Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The REAL History of Shr Ram Chandra Mission (Part 1)

Taken and translated from an article by Alexis on his French blog: Le Projet Sahaj Marg

(last updated: Feb., 2010)

Comments and Insertions by 4d-don are in "red italics"

For scans of legal documents,
including both Constitutions and By-laws, both letter of successions (with dated envelopes, interviews of old officials, etc... see this site:

Freedom From Sahaj Marg

For current history and discussions (comments) in English, see: Our World From Another Dimension

For current history and discussions (comments) in French (some English), see Alexis's blog site: Le Projet Sahaj Marg
For current history and discussions (comments) in French see Elodie's blog: Pour Que Vive Le Sahaj Marg
For testimonials and comments of ex-preceptors, see some of their blogs (and comments on other blogs):

Inner Circle of SRCM by Michael (ex-preceptor-USA, member of Publishing Committee),
Pitfalls of Spirituality, by Frank (ex-preceptor, zonal-in-charge for the Netherlands)

For analysis (French) from research psychologist, psycho linguist and ex-abhyasi (18 years), see:
Analyse de la SRCM(tm)

many more important links at: Our World From Another Dimension

New Presentation for 2010

"New religious movements" for the Anglo-Saxon, "sectes nuisibles" for the French, or "new spirituality" for the Eastern world, the words used to describe the current spiritual wealth shows us how the different apprehensions of this phenomenon may differ.

In this changing context of exceptional mutations of the religious phenomenon, here is the example of the incredible saga of nearly 70 years of Sahaj Marg, a global spirituality of Indian origin, based on the techniques of meditation from a simplification of the ancestral Hindu Raja Yoga. (Which the Founder of Sahaj Marg, Ram Chandra of Shahjahanpur (aka Babuji), experienced from a Naqshbandiya Order Sufi (Ram Chandra of Fatehgarh (aka Lalaji) whom he visited a few times only in his early 20's.) The Shri Ram Chandra Mission, an organization responsible for disseminating this (Sahaj Marg) teaching, claims* three masters, Lalaji, Babuji and Parthasarathi Rajagopalachari, the last, a living master.

* See statement by the Dean of NaqshMuMRa, grandson of Lalaji, Dinaysh Kumar Saxena, from reading the journals of his grand-father, claiming that Lalaji has nothing to do with Sahaj Marg and that Babuji was never a preceptor of Lalaji's organization: Epitome of Sahaj Marg. (If document is not available here, then see other links at this site: Sahaj Marg and SRCM Legal and Important Documents

This presentation emphasizes a historical perspective to properly highlight the changes implemented within this movement. It has five parts: a) The Epic of Sahaj Marg, b) Personalities and Trends that have influenced it, c) the Totalitarian Temptation of its Guru and his Followers, d) The Resulting Multinational Shri Ram Chandra Mission, and e) its Current Business Seduction.

The French parliamentary report n. 2468 cites the Shri Ram Chandra Mission in its list of "harmful sects", dated December, 1995. What the SRCM does not say is that it practices a very active proselytism, especially among psychologically fragile people. What it also does not say is that there is often a very rapid onset of strong mental dependence on the Guru and distance vis-à-vis those near to the adherents, family and social relationships. What it does especially not say is that it is hungry (desires?) for real estate as well as spirituality.

This website is a place of independent information. If you are looking for psychological or legal assistance, contact UNADFI or any other victim's defense association.

The Fabulous Epic of Sahaj Marg
In the late nineteenth century, Lalaji met a Sufi master. Together, they founded a syncretic teaching between Hinduism and Sufism, in northern India. In 1945, (13 years after Lalaji's death...allegedly) on posthumous orders by Lalaji (and others, in dreams), (see Autobiography of Ram Chandra) Babuji founded the Shri Ram Chandra Mission and the Sahaj Marga method which spread gradually to the south of India, once it rid itself of its Sufi (Islam) references. After raising Rajagopalachari (The current president of SRCM(California-1997) on a pedestal, in 1982, Babuji, ill and aging, finally appoints his own son (Umesh Saxena) to succeed him. Immediately after his (Babuji's) death (1983) , Rajagopalachari attempts to place himself at the control of the Society (SRCM Shahjahanpur-1945) with the support of followers from the West, while supporters of the son of Babuji continue to develop the Sahaj Marg from its historical stronghold in northern India, at
Shahjahanpur. In 1999, (after having been refused the Presidency of SRCM (Shahjahanpur-
1945), by its Board of Directors, and having re-registered the Shri Ram Chandra Mission) in San Luis Obispo, California, in 1997, and its research arm, the SMRTI in Austin, Texas) Rajagopalachari returns to celebrate the centenary of the birth of Babuji, inaugurating the lavish Manapakkam ashram, near Chennai. Strengthened by his troops of Western followers and the financial power they give him, he (Chari) returns in triumph to his country. But to succeed in this feat, he has generously adapted the Spiritual product of Babuji and exploited without limit the weaknesses of his troops. He has become an autocratic guru, but resistance is increasing ...

First, a Teaching Syncretized From Hinduism and Sufism (1891-1930)
In the late nineteenth century, precisely in 1891, a young Brahmin named Ram Chandra of Fatehgarh , aka Lalaji, meets the master of a Sufi lineage (Naqshbandiya Sufi Order) in India. This encounter between a Hindu and a Muslim is not unique in this northern region of India, Uttar Pradesh, densely populated and heavily Muslim. Their friendship is much more surprising in this politically sensitive time when the inter-communal tensions are exacerbated.
Hazarat or Maulana Fazal Ahmad Shah Khan Raipur (1857-1907), known simply as "Hujur" is the spiritual leader of Tarika Mazahariya. This branch of the Sufi brotherhood of Naqshbandiya created by Mirza Mazhar Zanzana (1701-1781), is permanently implanted in Uttar Pradesh. There is already a kind of syncretism between the major Indian Sufi brotherhoods and certain traditional Hindu teachings.
Hujur already taught equally to Muslims and Hindus. But he will go even further in that direction with his disciple, Lalaji. They highlight the equivalence between Hindu and Sufi spirituality and achieve a new synthesis. Their goal, totally against the current of history, dominated by the identity withdrawal in the face of the British invader, is to abolish the inter-religious boundaries.
The fruit of their work establishes that the primary responsibility for the spiritual evolution of the aspirant rests in the hands of his master, provided he comes into daily contact with his guru through meditation. The Master pours divine energy into the heart of his disciple by releasing him from his impure thoughts. One finds some of the foundations of Santmat, as posited by Kabir in the fifteenth century, as elements of the eleven principles of Naqshbandiya already extolling the silent meditation on the heart and the constant remembrance of God's presence.
Following Hujur, Lalaji becomes the first Hindu spiritual leader of the Tarika Mazahariya, but never converts to Islam. His (Lalaji's) teaching is based increasingly on the Santmat of Kabir and his followers over time. Thus, many of Lalaji's disciples founded the Ramashram Satsang, a kind of syncretism between Sufism and Santmat, which spreads throughout northern India.
In 1930, a year before his death, Lalaji appoints his own son, Jag Mohan Narain, to succeed him at the head of the order, contrary to the desire of Hujur who wanted to see Lalaji's nephew, Brij Mohan Lal Dadaji, succeed Lalaji. He (Jag Mohan Narain) creates for the first time in the hereditary Sufi lineage, a lineage called: Tariq Ramchandriya.
NaqshMuMRA (Sufi tariqa Ramchandriya descendants of Lalaji), Golden Sufi Center (Sufi tariqa from Lalaji's nephew), Ramashram Satsang and Akhil Bhartiya Santmat Satsang (ABSS) (two syncretisms between Sufism and Santmat) are still to this day spiritual movements which claim a direct lineage from Lalaji and his family.

The Sahaj Marga, a Refinement of Raja Yoga? (1931-73)

In 1945, not far away from Fatehgarh, Ram Chandra of Shahjahanpur, aka Babuji, claims to be the only truly spiritual successor appointed by Lalaji.
Different personalities long deceased (apparently) come to him in dreams, which he calls "intercommunications", such as Lalaji, the Sufis: Hujur and Baqi Billah, and the Hindus: Swami Vivekananda, Ramakrishna and Buddha himself. They ask Babuji to create the teachings of Sahaj Marga (easy way, the easy way) (later changed to the "natural path") and to found the organization called Shri Ram Chandra Mission (SRCM) at Shahjahanpur.

Comments and Corretions by Shashwat Pandey:

1. Lalaji was never a part of Sahaj Marg system, nor was he was a brahmin, Lalaji is a title given to "Kayasthya" community in India, and Babuji only claims that he is representing Lalaji, however the authentic lineage of Lalaji and Dinaysh Saxena (Dean of NaqshMuMRA have objected strongly to this publication of yours where you have linked Lalaji to Sahaj Marg. Lalaji does not deserve any mention while referring to Sahaj marg.

You can find an interview of Dinaysh on my site (Freedom from Sahaj Marg) where he has explained the actual teachings of Lalaji, you can download that interview and listen to it for clarity.

Thankfully you have not mentioned Vivekananda in your publications about Sahaj Marg, which is another blatant lie of SRCM.

2. You have also mentioned and have tried to draw a parallel line between Raja Yoga and Sahaj Marg, Raja Yoga of Patanjali is totally different from the practice of Sahaj Marg, and needs not be mentioned, there is no point in promoting a false claim. pls redefine this section.

Babuji physically met Lalaji three times in all, the first time was on June 3, 1922. Everything else is the result of an intercommunication (dreams) that begins after the death of Lalaji in 1931, and then is interrupted to resume in April 1944. Meanwhile, he (Babuji) attended the Ramashram Satsang of Dr. Chaturbhuj in Etah and apparently, that of Shri Krishna Lal Sikandarabad. He also dreams that he went to Kanpur, the seat of the family of Raghubal Dayal Chachaji's brother of Lalaji and father of Brij Mohan Lal Dadaji. According to his diary, Babuji thought that he was surrounded by competitors and enemies. They have (allegedly) even tried
to poison and kill him. Reality or paranoia? Enemies maybe, certainly competitors.
At first, the parents of young Babuji are offended that he is frequenting Muslims. He himself then, with his book "Efficacy of Raja-Yoga in the Light of Sahaj Marg" published in 1947, makes a strategic refocusing of his teachings around Raja Yoga and Lalaji alone, thus omitting any reference to Sufism. It is true that the independence and partition are at the heart of the Indian news of the moment. Later, in 1963, he expresses the same opinion that Sahaj Marga has replaced the various Sufi orders that seem outdated.
As a refinement of Raja Yoga, the spiritual teachings of Sahaj Marga eliminates the difficult first (Steps 1 to 6 of the original "eightfold path" that is Raja Yoga, and Sahaj Marg starts at step 7, according to SRCM literature) stages of meditation, making it easier and feasible for our time. The ten commandments given by Lalaji to Babuji specifies that the practice also has a prayer to recite before sunrise, and at sunset, a repentance for sins committed. Remembering to have a heart filled with love and devotion, the aim is to achieve unity with God.
Babuji begins his spiritual teaching in Uttar Pradesh, where he allies himself with Kasturi Chaturvedi which he soon declares "the Saint of Sahaj Marga". But his notoriety overflows quickly from northern India and spreads throughout the country. Men join in the south, such as Raghavendra Rao, the south-west (Raichur, Karnataka), Dr KC Varadachari, the southeast (Tirupati, Andhra Pradesh), and Parthasarathi Rajagopalachari from still farther south (Chennai, Tamil Nadu).
The meeting between Babuji and Dr. Varadachari quickly turns into a deep friendship. Holder of the famous Vivekananda Chair at the University of Madras, and professor of philosophy, he creates the Sahaj Marg Research Institute (SMRI) in 1965, and contributes to the spread of Sahaj Marga to the general public.
Babuji names preceptors, charged with serving as a channel for the transmission between him and his disciples. In the late sixties, some of them go abroad and begin broadcasting the Sahaj Marga. Babuji made his first trip west in 1972, accompanied by Parthasarathi Rajagopalachari. And the Shri Ram Chandra Mission expands.
Dr. Babuji Varadachari warns Babuji in 1970, about the risks of the drifting of the teaching, due to its expansion, but he dies the following year. And Babuji is old and tired too, he is 75 years old in 1974 when he is hospitalized in Lucknow. The previous year, Kasturi Chaturvedi, Raghavendra Rao and Parthasarathi Rajagopalachari proposed to him to assist in his spiritual work. Kasturi would deal with the north, in the south would be Rao, and Rajagopalachari would be in charge of "outside India", but Babuji refuses and continues to travel tirelessly.

(See selected excerpts of Autobiograpy of Ram Chandra with comments by Christian (ex abhyasi of 17 years with Chari, and a research psychologist and psycho-linguist), published by SRCM (Shahjahanpur-1945) and compiled by its president: SP Srivastava.)

The Sahaj Marga, the Power Games (1974-84)

Babuji first prepared his great friend, Dr. Varadachari as his own successor. But the latter died before him, on January 30, 1971, leaving him embarrassed. He then draws closer to Rajagopalachari who became his disciple in 1964, appointing him secretary of the Mission in 1970, and everything seems to be going well between them. But suddenly, everything changes in 1982. Babuji makes serious accusations in a letter dated April 6 and appoints another secretary in his place June 28.

In September, very sick and weak, Babuji writes from Paris that some are plotting to take over the assets of the Mission. He accuses Rajagopalachari of trying to poison him repeatedly for eight years. He finally adds that the latter is presenting himself to Western disciples as the future president of the Mission, whereas he has secretly appointed his own successor. Again... reality, paranoia or simply senility?

Babuji was (allegedly) sick, delirious and could not walk alone. The doctor who accompanies him confirms that he should never have undertaken this journey in light of the state of his health. Rajagopalachari, meanwhile, becomes silent and aggressive but the French André Poray steals the show in Paris which does not leave him indifferent, not to mention the accusations of Babuji.

Babuji dies on April 19, 1983. At the gathering held the following July 10, two suitors appear. The eldest son of Babuji, Prakash Chandra, has nominated his son, Sharad Saxena, and Parthasarathi Rajagopalachari presents a copy of his letter of appointment dated March 23, 1974. The working committee defers its decision until February.

February 84, Rajagopalachari takes advantage of the anniversary of the birth of Lalaji and goes to Shahjahanpur, but it is made clear that he is not welcome and must withdraw from the ashram. The committee then meets without his presence. At its meeting on 6 and 7 February, the new Secretary General SA Sarnad suggests that the committee be chaired by the Dean, PC Chaturvedi. (judge and father of Sister Kasturi) Both the candidatures of Sharad and Rajagopalachari are rejected because of deception (forged letters of succession?) . The committee states that the letter of Rajagopalachari was postmarked at an earlier date than that which was inside and that Babuji had once complained (to the police) of the disappearance of four signed blank SRCM letterheads. Sarnad then presents to the committee the secret letter of appointment brought up by Babuji and it designates another of his sons, Umesh Chandra Saxena, dated April 16, 1982. The committee examines it, validates it and declares Umesh Chandra as President. Sarnad is instructed to issue a circular announcing his appointment that is ratified at a general meeting before 982 members on 8 february, 1984.

According to supporters of Rajagopalachari, Kasturi (see interview with Kasturi and/or transcript) and Canadian Donald Sabourin (now deceased) were witnesses to his appointment. The son of Dr. Varadachari, KC Narayana (retired state chief financial officer) said that Babuji announced in 1979 that he should work closely with Rajagopalachari after his death. He (apparently) also said that Babuji declared as late as 1980 in Munich that he would leave him the power. And everyone (many) agrees that the children of Babuji did not participate in collective weekly meditations, and have never shown any sign of interest in things spiritual.

But Parthasarathi Rajagopalachari, a southern man, smoking American cigarettes and very westernized, is not at all appreciated by the senior preceptors. In 1981, two of them, Raghavendra Rao and Ramachandra Reddy, tour the United States in a non-official capacity, accompanied by Umesh Chandra Saxena, who is not even a preceptor. Critics also argue that Rajagopalachari was stripped of all responsibilities by Babuji, and they add that he (allegedly) accompanied Babuji without his consent on his last tour of France, saying to Danish disciples that he would be President before the death of Babuji.

Then, is the letter of appointment of Rajagopalachari a fake (forgery)? Did Babuji dismiss Rajagopalachari of all his functions? Does he rightly accuse him of the worst atrocities or is his letter from Paris the fruit of delirium and senility? Why did his family begin by nominating Sharad July 83 before bringing forward the secret letter of appointment of Umesh Chandra? These questions will probably remain forever unanswered.

By designating his son, Babuji stated that he would become president of the Shri Ram Chandra Mission Shahjahanpur and the spiritual representative in line of succession. In his letter of accusation, he stated that he would be assisted in his task by Narayana, SP Srivastava and two other disciples. But Umesh Chandra temporarily cedes his place to SP Srivastava, the newly elected but not appointed president, to avoid further disruption of the organization. The latter then presides from Shahjahanpur and tackles the publication of the Journal of Babuji.

Rajagopalachari secedes, brings together another committee at Hyderabad, which appoints him the president, then he presides from the Ashram in Chennai in southern India, and travels the world seeking support. Narayana remaining faithful to the request of Babuji of 1979, betrays that of September 82, and he rallies behind Rajagopalachari and refuses to assist Umesh Chandra. It is then the turn of Sarnad to join the clan of Rajagopalachari, thus interrupting the spread of the circular attesting to the appointment of Umesh. Rajagopalachari, meanwhile, contacts the preceptors appointed by Babuji, ordering them to recognize him as President, otherwise he sacks them.

In Europe, some followers of Babuji completely lost, follow Andre Poray, while begins a long legal battle between Umesh Chandra Saxena and Parthasarathi Rajagopalachari for the presidency of the Shri Ram Chandra Mission and control of the ashram of Shahjahanpur.

Sahaj Marg Conquers the World (1984-2004)

Parthasarathi Rajagopalachari, called Chari or more affectionately Chariji by his followers, is seeking the legitimacy that he lacks. He is familiar with the Western culture and masters it perfectly. Graduated with a bachelor of science degree, he spent two years in Yugoslavia and then started to work in chemical engineering (plastics). Soon, he joined the Indian industrial conglomerate TTK Krishnamachari & Co, where he managed its subsidiary Indian Textile Paper Tube until his retirement in 1985. His work has led him to travel the world on numerous occasions, representing his country at an International Conference on ISO in Switzerland among others. A clever entrepreneur, he knows how to lead men and manage his affairs.

Constantly traveling, he travels to all the continents, making the West his bridgehead. He woos his disciples and they are quickly subjugated by this man. They find him charismatic and with a strange look, both penetrating and disturbing, in a word, fascinating. They follow him everywhere, rush to his feet, ask him his opinion on everything and anything and display his portrait in their homes. The seeds of the cult of personality are all there, he will cleverly exploit it to enhance his appeal and the dependence of his disciples who progressively become enslaved followers.

He changes the spiritual practice, its definition and its history and makes it more responsive to his needs. Once he has codified and ritualized the practice, and established the legend and the spirituality as a standardized product, the brand Sahaj Marg ™ is filed with the U.S. Agency of Commerce (U.S. Patent & Trademark Office) July 29, 1997. To top it off, the statutes of the SRCM, a California society, are deposited in his stride.

Rajagopalachari names preceptors with a vengeance, not on their spiritual profile but by their ambition and their pushiness. He practices an unbridled proselytism, asking them to constantly recruit new followers. According to Babuji, the goal was to reach the critical size necessary for the changeover of humanity through spirituality. He galvanizes his forces of preceptors having previously "guilted" them for their lack of results. They must increase the numbers, more and more sales, always the numbers. The preceptors then sink into the fear of displeasing the Master, never able to do enough to win his affection. A permanent malaise that he cultivates carefully.

The strategy of the seduction of Westerners used by Rajagopalachari and his management methods proves effective, if we are to believe the figures put forward by one or the other. Lalaji had 100 to 200 followers, Babuji about 3,000 and 180 preceptors. Rajagopalachari brings that number to 20,000 in 1991, 50 to 55,000 by 1995-97 and 75,000 in 2000 with approximately 1,500 preceptors. Many centers are open in Denmark, France and Switzerland, Canada and the United States, South Africa, Australia, Malaysia, Singapore and Dubai.

With his Western success, Rajagopalachari is therefore all-powerful in India and able in 1999 to celebrate the centenary of the birth of Babuji. On 30 April, he inaugurated the Babuji Memorial Ashram, at Manappakam on the outskirts of Chennai, an ashram on five acres that can accommodate 13,000 people inside the meditation hall.

For its part, the Shri Ram Chandra Mission (Shahjahanpur-1945) has not been as successful. Elected in 1984, and re-elected in 1990 SP Srivastava publishes the second part of Babuji's Journals (May 44 to June 55) in three volumes that appear from 1987 to 89. In 1994, Umesh Chandra Saxena is elected to replace SP Srivastava, but will soon no longer carry unanimous support. He does not work, uses the money from the Mission to support the lifestyle of his family, and invites corrupt politicians for rowdy parties. Raghavendra Rao and Srivastava distance themselves, as well, Andre Poray in France.

The defections have not spared the Rajagopalachari clan. KC Narayana, (son of Dr. Varadachari) who took over the head of the Sahaj Marg Research Institute (SMRI) founded by his father abandons his post in 1991 to found the Institute of Sri Ramchandra Consciousness (ISRC) in Hyderabad. He criticizes Rajagopalachari for letting develop the cult of a (his) personality and refuses to recognize him as the spiritual representative of Babuji. Kasturi Chaturvedi says much the same thing in a memorable speech on 30 April, 1995, before the followers of Rajagopalachari assembled in Chennai. Having never played any administrative role, she takes a little more distance and retires to Lucknow.

In reality, Rajagopalachari was never completely absent from his country, but he was confined to his southern stronghold of Chennai. To establish his legitimacy, he includes on the list of his preceptors, celebrities like Kasturi and the grandson of Lalaji, Dinesh Kumar Saxena, with or without their consent. He develops valuable relationships with prominent Indians. He incorporates his own working committee with representatives of the judiciary, police officers and entrepreneurs.

With his domestic support and the money that comes from his Western troops, he does not hesitate to take by force, ashrams run by his opponents. As early as 1984-85, his henchmen seize the ashrams of Visakhapatnam, Nellore and Vadodara. In 1988 it was the turn of the ashram in Allahabad and in 1991 of Delhi and Moradabad, even to a first aborted attempt in Shahjahanpur in 1997.

If one believes interested persons in the know, the return of Parthasarathi Rajagopalachari to India is an overwhelming success and is crowned by a resounding victory over his rival organization, the Shri Ram Chandra Mission (Shahjahanpur-1945). In 2003, he announces that the number of his disciples has multiplied by three in three years. From 75,000 in 2000, it has passed 200 to 300,000 by 2003-04.

The Dusk of a Multinational That Has Reached its Peak (2005-09)

Parthasarathi Rajagopalachari easily attracts more than 50,000 people during the great annual ceremonies organized to celebrate his birthday. According to my estimates, regular adherents are almost as numerous, but the SRCM registered in California (in 1997) must have more than 150,000 contributors. With the nebula that revolves around the Sahaj Marg, it could well reach some 500,000 supporters around the world.

The Sahaj Marg of Rajagopalachari is also a small empire of land, housing and financial. In 1997, Umesh Chandra Saxena estimated its wealth at some 200 million euros when it declared having 55,000 followers. If the property has followed the same trend as the membership, it is now nearing the billion. Dozens of ashrams, retreat centers, a research and training institute, an international brand Sahaj Marg ™ ... The organization that manages this multinational with the largest opacity is composed of four foundations created between 1994 and 2004: Switzerland, the United States, India and Dubai. To which are added two new societies for managing his school in 2005 and a trust for the publishing of his publications in 2009.

Intoxicated with his power, Rajagopalachari uses and abuses it without limits. Thus in 2003, his minions are trying again to seize the ashram of Shahjahanpur only four days after the death of Umesh Chandra Saxena (poison?). They again attempted with success on April 2, 2006 and also capture the Raichur ashram after the death of Raghavendra Rao. Rajagopalachari went himself to Shahjahanpur in October 2007 to mark his symbolic victory. Billing himself the only living master of the Sahaj Marg world, he imposes his will on the alternate currents as well as on his own followers. (see scans of newspaper articles on Freedom from Sahaj Marg, and interviews with Babuji's Family on Youtube)

Pushing all limits, he no longer asks his followers to obey and serve. In 2005, using only their trust, he launched a campaign of sales of € 250 per practitioner for a book whose content is not disclosed. In 2007, the subscription goes to 1,200 USD for an equally secret gift of which the only beneficiaries will be the first donors. In 2009, he announces the limited release in three new volumes in the three years following the 2005 luxury-version book, that he describes as the New Bible or the Vedas of Sahaj Marg, always at a price of 250 € each, which he prohibits any new issue before 2030. (The books: Whispers From the Brighter World, is a series of channeled messages from beyond the grave by an anonymous French Lady Medium ... The spirits who send the messages are allegedly: Babuji, Lalaji, Chari's mother, Chari's wife and other "elevated spirits")

With his heritage and his power over men, he goes in search of the external recognition that he lacks for certain respectability. To do this, he flirts with the UN on the humanitarian and educational themes. In humanitarian terms, he opens some ashrams in India to providing free care and food distribution, the centers of light. On the education side, from a paper prepared by the institute created by Varadachari, he broadcasts the spiritual values of Sahaj Marg in hundreds of Indian schools in 2005 and then he founds his own school, Lalaji Memorial Omega International School (LMOIS) .

The same year, his organization joined the Department of Public Information of the UN (DPI). In 2009, the SRCM is organizing a national written composition competition in all Indian schools in collaboration with the Information Center of the UN for India and Bhutan (UNIC) on the occasion of the International Youth Day of August 12. This action, undertaken by the SRCM only since 1989, has mobilized nearly 75,000 children and youth participants from 10 to 24 years in 2008. (See template of letter to UNDPI)

All smiles, but suddenly in October 2008 from Dubai, he declares a fiscal austerity and freezes all future projects at the beginning of the global financial crisis. In January, to general surprise, he says that a cancer is eating away at the Sahaj Marg from the interior and that the organization is threatened with disintegration. He thinks his preceptors, imbued with their hierarchical position, do not do quality work. The discipline is everywhere, there are divisions between communities, centers of dissidents who call themselves faithful to Babuji but ignore the Mission. In short, he has nightmares where he sees the SRCM disintegrating into"240 small missions" because of lack of discipline.

Reality, senility, or paranoia? Financial crisis, moral crisis of ego or is there any crisis at all? Has he reached the point of no return? In any case, an atmosphere of "end times" reigns.

Indeed, Parthasarathi Rajagopalachari is aging at his turn. He celebrates his 80th anniversary in 2007, two years after designating his successor, Bengali businessman, Ajay Kumar Bhatter, to quell the internal strife. But this does not mean "entente cordiale" at the top of the hierarchy. All goes well as long as he is there, but tomorrow? His opportunistic lieutenants are biding their time. His only son PR Krishna, the wealthy heir, AK Bhatter, the designated successor, Santosh Khanjee the "eminence grise" or even AP Durai (retired Policeman) U.S. Bajpai and his henchmen, all are biding their time.

Among the followers too, all is not well. In 2005, he eventually triggers a forced reaction by always asking for more money. A book sold at 250 € each, and auctions are held during the group meditation at international gatherings at Vrads Sande, Denmark and Lignano, Italy. This is too much. In January, not able to speak freely internally, a desperate Swiss abhyasi opens a web blog entitled: "Pour que vive le Sahaj Marg, débarrassé des dérives de la Shri Ram Chandra Mission", soon followed by others. The myths that he had built are exposed one after the other.

In January 2007, Navneet Kumar Saxena comes at his turn on the web. He is the son of Umesh Chandra Saxena, grandson of Babuji and president of the Mission, elected after them. He informs that the legal battle brought by his father against Rajagopalachari remains unresolved. He accuses, and presents official documents in support. Disciples of Raghavendra Rao and Kasturi Chaturvedi open blogs and accuse them too. Dinesh Kumar Saxena, grandson of Lalaji, creates a website. KC Narayana, son of Dr. Varadachari, customizes his. SP Srivastava creates an association. In France and Canada, abhyasis who followed Andre Poray and Kasturi reveal on the web that there exists independent communities of followers loyal to the teaching of Babuji, still very much alive today.

(See: Freedom from Sahaj Marg for scans of many "legal documents", newspaper articles, and telephone and video (youtube) interviews, etc...)

The market shares of Sahaj Marg are enormous and they will soon be for the taking. Everyone is excited, and some sometimes say and do anything. As the person who has remained anonymous, but published in September 2007, on the web an accusation of rape, incest and pedophilia without anyone knowing exactly who was involved, all the wildest hypotheses being considered. So why bother? And this is probably not finished ...

* * *

Babuji occupies a good half of this historical epic of more than a century as traced here in its most salient features, while Rajagopalachari dominates the last quarter century unchallenged, despite his opponents. The Sahaj Marg that came out of the confidential teachings of Lalaji is not yet 70 years old, but it has already spread across the globe.

The legend of the transmission of spiritual power that Rajagopalachari put in place occults the power struggles of succession between the Masters, that have afflicted the movement at every moment. The spiritual derivative product has evolved considerably. De-cultured, de-territorialized and standardized, it retains not much more now than the mere characteristics of a meditation technique. The initial attraction of Westerners for real Indian spirituality will not resist the general trend towards globalization and individualism. The Indian and Western followers are increasingly individualistic, not really looking for more spirituality, but only a tool for personal development, such as meditation or yoga.

From Spiritual Master to Totalitarian Guru

The master transmits the divine energy to the heart of his disciples. He holds a central role in what makes the specificity of Sahaj Marg by Rajagopalachari. He is the sole repository of a considerable "spiritual" power. History shows that every change of master has been accompanied by a rough period of transition where the suitors have all shown their audacity to seize this unique spiritual power.

We know little about the events that followed the death of Lalaji but Babuji in his diary records that he is surrounded by "competitors and enemies" who attempted on his life. Obviously, they must be Masters of Ramashram Satsang or family members of Lalaji, among whom he spent time between 1931 and 44. Much later, he claims that Rajagopalachari has made attempts on his life on several occasions between 1974 and 82, that is to say since he came into possession of his letter of appointment as "president of the system of Sahaj Marg ".

Babuji's paranoia? Political history teaches us that a man of power is figuratively a true professional killer, paranoid out of the necessity and to survive, when that paranoia does not end by devouring him. Would spiritual power obey other laws than political power? The capture of power by Rajagopalachari, is it spiritual or political? Sahaj Marg begins to "drain" (to attract like a sewer drain) a large number of disciples and Rajagopalachari is not immune to the allure of power over men. Similarly, today is the economic power that seems to animate the current contenders. Paranoia always?

Narayana and Kasturi establish a difference between the President of the Mission (as an organization) and the spiritual representative of Babuji. Navneet Kumar Saxena, himself, strongly reaffirms the statutes of the Shri Ram Chandra Mission as decreed by his grandfather, namely that a spiritual representative is established in Shahjahanpur in direct line of succession. He recalls that Lalaji preferred his son to his nephew, and that Babuji preferred Umesh Chandra Rajagopalachari. Babuji and Rajagopalachari have interpreted the spiritual lineage or the hereditary blood ties, so as to achieve their own ends. So, will Rajagopalachari eventually succumb in turn and appoint his son, PR Krishna, or his grandson?

Spiritual power, political and economic power, all tangled in Sahaj Marg as everywhere else . Only the shape of the power evolves from one capacity or spiritual competence towards always more seduction, even to the cult of personality, whether it passes through the related bloodline, as in a monarchy, or not.

Fame, power and money fuel the greed, and complicate the successions. It is a law of history, perhaps even a law of nature. Spiritual gurus are not exempt. The greater the leader, the more difficult it is to succeed him. Lalaji was not a giant, Babuji was not a dwarf. And Rajagopalachari, a totalitarian autocrat?

The history of Sahaj Marg is virtually nothing more than the history of its leadership.

Sahaj Marg ™, a Standardized Spiritual Product

Lalaji and Hujur showed syncretism by going to the sources of Sufism and Hinduism. The teaching that follows was coherent, innovative and not without courage in those troubled inter-religious times. Conversely, Babuji rehabilitated it as a method that incorporates only the last stages of Raja Yoga with undeniable Hindu origins. He showed a formidable simplistic reductionism, and a morbid reluctance (caution) by succumbing to a nationalist ambience. In his contacts with Westerners, Rajagopalachari still more profoundly transformed it.

Of the spiritual practice described in the ten commandments of Babuji, Rajagopalachari retains only certain aspects which suit him more than others. In a slow but permanent shift, he gives the practicant a preponderance that enhances the dependence of the followers, and their adoration of the master. Thus, he reminds his followers that they must keep a daily diary, but says that they must send it to him regularly. Correspond and meet with the teacher are strongly encouraged, as is the group meditation and constant remembrance.

The followers are increasingly dependent on their guru and they adore him. But the ultimate goal remains the merger with the divine. For that to hold, Rajagopalachari then develops an intellectual confusion between the master and the divine. The total abandonment of the follower becomes total surrender to his master, to the sole desire of the guru. Is the "constant remembrance" that of the master or of the divine? The fusion of the believer with the divine transforms itself into the adoration of his guru, he must make him (guru) happy at all costs.

Not content with having changed the spiritual practices and the very definition of Sahaj Marg, Rajagopalachari also revises its history, creating a legend that is simplified and easy to remember. Lalaji invented ex nihilo Sahaj Marg, Babuji his successor has perfected it and Rajagopalachari succeeded him as the last living master, all in a straight transmission line.

The "ten commandments" of Babuji are un-christened, and become mere "maxims". The Sahaj Marga of Babuji, translated as "easy path" (easy way), becomes in the Sahaj Marg of Rajagopalachari, the "natural way" (natural path). The transmission of divine energy by the master to the heart of the believer is built in as a unique specificity, despite its ancient origins. One has pased from a path of easy access (easy way) to a narrow delicate passage (natural path) to which access is restricted to an elite.

Where Babuji said that spirituality begins where religion ends, and that divine love begins where spirituality is completed, Rajagopalachari replies with the caricature that religion divides whereas spirituality unites. He adds that no knowledge is necessary and that reflection (thinking) hinders the meditation.

Trademarked, the Spiritual Product of Sahaj Marg™ has been standardized. Its objective has been redefined, its history rewritten and its practice codified and ritualized. Decultured, it requires no knowledge or no religion. Dislocated it is accessible to Westerners as well or better than to Indians.

From the teachings of Lalaji, it has passed to the method of Babuji to achieve the extreme oversimplification of the meditation of Rajagopalachari, namely one yoga technique among many others. But it is unique, and difficult and reserved for the elite, says he.

Hyper Individualistic Followers In Search Of A Tool Of Personal Development

The Hindu and Sufi mystics have developed that it was important for a disciple, if he wanted to grow spiritually, to follow the teachings of several masters, as there was so many of them in the past in the districts of northern India. This approach of Eastern spirituality, made up of contemplation and meditation, has attracted many Westerners who reject the traditional religions in their search for meaning and emotional and social ties against the materialism of this dehumanizing society. But India has in turn entered into the global marketplace also, and incorporates Western values even if to a "forced march".

The Swiss preceptor, Wulliemier Ferdinand, the precursor of "spiritual psychiatry", described the Western followers of their meditation as psychologically fragile, "borderline" in psychiatric jargon, often in mid-life crisis. And indeed it is very often women alone, vulnerable in their personal and family life. He added that the occupational categories most represented are medical or paramedical, and to a lesser extent, the education or artistic professions. These followers are of a sociocultural and economic level that is higher than the average, still professionally engaged in often difficult human relations. Fragile, often in psychotherapy, they are navel-gazingly focused on their own egotistical problems.

Thus, these individualistic Westerners, weakened by modern life, succumb to the charm of meditation, a yoga technique, a tool for personal development and well-being among many others. The more easily when a charismatic guru tells them that this spiritual product, unique in the world, is a difficult path reserved for the elite. They are offered what they need most, they are offered a purpose, a community and a Truth. The Sahaj Marg of Rajagopalachari is for them a refuge that traditional religions do not provide them any more, a soothing balm on their more open-face wounds in the face of the most glaring hardships imposed on them in their social and professional life by society.

Not content to find a relative and uncertain psychological balance, the followers of Sahaj Marg are transformed in turn into prescribing therapists with their contemporaries. They combine the techniques of meditation of Rajagopalachari with the most disparate picks in the current esoteric mystical new age and alternative medicine, as well as with the tools of personal development and well-being. Setting themselves up in turn as psychotherapists - one is never better treated than by one's own - they become promoters of psychological genealogy, of gestalt therapy or even coaching.

These mixtures are dispensed by people who are frail and maladjusted, to others just as mentally unbalanced, are sometimes explosive and highly dangerous.

* * *

A French parliamentary report in 1995 compiled a list of "harmful sects" which features prominently the Shri Ram Chandra Mission, while other countries have chosen to declare them of public utility and exempt from taxes.

French Rationalism, often atheist or agnostic, imagines cults everywhere. Conversely, the Anglo-Saxons dominated by born-again evangelicals or New Agers, baptize anything and everything with the symbol of New Religious Movement. Between these two radical conceptions, the traditional Eastern approach of a sensitive and emotional spirituality has re-taken on an air of modernity. But the East of today has little to do with the archetypes that are Auroville or the Buddhism of the Dalai Lama. Globalization, immediacy and individualism has taken them over. The Bollywood of Mumbai and the Indian Silicon Valley of Bangalore have passed by there. Rajagopalachari is the product of the confrontation of traditional Indian values with Western values.

Well beyond its irrational aspects that can tend to lead one to chuckle, it is the finality of Sahaj Marg ™ itself that carries the totalitarian danger the farthest. Self-transformation through meditation, an altered state of consciousness, sublimates the feelings to the detriment of reflection and transports the solution of changing one's self instead of social change and/or civic engagement. Finally, to seek at any price the merger with the divine which is too often confused with the guru, Rajagopalachari is ultimately the greatest danger to his followers. It means the renunciation of one's individuality so as to blend into an ALL that is completely unknown.

When emotion is primary, manipulation is not far. In a world of loss of bearings where there is uncertainty, the temptation to follow a community, its prophet and his messianism is strong. The need for certainty is deeply rooted in us all. Therefore we must learn to keep a critical mind and our free will.

The modern mature individual is one who is autonomous and responsible, who chooses his path and builds his own benchmarks, without any certainty, but with strong convictions.

The REAL History of Shri Ram Chandra Mission (Part 2)

Taken and Translated from research article by Alexis on his French blog: Le Projet Sahaj Marg.

(last updated: Feb, 2010)

Comments and Insertions by 4d-don are in "red italics"

Personalities and Trends Related to Sahaj Marg

The linear transmission of spiritual power from Lalaji to Babuji and then to Rajagopalachari is a legend. (or not true, a fiction, a fantasy ... see Epitome of Sahaj Marg by Dinaysh Kumar Saxena, Dean of NaqshMuMRa and grandson of Lalaji) Things are much more complex. Descendants of Lalaji created the Tariqa Ramchandriya, a new Hindu Sufi order from his teaching. His nephews and his main disciples are behind several more or less syncretic movements between Sufism and Santmat, which spread everywhere, from northern India and to the United States. Since 1984, Babuji's children are engaged in a legal battle without mercy with Rajagopalachari, from their stronghold of Shahjahanpur, and recently publicized it on the web. The senior preceptors of Babuji, meanwhile, took their distances from the two parties since 1994. Fewer and fewer, they move from one group to another of the diaspora of the disciples of Babuji, always very present and refusing any compromise with the followers of Rajagopalachari.

Note: The spelling of names have been deliberately simplified, as it sometimes changes with each documents.

Lalaji, His Family And Their Disciples

Ram Chandra of Fatehgarh, aka Lalaji (4/02/1873-14/08/1931) met his master, Hujur in 1891 and spent 16 years in his company. Hujur (1857-1907) gave him full powers on October 11, 1896, but Lalaji only started teaching in 1911, relates his grandson (Dinaysh Kumar Saxena). His works are compiled in two volumes titled: "The Complete Works of Ram Chandra Maharaj Lalaji. The second volume, published in July 2001 with 7,000 copies printed, relates his Sufi and Santmat experience. Exciting but virtually untraceable, is the subject taboo at the Shri Ram Chandra Mission?

The list of movements which came out of his teaching is fairly long. His grandson mentions five of them: NaqshMuMra, Ramashram Satsang, Akhil Bhartiya Santmat Satsang, Golden Sufi Center and of course the Sahaj Marg. To this list we can also add the movements of Saral Hari Marg of Dr. Harnarayan Saxena (1908-2003) or that of Dr. Chandra Gupta, who also claims the legacy of Lalaji. Their relationship with the Sahaj Marg is indirect, only because Babuji said that it was Lalaji who gave him the order to create this movement.

Lalaji had only one hundred to two hundred followers. Among those who have reached the central region or approached it closer, from the spiritual point of view, some have circulated his teaching from the centers of the movement of Ramashram Satsang, mainly in northern India, Sikandrabad, Gazhiabad, Shyam Nagar, Jaipur or even in Mathura. Derived from Lalaji their power is rooted in the Sufi order of Naqshbandiya, but he later re-integrated it with Santmat (or bhaktimat).

Thus, Ranajit Saheb, 101 years old, and probably one of the last contemporary living disciples of Lalaji operates from Shyam Nagar (blog created April 13, 2009 on http://ramashramsatsangshyamnagar.blogspot.com/). Thakur Ram Singhji (3/09/1898-15/01/1971), who also long frequented Lalaji's nephews Lalaji (Radha Mohan), is operating from Jaipur. Dr Chaturbhuj (3/11/1883-24/09/1957), the most famous of them, was charged by Lalaji to help spread his teaching in 1919, initially from Etah in 1923 and then from Mathura in 1951. Dr Krishna Lalji (15/10/1894-18/05/1970) from Sikandrabad was in turn appointed by Lalaji as his successor in 1921. We note in passing that Babuji has attended the Ramashram Satsang at Mathura and Sikandrabad between 1931 and 1944, where he probably created his "competitors and enemies" (see a collection of excerpts from the Autobiography of Ram Chandra, by SP Srivastava which contains 80% of Babuji's Journals, as opposed to SRCM (California-1997)'s version, which contains 20%... literary "cleansing"??).

Today, the Ramashram Satsang of Jaipur is headed by the son of Thakur Ram Singhji, Narayan Singh, who has chosen to use the method of the great Yogi Aurobindo. The Ramashram Satsang Mathura is headed by the son of Dr. Chaturbhuj, Hemendra Kumar. It has long been present on the web (http://www.ramashramsatsang.org/), as is the Ramashram Satsang of Sikandrabad, but only since February 2008 (http://www.spiritual-meditation.org/).

The father of Lalaji, Harbaksh Rai Chaudhary, had a second son, almost as famous. Raghubal Dayal Chachaji (7/10/1875-7/06/1947) also followed the teaching of the Sufi master Hujur. His family is located in Kanpur (Uttar Pradesh) and he has had three son: Brij Mohanlal Dadaji (1898-01, 17, 1955), Radha Mohanlal Guruji (? - 1966) and Jyotendra Mohanlal. Brij Mohan was the favorite of Hujur, who saw him succeding Lalaji as head of the Sufi Brotherhood of Mazhariya, even if eventually, Lalaji preferred (and appointed) his own son.

A disciple of Brij Mohan, Yashpal (5/12/1918-3/04/2000), created the Akhil Bhartiya Santmat Satsang movement in 1969 at Anangpur (ABSS on http://www.abssatsang.org). For his part, Radha Mohan was at the founding of the California Golden Sufi Center of Irina Tweedie and Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee (http://www.goldensufi.org/). Radha Mohan is the 35th in the lineage of this Sufi order. With his wife Sushila Devi, they had three son, Virendra, Satendra and "Baboo" Narendra Nath Saxena. She named her 2nd son Satendra to succeed his father.

As for Lalaji, he had two son and eight daughters. His eldest son, Harish Chandra, died at two or three months. Only the second, Jagmohan Narain (2/11/01-28/08/44) is known to us, Lalaji having preferred him to his nephew Brij Mohan as his successor to head the new order of Mazhariya Ramchandriya (NaqshMuMRa). Too young to succeed him immediately, his uncle Chachaji which took the reins of NaqshMuMRa before him. Jagmohan himself had two son, Akilesh (28/06/41-15/05/74) and Dinaysh or Dinesh Kumar Saxena (born 28/10/44), who in turn succeeded one another in the order the NaqshMuMRa. Akilesh Kumar was not three years old at the death of his father and died before 33 years, but this did not prevent him from creating a periodical entitled "adhyaatma dhaara.

Dinaysh Kumar Saxena, retired from the railway since 2002, aged 65, is the present dean of NaqshMuMRa still residing at Fatehgarh. With his son, Himanshu Vikram, he created "NaqshMuMRa Nexus", a website where he mentions the movements that he believes are related to the teaching of his grandfather (http://www.laalaajinilayam.googlepages. com /). Included in this list is Sahaj Marg, the same way as Dinaysh is listed as a preceptor of Sahaj Marg. And a blog created by Himanshu Vikram shows us pictures of Parthasarathi Rajagopalachari and Dinaysh gathered together in 2006 (http://www.laalaajinilayam.blogspot.com/).

See Epitome of Sahaj Marg on the NaqshMuMRA Nexus web site

On a website created last February 26, 2009 (http://www.adhyaatmadhaaraa.org/) Dinaysh tells us that he has created a charitable organization, the Charitable Trust Laalaaji Nilayam (LNCT). Its goal is to raise funds to rehabilitate the "holy places" that have marked the life of Lalaji and organize tourism pilgrimages. It is therefore planned to renovate the house of Lalaji (laalaaji Nilayam) and increase its capacity to receive, to erect a life size statue of Lalaji and to acquire many other places of worship.

Although both previous movements seem to have no direct link with the Sahaj Marg, the collusion between the grandson of Lalaji and Rajagopalachari is great. And Dinaysh makes it clear that this is the Shri Ram Chandra Mission of Manapakkam (Chennai) and not that of Shahjahanpur. The link is established between Dinaysh and Rajagopalachari, and in no case with the descendants of Babuji, Umesh Kumar and Navneet Saxena, whom he ignores.

Yet in 2009, Dinaysh publishes a Babuji letter dated February 14, 1963 where he clearly expresses his feeling that the Indian Sufism is completely obsolete and is replaced by the Sahaj Marg. One way to highlight the divide imposed by Babuji between the movements from Lalaji and Sahaj Marg. So what is the connection between Rajagopalachari and Dinaysh? For what purpose did he deliberately chose to publish this letter?

And who will be at the head of NaqshMuMRa and LNCT tomorrow? Apparently, the descendants of the brother of Lalaji are excluded. Then, on the basis of blood ties established by Lalaji, will it be the son of Akilesh, Vinay (born 17/07/65) or Samir Kumar (born 30/07/70)? Or will it be the responsibility of the son of Dinaysh, Himanshu Vikram (born 30/06/80), or one of his two sisters, although, are women excluded a priori?

According Shashwat Pandey, who has interviewed him in 2009, Dinaysh would be in fear. His son, Himanshu Vikram, worked in Chennai for HTC Global Services, headed by a close associate of Rajagopalachari. The Shri Ram Chandra Mission has probably invested funds in the LNCT for shares in the house and the Lalaji Ashram at Fatehgarh. Has Dinaysh become a puppet in the hands of Rajagopalachari? He asserted, however his independence in 2008 before the old disciples of Babuji ...

On September 29, 2009, Dinaysh stated that Sahaj Marg is a schism. All the disciples of Lalaji met the philosophy and principles of his teachings, except for the Shri Ram Chandra Mission, where the emphasis has been placed on the living master, which has degenerated into a "cult of a personality". Also according to him, Babuji dreamed of Lalaji in his sleep, nothing more, and then falsely claimed that Lalaji never had a spiritual master.

Finally, it is perhaps Rajagopalachari who wants to take over the official inheritance of Lalaji so that his Sahaj Marg becomes the head of the NaqshMuMRa.

Babuji, and his Progeny of the SRCM Shahjahanpur

Shri Ram Chandra of Shahjahanpur aka Babuji (30/04/1899-19/04/1983) is the son of a senior judge. He contracted typhoid in childhood, studying philosophy and married at 19 years. He met his master Lalaji June 3, 1922, then entered the service of the Court of Justice in 1925. Babuji had six boys and three girls, but three of them died during their childhood. The four surviving boys are named Prakash, Dinesh, Umesh Kumar and Sarvesh Saxena, while his two daughters are named Smt Indira Maya Saxena and Smt Chaya.

His father died in 1933 and one of his uncles decided to manage his property in his place, but Babuji and his brother opposed it and he became their bitter enemy until his death in 1956. He harassesed Babuji, "trying to drag him to court and using the gang to harm him by all means possible," reads the website of the ISRC of Narayana. Babuji had included his young elder son Prakash in the list of founding members of the Shri Ram Chandra Mission, when he registered its statutes in 1945. His wife, who was a "constant irritant", died in 1949 and his second son Dinesh committed suicide in 1958.

In 1980 his son Umesh goes on tour in the U.S. with two full preceptors of his father, Raghavendra Rao and Ramachandra Reddy, with no delegation of Babuji. On April 16, 1982, he secretly designates Umesh as his successor in a letter addressed to him. Yet, everyone (many) agrees that the children of Babuji did not participate in weekly group meditations and have never shown any sign of interest in things spiritual until the early 1980's.

Babuji died April 19, 1983. At the Working Committee which meets in July in the stress that follows, his elder son Prakash presents his own son Sharad as successor to Babuji. This request is rejected by the committee which accepts however, Umesh and his secret letter of appointment of February 1984. The family opens a legal battle against Rajagopalachari who also claims the succession, and the Presidency of the Shri Ram Chandra Mission and all the properties that are attached to it.

They recall the statutes of the Shri Ram Chandra Mission, which stipulate that its headquarters is to be in Shahjahanpur and the president who will take the position will be in line of succession, what they interpret as "blood ties". They add that the purported letter of appointment of Rajagopalachari is false because it is backdated, makes no reference to Lalaji, which Babuji apparently never would have done, and as well, the phrase "President of the Sahaj Marg system" does not mean anything, and that the Canadian Donald Sabourin, the so-called witness to this appointment, could not attend on that date.

Currently in 1984, the state of Uttar Pradesh introduces the legal requirement for registered organizations such as the Shri Ram Chandra Mission, to have elections to elect their presidents. After the vote, SP Srivastava is elected. According to the son of Umesh Chandra Saxena, Srivastava has been appointed Chairman of of the Working Committee, BD Mahajan and his secretary (the latter held the post of Secretary for Indian Affairs since 1982), to avoid an explosion of the movement, because of Kasturi's statements favorable to Rajagopalachari. The ashram undergoes a first failed attempt at a takeover by force by the clan of Rajagopalachari in 1988 .

In 1994, Umesh Chandra is elected President in place of SP Srivastava, and KV Reddy becomes secretary of the Mission. In 1997, another attempt to take back the power from the ashram fails. Umesh is walking armed in the ashram. In 1998, one of his preceptors, who left for the United States to represent him, opens a website titled 'sahajmarg.org'. This gives rise to an additional quarrel with the Rajagopalachari clan. The American Arbitration Commission on domain names delivers an opinion in favor of the Umesh clan, in 2000, but the site is abandoned due to pressure (legal threats) from the Rajagopalachari clan.

Umesh Chandra Saxena dies, November 3, 2003. (poison??) His son Navneet Kumar Saxena is appointed the next president, KV Reddy is confirmed in his post of secretary. The Rajagopalachari clan tries unsuccessfully to seize the ashram again four days later, November 7. At once, one does not enter easily into the ashram, even with express recommendation, the clinic and the Babuji Memorial Public School is closed. Until the ashram is finally taken on April 2, 2006 by the Rajagopalachari clan, which now places at its head, Sarvesh, brother of Umesh. The trial continues, from appeal to appeal, but Navneet decides also to speak on the web in January 2007, first on the blog (http://srcmshahjahanpur.blogspot.com/) then creating his own website 'srcmshahjahanpur.org'. This time, the Indian arbitration panel ruled in favor of the Rajagopalachari clan, in July.

Today in late 2009, Prakash and Umesh have died. Prakash's wife attends the satsanghs led by Kasturi in Lucknow. Sarvesh, who appears with his wife on the list of preceptors of Rajagopalachari had already joined him in 2005, opens the ashram of Shahjahanpur to all those who wish to attend. Navneet's brother, Puneet and his mother have recorded their testimonies against the methods of the Clan Rajagopalachari in videos shot by Shashwat Pandey (see Youtube: Sahaj Marg) . And we are still waiting for the outcome of the trial ...

The Diaspora of Senior Preceptors

Professor of Philosophy now retired, SP Srivastava taught yogic science at the University of Lakhimpur (Uttar Pradesh, India).
His meeting with Babuji dates to 1948-49. He chaired the working committee of the Shri Ram Chandra Mission, Shahjahanpur for ten years, from 1984 to 1994, taking advantage (of his tenure) to publish the second part of the "memoirs" of Babuji. Then he walked away from the sons of Babuji and the teaching of Sahaj Marg. He wanted to abolish the border between so-called hard sciences, yoga and spirituality. To this end, he created an association who's Belgian branch was called Shri Ram Chandra Memorial International Society Promoting Spirituality As A Science (INSPSAAS).

The Shri Ram Chandra Mission Shahjahanpur quickly becomes an empty shell after his departure. Raghavendra Rao and Ramachandra Reddy had Umesh Chandra Saxena accompanied on his tour of the U.S. in 1982, but it was more in opposition to Rajagopalachari as in loyalty to the son of Babuji. The behavior of Umesh is not pleasant and annoys. Gradually, the senior preceptors take their distance. The real Sahaj Marg is now taught by a galaxy of preceptors spread across the country through such a network without head or structure, traveling from one community to another, including abroad.

Raghavendra Rao gave up his place in the Working Committee which he had held since 1984. This full preceptors now remains at his ashram of Raichur in Karnataka, where he teaches the Sahaj Marg of Babuji to all those who come to see him, until the end of his life in the spring of 2006. With the complicity of the police, some armed thugs of Rajagopalachari immediately grabbed his ashram. Shortly after, Suresh Kumar Makam has created a blog to his memory (http://makamsureshkumar.blogspot.com/). Karnataka is rich in old preceptors: in Gulbarga, the full preceptor Narayan Rao, born around 1922, continues his teaching, while Dr. Rao Shiam steps back for some time. In Bangalore, the former judge of the High Court of Justice, the full preceptor Vital Rao, affectionately nicknamed "Judge", also continues his teaching despite his age (he was born around 1924).

Ramachandra Reddy, meanwhile, also abandons his place at the Working Committee and returns to Cuddapah in Andhra Pradesh. The full preceptor creates the Chandraji Shri Ram Maharaj Seva Trust, a separate structure on behalf of the Mission to avoid any legal dispute, and teaches the Sahaj Marg until his death in 2008. This structure is currently headed by lawyer Srinivasa Rao TV. Jogarao a very old preceptor born about 1913, dies the year before at Hyderabad.

In Europe, Poray Andre (born about 1909 and dies at more than 90 years of age) is one of the first Westerners to have met Babuji. First a friend of Rajagopalachari, this full preceptor from Sanary Var (France) took his distance from him in 1980-82, then on tour with Babuji in Munich and Paris. He then established a society under the non-profit society act 1901, called "The Road to Reality" where he taught a Sahaj Marg slightly tinged with Tibetan Buddhism to which he was particularly attached. Rajagopalachari had initially ordered him to join him, before his removal from the office of preceptor, which had given him a good laugh, like other preceptors.

As in India, today there are independent groups in France in Lyon, Tours and Paris, in the south west and the Alps Maritimes, but also in Spain at Barcelona, and even in Switzerland. Each year, a European meeting is held in October in Sanary. These disciples of Babuji receive from time to time the visit of these great preceptors, or attend their meetings in India depending on their whereabouts. In late 2008, Cyrille Roux emerged from the shadows to speak on the Web and make known the existence of their groups. Why?

Narayana and Kasturi, unlike the previous, have always thought that Babuji had prepared Rajagopalachari as his successor as president of the Shri Ram Chandra Mission. Consequently, they never followed his son Umesh. However, they deny anyone the right to proclaim to be the spiritual representative of Babuji, as today Rajagopalachari.

Kasturi Chaturvedi, full preceptor and "Saint" of Sahaj Marg in the words of Babuji, first meets him in 1949. From Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh), she teaches the Sahaj Marg of her timeless master with a certain degree of independence vis-à-vis the Shri Ram Chandra Mission, having always stayed away from its management and administration.

On April 30, 1995, she delivered a memorable speech at Madras (Chennai) before Rajagopalachari and 12,000 of his followers where she first recognized that Babuji prepared Rajagopalachari as his spiritual representative and President of the Mission, adding that Babuji dictated to her his statement of the nomination of Rajagopalachari for the presidency - it is the taking of this position of Kasturi which would have led to the withdrawal by Umesh 1984 and Srivastava was appointed in his place, in order to avoid a possible explosion of the Mission . But after this introduction, all the rest of her speech focused on the fact that she can no longer accept Rajagopalachari as his idol worshipers have made of him with their propaganda.

Interviewed by telephone Shashwat Pandey February 20, 2009, she now says that Rajagopalachari is not the master of the Shri Ram Chandra Mission, but only his manager. She now claims she has never seen his letter of appointment and the only master of the Mission is Babuji.
(see interview with Kasturi and/or transcript) She then denounces in very guarded and yet acerbic tone, everything that Rajagopalachari (celebrations of weddings, large ashrams, calls for donations, the publication of Whispers, etc..). She also says she knows about all the ashrams established at time of Babuji that were taken by force by supporters of Rajagopalachari, that a trial opposes him to the descendants of Babuji, all because there is a lot of money involved, hence the current evolution of the Mission which she regrets, and that she has left. Despite this, Kasturi is an authoritative figure in the movement of Sahaj Marg, Rajagopalachari has kept her on his list of preceptors. She also adds that Lalaji has nothing to do with Sahaj Marg, one of her disciples adding that Lalaji is Santmat.

Her disciples, Akshat Gupta Somesh and Pandit Ji have created a blog devoted to her in November 2006 (http://kasturibhenji.blogspot.com/), reserved for its own members since the spring 2009. You can find a presentation of her books on http://kasturibhenjibooks.blogspot.com/ and some of her speeches on http://kasturibhenjitalks.blogspot.com/. In France, after Cyril Roux are also Denise and Jean-François Minceta, from Tours and exiled to Canada in Victoria, British Columbia, in late 2008 who suggest that some groups are linked to her, and who translate some of her texts, etc.. Why do they come from the shadows now after 25 years of silence?

After Babuji and Kasturi, Dr. KC Varadachari (14/08/1902-30/01/1971) is probably one of the greatest historical figures of Sahaj Marg. The meeting between Babuji and Dr. Varadachari dates from 1955 and rapidly turned into a deep friendship. Holder of the famous Vivekananda Chair at the University of Madras (Chennai) , and professor of Philosophy at Tirupati (Andhra Pradesh) he created the Sahaj Marg Research Institute in 1965 and contributed to the spread of Sahaj Marg to the general public and its re-anchoring around the Hindu Raja Yoga. But in 1970, he warns Babuji about the risks of the drifting of the teachings of Sahaj Marg due to its rapid expansion.

Karumbur Chakravarthy Narayana is his third child, born June 11, 1939. He met Babuji at home for the first time in 1955 and was introduced to Sahaj Marg in December, 1956 at the age of 17. Babuji asked him
in 1979 to assist Rajagopalachari after his death in his duties as president of the Shri Ram Chandra Mission, which he performed up to 1991. He has even taken the lead in 1989 of the Sahaj Marg Research Institute founded by his father. But he eventually quit to found the ISRC (Institute of Sri Ramchandra Consciousness) in Hyderabad in August 1991. He complains of his developing an unhealthy "cult of a personality" through the concept of the living master and spiritual representative of Babuji, which he is not.

With the ISRC (http://www.sriramchandra.org/), KC Narayana Sahaj Marg teaches ideas heavily borrowed from his father Varadachari, the Pranahuti Aided Meditation. The ISRC has approximately 150 instructors, mostly in India and the USA, two of them reside in France. It has also created its own research and training center called Imperience (http://www.imperience.org/) and its own Sahaj Seva Foundation samsthdna (http://www.sahajsevasamsthan.org/), which manages a hospital, schools and the manufacturing of various products.

Present on the web for a long time, the ISRC and Narayana have also created a website dedicated exclusively to Doctor Varadachari (http://drkcv.org/), which can be easily understood because of his reputation. But on June 23, 2008, a self promotional website of Narayana is born (http://www.kcnarayana.org/), contradicting by the facts a teaching supposedly focused on Babuji and totally depersonalized. So he does not hesitate to list for us his qualities, by quoting Babuji's words of praise towards him, as supporting evidence, then he talks about his career and his family ... In short, all the ingredients to customize and to personalize the ISRC spirituality are now in place!

Recap. Today, with the disappearance of one (senior preceptor) and the other over time, there remains little more than the grand-sons of Babuji, Navneet and Puneet Kumar Saxena, head of a mission that has become virtual since the taking over of the ashram at Shahjahanpur, in lawsuits against the California Mission of Rajagopalachari. Besides the diaspora of senior preceptors, are also the aging full preceptors Kasturi in Lucknow, Narayan Rao in Gulbarga and Vital Rao in Bangalore, with many scattered communities in India and abroad, not forgetting the very structured ISRC of KC Narayana . For his part, Rajagopalachari seems more or less to be manipulating the last surviving son of Babuji at Shahjahanpur, Sarvesh, and the grandson of Lalaji,
Dinaysh Kumar Saxena, at Fatehgarh.

(See Epitome of Sahaj Marg by Dinaysh Kumar Saxena)

Rajagopalachari and His "Clan"

Parthasarathi Rajagopalachari was born July 24, 1927 near Madras (Chennai) in southern India. He met Babuji in 1964, became secretary of the Shri Ram Chandra Mission in 1970 and entices him in various travels around the world at 1972. Removed from office in 1982, he brings together a dissenting Working Committee in Hyderabad after the death of Babuji and has himself appointed president. He retires in 1985 at the age of 58 years old.

Rajagopalachari has the unanimously the senior preceptors against him. While the children of Babuji accuse him of trying to poison their father several times and call him a usurper, Kasturi calls him a manager and complains of what his idol worshipers have made of him, Narayana rejects the cult of personality that he has helped shape around himself.

When Babuji said about Kasturi that she was a saint, he immediately added that Rajagopalachari was a bachelor of science. " Indeed, the smoker of American cigarettes holds a bachelor of science degree and worked in chemical engineering before heading a subsidiary of the Indian industrial conglomerate TTK & Co of Krishnamachari. Very westernized, this man of the south has traveled the world multiple times in the course of his work, spending two years serving in Yugoslavia or in international technical committees.

Clever entrepreneur, Rajagopalachari knows how to lead men and manage his affairs. He develops valuable relationships with prominent Indian heavyweights and integrates them into his Committee representative of justice, police officers and entrepreneurs. He selects his lieutenants by their ambition and pushiness.

On April 29, 2005, Rajagopalachari chooses to write the letter of appointment of his successor, Ajay Kumar Bhatter, a young businessman from West Bengal and Member of the President's Executive Committee since 2003, chosen by Babuji and confirmed by the hierarchy of Sahaj Marg, signed and ratified by sixteen other personalities. Rajagopalachari announces it publicly the following day at Tiruppur (Tamil Nadu), on the occasion of the sixtieth anniversary of the Mission and the day of the 106th anniversary of the birth of Babuji, in a speech entitled "Securing the Future of the Mission" as he reaches his 78th year.

While the organization is required to manage all this little world, the danger is great to focus too much on the organization. Therefore, the Mission is guided in its work by a single person, both President and the spiritual representative of the Grand Master Babuji. This person must be chosen carefully to address both the physical work and the spiritual work, as well as his own spiritual growth. AK Bhatter has been chosen by Babuji, he was trained for it for years and will be even throughout the life of Rajagopalachari. He then will succeed him as Babuji's spiritual representative and President of the Mission throughout the world.

Reaching the zenith of his power, Rajagopalachari has named his successor in 2005. The following year he took over almost all the Indian ashrams which were not subservient to him, by cunning or by force, using his henchmen. He seems to manipulate at will the grandchildren of Lalaji and Babuji that are Dinaysh and Sarvesh. He has included on his list of preceptors, Kasturi despite her disagreement.

Uma Shankar Bajpai and Arokiasamy P Durai, retired policemen, are his henchmen, often at the forefront of the force taken in the ashram takeovers and all the dirty tricks. His only son PR Krishna, the wealthy heir and grand "bagman" of the Shri Ram Chandra Mission, manages the land and the buildings of the Mission as his own. Santosh Khanjee, the eminence grise, organizes and manages the mission.

Besides these, there are also the historical faithful, those who went to join him in India and the other international leaders of the mission ...

All these people are his close circle. Some of them are also contenders to succeed him. He has appointed AK Bhatter in 2005 to better calm things down, but he is only a puppet. His legitimacy will extinguish itself at the death of Rajagopalachari. Legitimacy is acquired, it can not be decreed. Besides Rajagopalachari himself worries about it, and reveals it in January 2009. He said a cancer was eating away at the Sahaj Marg from the inside, and that the organization is threatened with disintegration. He has nightmares where he sees the Shri Ram Chandra Mission disintegrating into 240 small missions.

In the succession race, his only son PR Krishna, with his grandson Bhargava and his granddaughter Madhuri are well placed. But his "eminence grise", (power behind the throne) Santosh Khanjee who knows all his secrets and keeps an iron grip throughout the organization and its foundations also has his opportunities. As for the outsiders, the best positioned is obviously the grandson of Babuji, Navneet Kumar Saxena. But the recent media exposure of the son of Dr. Varadachari, KC Narayana, suggesting he intends to pull his piece from the game.

And if Kasturi remains outside the power play, this is perhaps not the case with her staff. And what about Srinivasa Rao as head of the Shri Ram Chandraji Maharaj Seva Trust Cuddapah? As for the grandson of Lalaji, Dinaysh Kumar Saxena, what is he seeking by completely exposing himself the way he does?

Rajagopalachari has accumulated such a financial power and domination over men that the greed has became almost too large for his succession to go smoothly. The share market of Sahaj Marg™ and the SRCM ™ make it more of a dream. And in those circumstances, Ajay Kumar Bhatter can be swept away like a common straw ...