Call For Media and Government Investigation

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

Posts Tagged ‘Mark Roche’

Sathya Sai Baba Abuse Survivors: When ‘Moving On’ Can Be Staying Stuck

Posted by Barry Pittard on December 6, 2010

Some former devotees of Sathya Sai Baba get upset that many survivors of his sexual and other forms of abuse do not go public. They make the same kind of mistaken assumptions that Sai Baba’s defenders make who ask e.g., where is all the proof? Both these reactions are ill-informed, inappropriate and insensitive.  

People who are badly traumatized – very typically – feel acute difficulty in being able to talk about their traumatic experience. One human reaction to trauma is lack of awareness of the extent to which upheaval has occurred.  Psychological denial, and wanting to ‘move on’ are common.  See: 

On Leaving the Sathya Sai Baba Cult (Part 1.)- Ex Leaders and Rank-and-File 

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

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

Refutation of smear allegations against ex-followers of Sathya Sai Baba (Many links)

It is widely found in a great deal of professional literature that a great many survivors endure years in silence and shame at what has happened to them. The case of those who have suffered at the hands of Sathya Sai Baba and some of his servitors is no different. Common experiences are:

  • Fear at being called a liar
  • Depression
  • Loneliness and isolation, e.g., after being shunned by those one has come to love and trust
  • Anger or suppressed anger
  • Self-blame and feelings of worthlessness
  • Flash-backs and other forms of disturbance at recollection of the abusive events
  • Feelings of torn-ness and confusion between positive and negative aspects of the relationship between spiritual teacher and the aspirant
  • Uncertainty about the exact order or nature of events – e.g., this lays an honest individual open to charges of fabricating, and many abuse victims who have faced adversarial lawyers have spoken about the  experience of being ‘raped twice over’.

See below, a list excerpted from:  Post-Cult Problems:  An Exit Counselor’s Perspectiveby Carol Giambalvo.

 A few who allege that Sai Baba has sexually abused them have attempted for a while to expose him and leaders of the Sathya Sai Organization. From many countries, the evidence emerges that the Sathya Sai Organization has repeatedly and profoundly failed in its duty-of-care and its responsibility to act professionally – what to speak of truthfully, honestly and compassionately. Dispirited, many survivors have wanted to ‘move on’. Others have said they are willing to testify so long as there are proper jurisprudential processes and a decent chance of success. Some will speak, and have spoken, with the media but only after the former devotee network, which includes very highly qualified abuse professionals, have carefully gone through the issues involved. An occasional individual like Conny Larsson, the former leader of the Sathya Sai Organization in Sweden – no matter the hatred and ridicule hurled at him by pro Sai Baba antagonists – will write a book. He has be willing to travel at his own expense to various countries, speak at conferences, appear on national radio and television, agitate among government and other movers and shakers, and so on. By far the most prominent author of a book critical of Sathya Sai Baba is Robert Priddy, who taught philosophy and sociology at the University of Oslo, 1968–1985. Of this book (publ. Indian Skeptic/B. Premanand. Podanur, Tamil Nadu, 2004), he has written:

“In 2000 I resigned as National Contact person of the Sathya Sai Organization in Norway after 18 years fulfilling that role. This was no easy decision, since I did not believe that the allegations of sexual abuse could be true, even though I knew that Sathya Sai Baba was deeply involved in the massive cover-up of murders in his own bedroom, and hence an accomplice to the fact.

Having refused to read David Bailey’s account or any of the flood of allegations thereafter for months, I finally felt I must read the sexual allegation testimony.  It took me about another six months of intensive investigation – contacting all the sources I could – before I was forced to arrive at a complete conviction that most of the allegations were both true and accurate. Subsequently I began to look carefully into all aspects of Sathya Sai Baba from the viewpoint of critical questioning and found, to my dismay, deceit after deceit and evidence of a major campaign of deception by him and all those close around him. This resulted in many web pages, which the award-winning rationalist, Basava Premanand, asked permission to publish”.

See also, Priddy on his earlier pro-Sathya Sai Baba book ‘Source of The Dream – My Way to Sathya Sai Baba’ (New revised ed. 1997 Samuel Weiser, Inc. P.O. Box 612. York Beach, ME 03910-0612. U.S.A. ISBN 1-57863-028-2), and the transition to his critical work.

Some survivors of sexual and other abuses by Sathya Sai Baba and some of his close servitors have, despite the great upheaval in their lives, joined our representations to governments, media and many civic institutions. Those who have dared to speak of their experiences on the Internet have been attacked in the extreme by some pro Sai Baba activists.

Many young males from countries around the world have come to our network with compelling accounts of being sexually abused by Sathya Sai Baba. Some much older men  like Mark Roche who shared his ordeals – when very young – in the BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami’ when much older) also speak to us of being seduced by Sai Baba, sometimes when they were in their teens, at others, when still very young men. Repeatedly, we find that survivors have not availed themselves of highly qualified professional counseling – even when it has been offered to them free of any charge.

In short, not debriefing, with proper professional counseling, their experience puts at grave risk an abuse survivor’s chances of health and well-being.

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Excerpted from: 

Post-Cult Problems:  An Exit Counselor’s Perspective

Carol Giambalvo.  (International Cultic Studies Association)

Common Issues in Post-Cult Recovery

Some of the recovery issues that keep recurring in my work with ex-cult members are:

  • Sense of purposelessness, of being disconnected.  They left a group that had a powerful purpose and intense drive; they miss the peak experiences produced from the intensity and the group dynamics.
  • Depression.
  • Grieving for other group members, for a sense of loss in their life.
  •  Guilt.  Former members will feel guilt for having gotten involved in the first place, for the people they recruited into the group, and for the things they did while in the group.
  • Anger.  This will be felt toward the group and/or the leaders.  At times this anger is misdirected toward themselves.
  • Alienation.  They will feel alienation from the group, often from old friends (that is, those who were friends prior to their cult involvement), and sometimes from family.
  • Isolation.  To ex-cult members, no one “out there” seems to understand what they’re going through, especially their families.
  • Distrust.  This extends to group situations, and often to organized religion (if they were in a religious cult) or organizations in general (depending on the type of cult they were in).  There is also a general distrust of their own ability to discern when or if they are being manipulated again.  This dissipates after they learn more about mind control and begin to listen to their own inner voice again.
  • Fear of going crazy.  This is especially common after “floating” experiences (see point 18 below for explanation of floating).
  • Fear that what the cult said would happen to them if they left actually might happen.
  • Tendency to think in terms of black and white, as conditioned by the cult.  They need to practice looking for the gray areas.
  • Spiritualizing everything.  This residual sometimes lasts for quite a while.  Former members need to be encouraged to look for logical reasons why things happen and to deal with reality, to let go of their magical thinking.
  • Inability to make decisions.  This characteristic reflects the dependency that was fostered by the cult.
  • Low self-esteem.  This generally comes from those experiences common to most cults, where time and again members are told that they are worthless.
  • Embarrassment.  This is an expression of the inability to talk about their experience, to explain how or why they got involved or what they had done during that time.  It is often manifested by an intense feeling of being ill at ease in both social and work situations.  Also, often there is a feeling of being out of sync with everyone else, of going through culture shock, from having lived in a closed environment and having been deprived of participating in everyday culture.
  • Employment and/or career problems.  Former members face the dilemma of what to put on a resume to cover the blank years of cult membership.
  • Dissociation.  This also has been fostered by the cult.  Either active or passive, it is a period of not being in touch with reality or those around them, an inability to communicate.
  • Floating.  These are flashbacks into the cult mindset.  It can also take on the effect of an intense emotional reaction that is inappropriate to the particular stimuli.
  • Nightmares.  Some people also experience hallucinations or hearing voices.  A small percentage of former members need hospitalization due to this type of residual.
  • Family issues.
  • Dependency issues.
  • Sexuality issues.
  • Spiritual (or philosophical) issues.  Former members often face difficult questions:  Where can I go to have my spiritual (or belief) needs met?  What do I believe in now?  What is there to believe in, trust in?
  •  Inability to concentrate, short-term memory loss.
  • Re-emergence of pre-cult emotional or psychological issues.
  • Impatience with the recovery process.

Carol Giambalvo is an ex-cult member who has been a Thought Reform Consultant since 1984 and a cofounder of reFOCUS, a national support network for former cult members. She is on ICSA’s Board of Directors, Director of ICSA’s Recovery Programs, and is responsible for its Project Outreach. Author of Exit Counseling: A Family Intervention, co-editor of The Boston Movement: Critical Perspectives on the International Churches of Christ, and co-author of “Ethical Standards for Thought Reform Consultants,” Ms. Giambalvo has written and lectured extensively on cult-related topics. In 2008 Ms. Giambalvo received ICSA’s Margaret T. Singer Award. 

Carol   Giambalvo     ICSA Board

POB 2180   Flagler Beach   FL32136-2180  USA

(386) 439-7541    

affcarol@worldnet.att.net  http://carol.giambalvo.home.att.net/

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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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BBC Footage Still Potent In Exposing Sathya Sai Sect (See Video Clips and Secret Swami Documentary)

Posted by Barry Pittard on September 17, 2010

A potent factor in successive waves of people leaving Sathya Sai Baba has been video footage exposing the fraudulence that is Sathya Sai Baba. Especially for those pressed for time, here are some decisive clips from the BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami’. Although the documentary was first aired in mid 2004, it has since been viewed in many countries worldwide.
 
”The Secret Swami’ has contributed to enormous damage done to the Sathya Sai Baba Organization, and the repute of its founder and those of his following who have – in some cases wittingly and in a great many cases all too unwittingly through being duped, covered up for him. The cover up has been mediated via successive state and central governments and police and judiciary in India, as well as by the actions of his hugely wealthy and powerful international Sathya Sai Organization.
 
Since 1999, former devotee coordinators have withstood untold threats and libel from this organization and its supporters, and do not intend to cave in. Speaking the truth – no matter the misunderstandings, distortions and often virtually daily attacks – is its own reward. It is a value Sathya Sai Baba and his devotees constantly harp upon. Living it is another matter.
 
Many key links, including the link to the full one-hour documentary, are found in this article:  The BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami’ – A Revision
 
                     Indisputable facts about Sathya Sai Baba by BBC
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SATHYA SAI BABA ‘THE SECRET SWAMI’
PHOTO & VIDEO GALLERY

SATHYA SAI BABA IN EXCEPTIONAL FILM SHOTS. FILMED IN 2004 AT SHIVARATHRI

VIEW THESE EXCERPT TRANSCRIPTS AND VIDEO CLIPS FROM

THE BBC TV DOCUMENTARY ‘THE SECRET SWAMI‘:

THIS DOCUMENTARY CAN BE BOUGHT DIRECT FROM THE BBC MARKETING DEPT.
AS A VHS VIDEO. FOR A FRANCHISE TO SHOW IT ON INDEPENDENT TV STATIONS,  CONTACT THE BBC.

3) DR. MICHAEL GOLDSTEIN DISCUSSES THE SEX ABUSE ALLEGATIONS AGAINST SAI BABA

4) DR. MICHAEL GOLDSTEIN STATES THE SAI ORGANISATION’S FAITH ABOUT SAI BABA

5) ISAAC TIGRETT DISCUSSES THE SEX ALLEGATIONS AGAINST SAI BABA

6) INDIAN EX-MINISTER OF EDUCATION, M.M. JOSHI, ON THE SEX ALLEGATIONS AGAINST SAI BABA

7) INTERVIEW WITH THE EX-HOME SECRETARY OF ANDRHA PRADESH

  8) VERY CLOSE DEVOTEES TESTIFY – SAI BABA’S SEX ABUSE AND DIRE THREATS ETC.

9) SOME CLOSE BEDFELLOWS OF SATHYA SAI BABA

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 (BBC) THIS WORLD – Documentary film: “The Secret Swami” TRANSCRIPT

Tx Date: 17th June 2004 This script was made from audio tape – any inaccuracies are due to voices being unclear or inaudible

The Rahm family introduction
Alaya Rahm visits Sai Baba
The first ‘genital oiling’ on Alaya Rahm
Mark Roche testimony on sex abuse
Alaya Rahm given cheap, false trinkets
Khushwant Singh [writer] on Sai movement
Kushwant Singh on ‘genital oiling’
Dr. M. Goldstein on Sathya Sai Baba as God
Dr. Michael Goldstein on ‘materialisations’
Dr. Michael Goldstein hears the Rahm’s account
Dr. Michael Goldstein secretly filmed!
Dr. M. Goldstein earns praise from Sai Baba
Sai Baba’s failed/faked lingam production
Sai Baba’s collapse after ’3-tonnes’ of weight!
Isaac Tigrett confirms sexual abuses
Premanand on Sai claims
Premanand shows Sai tricks
The Murders in Sai Baba’s bedroom
Ex-Home Minister V.P. Nair on the murders
V.P. Nair on reason for murder cover-up
Premanand on the murders
Minister Murali Mahohar Joshi loses his cool
UNESCO/US State Department warnings etc.

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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 

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A Sathya Sai Saga. Barry Pittard Recollects. Part 6

Posted by Barry Pittard on August 28, 2010

The series continues from:

A Sathya Sai Saga. Barry Pittard Recollects. Part 5.  Posted by Barry Pittard on August 21, 2010

A Sathya Sai Saga. Barry Pittard Recollects. Part 4.  Posted by Barry Pittard on July 27, 2010

A Sathya Sai Saga. Barry Pittard Recollects. Part 3.  Posted by Barry Pittard on July 25, 2010. 

A Sathya Sai Saga. Barry Pittard Recollects. Part 2. Posted by Barry Pittard on July 23, 2010. 

A Sathya Sai Saga. Barry Pittard Recollects. Part 1. Posted by Barry Pittard on July 20, 2010

Importance to Morale Of Professional Counselors In Former Devotee Networking

Among the increasingly networked former followers were mental health professionals, including highly qualified ones, up to associate professor in status.

One felt thankful for the presence of these abuse counseling professionals.  They, like many of us acquainted with compelling cases from around the world are in no doubt that Sathya Sai Baba has long been a serial sexual abuser of boys and young men, and other grave forms of abuse, including those by certain of his close associates. 

We laypersons can all learn, of course, more effective ways of managing shocking revelations that can occur in our lives. At the same time, the best of intentions can go awry if we mistake our limitations. We had to be aware, for example, that an abuse survivor who may sense urgency to warn and save others can risk unforeseen kinds of attack. This can relate to their families, professions, places of study, and so on. Those active in exposure also have to check their own urgency to obtain compelling documentation. 

A Letter From Shirley Pike, Ex-President , North Central Region – Iowa, U.S.A.

Elena Hartgering – My Story

Experiences of a woman – Åsa Samsioe from Sweden 

Hari Sampath, formerly connected with Sathya Sai Baba’s security and intelligence wing and Glen Meloy (q.v) showed strong leadership in international coordination efforts. Hari Sampath was at that time on a Green Card in the USA, working in software engineering for a major corporation. After a couple of years of intensive involvement, he returned to India, and embarked on other work. Glen  Meloy and I increasingly developed our own network and were involved in many activities, such as supporting survivors and their families and friends, documenting accounts, cooperating with those who were setting up websites (blogsites were a development quite far-off), dealing with the media, government and police instrumentalities, and civic and religious institutions. 

He and I continued to coordinate until he died of cancer on January 1, 2005. He was born May 3, 1930, in DesMoines, Iowa.  By this time, Robert Priddy, the former long-time head of the Sathya Sai Organization in Sweden, and retired academic of the University of Oslo, co-founder had done much investigative and documentary work, often independently. After Glen Meloy’s death (see below),  Robert Priddy and I became close collaborators, and have remained so since.

 Those who, in the uprush of dissident activities, have made public statements include Shirley Pike, psychologist (see above), (the late) Elena Hartgering, a psychotherapist, and Åsa Samsioe, psychologist. Each of them has worked professionally with cases of sexual abuse.

In late 1999, with former devotees from around the world, I began to act internationally at high levels of government, police, civic and religious institutions and media. Others, who at first came mainly from the USA, had attempted a little before us, to get the allegations out into the open.  Most notable of these was (the late) Glen Meloy, a retired Californian businessman. See:  Glen Meloy (“Standing up for truth and goodness”) – In Memoriam, whose valiant fight to bring out the facts was cut short by his death from cancer in January 2005. He magnificently fought – almost entirely away from the public internet – until sickness and death laid him low. His life was a glowing testimony to what Sathya Sai Baba and the Sathya Sai Organization please to call Sathya and Dharma (truth and righteousness), and to those who knew him as a co-worker and fellow devotee for decades, but who have buried their heads deep in the sand in an attempt to annihilate any history that is not found at the bottom of a turgid sand heap. Glen Meloy, however, had true grit.

Inescapably – then as hitherto – we were seriously hamstrung by the acute psychological and social sensitivities of the issues at stake. Some survivors waxed hot and cold in regard to speaking up or at any prospect of joining a class action law suit.  The example of a man now in the last part of his life who has spoken of Sathya Sai Baba’s sexually abusing him many decades before is Mark Roche. Although my close associate (the late) Glen Meloy was more directly involved in private discussion surrounding Mark’s experiences, I was able to see something of the anguish in the lead-up to his final, and indeed complex, decision to appear on the BBC’ documentary The Secret Swami. See:  BBC’s ‘Secret Swami’ Clip. Highly Respected Man Claims Sai Baba Abuse   When Young

One of our keenest ethical duties was to ensure that, in our wish to prevent further abuses, we did not put our correspondents under any pressure. There were quite terrible fragilities, the nature of which most of us (like the rest of the public) knew all too little about. This is why especially those of us who were coordinating the exposure of Sathya Sai Baba and his cult were deeply grateful for the mental health professionals among us.

However, there are some among the leadership in the Sathya Sai Organization who are engaged in extreme cover-up, and who have proven unaccountable to the media, the public and to their own rank and file. Hence the BBC’s title:  The Secret Swami. The international Sathya Sai Organization is very wealthy, influential and powerful, with an exchequer rated in the billions, and has become ever more of an authoritarian cult since active exposure began circa 2000.

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“It is discouraging to think
how many people are shocked by honesty
and how few by deceit.” Sir Noël Coward

“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act”.  George Orwell

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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 

          ————————————————————

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BBC’s ‘Secret Swami’ Clip. Highly Respected Man Claims Sai Baba Abuse When Young

Posted by Barry Pittard on May 14, 2007

Mark Roche (California, USA) was deeply devoted to Sai Baba from 1969. Among Sai devotees, former devotees and in his wider community, he has long been regarded as a man of decency, compassion and integrity. Revealingly, it is frequently only after former devotees leave Sai Baba (often after decades of great service and devotion) that Sai Baba and Sai Baba protagonists ‘convert’ them – in their own minds – into “demons”, “cawing crows”, “Judases”, etc.

Until he severed the connection, Mark Roche had been a Sai devotee for twenty-five years. Just out of his teens, he first visited Sai Baba in a 1972 group that included Dr John Hislop, for many years the head of Sai Baba’s organization in the U.S.A., and the extremely wealthy husband and wife who hugely funded Sai Baba, Walter and Elsie Cowan. In that same year, Sai Baba allegedly miraculously resurrected Walter Cowan, after he had died of a heart attack. In the final cut of the BBC film, Mark Roche’s account of the events as having been an eye-witness was absent, and not seen by the millions of viewers in many countries. This was unfortunate, because key Sathya Sai Organization leaders and thousands of members have long promulgated a story of miraculous resurrection. Roche’s account supports medical and other evidence that no such resurrection occurred.

Mark Roche says that, in a private place, Sai Baba offered him what is termed ‘pada namaskar‘. This is considered the greatest of privileges granted by a guru – called e.g., ‘bowing unto the Lotus Feet’). Sai Baba is reported to say, “I’ll give you a great chance”. Mark Roche says that Sai Baba then pulled up his robe and asked Mark to put his penis in his mouth. The BBC interviewer Tanya Datta asked, “Why would God want to put his penis in your mouth?” To those who have carefully considered the issues involved in issues such as abuse, self-esteem, the hunger to believe, the betrayal of faith, and human naivete, Roche’s answer resonates: “Got me!” (His emphasis indicated the meaning:  I simply do not know).

This sad scenario recurs in many Sai Baba abuse accounts from around the world, held by both former and non-devotee investigators, that attest to his widespread, serial sexual molestation of young males for many decades.

the-secret-swami-bbc.jpg

Note:  The film clip of Tanya Datta’s interview of Mark Roche is HERE

From BBC transcript of The Secret Swami.
 

Mark Roche
The teachings themselves were very universal and
adopted the attitude of embracing all other religions so that it wasn’t a matter of this religion opposed to that, that you had to leave whatever you were in to be associated with Sai Baba, it was something that just be a better Christian or a better Jew or a better whatever it is rather than necessarily having to leave it mixed with the fact that the person who is the head of that is claiming to be God himself.

Tanya Datta
It’s the special moment when God calls. And Mark couldn’t believe his luck when he was summoned for a private interview. But he emerged shocked and confused. Just like the Rahms, Sai Baba had oiled his genitals. Two years later Mark was called for an audience again.

Mark Roche
He kept saying stuff like that I’m giving you a great chance, millions want to touch the feet, you know, I’m giving you whole body, this is great chance, this is great chance. Then he went over to a different part of the building and pulled up his dhoti, which is Indian garment kind of thing and exposed himself and sort of indicated that I was
supposed to put his penis in my mouth, which, feeling intimidated and confused and all that, I did. And although it didn’t seem right to me but it just seemed like what I was supposed to do.

Tanya Datta
Why would God want to put his penis in your mouth?

Mark Roche
Got me.

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the-secret-swami-with-then-pm-vajpayee.jpg

Further Resources

BBC News. Note: Scroll down this news story to click link for viewing or saving The Secret Swami transcript.

Laying on of hands, New Statesman, Andrew Billen. Review of The Secret Swami. The guru who thinks he’s God is exposed as far from divine. As others have done, Billen refers to magicians like Derren Brown (U.K.) who are easily able to show how Sai Baba performs his ‘miracles’, such as producing pendants, sacred ash (vibhuthi, vibuthi, vibuti, vibuuthi), and other objects.

Sai Baba’s miracles, an overview, Dr Dale Beyerstein, This book, by a rationalist and an academic from the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada and rationalist, can be downloaded as a 100k zip file in .html format. Scroll down the Index to Section 3. for the material referring to Walter Cowan, which as an analysis, as is the case of the whole book, although dating from circa 1994, is still sharp and relevant.

The BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami – A Revision’ (2004-2007). By Barry Pittard

BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami’ and British Press Praise

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

BBC Hidden Camera in ‘Secret Swami’. Ethical?

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Robert Priddy

The Secret Swami summary by Robert Priddy – video clips

Posted by robertpriddy on May 27, 2010

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The Public Petition

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

About the Petition For Official Investigation Into Sathya Sai Baba Cult 

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

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

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 New Age, Religion, Sex, Society, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Psychotherapist’s Note On Ullrich Zimmermann’s Sexual Abuse Allegation Against Sathya Sai Baba

Posted by Barry Pittard on February 5, 2007

I have asked some contacts to view the Ullrich Zimmermann interviews.  Part 2 is found here.

Indeed, a most instructive comparison is afforded by viewing the Mark Roche interview with the BBC as well as the Zimmermann interview. Mark Roche is a California man, highly regarded in his community and once associated with many seminal figures in the Sai Baba movement, like Elsie and Walter Cowan (big Sai Baba philanthropists), Dr John Hislop, Dr Michael Goldstein, Bob Bozzani, and so on. With a degree of courage known best to those of us in touch with him at the time, Mark at last spoke out in his sixties, when interviewed by the BBC for its 2004 television documentary ‘The Secret Swami’. A film clip is at: http://www.rfjvds.dds.nl/thesecretswami/marcroche.wmv
The text transcript section of Mark Roche’s interview by the BBC’s Tanya Datta that refers to his fellating Sai Baba when a young man is found here.

Both individuals, like others from various countries and over many years, report Sai Baba requiring that they suck his penis (fellatio).

For detailed discussion of the Zimmermann testimony, see Robert Priddy’s page – Ex-Sai Devotee Speaks Out Convincingly About Sai Baba Sex.

The contacts are veteran professionals in the sexual abuse area, coming from various disciplines: psychiatry, psychology, psychotherapy and social work. Their reports, along with their qualifications, accreditations and contact details, will be made available to bona fide investigators from reputed media, government, lawfirms or various institutions and individuals genuinely interested in establishing the facts about Sathya Sai Baba and core leaders of his Sathya Sai Organization. The latter are no different to those powerful organizations, such as the churches, which have been shatteringly exposed for profound cover-ups of sexual and other abuses and who tried to resist both concerned internal and independent, third-party enquiry. Many of these institutions, now to the contrary, are under extensive reform and have put in place processes of accountability and duty-of-care. The Sathya Sai Organization and its founder have refused to do so. They will enter history as one of the wealthiest, most antiquated but powerful bastions holding out against modern processes of truthful disclosure and reform. The writer of the following is a woman psychotherapist, who undertakes to look at Parts 1 and 3 of the Ullrich Zimmermann interviews when time allows. (Her identity and qualifications are available to accredited members of her profession). She says:

“Ullrich Zimmermann is to be commended for coming forward with this material. He did not – at least those seven years ago – feel that Sathya Sai Baba was doing anything wrong. At many times during the interview, it struck me that Ullrich had been programmed by his prior knowledge of Sai Baba (his staunch devotee mother’s influence and so on) to expect that anything that would happen to him at the ashram and during an interview would be in his best interest. He says “I trusted him to do the right thing … totally trusted him … trusted that he would only do what is good for me.” With this mindset, he was able to suspend his normal rational mind, and enter into a disassociated state. Throughout, he was convinced of Sai Baba’s powers to “erase karma” and to “uplift” him. He thought the experiences – what the law and many cultures deem to be sexual molestations – were meant for his healing. It was as if there had been a kind of spiritual-medical treatment done for his good. That the behaviour would not be tolerated by professional or other ethics does not occur to him. Ullrich’s disappointment and criticism is for himself – that he was not able to maintain that “high energy” which he received from Sai Baba’s treatment. “Sai Baba had said I will change you completely.  It took years, and still I don’t feel abused. (I) didn’t have any means of keeping that energy. Lost that state in 5 weeks”. Later, Ullrich laments that he relapsed into old ways and never followed through with the devotion and going to the groups etc., so as to get empowered, as it were. Perhaps there is an implied criticism of Sai Baba for not creating a change that would last.

The damage to Ullrich took place a long time before any molestation. Its genesis would have to have occurred over that period when he became steeped in the Sai Baba mystique – when he accepted and trusted fully, as so many do, that Sai B Baba was God, all powerful and all loving.  This type of process is a basic one for cult adherence. Susceptible individuals suspend their rational process, and use the ‘magical thinking’ brain.  There is almost no limit to what many will accept and do under these circumstances. Being psychologically needy and dependent puts one at risk in such powerful situations. Organized religions have crafted techniques with rituals that suggest magic. A great many  forever search for ways of dealing with their mortality in a magical way.

I haven’t yet watched the other videos — there  may be  more along this line”.

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For Online Viewing and/or Dowloading

Resources

The Secret Swami (BBC Television) Broadband 154 MB

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

General

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

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Posted in Morality, Neglected/sidelined News, New Age, Psychology, Religion, Sex, Uncategorized | Tagged: , | 3 Comments »