29 December 2005

Sai Baba in the Upanishads?

A colleague recently emailed me about the following passage, as spoken by Sai Baba in the 'Conversations' book by Dr. John S. Hislop:

"According to the astrology of ancient times, the change in world conditions to be brought by Swami's influence will come in about 15 years [this conversation was in December 1968]. This was predicted 5600 years ago in the Upanishads. The coming of Baba, the Sai Avatar, which includes the three incarnations, is all forecast quite clearly."

My colleague observed that it is now 37 years since Sai Baba said this to Hislop, and that no noticeable change has occurred in world conditions. He also wanted to know what I thought about the reference to Sai Baba in the Upanishads, noting that no devotee has presented any Upanishadic reference in all these years to support this claim.

Here is an extract from my reply:

"I actually have a compilation of the major Upanishads in one volume, that was translated by Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan who was a former President of India. Although I haven't read it entirely, I have looked at most sections of it in my studies of other subjects and I can say that I have never come across a reference to either SB or his triple incarnation.

"Given that this compilation (which I incidentally bought from Sai Towers in Puttaparthi!) contains translations of all the major Upanishads as well as a few minor ones, I think that the only refuge for SB devotees would be to declare that the Upanishad which supposedly predicts the triple-Sai avatar is no longer extant due to the vagaries of time. For obvious reasons, this claim would be invalid since they'd have no proof that a 'lost' Upanishad with no title or author ever predicted the SB-avatar!"

As an afterthought, it occurred to me that is is quite possible for Sai Baba's devotees to engage in deception. Careful observers will notice the cat-calls against a questionable 'Allah Upanishad', which was arguably invented by Mughal scholars in a bid to convert "those dumb Indians" at the time of Mughal rule in India. It is quite possible for Sai devotees to engage in a similar deception, suddenly discovering the "lost" Sai Upanishad which bespeaks of the the glory of Sai.

Some individuals have tried to create their own 'Upanishad'. There is the well-known 'Sathyopanishad' that is available in print from the ashram bookshop, and I understand it has been serialised on some devotional mailing lists. As far as I know, this text contains conversations between Sai Baba and his discourse translator Prof. Anil Kumar.

All in all, and in the absence of any evidence, this little comment from Sai Baba can serve as an example of either another false prediction or a typically baseless self-glorification.

Copyright © Sai Baba EXPOSED! 2005-2007. Discuss this post!

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