The e-mails originally sent by Erlendur Haraldsson to Robert Priddy contain
his true view on Sathya Sai Baba's personality and his homosexuality.
These mails were sent in 2001 and, due to my friendship with him, because
I considered his other work as a parapsychologist should not be sullied (and
I did not want to entangle him in a huge time-consuming debate on the Internet
that would inevitably have followed on publication of his views). He also had
my empathy for his very trying home situation due to tragically debilitating
chronic illness in his family in that period. Elsewhere I have explained quite
fully my motives in publishing the mails after 10 years of withholding them.
However, I will add that I took this step after conferring with experts in
psychology, sexual abuse counselling and other professionals I know.
All advised me that release of the information would be acceptable
- even a duty - despite the damage it might do to Haraldsson's reputation,
which was originally largely built on his investigations of Sathya Sai Baba
miracles ort 'paranormal' phenomena. Concerns about major allegations
of homosexual abuse of boys and young men are seen by all I asked as
overriding. These concerns were also taken most seriously by both UNESCO
(which cancelled their planned role in an educational conference with Sathya
Sai Baba at his ashram premises in India - not a thing done by UNESCO
without legal advice and sufficient evidence) and by the US State Department
(which wrote a warning referring specifically to Sathya Sai Baba as a sexual
abuser of young men - also something the FBI and CIA would have investigated
thoroughly before such an official government announcement).
Professor Haraldsson has never even remarked on these matters, which
seems a bad lapse on the part of someone wishing to be taken as a neutral
and unbiased investigator, even though the paranormal and not specifically
the abnormal (sexual and psychological) was his field of interest.
This issue is one that the whole world is taking more and more seriously,
and even the Pope does now (!), but not Haraldsson, whose 'time is too
precious'. It would not have taken long to make a statement in a half a
dozen paragraphs to state his position.

 E-mail exchanges between Erlendur Haraldsson and Robert Priddy
Full technical message source of the mail on the left

From Erlendur Haraldsson Mon Aug 27 08.51 2001
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Date: Aug, 27 2001 11:15:25 +0000
To: Robert Priddy <rpriddy@online.no>
From: Erlendur Haraldsson <erlendur@hi.is>
Subject: Re: divine downfalls
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This was a request I heeded, despite very strong misgivings as the sex abuse scenario around Sai Baba unfolded and horrific things came to light. I gave no written promise, however, not did I intend an eternal silence on it all. At the same time, I have always given - and never knowingly broken - assurances of strict confidentiality to those who have been abused in any way by Sathya Sai Baba and his people or who have reported important things for which they were unable to give their names in public. This assurance remains total.

Erlendur Haraldsson on Sathya Sai Baba's "sexual misfortunes"

Note how Haraldsson only "glanced through" the material ('stuff') I sent him, which included considerable documentation and testimony from known persons who had been abused sexually.

I removed some irrelevant personal details from the following mail.
Robert Priddy mailo to Erlendur Haraldsson - reply

Haraldsson was antagonistic towards the famous Indian skeptic Basava Premanand because he had been questioned him in e-mails he posted about certain failures in his investigation technique. H. eventually ceased to reply to his pertinent questions. However, Premanand's massive tome on the Murders in Sai Baba's Bedroom contains very extensive documentation of many aspects of the murders, the corrupt investigation process by police, CBI and nearly one hundred press reports. There can be no doubt whatever that Premanand was correct in most of his central contentions, if misled on less central issues now and again. That Sathya Sai Baba gave the order to shoot the four bound assailants can hardly be doubted any longer, especially since eye-witness accounts support this most strongly... one of which was a US devotee living in the apartment of Sai Baba's sister Venkamma at the time. This person, since disaffected, described the situation and especially how Sai Baba sent wads of money Rs. 60,000.- to Venkamma and to every relative of Sai Baba there and other insider residents the morning after the murders!

Erlendur Haraldsson on Homnosexuality and Spirituality wrt Sathya Sai Baba

No doubt Haraldsson should rather have pity for Conny Larsson who I know rather well, but he was not in the least willing to hear Larsson's history when I would tell him about it, which is written up in two best- selling books in Sweden. Larsson describes with searing honestly the processes he went through to free himself from the major traumas of horrific childhood sex abuse, the attraction of the doctrines of love and peace of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi (and when Conny learned how fraudulent and self-seeking Maharishi really was) his change over to Sathya Sai Baba. Yet Haraldsson expresses much friendship verging on admiration for Hislop, who was fully deluded by Sai Baba and had jumped from a whole string of guru cults and movements previously). In all of this Conny Larsson's progress closely parallels that of Dr. John Hislop - out of the Maharishi frying pan into the Sai Baba fire! Yet Conny freed himself of these illusions through a most painful process, which Hislop never did.

This illustrates that Haraldsson - being trained in experimental and more clinical-type psychology is a scholarly academic, but is certainly lacking in broad psychological understanding, insight and empathy as regards the victims of cults and gurus, as I have had plenty of opportunity to realize in many different discussions with him. He takes an amoral stance (hardly distinguishable from immorality in that he will take no steps to defend the many weak and vulnerable people around the world in respect of Sathya Sai Baba.

(I once made my choice against clinical psychology when I began studying it as it had so little to do with understanding most human beings or living
problems. In a research study in the sociology of social knowledge I carried out for the Norwegian Research Foundation, I interviewed many psychologists and sociologists of various schools and found a hiatus between those from the over-scientistic and the overly-humanistic trends.

The question remains, why couldn't Haraldsson speak out at least moderately about the various failings he saw in Sai Baba, why the great secrecy and protection of Sai Baba from all public moral criticism?

After our discussion I always had the sense that he was trying to cut short the issue because he felt it would damage the image and positive publicity he had achieved from many quarters as a serious investigator of Sathya Sai Baba. At the same time, he would be enthusiastic about Sai Baba's charm and effect on people, and saw the whole project in India as unreservedly positive, and this made him wish to protect the 'enigmatic' and somewhat divinely mysterious image of Sai Baba he had developed. In the early days I was myself hoping he would become yet more involved in the Sai Baba 'dispensation'. This was my great error, though it was of course almost entirely due to Sai Baba's many deceptions and the whole Potchemkin scenario he and his proponents had built up around him. After I became more and more disillusioned, Haraldsson still went enthusiastically to try to see the lingam emerge and follow events at Sai centres he visited, such as he did in Denmark, regularly in Washington D.C. and so on. He still seemed to me rather too fascinated by the charm, charisma and chutzpa he found in Sathya Sai Baba, while I had seen through most or all of it and had drained the cup right to the bottom of its bitter content.