Sathya Sai Baba Deceptions Exposed

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

Archive for December 24th, 2011

Sathya Sai Baba lacked a true sense of humour and self-irony

Posted by robertpriddy on December 24, 2011

Excerpts from Peggy Mason's naive eulogy

Among the most uncritical of ‘blind’ devotees was Peggy Mason of the UK, ‘who wrote a book (The Embodiment of Love’) and ran a magazine devoted to Sathya Sai Baba. Before she found Sai Baba, she had been deeply involved as a contributor to the fringe magazine in UK called  ‘Psychic News’, which dealt with spirits, ghosts, mediums, spiritualism, contact with the dead… beliefs which she held onto right up to her last days. (My wife and I met her and her husband Ron Laing in their home and later again at a Sai get-together in London). She was always totally accepting of every word Sai Baba ever uttered, and further also repeated rumours about him in her magazine without ever checking their reliability (such as the infamous ‘miracle in the sky’ story).

In her first paragraph she decides that humour is a “divine attribute” (inadvertently she seemed to lend credence to ‘the devil’ as not being the source). Sathya Sai Baba claimed that everything and everyone is divine, so humour must come from divinity – but no mention can the be made of where the countless horrors of the world and humanity arise (other than caused by the sin of ‘man himself’… so one’s understanding is staggered!). Humour, I submit, is one of the ways human beings have managed to counter the ills of the world and make live more livable… despite the vast ills and tortures that the supposed invisible God Creator showers so liberally on mankind. 

The claim that Sai Baba “always uplifts our spirits” is very excessive. In her very few contacts with Sai Baba – considering her complete faith in him – she has felt something of that kind. Yet Sathya Sai Baba certainly did not uplift the spirits of very many people most of the time. Sitting for weeks and months at darshan without any notice from him is not uplifting, as many devotees could relate. This would then be put down to a ‘necessary process of ridding the aspirant of ego’. There is always a pat answer to any critical comment, provided by Sai Baba himself and parroted endlessly by followers to one another. The alleged ‘breath-taking aura’ is sheer subjective imagination, one to which those who are emotionally besotted such as with Sai Baba as being the Cosmic Christ (as was Peggy Mason) are committed. The assertion that Sathya Sai Baba was always in a state of bliss is wholly and entirely dependent on his own word… yet the appearance and behaviour he exhibited in his last years, especially on his 85th birthday until his disappearance behind the secret hospital doors spoke strongly to the contrary. During interviews and hundreds of darsans we never heard Sai Baba laugh outright. even when a couple of persons made jokes when talking to him (He failed to understand what they meant!)… nor did I hear reports of him ever doing so from others. Only a couple of photos show him apparently actually laughing. He would no doubt sometimes raise a laugh about others –  even laugh at people – but I never saw him laugh with anyone, even Kasturi!  

Note that his humor depended mostly on jokes made at the expense of others, ‘hanging people out to dry’ as apparently ignorant and ‘stupid’ (as Mason correctly noted). The way he treated the lady with the japamala is typical of his jibes at others. This is how he manages to raise a laugh… otherwise he was very unfunny, repetitive of the few puns in English he had learned (mostly from Kasturi) He could surely never stand a joke at his expense, for his self-importance was such that no one ever dared even gainsay him. People did become disempowered like children – more like sheep – in his presence due either to the awe in which he was held or to the intense group pressure always present in all Sai Baba connections to conform to the adulation and parrot how loving and amazing he was. One of his cheap jokes was about his so-called Sai VIPs… which he said equally meant ‘vipers’ and ‘very ignorant persons’. .. a very popular jibe with many members of the Organization, however! It also emerged that Sai Baba joked with very close confidantes like Col. Joga Rao about sex. Colonel Joga Rao was given to telling a constant stream of barrack room dirty stories, which V.K. Narasimhan complained to me on occasion, telling of the torture he had to endure when he was forced to share a room with Joga Rao on one occasion while visiting Kodaikanal.

The devoted follower believed that Sai Baba was masterfully “stripping away the ego” of aspiring seekers, making them “as children”. This doctrine of ego-removal is a typical cultish manipulation, the core of creating a docile and cowed following, seen in nearly all cults. As a ‘spiritual doctrine’ it is highly over-rated based in lacking basic insight into constructive psychology and how to help people change themselves. Followers love to talk about the pride, pomposity, envy and other such ‘bad qualities’ in others, and they could be said only to have been  following his shining example in so doing. Sai Baba used criticism to push people away when he had done with them… often permanently. It ‘tested’ the faith of the follower who, if constantly returning for more punishment (and hoping for praise and/or flattery), he knew they were properly indoctrinated (i.e. duped) and could be entrusted to some degree as organizers and officials.

Incidentally, Peggy Mason’s  husband – Ron Laing – was much incensed by the considerable slights and insults he had received from the then International Chairman of the Sathya Sai Organization, Indulal Shah. Ron Laing had been nominated as a member of the board of the International SSO  (See here). As a man of pragmatic spirit with the British sense of fair play and how decision-making should proceed (with consultation, feedback and even democratic input) he had come up against the autocratic (and extremely rude) Indulal Shah, who eventually succeeded in sacking him from the Organization.

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