So if a religious leader you're devoted to is acting illegally, or at least unethically, should you pretend that behavior doesn't exist? No, of course not.
Seeking truth is much more important than religious loyalty. Bad things happen when True Believers turn a blind eye to wrongdoing by supposedly "spiritual" leaders.
Child abuse by Catholic priests is a notable example. So is Jonestown, where devotees died by drinking poisoned kool-aid, their devotion to a crazed leader was so extreme. And there's plenty of examples of gurus acting badly in India, yet sometimes their followers riot after they've been convicted of serious crimes.
On this blog I've been reporting regularly on massive financial fraud involving the guru of Radha Soami Satsang Beas, Gurinder Singh Dhillon -- who has been accused in a criminal complaint of conspiring to commit fraud and making death threats.
Yet devotees of the guru are amazingly adept at ignoring those facts. They consider that he can do wrong, so obviously he must be innocent of wrongdoing.
That sort of circular argument is laughable. However, the dangers of religious fanaticism aren't funny. History teaches us that.
Below are two recent comments by Spence Tepper on posts I've written. Tepper is a good example of a spiritual seeker who is also committed to recognizing wrongdoing by the RSSB guru.
His first paragraph below is ironic, by the way. Tepper is illustrating the head-in-the-sand mentality of many Radha Soami Satsang Beas initiates, who are known as "satsangis." "Baba Ji" refers to Gurinder Singh Dhillon.
Here's the first comment.
Hi Dungeness, every Satsangi sincerely interested in rising above attachment, and living for spirituality, must now tell themselves they don't really know what happened, that Baba Ji is a mystery.
Whatever you think of Baba Ji, stuff is going on with fraud on an international scale. And he and his family were recipients of most of those fraudulent loans.
The fact that you believe you don't have enough information to conclude he was involved in stuff no Satsangi should go near is very sad.
Truth invites inspection.
Baba Ji has a duty to model for us how to live. And that never includes privileges afforded to the rich, powerful and 'perfect'.
Yet today, in order to defend Baba Ji, Satsangis must every day make excuses to themselves, with justifications for why he would be the central recipient of fraudulent monies year after year, and why he 'doesn't need to repay, since he's god and it all belongs to him anyway.'
Too close to the excuses Christians in Germany gave to Hitler, and to themselves for turning a blind eye.
The Lord comes as one of us, to our level. They act as though they are responsible for their children, and not the other way around.
What you and others are doing is demonstrating why religion rarely leads the way and often becomes an obstacle that allows harm to innocent people, even exploitation of them.
I'm afraid Dungeness you have no idea of the harm that is actually being done even now.
But when do the disciples of a fake Guru figure it out?
Almost always they are the last, after so much damage has been done.
Baba Ji, pay your bills.
And here's the second comment.
Ahimsa, there are few if any conspiracy theories here.
The Securities and Exchange Board of India ruled that fraud and falsification had been committed by the Singh brothers, both Malvinder and Shivinder, in their efforts to provide loans largely to the Dhillon family and other RSSB associates.
The new Religare board also conducted their own audits and went further in their EOW to the Delhi police and the court, stating that their information proved the recipients of the loans knew and participated in fraud.
The unpaid loans at Fortis threw that healthcare company into financial distress leading to efforts to gain a buyer.
Further, it is a matter of legal court documented testimony that RSSB transferred a new 200 bed charitable hospital mid-construction to Fortis.
If the Dhillon family would simply pay their debts, that would be a step towards living up to the vows.
It is not unusual for Gurus and others, charismatic and loved by many, to have human failings and flawed character.
But it is also the case that this is psychologically near impossible for their loving followers to consider.
And that is understandable.
However, from a psychological and spiritual perspective, the excuses we make for the Guru do not help them in the least. They are actually excuses for our own weaknesses and nothing more.
We only enable our own addictions and shortcomings making claims of spiritual perfection for others when we are unqualified to make such assertions, nor would a true teacher of the highest truth ever allow such claims.
And the reason is simple. The Truth is greater than any individual personality, and should be regarded above any individual.
A person merged in that truth is not magnified, but perfectly humbled, law abiding in every sense, and near invisible socially.