Category

Sathya Sai Baba

Issue of Defamation on Google

By Cyberstalking, Equalizer, Gerald Joe Moreno, Sathya Sai Baba

Gerald Joe Moreno (Equalizer)

In his campaign to attack all critics of Sathya Sai Baba (d.2011) and himself, Gerald Joe Moreno proved nothing except that the role of a cyberstalking sectarian apologist is acutely misleading and reprehensibly libellous. 

In January 2009, a lawyer passed verdict on the internet attacks by Gerald Joe Moreno (alias Equalizer) in my direction: 

I think that [Gerald] Joe Moreno has been quite defamatory, and I would be very surprised if he has not taken the precaution of ensuring that no property of any value is in his own name, and thus not available to execute against action exerted to satisfy an award of Damages for Defamation. His web writing comes across to me as that of a petty and fanatical lout who always needs to have the last word, and that in itself makes me wonder about his motivation and, thus, to doubt his good faith and his credibility. His output realistically amounts to little more than a hopefully face-saving smokescreen for the benefit of his own cheer squad. 

The count against Moreno increased substantially by 2010. From 2007, he ignored my detailed protests at his misrepresentation and libel. He is reported to have suffered decease in 2010, at the age of forty. Only part of his web output remained visible on Google. 

Hostile and misleading representations of myself were sustained at diverse Moreno sites and blogs. Those incursions included the blog called sathyasaibaba, where Moreno misleadingly referred to himself as “sathyasaibaba,” thus creating an impression that his guru Sathya Sai Baba was here the voice of authority.

In more general terms, the collective toll of Moreno victims aroused the verdict of lawyers, in three different countries, that the web attacks of Gerald Joe Moreno were markedly libellous. His output remains a warning of what sectarian zeal can do in the furtherance of “hate campaign,” treating any kind of criticism as a punishable offence. This situation has served to illustrate the extent of abuse which can occur on Google, along with the satellites blogspot and wordpress, a largely unmonitored field with no due regulations in force. 

A pertinent question exists as to the status and propriety of blog defamation surviving on blogspot and wordpress after the decease of a malpractitioner,  in the face of active complaint.

The Moreno inquisitorial web labyrinth, prior to his death, was an obvious attempt to annul all criticism of his guru Sathya Sai Baba. Moreno frequently repeated his mantra that the Puttaparthi guru had never been convicted of any crimes. The “allegations” were therefore invalid, he liked to assert. The reason for a massive loophole in the law was that socially prominent devotees like Dr. Michael Goldstein (of California) blocked all investigation. Goldstein appeared in a well known BBC interview (dating to 2004), during which he dismissed all critical factors via his emphatic belief that no guilt could apply to Sathya Sai (the Western medic also rated his own ability to discern cases of sexual abuse). A BBC complaint emerged that Goldstein relied on the testimony of the accused, not any due process of enquiry.

Goldstein had been requested to confront Sathya Sai Baba with the abused instance of Alaya Rahm, a young American devotee. The guru responded: “Swami [Sathya Sai] is pure.” The Puttaparthi avatar was not slow to negotiate the new threat to his ascendancy. The next day, he imparted a discourse in which he lavishly praised Goldstein, more than he had ever praised anyone. Goldstein proudly referred to this eulogy as “the peak of my life.”  According to ex-devotees, Goldstein subsequently started to fund Moreno in his apologist project online. 

The Danish documentary Seduced by Sai Baba had caused a stir in 2002, being opposed by devotees who resorted to a legal procedure that failed. Produced by Ojvind Kyro of Denmark Radio (DR), the Seduced feature profiled “Sam Young,” meaning Alaya Rahm (who at that date adopted a protective pseudonym against potentially accusing devotees). During the 1990s, from the age of 16, this American was sexually molested for several years after being “oiled” (on the genitals) by Sathya Sai. Alaya and his parents were gifted with money and  jewels (also cheap gold watches that soon faded in lustre). His parents later described these offerings as bribes from the guru. The testimony of the victim includes the following:

One time he [Sathya Sai] had his robe completely off and he tried to have anal sex with me, because he came from behind and started climbing up on top of me. (Testimony from Sam Young on the video SEDUCED, exbaba.com, Witnesses tab)

Kevin R. D. Shepherd

May 2014 (modified 2021)

ENTRY no. 27

Copyright © 2021 Kevin R. D. Shepherd. All Rights Reserved.

Marianne Warren and Shirdi Sai Baba

By Equalizer, Gerald Joe Moreno, Marianne Warren, Robert Priddy, Sathya Sai Baba, Shirdi Sai Baba
In the attempt to cement his position against a growing support for myself, Gerald Joe Moreno (Equalizer) resorted to cheating; he supplied a misleading version of commentary relating to an academic book. A 2009 blog of his bore the title of Marianne Warren PhD Criticised Kevin RD Shepherd. This attack blog was flawed by a typically obsessive mindset, even using once more an out of context and obsolete quote (from my first website) about which I had complained in 2007. This kind of deceptive presentation can be described as entirely lacking in scruple.
The late Dr. Marianne Warren (d.2004) authored a book on Shirdi Sai Baba, namely Unravelling the Enigma (1999). Moreno chose to emphasise brief criticisms she had expressed about an early book of mine, while relegating her acknowledgement of discoveries I had made. He wrote as though I had not mentioned the Warren criticisms, and could thus be accused of dishonesty. Moreno cited a single brief comment from one of my web articles. He followed this up with the assertion:

Kevin Shepherd omitted Marianne Warren’s criticism about him and only snipped out those sections that suited his big ego.

This is a violation of fair comment, revealing a polemical agenda that is extremely misleading.

The Moreno commentary exhibits a total  ignorance of what I wrote at some length elsewhere, including my web article that same year on Shirdi Sai Baba (especially note 43). In my book Investigating the Sai Baba Movement (2005), I gave much space in text and annotations to Dr. Warren’s version of Shirdi Sai Baba, covering both the areas of agreement and disagreement between her and myself. That book (page 320) has a total of 25 index references to Dr. Warren, all of these being omitted by Moreno.

Moreno (SSS108) had even tried to ban the same book from Wikipedia. The reason was my favourable reference in that work to his opponent Robert Priddy, a leading critic of Sathya Sai Baba. Moreno had not read this book and was entirely unconcerned with the major part of the content, which he consigned to oblivion in 2006, via a Wikipedia User page.

Warren’s main criticism related to references I made about the Indian commentator B. V. Narasimhaswami. The context of those criticisms actually originated with Meher Baba. In this respect, Dr. Warren was at a disadvantage, being unable to locate a certain Indian periodical which included a diary of pressing relevance. I had cited that periodical in my annotations to Gurus Rediscovered (1986), a book which followed an academic practice of placing in the notes the publication data of works cited, thus avoiding the need of a separate bibliography. Dr. Warren commented myopically that there was no bibliography, being concerned to emphasise her pre-eminence in Marathi. The diary that she ignored was in English.

In my later book, I cited from the first edition of Warren’s Unravelling the Enigma: Shirdi Sai Baba in the Light of Sufism (1999). Dr. Warren was then a devotee of Sathya Sai Baba, who claimed to be a reincarnation of Shirdi Sai and a miracleworker. Some of her controversial beliefs in that direction were represented in her book (and viewed critically by many other Indologists).
Moreno (Equalizer) ignored the contents of my 300-page book. He also completely ignored the fact that Dr. Warren had been influenced by her partisan approach to Sathya Sai Baba, whom she rejected shortly after her book was published. Dr. Warren then became an ex-devotee, horrified at the allegations of sexual abuse which became well known at circa 2000,  via such critical reports as The Findings of David Bailey (exbaba.com, Findings tab).

Dr. Warren contributed a revised edition of her book in 2004. She emphasised her new orientation in the revised author’s preface, eliminating glorifying references to Sathya Sai Baba and instead making critical comments such as:

From an early age he [Sathya Sai] chose to ride the coat-tails of the Maharashtrian sage [Shirdi Sai], linking his name with that of the earlier Sai Baba in numerous speeches he gave in the 1940s and 1950s, and by taking the name ‘Sai,’ affixing it to his own name of Sathya.

Dr. Warren intended to go much further in a denunciation of Sathya Sai Baba. She planned to write another book in this context; the introduction survives (formerly online at saibaba-x.org.uk/7/W/index). Her death prevented new accomplishments.

The Equalizer (Moreno) “hate campaign” strategy, of omitted details, is not to be recommended. The cult attitude distorts history and commentary, acting as a hopeless guide to both.
Kevin R. D. Shepherd
ENTRY no. 24
Copyright © 2014 Kevin R. D. Shepherd. All Rights Reserved.

Findhorn Foundation

By Conny Larsson, Findhorn Foundation, ICSA, Sathya Sai Baba, Stephen J. Castro
In September 2009, Equalizer produced a blog entry glorifying the Findhorn Foundation. This was evidently intended as a counter to my criticism of that “commercial workshop” organisation.
This development aroused speculation that Equalizer (Gerald Joe Moreno) was an affiliate of the Foundation. Meaning as a consequence of the former association of the Findhorn Foundation with Sathya Sai Baba. The activity of “channelling,” under the auspices of Sathya Sai, had been popular in that new age centre. The critical assessment of “channelling” can be severe. 
Critics observed that Moreno’s elevation of the Foundation contradicted his loudspeaker critique of ex-devotee Conny Larsson, whose “workshop” activities were to some extent reminiscent of the Foundation counterpart. Moreno mentioned approvingly such controversial workshop exemplars as Caroline Myss, William Bloom, Eckhart Tolle, and Neale Donald Walsch. All of these entrepreneurs had made appearances at the Findhorn Foundation, with Myss and Bloom being regular attractions. On the internet, Eckhart Tolle TV became regarded by many critics as another “new age” consumer distraction. The “power of now” is a soporific exercise following on from the 1960s Baba Ram Dass inflation. 
A very different approach to the Foundation can be found in such web articles as Myth and Reality. Workshop commercialism was also repudiated by Stephen J. Castro in his book Hypocrisy and Dissent within the Findhorn Foundation (1996). This work was afflicted with a misleading classification by Moreno, even while academic status ICSA (in America) were recognising the merits of that annotated book as an important statement in the face of questionable new age managerialism (despite the CIFAL promotionalism).  
Moreno had erroneously described the relevant publishing imprint of Hypocrisy and Dissent as my own. The real publisher was Stephen Castro. The latter was not a “vanity publisher,” to use misleading Moreno language. Castro demonstrated considerable courage in publishing his book at Forres, in the close vicinity of the Foundation, who were notorious for their extremist reactions to criticism. The Foundation management had even attempted to place a legal interdict upon a former dissident book, though without success. Democracy is not a feature of the American and European new age. 
Gerald Joe Moreno (Equalizer) was so uninformed about events in Forres that he even rendered the logo of New Media Books as New Media Books Ltd, perhaps wishing to give the impression of capitalist vanities. In actual fact, Castro only published two books under that imprint; he was far from possessing company status. As to the content of those books, perhaps a long time will elapse before the “alternative” society arrives at any due recognition of past events and current critical priorities. 

While the Findhorn Foundation were indulging in a putative “channelling” of Sathya Sai Baba, some of his followers were becoming very disillusioned. One of the ex-devotees wrote in an Open Letter to the guru: “[People] should not ever let their children go to Puttaparthi [ashram] or to any place where you, Sai Baba, reside, since they all [the children] would risk being at your altar of sex.” Testimonies of sexual (and paedophile) abuse are more realistic than “channelling” fantasies.

The significant Open Letter to the abuser observed that the well known sentiment of “Love All Serve All” amounted to “Hurt All – Rape All” (Conny Larsson, Open Letter to Sathya Sai Baba, 2000, exbaba.com). The same epistle noted the tendency of Sathya Sai and his devotees to openly state that “your rapes and molestations are of divine nature.”

The apologist tactic of Moreno was designed to offput attention from the sordid details of sexual abuse and other forms of affliction.

Kevin R. D. Shepherd 
March 2014 (modified 2021)
ENTRY no. 21 
Copyright © 2021 Kevin R. D. Shepherd. All Rights Reserved.

Conny Larsson and Sathya Sai Baba

By Bedroom Murders, Conny Larsson, Puttaparthi Ashram, Sathya Sai Baba
Conny Larsson
On a website, I reported an address given by ex-devotee Conny Larsson at a FECRIS conference in 2006. In this relevant talk, Larsson furnished information concerning sexual abuses achieved by his former guru Sathya Sai Baba (d.2011). Equalizer (Gerald Joe Moreno) reacted to my report by accusing me of endorsing Larsson’s “new age” activities. I had not done anything of the sort.
There followed a tiresome spate of Moreno online accusations about my supposed support for Larsson’s fashionable and exotic “workshop” roles. I was obliged to refute this apologist tactic in a new web article. That article described Moreno (Equalizer, SSS108) as an internet terrorist. 
The idiosyncratic reasoning of sectarian Gerald Joe Moreno preferred to assume that, anyone who mentioned what an ex-devotee said, was necessarily in agreement with all the thinking and behaviour of the other party. This very illogical exercise in attempted stigma was patently ridiculous. Strongly visible on Google were blog idioms of Equalizer such as “Shepherd’s desperate and shameless justifications and cover-ups for psychic medium Conny Larsson.” All this amounted to an apologist recourse of superficial rhetoric. 

I have never been in contact with Larsson, merely reporting relevant details about which he knew at firsthand. Those details can be encapsulated here by his well known observation that the Puttaparthi ashram of Sathya Sai was the scene of “a paedophile ring.” Larsson himself was encouraged by the guru into a homosexual relationship (with Sathya Sai) for five years.

Larsson’s book Behind the Mask of the Clown is very revealing. He relates how Sathya Sai sexually molested him in a private interview, explicitly wishing him to keep quiet about the new relationship. Larsson eventually discovered that he was not the only one in this predicament; there were many others. The guru even paid sexually exploited students and devotees, desiring their attention at this intimate and secretive level.
Larsson also says that the four men who died in the notorious bedroom murders at the Puttaparthi ashram (in 1993) were victims of sexual abuse whom he had known personally. This otherwise concealed dimension of a well known event serves to explain at least some of the gruesome details. 
Close analysts remarked that the “Larsson complex” of Moreno served as a distraction from the testimonies of sexual abuse by victims of Sathya Sai Baba. In trying to divert attention from the numerous reports of abuse, Moreno invented fantastic scenarios which he imposed upon critics. He described this ruse in terms of “exposing” the critics.
Conny Larsson wrote a significant Open Letter to Sathya Sai Baba, dated October 2000. This document should be more widely analysed by competent psychologists who are not fooled by the web antics of apologists like Moreno. The Swedish ex-devotee first encountered Sathya Sai in 1978, with the consequence that he was lured into an oral sex relationship with the guru for five years. In 1986, Larsson witnessed an episode in which a 23 year old Western visitor retreated from sexual molestation. That visitor left the ashram, became depressed, and later committed suicide. As the years passed, Sathya Sai increased his predatory sexual activity “with younger and younger boys.”
Those Indian boys faced severe problems in their situation at schools and Colleges existing in the name of Sathya Sai Baba. Molestations by the guru were very numerous,  accompanied by the incomprehension of devotee parents who disliked complaints against Sathya Sai. Larsson wrote to the predator: “Your own students, both in Brindavan [near Bangalore] and in Puttaparthi, started to confront us Westerners with this unpleasant news” (Open Letter Conny Larsson to Sai Baba, exbaba.com, Witnesses tab). Partisans like Moreno, and the more prominent Dr. Michael Goldstein, served to maintain the plight of victims in stranglehold situations of paedophile dimensions.
Kevin R. D. Shepherd
February 2014  (modified 2021) 
ENTRY no. 19 
Copyright © 2021 Kevin R. D. Shepherd. All Rights Reserved.

Kevin RD Shepherd Not a New Age Promoter

By Conny Larsson, Equalizer, Findhorn Foundation, Gerald Joe Moreno, Sathya Sai Baba

Sathya  Sai  Baba
 

The Pro-Sai campaign of Gerald Joe Moreno entailed an excessive and blanket denunciation of all critics of Sathya Sai Baba and himself. This activity involved an acute tendency to misrepresent his opponents.

The misleading blogtalk of Gerald Joe Moreno (alias Equalizer) presented me as a “New Age Promoter.” In a 2008 blog bearing this title, I was assailed as “a vanity self-publisher and author whose writings mostly revolve around (or include numerous references to) the Findhorn Foundation, Stanislav Grof and Holotropic Breathing.” 

This judgment reveals an acute misconception, or manipulation, that is not supported by my writings. Not having read my books, Moreno invented capricious themes of an extremist nature. My first website did frequently mention the Findhorn Foundation (in a critical context), and to a lesser extent Grof, but that factor is no gauge of my output as a whole. 
A related peculiarity was the assertion of Equalizer that “Kevin Shepherd typically references Kate Thomas (aka “Jean Shepherd,” his mother) and Stephen J. Castro in his writings.” Uninformed readers gained the impression that all I wrote about in my books and web articles were my mother and one other writer. The convenience of this contraction for Pro-Sai polemic was considerable, at the expense of truth. See further my bibliography of books and web articles
In the same blog, Equalizer arrived at the disputed conclusion that “these verifiable facts leave Kevin Shepherd looking rather pathetic and foolish and reeking of hypocrisy.” This demeaning verdict appeared in the same paragraph as the incessant Moreno theme that I had endorsed the “psychic trance medium Conny Larsson.” I had done no such thing, as inspection of my output will reveal. 
I had merely cited the FECRIS report of ex-devotee Conny Larsson concerning sexual abuse on the part of Sathya Sai Baba (d. 2011). In contrast, the Larsson workshop adventures in “psychic trance” and Vedic mantra may well amount to confused ex-devotee activity. Such lapses could hardly be more objectionable than the vituperative polemic of an aggressive blogger like Gerald Joe Moreno. 
Kevin R. D. Shepherd 
ENTRY no. 18 
Copyright © 2014 Kevin R. D. Shepherd. All Rights Reserved.

Robert Priddy and VK Narasimhan

By Robert Priddy, Sathya Sai Baba, V. K. Narasimhan, Wikipedia
V.K. Narasimhan and Robert Priddy, 1994
Gerald Joe Moreno (Equalizer) was a militant supporter of Sathya Sai Baba (d.2011). He maintained extremist descriptions of ex-devotee Robert Priddy, a retired academic in Norway. Moreno wrongly presented  Priddy as an LSD advocate. Priddy had taken LSD long before in the 1960s; his own report invalidates the accusation. “My involvement with LSD ended many decades ago.” The LSD defamation was spread extensively on the web by the cyberstalker tactics of Moreno, who was confronted for his infringement of copyright.
Moreno bracketed me with Priddy, to the extent of creating a blog feature entitled “Kevin Shepherd and Robert Priddy.” I was presented as a virtual accomplice in Anti-Sai crime with the leading Western critic of Sathya Sai Baba. In actual fact, I had never met Priddy. I was not an ex-devotee (or devotee), but an independent critic. I merely corresponded with Priddy during the period of Moreno web aggression (2006-2010). I was sympathetic to his substantial dissident data; Priddy was informative to a surprising degree. However,  I did not share his outlook as a whole, which tended to be sceptical in the materialist sense (there is abundant latitude for scepticism, but this does not have to be “materialist” to possess validity).
In 2006, a Wikipedia article on Priddy cited my book Investigating the Sai Baba Movement (2005). This development prompted a censorious Moreno campaign in my direction, at first on a Wikipedia User page. When I objected to this treatment, Moreno (SSS108) targeted me at his notorious website. I was even depicted by Moreno as participating with Priddy in a “constant bashing of Sai Devotees as liars.” In reality, I protested against the aggression and manipulation of Moreno, which commenced against me on Wikipedia.
Moreno (Equalizer) made elaborate complaints that Priddy had made huge mistakes in his report of V. K. Narasimhan (d.2000), a devotee of Sathya Sai Baba who lived at the Puttaparthi ashram. The idiom was: “It is entirely possible that Robert Priddy fabricated or embellished information about V. K. Narasimhan to further his venomous campaigns against Sai Baba.” That was one of the more restrained Moreno assertions.
When inspecting the relevant materials, I found that Moreno was avoiding the crucial point. I expressed this disagreement on my first website, as a consequence being treated to a volley of attack strategy that quickly showed on my Google name listing. Moreno asserted that one of his webpages provided “concise and damning information about him [Priddy] that proves he is not credible.” The word proves was here rendered in bold print, part of the blog tactic designed to emphasise Moreno key words as being unassailable.
The attack was extended in such phrases as: “Robert Priddy’s attributions to V. K. Narasimhan are subjective and non-verifiable hearsay.” The word subjective was here emphasised. Nobody was supposed to argue with such finality of judgment; to do so was a crime of major proportions and an offence punishable by libellous blog campaign.
The Equalizer blog “Kevin Shepherd and V. K. Narasimhan” was typically tyrannical and condemnatory. For example, “Kevin Shepherd’s position about V. K. Narasimhan undermines his self-professed integrity and highlights his bias and unsupported viewpoints.” I had never made a case of professing integrity, instead objecting to the misrepresentation achieved by Gerald Joe Moreno.
Priddy published online his early diaries dating from the 1990s and earlier, when he was a devotee of Sathya Sai Baba and in personal contact with Narasimhan (the content formerly online at saibaba-x.org.uk/16/Priddy’s_Notes). These diaries furnish adequate proof of his contentions. Priddy himself was at first puzzled. “My very first discussion with Narasimhan… left me perplexed, because he openly ridiculed those who insisted that Sai Baba was omniscient and omnipotent.” Moreover, Narasimhan “always harboured doubts about Sathya Sai Baba’s extravagant assertions” (quotes from saibaba-x.org.uk/16/Narasimhan_RobertPriddy).    
Narasimhan was an atypical devotee, formerly a journalist of repute; he is reported to have been deeply critical of varied events and policies relating to his guru Sathya Sai Baba. This instance serves to underline that prohibitive mandates about “what could not have happened” require due caution in the analysis of guru phenomena.
Narasimhan was blind in his right eye. Sathya Sai had advised him to have an eye operation, but Narasimhan  left the hospital before the doctors advised. His eye became swollen. The guru applied holy ash (vibhuti) in his accustomed manner. Instead of a miracle cure, the swelling increased, and the sufferer was soon blind in that eye. In many other instances, Sathya Sai tended to avoid medical treatment, as a consequence becoming notorious outside the ranks of devotees.
The critic Basava Premanand referred to cases of promised cures that never occurred. Because of Sathya Sai, patients frequently did not seek medical assistance. This guru affirmed that cancer could only be cured by the grace of God, a belief closely associated with his own proclaimed identity as an avatar (divine incarnation). The official journal of his movement, Sanathana Sarathi, declared that the best treatment for cancer was to abandon doctors in favour of the Puttaparthi guru. Critics concluded that Sathya Sai was ignorant of cancer; he gave “incomprehensible medical advice.” Ex-devotee Faye Bailey reported that his counsel “nearly caused permanent damage to her, before she at last resorted to Western medical treatment” (All Boys are Golden – The Untold Story, 2009, exbaba.com).
Kevin R. D. Shepherd
January 2014 (modified 2021)
ENTRY no. 17
Copyright © 2021 Kevin R. D. Shepherd. All Rights Reserved.

Timothy Conway and Gurus

By BBC Secret Swami, Equalizer, Gerald Joe Moreno, John Hislop, Michael Goldstein, Sathya Sai Baba, Sathya Sai Organisation
Timothy Conway
In 2008, Equalizer (Gerald Joe Moreno) described me as “a staunch Anti-New Age advocate and Anti-Guru advocate.” He made no mention of the fact that I had composed such books as Gurus Rediscovered (1986), which provided sympathetic biographies of two Indian saints, including Shirdi Sai Baba (d.1918). The polemic of Moreno was geared to conveniences of attack format, as distinct from reliable detail.
The above description comes from a Moreno blog ridiculing Dr. Timothy Conway, a prominent American ex-devotee of Sathya Sai Baba (d.2011) who was deeply concerned about the sexual abuses reported of his former guru. The Moreno criterion for censure was here: “Kevin Shepherd blindly referenced him [Conway] although Timothy Conway is a true believer and promoter of Gurus.” Numerous other beliefs were added. This very strained argument was part of the apologist campaign of Moreno. 

There are different types of “guru.” To his credit, Dr. Conway lodged a strong criticism against the American guru known as Adi Da Samraj (d.2008), whose validity he repudiated. Moreover, his account of this disconcerting entity included a detail neglected in some other accounts, namely that Adi Da was “an avid drug-user over many years.” The website of Conway is also critical at some length of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh (d.1990), alias Osho.
Conway became an ex-devotee of Sathya Sai Baba in 2001. He is strongly associated with a BBC confrontation in 2004 with Dr. Michael Goldstein, the Sathya Sai Organisation official who allegedly patronised (and paid) Moreno. Both of these doctoral entities subscribed to beliefs about gurus. In contrast to Conway, Goldstein became notorious for evasion on the subject of sexual abuse, which the BBC documentary Secret Swami did much to highlight. 
Gerald Joe Moreno (Equalizer) again resorted to misrepresentation. He wrongly stated that “Shepherd often attacks New Age believers and Guru promoters as being brainwashed and mentally sick.” Basing himself on this misrepresentation, the Pro-Sai campaigner accused me of discrepantly citing “New Age believers and Guru promoters” against Sathya Sai Baba. Therefore I was wrong. 
The argument is inane that guru supporters cannot be cited by critics who disbelieve in Sathya Sai Baba. Moreno had accused me of being incapable of formulating a sober argument. The sobriety of Moreno argument was in strong contention throughout his web tenure of 2004-2010. His Pro-Sai tactic of justifying a controversial guru, via the use of bludgeoning and defamatory verbiage, is not convincing in the slightest to non-devotees. 
Dr. Conway is an advocate of non-dualism (an outlook associated with Hinduism). His approach to Moreno was relatively amiable by comparison with some other ex-devotees. However, this made no difference to the hostility of the attacker. 

Sathya Sai Baba and Dr. John Hislop
Conway refuted the charge of Moreno that the John Hislop letters of 1981 were forgeries. According to Dr. Conway, those letters are important documentary evidence of sexual abuse in the case of Sathya Sai Baba. Dr. John Hislop (d.1995) was an American devotee of the guru who could not believe that reports of abuse were valid. Twenty years later, many ex-devotees accepted the truth of such reports and testimonies, which had increased substantially by that time.
A relevant incident is reported prior to the Hislop letters. In 1970, an American devotee found that Sathya Sai was obsessed with sexual arousal. Tal Brooke reported this episode in his book Avatar of Night (1999), pp. 121-130. His private interview occurred behind a velvet curtain. The guru imposed unexpected gestures of sexual molestation. Brooke at first wondered if Sathya Sai was purifying his “lower chakra,” afterwards discarding such devotee fantasies. “The agitation remained, Baba showed every pant, every tremor of arousal. Why?”

Brooke did not respond to the uninvited arousal. The guru then removed his predatory hand from the private parts of a disconcerted devotee (Tal Brooke was sexually abused, exbaba.com). Many others were less resistant to a figure of authority who claimed absolute divine prerogative.

A handwritten testimony came from a fifteen year old Western victim reporting two private interviews in September 1999. Sathya Sai masturbated him, then “kissed me on the mouth for a long time.” The guru also gave the respondent a gift of 3,000 rupees, saying: “Don’t thank me, I am everything. I am Shivashakti.” Sathya Sai commenced to push his penis into the respondent’s mouth. While engaged in this invasive feat, “he subtly moved his hips back and forth enough times that I lost count” (Statement of a fifteen year old victim, exbaba.com, Witnesses tab).

Kevin R. D. Shepherd 
December 2013 (modified 2021)
ENTRY no. 16 
Copyright © 2o21 Kevin R. D. Shepherd. All Rights Reserved.

Gerald Joe Moreno and Sai Critics

By Barry Pittard, Robert Priddy, Sathya Sai Baba
Moreno (Equalizer) blog depiction of Robert Priddy, 2008
Equalizer (Gerald Joe Moreno) furthered a web campaign of purported exposure. A number of his blogs bore the proclaimer of “Sai Critics Exposed.” The Sai reference denotes Sathya Sai Baba, not Shirdi Sai Baba (I had then written two books featuring favourable accounts of the Shirdi entity, but Moreno lore and libel completely ignored these).
The contested Equalizer blogs also bore an explicit campaigning motto, worded as: “Campaign to Stop Anti-Sai Activist’s Abuse.” This motto was deceptive. Anti-Sai was a favourite slogan of Moreno, who declared his own orientation in terms of Pro-Sai. The “abuse” here referred to testimonies of sexual abuse, plus other problems, in relation to Sathya Sai Baba (d.2011). Moreno did not recognise the validity of testimonies from ex-devotee victims.
There were nine Moreno blogspot features pillorying “Sai Critics.” Seven of these were ex-devotees, including retired academic Robert Priddy and Dr. Timothy Conway. Reinier van der Sandt (the Dutch musician) was not an ex-devotee; he was described to me as a webmaster of exbaba.com, a major website for critique of Sathya Sai Baba. I was the only non-activist represented. The attack and defamation was thus being extended into the public sector. I was not an ex-devotee, nor a web activist against the guru. However,  I was definitely an objector to Moreno tactics in my direction. 
Three images of myself were used by Equalizer (Moreno) in a much duplicated composite. That triple image is symptomatic of cultist excess. Ex-devotee Robert Priddy received a despising pictorial representation as a primitive ape-like creature. Of course, nobody was supposed to show an image of Moreno, as he prohibited this practice, in relation to his sole known photograph. 
Another ex-devotee on the hit list was Barry Pittard of Australia. He was treated to a very misleading “exposure” as a sexual aberrant. Moreno misrepresented data on a website to mean that Pittard was guilty of “paedophilia,” a verdict posted on yahoo.com. The rebuttal was so decisive that the accuser was obliged to retract his allegation, an action that “was most grudging and manipulative in its wording – a single line buried among a mass of self-justification.” Moreno continued to post his defamation on his website and also bulletin boards. See Defamation of Barry Pittard
In 2008, I had cause to comment: “It is very obvious that Moreno’s belief in the priority of Sathya Sai Baba entails a categorical dismissal of any criticism as being a manifestation of perversity or conspiracy.”

The numerous testimonies of abuse have withstood denials, providing a realistic guide to events that cannot be dismissed because of devotee preferences to the contrary.
A well known testimony was made by Hans de Kraker. In the interview room at Puttaparthi, he found that Sathya Sai Baba promised to give him everything. This transpired to be a dubious honour. The ex-devotee related:

He [Sathya Sai] now takes my head, and pushes it quite firmly into his groin…. Now I am holding his buttocks and wonder what the hell my divine master is asking me to do! I let go my arms and now I am even more shell shocked… he pulls up his dress [robe], presents me his half-erect penis and invites me to take up my Good Luck Chance. “This is your Good Luck Chance.” I am now on my knees facing his erect penis, being asked to perform oral sex [the guru now insisted that the reluctant devotee take a “Second Good Luck Chance” in this sordid procedure]. I refuse and get up without saying anything. I am now angry, confused and dazed…. A very clever manipulator and professional deceiver had just trashed the fundamentals of the past eight years of my life. (Personal Experiences from Hans de Kraker, 2000, exbaba.com, Witnesses tab)

Kevin R. D. Shepherd 
December 2013 (modified 2021)
ENTRY no. 14 
Copyright © 2021 Kevin R. D. Shepherd. All Rights Reserved.

Kevin RD Shepherd Not An Academic

By Craig Gibsone, Cyberstalking, Equalizer, Findhorn Foundation, Gerald Joe Moreno, Holotropic Breathwork, Sathya Sai Baba
Craig Gibsone
Gerald Joe Moreno (Equalizer) was incensed when some ex-devotees (of Sathya Sai Baba) described me as a scholar. He went to elaborate lengths to snub this classification. His blog Kevin RD Shepherd is NOT an Academic appeared in 2009, and notably capitalised the negative word.
Since 1983, when I first emerged in print, I have made clear that I am not an academic, both to avoid confusion and to allay any grievances of specialist academics. The Equalizer treatment of this issue, in 2009, was memorable even by the vehemently distorting standards of Pro-Sai web campaign:
Kevin R. D. Shepherd is a sectarian bigot who obsessively, unremittingly and fanatically attacks and stalks everything and everyone affiliated with the Findhorn Foundation. 
Equalizer (Moreno) here relinquished completely any credence to accurate reporting. It is well known that I am not a member of any sect. My criticisms of the Findhorn Foundation do not come under the sectarian category, as is obvious to diligent readers. Nor do I criticise “everything and everyone” affiliated with that organisation.
Informed readers concluded that the extremist Moreno assertion closely reflected his own ill-repute as an obsessive  stalker of “Anti-Sai” critics and ex-devotees of Sathya Sai Baba (d.2011). Moreno was much more than a troll, gaining the repute of a cyberstalker who went to almost unbelievable lengths to blacken the reputation of his adversaries. For instance, he was reported to distort images of ex-devotees, and to harass victims by emailing their contacts with adverse portrayals. He targeted Google name lists with multiple entries visibly agitating against the victims. At one time there were seven hostile Moreno web entries listed in a row on my own Google listing,  with many others following in a more scattered density.
The peculiar spite of Equalizer (Moreno) was evidenced in his concluding remark at the NOT blog. “The only thing that trumps Kevin R. D. Shepherd’s non-academic role is his big ego.” Equalizer also had a non-academic role, referring to Moreno in the third person, and making many mistakes in his vituperation. The lack of context in his stigmas became a source of amazement, not merely notoriety.
Equalizer urged that my “big ego” was proved by my pointing out the lack of academic credentials in others. The only instance he supplied was that of Craig Gibsone, an influential member of the Findhorn Foundation. No further information was given. The missing context is relevant here.
I had indeed criticised Craig Gibsone, and more than once, but not for a mere lack of academic credentials. The reason was because Gibsone had been disastrously influential in pioneering commercial Grof therapy (Holotropic Breathwork) in Britain. He could only be offset by the combined warning of Edinburgh University and the Scottish Charities Office in 1993. Even this setback did not prevent Gibsone’s further resort to dubious “workshop” practices of hyperventilation, connoting a medical risk. I had pointed out that Gibsone and his team did not possess medical credentials in their “new age therapy” pastime, a deficit posing a potentially substantial risk. See further my Letter to BBC Radio, dating to 2006.
Medical doctors considered my objection to be perfectly valid. However,  in cult lore, such reservations are caricatured in terms of “big ego.” To extend that argument in due proportion, the Equalizer category of “big ego” discrepantly covers many medical doctors, psychiatrists, and other professional parties of scruple. Ethical complaint at discrepancy is set at naught by cult lore, an endangering activity involving a blanket dismissal of criticism and a hate campaign against any objector.

Observers of this situation pointed out that the Moreno (Equalizer) slurs, aimed at diverse victims, comprised an attempt to distract attention from the “allegations” of sexual abuse made against Sathya Sai Baba. The solid testimonies are revealing.
A well known testimony came from Jens Sethi, a German who encountered Sathya Sai Baba at close quarters during the 1990s. In the notorious interview room at Puttaparthi ashram, “he [Sathya] commanded me to remove my trousers, unzipped my fly and went with his right hand into my underpants. Sathya Sai Baba the divine touched and massaged my genitals unasked. He expected some erection, but this didn’t happen for I did not feel any sexual excitement, no lust in the presence of a seventy year old man. I was really disgusted. Then he had the impudence to say, ‘It is very weak, don’t waste energy.’ When I looked at him I realised the truth about him and was shocked indeed” (Experiences of an ex-Sai Baba devotee I, exbaba.com, Witnesses tab).

Sethi continues his narration of events:

I came into contact with other devotees who had similar and even worse sexual experiences [with Sathya Sai], and came to the conclusion that there is indeed a pattern of behaviour towards his victims. First he establishes contact and checks the devotional potential of the devotee. Afterwards, once he has decided to molest a person he starts by kissing the same [on the lips]. The next step is massaging the genitals with oil or vibhuti [sacred ash], and finally [he] is masturbating them. In the end he asks [the victim] to do oral sex! This is nothing but the truth. Also, [there are] testimonies from Indians who have been sexually molested through Swami [Sathya Sai] even in the early seventies [1970s]. Now it becomes evident through many testimonies that he had sexually molested and raped young boys for a very long time.  This made me very sad and it broke my heart…. To cover up the awful incidents, he builds more and more buildings to distract innocent devotees from his evil motive. He wants to become more famous than Krishna and is after name and fame. (Experiences of an ex-Sai Baba devotee II, exbaba.com, Witnesses tab)

Some Western victims tried to justify their plight by inventing bizarre justifications. The oiling ritual was invested by these alarmed devotees with supposed significances of “kundalini energy,” a Tantric theme becoming popular in the Western new age. This excuse also became associated with the Sathya Sai action of kissing the lips. Some victims referred to the “balancing” of kundalini, a fantasist belief in Western sectors created by entrepreneurs.

Apologist devotees subsequently resorted (by 2006) to a belief that “spiritual healing” was being accomplished in sordid activities of the interview room and the bedroom. Others denied that the abuse had ever occurred. Sathya Sai himself apparently favoured the “spiritual healing” interpretation. A prominent Dutch devotee insisted that the abuse was a remedy for “karmic debts and sexual lust” (Dogged Denial).

Western victims were often very confused. One of these was Gerald Joe Moreno, who early stated that he had experienced the oiling ritual in 1988, at the age of eighteen. The Pro-Sai activist subsequently attempted to justify (and to ignore) such guru eccentricities, which complicated his apologist tactic. Ex-devotees pointed out the discrepancies. This was no proof of their “big ego.” To the contrary, they were opposing a guru who claimed to be God while pursuing phallic and paedophile preoccupations in numerous instances. One devotee justification for all discrepancies was the assertion: “Swami (Sathya Sai) is God.” They were repeating the guru’s own inflated emphasis.

Kevin R. D. Shepherd

December 2013 (modified 2021)

ENTRY no. 13
Copyright © 2021 Kevin R. D. Shepherd. All Rights Reserved.

Missing Image of Gerald Joe Moreno

By Gerald Joe Moreno, Reinier van der Sandt, Robert Priddy, Sathya Sai Baba, trolls
An ex-devotee version of the forbidden Moreno image
In the normal way, I would supply an image of my subject. Unfortunately, in the case of Gerald Joe Moreno (alias Equalizer), this proved very difficult while he was alive. There is only one known image of Moreno that has ever been reproduced online. This originally appeared on one of his sites, and was subsequently preserved by ex-devotees of Sathya Sai Baba.
The image of Moreno reveals a handsome man, apparently in his early thirties, with neatly groomed hair in conventional style. There is no “hippy” look or anything else suspicious. However, when I reproduced this image on my first website in 2007, the subject reacted strongly, even sending me an email demanding that I withdraw his image.
Some time elapsed before I could fathom what was going on. I consulted my web host, who commented that there was nothing wrong, according to British standards, about reproducing an image, providing that the image was not tampered with in any way. So I retained the image of Moreno, especially as there was no other form of visual identification for names like SSS108 and Equalizer. 
I also consulted ex-devotees of Sathya Sai Baba on this matter, a contingent from whom the image was derived. I was informed that there had been much acrimony about images between Moreno and ex-devotees. Some of the latter had suffered distorted images at the hands of Moreno. I was shocked by this revelation, being supplied with proof that appeared on the web.

Reinier van der Sandt with an imposed large nose. Courtesy Gerald Joe Moreno.
Sathya Sai critic Reinier van der Sandt and ex-devotee Sanjay Dadlani are well known victims of image distortion. Moreno embellished their respective images with a big nose and exaggerated breasts. Robert Priddy also received extremist treatment in a notorious depiction.
One rumour circulated that Moreno feared exposure of his image in case anyone disfigured this, as he himself had done with the images of ex-devotees. Another interpretation is that he was simply averse to being recognised in his private life, also during his travels in India to the Puttaparthi ashram of Sathya Sai. Whatever the precise reason, he continually aggravated against my use of his sole image. He declared that this image was copyrighted and must not be used by anyone.
Eventually Moreno contacted my web host, proving so insistent that this agent now advised me to remove the image. I did so forthwith, deleting the Moreno image from all three sites where this was showing. That development occurred in April 2010. Certain other parties were pointedly rebellious against the prohibition by Moreno; they  continued to show his image
Many people noticed that, despite my polite gesture of removing the contested image, Moreno (Equalizer) continued to display three of my images in a derogatory context of blog defamation. The “triple image” of myself was displayed on both his major attack site and his blogspot extension.
Critics say that, by refusing to concede the need for standard procedures of visual identity, Moreno justified his classification in the category of trolls, who are adversely noted for their visual anonymity. 
Kevin R. D. Shepherd 
ENTRY no. 11 
Copyright © 2013 Kevin R. D. Shepherd. All Rights Reserved.