of Buddha Purnima 2003
Posted: Barry Pittard, Australia, March 30, 2003
Ref: Circular of Joint Overseas Chairman, Ryko
I copy below the extract from the
Joint Overseas Chairman (the other Chairman is Dr Michael Goldstein) Ryko Hira's
circular on the cancellation of Buddha Purnima 2003.
The ever compassionate Lord Buddha Sai bestowed a boon upon we
devotees to commemorate the sacred festival of Buddha Purnima (Vesak) in the divine
presence for the past seven years.
This year on 16th May Friday, the eighth Buddha Purnima festival shall NOT be held in
Whitefield. As such devotees and especially Buddhists may please organise the festival in
their respective countries focusing on one of Bhagavan's main mission 'unity of faiths'
and increased understanding of Swami's divine discourses on Buddhism.
Just to hand is a query from a former
devotee. She says,
interesting. Do you think it is because of the scandal that circulates around Baba these
I think it is too hard to say. As
far as I am able to observe, Indian former devotees have been very slow to get into gear
with any sort of dissent, whether organised or sporadic. Gurus hold incredible sway
in their whole tradition. Add to this the great difficulty, compared to the
West, of discussion in that society of paedophilia. Also, Indians commonly
instinctively know, and readily acknowledge, the incredible corruption at all levels
of society in their developing country, especially in government, police and
judiciary. This can contribute ever more to a sense of fatalism, which has a long and
profound tradition in India. An exceptionally common Indian phrase which, delivered
with great resignation, well summarises this problem is: 'What to do'? I
hope some of our Indian brothers and sisters will point out historical occurrences that
run counter to my view (based on years of living in that most magnificent and most
frustrating country), for there are some marvelous counter instances. But let
us keep asking them to show the fearlessness and ingenuity of some of their great
leaders and saints, and give all honor to them when we see it displayed right
I am trusting that one of the effects of
our constant Exposure on many levels will be to get into all sorts of nooks and crannies
that we cannot even be aware of, and that this will, for example, increasingly bite
into the huge financial contibutions, with those who have been donors suddenly
disappearing from the Sai Trust/Sai Org. arena, along with their
disbursements. Perhaps it is too early-days for this to be happening but, given
the enormous extent of our intensive actions, both individual and organised, in the
last three years, it must be getting a lot closer. It is what we need to bring about, so
that the Sai Empire begins to crumble from many points within its edifice.
Wherever those who cover up this great scandal
of the centuries try to meet in venues owned by non-Sai people, venue owners will be
informed of the serious and wide-scale nature of the accusation against Sai Baba and his
accomplices. In the case of Buddha Purnima, Buddhist authorities around the world will be
given access to information sufficient to make responsible judgements about the
issues. The "main mission
'unity of faiths'" of which Hira hopefully speaks will have to succeed in the hands
of other forces, and not those of the highly authoritarian, male-dominated cult of
Sathya Sai Baba.
The reason for this is
that, first, children in their sacred innocence have to be able to have faith in us.
However often we may be berated as paedophiles, slanderers,
blasphemers, or - to use Sathya Sai Baba's descriptions of his dissenters
- "cawing crows," "Judases," "demons," and all the
rest, we will not let them down.
Go also to 'Open
Letter to the Prime Minister of India'