10 Things we can Learn from the Bizarre Case of Sai Baba (A Manifesto On Reality-Based Spiritual Empowerment!)

Via Julian Walker
on Apr 28, 2011
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Sai Baba, the man heralded as “god on earth” by millions of followers died at 84 years old this week. Unlike many conventional  spiritual teachers, the guru taught no spiritual practices and preached a very simple message of universal love and the unity of all religions in God. He was most famous for his supposed ability to manifest holy ash or “vibuti” as well as watches, rings and necklaces out of thin air as gifts for devotees. He was most infamous for the many claims of sexual molestation of young boys who later wrote books, were interviewed for documentaries and even committed suicide over their trauma. More on all this here.

Sai Baba lived in the extreme opulence one would unfortunately expect given the history of famous charismatic gurus like Maharaji, Osho, Adi Da, Muktananda and others (all of whom he eclipsed) while those around him starved in squalor. To be fair, his organization did a lot of humanitarian work; opening hospitals and schools and providing drinking water to poor regions of India – but his death leaves  an estate worth over $9 Billion.

There are also allegations that a group of young men (presumably abuse survivors) who attempted to assassinate Sai Baba were killed in his inner sanctum and that because of his power and influence, counting even the Indian Prime Minister as a devotee, this case (as with the accusations of pedophilia) was never fully investigated.

For me this all strikes a chord in terms of my passion for integrating psychological and rational awareness with spirituality. Having read and responded to the various pieces posted on Elephant Journal about his death – I thought to offer my list of 10 Things We Can Learn From The Bizarre Case of Sai Baba.

Here they are:

1)    We are suckers for a good magic trick.

Come on, you remember! We are about 5 years old at a birthday party. A hired magician pulls rabbits out of hats, makes pieces of fruit magically appear under coconut shells and removes a beautiful shiny necklace from within the ear of the birthday girl, before presenting it to her as a gift!

Cognitive  psychology tells us that before we develop rational cause-and-effect thinking we are very prone to filling in the gaps with magical causality. It’s why you can get a child younger than about 7 to believe anything from Santa Claus to the Easter Bunny to being a parent who can see through walls, to magicians performing impossible tricks.

At this age we are often inculcated with literal religious beliefs as well. Even as we get older and start to (hopefully) relinquish Santa and the Tooth Fairy (I mean we all look kinda funny at a teenager who is excited that the Easter Bunny is coming, right?) many of us are still very well trained to maintain a reason-free compartment for belief in Jesus or other magical religious figures.

There is a child in all of us that WANTS to believe,  a child that is enchanted by the possibilities of magic – and when spirituality taps into this vulnerable,  gullible,  innocent  self we have faith again in the impossible, and we believe we have found a special loophole in an otherwise difficult and challenging world.

Sai Baba exploited this innocent, regressive need to the hilt. He was not alone in this – but you have to take your (rabbit-manifesting) hat off to him; he was the best.

2)    Everyone  is looking for the perfect daddy (or mommy.)

More psychology here – when we are very young we believe our parents are perfect. Daddy is the strongest and most kind man in the world, Mommy the most beautiful and intelligent woman in the world, right? This is part of our normal development. Self-Psychology theorist Heinz Kohut says we have natural “idealization needs” – it is part of how we form our sense of self.

When these needs are derailed by trauma, disappointment, harsh reality, they often lie dormant in us, waiting to be satisfied by charismatic lovers, rock stars, actors, teachers, and, yes – enlightenment-claiming gurus. This too can be within reasonable limits, or powerfully imbalanced and obsessive.

We all know what it is like to deeply admire someone and feel a strong emotional attachment to our idealization of them – and perhaps you have seen or experienced how this can also be dramatically out of proportion in some people. Kohut would say these folks have a vulnerability driven by very intense unmet idealization needs.

The other side of this equation is that often people who seek out positions of power and fame in which they will be intensely idealized are acting out of what Kohut calls unmet Narcissistic needs. Here our natural, child-like need to be the center of attention and to be told how wonderful we are has morphed into a grandiose and inflated expectation to be treated like – well, a god.

Combine someone with powerful unmet Narcissistic needs with someone with powerful unmet idealization needs and you not only have a seemingly perfect fit, but a recipe for disaster!

3)    We will fight anyone who criticizes our perfect magic daddy (or mommy.)

Now, remember those childhood  moments when someone challenged your parents perfection? They better not say THAT about yo’ mama, right?! And your Daddy can kick their Daddy’s ass any day of the week…

If as adults we are taken in by the magical claims and projected/idealized  perfection of a guru figure, we become very attached to this fantasy because it is meeting deep needs and soothing painful wounds we suffered at a very early stage of our development. Anyone who does not have this kind of psychological profile will find it hard to understand why someone else could get involved in something that seems so weird.

Once taken in, we cannot be talked out of it rationally and we will fight with passion to protect what has now become a part of our psychological identity. We believe that we have found the true god, real holy man/woman, the answer to all  our longings or fears. We may say “you don’t understand because you haven’t had the mind-blowing, heart-opening experience of the guru’s grace and perfection.”

Maharaji arrives in a Rolls Royce as ecstatic devotees look on.

Of course we may experience strong emotions, powerful altered states, deep reverence, awe, ecstasy – and we take these as “proof” of our interpretation that we are in the presence of something divine. It might just be proof that we are in a shared state of mania and emotional uproar, in the presence of someone who knows how to push those buttons.

We also  become trapped in a cul de sac of spiritual growth because we are not conscious of the needs we are fulfilling, nor are we consciously engaging the wounds/fears they represent because the magical parent fantasy is a kind of drug that keeps us high on our belief. We also now have a community, which serves as a substitute family, in which we really feel a sense of belonging and shared belief/purpose.

Very often this group identity includes a strong injunction against thinking for yourself or speaking out against the power structure – usually based in the notion that the guru knows best, and who are we to argue?

Welcome to the cult.

4)    Power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely.


Power is a difficult thing. We are instinctive creatures with a rich social evolutionary history. It is good to be King, because the king gets what he wants. With power, you can satisfy your needs and desires without anyone obstructing you. In cults organized around a charismatic leader who claims supernatural abilities or divine identity, democracy is out the window, accountability (for the guru) is over-looked, and there is a kind of implicit dictatorship, in which the fallible (and usually unstable and a little crazy) human being who has stepped into the role of guru is now held in the position of divine perfection.

This is bad for the community, AND bad for the guru. It creates an environment in which what Carl Jung called “the shadow” is completely ignored and so can flourish like a cancer. It is no accident that in most organizations founded with the best intentions to be spiritual and pure, the power abuse and shadow manifestation of very dark secret behavior is usually rampant. If you are curious, do some research into the organizations around Maharaji, Osho, Adi Da, Muktananda, Chogyam Trungpa, Hare Krishna, Yogi Bhajan… The list is long and the tales sordid and tragic. (I know you may be offended to find out that your favorite guru had a pretty dark shadow and that actually a lot of people were hurt by it – but wouldn’t you rather know the truth?)

Carl Jung

Absolute power centered in one idealized individual  is a recipe for disaster. For examples of how to avoid this – look at Jack Kornfield and others like John Welwood who have researched cult dynamics and created spiritual organizations that have built-in methods for maintaining accountability and ethics.

5)    Denial is not a river in Egypt.

Though the stories of Sai baba molesting young boys are rampant, and many long-term high-up members of the organization confirm it – there is a typically widespread denial. Even when confronted with testimony of grown men and their families who have suffered the trauma and devastation of these violations, many followers and even uninvolved,  but spiritually-minded people will use some combination of denial and rationalization  in response.

This usually follows some predictable variations:

Even if he did it, it was probably a way of helping them to become more enlightened, we cannot judge him from our unenlightened consciousness.


How could that be possible, he is a holy man – they must be making it up.


Perhaps he did it, perhaps he was a pedophile, but we must separate the man from the divine spirit he embodied, or we must separate the teacher from the teachings.

All of this, I offer, stems from an unwillingness to face the truth, out of a desire to protect magical fantasies, and ironically perpetuates the dark and seedy underbelly of criminal corruption and soul-destroying trauma.

Something has gone wrong when we do not hold holy men accountable to the same basic standards of behavior we expect from ordinary citizens.

As an aside, in the yoga world, I even have encountered this kind of denial and rationalization in response to the photograph of revered Ashtanga guru Pattabhi Jois engaged in an outrageously lecherous crotch “adjustment” of two young women in happy baby pose.

6)    Extreme relativism  kills critical thinking and authentic spirituality.

Have you noticed that extreme relativism is the lingua franca, the unacknowledged dogma, the popular religion of our community?

There are (I am told again and again) no facts, no objective truths,  science is out of style, everything is a relative perspective, your thoughts create your reality, who is to say what is healthy or unhealthy, true or false, and what constitutes psychological trauma or abuse, hasn’t quantum physics proven that this is an illusion?

While there are some important and valid truths speckled though this nonsensical worldview – it is mostly overblown,  rationalized nonsense. It makes us unable to look at something like the bizarre and tragic legacy of Sai Baba with reasonable, grounded spiritual honesty.

Here’s the deal people: There is a such a thing as truth. There actually are facts. Whatever your “perspective,” being suddenly (and then repeatedly) made to perform fellatio or lingam worship via oil massage on the man you (however erroneously) believe  is god constitutes a trauma that will fuck with your head (if you’ll excuse the metaphor) for the rest of your life.

Furthermore – there is no such thing as “god on earth,” no-one has ever had real magical powers and there are no “perfect” human beings.

These are not statements of relative truth dependent on perspective, context and cultural conditioning – they are facts, and we deny them at our peril!

7)    Letting go of the fake magic opens us to the magic of reality.

So, here’s the good news: the more we relinquish the magical fantasies of childhood, the more we can be enraptured by, appreciative of, and grounded in the real grown-up magic of the universe, the world around us, our humanity, love, creativity, reason, genuine spiritual practice, science, art and the vulnerability of being mortal creatures who’s life dance across the world stage is fleeting.

The more we heal from our early wounds, and relinquish our unreasonable childhood needs – the more our spirituality can be an expression of growth, health, grounding and integration.

Take the leap, let go of the plastic baubles, real jewels are all around you!

8)    Part of true empowerment is facing our powerlessness.

We are vulnerable to manipulation. We have complex and deep psychological patterns. We do not and will never have power over everything,  nor should this be our goal, nor should we seek out magical figures who we believe have attained this goal through some magical or divine means. Its just not part of being human.

Accepting that we are powerless before tsunamis, earthquakes, certain illnesses, accidents, genetics, economic and political forces, random violence from crazy people and the inevitability of our own demise allows us to humbly and honestly look for ways in which we can reasonably and effectively be more empowered in our lives – AND frees us from giving away our power to manipulative charlatans who promise the impossible.

9)    Behind all of this is our deep-seated fear of death.

If there was one practice that I think could take humanity’s spiritual development to the next level it would simply be this: sit daily with the reality of your certain death.

Try this as a meditation: Consider the fact that you will without doubt one day die. Soften around it, accept it, give love to the part of you that fears it. Even if only for a moment, let go of all consoling metaphysical attempts at believing you might find the immunizing loophole – and simply be present with death.


Flowers die, insects die, you probably have had pets that died. Human beings die too. Why should we be any different, because our brains are more complex? Because we have told ourselves stories about other worlds and disembodied beings?


It’s ok. It’s part of life. It will happen to us all. Believe what you want – but spend a little time sitting with the possibility that all we have is right here, right now, in this one precious body, with this one heart and mind, experiencing this one life with its specific gifts and challenges.


What if there is no escape – and life is still filled with meaning and beauty and possibility anyway?


Spend some time wondering where we would locate the sacred if this was true, how would we treat one another if we carried this awareness with us in the world, what would the implications be for our choices, our emotions, our relationship to life itself?

My sense is that human beings who have spent some time making peace with death are much more grounded, more open to life, and less vulnerable to fantasy-based, destructive or at the very least unskillful and fragmenting spirituality.

10) Contemporary integrated grown-up spirituality can learn from this and move forward.

We really can create a new paradigm. We really can learn from the past and move this spiritual developmental line to a new level /stage. We really can learn from the mistakes and madness of old world religion that still has so much of the planet in its grips, from the failed experiment of the “enlightened guru” trip, from the pseudoscience extreme relativism of the new age zeitgeist that creates a multicultural smorgasbord of the most superficial and superstitious aspects of every tradition and turns it into a narcissistic, materialistic I-am-the-center-of-the-universe mind game.

We can learn from Sai Baba and all the other corrupt gurus, we can learn from the Catholic Church and it’s legacy of pedophile priests and broken, victimized  altar boys. We can learn from the crusades and the inquisition, from sexually repressive, body-hating, dualistic beliefs in every tradition.

We can learn from the understandable pre-scientific confusion of mental illness for prophecy or having a direct line to some supernatural realm. We can learn from the unreasonable projection of the sacred into impossible feats, invisible beings and non-existent realms, and reclaim it instead as being here and now in the world, in ourselves, evidenced by reality, not fantasy.

We can learn about ourselves and our complex layered psyches and the ways in which we even use spirituality to lie to ourselves about what, who and where we are…

And maybe, just maybe, we can stop the madness, sit still, use our powerful capacities for critical thinking and genuine compassion, curiosity and courage, to forge a healthy, grounded, embodied, psychologically aware, practice-based spirituality that is truly healing, nurtures growth and integrates well with what we know about inner and outer reality at this juncture in our marvelous dance across the stage of time and space.

As for Sai Baba – with all the spiritual honesty and compassion in the world I have only one thing to say: good riddance!


About Julian Walker

Julian Walker is the founder of http://www.yogateachergradschool.com/ where he supports new and established yoga teachers in living their dreams through business development. He is a writer who has been teaching yoga since 1994, and co-teaches the Awakened Heart, Embodied Mind Yoga Teacher Training in LA with Hala Khouri.Julian’s writing is featured in the book 21st Century Yoga available on Amazon.com.


93 Responses to “10 Things we can Learn from the Bizarre Case of Sai Baba (A Manifesto On Reality-Based Spiritual Empowerment!)”

  1. luke says:

    lol, “one can have both reason and wonder, both the empathic and deep feeling heart and the rational adult truth, your message is given the lie by your insulting, demeaning and violent tone. give me reasonable, grounded spirituality any day over your brand of supernatural confusion and unintegrated emotional vomit.” -yogijulian, demonstrating the calm, clear, real nature of an adult: intolerant, arrogant, hypocrite.

  2. Swami O says:

    So Julian what you did not cover in your judgement is a man who did not come from royalty, who had tremendous personal power. creates hospitals, universities, orphanges, feed the poor, had many wounded westerners who came for inspiration and love. You see Julian you are just a yoga worm who had no personal power. just another new age dweeb who casts your judgement. Grow up boy/man!!!!

  3. yogijulian says:

    what would be interesting is if you made a case based on the quote for the conclusion you offer afterwards – the two do not appear to be connected…. let me know when you have written an article explaining your position and i will be sure to read it…. so far your argument is incoherent and reactive.

  4. yogijulian says:

    no offense aneke – i am calling supernatural claims and magical powers improbable nonsense. you seemed to be suggesting that you didn't agree when i said no-one had ever had magical powers….

    you may not have used the word "superstition" but i am saying it is a superstitious belief that any one has ever had magical powers or that there is anything supernatural. almost in fact, by definition. 🙂

  5. yogijulian says:

    anneke here is my challenge to you – on what basis do you proposed that there are "truly enlightened ones" in possession of "magical powers" – because you see it is this very premise that even makes possible the belief that sai baba or some other guru might REALLY be one of these truly enlightened ones and therefore have actual magical powers….

    THIS is the superstitious gullible reification of old world mythology (and in our case exotic eastern beliefs) as being literally true – when there is zero evidence of such a thing anywhere….

    it seems many of us drawn to yoga have this soft spot for thinking that somehow we are involved with a tradition with REAL god-realized/enlightened, holy/magical figures somehow at its center – this is PRECISELY the regressive, gullible abdication of critical thinking at the heart of the sai baba story.

    just because you and i didnt believe HE was one of the "real enlightened ones" with real "magical abilities" doesn't mean that we won't believe the next charlatan might be!

    the news is : they are ALL charlatans if the claim anything of the sort because it is simply not true or possible.

    if ever there is one exception to the rule it will be the biggest news in the history of news. think about it, seriously…

    again the challenge – ON WHAT BASIS are you making your claim that there are 'real enlightened ones with magical powers?" do you see that in essence this is the same as any religious claim that REALLY when jesus comes back the rapture will occur, or when the REAL messiah comes to earth then you will see that islam is the true way, or when you die you will see that the church of mormon had it right as you gnash your teeth in hell and watch the true believers rise to heaven….

    in essence all of these are the same kinds of mythic literalist claims based merely on belief or authority or happening to like the vibe of the ideas being expressed.

    what i am proposing is a liberation of authentic spirituality from ANY and ALL of that kind of wrong-headed delusion.

  6. yogijulian says:

    anneke i am deeply sorry if i am coming across as belittling or trying to convert! that is not my position.

    i may be direct in referring to certain IDEAS or BELIEFS as silly – this does not mean i am saying YOU as a PERSON are less valuable!

    your points of disagreement are welcome – YOU are trying to get your point across as am i- where we disagree we each may feel the other is trying to convince us of something….. that is not ":conversion" but a good and honest debate!

    you have chosen one specific point in my article to disagree with – namely that i said no-one has ever had magical powers…… this is very interesting and i am responding with time and energy to your challenge.

    don't get me wrong i appreciate you and your time and energy and interest in the discussion.

    all the best

  7. yogijulian says:

    check the section in which i discuss denial and rationalization nimitta. good works do not make up for lies and criminal behavior. when someone claims to be god and then behaves like a devil, the move of saying ah well no-one is perfect and we shouldnt have put him on a pedestal is a very slippery rationalization and obfuscation of the facts.

  8. yogijulian says:

    and i will repeat what i have said a few times now but heard nothing back – anyone who can demonstrate even one case of genuine magical powers will win the nobel prize – they could also claim the $1M james randi has been offering for several decades…. no one ever has. so can you give me an example of someone with actual magical powers that can be confirmed?

    until then this statement remains true: no-one has ever had magical powers.

  9. yogijulian says:

    anneke dont confuse to issues! 🙂

    let's keep this really neat and clean: just because we don't know everything about the universe doesn't make it anything goes to fill in those gaps!

    does that make sense?

    all of your questions are valid – none of them make supernaturalism more likely. most people in our worldview think they do. but if you really think it through they don't!

    do you get the distinction?

  10. yogijulian says:

    philosophicaly (if you are interested and curious) there are two things you might look up that really helped me to clarify this question:

    1) the fallacious argument referred to as "the god of the gaps" http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/God_of_the_gaps


    2) the understanding of "burden of proof" summed up by carl sagan's famous statement "extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philosophic_burden_o

    just because we don't know for example all the details yet about how the brain produces consciousness does not make it any more likely that it is produced by an invisible siamese twin deity that lives in an invisible realm between raindrops.

    i am being humorous but i hope the example shines through…..if i claim that consciousness is caused by a siamese twin deity who lives in an invisible relam between raindrops then in order for you to believe me i must provide evidence of this extraordinary claim.

    until then you are well within your philosophical integrity to say this is not a true claim.

    if my next move is to say –

    well how do you know?!

    and i start quoting how quantum physics & string theory show that we don't really know anything and going on a rant about how science is reductionist – i still have not gotten any further toward proving my claim BECAUSE the two issues have in actual fact nothing to do with eachother….

    the burden of proof is on me – and i cannot just fill in the GAP i am proposing in scientific knowledge with whatever belief/theory i want without backing it up…

  11. nimitta says:

    "Ah well, no one is perfect."

    Um, do you think that's what I was suggesting? Oh, dear.

  12. NotSoSure says:

    Cut from your post: "because you don't know what censhorship is, what journalism is, nor responsability nor what kind of article can promote understanding".

    That is an ad hominem attack. You do not have the faintest clue about what anyone does or does not know. And you never backed up your assertion as to the "errors" in the article.

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  15. […] 10 Things we can Learn from the Bizarre Case of Sai Baba (A Manifesto On Reality-Based Spiritual Emp… […]

  16. yogijulian says:

    yea i hear you donna. good riddance is less a celebration ( i too was disturbed by the celebration of OBL's death) and more a statement along the lines of – i am glad he won't be molesting any more boys, or fooling any more followers with fake magic tricks…. we don't need gurus like this on the planet in my opinion. i am glad his particular brand of pathological charlatanism is over.

  17. yogijulian says:

    you are a bit confused if you would justify lying about convincing others you are god on earth by doing magic tricks and then molesting their sons by saying "he inspired people!"

    think this through…

    if you do you might wonder if maybe it is not worse to use inspiring messages AND lies to get people in all sincerity to trust you when you are really a cynical hustler and a pedophile.

    think about it.

  18. yogijulian says:

    i think you are suggesting that we have to take the good with the bad.

    this is a form of rationalization in the case of someone who literally claims to be god, passes off fake magic tricks as proof and then molests children…

    there are many philanthropists and indeed many spiritual teachers who commit none of these crimes..

    sai baba was a cynical criminal sociopath. it is not that complicated.

  19. Julian, I am grateful for your clarity and insight on the spiritual journey. I've especially enjoyed your article on the 10 obstacles to sane spirituality.
    Being Indian living in India, and finding a happy balance between the Guru culture and the individual quest has been an interesting journey and promises to continue in that vein. I would have it no other way for myself 🙂 – there is beauty in both and I am fortunate to be able to see it and partake of the gifts of both.
    I will always be grateful for the many gifts (none of them material) that Sai Baba has blessed me with – the most important, for me has been the strength to deal with and accept death – I am 31, but have seen plenty of death at close quarters in my adolescence.

    The grace of the Guru, as I have seen it manifest has got nothing to do with magic, materialisation or money. It is a transformation of the inner being… I have had to face my shadow – there is no running away from it – the Guru does not molly coddle you into complacency… but the Guru does not walk the journey for you either – you have to do it yourself. My experience with Sai Baba has been anything but what you describe here, and I thought I would share that.

    Peace and love.

  20. steven gouws says:

    dear author, i appreciate your strong feelings of needing to protect and make the vulnerable newbie spiritual seekers aware of the pitfalls on the path, as there are many. This is very much needed and personally i thank you for this. i do feel that however if you have never been in the presence of Sai Baba as any follower will attest too, and felt the waves of pure divine love flowing from the man like an overwhelming river of cleansing upliftment and deep divine love, as strong as any physical force, then your right to criticize is somewhat diminished of it's true nature by true experience ( filtered or not).JUDGEMENT in any form is not positive practice, esp when all you will do is invoke a neg response from millions of devotees, as an non added value to the collective consciousness, one needs to consider these things, if your true intent is for positive effect. if so diff wording and communication is needed. To all who have posted here, attacking anothers blindspot or weakness, is attacking, how would unconditional love have treated the others failing( from your point of view, and remember it is your point of view – as is this mine), with healing and love and a feeling for their growth through your best effort to positively contribute to a way of helping to enlighten them, even if they don't agree or accept this. Think of a wound on your body – do you shout at it for giving you pain, or do you treat it as best you can for it to heal. WE ARE ALL ONE , HOW SHALL WE TREAT OUR WOUNDS, WITH ANGER OR WITH LOVE……….. I wish you all love on your path to the moment of your reconnection to the divine source of all pervading love ..

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  24. Good article. And good answer to a commenter with the depth of a summer rain puddle. I am sick to death of people who, when you speak some truth, start blurting out bullshit like "anger issues" and "a chip on your shoulder." Meanwhile, this flake in saffron collected $9bn and was into pedophilia. Sick f#*@

  25. Dr. O. P. Sudrania says:

    Hi Julian,

    Enjoyed reading. Sometimes orthe other a change of taste tells you the taste of your pudding, "How good a cook you are. You certainly are but must get to your neighbour to try his also to discover the difference. When you are a Yoga teacher, I hope you save yourself the trouble of loosing track.

    However, I don't know your dimension, but if you are calling Yoga to Asanas only, then it might help yourself a refresher course. Yoga is far beyond the Asanas. Keep it but do help your own "Self" before it gets rid of our own "Self" without realising it.

  26. […] Sai Baba’s $9B estate and career long preoccupation with molesting young boys in between doing dime store […]

  27. […] Along these lines, some gurus claim to be “avatars” or manifestations of deities come down to earth from the celestial realms. The idea of an avatar has also been popularized as meaning a “world teacher” sent to enlighten us or as “god on earth” as in the case of someone like Sai Baba. […]

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  29. […] The death last year of perhaps the world’s most famous guru, Sai Baba. He called himself a god-man, proved it by doing cheap magic tricks that were exposed by running […]

  30. Ronnie Chanderjith says:

    Hi Julian Walker

    Thank you for your opinion. But it begs the question what have u done for humanity.

    Have u built free hospitals 4 the sick?
    Have u built free schools 4 the poor?
    Have u fed the poor throught the world?
    Have u provided millions with clean drinking water?
    Have u spread your love and given people hope and comfort throughout the world?
    I could go on. If the answer to any of these questions is NO then in your quiet moments reflect on your actions to bring harm to an individual who has given so much to humanity. I prey that Swami removes the darkness within u and fill u light.
    Ronnie Chanderjith

  31. robertpriddy says:

    From the identifiable similarity of content and phrasing, this 'Roger' is without doubt yet another pseudonym for my constant libeler and hyper-active attacker on the Internet, Gerald Joe Moreno. He promotes his website – or gets other to do so – wherever he can make a backlink so as to compete with my postings of Google. Likewise Natasha (see next comment) has appeared on other websites and is most likely his female apprentice troll, Lisa de Witt… Search their names on Google and you can see the extent of their depredations, abuses, false contrivances and ad hominem attacks galore.
    The best was to get a proper overview of Sathya Sai Baba's enormous range of deceptions, abuses of faith and persons, fraudulent 'miracles' and money and power-seeking avidity under the cover of 'serving humanity' and such like mostly empty claims is found, I submit, at http://www.saibaba-x.org.uk/

  32. robertpriddy says:

    This is simply NOT TRUE. The BBC exposed Sathya Sai Baba's sexual abuses and how they were covered up in the 1 hour documentary. The BBC also obtained direct confirmation from the US Embassy in Delhi that the Travel Advisory referring to a guru in Andhra Pradesh was none other than Sathya Sai Baba. Both the BC, the State Department and UNESCO investigated the claims through contacting numerous of those alleging abuses.
    See an overview – with transcripts and brief video clips- from the BBC's 'Secret Swami' at http://www.exbaba.com/comments_on/_the_secret_swa

  33. robertpriddy says:

    An a large number of Indian swamis, gurus and mystics have been exposed as criminals for offenses ranging from multiple murder, rape, sexual molestation – not to mention illegal financial activities. India has since the 1960s increasing spread its bogus mysticism and false prophets to the West for the purpose of making money and gaining influence and power, not least over their own followers. Spirituality has become the happy hunting ground of charlatans and impostors claiming various supernatural powers in trying to batten onto human weaknesses and promote the irrational desire to tear away the veil from the Unseen. This is a red herring trail without end, a labyrinth where there are few who find their way out once having crossed the threshold.See The Dark Side of very prominent Indian Gurus at http://robertpriddy.wordpress.com/2008/05/24/600/

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  35. Anon says:

    Excellent article. Interesting cultists arguments displaying point #3.

  36. Tami says:

    I always spent my half an hour to read this website’s

    posts every day along with a cup of coffee.

  37. Trust me, if a girl is interested she will meet with you. But

    it also has an element of push: you are telling her

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  38. vineeth says:

    I am very happy to read the article and its related comment.and also i am very happy to know that these people who have done incredible thing that make them to criticise SATHYA SAI BABA especially by provide free water felicity for more than 750 million people for more than 15 years, running a hospital which don't have any cash counter for the past 20 years, helping the back wards people by proving free education from LKG to PHD,and also helping the normal people to improve the life style that enable to study the VEDAS. Brothers before critisysing anyone please understand what thy have done to the society and realize what u have done to the society.

  39. Jim Hannon says:

    Great article. Challenging, for sure. We don't want to die–it is our very nature to struggle for survival and our ego is caught up in that. To meditate on our own mortality is powerful and necessary.

    As for Baba, and Osho, and Adi Da or Bubba Free John, or whatever–the author is right on. These men were primarily grifters. Yes, they probably had spiritual beliefs and orientations but they quickly gave way to the most banal of desires. No, it is not a gift to devotes to drive by them in Jaguars and Rolls-Royces to teach them not to be attached to some ideal of spirituality–it's just great fun to have fancy cars. To deny the overwhelming evidence of sexual abuse by Sathya Sai Baba is a sad manifestation of exactly what the author explains. I grew up Irish Catholic in Boston and worked as a layman within the Church and knew at least four priest who have been credibly accused of sexual abuse. It never occurred to me, when I was in my twenties, that any one of them would do what they did. I was naive. Many refused to believe the victims when they first started to speak out. The cognitive dissonance was too great. It took many years for most Catholics to get it and one of the reasons was that the hierarchy covered it up, and transferred protests around in order to protect the reputation (and the wealth) of the institution. Not different from Sathya Sai Baba. But 9 billion dollars? That is some impressive grift. I hope that money is now being used properly. As for the grifter himself? I agree with yogijulian.

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