The Evolution and Impact of Demigods
The last three decades have been witness to the evolution of an exclusively new class of Babas or demigods in India. Their devotees consider them as gods. These five-star Babas preach about myths, prayers, morals, Yoga, meditation, divine remedies, etc. The prominent reasons of the sudden rise of this divine service agency are as follows: human miseries, poverty, injustice, ambitions, faith, illiteracy, devotional channels and almost negligible fear of Indian law.
Today, most people have developed never- ending desires in almost every aspect of their life, may it be education, carrier, prosperity, luxuries or relationship. Ambitions, possessiveness, arrogance, greed and jealousy are the major motivating forces behind many humans’ behavior today. The preference for individualism over community has rendered the common person lonely and depressed. Furthermore, sedentary lifestyle has exposed people to new diseases like obesity, diabetes, hypertension, heart diseases, cancer, mental illness, etc. Modern medical scientists have many drugs to control, but not to cure these illnesses; consequently, people look towards Yoga or some divine remedies. While a simple physical exercise, say a daily walk of 4 km, may provide a far better relief than any Yoga.
In short, today, most people are facing one or other misery, and when they could not find some scientific remedy, they resort to the divine one through some Baba. Since almost every Baba claims that he/she has the remedy for every problem under the sun such as difficulties in study, employment, marriage, business, court case, property, rivalry or health. In fact, the concept of Babas among Hindus is not a new one; however, with the help of television they could catch a very big audience that too for peanuts against the gain.
Almost all the Babas are big hypocrites: they teach ancient knowledge to the devotees, but utilize modern technology for themselves. They oppose the scientific inventions about gods and religions; however, they enjoy the fruits of science very frequently. They use most modern communication and transport, do not look towards the gods for their illnesses, and enjoy the most modern medical facilities, including cosmetic enhancements.
They proclaim that their lives are devoted to serve the poor, but they themselves live in well- equipped palatial abodes like business tycoons. Many such a Babas earns more than one million rupees a day; nevertheless, they tell the masses to lead a life of contentment and asceticism. These Babas are not even following gods and religions, since they commit sins frequently. For example, they frequently teach that each human must refrain from ego, lust, anger, greed and passion for worldly things. On the contrary, most of them harbor all these human instincts more abundantly than the masses do.
In order to attract people, these Babas behave like skilled politicians during their orations. They are very good orators and marketing the concept of gods, like clever sales agents. The magnitude of their fake promises ascertains their success: frequent and bigger claims predict greater success. Most of these Babas do not have even the basic knowledge of science and religions. For example, one day Baba Ramdev taunted the scientific discovery of evolution, ‘British claim that monkeys are the ancestors of humans. Yes, the forefather of British may be monkeys but not ours!’ Obviously, he has not yet read basic science. This Baba often teaches Yoga and diverse remedies to some 10,000 people at his sermons, without a formal education. On the contrary, a doctor in India has to study for over 10 years to legally prescribe medicines. In India, to practice medicine without a valid medical degree is a punishable offence; however, the Baba does not bother to heed the Indian laws.
Let’s consider their knowledge of religion; the logo of another famous Baba Shivanand reads: ‘The Baba teaches the Vedic techniques of meditation that liberate humans from their past karma.’ In fact, the Vedas have not mentioned the concept of punishment for past karma and any meditation to liberate people from them. Even the Buddha, the inventor of Karma theory, did not dare to advise such a meditation to save a person from the punishment of karma. This Baba claims that his meditation therapy can heal any human disease, help in examinations, avoid traffic jams, solve marital discords and all the problems under the sun. This Baba makes a funny claim that his meditation is a science beyond science. This indicate he do not know even the definition of science or doing some chicanery. Science is a knowledge that can be observed, verified or proved. None of his claims about the meditation can be verified, observed or proved. In fact, he is deceiving people that certain god has given him divine knowledge which is a science beyond science.
Amazingly, these Babas claim to heal only the diseases that are not easily curable by modern medicine. The patients of arthritis, diabetes, hypertension, stones, kidney failures, skin diseases, psychosis, sterility, etc., are their preferred targets. On the contrary, they do not claim to cure the simple diseases such as malaria, typhoid or tuberculosis, since the patients would deteriorate soon. Baba Shivanand claims to cure cancer but not malaria. These Babas advertise their claim, through the statements of several fake patients, in newspapers and television channels. For instance, a great Baba often gives a full page advertisement in almost all the newspapers that he had healed 500 million chronic patients with the divine help; the number is far higher than the total chronic patients in India. His promo displays photos of several national leaders, film-stars and devotees to authenticate his fake claims.
Today, science has discovered the cause of all human ailments and has discarded the theory of sins, gods and demons behind diseases. Therefore, all the Babas, who are prescribing divine remedies, are frauds. If they are honest and sure about their teachings they must take an oath that they themselves, their family and devotees will not seek any modern medical help even in emergency. In fact, before preaching religion, one must study science. During all the periods of history, humans tried to explain their mysteries and miseries rationally. And the phenomenon—they could not comprehend rationally—were explained through divine powers.
Therefore, one must read science before teaching religion. To teach religion without knowledge of science is similar to teaching a degree class without going to school at all. Many such Babas have declared that they are the incarnation of a particular Hindu god; obviously, they have no fear of gods. For example, long ago, Satya Sai declared himself as the Avtar of Sai Baba, and began to exhibit his divine powers by simple conjuring tricks. People began to consider his tricks as his divine powers, and he earned more than a trillion rupees and lived a lifestyle of a business tycoon. Surprisingly, the actual Sai Baba never displayed his divine powers and lived an ascetic life. Similarly, Baba Asharam also maintained that he is the incarnation of Krishna; this fake claim fetch him both money and pretty women in wholesale, not retail. His assistants preached the target females that they are going to make a pious conjugal love with Lord Krishna, the universal lover; that would bring them and their family a great fortune.
All these Babas wisely propagate that devotees must have blind faith in them and gods (BFG); this virus is mandatory for the smooth running of their business. It sparks a vicious circle of thoughts in each human mind: if one has BFG then only gods would help them. BFG simply prohibits each person to have any rational thought about gods and the Babas. Such Babas wish to propel people into the ancient era and do not let them learn the scientific fact about gods, in order to fool them continuously.
Many Babas have insatiable lust for money, power, luxuries and/or sex; rather, they chose the profession due to their lust. And they do not hesitate to violate the law e.g. tax evasion, land-grab, claim of miracles, sexual exploitation, sale of blessings and divine-induced remedies. These Babas could commit such corrupt practices in broad daylight, since they have no fear of law with the protection of their political alliances.
We have frequently heard about the corruption of politicians in India; however, it is rare to find corruption charges against a Baba. There is a simple logic, politicians have their rival parties and they often expose each other. On the contrary, most Babas belong to one single party that has one-point program of selling dreams at the price a particular person wishes to buy. For example, all Hindu Babas knew the tricks Nirmal Baba was playing to extract money, but nobody spoke a single word against his chicanery, before he was exposed by media. Similarly, no Baba ever exposed the dirty picture of Asaram, JaiGurudev and many more. Almost all Babas knew that the claim of Satya Sai, to be incarnation of Sai Baba, was a fraud, but none considered his responsibility to inform his devotees. We can assert this for sure, since all Babas must have worshipped Satya Sai, if he was really an incarnation.
Today, these Babas are influencing Indian politics as well. They are having a big following ranging from thousands to millions. Politicians are regularly using them to seek votes and Babas are using leaders to continue their illegal activities. This is very serious threat; devotees never question the opinion of their demigod and they vote as per their order. These Babas would never support an honest, rational and educated person, who would not support their illegal business.
In fact, the corruption of Babas is far bigger than politicians, since they grab the hard earn money of an already miserable person. Did we need a Lokpal to control this corruption? Some 50 years ago, Indian parliament passed an act to control the concept of magical remedies. In short, the Act reads: To advertize, claim, popularize any magical remedy is a punishable offence; the violator would get 2-5 years imprisonment. However, there is mushrooming of magical remedies on electronic media, since there is no enforcement of the Act. Today, Indian Government needs to enforce an effective ban on the sale or free advice of divine remedies; these may be amulets, Pujas, Yajna, secret-mantra, etc. There should be a censor board to monitor the lectures of these Babas that may control their chicanery. The law is not enough, people must be taught to recognize their fallacies. We must appreciate media for exposing several Babas and saving many innocents to be cheated.