Call For Media and Government Investigation

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

Posts Tagged ‘Homosexuality’

Young Male Sex Abuse: International Legal Challenge Will Confront Key Sathya Sai Baba Men

Posted by Barry Pittard on July 19, 2011

Those Sathya Sai Baba accomplices who have so grievously outraged the innocence of boys and young men over many years had best not underestimate the sheer punching power and international outreach of law firms now being consulted. I am assured by my private means that they are able, via their experience and alliances in South Asia, to sort out the sheep and the goats in the Indian legal system.

Already some of Sathya Sai Baba’s officials know – to their considerable cost – that three  strong legal actions have already succeeded against them. It was unfortunate that, hitherto, these were settled out of court with mutual non-disclosure agreements. However, they should remember that there remain legal pathways ahead that they will not rejoice in facing.

SPECIAL NOTE:  Those who wish to litigate or in other ways support legal actions against those who supported the years of homosexual abuse of boys and young men, and other abuses, can, with assurance of strict confidentiality contact my close and trusted colleague Robert Priddy:  rero@getmail.no or myself, Barry Pittard at: bpittard@westnet.com.au or Jay Narain (former Sathya Sai student) client of Hunt and Hunt law firm (see below) at:  jnarain05@hotmail.com

One of the strategies is to ensure that corrupt forces within the Indian legal system, including complicit Sathya Sai devotee judges and other judges partial to them or to him, cannot further be allowed to subvert the course of Justice. 

See articles cited below, which expose former Chief Justice of India, P.N. Bhagwati, longtime Sathya Sai Central Trust member. Bhagwati was briefly, at the height of the recent series of scandals aired worldwide, the head of the Sai Trust. Given the opportunity, advocates on our side should not have too much bother exposing him and those like him, and others worse than he, to the world.

P.N. Bhagwati. New legal challenges ahead for Sai Central Trust stalwart

Of the morass within the Indian legal system that our international and Indian lawyers will have to cut through, I have earlier written. An old friend of mine, an eminent legal expert, speaks of the actions of Judges G.B. Patnaik and R.C. Lahoti with the concurrence of then Chief Justice Dr A.S. Anand as constituting a “kangaroo court”. See:Sathya Sai Trust In Vast Treasure Scandals: Secret Temple, Van, and Bus Stashes. Posted by Barry Pittard on June 20, 2011, where I wrote:

“Anyone accustomed to democratic court procedures can hardly believe, as one reads the lawyer’s notes in transcript, that judges could be so blatant. See, Record of Proceedings document of Hari Sampath’s 2001 case against Sai Baba in the Supreme Court of India.  See how the case is scuppered by Judges G.B. Patnaik and R.C. Lahoti with the concurrence of then Chief Justice Dr A.S. Anand. Prompted by concern for her client if he were to proceed in and Andhra Pradesh court – the proposed remedy of the judges, Kamini Jaiswal, a senior advocate in the Indian Supreme Court, strongly contested the three judges’ direction to pursue matters in an Andhra Pradesh court. 

Sathya Sai Baba Disposed Judges                                                    Sathya Sai Baba Disposed Judges

Soon after the three judges’ determinations, which have more than raised eyebrows among some most distinguished lawyers of our acquaintance, the Supreme Court of India deleted the public documentation. In vain, even the British Ambassador to India tried to obtain confirmation of the Supreme Court’s rejection of the Sampath PIL. The Court denied all knowledge of any record of the case”.

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Note from the website of Hunt and Hunt, a top Australian law firm which has an extensive international reach, and just one of the law firms being consulted:

“Many of our practitioners are regarded as thought leaders in their field. They are often asked to provide media commentary on various industry developments and legal issues.

Finance Monthly Law Awards 2011

fi_monthly_award

Hunt & Hunt is the winner in the category of International Trade Law Firm of the Year, Australia for the Finance Monthly Law Awards 2011

Hunt & Hunt is the winner in the category of International Trade Law Firm of the Year, Australia for the Finance Monthly Law Awards 2011

Established in 1929, Hunt & Hunt is a leading Australian law firm, with offices in Sydney (City and North West), Melbourne and Adelaide.

Hunt and Hunt’s strength and reputation are in three core areas – Commercial, Insurance and Property – and over the years has gained clusters of clients across a number of key sectors. These include financial services, transport, manufacturing, government, health, IR, education and property”.

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Further Reading

Ex-Chief Justice of India: Sathya Sai Baba “dictated my every single judgement” Posted by Barry Pittard on May 4, 2011

On Sathya Sai Baba: Times of India, Ex-Chief Justice Interview. What Judge Would So Opine?

Posted by Barry Pittard on May 1, 2011

Indian Ex-Chief Justice: “Wild, Reckless Claims” about Sathya Sai Baba

Posted by Barry Pittard on April 29, 2011

Indian Ex-Chief Justice: “Wild, Reckless Claims” about Sathya Sai Baba

Posted by Barry Pittard on April 29, 2011

Most Recent

Towards Accountability Of Sathya Sai Baba’s Accomplices: A Call To Legal Action

Posted by Barry Pittard on July 16, 2011

For Those Connected With Sathya Sai Education Institutions: A Reckoning Time

Posted by Barry Pittard on July 16, 2011

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Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba

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

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More Testimony To Male Sexual Abuse By Sathya Sai Baba

Posted by Barry Pittard on May 1, 2010

In the exposure of Sathya Sai Baba and his cult, international coordinators such as Glen Meloy (deceased), Robert Priddy, Hari Sampath (in the earlier stages) and I have had a work which we never would have wished upon ourselves. To be privy to the direct accounts of those whom Sathya Sai Baba has terribly abused (sexually and in other ways), and to process still many more such harrowing accounts in the form of written testimony, has not been easy. (Not to mention other demanding aspects). Yet, there is the sense of great privilege of service to one’s fellow human beings, and that whatever skills one has have been able to be exercised for the good. Every year that passes will vindicate our stand against all the cover up and lack of accountability and transparency by Sathya Sai Baba and his international Sathya Sai Organization. As this organization knows to its great coast, many people have left it after they have found – including by conspicuously alternate routes to internet revelations or our own organized network – appalling revelations. Not untypically, these discoveries occur via experience of local centers. Some of these have, after extensive discussion and deep sadness, disbanded.

Below, Sebastian Engelbarts  of The Netherlands relates his account of abuse experiences at the hands of Sathya Sai Baba.  My close colleague Robert Priddy made all due effort to apprise Sebastian of what going public can invoke – as indeed is our strict practice with others in touch with us with their accounts – and the latter decided that he had the resolve necessary to withstand come-what-may. 

I need hardly point out that, over several years, many testimonies have been shared with us with the request that they be kept confidential, and Robert Priddy and I (in our role of coordinators) – or others along a supportive network, often professional in background – have respected this. Other Sathya Sai Baba abuse survivors have stated that they would wish only to make public their experiences in the context of investigation by, for example, a respected organization such as the BBC, Times of London, TelegraphThe GuardianUNESCO, Interpol, etc.’ and/or by a court of law in a democratic country. 

I wish to add – as often – that,  for those who wish to avail themselves of legal or counseling services, we are happy to assist in obtaining these in the context of international best practice, with all the proper guarantees of accountability. In genuine circumstances of need, professionals in these areas can look to fee modification or waiver. Those who may wish to support in any way a well-mounted legal action against the international Sathya Sai Organization, can contact Robert Priddy or myself, and we can refer to leading international legal personnel. It can be assured that this cause is both profoundly just and compelling. A similar situation obtains in ensuring counseling facilities for those individuals and families whose lives have been shattered by their past association with Sathya Sai Baba and his cult.

Just some of the recurrent themes have included: 

attacks on the integrity of every individual who has stood forth, calling for proper, third-party government, police and legal enquiry into allegations against Sathya Sai Baba and the international Sathya Sai Baba Organization

– the testimony to the genuineness of the abuse survivors by family, friends and those who have long known them

– the unceasing testimony spanning decades, which keeps on coming to the present

– the way in which much testimony has often come from those who have no knowledge of each others’ experiences

the wide number of countries from which the survivors and witnesses have come

– the decades of dedicated service of many former devotees who have stood forth, and their long records of service in their professions, trades and wider communities

– evidence coming from those who came to grief with Sathya Sai Baba but who were never devotees or any part of his organization

– our failure thus far to mount any successful case in India, because of the sheer, well-nigh inconceivable extent of Sathya Sai Baba’s clout right across party political, governmental, police, legal and other power sectors.  See my article:  

Why Has Sathya Sai Baba Not Faced The Indian Justice System?  Posted by Barry Pittard on January 14, 2010

– the abject failure of office bearers (except those many who have left on matter of ethical principle because of these issues) in the Sathya Sai Organization to evince duty of care and accountability. This fact bears the most striking resemblance to other institutional cover ups, about some of which I have written. See:

  • Typical Testimony of Sathya Sai Baba’s Sex Abuse of Young Males
  • Is Heat Too Much For Swami Nityananda, Under Fire By Sex Abuse Allegations?
  • Boy Scouts of America – Sex Abuse Revelations. Who Next?
  • Sexual Abuse Priests. What?! The Pope Never Knew?
  • Why Nithyananda Sex Scandal Investigations and Not A Sathya Sai Baba Probe?
  • Roman Catholics’ Deep Concern At Pope’s Apology. But He Is Way Ahead Of Indian ‘Pope’ Sathya Sai Baba
  • BBC Transcript ‘The Secret Swami’ (Sathya Sai Baba’s Frauds Exposed)
  • Nityananda Sex Scandal Erupts in India. Sathya Sai Baba Lessons?
  • Standing Up To Cultic Monoliths. (Sathya Sai Baba
  • Ireland Acts On Clergy Sexual Abuse. India Does Not Act On Sathya Sai Baba
  •   

    My experiences with – and observations of – Sathya Sai Baba

    Date: 03-02-10

    By Sebastian Engelbarts
    The Netherlands.

    In August and September of 2009 I went to India. I have been travelling to India 12 times since 1990. The first few trips my only goal was to go to Sai Baba. Later I also travelled to other places, all over India. All in all, I think I have spent at least one year in Prashanti Nilayam, spread over those almost 20 years.

    At age 14 in 1975, I was initiated in Transcendental Meditation (TM), from Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. I did the advanced course, called Siddhi Course, at age 17.

    Though they still tell you that TM will bring you enlightenment, I am certain that it doesn’t. But in the beginning I eagerly believed that at age 21, I would be enlightened. I meditated regularly in the beginning years, TM brings you a lot of inner peace, but there is a lack of evaluating your experiences and life. To me it was a sort of wild growth. Being raised with TM, reading books of Rajneesh, Yogananda and all the books that come on your path, I was already being indoctrinated with the Indian way of looking at saints and sages, i.e. with reference, but without sound research and reasoning. This was because of my age, I guess.

    So from age 21 (1982) up to 1990, I was struggling my way through life. At the end of 1989, a friend of mine told me to go and see Sathya Sai Baba. I knew nothing about him, I only knew what he looked like, because somewhere down the years I saw a picture of him and remembered his name. He also gave me a picture of swami that had a text saying “No one can come to me unless it’s my will”. So this was my second conditioning. I prayed to Sai Baba to please let me come and I promised I would stay for 3 months.

    So early 1990 I went to India. Once in the ashram I was immediately caught by his books, all telling about the satpoorna  (full) avatar. I remember that I thought ‘if this would only be true, how fortunate am I and the people here in the ashram: An accumulation of many lives of hard spiritual work, now we are here in the presence of God himself.’ And here it seemed they had rules and regulations, I was missing in TM, and with love as its core.

    I wasn’t particularly proud of myself, for all the things I had done wrong for the past few years. So trying to make up for it, I lined up everyday, but always hid behind someone else, because he could see right through me, I thought.

    Six weeks passed and I had made a lot of western friends, as in the beginning I would walk up to anybody I saw going in for interview. So I heard a lot of amazing stories, saw all kinds of rings, necklaces etc.

    I was in a Dutch group hoping for an interview and we got one after six weeks. But just some days before, a Swiss girl, who I thought was well balanced, she was a nurse and wasn’t much a person of outer appearance, had an interview with a Swiss group. She told me that Sai Baba scolded her for not dressing up properly, although all parts of her body were covered according to the rules. The only thing I saw was that she was wearing wide pants instead of a sari and the colours had faded from all the washing. She was devastated and so was I for her.

    One or two days previous to our interview, an Argentinean group had an interview. A guy called R., was constantly harassing Sai Baba for interviews and successfully, as I saw Argentinians getting a lot of interviews, thanks to him. I think he was gay (I could not make it out, but one of the Argentinean girls told me), so I won’t mention his name, but I think it is important for the rest of the story.

    So the Argentineans all walked up to the veranda, preparing for the interview. One Argentinean woman was not paying attention and only after somebody told her, she walked towards the veranda. Swami, by then, had finished his walkabout (darshan) and saw her walking towards the veranda. Then in a very cruel way he said to her ‘kssjjjt’, as if he was chasing away a dog. The woman, between 30 and 40 years of age, was shocked and walked back in disbelief. As she was walking back, you saw she was doubting whether this was meant for her, so she turned around and walked towards the veranda again. Then swami repeated his “ksssjjjt’ and she walked out crying. I was thinking to myself, that if he would do that to me, I would instantly drop dead on the spot, unable to bear something like that.

    So, once in my room, I prayed to him not to chase me away like that, if we had an interview, but instead for him to treat me like he was my father. I was also asked, previously to the interview, by a lot of western guys to come with them to Goa. It was tempting, but I promised swami I would stay for 3 months. So I also prayed he would give me an answer as to whether I could go or not.

    So, then finally after six weeks we got the interview. I was shaking and as I sat down on the veranda, I did not look at him, pretending not to see him in case he was going to chase me away. Once in the interview room I found myself sitting very near to swami, only an older Indian Dutchman in front of me. At least I had someone to hide behind a little, as he was not very tall. From what I have been reading lately on exbaba.com, he has the habit of walking to the fan, turning it on, as if making it comfortable, but also to take 2 vibhuti pills (‘holy ash’) , that are put there by one of his inner circle. He did the same thing at the beginning of the interview. He was already sitting and instead of asking the person sitting under the switch, he himself got up and turned it on. Walking back he materialized vibhuti twice, as there were a lot of women. All in all I estimated the gathering to consist of about 40 people; a Dutch group, a Swedish group and several Indians. Later on I started seeing that he has more of such routines.

    After distributing vibhuti only to the women, he sat down. Then he shifted the attention to the back (one of his routines), asking a woman about her sight. She said she was happy with what she still could see. It turned out she had only about 15% sight in both her eyes. I never noticed. But he knew or was it a lucky guess or had he watched them while they were going in?

    She was in my group for 2 weeks, but I couldn’t tell and she was always walking hand in hand with a girl friend. So swami ‘knew’ and ‘materialized’ a lingam. Explaining that it was the universe etc. He then, very proudly, showed it to everybody and said it had identical sides, that nowhere in nature this could be found, only God can make this. He gave it to her and told her to put it in a glass of water and drink the water daily.

    Somehow this is contradictory to what he tells, that god doesn’t go against his own laws, yet for an ardent devotee who deserves it, he will make it out of nothing. Otherwise he would transfer it from somewhere. He obviously violated his own law, because he said that nowhere in nature it could be found. So he must have created it from nothing. Why, was she that special? Maybe, I don’t know.

    Then again he shifted the attention to the back, asking a young Indian boy about his stomach. The boy said that he had no problems with his stomach. Swami said ‘yes, yes, not good’ and materialized a golden ring with a diamond. He explained that the diamond stood for ‘die mind’. He then called the boy to the front and placed it on his finger. It fitted and swami said ‘See, swami always makes perfect fit’. As I read more stories, this isn’t always the case, to put it mildly. Didn’t he know the stomach was ok, or didn’t the boy know about his bad stomach? Then turning to me, he said “what do you want?’ I said ‘just your blessing’ and he hit me on the head quite firmly.

    Why did he shift attention all the way to the back, so that everybody would look around?  Did they just happened to sit there, or did he need some time to grab behind his cushion?

    The old Indian-Dutch man in front of me was so incredibly excited, that he couldn’t keep quiet. Sai Baba several times told him to shut up and otherwise didn’t pay attention to him at all.

    Then swami got up and opened the door to his private interview room and invited all of us in. As I had already been sitting in the front and as I was one of the first to enter the private interview room, I thought about letting others sit in front instead. So I entered, made a left turn to go and sit against the wall, away from his chair. He suddenly turned around and said “No, no, you come”. He took me by the hand as he walked towards his chair. He held my hand while sitting down and placed his right foot exactly on my penis and pushed me down, all the while keeping his foot there, till I was sitting. He held my hand, stroked my arm, ran his fingers through my hair, pulled my nose and my cheeks. I wasn’t shocked, but I knew it was not an accident, that he placed his foot there. So this was going through my mind and also I felt awkward and embarrassed sitting there at his feet, him caressing me, while others were sitting at least 2 meters from him. He was treating me like a father, wasn’t he? Fond of his son.

    I was also thinking, ‘shouldn’t I be feeling something, sitting here hand-in-hand with the lord of the universe’? He was talking away, while I was feeling embarrassed. Why did I have this good fortune? I didn’t live an exemplary life, on the contrary. As I was pondering about what was going on, he turned to me and said,  “Where is your wife?” I said in Holland. He said, “Is it your wife or your girlfriend?” I said ‘it is my girlfriend’. He said “Not good, two boyfriends, but she has got only one heart”. And it was true. Just before I left for India, I found out that my girlfriend, since I was a mess, was seeing a former boyfriend. But why these questions? Was he checking me out if I was available or did he know? What was the importance whether she was my wife or not? Did he know or did he guess, since I was not wearing a wedding ring? Did he know she was seeing her old boyfriend or was he trying to put doubts in my mind? To me it seemed later that it is one of his routines to ask questions, so it doesn’t matter what answer comes, yes, no, maybe. Your mind always finds a way to fit it in somewhere, thinking that it is that, what he is referring to. Then he talked away again and again turning to me saying “Time waste, money waste, too many women”. I thought to myself, time waste is correct, money waste also. From my viewpoint it was true, from his viewpoint it is true for all westerners. You’re supposed to think of God 24/7, if not, it’s time waste. Money waste is also true for all westerners, since he says you need only one pair of shoes. All westerners have more than one pair of shoes.

    But then ‘too many women?’ That was not true. I was sort of a handsome guy, but I was, until then, not so much interested in women. I was too busy sorting out life. If I look back, at the time I was with Baba, I was 29, looking younger, there were enough women who were interested in me. I let almost all of them pass by. So this, about too many women, was puzzling to me. But isn’t sex quite normal in the west and for sort of a handsome guy, already living for 29 years, I could have had enough sex. But I wasn’t that much interested. A few years later I made up for this, so I was telling myself that it was that what he was referring to. That I would have a lot of women in the future. The mind can bend everything in any direction, if you’re not facing the facts.

    After sitting like this for maybe 20 minutes, Sai Baba took us back to the first interview room and now as I was leaving the room as the last person, again I was sitting in front of swami, as his chair is near to the door. 

    He then asked if there were any questions. One Swedish boy told swami that he had an accident with his motorbike. Swami immediately reacted, saying “Yes, yes, I know. Terrible accident, but I was there, I saved you”. Did he? Then why didn’t he avoid the plane crash at Bangalore airport in February 1990. It was a plane from Indian Airlines, a domestic flight from Bombay, in which there were several devotees, who died.

    I can recall an interview somebody told me about. When I asked about it, the guy told me that there was an old Indian man, grief stricken, as he had sent his son to ask Baba some things. He was in the plane that crashed and when he asked Baba about it, he said “don’t worry he is with me now and he’s fine”. So, if you don’t die, he saved you and if you die, nobody has to worry, because he is with swami now. It’s that simple.

    Anyway, about the Swedish boy. He had been in the hospital for 10 months and he had undergone multiple surgeries. They were planning more surgeries, but gave him a break, so he could recover first. He asked swami whether he should have more surgeries and swami said “No, no, I will take care of you”. I have met the guy several times since. In the beginning he was accessible, although difficult. But after a few years he didn’t talk to anybody anymore. He looked extremely unhappy, depressed, and angry. I think after ’98 I haven’t seen him again.

    After he finished the conversation with the Swedish boy, he told the group that he would be leaving for Brindavan and asked if we were all coming with him. Then he looked at me specifically and said “Are you coming with swami to Brindavan, it’s such an opportunity for you to be with swami”. So here was the answer. I wasn’t supposed to go to Goa, but to stay with him. He knew about my promise, didn’t he? Or was it for some other reason. Before leaving the interview, a lot of people took out a picture and swami wrote on it ‘With love, Baba’.

    As I didn’t have a picture of swami, I took out a picture from my money belt. It was a picture of my son, who was 3 years old. I gave it to swami upside down, but somehow he saw, probably because of the photographic paper, that it was different. He turned it around and as he saw it wasn’t a picture of himself, he threw it on the floor before me in a kind of angry way. He could have given it back in a decent way as I was only sitting 1 meter in front of him. Why did he reject it this way, rejecting my son like that? Was this the same man, who just before, had overwhelmed me with his love? The days after the interview I was drained of energy, depressed, feeling nothing had changed.

    A lot of Dutch people were going home, so we decided to form an international group and went to Brindavan. There were Swiss, Australian, British, German and Dutch in our group.

    In our group was a British guy, called Keith. His story is also on the Internet (http://213.10.134.161/rvdsandt/ex-baba/engels/witnesses/keith.html). He had told me that he had come to Sai Baba to find out what had happened between his boyfriend and Sai Baba in 1989, who had several interviews with swami but on returning home to the UK, he committed suicide. During my stay in Puttaparthi, I hung out with Keith a very handsome, beautifully built, dark skinned young man. We lined up together and one time we were in row 8 somewhere, as swami walked by. He looked at Keith and then at me and again at Keith and called him in for an interview. Afterwards Keith told me that swami had no time for him now, but he would have another interview soon.

    I was puzzled as to why swami invited Keith instead of me or the both of us, for he looked some time at the both of us. It started to dawn on me that it looked like swami had a very good eye for gay man. I started paying attention to this and over several years found out that when he singled out men, a lot of times they were gay. After the interviews to these men, I went up to them asking about the interview. On many occasions they had been given rings, a lot of times a silver ring with an enamel portrait of swami. Keith had one.

    I realize that it could be a coincidence: that it just happened by chance when I was around.

    Anyway, after maybe two weeks while we were in Brindavan, the international group got an interview along with a Dutch group. Alexandra Nagel was in that interview, as well as Keith.

    I don’t know how it happened, but again I was sitting right in front of swami. I wasn’t doing it on purpose as my mind was blank of any elation. In this interview men and women were not sitting separately and swami didn’t distribute vibhuti.

    Swami again started off with shifting the attention to the back by asking an old Dutch lady, who was over 80, how her legs were. As she didn’t understand English, somebody had to translate it for her and as she answered the translator back and he was ready to give swami the answer, he was already involved in a conversation with us young boys in the front. I thought to myself that it wasn’t very decent, he seemed not at all interested in her answer. So the translator never gave her answer. I thought to myself, here they are, two ladies well over their eighties, very religious. They were raised as Christians, but it could never satisfy their needs. Then they read a book about Sai Baba and found what they were missing. Their children paid for their tickets and they came together with a Dutch group. Here they are in the interview room, being asked a question, but never being able to answer it. Incredible. Did he again need some time to grab behind his cushion, by shifting the attention to the back?

    He said to a Dutch guy next to me ‘Oh! You have a ring, let me see. Oh! Picture of swami,  how nice. Give it to me.’ But the ring had been given to the guy by swami in a previous interview, why did he act so surprised? Was it because on the market you could buy the same rings and he didn’t remember the guy anymore after seeing so many people every day? Anyway, by then I had read many stories about how he changes rings. So I thought, now I will be witnessing one. He took the ring and I was focused on his hands. To my utter astonishment he buried the ring in his right palm, leaned forward, shuffled his right hand behind his left arm, almost entirely against the left side of the chair and kept his hand there for a while. I could not see his right hand anymore as he was leaning forward towards the guy, who was sitting, seen from his side, on the left. And his left arm was also blocking his right hand. Now I was completely crazed. Here I am sitting, one meter in front of swami, an opportunity of a lifetime event and now he starts playing tricks on me. Finally he drew back his hand and kept it in front of us, but still covering it in his palm, he blew three times on his hand and out came a golden ring with three diamonds. He asked the guy if he wanted the ring twice. The guy responded twice ‘whatever you want swami’. Then he put down his hand again, but I didn’t pay attention anymore, as I was too much in my head. He again blew three times on his hand and out came the same old ring.

    After all this, swami stood up and called a 26 year good looking guy from the UK into his private room, behind a curtain. Don’t remember his name. From where I was sitting, I could peak through the curtain. Swami was facing my way and the guy was standing with his back towards me. I saw them standing close together, but could not see what was happening. Swami looked at me, knew I could see them, but he wasn’t bothered by it. When the guy came out, he called me in. I kneeled before him and he put his hand on my shoulder. He asked when I would be leaving and that he would see me again before I was going. This never happened.

    Once the interview was over, we all wanted to know what swami had said to the English guy, but he remained silent for three days, only talking to his girlfriend. Finally after 3 days, he came out with the story. Swami had asked him to lower his pants and as he hesitated, swami told him not to worry as he created him. So he lowered his pants and swami oiled his genitals. At this certain point, he was ok with it, because swami had probably healed him. 

    One year later I went back to India and I ran in to Hari from Australia, who was also in our international group, the previous year. Hari told me about Keith who had several interviews in private and that in one interview swami took his hand and put it between swami’s legs and Keith felt female genitalia. Than he had to do padnamaskar (touch his feet) and as he got up, swami again took his hand and Keith felt an erected penis. I don’t know if anything more had happened, but Hari told me that whenever Keith went for darshan afterwards, he held up his necklace with a cross on it, whenever swami walked by. He thought swami was some sort of devil; Ravana.

    By this time I was really getting worried, as evidence was mounting and was told by people with whom I was sharing rooms, lining up and spending my days with. What to do?

    I found out that Hislop was in the ashram. I read some of his books and knew he was close to swami. He also used to be the first TM teacher in the US way back in the sixties, before he met Sai Baba. Maharishi had spent some time at his home in the US. One day I saw him in the southern canteen, I walked up to him and asked him whether I could ask him some questions. “Of course”, he said, “Shoot.” So I asked him about all the confessions of the rituals regarding the oiling of male genitalia, swami’s transformation from female to male etc. He obviously hadn’t expected these questions, so he became quite uncomfortable. He didn’t answer my questions, but stated the following, “There is no doubt in my mind that swami is divine.” I asked him what swami thought of Maharishi and TM and the Siddhi Course. He said that swami told several people to stop this meditation. Swami also told a couple who had learned how to teach other people TM that they should stop as they were not able to teach meditation. And that the Siddhi Course was children playing with fire. But the same swami tells people in interviews not to go to any other gurus, and why go to these human gurus if you can have God as your guru, thus referring to himself. The other ones were money gurus and he was not. Now we know better.

    On that same trip, we went to Brindavan before going to Kodaikanal. In Brindavan in a weekend at morning darshan, there was an Indian couple. Their baby was very ill, it seemed lifeless. Everybody was upset and eagerly waiting for swami to help them out. As swami came out, he totally ignored the pleas of the couple and of all the other devotees who wanted him to help them out. The couple stayed all day and in the evening darshan he again completely ignored them and went back to his living quarters. I don’t exactly know what happened to the couple. But I do know that there was an interview for all the westerners some days later, where he told a story about a mayor and a lawyer, who were in full control of a village and they ripped people off and disowned people from their property. It seemed that he was referring to the woman and the child in a previous life and that their suffering was self-inflicted. But that we, mere humans, could not oversee the whole picture but he could, so he was not moved by their despair. What grandeur!

    We went to Kodaikanal, where again all the westerners were called in for interview.  He scolded us for sleeping around, man and women sharing rooms. That he disapproved of all such things. But since there was no accommodation other than hotels, private homes, of course people who knew each other shared rooms, to cut down the costs. Prices were high, when swami was around. Even I shared rooms with women and men, but it was not a sexual thing at all. Maybe some people slept around. But what a generalisation and again a putting down of sincere seekers.

    In1992 I went to Puttaparthi again, but I wasn’t able to line up anymore. I kept to myself and didn’t return before 1997.

    At home I tried to live up to his rules, but I found it completely impossible. I went to groups, singing bhajans, but after 3 times of bhajans, I was fed up. We in the west have such beautiful classical and modern music. Do we have to end up singing these simple songs, about myriad aspects of God, over and over again? I didn’t like them and compared to western music it was utterly boring. I also couldn’t stand all the stories that were told during these meetings, but from people lacking experiences, just parroting stories.

    However, after I left in 1992, I started a company and it rocketed sky-high for several years. Of course we, by then my wife and I, having 2 children, dedicated this to swami. So, we were trying in this way to help people. But in 1996 my wife left me, for she had married her first real boyfriend. She wanted some more experiences. My whole world collapsed. I found myself in an isolated position, as her father and her new boyfriend were working in our company and turned against me. So again being a complete mess I went to India in 1997. By that time I was really angry with swami for destroying my life. If you take one step towards me, I will take a hundred steps towards you. I took hundreds of steps, drove hundreds of kilometers, flew thousand kilometers to him, but still not a single step did he take towards me.

    He claims: “If you shed one tear for me, I will wipe a hundred from your cheeks.” I’ve shed thousands of tears, not one was wiped of my cheek. “No leaf will fall from a tree, unless it’s my will.” So ruining my life happens because of his will. Thank you very much.

    If he asks you a question, no answer will do, you’re always wrong. Even if he asks you the same question the next day and you repeat his answer to the question, he comes up with a different answer. You’re always wrong, everything you do is wrong. He is constantly putting you down and saying that he is the sole solution. You become dependent, depressed and insecure. Though in your prayers you don’t ask for wealth, but for a good heart, character etc. nothing happens. You wait and wait and wait, but nothing is going to happen.

    For women it’s even harder, he most of the time completely ignores them. Using phrases like “Wife, knife”. WIFE meaning, “Worries Invited For Ever.”

    But still I was doubting myself, so here I was again in Puttaparthi in 1997, looking at this clown in his orange robe. After 2 days I told swami in my mind that if he would not let me meet people I know, I would leave. For I knew nobody anymore. So what happened, I met the beautiful family that I also met in 1990. Swami’s grace or coincidence?  This family looked to me like the perfect Sai family. They were leading a centre, wrote and played their own bhajans. They came for the ultimate proof, that Sai Baba was what he and the parrots said he was. This was the family which the BBC documentary “The Secret Swami” is largely about. I saw them getting interviews, I saw most of the rings, necklaces, earrings, watches. But I never really knew how it ended, because I left before they did. After seeing the movie, I realised that they had their ultimate proof, but in what a sad way. They were so nice and willing to do anything for swami and he destroyed them. I am fully convinced of the integrity of this family.

    From ’97 till 2002 I went back to Puttaparthi once or twice a year. Every time I was there, I thought ‘what am I doing here?’. I hardly lined up to get to be at his ‘darshan’ and when I did, all the time I would see his vibhuti routine. Coming out from his living quarters, he was always lifting his robe a little with his left hand, so he could keep his hand closed. Then he takes letters with his right hand and puts them in his left hand. Then he walks on, but now without holding his robe, because now he has the letters in his left hand and uses them to keep his hand closed. He walks over to someone and you can see his right hand going to his left, to take the vibhuti pill from underneath the letters, but he always manages to distract people, so they look at his face. Unless you know. When he transfers the vibhuti, you can see the fingers of his right hand are closed together and very soon he materializes vibhuti. After this, as he walks on, the fingers of his right are spread open, because he doesn’t have to hide the vibhuti pill anymore

    Once, as I was sitting in the front row, he accidentally dropped one pill in front of me. Immediately he placed his foot on it to crush it and looked at me with a big smile. As he moved on, the Indians got up to pick some of it and put it on their forehead.

    At that time I also thought, why aren’t we hearing anymore about the water projects and of more seva (service) projects. But instead we see him spending a lot of money on the hundreds of festivals. Not for his sake of course, but out of his love for the people that are gathered around him. This was not very motivating to people who were willing to do seva and spend their money and time to the sick and needy.

    In 2009, on my last visit, I stayed in Puttaparthi for about 10 days, outside of the ashram. I only once walked in and sat down on the mandir ‘temple compound’. Swami was sitting there in his wheelchair. After 2 minutes, I got up and left. Was this the same swami, who said that one day we would only see him as an orange spot in the far distance, for there would be vast crowds? Was this the swami that would live till 96 years of age? Was this the avatar who said that it was not in his nature to fail his mission, which is to restore Dharma and that nobody could stop him?

    Finally somebody outside told me a little about what had happened to ‘the perfect sai family’ I met in ’90 and ’97. Once home I finally went to the site exbaba.com which I had been avoiding since swami’s outrage in 2000, where he told his followers “Not internet but innernet” about the liars and that we ought not to talk about these things. I saw the movie ‘The Secret Swami’. I read a lot of articles and finally everything fell in place. I had been stubbornly ignoring all the signals for the past 20 years. I can tell so much more, but I will end here. For I think swami is not capable of his sexual misbehaviour any more and I would not be surprised if he were to die soon.

    My final conclusion. I don’t believe swami is omniscient, omnipotent nor omnipresent. He is clever and cunning and has a good eye for deceiving people. He mostly asks questions and it doesn’t matter what answer you give, he will end up saying ‘I know’. I’ve seen so many materialisations, but the ones I saw from close by, were all fake ones. As were the so-called diamonds. I’ve seen diamond rings with scratches from the concrete, as people were getting up. Only diamonds can scratch diamonds, not concrete or sand or whatever.

    Before any materialization, he shifts the attention away from him and his hands. It seems to me that he hates women and mostly ignores them, treats them badly and talks bad about them. Indeed he is only interested in younger males and they get a lot of attention in interviews and he is abusing them. I think he has a good eye for gay men. I think villagers know about these things and there are not many that believe in him. But they keep quiet out of fear for the police and because the westerners are their source of income. I believe he is somehow connected to the murders and if he were omniwhatever, he would have foreseen it and could have set an example of ‘love thy enemy’. How can any devotee ever think that the murders were part of his Divine Play (i.e. leelas!). But many of us, including myself, always find some satisfying inner answer. Again, the mind can do it all.

    At the beginning of my first trip, I met two Italian boys, somewhere in their mid-twenties. One boy was called Francesco and he was a very good looking boy. He told us about his private interviews with Sai Baba. In one of his private interviews Baba gave him an amount of money. By now, we all know why. Obviously to keep him silent, because we, mere mortals, would not understand. In one of his interviews swami said to the boy that he had been Saint Francis of Assisi in a previous life.

    On my second trip, one year later, Francesco was still hanging around and had met an Indian girl from Singapore. When the Singapore group got an interview, the girl told swami that she had met a boy and that she asked swami whether if he was fit for her. Swami asked for the boys name and she said it was Francesco. Then swami in a loud voice said ‘no, he is worse than a dog’. Many times swami says that dogs at least have reason and season. So being worse than a dog means, having sex without reason and season. Does Sai Baba  have reason and season, while taking advantage of young boys?  You can judge.

    After my last visit (2009), I started reading everything I could find on the internet and after seeing ‘the secret swami’, I was fully convinced that I had been deluded, for the past 20 years. I have to say I was a willing victim, in denial of all criticism and my own experiences and observations.

    However, one thing was still bothering me. Somewhere between 1997 and the year 2000, I met a family, who wish to stay anonymous. Their daughter had become very ill in India. Being completely dehydrated, the parents feared for her life. While the mother was staying in their apartment inside the ashram, the father and son went for morning darshan. They were sitting in the front line, opposite to where I was sitting. As swami walked by, the son told him, that his sister was very sick. Swami walked on, but 5 metres further he stopped and summoned the boy to come forward. He materialised vibhuti and gave it to the boy. They brought it to the girl.

    In the afternoon darshan, again they were sitting in front line and again I had a clear view of them. As swami came out, he walked straight up to them and asked about the girl. She wasn’t any better. He then materialised, as the father told me, something that looked like a tablet, not vibhuti. They gave it to the girl and she got a little better.
    By at that time I was about to leave for home and in my mind swami performed a miracle, by curing the girl. In my mind, I was completely convinced he had healed her. However, I never had any contact anymore with the family, so I couldn’t check the details.

    So after reading on the Internet the testimonials of ex-devotees and watching all the movies of the testimonies I could find, it became clear to me, that I never ever had seen any miracle. By now I convinced that swami had no powers whatsoever, at least he did not have them during  those 20 years I was there.

    But there was still this memory about the girl that got healed. Through sending e-mails to several people, I got hold of the father and I asked, if he could clarify me on this point. He then told me that the girl got a little better, but at home they had to contact a regular doctor, for her full recovery. I asked the father what he thought about the whole act. He had come to the same conclusion as I had, even though I had not told him mine, because in no way I wanted to influence his insight. Only afterwards I told him of the fact that I had come to the same conclusion.

    Our conclusion; as swami walked past the boy, who told him about his sister, he had to walk a little further, for he hadn’t yet transferred the vibhuti tablet from his left to his right hand and when he had done so, he called the boy forward. In the evening darshan, as he walked straight towards them, he had pharmaceutical tablet, probably from one of his doctors and he wanted to get rid of it as soon as possible. It didn’t heal the girl, it just helped her to get back home and visit a regular doctor. The family, throughout the years was witness to a lot of fake materialisations. They considered it a test of their faith. But after this incident however,  they lost all faith and interest in swami and have moved on since, with a life without swami.
    So far for the lord’s healing powers. 

    I thank everyone who came forward with stories and movies. I am specially thankful for ‘The Secret Swami’ as that movie finally opened my eyes. I wish all of them well. I remember the phrase of the son in the movie saying ‘any life is better than a life with Sai Baba’. And what about Baba’s saying ‘No one can fathom my grandeur’. Grandeur of what? The cheating, the molestations, the murders, the money wasted? I don’t want to fathom such grandeur. 

    Greetings, Sebastian.

    (Sebastian Engelbarts, Holland)

    ————————————————————————-

    International billions flow to Sai Baba

    In August 16, 2003. the Rediff news agency reported:
    “The largest recipient of foreign contribution was Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust — Rs 88.18 crore (Rs 881.8 million)”

    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

    The Secret Swami (BBC Television):
    (154 MB, Broadband)

    Seduced (DR, Danish Broadcasting, Denmark’s national television and radio broadcaster):
    (80 MB, Broadband)

    http://home.hetnet.nl/~seduced/seduced.wmv
    (21 MB, Modem)

    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

    ……………………………………………………

    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, New Age, Opinion, Rationalism, Religion, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

    Why Nithyananda Sex Scandal Investigations and Not A Sathya Sai Baba Probe?

    Posted by Barry Pittard on March 26, 2010

    The Swami Nithyananda sex scandal unfolds in India. One might well wonder – although a great many Indians who know the corruption that pervades the power elites in India will not be puzzled – why there have been decades of news blanketing in that country of reports that threaten the power and prestige of Sathya Sai Baba.

     Sathya Sai Baba, Lord of Mega Buck Pomp and Circumstance

    Sathya Sai Baba, Lord of Mega Buck Pomp and Circumstance

    The greatest factor is the grip that he has on politicians, judiciary, police, armed services, corporates, and so on. But there is a new and questing India that is growing among her young, who are increasingly throwing off the trammels of their forbears, who were profoundly locked in superstition and subservient to their British colonial masters. That she is still to a chronic degree prey to old and crippling attitudes, however, is evidenced by the prevalence of gerontocracy, nepotism and casteism among so many of her rulers. (These days, the casteism is often cleverly disguised). The young Nithyananda, though visited by various politicians, has clearly not had powerful enough protective patronage at high levels. His story got out. It was not spiked – or sufficiently spiked by editors. Which would be a bit difficult after Sun TV had broadcast steamy footage.

    Another  factor is that decades of allegations against Sathya Sai Baba relate to pedophilia and also sex with young men. Heavily tabooed sex more often repels. It is not likely to grind down the internet search engines with queries such as:

    Nityananda sex video, Nityananda Ranjitha video, Nityananda sex tape, Nityananda fraud, Nityananda video, Nityananda video of sexual act, Swami Nityananda Ranjitha full video, Nityananda video clippings, Ranjitha hot video, etc., …

    Heterosexuality is, of course, by far the norm, and here sex sells enormously more widely.  Especially, when the names of glamorous female film actresses like Ranjitha and Yurvarani are coupled with the hapless Nithyananda, the salaciousness index climbs sky-high. Of course, these young women are also hapless, and it is all very saddening to think of the likely impact on their lives.

    A glance at a cross-section of the Indian media, blogsite and other reactions indicate an appalling lack of respect for such civilized notions as benefit of doubt until more evidence is produced. The evidence against Sathya Sai Baba is huge, and, if she does nothing about this, India’s shame will endure down the ages. In the case of one so vastly powerful and influential as Sathya Sai Baba, history does not easily forget.

    A great many Hindus take the celibacy of monks and nuns under vows very seriously. The practice of ‘bramacharya’  means that a monk and a nun (swami or swamini) abjures a sexual life so that they can pursue single-mindedly a life of service to others, of prayer, meditation, and so on. Millions of Hindus support ashrams with this understanding in mind. It is a very ancient one. Therefore, a monk or nun who practises a double standard violates not only sacred oaths but is breaking faith with the understanding and trust that lie behind huge donations and other forms of support for any given ashram. In short, false pretenses.

    See also:

    Nityananda Sex Scandal Erupts in India. Sathya Sai Baba Lessons?

    Roman Catholics’ Deep Concern At Pope’s Apology. But He Is Way Ahead Of Indian ‘Pope’ Sathya Sai Baba

    Robert Priddy

  • Nityananda sex scandal compounded by his lies and deceits
  • Nityananda video, lies and ’sex allegations’
  • Sex scandal in Indian media – Nityananda and forerunners
  • ——————————-

    Report from

    Bangalore, Mar 20: Troubles are only adding up for scandal-tainted Swami Nithyananda as two more cases have been registered against him in Karnataka.

    Ramanagaram district police has received a statement from Guru Charan, nephew of Union external affairs minister SM Krishna alleging that the Swamiji is involved in many more criminal activities, reports DNA.
    “I have come forward on my own to file a complaint against the spiritual leader, who has hurt the religious sentiments of the people of Karnataka. This is required as no other person from the state has come forward to lodge any complaint against him till date,” Charan is quoted as saying.

    Besides this, a Kannada actor, Praveen has also reportedly lodged a similar police complaint.

    The media report published on Saturday, Mar 20 notes that both the men are from Mandya.

    The godman has already been slapped with several charges including rape, cheating, unnatural sex among others. Karnataka police is hunting for the godman, whose sex scandal came to light on Mar 2 when a sleazy video showing the Swamiji in a compromising position with Tamil actress Ranjitha hit the media.

    The case was transferred from Tamil Nadu to Karnataka as the sex tape is believed to have been recorded in Nithyananda’s Bidadi ashram.

    The Karnataka police believes that this is just the beginning and is expecting a lot more cases in the coming days.

    OneIndia News.

    http://news.oneindia.in/2010/03/11/swami-nithyananda-dismisses-all-allegations.html

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    Click here to view list of brief video clips available from the BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami’ documentary

    ———————————

    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 in  NewsGator Online Subscribe  in Bloglines Add to My AOLAdd to Excite  MIX Add Call for media and government investigation of Sathya Sai Baba  to Newsburst from CNET News.com Add to  netvibes

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    Posted in Movie Stars, New Age, Opinion, Religion, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 13 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)

    —————————–

    …  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

    Subscribe in a reader

    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 »

    On Leaving A Powerful Global Cult. Sathya Sai Baba Example (Part 2)

    Posted by Barry Pittard on January 26, 2010

    This article continues from: On Leaving the Sathya Sai Baba Cult – Ex Leaders and Rank-and-File. See also: On Leaving A Powerful Global Cult. Sathya Sai Baba Example (Part 3)

    ———————————————-

    … There was a feeling of truthfulness in the accounts of the authors, and I contacted them. They were – Terry Gallagher (who had resigned as head of the Sathya Sai Organization after rigorously investigating), Hans de Kraker (Australia, who for a number of years ran the Western Canteen at Puttaparthi), Jens Sethi(Germany), David Bailey (who had a rare closeness to Sathya Sai Baba, and an almost unprecedented plenipotentiary role), Hari Sampath (India), Glen Meloy and many others from the USA, such as Sharon Purcell (co-founder of the earliest Sathya Sai Baba center in the USA), Al Rahm (U.S.A., a major organization leader, and, in that country, head of the largest Sathya Sai Baba commune, and founder of the first Sai school).

    I contacted Britt-Marie (Bi-ma) Andén (former head of Swedish Sathya Sai Organization and a key figure Sathya Sai Baba Education in Human Values movement), and Conny Larsson (former head of the latter national organization).  When I spoke with Ms Andén, she outlined an account of Sai Baba’s sexual abuse of own son Jasper’s sexual abuse, and how she closed down her international Sai school in Gothenburg. In Stockholm, amidst a great many tears, compelling direct witness accounts were given to membership of the then large and significant Swedish Sathya Sai Organization, which broke up as a result of the revelations, and wider confirmation of similar cases in Scandinavia and elsewhere. One of the witnesses was a very young male, widely known as ‘the golden boy’ because of the gold trinkets Sai Baba would give to him. Conny Larsson told me how the courage of this boy in coming forward led to his own revelations about having been a Sai Baba’s homosexual lover. 

    As time went by, I had contact with many others in countries around the world, a brief list of whom includes:

    Dr. Naresh Bhatia, Dave Brandt, Stephen Carthew, Timothy Conway Ph.D., Ella Evers, Lionel Fernandez, Jed Geyerhahn, Dennis Hanisch, Alf Tidemann-JohannessenAfshin Khorramshagol (“Said”) Andries Krugers Dagneaux, Dave LyonsRick Raines, Mark Roche, Shirley Pike, Elena HartgeringLori Kaplowitz,  Marc-Andre St. Jean, Matthijs van der Meer, Alexandra Nagel ‘Neptune’, Roy Pendragon, Brian SteelArtur Wisniewski, Ullrich Zimmermann 

    I also had contact with those whose names and circumstances must not be discussed except with their written permission (including updated advice on any former undertakings that were positive towards proper court of dealings with best-practice media or government organizations or any other notable institutions). These include those who have taught or studied at Sathya Sai Baba education institutions. The situation of Indian witnesses was particularly acute. The joint family is a profound factor in Indian national life, and many of them had family closely connected with Sathya Sai Baba and his organization over the years. Some family members live in the Puttaparthi ashram and depend on Sathya Sai Baba’s largesse.

    As my investigation unfolded, I spoke to young males – and/or their parents. Their accounts of Sathya Sai Baba’s sexual abuse were heartrending. In the matter of my personal, emotional coping with the unceasing revelations, it was fortunate, in one sense, that both my formal work in education, social service and particular life experiences, assisted me as I listened to and read testimonies from people in various countries. Some had been so shattered that it was difficult and sometimes impossible to pursue discussions. As might be expected, some needed to vent; some only did so after a period of trust-building; and others wished (and this was a common phrase used) to “move on”. Of course, undealt-with trauma can much impede any real moving on.

    Featuring in many accounts was Sai Baba’s demand of the boys and young men to perform oral sex on himself.  Other factors repeatedly found were the use of bribes and threats. In case after case, the people involved were often regarded by those who knew them as unusually good-looking.

    I spoke to many who, in various countries, had been prominent leaders of the Sathya Sai Organization in various countries. As a result of their own investigations, they had resigned on a matter of principle . Many others left the organization quietly, without formal resignation. Many leave-takers do not want their names brought forward.

    A dilemma faces the international Sathya Sai Organization which it has not been able to resolve. Because it has maintained a glacial silence, it cannot even begin to do justice to thousands who have so deeply grieved. See Robert Priddy’s article:  Sai Baba: Glaring Publicity yet Silence on Critical Issues

    This dilemma may be expressed with the question:  why would those who have been its dedicated and respected members for decades, in some cases prominent leaders, not show the same integrity in investigating the terrible accounts as they have so long shown in their Sathya Sai Organization roles – and, what is more, in their professions and wider communities? I have noted in the article Global Sathya Sai Cult White-ants Itself :

    “The demands of professional investigators with whom former devotees have dealt in the attempt to expose the Puttaparthi corruptions are considerable. This includes Interpol, FBI, UNESCO, BBC, CBC, ABC, DR, SBS, The Times of London, The Daily Telegraph, The Guardian, India Today, Salon.com, Gatopardo, The Age, Financial Times (Australia), West Australian, Vancouver Sun, The Ottawa Citizen, Toronto Star, BT, Trouw, Spiegelbeeld, Noordhollands Dagblad, Focus, BILD …

    If investigations were to uphold Sathya Sai Baba and his core servitors then all is well for them!”

    See,  Sathya Sai Baba. Media Source List)

    I have had contact with Al Rahm, father of the Rahm family. They had an exceptionally high profile in the Sathya Sai Organization. In fact, Al Rahm started the first Sathya Sai school in the USA. Al and Marisa Rahm and their son (with his account of having been serially sexually molested by Sai Baba) appeared in 2004 in the BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami’I quickly add that many others, whose accounts did not subsequently appear in the documentary, had discussed their experiences with BBC researchers such as Iris Asic and David Saville and Tanya Datta. David Saville, the assistant producer, with whom I worked closely for several months, told me that there were eventually over 80 hours of filmed testimony, and that the BBC had uncovered compelling accounts from others who did not appear on our private international lists. (These are essentially now in the hands of Robert Priddy and myself, and we can direct enquiries of those with excellent professional bona fides to relevant professionals within our ranks).

     Almost overnight, we had become demons!

    Further Resources

    The Sathya Sai Organisation’s Deception and Propaganda Exposed – by Robert Priddy and Barry Pittard. Part One Part Two Part Three

    Petition For Official Investigation Into Sathya Sai Baba Cult (Article on)

    Some prominent ex-devotees of Sathya Sai Baba

    Posted by robertpriddy on June 28, 2009

    Witnesses (An alphabetical list linked to testimonies)

    Puttaparthi and Misconduct of Sathya Sai Baba’s Officials

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    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, Rationalism, Religion, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , | 5 Comments »

    Joseph. Early Sathya Sai Baba Whistleblower

    Posted by Barry Pittard on May 27, 2008

    Particularly for those readers those who were Sathya Sai Baba followers for decades – who are continuing to leave the Sathya Sai Organization and gradually recovering memories of their experiences – I am reposting, having unposted, my first WP blog article at – https://barrypittard.wordpress.com

    This February 2007 article was then entitled: Joseph’s Reaction. Was it shock of spiritual betrayal?

    In exposing corruption, painstaking documentation, as accurate as one can get it under often trying circumstances, is paramount. Sources keep on opening. Including ones that go way back, and it is good to see memories being jogged. Much of the documentation we keep from the public domain, such as the Internet, where fanaticism, distortion, libel, slander, stalking and hatred can ride high. As I often point out in red so there can be no missing it, many former devotees welcome third party investigation by the best quality media, by scholars, and law enforcement agencies.

    Documentation is much assisted by those with the rare gift of photographic memory, and also by those who kept careful written records. Yet when there is a sufficient pool of informants, where the chance of any collusion is remote or to be ruled out, the stream of informal information is also important.

    It may be urged, and in part mistakenly so, that memory is too fallible to be any reliable guide. Hearsay can dominate. Non-primary evidence can obtrude itself. And so on. The game used by psychologists that is most often known as ‘Chinese Whispers’ (See Wikipedia reference below) illustrates the marked dangers of accounts passed from person to person and of phenomena such as rumor, gossip. However, there are well-established methodologies by which to significantly counteract such problems. Sometimes, commonsense is not to be ruled out as a useful factor.

    Resource

    Chinese Whispers, Wikipedia Reference

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    “The mire was deep, & the child did weep”. William Blake, Songs of Innocence.

     
    Let me start with one of a number of experiences that haunt me and will not let my conscience be stilled. In 1979, in the crowd awaiting Sai Baba’s public appearance (darshan), Joseph (USA) sat along with the rest of us.

    I knew him well enough, and it was he who found me accommodation on my first arrival with wonderfully simple and decent village folk in Kadogodi, behind Sathya Sai Baba’s Whitefield ashram. He had told me that he was formerly a college lecturer in French. Called a hippy by the village children (who may have been somewhat right), he appeared to be in his thirties, and was one of three or so Westerners remaining after the hippies and others had departed from Sai Baba in the late sixties.

    Joseph began to discourse, for all of us to hear, and I sat just behind him. At times with rising stress levels, and with moral outrage, he repeated that that some college boys had told him Sai Baba had asked a number of them (in Joseph’s words) to “line up and masturbate.” On the third or so day of Joseph’s dark rumblings, six hefty Indian male service volunteers (seva dals) came and carried him out onto the street, ordering him not to return. I expect any of the thousand or so present can never forget the fight that the immensely powerful Joseph put up, roaring out the accusations for all to hear. A very distressed Indian man said to me, “If Sai Baba is God, why do they need to use all this violence against this man?” An hour afterwards, one of the volunteers told me that his duty of ejecting Joseph was “like wrestling a tiger.” He told me that his part in manhandling of Joseph saddened him because they had known each other affectionately.

    For the next days, while people awaited darshan, Joseph climbed a tree outside the ashram wall, and again cried out the allegations for us all to hear. Then, he was gone. I heard from a close friend and local resident, Siva Subramanian, a Tamil and retired grain merchant who knew some of the Tamil constables, that the Kadugodi village police had soundly thrashed Joseph, and sent him on his way.

    So much, then, for the cardinal doctrine of ahimsa or non-violence – in the land that still daily venerates my great hero since I was a child, Mahatma Gandhi – along with the Dalai Lama and Martin Luther King, a towering apostle of non-violence. Sai Baba everywhere preaches ahimsa, but does he – and do those around him – practise it? Many devotees will remember his brutal corrupt servitors like Kumar, the betel nut chewing, stick-wielding ex-superintendent of police, who was Sai Baba’s gatekeeper at Puttaparthi for many years. Diane, a woman in the Sathya Sai Baba group not far from where I live told me of her trauma at seeing violence perpetrated by some of Sai Baba’s assistants. She said it presented her with great doubts about Sai Baba but felt that she could not speak further. Her story is one of many such, a fact that devotees really need to face squarely.

    Just a small few of the grave complaints about Sai Baba, which are strenuously covered up by his servitors:

    • Large-scale, serial sexual molestation of boys and young men
    • Being implicated in police killings in his bedroom on June 6, 1993, along with massive cover-up by his ashram authorities and local, state and central government and police
      Faking many miracles
    • Promising but not delivering miraculous cures
    • Making prophecies which have not eventuated
    • Giving accounts known by modern science to be completely unfounded
    • Contradicting himself, over long years, in published discourses
    • Massive misappropriation of funds donated by devotees worldwide
    • Presiding over a highly unaccountable financial empire
    • Creating myths about himself, which he permits to be used as the basis for materials in public exhibitions, like the museums at Puttaparthi and Mumbai
    • Falsifying his birth and school details
    • Plagiarising the sayings of others
    • Running a worldwide organisation that is extreme in its lack of public accountability and transparency, and which hides certain core, but embarrassing beliefs and agendas when it runs its recruitment drives in luxurious, costly venues.

    And, alas, Etc., etc.

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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 Neglected/sidelined News, New Age, Religion, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »