Author: Said Publisher: The NEURAL SURFER Publication date: September 1997
E-mail David Christopher Lane directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
I want to go back to the home base now.
From email@example.com Sat Aug 30 14:12:31 1997 Hello Professor Lane. I am responding to a recent post. I feel that = there are too many generalizations in this gentleman's post and it has = to be cleared. Thanks David's post are placed in two opening and closing paranthesis. ((Dear Mr. Lane: I would like to make a few comments addressing the various question = brought forth by the postings on your web site about Shri Sathya Sai Baba. = Ordinarily I would not write this email, since I believe it is virtually impossible = to change somebody's mind once he is convinced of something and it is often pointless to go back and forth with arguments and counter-arguments. = However, since you graciously post dissenting views along with your own at your = site, my mail may help others who read your postings and have not already made = up their minds. So I would appreciate it very much if you could post this = (if you find it worthy) along with other postings in your 'Sai Baba = debates'.)) On the same token, since its hard to change someone's mind, I am not = going to try to do so, I'll just try to clear the misconceptions. ((Let me state at the outset that I am not a 'rabid' Sai devotee (if you = can call these gentle folk that). I do have faith in his avatarhood and I = have visited his ashram (for 4 days) while I was in India for other reasons. = I am not a member of any Sai group and have not attended any of their = meetings, bhajans etc. My explanations about the nature of Sai Baba is offered = without any 'proof', these explanations you can read and accept if you find reasonable, reject if not.)) Four days is a very short time to give an opinion about Sai Baba. = Furthermore, you are not associating with the Organization and their = events. What do you know about Sai Baba? How did you come to believe = that he is an avatar? ((- Is he the head of a cult ? Yes and No. It is a cult in the sense it has a charismatic leader (but = so did Christianity i.e.Jesus). It is not a cult in the sense there is nothing = to join, no dues to be paid, no specific rules to be followed (except may = be when you stay at the ashram and even these are very reasonable), no = courses to be attended (or paid for) and no initiations to be taken (or paid = for).)) Very clearly you haven't been attending the meetings of Sai Baba's = Organization. Baba clearly asks people to follow nine codes of conduct = at all times. There are some activities costing in hundreds of dollars = which are printed in the quarterly magazine of Sai Organization of = America. And wouldn't you agree that if a cult starts somewhere and the = leader decides that - for publicity - he will not ask for money, then = the fact that he is not asking for money is good publicity for him and = will bring him many followers and most probably money too. When Sai = Baba doesn't ask for money, people think that he is not interested in = money. When people see that he is doing some charity work, people give = them some money thinking that since he is not interested in money, he = will spend it wisely. Do you disagree? So, just because Baba doesn't = ask for money, it doesn't mean that he is not interested in it. And = just because there is no initiation involved - meaning no one will be = turned away - works to Baba's benefit, don't you agree? By the way, I = have seen Baba's authorities throw out - upon arrival -- a 19 or 20 year = old hippie boy because of his looks. Don't you think that this person = could have benefited from God Baba's mission here on earth? Why does = Baba not let some stay in his ashram and at the same time say that all = are welcome to him and that all are his children? ((The ashram is probably the cheapest place to take a vacation (room = rate as I recall, is less than $2) and nobody will bother you if you don't bother = them.)) Two dollars is a lot of money for Indian. He is ripping them off. If = he wanted to raise the rent to $10, only the wealthy of India would be = able to visit Baba and that's not good for publicity, is it? ((You don't even have to attend any of the activities. Nobody will pay = you any attention, and definitely no attempt is made to indoctrinate or = 'brain-wash' you.)) How do you know that no attempt is made to brain wash you? You were = only there for 4 days and you don't go to the Organization's meetings. = How can you be sure? Baba is the ultimate mind expert and politician. = The same way that he doesn't ask for money just to get people's money, = he uses psychology to get your mind. Read my previous posting on how = Baba ignores people so that people desire to talk to him more. ((- Does he rub vibhuti on boys genitals (or to use Mr. Lane's elegant = phrase - rub their woodys) ? Apparently, according to the two postings on your site, he does. He also = rubs vibhuti on devotees foreheads, throat and chest (read a non-devotee's experience in 'Empire of the Soul' by Paul W. Roberts). Serious students = of Indian philosophy (or even casual ones) will recognize that these are = the locations of energy centers in the body, the so-called chakras (I know, = I know Mr. Lane, nobody has seen these chakras and 'proven' their = existence, but humour me for now). The lowest 'muladhara' or the root chakra is = just behind the testicles in the male. This is the seat of our animal nature = - survival and procreation (i.e. sex. The second chakra below the navel is = also related to sex). Apparently these two individuals had some problem in = this area.)) You are making a great mistake here. First of all, Baba rubs "oil" in = an area "behind" the testicles of boys. I got the same treatment. He = rubs the oil behind the testicle and doesn't do anything with the = testicle. This ritual has been a part of Hinduism for God knows how = long. It has nothing to do with rubbing something on the dick. = Secondly, the dick is not a chakra area either. Third, why did Baba = have to touch my dick? Fourth, why did Baba have to hug me while doing = so? Fifth, why did he make sexual noises? Sixth, why did he breath = harder? Seventh, why did he make me touch his private area? Eighth, = why did he make sexual sounds while directing me to touch him? I think = if you put two and two together you will see that most probably he is = GAY. ((But what about the fact that they felt molested ? We can understand = this using an analogy: Doctors (practicing western medicine) will often = examine)) Excuse me to cut in. I studied philosophy and took some 5 or 6 classes = on logic. Your analogy is a fallacy. You try to compare Baba with a = doctor as if for sure Baba has pure intentions while touching us. Are = you sure his intentions where pure? If yes, please answer my questions = above, like, why did he make sexual noises? ((their patients while they (the patients) are completely disrobed. = During this, they may (mock horror!) even stick their fingers into various = orifices. It is not uncommon for high strung or emotionally immature patients = (usually women) to accuse the doctor of molesting them.)) Thanks Dave, thanks a lot. First say we are "emotionally immature = patients" then compare or connect us to women. Why not compare Sai Baba = to a Catholic Priest who molests boys instead of making a Doctor out of = him? (( These individuals are not lying, they truly feel they have been taken = advantage of (No doubt the kind Mr. Lane would give them all a sympathetic hearing). Of course, there = are also some doctors who do take advantage of their patients. So it is not surprising that a few persons would misinterpret Sai Baba's actions.)) Considering the fact that you saw him for only 4 days and most probably = didn't have a private interview, you must be the one misinterpreting = Baba. (( But for a person with literally millions of followers, Sai Baba has = very few disaffected ex-devotees (hundreds of students have graduated from his school). )) If you read Jed's accounts you will see that some of his students accuse = him of molesting them or their classmates. However, since the whole = family are devotees, out of respect - Indian tradition - they are not = coming out to the open. But they will. Read Tal Brook's book "Lord of = the Air" or contact Mr. Premananda of Indian Skeptics for books on = people who have come out. ((Vibhuti, by the way, is ash left over after burning incense - nothing = to do with cow dung.Hindus (over 600 million of them) have been putting = vibhuti from their temples on their foreheads for thousands of years, long = before there was a Sai Baba. I don't mean to accuse anyone of ethnic = insensitivity, but I would have expected better from someone who teaches at the = university level.)) One thing is for sure, Baba is not creating this ash from no where! He = has been cut in two movies, with at least 5 shots of him cheating on = creating vhibutti. There goes his claim that he is creating them from = no where through his will. Don't you agree that if that is the case, = then he is lying? ((- Does he teach anything strange or weird ? Sai Baba has not 'written' any books but there are many books available = of his discourses. His basic message seems to be to encourage his followers = to be of service to others. Nobody has pointed out anything remotely objectionable in his teachings (Mr. Lane, surely his message should = merit some mention in your opinion of him, or are all your lectures at the university based on gossip and innuendo rather than serious study ?). )) Wrong again, Sai Baba has written a few books. The reason why Professor = Lane has not brought up his teachings is because he is too smart for = that. After years of seeing evangelists taking people's money by ONLY = talking, he will not fall for a Indian with a 'fro. Baba himself says = that talk is cheap, so we are looking at his character through his = actions, namely molestation, cheating, lying, etc. ((- Is Sai Baba Omnipresent ? Not exactly, he is not present everywhere at once. But his consciousness = can be present in several places at once. So you can call him (or to use a = new age phrase, invoke his presence) so that he can be aware of your current situation (especially if you are a devotee and have a unique connection = to him). He does keep close tabs on everyone and everything at his ashram)) Wait a minute, if you accept that Sai Baba is an avatar, then you must = accept that he is omnipresent. After all, an avatar is God in human = form. Bon would argue that our understanding of omnipresent is wrong, = that it doesn't mean knowing everything. But all religions say that God = knows everything. In my opinion, if God doesn't know everything, he is = imperfect, agree? I remember that as a devotee, I had to change my = ideas of omnipresence and omniscience because I found some short comings = in Baba. In order to not lose faith in him, I changed my ideas. =20 ((- Is he Omniscient ? Again not exactly, all the knowledge of this world and its past, is not present in his brain.)) In Sai Baba's monthly magazine, Sanathana Sarathi, there was an essay = that discussed how Baba fulfills the prophecies of Prophet Mohammed = regarding the chosen one that will come to save the world. One of the = sayings of the Prophet as was printed in Baba's magazine - with his = permission of course - was that all the knowledge of the world, past, = present and future will be in the chosen one's head. So I figure Baba = claims to be omniscient, omnipresent, etc. don't you agree? (( However, he can access this information (about past history as well, from the hall of records - another eastern myth). He = can read your mind and so has access to your memory. He may even be misled = by any false memory you have or by incorrect information from a person who = believes it to be true, unless he bothers to check it with other sources. All = this does require some effort on his part, though perhaps insignificant for = him.)) So, he is not an avatar and he is lying to everyone by saying he is. In = my opinion, he is a black magician. He himself believes in black = magicians because once he told a story that involved a black magician. = Don't you agree that if he is not God, but he claims to be God then he = might be a black magician. He might be able to do great magical things, = but I know for a fact that he fails at times. So, don't you agree that = he might be a black magician in that case? ((- Is he Omnipotent ? No. As the Hindus say, even Brahma has to work within the Laws of Karma = and so does Sai Baba.)) Baba says otherwise. He says that he can do anything. He says that if = he wants he can turn the sky to earth and the earth to sky. He says = that however, he has to respect the Laws of Karma and not show his = power. That is the only limitation the law of karma supposedly has on = avatars. Its not that the law of karma will block the powers of God or = avatar. It can't, its just that the avatar will not disturb it. So, if = you see a short coming in Baba, its not because of the law of karma. = If he wrongly tells of your past, then he is imperfect. (( He may be able to delay or accelerate your karma or help you face it, but not eliminate it or change it. (This may explain why he = can give a rich man a gold ring, only of sentimental value to him; but not = to a poor person - it would just add to his karmic burden). )) Instead of giving expensive jewlery to the rich, I suggest that he give = a dose of love. After all, his devotees claim that once in a while Baba = gives them this dose of love or emotions of love that makes them feel = very good - as a devotee I had some myself, but now think that it was = all a play of my own mind and that Baba had nothing to do with it. = Wouldn't that be better in order to change the rich person's mind and = capture his heart? ((- Does he have supernatural powers ? As the theosophist says, there are no supernatural acts, only natural = ones we do not yet understand. Or as Jesus said, "even greater things than these = [the miracles I have done] will you do". He is capable of producing items seemingly out of thin air. He claims he does this by his 'sankalpa' (act = of will). There are many anecdotes of this as well as a few reports of = fraud (many more of the former).)) Unfortuantley, many people are fooled by magicians. And even more = unfortunate is that Baba does not allow cameras of any kind in his = compound anymore. So, you cannot catch him cheating on tape anymore. = However, I have seen him cheat on three different movies. Just because = many people claim to his miracles, does not make him a miracle man. = Look at "God Lives In India" and tell me if you believe the millions = who believe that he is doing miracles or the few who believe he is a = cheat. (( But I prefer to ignore them both, these are mainly to attract people who look for miracles rather the message. Again these = acts require some effort on his part. (Note that none of his 'miracles' true = or false require any payment))) You are truly fooling yourself Dave. If the guy says that he is = performing miracles due to his will, and if he gets caught cheating, = then he was lying to everyone. Why can't you compare Baba to the = Evangelists for a minute just to see if they compare. I am not asking = you to compare him to the Evangelists for ever, just do it and compare = and then think about Baba as you want. Honestly, isn't he doing exactly = the same thing? Everything is the same between them except that Baba = doesn't ask for money, which in my opinion is a new, more pure "looking" = way of Evangelism. ((- If not by miracles, why am I impressed ? As I said earlier, his message is simple and beautiful (almost naive for = this material world). Also, when you are in his presence (I did not have a = private interview so was at least 25 feet from him), a curious peacefulness = comes over you (not excitement at all). This feeling wears off, if you visit = him daily on consecutive days. I have been told that this is because your consciousness is already at a higher level as the days pass.)) God help us if higher consciousness means that I will become like Bon = and so many Baba devotees that I have seen. Or does the feeling wear = off because you get used to being around Baba - God, superhuman, someone = special? ((- Is he God ? I am afraid not (sorry to disappoint Sai devotees). But he is pretty = close, I believe he is an Avatar. His position on earth is explained in my = webpage ( http://members.aol.com/dngude/worldorg.htm - this site will no doubt, establish my credentials as a certifiable 'kook'). - Will following him make you happier ? Perhaps, but very likely not. For the following reasons: 1. If your former friends do not like your new association with an = Indian Guru, you feel socially isolated. If your own family resents it then you = are in real trouble. 2. After you have been on the spiritual path for a few years, all your repressed emotions, anger, resentment, repressed sexuality comes to the fore. = These inner demons have to be conquered before you can progress much further. = 3. When you come into contact with an Avatar, your personal karma is = often accelerated (perhaps because you can tolerate more pain with his help). However, following him can put you on the Path for eventual = self-realization, so all this may be worth it. All the information above is my current understanding of the 'truth'. It = is offered 'as is' without any warranties. Fallibility is the human = condition whatever the Pope may think.)) Thanks for being honest about your opinions. Thanks for accepting that = they are opinions after all. Bon on the other hand would tell us his = opinions as if fact and scorch us saying we have too many opinions. = Unfortuatelly, he used to throw out my fact - three movies - as movies = not having any value like Independence Day. I appreciate your honesty. ((As for the two individuals: I am sorry that they feel violated or = molested. >From their postings, they appear disturbed persons. I urge seeking a qualified therapist and undergoing counseling (I have my Ann Landers hat = on now). There is always the danger of psychological breakdown or worse.)) Unfortunately, I haven't had the luxury of a therapist. I'll do so AS = SOON AS I make some more money. ((Thank you Mr. Lane for your indulgence. Regards,=20 Dave (firstname.lastname@example.org)))
E-mail The Neural Surfer directly at email@example.com
I want to go back to the home base now.