods.

But the wherewithal is not likely to proceed from his ever-circling ‘miraculous’ hand. Survival decrees that it is the left hand that needs to be in operation, and fast.

And despite his both old and recent (2007) promises – see Will World Accept Sathya Sai Baba? He Says Yes. Very Soon

and Has ‘World Saviour’ Missed His Plane?

– he almost certainly Note stoney, mask-like face. Parkinsons Disease?is going nowhere that would exceed the capacity of his wheelchair and the nervy hands of those continually needing to prop him up – see Sathya Sai Baba’s Tips To Keep Ageing Away

Here are a few of the recruitment centers, bound to be familiar haunts of the wealthy and powerful, whose own beneficent hands, the cult stewards will have to hope and possibly even pray, will, if not quite so miraculously, underwrite the ‘secret swami (pace BBC) – but now, in a way, slightly more public:

Cooper’s Union, New York; Town Hall, Melbourne; Copley International Conference Center, San Diego; Super Dome, Sydney; La Mirada Theatre, Hilton Ballroom (both Los Angeles); Sheraton Hotel & Towers, Chicago; etc. See article by Robert Priddy and Barry Pittard: Sai Organization’s Spending Spree In Super Dome, Sydney.

\'Honest Abe\' Lincoln Spoke Here. The \'Secret Swami\'s\' Turn?

‘Honest Abe’ Lincoln spoke at Cooper Union in New York. Is it ‘The Secret Swami’s’ turn?

Historic Melbourne Town Hall. Another Sathya Sai Org Recruitment Venue

Historic Melbourne Town Hall, Australia (with more plans for other Australian cities) has been used as a Sathya Sai Baba cult recruitment center

Sydney Superdome (subsequently rebranded, by nifty corporate strategy, Acer Arena) – another recruitment venue. See article by Robert Priddy and Barry Pittard: Sai Organization’s Spending Spree In Super Dome, Sydney

Sheraton and Towers. Sathya Sai Org Recruitment

Sheraton and Towers, Chicago. Secret Swami cult recruitment centre

A Sathya Sai Baba Recruitment Dance, Hilton Ballroom, LA

The Hilton Ballroom. A Las Angeles ballroom embraces an ‘Avatar’. No less than  Again, recruitment in swish places, claiming hearts and wallets, not a few movie stars among them. Such as?

Michael Jackson, Love For the Secret Swami

Does convicted megastar Michael Jackson still love ‘the secret swami’?

A Heart For Sathya Sai Baba, Goldie Hawn

Goldie Hawn. Still a golden heart for the gold spinning guru?

Sathya Sai Baba film makers and Nora Jones discuss Sai Baba movie

Dare Songstress Nora Jones Touch Sai Baba?

Note: Sathya Sai Baba interests who are touting for money for a Hollywood film to be made (a story move extolling him and tentatively titled “My Guy”) with famed singer Nora Jones, daughter of celebrated Indian sitarist Ravi Shankar, being named as a likely star of the movie. (BUT – supposing a more powerful movie can be made showing the dark side of Sathya Sai Baba? Of this, let us see a bit later)

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General

Excerpt From Public Petition

(Note: The above articles contextualizes. Or 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 Miracles, Movie Stars, Neglected/sidelined News, Rationalism, Religion, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 15 Comments »

Dare Songstress Nora Jones Touch Sai Baba?

Posted by Barry Pittard on March 20, 2007

steven-seagal-seated-with-sai-baba.jpgimages.jpggoldie_hawn1.jpgmichael-jackson.jpg

Nora Jones

nora-jones.jpg

is one of the world’s most admired singers of popular music. Her father, a high profile Sai Baba devotee, is Ravi Shankar, the Indian sitar maestro.

But what would stardom in a Hollywood movie about Sai Baba do for her image? Might it be that those such as her agents, Bob J. Grabow and all the good folks at Grabow and Associates, and other well-wishers, have implored Nora Jones to steer well clear of any movie that extols Sathya Sai Baba?

These days, notably quiet about their previous connections with Sai Baba are various Hollywood stars. Many  former devotees feel that it is not fair to ‘out’ those celebrities who are believed to have gone to see Sai Baba in a genuine spiritual quest or in the hope that he will miraculously heal their sicknesses.steven-seagal-with-automatic-handgun.jpg

This blogspot will consider this situation but draw a clear line in any case where those individuals support Sai Baba and any part of his worldwide organization.

Media Can Probe Stars on Superstar Guru

One would urge the media to question any celebrity Sai Baba devotee and ask of them why they would lend their name and fame to one so heavily exposed by the BBC, DR and many other major media in various countries (See links below). Just as they extensively and at the cost of great labor assisted these media, Sai Baba’s international former follower network and others have not been inactive in informing Hollywood and other celebrities, their agents and acquaintances about the case against Sai Baba.

Movie stars big and small have consorted with Sai Baba. Pictured at the top of this page, see Steven Seagal, the martial arts superstar, seated on a fine chair next to Sai Baba’s throne before an audience of thousands.

Seagal’s very violent movies are the antithesis of the Shanti (Peace) that Sai Baba everywhere preaches (and which his own Security wing decidedly do not tend to practise). Seagal, like Goldie Hawn, Michael Jackson, and others have became sensibly quiet on Sai Baba.

The Divine Nora, Seen Everywhere But Not With Sai Baba

In 2004, a Rowdy Productions website touting on behalf of a planned movie about Sai Baba had several well laid out pages but the address now only brings up nonsense:   http://www.saibabafilm.com/

There, the producers said:

“We have an interest from Norah Jones’ agent for the lead role and will be pursuing this option”

and:

(We) “feel that the soothing voice of Norah Jones will heal the audience and carry Sai Baba’s message worldwide”.

In a flash we’ll be in 2008. But the movie – named “My Guy” – for which Rowdy Productions has called for seed funding of around ten million dollars, is taking aeons to materialize. With touching faith in the all-providingness of their guru, who has often proclaimed himself to be the fullest incarnation of God to appear on the planet, the producers say:

“as the interest grows we will be in a much more commanding position to negotiate with the best and most sought after actors in Hollywood.”

But how many more millions would be needed to buy that?! Perhaps Sai Baba’s ‘rowdies’ (See the 1970’s book by Howard Levin, one of those longtime devotees whom Sai Baba called his ‘rowdies’) simply expect a Sai Baba miracle to come to their aid. If, as it is common for him to do, he has told them to go ahead and he will fructify their endeavours, they should remember that Sai Baba’s promises are frequently broken and his predictions uneventuated. Any half-informed Sai Baba devotee knows this to be true, however they may contort all reason and commonsense to explain it.

Rowdy Productions, perhaps true to their name, may simply be making a lot of noise. Indeed, noise is the very nature of Sai Baba’s supposedly blissful ashram in Puttaparthi, Andhra Pradesh, South India, named Prashanthi Nilayam (‘Abode of Peace’). Their plan all sounds rather – well, off the planet. Does an upstart company expect the world’s top actors to do freebies? Or will they offer a cut in any proceeds of success? It all seems too tinselly – even for Tinseltown.

You may wish to read and sign:

‘Public Petition for investigation of Sathya Sai Baba and his worldwide organisation’ See Below.

Further Reading

The BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami’ – A Revision

BBC Hidden Camera in ‘Secret Swami’. Ethical?

Guru Sex Abuse Testimony To BBC – After Years of Silence

Indian Minister Shields Sai Baba on BBC television

Probed On Male Sex Abuse, Sai Baba Evicts BBC TV Team

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

Exposure of Sathya Sai Baba. Media Source List

Video Resources

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

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

BBC Footage Exposes Fake Sathya Sai Baba Miracle « Call For Media and Government Investigation

Sathya Sai Baba Chief, Dr Goldstein, Explodes. “I am the consummate professional” (See Film Clips)

Raising ever more serious questions about how spiritual is the head of what Sathya Sai Baba has called THE divine organization in the world,

Michael Goldstein explodes with anger (710kbs)

at the BBC’s perfectly reasonable questions about accountability

Dr. Goldstein again reveals his higher self (1.500Kb)

Michael Goldstein and the sexual allegations (2,10 Mbs)

Michael Goldstein admits his view is merely a belief (456kbs)

Sathya Sai Baba Cult Exposure By Major TV Channel In Australia « Call For Media and Government Investigation

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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)

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Posted in Morality, Neglected/sidelined News, Opinion, People, Propaganda, Religion, Sai Baba, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »