By: Robert Priddy

Date: 11-29-03

Email: rpriddy@online.nl

On the holiest day in the Sai calendar - Shivarathri- and in a symbolically very holy place (beside the Sai shrine room), Yaani Drucker was brutally raped. The rapist was convicted and imprisoned on her evidence. She worships Sathya Sai Baba as the Creator of the Universe. At the same time she lays claim to realisation of the Advaitic reality of herself as being God, all-powerful etc. Because she has set herself up as a spiritual teacher (along with her husband, Alvin Drucker), it is important that her account be examined and any bogus basis for this claim be demonstrated. 

She wrote of the rape, “I would like to share a story with you that is not real, that never happened, and that had no effect on Truth. “ This is an extraordinary statement, since it denies at once what it asserts. But the rape actually took place, according to her and her husband, but she also says it ‘never happened’. Knowing that she holds that Sai Baba is God and everyone is God, then who does she consider was the actual rapist, ‘in reality’?  Sathya Sai Baba? Or herself? Or the man in prison? Or no one? (Perhaps the physical rapist was therefore unfairly convicted? I think not!). Yaani Drucker concludes that it never happened, which implies that no one could have been responsible. It is all a great absurdity which breaks down under examination and in the practice of life. Can anyone take seriously such a self-contradictory form of ‘spiritual guidance’ as she supposes to advance through this… or accept her claim to a higher wisdom as a result of this rape experience? Her appeal to the monistic ‘advaitic philosophy’, as occasionally preached by Sathya Sai Baba (when he is not preaching its opposite) is highly unconvincing. 

Yaani Drucker said: “But I cannot be bound by the past.  I can choose to totally let it go.  Sai Baba teaches "Past is past.  Forget the past.  There is no past.  All there is, is the ever-present now." But this idea of the ‘omnipresent’ overlooks and hides something important, as any child can see, which is that the past actually was.   

Sathya Sai also said, “Man is distinguished from other animals… by his ability to recognize the past, the present and the future. Man alone has this capacity to comprehend this threefold nature of time.” “However, man should not worry about what is past. The present is a product of the past. What has happened is beyond recall. It is futile to worry about the future because it is uncertain. Concern yourself only with the present. By “present” we may be thinking only of this moment. But this is not the present as Divinity sees it. For the Divine, the “present” is what is “omnipresent”. This means that both the past and the future are present in what is because it is the result of the past and the seed of the future. For the Divine these three categories of time do not exist.” (Sanathana Sarathi October 1988, p.255).  

The above passage is a series of ambiguities… there is no useful meaning to be had from saying of time past or future that they exist or are, and especially not when, in the same breath, denying that they do not exist. Everyone knows that the consequences of what was caused or done in the past are now present… and that present events and actions will have (uncertain) consequences for what occurs in future. So what is the point in telling this? Evidently, SSB wants to impress so as to reassert that he is Divine and special because, for him, past, future and present “do not exist”. That the past and future do not exist as such is experienced by and is self-evident to everyone, but to hold that the present does not exist is just utter nonsense. (And if so, what would become of the ‘present’ in ‘omnipresent’?) How should he explain, it’s all the same to him!  

These vague conflations of meanings by SSB may serve to make him seem to some young or otherwise untutored persons as being mysteriously wise and all-knowing, when he is simply unable to explain anything really that is not evident to anyone who spares it a proper thought. To further the belief in his claimed superior knowledge and omniscience, SSB has also stated that the human mind is limited and can never be omnipresent (Summer Showers in Brindavan 1979, p255). This sounds as if it has portent meaning, but actually explains precious little…nothing more than that what is beyond the mind cannot be known (simply because it is still unknown), which is self-evident. 

Yaani Drucker has latched onto this as a way of trying to rationalise to herself why she was raped (which she either was or was not… but not both). One has to be sorry for her both because of the awful event and for the way in which she has been misled. That she publicises it all is the problem, for it can mislead others further. Now she claims realisation that she is God herself… “I am all-powerful because I am not separate or different from God.  Can we imagine God being victimised?  No.  Well, then neither can I be victimised, unless I want to be, because He created me just like Himself.” However, logically it should not be he, but she who created herself?   So what is the basis of this confusion and the ‘very unlikely story’ she projects? 

The basis is the grand eclectic mix-up of ideas that Sathya Sai Baba propagates, a ‘hold-all’ teaching which all at the same time includes dualistic and monistic theologies, plus whatever is found in between.  Sathya Sai Baba, whom she recognizes as the ultimate Godhood with all that this could imply, creates great confusion by claiming (‘dvaitically’)  that he is uniquely God and accepting constant worship as such, while also saying (‘advaitically’) that everything and everyone is God and not just partially but wholly so.   

The way in which SSB attempts to reconcile these opposite conceptions is by saying that he is fully aware (‘self-realised’) while his worshippers (mere humans) are not, and they need him as an object of worship so as to realise themselves. At the same time, he claims that he – qua God – is only pure and good, while all bad an impure things come entirely from us human beings (some being designated by him as ‘demons’)… while he turns around again and insists that he (i.e.’God Almighty’ etc. etc.) sees neither good nor bad, for they ‘don’t really exist’ (in short, God can recognise no values whatever!). Yet he again contradictorily holds that human values are eternal ‘divine’ existents, and these values are necessarily centered on what is good or bad (i.e. what is either violence or not, either right action or wrong, either truth or untruth).   SSB also ‘teaches’ the intermediate position, ‘vishishtadvaita’ whereby humans have some divinity in them, plus something which is not so (adharma, worldliness, maya, desires etc.).

But this lot taken together does not hold water.  No wonder that Yaani Drucker, who tries her best to hold onto all Sathya Sai Baba’s contradictory teachings, and to believe that his actions follow his own words, is confused.  

It is not surprising that Alvin Drucker is equally confused, having been thrown out of the Sai Organisation and all SSB ashrams after many years of living there for insisting on marrying in open defiance of SSB, who dismissed him. Perhaps he imagines he was never thrown out of the ashram, or was never there in the first place? Since he is silent as a clam in public (though not always privately!) about what he knows took place; that many distraught parents of boys and young men came to him when he was resident at Prashanthi, telling him of sexual molestations by Sathya Sai, he presumably also imagines that ‘nothing ever happened’? Is this the practice of advaitic wisdom? If so, it is a farcical parody of the truth and decency! Such persons, whatever their positive experiences, who have also been systematically duped by Sathya Sai Baba’s promises and deceptive equivocations and who have also had full opportunity to observe his fraudulent ‘materialisations’ for so many years, and who do not speak up about incriminating facts they know about SSB, should certainly not presume to set themselves up as some kind of spiritual experts! 

See also my critical discussion of SSB’s vague teaching on the past Forget the Past?