Kirpal Singh's Ego and Infinity

Author: David Christopher Lane
Publisher: The NEURAL SURFER
Publication date: April 1998

E-mail David Christopher Lane directly at

I want to go back to the home base now.

Part Five:

According to detailed accounts by Dr. Pierre Schmidt and Lala Munshi Ram,
as well as supporting statements by Charan Singh, on March 20, 1948, Baba
Sawan Singh, in full possession of his senses and with no pressure, signed
a will naming Jagat Singh as his spiritual successor, in the presence of
these and several other persons, including Jagat Singh himself.  According
to Daryai Lal Kapur, Sawan Singh had given verbal authorization to Jagat
Singh that very day.  Charan Singh says, "We had great respect for Sardar
Bahadur and we knew he was the successor--the will was executed in my
presence, I am a witness to the will--and the Great Master himself had told
us many things about Sardar Bahadur and instructed us: "You should respect
him and take him in my place."49 [Spiritual Heritage.  (from tape-recorded
talks)  Maharaj Charan Singh.  RS Satsang Beas.   p. 231]
     Despite the vivid and detailed accounts, Kirpal Singh's associates
question the veracity of the will.  They also question the circumstances of
its signing as well as the secrecy which surrounds the document itself. The
original, it is claimed, has never been seen.  Versions of the will found
in several Beas books are never facsimile copies, but merely typed


Why don't you simply ask for a copy, Neil?

You banter here and there about not seeing the original.

There is a really easy way out of this impasse:

Contact Gurinder Singh directly and say you want to see a photostat
of the original Will (which was notarized and verified as authentic
in court, by the way).

While you are at it Neil, why don't you see if you can get
photostats of Kirpal Singh's last Will mentioning Darshan Singh
and also copies of Sawan Singh's diary where he allegedly talks
about being poisoned.

I like your skepticism of these things; I just wish it were more
consistently applied. 

By the way, I know you realize what you are implying about the
"forging" of the will.

Jagat Singh and Charan Singh would be liars.

Why not just say it, since that is what you are implying?

Moreover, Dr. Schmidt is a liar too, given your scenario.

Indeed, we got a whole pack of liars at the Dera and to top it off
we got the guru who ALLOWS 90% of his sangat (the very group he
loved so dearly?) to be COMPLETELY MISLED.

These are the implications and they don't shine a nice light either
on Kirpal Singh or least of all Sawan Singh....


TESSLER writes:

      Malik Radha Krishna Khanna, the attorney who played a major role in
drafting earlier legal documents for Hazur, including several of his wills,
was not present at the Dera at the time of the will signing. 



Was Khanna involved in the earlier Will where Sawan Singh stated
univocally that he would appoint his spiritual successor BY A WILL?

Go do some research on this, Neil.

You may be surprised by what that earlier will states and who was
involved in it.


TESSLER writes:

He had been
sent for and replied that he would arrive on the twenty third of March.
According to Pita Poot, on Khanna's arrival at Dera, Kirpal Singh told him
that he had been called to write a will and suggested he ask as to whether
the will was written or not.  Khanna inquired repeatedly about the will but
was neither shown the document or told anything about it.  He left the Dera
before the satsang of Sunday, the 28th of March.
      In the accounts by Pierre Schmidt and Munshi Ram of the will signing,
we are told that Baba Sawan Singh sat up and carefully read and signed the
document unaided.  This may not be the whole story, but rather an idealized
rendering.  It has been often stated that in the last weeks of Baba Sawan
Singh's life, he was too weak to hold a pen.  Apparently, many important
documents went unsigned for this reason.  Bibi Lajo, one of the closest
personal attendants of Hazur, was emphatic on this point, according to her
close aide, Raj Kumari Rujpat.



Which is another way of saying that you are suspicious of the Will.

Why? Because it point blank contradicts your own guru's testimony,

Then, if you are "doubtful" of this Will, why not try to secure a
copy of it?

Moreover, you unquestionably accept Kirpal's testimony (never
showing even the slightest doubt in it), but always consistently
"doubt" the Beas version.

Okay, now take that same skeptical approach and apply to Kirpal's

Then I would be impressed.

Instead you elevate hearsay to facts and then deflate facts to
hearsay, even though the latter has documentation whereas the former
is without documented merit.

I like your skepticism. I think it is altogether healthy.

But try using it where it is most needed:

On YOUR own guru.

In either case (pro Beas or anti Beas), I can tell you this whole
episode gets MORE and MORE mundane and human the CLOSER you look.

Where you see a Divine imperative (with a decidely strange
conspiracy twist), I see merely the jockeying of a would-be guru
(Kirpal Singh) who doesn't have the evidence to support his fledging
campaign and who must resort to rumors, to stories, to
self-proclamations to buttress his candidacy.

Okay, but does the ego have any limits in this arena or is everybody
suspect who is anti-Kirpal?

As for R.K. Khanna, isn't he the same guy who said he would make up a Will for
Madam Hardevi simply because she asked for one (go read EMERGENCE OF
THE NEW MASTER by Malcolm Tillis for more on this "neutral" lawyer).
The same woman who by the way appointed Thakar Singh.

Do any of these guys have ethics?


TESSLER writes:

     There is at least some objective evidence for this:  In the book
Glimpses of the Great Master, a photographic essay on the life of Hazur
Baba Sawan Singh, there are several interesting pictures on page 199.
These outdoor photographs show Dr. Schmidt holding up the end of a pen as a
very frail looking Baba Sawan Singh, signs his name to a blank sheet of
Dera Beas letterhead, while gripping the side of the table with his other
hand, seemingly to steady himself.



Why don't you simply spell out your implications:

Sawan Singh was "duped" into signing the Will?

Sawan Singh didn't sign the Will?

Sawan Singh surrounded himself with liars and cheats?

Your implications are obvious, but your facts are not.

Instead of relying on hearsay, why not give us some hard evidence
besides "Kirpal Singh" says or so and so believes.

What you cannot get past is the obvious:

TWO WILLS, each signed by Sawan Singh, mentioning Jagat Singh and
stating UNIVOCALLY that he was appointing his Spiritual Successor
by a Will.


Because just maybe (doubt Kirpal for a second here, Neil) he wanted
to "lessen" (not increase) confusion.

If you accept Kirpal's version of events, then CONFUSION is the
status quo and Sawan Singh is that most wondrous of gurus:

a chumpy asshole who is willing to MISLEAD 90% of his sangat just
because he wants to keep the "property" in tact.

I see humanness and you see divinity.

How "divine" is it to MISLEAD 90% of your following?

Hmm, some hidden purpose, some hidden meaning, some hidden

Nope, just plain and simple human politics (either way).


TESSLER writes:

     Bibi Lajo had a very different version of the will signing that
completely contradicts Beas's official accounts.  According to Mrs. Rajput,
Bibi Lajo's aide throughout the majority of her years after the passing of
Hazur, Bibi Lajo was present when the will was "signed," and that Baba
Sawan Singh was not conscious but that rather a pen was put in his hand and
guided to sign the document.  In none of the official Beas accounts is Bibi
Lajo's presence at the signing mentioned, though this is consistent with
the fact that she is not mentioned in any English Beas publications
discussing Beas history.  However, since she was in constant attendance
upon Hazur throughout this period, she could well have been present.



"Could WELL have been present"?

What kind of history is this Neil?

WE already know WHO WAS PRESENT and they CONTRADICT the one person
who you claim "could well have been present".....

Geez, with this modus operandi to critical history, then anything
could be possible.

Maybe "Elvis could WELL have been present"--though we have no
fudging evidence to support it.

Again, just look at your implications and say what you really want
to say:

Charan is lying.
Schmidt is lying.
Jagat is lying.

Indeed, the whole inner circle (outside of those who support Kirpal)
are lying.

Gosh, Sawan attracts liars and cheats....

Better yet, he himself lies and cheats since he lets 90% of his
sangat follow imposters.....


Because the chump didn't have the balls to simply tell his corrupt
inner circle the truth......

Re-read what you are writing Neil.

Your "mystical" bent is nothing of the sort:

It is pettiness writ large.... 

And who is the pettiest of them (according to your version)?

Sawan Singh.


Because he does not have the power or the foresight to stop a
complete fiction.

And, you know, what good is a guru if he can't "save" 90% of his
flock from following an imposter?

Or, is property that important?

Naturally, I have a much different take.

Sawan Singh appointed Jagat Singh precisely because he WANTED to

Kirpal's version simply CREATES it.


TESSLER writes:

       According to Pita Poot and Truth Triumphant, on the 27th of March
there was a meeting of about seven members of the Dera management committee
including Kirpal Singh and S.B. Jagat Singh.  Jagat Singh left immediately
upon conclusion of the meeting.  Shortly after this Bibi Ralli came to the
meeting room and stated that an announcement was to be made by Kirpal Singh
after the satsang the next day.  Kirpal Singh inquired from Bibi Ralli as
well as Munshi Ram, Dera secretary, as to what it was that must be
declared.  Munshi Ram stated that S.B. Jagat Singh had been chosen as
Hazur's successor and  since Kirpal Singh was in charge of the satsang he
should declare it to the sangat.  As the signing of the will had not
officially been revealed to anyone, the management committee members
expressed surprise and insisted that Hazur should somehow make the
announcement himself by using a microphone to address the sangat from his
room.  Kirpal Singh agreed, saying that since Hazur was still with them, if
such an announcement were deemed necessary, Hazur should do so himself.
     Kirpal Singh and Munshi Ram then went to the residence of Hazur, where
a discussion ensued in the room next to the Master.  Jagat Singh, Sardar
Harbans Singh (son of Sawan Singh), Purshottam Singh (grandson), Radha
Krishna Khanna, and Dr. Pierre Schmidt were present.  Dr. Schmidt said to
Kirpal Singh that since he was in charge of the satsang, whatever Hazur had
done, he should announce it.  Kirpal Singh replied that the announcement
could be made by a personage who was told about this, or else Hazur could
order him to do it, however, since he had no personal knowledge of this
order he would not announce it.
     Despite Kirpal Singh's objections Munshi Ram and others continued to
insist that he should make the announcement.  Kirpal Singh stated that the
only thing he would say to the sangat was that some instructions were there
but that he had no firsthand knowledge of it.   He said to Dr. Schmidt that
he must have seen the will, and must be familiar with its contents.  The
Doctor replied that he was sorry but that he could not say anything about
it, adding that he was under an oath.
     The version of these events found in the Urdu account by Munshi Ram,
as translated by Daryai Lal Kapur for his book, Heaven on Earth, puts a
different spin on the same information and offers a somewhat different
account of the events;
      "On Saturday night Bibi Ralli, Sardar Bachint Singh, and I felt that
since Huzur had appointed Sardar Bahadur Jagat Singh as his successor and
made a will to that effect, and as this news had reached all the prominent
satsangis, it would therefore be better to inform the sangat about this on
the next day--Sunday--at the monthly satsang.  We called Malik Radha Kishan
and Sardar Kirpal Singh into the office room so that we could confer with
them too.  We suggested that the next day at the end of the discourse,
Sardar Kirpal Singh should announce to the sangat that Huzur had appointed
Sardar Bahadur Jagat Singh as his successor by a will.  But Malik Radha
Kishan and Sardar Kirpal Singh objected to this, saying that on hearing
this announcement the sangat would be in tears; only this much should be
declared--that Huzur has appointed his successor. So the next day, Sardar
Kirpal Singh made that announcement at the end of the satsang."50
[Translated from the original Urdu version of With the Three Masters.
Heaven on Earth.  Ibid.  pp. 208-209]
      Daryai Lal Kapur's comments follow:
    "Although Sardar Bahadur Jagat Singh's name was withheld in the
announcement, the sangat came to know the name of the successor chosen by
Huzur, and within a few hours his name was on every satsangi's lips."






     The differences between these two versions of the same event are
worthy of a closer examination.  According to Kirpal Singh's associates, he
was reluctant to make an announcement of Jagat Singh's succession, as
requested by the administrators and family, as he had no firsthand
knowledge about it; he was not shown the will and had no confirmation from
Hazur.  In fact, to make such a serious announcement without direct
instructions from Hazur, would have amounted to passing along hearsay.



Glad to know that you are at least familiar with "hearsay."

Kirpal's version, more or less, is precisely that:

Hearsay elevated as facts.

Don't get me wrong. I like the different twist.

I just wish you were as skeptical of Kirpal as you were of the Dera.

Then we might be on to something here.

As it is, we are simply getting a long defense of Kirpal's version,
filled with hearsay and filled with very little substantiation.

Remember, every time the Dera gives a version you doubt it and look
at it suspiciously.

Yet, every time you hear Kirpal's version you take it as Gospel.

Lest you accuse me of the same thing,

I think both versions reveal HUMANNESS, not divinity (though the 
Beas version clearly lessens CONFUSION whereas Kirpal's version
INCREASES it exponentially).

The guru narrative as "relieving" stress or increasing Chaos?


TESSLER writes:

     On the other hand, according to Munshi Ram's version, Kirpal Singh
disputes the assignment on entirely different grounds, using a weak excuse
to avoid the administrator's request.  According to Munshi Ram,  Kirpal
Singh was reluctant to announce Jagat Singh's name since "the sangat would
be in tears." Yet, on the other hand, he is willing to state that a
successor had been appointed.  Announcing that there was a successor, named
or not, would be a clear signal of Hazur's imminent demise, a certain cause
for grief.  The logic is hard to follow that naming the successor could
evoke the sangat's grief, but that stating there was a successor without
naming him would not cause grief.  In plain terms, it doesn't make sense.
It is very hard to believe that this illogical excuse was advanced by
either Kirpal Singh or Radha Krishna Khanna.  A more plausible explanation
is that this phrasing was chosen to make it appear that Kirpal Singh was
anxious to suppress the information.  This may well be another instance
where Beas authorities sought to discredit Kirpal Singh, examples of which
we have already seen and will see again.



Now this is a point that actually might have some merit.

I do think that Beas has a bad tendency of trying to "re-edit"
history and I think you may be on to something here, Neil.

I like it, but it doesn't support Kirpal's candidacy; it merely
shows that Beas may have "redacted" some important variances to
discredit Kirpal.

This is a fruitful line of inquiry here, Neil, since you are
showing how history can be altered by the "victors."

Dig into this deeper.


TESSLER writes:

     Perhaps making the announcement while Hazur was still alive was meant
to give Jagat Singh's succession added credibility, though Hazur was well
removed from all these discussions and events.  (There is not the slightest
indication that he was consulted by those promoting the announcement of the
succession).  Perhaps Jagat Singh's supporters insisted that Kirpal Singh
make the announcement  because of his credibility with the sangat, not well
remembered by posterity, but supported by numerous testimonies and
suggested here.



Yes, very good line of thinking here, Neil.

Seems quite plausible.


TESSLER writes:

     According to Pita Poot, later the same evening, Radha Krishna Khanna
and Sardar Bachint Singh went to the residence of Kirpal Singh to inquire
as to his welfare.  With great sorrow, Kirpal Singh replied that people
were after the gaddi (the guruship), but that the wife was crying for the
life of her husband.



Oh that vaulted humility of Kirpal again. Watch his words closely:

He rips the sangat while elevating himself once again.

Nice ploy but there is nothing humble about it.

Again, such humanness.... or this a Divine trait as well?


TESSLER writes:

     According to Mrs. Rajput, sometime after the management committee
meeting of Saturday the 27th, where Jagat Singh's nomination was first
announced, Bibi Lajo spoke with Baba Sawan Singh about the matter of
succession.  She had not only been thoroughly convinced that Kirpal Singh
was the successor, but some days before, seeing how things were going,  had
hoped to have the satsang ghar of Amritsar taken out of Dera's ownership
and put back in her family name (her in-laws had donated the property), in
anticipation of Kirpal Singh's departure from Beas.  She had hoped to
donate it to Kirpal Singh's mission at the appropriate time.51 Possibly due
to Baba Sawan Singh's health she was unable to press the matter.  However,
after the management meeting she decided to have a direct talk with Hazur.
[51 - See Treasure Beyond Measure.  Ibid.  P. 67-69  for an intriguing
version of this event.  In brief, Charan Singh, an attorney, then about 31,
is told that "one of the sevardanis (lady sevadars)" (Bibi Lajo's name is
not mentioned) was attempting to have the ownership of the Amritsar Satsang
ghar transferred to herself as a reward "for her devoted service to the
Great Master."  Charan Singh becomes extremely upset and confused and,
apparently unwilling to speak to her directly, decides to pick her pocket in
the dead of night in order to confirm the document's existence.  He read
the document and then slipped it back in her pocket.  As a result of all
this, "he was very miserable," unable to decide if it was really any of his
business whether the Master chose to sign it or not, yet concerned that it
would be obtained by fraud.  After hours of worrying over the matter, he
went to Baba Sawan Singh later the same day.  Before Charan Singh had a
chance to raise the subject, Baba Sawan Singh gave Charan Singh his pen to
keep with him, telling him he will call him when anything needed to be
signed.  Charan Singh felt relieved thinking that his problem had been



This is a very interesting context you are placing here, Neil.

I commend you for fleshing out the details.

I always thought the pickpocketing story had more to it and you
have now supplied us with it.

In either case, I quite agree:

Can't these disciples and these gurus (I am including Charan here,
Neil) ever just be STRAIGHT up and HONEST with each other?

Why can't Sawan just tell the truth OPENLY? Why can't Charan simply
talk to Sawan directly about it?

Quite frankly, Sawan Singh seems to have a fostered a truly
dysfunctional sangat where nobody talks straight forward to anybody.

Everybody is going behind somebody's back (yea, let me read the
private diary of the guru while he is asleep; yea, let me pickpocket
this lady to see if she is up to no good).

Geez, by the looks of things, Sawan and his sangat could have a
benefited from a weekend assertive training workshop.

The utter dysfunctionality of this group is absolutely mind

With back stabbers like this, who needs Brutas?


TESSLER writes:

     She expressed her conviction that Kirpal Singh was to be the Master
and talked about the fraudulent will signing.  According to Mrs. Rajput's
account, Baba Sawan Singh replied that it was fine for Sardar Bahadur to
serve at Dera, but that "Kirpal Singh will serve the world much more than
Beas.  Kirpal Singh is the only one who can serve the world after me, and
his name will be found written on every leaf of every tree."



Well, i am looking at this tree outside the window and i don't see
Kirpal's name on any of the leaves, huh?

Boy the hyperinflationary tendency of this type of rhetoric is

So, Neil, you believe this woman but DOUBT everybody else at the
Dera who has an anti-Kirpal Singh spin?

Why not try something: doubt her.

In any case, I love the hearsay stories you keep ringing up and
posing as "facts".

Nice way to circumvent the obvious:

TWO WILLS, notarized and legally witnessed, signed by Sawan Singh,
appointing Jagat Singh.

Best to doubt those Wills and "believe" hook, line, and sinker an
Indian woman who admits to trying to get the property back via a

Again, I like your skepticism of the Beas party-line (it is
but it would be much more impressive if you would show just an ounce
of skepticism towards your own guru.

Then, I could at least see some pretense towards objectivity.

Instead, I see your arguments as more or less theologizing in the
guise of pretended history.

You see mysticism; I see politics.


TESSLER writes:

  He added that
if he named Kirpal Singh there would be no peace among the administration
and family at Beas.



So, given this line of reasoning, Sawan then goes ahead and DECEIVES
and MISLEADS 90% of his sangat (including entire generations of
families, satsangis worldwide) so that there can be "peace" among
administrators at the Dera.

Is Sawan Singh that much of a Wimp?

Given your version, given Kirpal's version,

Sawan Singh is not only a wimp, but a man who lacks the basic
integrity of a good CEO.

Geez, if this is what a guru does:

succumbs to family pressure, succumbs to administrations, succumbs
to property imperatives, and then DECEIVES and MILEADS

who needs him? 

The logic of Kirpal's version is itself a sad reflection on the
state of gurudom.

Faqir Chand's words ring more and more true:

"These gurus are indeed cheats and frauds."

But, of course, I have a much kinder version:

These gurus are merely human and Kirpal's ego was bruised and
battered by not being appointed.

Thus, he has to talk about himself a lot to make others think he is
the real article.

90% of the sangat believed Sawan Singh's documented (versus hearsay)

Oh what chumps.

Again, I think of Lao Tzu:

Those who know, don't talk;

those who Don't know, Talk a lot.

Or, in this frame:

Kirpal surely does talk a lot about his own candidacy, huh?

And, in the meantime, consistently finds fault with the "Dera"
and Sawan's family.


TESSLER writes:

     March 28th was the last Sunday satsang during the life of Hazur  Baba
Sawan Singh.  At the conclusion of the satsang, Kirpal Singh said that Lala
Munshi Ram had some announcements regarding arrangements for the management
of the Dera, stating that he personally had no knowledge of it.  He added,
"that all of them assembled there should pray to God that Hazur should
himself take care of all of them." (Truth Triumphant, page 13).  This is a
significant comment in contrast to the surrounding events.  Kirpal Singh is
asking the sangat to put their focus on the fact that Hazur was yet alive,
to pray for his life and his love, not to be concerned with what is yet
irrelevant, ie; succession.  Here he is drawing a firm line between his own
position and that of the dominant administration and family.



Yes, he certainly is drawing that line. Kirpal thinks he is the sole
successor. Sawan writes two wills indicating something else: Jagat
Singh is the successor.

The entire Dera is also bequeathed to Jagat Singh.

Kirpal Singh still thinks he is the guy to be appointed (in the
ultimate sense).

Read differently, Neil (I know it is difficult for you to "doubt"
your guru's version of events), it sounds like Kirpal Singh
was bummed by being passed over.....

And, to top it off, he has no "evidence" to support his candidacy,
except his own (never ending?) testimony about how Sawan appointed
him and a minority of Sawan devotees who align themselves with him.

In other words, Sawan allows for his sangat to be misled

You call such a tactic "divine."

I call it pathetic.

But, of course, if we take the Beas version it reads much simpler:

Sawan appoints Jagat by a will to LESSEN confusion (and actually
does, since the vast majority follow him), not increase it.

Kirpal's contestation of the succession doesn't lead to harmony.

It leads to backbiting (and every story he tells of that time has a
negative rip on the Sawan's family or inner circle).


TESSLER writes:

     After Munshi Ram's announcement a number of prominent satsangis,
including L.R. Puri, tried to go up to ask Hazur directly, who at this time
could still speak.  They were turned away.  The next day an attempt was
made again with the same result.



I know the Puri family and they aligned themselves with Jagat and

Tell us your source for this, since your implication is misleading.


TESSLER writes:

     In 1951, when Charan Singh was named in a will to succeed Jagat Singh,
he made careful inquiries in order to ascertain the will's authenticity.
(See Heaven on Earth. page 205).  In other words, even he, supposedly a
witness to the Baba Sawan Singh will, did not accept Jagat Singh's will at
face value.



But you forget to ask why he doubted it..... Charan simply couldn't
believe that HE was appointed and BECAUSE of THAT he wanted to be
doubly certain.

You seem to infer that he doubted the Will's authenticity.

Nope, he just couldn't believe that HE was appointed.

It doesn't reflect on the Will as much as it reflects on Charan's
SHOCK at being appointed.

I will give you a precise example of this:

When I hear that I advance in a bodysurfing heat I oftentimes don't
believe it, so I go to check the scores.

I check the scores not because I "doubt" the judging, but because
I am in shock that I actually advanced.

Read Charan's statements on this very point.

In any case, I quite agree it is good to doubt.

I just wish you would apply it to your own guru as well.


TESSLER writes:

     Gyani Bhagwan Singh, Kirpal Singh's secretary, tells us:
     "One day at the end of the monthly Satsang at Beas--probably it was on
the 31st of March 1948 (it was actually the 28th--NT) when Hazur was very
ill, Bhapa Kirpal Singh Ji announced to the Sangat that certain
arrangements had been made at Beas for the administration, etc., and other
such vague information.  After Satsang was over, he went to his brother's
house and I also went with him.  I asked point blank, 'Bhapa Ji, what you
said in the Satsang was quite vague, and I want to have the correct
meaning.  I want to know exactly who is the person whom Baba Sawan Singh Ji
has nominated as His successor, to whom he has given the Power to
initiate.'  This was my straight question; and his straight reply was in
these few words, 'That work has already been entrusted to me.'"52 [The
Ocean of Grace Divine. Ibid.  p. 18]



"That work has been entrusted to me" says Kirpal.

Hmm, here we get more of that infamous Kirpal humility.

It would have been a helluva lot easier if SAWAN WOULD HAVE STATED

You know, Neil, he could have done it easily.

He could have signed the Will on behalf of Kirpal (even telling him
to get out of the Dera).

He could have announced it publicly and had it recorded for all to


He instead signs TWO wills appointing Jagat Singh.


Or is simplicity not the way of the guru?

Better of confuse the masses, huh?

Divine plan?

Nope, human frailities.


TESSLER writes:

     It is a matter of supreme irony that Kirpal Singh was put in the
unusual and difficult position of being asked to announce a will naming
Jagat Singh as successor; a will of which he had no firsthand knowledge and
plainly regarded as a fiction.  Strangely enough he was never shown the
documentary evidence whose content he was asked to present.  Moreover, he
was also prevented from discussing the matter with Hazur prior to the
satsang of March 28th, when the administrators had decided the announcement
of Hazur's successor should be made and that he was to be the message
bearer.  Furthermore, the credible accounts of witnesses to the will are
shadowed by dissenting testimony and photographic evidence to the effect
that Hazur could not hold a pen at this time.



Which, of course, is another way of saying that Sawan Singh was a
chump and got duped into deceiving his massive following.

Boy, what a cool guru. He can't keep his family in line--his sons
lie, his grandsons lie, his inner circle lies.....

Everybody lies, except whom?

Oh, I get it..... Kirpal Singh and anybody who sides with him.

And who says Kirpal Singh got it from "Sawan"..... Kirpal Singh,
and more Kirpal Singh....

And who says Jagat Singh got it?

SAWAN SINGH in two legally witnessed and probated Wills.....

Oh, I see, that Kal conspiracy again so that the real guru hides
away and the fake guru gets the property......

Geez, with scams like this, it is little wonder that the honest
seeker doesn't have a clue.

But you know, who is to blame for all this (if we accept Kirpal's 
contorted version)?


And he should be roasted for it.

Otherwise, we are condoning a guru who plays "politics" with sincere
minds and hearts who do not know better.....

And if you really want to say that this is the "way" of Sant Mat,
then ask yourself why Darshan Singh made a Will?

I will tell you why: he wanted to REDUCE confusion.

Sawan, I would argue, did indeed appoint Jagat for that very reason.

Kirpal is just bummed he didn't get it.

And he is willing to backbite anybody in the process to make sure
that people believe he is the authentic guy.

Compare that with Charan's disdain of the position.

I think both are human, by the way;

I just find the latter's disdain more tasteful and less egotistical.


TESSLER writes:

      Now, in those final few days, a new and dramatic situation arose.
Kirpal Singh, in his 1949 account, writes about Hazur:
      "From the evening of 29th March to the morning of 1st April, unusual
restlessness and visible fluttering was seen visiting His physical frame.
The symptoms were also created for putting to test those surrounding Him."

     According to Pita Poot  in the early morning hours of March 30th,
Kirpal Singh and Dr. Schmidt went to Hazur.  He was in great pain.  Dr.
Schmidt was at a loss as to why this should be.  Shortly after, Bibi Ralli
reminded Bibi Hardevi that Hazur had prophesied on several occasions
throughout his illness that at the end he would be in great pain but that
when the person who would continue his work sat by him he would get relief.



Is this from "Pita Poot"?

Interesting that the very person--Bibi Ralli--who allegedly states
this to Bib Hardevi (oh that woman again--the one who appointed
THAKAR.... integrity 101!) is ALIGNED with Beas, Jagat and Charan. 

In any case, we again have "stories" that have no verification
except the vested "talkers" from each camp.

History? Nope.

Gossip posing as history?


Again, I like the stories, but remember that's what they remain.


TESSLER writes:

     Kirpal Singh writes, "Throughout the period of His illness Hazur said
many a time:  'If a person proficient in Bhajan and Simran sits by me, I
feel comforted and relieved.  Therefore those who come to me or sit near me
should do Simran.'
      "Accordingly at the time of appearance of this symptom of 'fluttering
of the body' Hazur again spoke several times these words: 'If the person
who has to do the work of spirituality after I depart, comes and sits by
me, my trouble will be gone.'
     "To comply with this -- evidently last wish of the Master -- the near
relatives of Hazur came and sat in Bhajan and Simran one by one, by the
side of the bed of Hazur, but there was no relief whatever in the
fluttering symptom of Hazur's body."
     According to Pita Poot, on the morning of the first of April at about
six,  Bibi Ralli took Kirpal Singh to the room of Hazur and then left.
Hazur, with eyes closed, was restless and in pain.  Kirpal Singh writes:
      "On the morning of 1st April, 1948, it was extremely benevolent of
Hazur to afford a chance to this humble servant - of course through the
assistance of a lady in nursing service of Hazur - to be by the side of
Master, in seclusion, for about ten or fifteen minutes.  At that time with
a heavy heart I sat near his bed and prayed to Hazur."
     Kirpal Singh prayed to his Master on behalf of the satsangis, who
could not bear the sight of his suffering, to remove this sign of illness
from his body.  "It is true that prayer succeeds where all other human
efforts fail.  Hazur with His utmost benevolence accepted this prayer."
    When Kirpal Singh opened his eyes he found that Hazur was lying in
perfect repose and was gazing at him.  Kirpal Singh then describes the
event that he would later declare was integral to the succession process:
the transmission of "the life impulse" from the eyes of the Living Guru to
his successor.  In his 1949 account Kirpal Singh writes:
      "Hazur steadily kept gazing for three or four minutes into my eyes,
and my eyes, in silent wonderment, experienced an indescribable delight
which infused intoxication down to the remotest core of my entire body -
such as was never before experienced in my whole life."53 [Brief Life
Sketch of Hazur Baba Sawan Singh.  Ibid.]
    In one account Kirpal Singh says, "He opened his eyes and gazed into
mine for three or four minutes.  There was charging like an electric
current passing from head to foot. He gave me his life impulse then closed
his eyes, never to open them again."54 [Sat Sandesh.  Feb-March 1985.  p.



More of that Kirpal "humility."

Again, you never doubt the authenticity of Kirpal's "stories"--though
that is exactly what they remain.

I like listening to them, but all I see in them is a guy who is
trying to buttress his own fledging campaign by incessantly talking
about himself and then (not so subtly) RIPPING into Sawan's family
and other disciples.

Or, in more precise language:

Kirpal not so subtly praises himself (via his quotes from Sawan) and
then (again not so subtly) rips those who would defy him his

We have another phrase for it, of course:

sour grapes.


TESSLER writes:

    In 1955 he wrote, "The authority of giving initiation into the beyond
and contacting with the Word, which he vouchsafed to me verbally on October
12, 1947, was thus completely transferred while going.  The intoxication of
that glance is still the life of my soul."55 [Message on the death
anniversary of Hazur Baba Sawan Singh Ji Maharaj.  April 2, 1955]



Again, more of Kirpal praising himself (via selective "remembered"
quotes from Sawan) and again not so subtly implying that ALL others
(especially at BEAS) are liars and cheats (since Jagat and Charan
don't have the real power.... Kirpal has that, right... Or, at least
that is exactly what he likes to claim.

I remember that classic adage of Johnson's about how a true master
never makes any spiritual claims about himself.....

I guess Kirpal doesn't read Johnson nor follow such adages....


TESSLER writes:

     Later, Dr. Schmidt announced that Hazur would pass on that night.
Kirpal Singh recalls, "The doctor attending on him said that Hazur would
leave the same night.  I called together the members of Hazur's household
(the personal attendants) and asked, 'Do you find Hazur in any pain now?'
They said, 'None whatsoever.'  'Does he not look as bright as ever?' I
asked.  'Yes, yes, very like his old self,'  they said.  I told them Hazur
would depart from his earthly life in the morning."56 [Sat Sandesh.
February/March 1985, p. 22]
     These last comments lead one to reflect on the state in which Kirpal
Singh must have found himself at this time--still in the aura of a supernal
experience, yet also torn with emotion by the imminent event whose
postponement had long been the center of his prayers.



Given your previous lead-in to this section, we are led to believe
that Kirpal's presence allowed Sawan's suffering to lessen or cease.

Of course, who says all this?

That most humble of gurus, Kirpal Singh, who is quite fond (like
usual) of talking about himself and his merits (even if cloaked in
selective quotes--he cites himself--from Sawan Singh).

You see divinity in all of these Kirpal statements.

I see an egotist who has a wonderful habit of praising himself
whenever possible and ripping his rivals.



     At 2:30 A.M. Dr. Schmidt, Kirpal Singh, and Bibi Hardevi joined others
already present in Hazur's room.  As Dr. Schmidt sat close to Hazur on one
side, holding his hand, Kirpal Singh standing on the other side, with
S.B.Jagat Singh, various family members and close sevadars present, Hazur
Baba Sawan Ji Maharaj drew his last breath at about 8:30 AM, Friday April
2, 1948.



Better yet, why don't you read Schmidt's account of it.

His version says Jagat Singh was the spiritual successor.

Contradicts point blank Kirpal's grandiose claims.

It also has lots of "stories" supporting Jagat's "spirituality."

But, like I said, we don't need stories when we actually have
SAWAN himself saying he appointed Jagat......


TESSLER writes:

     Among the last  images in Glimpses of the Great Master, on page 204,
are two remarkable photos in which Kirpal Singh is the only presence from
among the prominent Dera satsangis.  The very last photo is a full page,
artistically rendered image of the burning funeral pyre.  The previous two
photos both include Kirpal Singh.  In the first, his is the one discernible
face, as he leads the party carrying the bier along the banks of the Beas
River.  In the second, he is standing on the sandy soil near to the bier's
resting place, his hands clasped in front of him, and despite the poor
quality of the picture, one can easily perceive the grief that is plainly
etched upon his brow.



Legitimation by photography?

If that is the case, then why not mention Jagat Singh who is shown
as clearly the heir apparent and one who is completely distraught by
Sawan's death.

Oh, when we lack evidence, we look for any scrap..... even

But "doubt" those Wills!


TESSLER writes:

     Several days after the cremation of Hazur Baba Sawan Singh Ji's mortal
remains, Kirpal Singh left Dera never to return.  He went to Delhi, which
he had periodically visited during the later years of his discipleship, and
which had become the watershed for tens of thousands of refugees from the
horrors of partition.  Here he was awaited by his eldest son, Darshan
Singh, and his family, as well as many in the Delhi sangat.  In mid-April
he gave his first satsang as Master, shedding tears and saying, "A general
sits in his tent and sends a message boy to convey his orders; this is my
position." Soon after, he left for almost six months retreat in the
Rishikesh district. When he returned he was joined by many of his old
associates from Lahore and Beas, as well as a large number of the Delhi
satsang.  These were the people who knew him and recognized what he had
become.  They loved and trusted him above all other prevailing opinions.
Over time thousands of initiates of Hazur came to accept Kirpal Singh as
their Master's successor.



Or, you could put this another way:

Of Sawan's vast following, 90% sided with Jagat (this figure, by the
way, comes from a PRO-KIRPAL guy, Russell Perkins) and maybe 1/10 or
so followed Kirpal (or other lesser known gurus).

Now the interesting question is this:

Did Sawan wish to deceive 90% of his sangat, including almost all of
his family, all of his inner circle, and many of Jaimal's initiates
as well?

In other words, if Kirpal's version is true (stories, but no
evidence), then CHAOS and CONFUSION and DECEPTION was ALLOWED by
Sawan.... Indeed, encouraged by him.

In any case, I see it all as human politics....

You see a conspiracy and a mystical thread.

I can show you TWO notarized Wills signed by Sawan Singh.

You can tell me lots of stories, mostly by Kirpal...........


TESSLER writes:

      Baba Sawan Singh had said to Kirpal Singh,  "You have to carry on the
mission under the orders of your Master.  Do not care if Mrs. Grundy
[Brief Life Sketch of Hazur Baba Sawan Singh Ji Maharaj.  Ibid. p. 21]



Again, Kirpal talking about himself via his remembered quotes of


TESSLER writes:

     At Dera Baba Jaimal Singh, Sardar Bahadur Jagat Singh was formally
installed as Baba Sawan Singh's successor on Wednesday, April 13, 1948.
Spiritual leaders from various groups that had been associated with Baba
Sawan Singh were represented, including Baba Deva Singh of Tarn Taran.
Sardar Bachint Singh, the eldest son of Baba Sawan Singh, gave a speech in
which he said, "...on March 19 Huzur Maharaj Ji sent for me and said, 'I am
happy that my sons are obedient and devoted.  Just as you and Harbans Singh
are my sons, so also is Sardar Bahadur Jagat Singh.  Always obey him in all
matters.  Increase your love and devotion for him and look upon him as my
own form.'"
     In Jagat Singh's speech he described how he had refused the Mastership
but then had to submit when Baba Sawan Singh firmly said, "Jagat Singh,
these are my orders."  Jagat Singh added, "I am chronically ill and
incapable of doing much, but it is my duty to obey Hazur's orders."
(excerpts from Heaven on Earth)
     It was, by all accounts, a difficult transition, as with the loss of
Hazur, "the heart was taken out of the Dera," and the return to normalcy
was a slow one.  Many sevadars and old satsangis left Beas and did not
return for many months.  Furthermore, the administration was in poor shape,
in some instances it had become dominated by autocratic sevadars who ran
their position like a fiefdom.  It was left to Charan Singh to apply the
necessary repairs during the early period of his eventual succession.

     Although those supporting Jagat Singh's succession referred to the
will, to more than a few satsangis it was not a cut and dry matter.
Indeed, even among the several hundred American initiates of Baba Sawan
Singh, there was less than unanimity about the succession.  A number of
American disciples when they learned of Kirpal Singh, generally through
T.S. Khanna58, became enthusiastically involved. [ 58 - Trilochan Singh
Khanna was initiated by Baba Sawan Singh in 1928.  He was convinced during
Hazur's lifetime that Kirpal Singh would be Hazur's  successor, and he was
present at Kirpal Singh's first satsang in Delhi.  Working for the Indian
Consul in 1949 he was transferred to Canada and not long after, to the
United States.  Before he left India Sant Kirpal Singh gave Khanna a list
of some of Hazur's American initiates to be contacted.  He had early
correspondence with a number of American Sawan Singh initiates, including
Dona Kelly, who soon became Sant Kirpal Singh's representative for the
western United States.  Khanna was helpful in the development of Sant
Kirpal Singh's American following.  Furthermore, he was also instrumental
to the success of Kirpal Singh's first two American tours  in 1955 and
1963.  On the several occasions I questioned him as to how he knew that
Kirpal Singh would become Hazur's successor. He replied in a manner that
conveyed that to him, it had been patently obvious.]



Gurus always have their doubters.

You didn't accept Darshan Singh at first, right Neil?

You first aligned with Ajaib and then switched over to Darshan.

If you can get confused over these matters, so could a whole slew of

Americans who know less than you about the ins and outs of guru

Geez, even Arran Stephens can act as a REP for AJAIB, only to claim
later that he was "duped."

Same with any group, same with any guru.

I quite agree that guru succession is seldom airtight.

But that may be more a product of our humanness than with questions
of the transference.


TESSLER writes:

     Among these was Dr. Brock himself, who along with his wife were Baba
Sawan Singh's first American initiates (1911), as well as his first
American representative permitted to read initiation instructions.  Mrs.
Brock passed away during the lifetime of Hazur, however Dr. Brock became a
group leader for Sant Kirpal Singh, and in 1955 personally gave him a
manuscript of the letters the couple had received from Hazur over the
years. A photo of Dr. Brock with Sant Kirpal Singh can be found in Portrait
of Perfection.  In the book, As They Saw The Master, published following
Sant Kirpal Singh's first tour in 1955, Dr. Brock wrote:
      "In our correspondence (with Baba Sawan Singh), I at one time asked,
'in case he passed on before I did, would I know who the new Master would
be?'  and he said I would.  So I was quite satisfied when Mr. Khanna put me
in touch with Sant Kirpal Singh.....In Sant Kirpal Singh, I think every one
recognizes the unbounded spirit of love that permeates him and everything
he does, regardless of who or what people are or may have been."



Appeal to authority?

If you really want to go down this avenue (it is a clear fallacy in
critical thinking), then you better be more honest and forthcoming:

BEAS kicks Ruhani's butt each and every time if we are to draw up
"authority" lists (that is, who sides with which side).

I think such "authority" appeals are silly.

The larger question is which version is "true" on its own merits.

Clearly, if authority is the guide then Jagat and Charan won and
Kirpal loss.

But I don't think that's what you want to concede.

Stick to the argument.

Or, given my view,

stick to the WILL---it is obvious what Sawan intended.


TESSLER writes:

     Others, despite their affiliation with Beas, maintained discreet
contact with Kirpal Singh.



"Discreet" contact?

Geez, did i have "discreet" contact because I hung out with Darshan
Singh or Ajaib Singh.

Nope, I was just interested in doing research.

You seem to think that Kirpal is made more genuine because Dr.
Schmidt's wife still hung with him.

What kind of weird logic is this?

If that is the case, then the very lady who "supported" Kirpal
(remember the one who Charan pickpocketed) maintained a "discreet"
contact with Beas, even going back to the Dera and having her
ashes put in the river.....

This is silly thinking and I think you should re-examine why you
think any of this is relevant.

Of course, there are many people who side with varying gurus.

You did yourself for a while--aligning with Ajaib and then going to


TESSLER writes:

  One example was Mrs. Schmidt, wife of the
famous Swiss homeopathic physician Pierre Schmidt, the doctor who had
tended Hazur in his last months and claimed to have witnesses the signing
of the will.  Though Dr. Schmidt functioned as an initiating representative
for the Beas Gurus in Europe, his wife, originally a follower of another
guru, had ultimately sought initiation from Baba Sawan Singh largely on the
basis of her discussions with Kirpal Singh.  She maintained correspondence
with Kirpal Singh throughout his ministry.59 [Heart to Heart Talks . Vol.
2.  pp. 120-121]



i maintained correspondence with Darshan Singh. Does it then mean
that I was aligned with him?

Nope. Just happened to like keeping in contact.

Again, your arguments border on the inane here and simply show me
that whenever you can get an "authority" figure to side with Kirpal
you think it lends credence to your argument.

If that were the case, then Beas again kicks Ruhani's butt.....

Do you really want to argue this way?


TESSLER writes:

     As is well known Sant Kirpal Singh, attracted a considerable following
in his lifetime, developing a viable world-wide organization.  Along with
this he expanded the nature of his mission into active humanitarian

     At Dera, Jagat Singh was able to build on the firm foundation of
majority support for his succession and the migration of many initiates
from what had become Pakistan, to the Beas area.  In his few short years as
guru, he initiated roughly sixteen thousand people.  His death and
succession by a young Charan Singh in late 1951, paved the way for a new
era of consolidation and growth at Dera, which has prospered to this day.
By the mid-fifties Beas reached a critical mass of numbers, precipitating a
rapid growth cycle.  The result has been that from about 125,000 at the end
of Baba Sawan Singh's life, today Radhasoami Beas numbers about 1.4 million
     In considering the nature of the Beas guruship, we may say that it has
been essentially conservative in nature.  Dera Beas is an institution in
every sense of the word and the Beas guruship has remained centered around
the traditions built up over the century of its existence.  When the Guru
arrives for satsang he is greeted by a resounding intonation of the term
RADHA SOAMI by the assembled thousands.  Dera as a physical place and the
guru gaddi  are essentially indistinguishable as evidenced by the various
Beas books decorated with pictures of the Satsang Ghar.
     An indication of Dera conservatism is found in the age restrictions on
initiation.  Though Baba Sawan Singh himself often initiated children and
young people, at Dera the age requirements have become progressively more
strict.  No one can be initiated until their early twenties (the age
restriction was recently raised to twenty-five), and only if they are
married or their life is otherwise settled.60 [Darshan Singh was initiated
at age five and T.S. Khanna at age 13.  There are photographs in several
Beas publications of Baba Sawan Singh initiating a group of children at
Kalabagh.  In Ruhani Satsang and its successor organization, initiation
into the inner Sound is given to children, and the Five Names are given to
those fifteen and over.]



Yes, or it could be that in today's world it is considered unethical
to initiate children who don't know all their options.

For example, Thakar will initiate anybody (he even tried to convince
me to get initiated by him, even though I told him point blank he
was full of shit) and has forcibly initiated children and then
blindfolded them.

The Dera's age restrictions are a reflection, I would argue, of our
growing concerning (worldwide) that religion be a matter of choice
not a matter of early indoctrination.

In any case, it is a conservative approach that at least allows the
most impressionable to have time to make more reasoned request.

E-mail The Neural Surfer directly at

I want to go back to the home base now.