Desperation

Having directed thousands of investigations as a New Mexico State Prosecutor for over 25 years, I was so impressed with AOB’s utter lack of professionalism and understanding of how to do a most basic investigation, that I simply could not believe that they had ever been granted a required license to do investigations. So I checked. They are in Pittsburgh, and the State of Pennsylvania does require a license for anyone to do private investigations. What I discovered is that not only do they not have a license, they do not even have the minimum qualifications to apply for a license. In short, what they are doing is illegal.

I do not know for sure what happened. But there are only 2 possibilities. The first is that our Leadership (sic) and their lawyers were not told by AOB when they were hired that they did not have a license and what they would be doing was against the law. Considering the enormous amount of money that they were going to make, it must have been easy for them to just shut up and not tell the Leadership and their lawyers that they did not have the required license and that the investigation would be illegal. The second is that they were told and the Leadership and lawyers just didn’t care that it was an illegal investigation.
I can only assume that at some point the Leadership and their attorneys became aware that AOB did not have a license and that the entire investigation was and is illegal. If there did come a time when they knew that the investigation was illegal, they then would have decided that they were so desperate to get a Report that they continued to direct and pay for this illegal investigation. Throughout history desperate people’s moral compass have been guided by the justification in their minds that the ends justify the means. But they never have, they never will and they do not here and now. If you have any doubt about this, ask CRT and the SSSC about their complicity in this illegal investigation. In their announced new age spirit of transparency, honesty and sharing, they need to tell you.
If the Report concludes that YB was a sexual predator, because of how incompetent, unfair and unprofessional the investigation was, the conclusions will simply not be credible or reliable. If because of additional information that AOB may have received that has not been made public, the Report concludes that it cannot say that YB was a sexual predator, because of how incompetent, unfair and unprofessional the investigation was, those conclusions will also not be credible or reliable.
If there were a protest march about this, one side would be chanting:
Unfair, incompetent and illegal!!
Unfair, incompetent and illegal!!
Unfair, incompetent and illegal!!

The other side would have a double chant:
We don’t care!!
We don’t care!!
We don’t care!!
It’s who we have become!!
It’s who we have become!!
It’s who we have become!!

EPILOGUE
The community (family) that we were 6 months ago no longer exists. I am not a politician, and I do not need to win popularity contests. I have only from time to time written what I deeply believe from what life has taught me.
And this has not been an academic exercise. I have lost some relationships that I honored and that had been developed and nurtured over many decades, some very, very personal. But I came across one of the guiding principles of my life a long time ago in high school when I read Polonius’ advice to his son Laertes: “This above all: To thine own self be true. And it must follow as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man.”
It is time for me to move on from this format, and I bid thee Farewell.

3rd Time Confronted with Allegations

Guru Terath Singh Khalsa served as the Chancellor for Sikh Dharma, for over 30 years.  These are his words about the controversy surrounding allegations of sexual misconduct by Yogi Bhajan, shared on February 28, 2020.

If this is the first time you have engaged with these allegations, it is a gut-wrenching experience. There is a deep desire to want to believe a woman – or women – who say they were sexually abused and assaulted by a powerful man. And, for those of us – including me –who spent decades assimilating the SSS’s (Siri Singh Sahib aka Yogi Bhajan) teachings and personally interacting with him on an ongoing, regular basis regarding important matters, it seems inconceivable that he would have committed these monstrous and evil acts. But it has happened – Bernie Madoff and Elijah Mohammad are prominent examples. In his recent book, Malcolm Gladwell refers to these people as mismatched personalities.

This is the 3rd time that I have been confronted with these allegations. The 1st time was 40 years ago in the 1970s when Time Magazine notified us that they wanted to give us an opportunity to respond to a story about YB (Yogi Bhajan) and 3HO (3HO Foundation) they were going to publish. The article stated that what YB was teaching was not Sikhism, that yoga had no place in a Sikh’s life, that he was sexually promiscuous and many other things generally describing him as “a charlatan and a heretic.”  The SSS had me as Chancellor conduct an internal investigation and contact and have numerous meetings with the Time reporters, giving them documentation that there was no basis for many of the allegations. It didn’t matter. Except for misquoting me, the story went out as originally drafted, and life went on.

As a New Mexico State Prosecutor for 25 years, I was involved in thousands of investigations regarding whether the State should take action against the licenses of health care professionals – doctors, dentists, psychologists, as well as CPAs, real estate agents, etc. I was also a Judge for the State Public Education Dept. for 20 years in cases whether charges were brought against licensed teachers and administrators. The stakes were very high. There was the need to protect the public from offenders and there was the possibility of stripping innocent people of their livelihoods after years of education, training and practice. They had to be done fairly and right. In the typical “he said-she said” sex cases where both people could be believed, investigations would look at other things and interview other people regarding what the parties did, said and wrote in the context of the sex claim to try to determine who was credible.

The 2nd time I was confronted with these allegations was 30 years ago when Premka (author of “Premka: White Bird in a Golden Cage”) and Kate filed lawsuits against the SSS alleging that they were helpless, brainwashed victims of his treachery. I had worked with Premka for over 10 years on a regular basis as we and so many others were laying the foundation for all that exists today – the beginning of the Khalsa Council, development of the local and international Sikh Dharma, 3HO and KRI organizations, the purchase of Ram Das Puri, the beginning of the India school program, relationships with the India Sikh bureaucracy, the beginning of the businesses, etc. I knew her.

For me Premka’s case was easy. She alleged in the lawsuit that the (kundalini) yoga that YB taught subjected her to a “thought reform (brainwashing) program.” She claimed that while many creative publications went out under her name (“Peace Lagoon, “Beads of Truth,” etc.), she “exercised no independent thought,” that “she was not the creator of the thoughts,”, that in most cases “she had no independent knowledge of the facts, ideas or feelings she related when she wrote,” that she was nothing more than a “robot” and a “scribe,” and that ”she performed no in depth analysis.” She hired “experts” who would testify about the brainwashing effects of doing kundalini yoga that deprived her and others of the ability to exercise independent judgment. Many of these “experts” were associated with deprogramming kidnappings that occurred in the 1970s and 80s.

Now apparently “many” women are saying that they were victims of similar assaults.

How does any conscious person respond to these allegations?

Fortunately, societies have been confronted with these problems since time eternal. When done with dispassionate analysis, they have been done successfully. The ”Boston Massacre” case is an example. When done with preconceived beliefs regardless of the facts, there have been horrific results (the Salem Witchcraft Trials). To examine and understand this phenomenon, read “Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds,” describing some of the most widespread and accepted delusions in human history.

There is a most basic approach that has been used. Before jumping to conclusions and aligning with others of similar beliefs, find out what did or did not happen. There have been all kinds of uninformed, emotional responses – it happened! It didn’t happen! All of these good faith reactions have been published to the world before even one thorough investigation of these claims has been completed.  Not one. The result is that some of the Siblings of Destiny are beginning to form a circular firing squad, and that is dangerous.

And yet, without an in depth attempt to get to the bottom of this, the first “official” communication that went out to the world was: ”Credible allegations concerning sexual misconduct…”  While the allegations are clearly serious, no one – no one – knows if they are credible without a thorough investigation.

It is time to step back, take a breath and before making one of the most important decisions of your life, wait until you receive the results of what is hoped to be a professional, competent and unbiased investigation of the claims. Anything less is a disservice to you, your family, your students and each other.