A NEW SERIES OF REGULAR EXPOSÉ POSTINGS BEGINS NOW
By Robert Priddy
No. 2: SB'S CATCH 99": YOU CAN'T WIN!
The special Janus-faced nature of the SB teaching, which attributes all negative events to human activity and all positive ones to God (i.e. to SB himself!) means that every event that seems good to any devotee is seen as the result of SB's actions - on an intangible and so uncontrollable 'level'. The doctrine conveniently also provides the ultimate excuse for anything whatever that SB may do that is incomprehensible, unpleasant or wrong. Mentioning negative events or doubts about SB soon leads to one's peripheralisation and ostracism. By propagation of stories of only positive SB miracles (nothing negative can prima facie be attributed to him) - whether true, doubtful or out-and-out inventions - the movement grows among all those who are open to exciting, mysterious influences.
The stories accumulate like flies around a jampot. One small example: a Canadian devotee I met had fallen on hard times and prayed to SB to make it possible for him to buy a house and perhaps start some educational project. One day he happened to find out that he was the lucky winner of a hundred thousand dollars due to a petrol receipt number which had been chosen by lottery as the winning number. This he was certain was SB's miracle. Has not SB said "Consider everything as a gift from God" and 'I always look after my devotees' etc.? But someone had to win the lottery anyhow and there is no proof, only subjective conviction, that there was any specific connection of the prayer and the event. Again, it is a matter of imposing belief on events. Of the many positive things that happen on average to almost everyone now and again, all those occurring to Sai devotees will be attributed to SB! (Every lottery win, every successful deal, every recovery from every illness?). The same kind of good things that happen to the other 99.99% of people are not seen in this way by those affected. Meanwhile, the many bad things that happen to devotees are not usually put down to SB, though some regard them as 'lessons' from the master which it is exclusively their job to find out about and give some meaning (i.e. no guru guidance here)!