UPDATE: I should have noted in the original post that I strongly support Covid vaccine mandates, so have no problem with a religious group having vaccinated and non-vaccinated people sit in different locations. That protects the vaccinated, who are still at a small risk of getting Covid, from those who aren't vaccinated.
It always makes me feel good to hear from someone who has come to see the downside of belonging to a religious organization.
Today I got this message regarding the organization I belonged to for 35 years, Radha Soami Satsang Beas (RSSB), which is headquartered in India. Gurinder Singh Dhillon is the RSSB guru.
Hi Brian, I hope that you’re well.
I ran across your site a few years ago and was at the time, perplexed by why someone would move away from RSSB in that fashion. I remember your book ‘Life is Fair’ well and have a copy of it - great book.
Anyway, I’ve been visiting your site more recently for some inspiration and support really. I am now at the final tipping point to breaking away from RSSB for good.
The organisation has become massive, with definite hierarchies despite the suggestion that all seva [volunteer service] is equal, and GSD’s [Gurinder Singh Dhillon's] financial dealings/misdemeanours are of great concern.
There is no contact with the Master who is so far removed from the average initiate. He is entirely unapproachable. Hell, if you write him a letter you simply get a cut and paste response from a sevadar [volunteer]. He obviously has no idea of the real struggles initiates are facing and he is presumably not interested in them.
He is treated like a celebrity and possibly gets a real kick out of this. Is he a true living Master? Does he really give a shit? I have doubts in that regard.
Of particular concern currently is the treatment of vaccinated vs unvaccinated initiates. Those who are vaccinated get to sit at the front near the Master while others get relegated to the back of the hall. World-wide one cannot do seva unless vaccinated. Apartheid much?
People who have dedicated countless years and much effort to seva have been entirely sidelined with instructions from those in ‘power’ who throw their weight around all with of course, the promise that it is all being done with love. Not good.
Further, NRIs ]Non Resident Indians] can only be initiated at the Dera with a vaccine passport. He is now trying to force every initiate into becoming vaccinated. While I am neither for nor against the vaccine, I am pro choice (but I have chosen not to take it).
In a spiritual organisation there should be no divisions, but he is fueling them. Considering his dealings with big pharma - is there a link here to the vaccines? Just a thought. The churches and mosques (certainly locally) are not taking this route. There, everyone is welcome. And that should be the case with RSSB - if it were truly non discriminatory.
There are a great number of disillusioned initiates out there. With the most recent developments they’re dropping off the path at an alarming rate.
We live in interesting times.