RahukalaA hefty 700-page book titled A Compendium of the Teachings of Sathya Sai Baba (by Charlene Leslie-Chaden, contains quotations on 1,100 topics. Unfortunately the author has taken her material NOT ONLY from Sai Baba's Discourses (see Chapter 3 above) and other printed compilations of his words but also from over THIRTY other books where writers have quoted Baba's alleged pronouncements (often without references, as is a common omission in nearly all books about Sai Baba). In Leslie-Chaden's Compendium, all quotations, which are given equal 'value' as if they are Sai Baba's own 'teachings', are followed by initials denoting the written sources (inadequately explained in the Bibliography - the most inadequate and confusing I have ever seen: for example most authors' names are not even mentioned!

It is of interest that Leslie-Chaden includes a reference to one of Sathya Sai Baba's pseudo-astrological superstitions, the belief in times of bad and good influences, which ashramites well know that he strictly observed. 'Gulikakala' refers to auspicious periods of time when it is good to start projects, begin journeys, inaugurating sites, arranging marriages, making life changes etc. 'Rahukala' is the opposite. For example, he never travelled by car during Rahukala.

Sai Baba affirmed the validity of astrology as arising from the Manu Dharma Sastra of ancient times (see Sathya Sai Speaks Vol. 24, p. 294). However, he also warned that astrologers are mostly wrong and their data unreliable (see Sathya Sai Speaks Vol. 2, p. 14), not least because they are "mostly full of ego and conceit" (Sathya Sai Speaks Vol. 30, p. 74)

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Following the fallacious astrological claims made by Hindu practitioners, the good or bad times were explained to devotees by Sai Baba as occurring when dark spots move across the sun, having a negative effect on our minds - lasting 1 1/2 minutes each day. The complexity of calculation
of the exact minutes has been allowed for by a safety margin of 1 1/2 hours each day. However, sunspots do not occur in any such regular way, as anyone with the least knowledge of the solar system well knows. So these must be spots of the immaterial 'cloud-cuckoo' kind, one supposes? The supposed times are as shown here (left).

Brian Steel has cogently remarked: "Given the current lack of evidence of serious research on Sai Baba, it is unlikely that most devotees notice that anything is amiss in all this as they pick out interesting extracts to discuss at Study Circle Meetings. Even if they do see how this compendium is composed, they are unlikely to have the necessary time or stamina to sort out the wheat from the chaff, that is, to distinguish the "direct quotations".

See Devotees contributions to a myth

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