Vellor Krishnan Ramakrishnan Raghavan, who I once knew through my close confidante and friend, V.K. Narasimhan, wrote a comment on my wordpress blog in which he sets out to defame me with complete untruths, as I shall explain.
Firstly, this ill-informed smear merchant wrote: "Robert Priddy came to Puttaparthi after worshipping Bhagawan Baba for over 12 yrs." Not the case. I was only mildly worshipping him (hopefully) for about 2 years maximum. Raghavan has simply concocted his account from the first line!
Raghavan continues with his contrived account: "He claimed that he was called by Swami in a mysterious way. At Puttaparthi he expected special treatment from Swami.But Swami neglected him till he lost his patience." Yes, I was called by inexplicable events, which I followed up in order to go and investigate what I could. I did not expect special treatment but without asking he gave me some vibuti and around that time my neck and back problems almost disappeared. However, I eventually found it was due to the climate, since the problem returned when I got back to cold Norway. I did not lose patience at all... I was certainly not desperate for anything, at age 48 I was already mature, self-reliant and very widely travelled and educated.
Raghavan continues his lies: "At the last minute Swami granted interview and lambasted him for his impatience and pronounced self-importance. When this half-baked devotee complained to Swami that he could not get shanthi(peace) in the ashram, Swami told him in no uncertain terms that shanthi or prashanthi was not sold across the counter in the shops in Puttaparthi. An aspirant has to earn it by steadfast spiritual sadhana in the midst of chaos. That was the quality of a real devotee."
The fact is that no interview was given us on our first visit, and not at the last minute (which Sai Baba often did to people he had been told were about to leave).
One my second visit a year later my wife and I had two long interviews, plus two private interviews. On Christmas Eve 1986, Sai Baba gave my wife a silver medallion and to me a 6-carat green gemstone and gold ring (which he claimed was a diamond, but which was years later proven a cheap synthetic sapphire). He did that, I now know, because we had promised him in private a large sum of money as a donation to the college (but which I had no way to deliver at the time. I did so later on). I never said a work about getting peace in any interview or other meeting with Sai Baba, I was already of a peaceful enough nature and knew from long, wide experience that such matters depended on myself, not on anyone else. 'Swami' said nothing at all about peace (shanthi or prashanthi) being sold in shop, neither then nor later in our interviews. He never corrected me for 'impatience' nor did he 'lambast' me for anything, let alone self-importance. (However, the ashram was a noisy place full of pushy and unhelpful people, often arrogant and ignorant, also run somewhat one the lines of a social prison, but we bore it with good humour). I am known for not taking myself seriously but being friendly, open and not pushing my own interests unduly. What Sai Baba did say in that interview was "He has a very good mind" and "He is good, good, very good" (and that was not the only occasion he praised me, but I did not take it very seriously as I knew myself for better and worse and was above such flattery... now I can see he was quite ignorant about my wife and I - except what he had heard beforehand from the VIP group leader -misjudged us on several crucial points!
Raghavan then states: "This psuedo devotee who had even authored a book on Bhagawan, should refresh himself by reading his own writings. "
I did write a book about my unusual experiences before I understood the totally unaccountable and mendacious nature of the ashram and all his officials, the wall-to-wall cover up of Sai Baba's heinous crimes and the real nature of Sathya Sai Baba as a fallible human being, though one with unusual abilities, intuition and cleverness, though ignorant and subject to many ordinary failings. I know well what I wrote and have commented on it in numerous web pages to put the record straight. I came to learn from several of my personal friends – truly honest and good persons – that Sathya Sai Baba took advantage of their devotion to abuse them sexually. The testimonies from literally hundreds of persons altogether that he was a sexual abuser (and that included school children at his school down to 6 years of age) was what caused my final break with him and the beginning of a long and intensive investigation of all aspects of Sai baba. The results are found on these web pages. As to learned devotees, I have met most of the VIPs and I can only recognize genuine wide learning in a handful. V.K. Narasimhan, my closest friend at Prashanthi Nilayam was one such and I have recorded his struggles and extensive private views, poor man. That Sathya Sai Baba approved the execution of the four devotees who attacked his servitors in 1993 is certain, there were witnesses and at least one who had a privileged access to the events that took place that night (Eileen Weed or ‘Divya’ who speaks Telugu and lived in the apartment of Venkamma, the unbelieving elder sister of Sai Baba), and the huge bribes paid to many resident families to keep silent about what they knew.
Raghavan concludes with excessive claims and rounds off self praise: " Millions of learned devotees like me know from our own personal experiences that Bhagawan Baba is God. I am 74 yrs.of age and am worshipping Him for over 42 yrs. I am enjoying every moment of my devotion. I pity this man.Hail Sai. VKR Raghavan,India ."
The fact is that Raghavan does not know "millions of devotees' personal experiences" yet he naively claims they know that 'Bhagavan Baba is God'. Several good personal friends of mine - honest, intelligent and trusting people - later told me in detail how they sexually abused by Sai Baba, and have been contacted by hundred who have either been sexually molested, or their children have, plus former students whose friend were murdered on Sai Baba's word. I have advised a dozen or more persons who were literally swindled out of large sums of money or property by underhand means or on other false premises, sometimes making their wives divorce them and donate their alimony to Swami. I have been contacted by many hundreds of former followers who have awful stories to tell of Sai Baba's breaks of trust of diverse kinds.
As to Raghavan himself, he considers himself learned. I well know who he is and I can say he is 'learned' only insofar as he is fully brainwashed by Sai Baba's teaching and Indian religious speculation. His criticism of me is directly against all that his bogus God, Sai Baba, who demanded of devotees not to criticise others, but rather criticise oneself, let alone lie about others. He also sadf that those who abuse others abuse themselves. Taghavan is therefore not a good devotees. Still, I do not hold with Sai Baba's simplistic commandment... liars, criminals, wrong doers and ciminal have to be criticised! V.K. Narasimhan was in a class apart from Raghavan with world-wide experience and culture, Raghavan was trapped inside the Hindu-Indian mental fantasy bubble. He considers himself one of the chosen few and will hear nothing that could shake this comfortable delusion in denial of the truth, but which is very frayed as he must surely know in his secret heart that Sai Baba was not what he claims... compassionate and selfless, the creator of the Universe and all that rotten disproved self-boasting propaganda. I can only figure that he arracks me at long last because he is much disturbed by confrontation with some of the countless negative facts that have emerged about Sathya Sai Baba and which I have publicized fully.