18 Basic Myths about the Guru Sathya Sai Baba
(and Much More)
Document date: 12-07-02
From: Brian Steel
Copyright © Brian Steel 2002
Sathya Sai Baba is India's most publicised living guru. In addition to over 600 books and articles in English alone, the official websites of his Sathya Sai Organisation, and innumerable unofficial devotee websites have sung his praises as an Omniscient and Omnipotent Avatar, miracle-maker, and public benefactor. In recent years, a growing number of dissenting views and serious allegations (some echoing earlier critical writings which failed to have any appreciable impact on devotees' opinions) have been appearing on the Internet, in the international print media, and in television documentaries. Some of these findings have converted the undoubtedly charismatic guru Sathya Sai Baba into a highly controversial public figure. These new revelations, analyses, allegations, and findings are multiplying.
Some of the above sources as well as my own lengthy and intensive research (as a devotee and now as an ex-devotee) have gradually convinced me that there is already a compelling body of evidence to indicate that the following common beliefs and assertions about Sathya Sai Baba, which are fundamental to the persona which he, the SSO, spokespersons, writers, and devotees have projected to the world for several decades, are NOT supported by the facts. (It is also my opinion that such evidence will continue to grow as more and more objective researchers examine the evidence and refuse to be distracted by the smokescreens of obfuscation and denial instinctively thrown up by the SSO and unconditional devotees.)
The 18 Basic Myths about the guru Sathya Sai Baba are:
1. That he is the reincarnation of Shirdi Sai Baba.
2. That he is a Purna Avatar.
3. That he is Omnipotent.
4. That he is Omniscient.
5. That he is Omnipresent.
6. That his birth followed an Immaculate Conception.
7. That the birth of the claimed trio of Sai Avatars into the family of his ancestors was a boon granted by Siva and Shakti.
8. That his advent was prophesied by Jesus Christ, Muhammad, the Book of Revelations, Nostradamus, inter alia, and announced on 24 November 1926 by Sri Aurobindo.
9. That he will reincarnate again after 2022 as Prema Sai.
10. That he made his two Declarations and began his official Mission in 1940.
(IF he made the Declarations, as is possible, there is documentary evidence to show that it would have been in 1943.)
11. That he was engaged full time on his Mission in the years 1941, 1942 and 1943 (rather than still at school for most of that period).
12. That he resurrected the dead bodies of Radha Krishna and Walter Cowan. (He may have had a healing influence in a near-death experience by these two men).
13. That he is able to speak all languages fluently.
14. That the printed version of his Discourses (which is his principal form of communication with devotees in many languages) is a faithful and close translation of what he actually says in Telugu. (I remind readers that public access to LITERAL translations of his Telugu Discourses has been curtailed since July 2002.)
15. That he always tells the truth.
16. That he never sleeps.
17. That he does not feel or show anger or strong emotion.
18. That he is fully cognizant of the activities and functioning of the Sathya Sai Organisation.
Does all this matter? Only if you are interested in the truth.
I welcome correspondence from people who have taken the trouble to examine the extensive body of evidence referred to at the beginning of this statement and who wish to point out factual errors in the sections of the counter-evidence for which I am responsible.
The following critical websites (together with their LINKS) are cautiously recommended to discerning seekers of counterbalance to the mass of uniformly hagiographical information offered by the Sathya Sai Organisation, devotee Web groups, and books and articles by devotees and naive outsiders.
- 1) Sathya Sai Baba Expose News A very extensive website with testimonies, articles, letters, videos and more.
2) Allegations concerning Sathya Sai Baba A major exposé website with a wide range of serious articles. Also in Spanish and Russian.
3) An Ongoing Investigations into Claims and Realities Surrounding Sathya Sai Baba A thoroughly documented scholarly website.
4) Sathya Sai Baba - Extensive Information and Viewpoints A large website revealing all known aspects of Sai Baba and his works etc.
5) Sai Baba Exposé - Revealing Hidden Facts about India's Biggest Guru and his Worldwide Cult. Also in Swedish & Danish
6) Sathya Sai Baba - Stories, Myths and Deceits A former Sai Organisation leader's examination of all claims. Also in Norwegian
7) Sai Baba - A Master of love or a master of deception, or Both? A website "not meant to condemn but to concern".
8) Sathya Sai Baba Prophesies and Photo Gallery Sai Baba's 'prophesies' and how his words compare to actions - graphic proofs.
9) Sai Baba Exposed A weblog examining the guru's claims, also from a Hindu scriptural viewpoint.
10) The International Sathya Sai Organisation A participant observational study and analysis of its structure, management and functions.
11 ) Belief and Sathya Sai Baba: Avatar or Imposter-Trickster? Useful page with links to relevant websites (but some no longer extant)
http://www.indian-skeptic.org/html/index.html [especially the works of B. Premanand]
http://db.exbaba.de [A 1992 Investigative Web-book by Dale Beyerstein)