A pragmatic, truthful account of life and incidents – amusing and otherwise – in the mini-world of Sathya Sai Baba – not censored by Sai officials or authorities! Many visitors from abroad arrive already indoctrinated by stories, books and videos in the hope being helped or healed by Sai Baba (self-proclaimed God Incarnate). Some few appear to get health improvements, but by far the majority get nothing, and one can see many of the same invalids who attend hopefully year after year sitting at the back of the crowds on the stone benches gradually getting worse. They also get an exotic cultural experience and the hope of being healed or helped by the supposed ‘Divine Healer’. Westerners usually arrive with their heads stuffed with all manner of illusions about ‘spirituality’, excited at seeing all the parasitic sannyasins, fakirs, soothsayers, yogis, astrologers, nagas, priests, religious mountebanks and swamis (out of ca. two million wandering mendicants) of whom the vast majority are out-and-out (but often very clever) frauds. One also meets more peculiarly confused, unrealistic and suffering people visiting there from India and abroad than any of the followers ever admit or dare write about.
Many are lazy self-seeking spiritual seekers?Though Sai Baba proclaims that it is futile to stay there if one is not doing service to the needy and suffering, many Westerners who stay there (very often those disillusioned and lost in their own lives and societies) laze about and indulge themselves in doing little or nothing other than follow the daily routines of endless waiting to see Sai Baba (called ‘darshan’) or queue for a room, for information, for food at ashram shops, even for a place in another queue or perhaps for any small free handouts going (note: Sai Baba has received billions of US dollars in donations so ‘holy crumbs’ fall on visitors wanting ‘a blessing from Sai’ too!).
The Divine Show-off The God who says that he alone among all knows that he is God sails by, now in a bizarre motorised silver traditional Indian chariot (a converted jeep!), now in a Mercedes or a Jaguar, now standing majestically in a golden chariot tugged on ropes by rows of serf-like figures… all the while making nonchalant royal gestures with a mostly superior and unconcerned, sometimes apparently bored, gaze. Around him on the hard ground or harder marble flooring (depending on the locale) sit cross-legged devotees who have awaited his appearance for several hours at the least. These are also said by him to be gods, yet gods who are unaware of this fact (even though he tells them) and who are mostly worthless as devotees (in his repeated railings) and who are 90% faithless, sub-human and many of whom he later says are ‘demons’ (those who eventually leave him and criticize him). He tells them to ‘Wait! Wait!’ and motions those who raise onto one knee or to their feet to stay down, down! Like faithful dogs ‘Sit!’ For ‘He’ is God not dog, like you and I!My wife got to know very well a lady who stayed at the ashram while her husband went back to the States and waited about one year every day for Sai Baba even to speak to her, poor soul! If he had not done so he would have looked very bad before everyone who knew her desperate waiting like a sore thumb for so long.
Sai Baba’s Ghostly Mother Roams the World Previously, many were allowed to prostrate themselves at his feet, quite a lot lying full length flat on their faces to kiss them. Sathya Sai quite evidently throve on all this for about 60-odd years, until he decided that it was not the right thing to do. (He also told in a weird public discourse how his long-dead mother had appeared as a wraith and in concern for her son informed him and his bedfellow boys that he was thus in danger of having poison put on his feet. No kidding! Read more about this here