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

Posts Tagged ‘Pope Benedict XVI’

Institutional Sex Corruption: Plight of Roman Catholic Church and Sathya Sai Organization

Posted by Barry Pittard on September 19, 2010

  

The Pope may kiss little children, but did he protect them? Certainly not.

In the face of far too powerful, worldwide exposure of endemic Roman Catholic Church corruption, Pope Benedict XVI has called for reconciliation. Only at this chronically late hour, and in response to dire and universal threat to his institution’s survival, does he begin to treat sexual abuse as a reportable crime, and make apologies, and require his officials to take meaningful actions against the sexual abuse that the world now knows is rampant in his Church, and profoundly and endlessly covered up by it.

It is the year 2010 and yet official communiques coming from the Vatican and other official sections of the Roman Catholic Church almost make it sound as though sexual abuse complaints involving priests all over the world were something new. There may be contrite tears now, and official cries for reconciliation, and even some prospect of redress for survivors. But where were these down the aching years of victims’ anguish?

The Sathya Sai Organization still has not come to this point. It too has lain low. It too has turned a hard heart of the cries of individuals and families whose lives have been shattered by appalling misconduct that eats like a canker in its midst.

In both the Church and the Sathya Sai Organization, there is the same constant mouthing of values such as truthfulness, right conduct, love for all, peace, and non-violence in thought, word and deed. There are the same blindness, callousness, attacks upon the integrity of those who, against enormous odds, speak out. And the same profound cover up.

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QUOTE (Excerpt):

The Australian

Pope breaks silence over Belgian abuse.  From: Times Online. David Charter. September 14, 2010 10:59AM

THE Pope was said last night to be feeling pain over the extensive pedophile priest scandal in Belgium as the country’s top bishops appealed for abusers to come forward to help with a process of reconciliation.

It is the first time that the Vatican has made clear Benedict XVI’s feelings of dismay after a report last week by a Church-appointed commission revealed 488 alleged cases of abuse, including 13 where the victim committed suicide.

Archbishop Andre-Joseph Leonard, head of the Roman Catholic Church in Belgium, announced yesterday that a new body would offer support to victims.

This failed to satisfy campaigners wanting punishment of 91 living perpetrators identified by the commission’s inquiry into cases dating back 50 years …..

Sam Deurinck, who said that he was abused by priests when he was aged 11 to 13, was one of a handful of protesters outside holding pictures of themselves as children.

“I think it will be old wine in new bags. The bishops have found for many, many years several techniques to gain time and to postpone their final judgment,” he said.

Walter Van Steenbrugge, a lawyer representing about 30 victims, said that the Church should be ready to pay compensation and leave cases to the justice authorities.

The commission, which was set up under Professor Peter Adriaenssens, had little co-operation from serving priests and was unable to finish its work.

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The briefest glance at current headlines and news stories gives a sense of what now faces the Roman Catholic Church. But then – what about all the other institutions?

See: The Sydney Morning Herald (or vitually any other newspaper):

‘Priest defrocked over sexual misconduct’
AN ANGLICAN priest has been defrocked after a professional standards board discovered he had engaged in multiple sexual liaisons, including with at least one woman from his parish.

‘Flood of new priest abuse allegations’
A Belgian committee probing allegations of pedophilia by priests has been flooded with complaints since the resignation of a bishop who admitted abusing a boy.

‘German priest to leave US in abuse case’
A German priest has been suspended and ordered home from a posting in the US as he faces allegations he abused teenage girls in Germany two decades ago.

‘Priest, 83, under house arrest for abuse’
An 83-year-old Brazilian priest detained on allegations of sexually abusing young boys has been moved from jail to house arrest.

‘Brazilian priest charged with pedophilia’
Brazilian authorities charged a 74-year-old Catholic priest with pedophilia after eight children in his church choir accused him of sexual abuse.

‘Priest sex video on sale in Brazil’
A video of a priest receiving oral sex in a church from a former choir boy was being sold in the streets of Brazil.

‘Priest, 84, in sex act with choirboy’
An 84-year-old Brazilian priest caught on camera in a sex act with a choirboy has been arrested and put in detention.

‘Belgian priest tells of 300 sexual abuse cases’
BRUSSELS: Belgian bishops have failed to punish any clergy over 300 complaints of child sexual abuse brought to their attention in the 1990s, a priest who helped many victims claims.

‘Pope urges Catholic penance over priest scandal’
Pope Benedict XVI on Thursday urged Catholics to “do penance” and a top cardinal called for a mass rally by clergy to support the pontiff under fire over widespread paedophile priest scandals.

‘French priest admits child abuse’
A French Catholic priest has admitted sexually assaulting a minor, and sees his arrest as a “deliverance” after years of private torment, his lawyer says.

‘Malta hosts pope under priest sex abuse cloud’
Pope Benedict XVI was due to give mass Sunday in front of St Publius Church on Malta, even as the controversy over child-molesting priests followed him to the tiny Mediterranean island.

‘Priest jailed over sex with altar boy’
A former Anglican priest has been jailed for a second time on child sex offences.

‘More child-sex charges for NSW priest’
A NSW Catholic priest already facing multiple child sex charges has again been arrested over a further allegation of similar offences.

‘Vatican accused in new US priest case’
The Vatican and Pope Benedict XVI have come under fire in the US for allegedly covering up for another predator priest and doing nothing to remove him.

‘Rome waited to ban pedophile priest’
The future Pope Benedict XVI took over the abuse case of an Arizona priest, then let it languish at the Vatican for years despite repeated pleas from the bishop for the man to be removed from the…

‘Vatican comments on US priest case’
The Vatican’s lawyer says then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger told a bishop to make sure a priest didn’t abuse children while the church worked to defrock him.

‘Priest suspended over sex abuse’
MUNICH: The priest at the centre of a German sex-abuse scandal that has embroiled the Pope continued working with children for more than 30 years, even though Pope Benedict was personally involved in…

‘Church swamped by priest abuse claims’
Norway’s Roman Catholic Church received so many tip-offs about possible paedophile priests following revelations of abuse by a bishop that its computer crashed.

‘Priest preyed on deaf children, victim says’
ST FRANCIS, Wisconsin: Arthur Budzinski says the first time the priest molested him, he was 12 years old, alone and away from home at a school for the deaf.

‘Irish priest defends sex abuse cover up’
A Catholic bishop in Ireland has ordered a priest to remain silent over his views that church officials should not tell police about child abusers.

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Robert Priddy has just blogged on Pope Benedict. He writes:

“The Pope believes firmly in eternal hellfire, as he showed before he realised the damage this would do him. He later tried to tone down his ill-advised ‘eternal’ pronouncement, but it was really too late… we know what he really believes, because The Sunday Times (March 27, 2007) reportedThe fires of hell are real and eternal, the Pope warns: ’Hell is a place where sinners really do burn in an everlasting fire, and not just a religious symbol designed to galvanise the faithful, the Pope has said.’: “Hell “really exists and is eternal, even if nobody talks about it much any more”, he said.”

The damage-limitation exercise which followed later on was reported by the Catholic News Agency, as follows: ” In reply, the Pope called heaven, hell, and purgatory “fundamental themes that unfortunately appear rarely in our preaching,” journalist and church expert Sandro Magister reports. Pope Benedict speculated that the condemned might not be numerous, describing how thoroughly they would have to have destroyed themselves: “Perhaps there are not so many who have destroyed themselves so completely, who are irreparable forever, who no longer have any element upon which the love of God can rest, who no longer have the slightest capacity to love within themselves. This would be hell.” (http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/what_the_pope_really_said_about_hell/)

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Related Reading at ‘Call For Media and Government Investigation of Sathya Sai Baba’

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

Sexual Abuse Priests. What?! The Pope Never Knew?

Ireland Acts On Clergy Sexual Abuse. India Does Not Act On Sathya Sai Baba

Is Heat Too Much For Swami Nityananda, Under Fire By Sex Abuse Allegations?

Boy Scouts of America – Sex Abuse Revelations. Who Next?

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

Standing Up To Cultic Monoliths. (Sathya Sai Baba Organization Example)

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

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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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Posted in Morality, Opinion, Religion, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Sexual Abuse Priests. What?! The Pope Never Knew?

Posted by Barry Pittard on March 28, 2010

Some international commentators opine that there is a net of terrible revelation closing in on Pope Benedict XVI. One revelation after another indicates that he has for many years known about the endemic sexual abuses, both of children and adults, happening within the Roman Catholic Church. And that he has, all along, failed with any probity (unless it accorded with antiquated, incredibly out-of-touch notions of an ancien régime) to act. To the contrary, he has called, all along, for secrecy. A key issue is whether any ecclesiastical authority has the right to deal with crimes within its own entity. Countless sexual abuses have not been reported to the police, and strong sections within the Catholic hierarchy have triumphed in a division between Church and State that appalls most who live in a western democracy.

See companion article to this post:  

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

Posted by Barry Pittard on March 23, 2010

The same high-handed rebuff to legal sovereignty of the secular state was, in effect, asserted by the longtime, now retired world coordinator of the Sathya Sai Organizer, Indulal Shah. See:  Indian Newspaper Reports of Killings In Sai Baba’s Bedroom . One of the most responsible papers in India stated:

“When press persons met Mr. Indulal Shah, chief functionary of the Sri Satya Sai World Trust, after the murders of six young Sai followers in Sathya Sai Baba’s bedroom in 1993, Indulal Shah is reported as having said: ‘the matter is purely internal and we do not wish to have any law enforcement agency investigating into it.” (from The Hindu, 10-6-1993).

(For further evidence of how powerful institutions which have a respectable facade nonetheless master the dark arts of cover up, I shall in an upcoming post turn to the mounting allegations of massive cover up of sexual abuse by the Boy Scouts of America, which faces watershed legal action)

If any should think that the Vatican has not been for centuries, and is not to this day, a heavy hitter in the murky world of realpolitik, they have not paused to read even the standard historical accounts. 

  

The BBC has called Sathya Sai Baba ‘the secret swami’. See:  The BBC’s ‘The Secret Swami’ – A Revision . Whether they are from the top handful of universities in the world or from major international media, investigators immediately confirm the entire aptness of this appellation. Both the Vatican and the international Sathya Sai Organization deal, at their very hub, in secrecy. The unsavoury topics guarded by this clandestineness are those from which the rank-and-file members, not to mention investigators, are kept in the utmost ignorance at every opportunity possible.

In the world of power politics, ecclesiastical or secular, Machiavelli, author of ‘The Prince’ is no mere ghost. Or even Italian any more. He mentored: “A wise ruler ought never to keep faith when by doing so it would be against his interests”. Larger than life, he is everywhere kicking in heads, hearts, minds and souls of those who rise up to question elites entrenched in their power. Indeed Italy, the locus of the Vatican, gave birth to this master of statecraft-by-cunning-means. But he belongs to the murky world in every geopolitical cranny. It is said that he was President John F. Kennedy’s bedside reading.

For the cleverest and well-born boys I taught in India at the Sathya Sai college outside Bangalore, South India, and for their familial forebears, the everlasting Indian equivalent is Chanakya (known also as Kautilya), the presumed author of the treatise the ‘Arthashastra’. He predates Machiavelli by eighteen centuries, but cedes nothing to him. He counseled:  “Do not be very upright in your dealings for you would see by going to the forest that straight trees are cut down while crooked ones are left standing”. He too lives vibrantly – another ‘invisible man’. Another ‘secret swami’. Chanakya was whispered into their ears away from the rest of the family, and put into their hands for committing to memory, and otherwise communicated by networks of nods and winks. My erstwhile and much-loved students are now out in the world of power and influence doing their darndest. Some of the choicest and most history-steeped of them would, I am sure, to this day be able to look Mr Pittard in the eye with the greatest of directness, warmth and charm (just as when they last rushed up to me at Puttaparthi in 1997 after my long absence), with the terribly invisible Chanakya sitting godfatherly and approvingly on their shoulder.

Be in Puttaparthi and accompanied by any acutely well-informed Indian observer, you will have discreetly pointed out to you a not always charming gallery of those who protect Sathya Sai Baba to the nth degree.  You will be privy to a long roll-call of players in the inmost circles of power – governmental, political, armed forces, police, judicial, diplomatic, financial, industrial, and so on. Sathya Sai Baba brings vast foreign and other revenues to India, and, irrespective of what party or coalition of parties ascends in India, he is profoundly protected.

One’s ultimate discussion with oneself is whether one rolls over and cedes to the bully boys (and most in these rigid, autocratic hierarchies are indeed male) – or not.

For my observations on the current sex scandal erupting in India concerning Swami Nithynanda, see:

Why Nithyananda Sex Scandal Investigations and Not A Sathya Sai Baba Probe? In this article, I have proffered some reasons why the Nithyananda scandal has not been hushed up, in marked contrast with Sathya Sai Baba. The Pope and Sathya Sai Baba are immensely ‘big fry’. Nityananda, although reputed to have large numbers of devotees worldwide, is a minnow by comparison.

Robert Priddy

Swami ‘Paramahamsa’ Nityananda scandal – latest

Posted by robertpriddy on March 28, 2010

Investigations of sex cover-ups not ’smear campaigns’

Sai Baba school closed because of reported sex abuses

Nityananda sex scandal compounded by his lies and deceits

Nityananda video, lies and ’sex allegations’

Pope Benedict’s Standing In Grave Question

The Netherlands: More than 200 Catholics have until now reported sex assaults.
Germany: Over 250 sex assault cases are under investigation.Austria: A series of accusations of sex abuse have surfaced recently.
Ireland: Two reports in 2009 document sexual and physical abuse on a huge scale in Catholic institutions.
USA: An independent commission in 2004 received 10,667 accusations of abuses by Catholic priests from 1950 to 2002.
UK: A monk who ran a Catholic school was given 8 years prison for decades of child sexual abuse. Two other monks were convicted for sex assaults in 2007.
Australia: In 2008, there were 107 convictions in sex abuse cases connected to the Catholic Church.
New Zealand: There has been a series of accusations of sex abuses in Catholic schools.
Canada: In 1989 a newspaper exposed sex abuse in a Catholic children home in Newfoundland, after which 300 previous children homes have reported sex abuses!
Argentina: Brasil: Peru: the Philippines and Senegal have all reported similar cases.
(Source: Norsk Telegram Byrå and DPA)
See A timeline

US lawyers have released a letter with a potential to be highly damaging to Pope Benedict.

Associated Press Report

Pope under fire for transfer, letter on sex abuse

By NICOLE WINFIELD (AP) – Mar 12, 2010

VATICAN CITY — Germany’s sex abuse scandal has now reached Pope Benedict XVI: His former archdiocese disclosed that while he was archbishop a suspected pedophile priest was transferred to a job where he later abused children.

 The pontiff is also under increasing fire for a 2001 Vatican document he later penned instructing bishops to keep such cases secret.

 The revelations have put the spotlight on Benedict’s handling of abuse claims both when he was archbishop of Munich from 1977-1982 and then the prefect of the Vatican office that deals with such crimes — a position he held until his 2005 election as pope.

 And they may lead to further questions about what the pontiff knew about the scope of abuse in his native Germany, when he knew it and what he did about it during his tenure in Munich and quarter-century term at the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

………  

The Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Federico Lombardi, issued a statement late Friday noting that the Munich vicar-general who approved the priest’s transfer had taken “full responsibility” for the decision, seeking to remove any question about the pontiff’s potential responsibility as archbishop at the time.

Victims’ advocates weren’t persuaded.

“We find it extraordinarily hard to believe that Ratzinger didn’t reassign the predator, or know about the reassignment,” said Barbara Blaine, president and founder of SNAP, Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests.

 See remainder of report HERE

See Also

Sinead O’Connor’s statements!

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

Posted by Barry Pittard on March 23, 2010

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

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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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Posted in Morality, New Age, Opinion, Rationalism, Religion, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments »

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

Posted by Barry Pittard on March 23, 2010

It is enormously instructive to watch the unfolding saga of papal apology for clergy sexual abuse. Large numbers of both Roman Catholics and others round the world have expressed deep dissatisfaction with the Pope’s apology. They say that it goes nowhere far enough, and does not address acute issues of crime and punishment. The Roman Catholic Church, like the international Sathya Sai Organization, has every reason to be afraid of sore depletions  of membership and finance, as well as moral standing in the world community.

RC Abuse Priests Collared. Clergy sex revelation storms threaten worldwide

RC Abuse Priests Collared. Clergy sex revelation storms threaten worldwide

There have been many critical commentaries from within and far beyond the Roman Catholic Church. They make it clear that there are central issues of institutional power and control that prevent far-reaching and genuine reforms from taking place. Even when the methods of statecraft far exceed the spirit or even letter of an institution’s spiritual, ethical and moral aims, it is the long history of powerful institutions to use the apparatus of legalistic and other forms of self-protection. In other words, cover up. And, at best, cosmetic reform. For a glimpse at an ancien régime swinging into action, see The Times report: Vatican moves to distance Pope from abuse scandal. Richard Owen. Rome.

 

Sorry Pope Indeed

Sorry Pope

 

What many Roman Catholics, including one of the greatest and outspoken theologians in Church history, Professor Hans Kung, and others are, in effect, asking is: why is this man so publically sorry now and not years ago, when he was cognizant of sexual abuses within his church?

The Dark Pages That Have To Be Faced

A secular example. The immediate past US President George  W. Bush’s name will stand forever darkened by his secret policy of “extraordinary rendition”, where prisoners deemed to be a threat to US security were spirited away to countries friendly to the US which routinely practise torture, so that the hands of US citizens would not personally be bloodied by the heinous acts then committed without the knowledge and consent of the American people at large.

Again, cover up. Again, acknowledgement only when the forces of exposure have reached tipping point.

Typically, among the lower orders of institutional membership, there are many who rationalize and justify an autocratic leadership’s  actions and instructions that appear to enhance or protect an institution. The rank-and-file do not act with the full knowledge, cynicism and realpolitik of those right at the nub of power. That this relative kind of ignorance, naivety, piety (or whatever form it takes) cannot, and should not, be used to plead excuse was made very clear in the Nuremberg War Crimes Trials that ran from 1945 to 1949.

What of India’s shame?

As we can see in recent weeks, there has been a public upsurge of concern at sex scandal revelations about high-powered religious figures in India. See: Nityananda Sex Scandal Erupts in India. Sathya Sai Baba Lessons? .

 
 

 

Puttaparthi Sai Baba. Will soon rule world, he says

Sathya Sai Baba will soon rule world, he says

Note: The glitter of pure gold, and immense pomp and circumstance are the order of the day at Sai Baba’s ashram at Puttaparthi. See:

It forever echoes in my mind how a then editor of The Times of India told me privately that Sathya Sai Baba is too powerful to take on. One irony was that one of the most powerful figures on the Sri Sathya Sai Central Trust – the former Chief Justice of India, P.N. Bhagawati, was at the same time on the Board of Directors of The Times of India. In fact, our group had to work extremely hard to get UNESCO senior management to cause the Press Trust of India (PTI) to make amends for publishing a gravely watered-down version of the UNESCO Media Advisory concerning Sathya Sai Baba and certain of his key officals. See:

The Case of UNESCO’s Missing Media Advisory and BBC Caught UNESCO Head Bowing To Indian Government

In India, a particularly lamentable fact that speaks  against religious institutions is that their scandals have often had to exposed by such courageous rationalists as the late Basava Premanand.  See:  Basava Premanand Long Challenged Indian Governments To Come Clean On Sathya Sai Baba and Basava Premanand. Vale. A fighter for truth who lived what others preach .

Or, as anywhere in the world, by whistleblowers from’inside’ who undergo the most shameful attacks by those who proclaim to live by ‘Life, Love and Spirituality‘.

See also:

Religion and the Catholic Church Sex Abuses

Posted by robertpriddy on March 21, 2010

Ireland Acts On Clergy Sexual Abuse. India Does Not Act On Sathya Sai Baba

Posted by Barrypittard on November 27, 2009

Reputed Media and Other Agencies Decried By Sathya Sai Baba’s Defenders

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(Up-and-coming article at Call For Media and Government Investigation of Sathya Sai Baba:  Australia’s Shame …)

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Excerpt from New York Times, Agencies Report

Pope’s words of remorse fall flat for abuse victims

JOHN BURNS, DUBLIN

March 23, 2010

“POPE Benedict XVI’s weekend apology to sufferers of sexual abuse at the hands of Catholic clergy in Ireland has drawn a deeply sceptical and angry response from many Catholics.

In the apology – a pastoral letter read aloud at all weekend Masses across Ireland’s 26 Catholic dioceses and handed out in printed form to thousands of churchgoers – Benedict ex-pressed ”shame and remorse” to victims and their families for what he called ”sinful and criminal” acts by members of the clergy. But in the apology, the Pope did not require that Cardinal Sean Brady, the head of the Irish church, or any other church leaders be disciplined for their mistakes, as some victims had hoped

Nor did he clarify what critics in Ireland and elsewhere have said are contradictory Vatican rules about the procedures for investigating abuse cases and church leaders’ responsibility to inform civil authorities about offences they uncover, a duty the Pope reiterated strongly in his letter.

By remaining silent on the issue of punishment for top church figures implicated in what critics in Ireland have described as decades of cover-up, the pastoral letter appears to have done little to assuage the dismay and anger of many in Ireland at years of revelations about paedophile priests and child carers”.  NEW YORK TIMES, AGENCIES

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

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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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Posted in New Age, Opinion, Rationalism, Religion, South Asia, Spirituality, Uncategorized, World Religions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments »