Sathya Sai Baba Deceptions Exposed

Exposing major deceits by guru Sathya Sai Baba in India, incl. murders cover-up & widely alleged sexual abuse


Posted by robertpriddy on June 1, 2007

Why do foreigners visit Sai Baba’s ashrams?
Apart from tourists who go to see but not understand, spiritual seekers go in the hope that being near to the self-proclaimed avatar will confer boons and blessing, there are other attractions of visiting an Indian ashram. One is the great change of culture, climate, food habits etc. involved (until it becomes too familiar). There is often (not always) a lack of hurry and stress. Life there is still more communal and closer to pre-industrialized life. It can be also a relief to be cut off from the wider world, its media bad TV and bad news, something many Western adults have not experienced for decades! Part of it all is simply the closer encounter with the country and its inhabitants than mere conducted or standard tourism can offer, stimulating to those who have not crossed cultural boundaries much before. Despite the vast material and social problems India faces – like child slavery, bonded labour, infanticide, zero health care for millions, destitution, religious pogroms, wife burning and much more – in many respects just as bad as they were when India gained Independence – one still sees smiling, happy faces among many ‘ordinary’ Indians (i.e. the poor). That always impresses foreigners!

Sathya Sai’s declares one task to be to improve society through transformation of individuals and this means he must allow all kinds of person to come there, not only those who act well and for the good. Well, there are plenty of crooks around him… he even allows some of them privileged status as VIPs – to sit on his veranda – such as the man who runs a prostitution service from his ayurvedic clinic in Puttaparthi (see here under Prostitution in Puttaparthi!

Embezzlement, corruption and worse
Many of his servitors have embezzled funds (e.g. members he put on the Sathya Sai Central Trust like Col. Joga Rao, Narayanen, Mr. Nataraj and he retains them for ages – until it becomes too widely known, when he finally throws them out. Sai gives interviews both to known criminals in India and accepts their money (such as Bhangarappa, a known corrupt Karnataka politician and Mr. Reddy, the Madras ‘liquor baron’ who was murdered shortly afterwards) but also to foreign leaders who were major criminals (e.g. , Bettino Craxi, former President of Italy). Sai Baba also emphasizes that physical proximity is no guarantee of a person’s character and nor is long residence in the ashram either. He has even stated when cornered about the behaviour of some servitors that some are ‘demons’ who he keeps close to him so they can do less damage!

The leap in the cost of ashram living
Decades ago, there were few charges for staying there, but no longer. The prices of hiring rooms have multiplied perhaps a hundredfold and so has the price of a small bare 1-room-plus-bathroom ‘donor’s ashram apartment’ (now around US $ 10,000.- which one must pay in full yet oneself can only occupy for one month per year!). Westerners who bought most of those constructed are now given a back seat in all ways to the advantage of the crowds of Indians now arriving in hordes by bus and train. Many former long-term residents have had to leave due to worsening conditions, and all without any recompense. No foreigner has ever been allowed any papers guaranteeing ownership of ‘donated apartments’ in the ashrams and have to relinquish all legal rights vis-à-vis the ashram.

The tricky ‘tests of faith’ – or catch 22
Visitors to Sai Baba’s ashrams have to face many problems, which they soon learn to take as ‘tests of faith’. If you do not get a place anywhere near Sai Baba at the twice daily ‘darshans’ where he struts his stuff before the assembled thousands, it is because ‘Swami is not pleased with you’ or ‘Swami is testing you to see if you have patience’ or ‘Swami is thinking you will go away soon, so please stay!’… or many another such inane delusion. If a bird drops it’s dropping on you, that is significant… but then, what does it actually MEAN? You are free to guess, but always remain aware that Swami Himself is in everything and everyone, so he knows that the bird did its thing on just you then! Take it as a lesson, as a spiritual penance to be tolerated in the spirit of divine wisdom! Yes, this is the kind of thing one has to listen to daily from devotees, for virtually ALL of them you will meet there think like this at one time or other, you can take it from me! You will frequently hear residents repeating Sai Baba’s claim: “Swami is the Doer of everything! Not a blade of grass moves without Him knowing!”

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