Smear campaigns against Hindu Gurus: Presumed guilty until proven innocent?

Smear campaigns against Hindu Gurus: Presumed guilty until proven innocent?
Hindu Voice UK, July 2009

Is it not strange that for many Guru’s, Rishi’s or Seer’s that have emerged from India, there has always been attacks on them. These have come in the guise of slander, misquotes, false allegations and smear campaigns. Why is it the vast majority of these have been orchestrated by westerners? Why do we as Hindus read, hear, accept or turn a blind eye these?

The fact that we are born in the west or we are raised to admire the west may be a reason. There are many who give a lot of credit to anyone from the west, and there are many who believe in the old statement “Where there is fire there is smoke”. Let us start with the historical case of Vivekananda the great philosopher & teacher.

When Vivekananda went to Chicago in 1893 to speak at the parliament of the worlds religions in Chicago, he was ridiculed by members of other faiths. This was not because of what he said, but because of everyone’s lack of knowledge of Hinduism and their preconceptions of a faith based in mythology with worshipping of animals and nature. Indeed when the Gita was placed on the table, members of the other faiths starting placing their holy books on top of the Gita with each stating the Gita is nothing compared with their book. This resulted in a Vivekananda showing that the Gita is the foundation the ocean of knowledge. Remove this and all other texts will collapse. This incident and subsequent attempts to frame Vivekananda by the church during his maiden US voyage because of his mass appeal; showed the anti Hindu guru stance was taken by many over 100 years ago. This approach was also accepted by many and not challenged.

Let us now take the current case with Sathya Sai Baba. Many have heard of Sai Baba as the guru or Avatar who has performed untold miracles from childhood. Indeed you will find many who have seen or benefited from the miracles throughout the world. To be sceptic is in our nature, we must all enquire & experience. However, if allegations are proclaimed by people with ulterior motives, then the sceptics will often believe the rumours.

Over 90% of anti Sai allegations can be attributed to Tal Brook (Robert Taliaferro Brooke), who as a westerner was often seen at Sai Baba’s ashram in the 1970s. He proclaimed he was Sai Baba’s number one western follower. He started the sexual allegations campaign, which initiated from him talking to an unidentified man Surya Das who was told by another unidentified man ‘Patrick’ who had apparently had physical relations with Sai Baba. No one else has met these individuals.

Why did Tal Brooke go to India? He stated that spirit guides, and belief in “psychic stuff” brought him to India and to Sai Baba. Why did he suddenly stop his pro Sai Baba work whilst at the Ashram titled “The Amazing Advent”? Which Incidentally Sai Baba refused to bless. Why did he leave the ashram & circulate his anti Sai Baba rumours soon afterwards? Because he stated he had demonic encounters, hearing voices of spirits, out of body experiences, but acknowledged that Sai Baba had Christ like powers that baffled top scientists. In 1976 Tal Brook published an anti Sai book titled “Lord of the Air”*. In the book and in subsequent years he has attacked Sai Baba & Hinduism, suggesting that enlightenment is an evil path to Satan and that God-Men and Gurus are in a state of perfect demon possession. He believes that Sai Baba embodies a “timeless, demonic presence“. What does this say about the integrity and objectivity of his claims against Sai Baba?

What is also missing is the story of his constant high usage of drugs while at university & India, and his drug induced hallucinations of being self-realized. Other Americans recognised him as a fanatic Christian at the ashram, which is contrary to his claim of becoming a Christian post Sai Baba. He was a member of the Neo-American Church founded by Arthur Kleps (a follower of LSD guru Timothy Leary). Kleps was alleged to be anti-Semitic by the Dutch police who expelled him from Holland. Tal Brooke has denounced Hollywood as being anti Christ, and his smear campaign has lasted 30 years with multiple books and now with expensive internet ad campaigns.

Tal Brooke’s rumours and books led to many copy cat accusers, most of whom who had had a dubious past, but not once has there been any proof. The recent most famous example is of Alaya Rahm who in the 1990s as a young man told he had sexual encounters with Sai Baba. The western media jumped on this, and even the BBC produced a programme which effectively made Sathya Sai Baba appear guilty. However Alaya Rahm (and others) had many opportunities to file a police or court case anywhere in India, this has never occurred. A lawsuit was created in the Superior Court of California on January 6, 2005 (Case No. 05cc01931). But realising expose was high he refused to go to court. No other alleged victim came forward to testify in support of his allegations, though anti-Sai activists claimed there were many alleged US victims. Amazing some eminent western Hindus have often joined the anti-Sai crusade with enthusiasm, which has often led to more people accepting the false accusations.

Such examples and more (e.g. on Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and Maharishi Mahesh) show that when anti Guru Statements are made, everyone takes notice. On an international stage, as Hindus we have never done our own research on to try and prove that the Gurus may well be innocent. Worse, when the allegations are proved to be incorrect, we have not been able to use that opportunity to publicise that nationally or internationally.

*Republished in 1979 as “Sai Baba, Lord Of The Air”, renamed “Avatar of Night” in 1982 with a reprint in 1984, was renamed “Lord Of The Air: Tales of a Modern Antichrist” in 1990 and reprinted again as “Avatar of Night” in 1999.

Hindu Voice Reference

Conny Larsson – Sai Baba Critic Turned Psychic Trance Medium – An Overview

Conny Larsson – Sai Baba Critic Turned Psychic Trance Medium – An Overview
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Conny Larsson And Maharishi Mahesh Yogi

CONNY LARSSON’S CHANGING STORIES ABOUT MAHARISHI MAHESH YOGI:

When Did Conny Larsson Become Maharishi Mahesh Yogi’s Private Secretary? 1971 or 1973?

griess.st1.at/gsk/fecris/english%20Larsson.htm
“In 1971, I became the guru’s private secretary and travelled with him everywhere – day and night.”

vedicmasterclass.org/conny_larsson.php
“1973- Private secretary to Maharishi Mahesh Yogi founder of the TM organisation.”

snowcrest.net/sunrise/Pbconhis.htm
“I was [T.M. founder] Maharishi Mahesh Yogi’s secretary during the year 1973.”

When Did Conny Larsson Leave Maharishi Mahesh Yogi? 1975 or 1976?

griess.st1.at/gsk/fecris/english%20Larsson.htm
“This was too much for me and I told my master ‘I cannot follow you any longer’. So I left in 1975.”

home.hetnet.nl/~ex-baba/engels/witnesses/conny.html
“I was in despair due to the fact thatI had left my Master Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in 1976…”

Why Did Conny Larsson Leave Maharishi Mahesh Yogi?
Because of charging large sums of money for a certain TM course:

saionline.org/essays/little_clown.html
“I was a fairly wealthy person [Mr. Larson was a well-known actor in Sweden in his youth], and joined Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in the Transcendental Meditation (TM) movement when I was nineteen years of age. I was his secretary, his masseur, and his night boy, i.e. I guarded him at night. In 1975 we had a difference of opinion due to certain circumstances and when he started charging very large sums of money for a certain Transcendental Meditation course. I decided that this could not be right and I told him so, an asked him to change it or stop it. I gave him four days to think about it, after which I approached him again. He inferred that I was wrong, and he was right. I had not agreed of his practices, and I therefore felt, that I had to leave him.”

Because of organisational reasons:

home.hetnet.nl/~ex-baba/engels/witnesses/conny.html
“When I came to you in 1978 I was in despair due to the fact thatI had left my Master Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in 1976, mostly due to organisational reasons. During my time with him I became his personal secretary and loved the duty to serve a holy man with the best of intentions. Under his supervision I educated myself in Rishikesh 1969 to become a teacher of meditation in the age old Shankaracharya-tradition. His own guru was the Shankaracharya of JyotirMath.”

Because Maharishi allegedly wanted the Nobel Prize for himself, allegedly lied about levitation and a deceptive photo shoot:

griess.st1.at/gsk/fecris/english%20Larsson.htm
“I began to wake up when he declared that Mother Teresa was the worst kind of human being on earth. She later won the Nobel Prize. His main problem with her was that he wanted the Nobel Prize for himself. I was told to manipulate those responsible for choosing the people to be nominated. We tried to do this and succeeded, as he had much influence at that time, to get him nominated but this was blocked by King Olaf of Norway. He then started saying that all his teachers, I was one of them, were soon going to levitate. We were going to fly and we would visit all kinds of planets about which the psychiatrists and other spiritual teachers were always telling us. I realised that this could not be true as I taught these courses. They called it the TM-Sidhi Programme. At these “flying” courses people would be sitting cross-legs on their backsides on their mattresses and they jumped whilst sitting like this. After a while one could become very skilful and could jump up as high as a metre or so only to fall back again. I heard Maharishi tell a French photographer with a slow camera just to cut the “fall back” part and put the photos together when they were “up” which gave a flying image. So he put them together and this was broadcast all over the world. This was too much for me and I told my master “I cannot follow you any longer”. So I left in 1975.”

Because of Maharishi’s alleged sexual acts with women:

tmfree.blogspot.com/search/label/sex
“He then used to call one girl every now and then and I always thought he was dictating a letter or something in the middle of the night. The girls that came last in the night never looked happy when she came out from the 30 minutes audience but never thought of it to be a pleasure or sexual meeting. Knowing what I now know I feel just embarrassed that my Master didn’t stand up for his sexual lust or love to women. That would have been perfectly OK with me anyhow. But to hide and lie and create an M-group that I and many other boy belonged to was just a soap opera I now think.
Regarding MMY’s guilt, he is all aware of it, for one day after a great f**k on the roof of his villa under the moonlight and in the protection of the mosquito-net he called for Tatwalababa, the naked yogi, for his protection and for his cleansing of the ashram, this was what he explained to the lady he f**ked with. They loved each other for years. Look at the group-picture from one of your photos which MMY did in Rishikesh when you where there, you are in the picture and so are MMY and the women he loved and f**”

Did Dr. Hislop Write Maharishi In 1973?
Conny Larsson claimed:

snowcrest.net/sunrise/Pbconhis.htm
“I was [T.M. founder] Maharishi Mahesh Yogi’s secretary during the year 1973. I did not know about Dr. Hislop then. One day that year, a letter came to Maharishi from this Dr. Hislop saying that he could not stay in the TM-movement because now he had met God in the form of the Avatar of Sai, and Hislop thereupon left the Maharishi and the TM movement. Maharishi, who had invested much in Dr. Hislop, appointing him as his first teacher in the western world and even having him become secretary for a while, felt bad. He asked me to write Hislop a letter telling him about the beautiful things that were going on within the TM movement and that Dr. Hislop had his natural place in this. He also asked Hislop not to follow this new master because he was Not the avatar at all. Hislop was told he was now following a dark path.”

Conny’s account is directly contradicted by John Hislop himself in his book “My Baba and I” (in which Hislop said he left Maharishi in 1968, five years prior to Conny’s account).

Conny Larsson Was Maharishi’s Secretary For How Long?

vedicmasterclass.org/conny_larsson.php
“1973- Private secretary to Maharishi Mahesh Yogi founder of the TM organisation.”

snowcrest.net/sunrise/Pbconhis.htm
“I was [T.M. founder] Maharishi Mahesh Yogi’s secretary during the year 1973.”

According to Mark Landau, Conny Larsson only served a few weeks as Maharishi’s personal secretary. Landau claimed:

“In my memory, Conny’s time on the job was limited to a few weeks — i was surprised at how short he lasted, though, in retrospect, i would mark that up to his integrity, sensitivity and what he saw from the get go.”

As with Sathya Sai Baba, Conny Larsson’s stories about Maharishi Mahesh Yogi have changed, progressing from fairly innocuous claims to highly defamatory ones. Why?

Reference

Conny Larsson – The Pseudo-Guru

Conny Larsson solicits his profile on VedicMasterClass.org (an entire website mostly dedicated to him, his “Master Classes” and his Anti-Sai articles). Funny enough, most of Conny’s “qualifications” came from Gurus he once worshipped, eventually turned against and accused of sexual impropriety:

  • 1965-1968 Conny Larsson is an educated actor at the Governmental Actingschool (Statens Scenskola) in Malmo-Sweden.
  • 1968-1975 He worked periodically as an comedian actor at Malmo Stadstheater.
  • 1969- Educated to teacher in meditation in Rishikesh-Himalya-India.
  • 1970- Educated to teacher in SCI (Science of Creative Intelligence in Livigno-Italy).
  • 1973- Private secretary to Maharishi Mahesh Yogi founder of the TM organisation.
  • 1980- Founded and runned Karnan Home-Institute as a director and cheif therapist for drug addicts and severe criminals.
  • 1998- Founded in Sweden, Polen and Germany – the Vedic Mantra Meditation school.
  • 1998- 2006 Holding International courses and educating teachers in Vedic Mantra Meditation.
  • 2005- Published the book ‘Bakom Clownens Maska'(Behind the Mask of the Clown).
  • 2006- Settling down in Cyprus for the Advanced Courses and for founding The Inter- national Master Class to be held forward. (Reference)

The following comment is located on the VedicMasterClass.org website:

“Our aim is to create an atmosphere for open-minded discussions and freedom to chose whatever suites you best from the activities provided. Secterist views are not welcome.”

The comment above is wholly contradictory. I guess the alleged “open-minded discussions” are not so open-minded afterall. Anyone with “secterist views” is not allowed to participate in Conny Larsson’s “open minded discussions” and they are censored and prohibited from expressing their beliefs and experiences (sounds very cultish if you ask me).

The following is a solicitation for an International Yoga Vacation (2007) with Conny Larsson (on the Yoga Harmonia website, which is very much devoted to him) where he plays the role of a Meditation Instructor, Vedic Mantra Initiator and Psychic Healer:

“International yoga vacation with Conny Larsson in the Sea Palace in Gaski near SarbinowoThe Sea Palace is located ca 900 meters from the sea in a beautiful historical park of 6.5 ha, in a picturesque village of Gaski between Koeobrzeg and Koszalin.The location of the Sea Palace ensures a pleasant and tranquil retreat in a quiet setting. In the vicinity of the Palace there are numerous sports facilities such as volleyball and basketball courts, tennis court and children’s playground. A guarded car park is also available. For an additional small charge the Palace offers hydromassage, magnotherapy, inhalation and various types of massage.Vacation period I: 29 June – 07 July – 8 days.
Vacation period II: 07 July – 14 July – 8 days.

Cost:

· 130 PLN (US $46) per night for a single room, full cost for 8 days 1040 PLN (US $368)

· 110 PLN (US $39) per night for a double room, full cost for 8 days 880 PLN (US $311), additional person who will not participate in classes 780 PLN (US $276)

· 100 PLN (US $35) per night, three- and four- bedrooms, full cost 800 PLN (US $283), additional person who will not participate in classes 700 PLN (US $248)

The number of single and double rooms is limited, and they are allocated on a first in first served basis. There is a bathroom and toilet in each room as well as TV and SAT equipment.

Notifications of participation and advance payment of 200 PLN (US $70) should be made by 31 May 2007, either directly in the Harmonia Yoga Centre or by transfer to the following account:

Marianna Rykowska – Grzywna PKO BP S.A. Poznan

Nr 04 1020 4027 0000 1202 0204 9773

The advance payment will not be re-funded upon cancellations.

A modernly equipped kitchen ensures tasty and wholesome home made meals, choice of normal and vegetarian meals. Light breakfast and two larger meals a day are planned.

We start with dinner on the arrival day at 6 p.m.
Morning and afernoon hatha yoga classes will start and finish with meditation sesions with Conny Larsson. In the spare time you can rest in the park, visit local historical sites, sun bathe on the beach, and in the evening – listen to lectures, discuss and sing mantras with Conny Larsson.

Organised by:
Anna Rykowska – Grzywna, Centrum Jogi HARMONIA ul. Towarowa 45 w Poznaniu
http://www.jogaharmonia.pl

Email: joga@jogaharmonia.pl

Phone. 66 58 159 lub 61/853 71 12 or mobile 600 220 961

You can find more about the Sea Palace at http://www.palacmorski.ta.pl”

guru4.jpgguru3.jpg
guru1.jpgguru2.jpg

Conny Larsson studied under Maharishi Mahesh Yogi and Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba and later turned on them and accused them both of sexual improprities. So what does Conny Larsson do? He sets himself up as a Meditation Teacher (i.e., “Guru”), a Vedic Mantra Initiator (he gives mantras to his “students” and instructs them how to use them), becomes a Psychic Healer (in which he touches women in visually inappropriate ways), lectures on spirituality, conducts seminars and teaches “Master Classes”. Conny Larsson has succumbed to the very same Guru-affliction he likes to trash and bash with others. Furthermore, Conny Larsson preaches “open-mindedness” but pubicly and bluntly censors those holding sectarian views.

What’s next in this Anti-Sai three-ring circus?

Reference