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Difference between revisions of "TI:Prem Rawat"

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===Recognition - media appearances===
 
===Recognition - media appearances===
[[Image:Maharaji United Nations Anniversary.jpg|240px|thumb|Prem Rawat addresses an  audience of diplomats, and government and civic leaders at a runner-up event to the celebration of the UN's 60th anniversary at the Herbst Theater in [[San Francisco]], where the [[UN Charter]] was signed in 1945. (June 2005)]]
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Rawat has received proclamations and resolutions that honor his work from the governors of [[Michigan]], [[New Mexico]], [[New Hampshire]], [[New York]], [[San Francisco]], and [[Los Angeles]],<ref>[http://tprf.org/media_press_room.htm TPRF website press room]</ref> and the keys to the cities of [[New York City]]; [[New Orleans, Louisiana]]; [[Oakland, California]]; [[Kyoto, Japan]]; [[Detroit, Michigan]]; [[Miami, Florida]] and [[Miami Beach, Florida]]. In 2006 he received the title of "Ambassador or Peace" from the International University of Peace [[Unipaz]].<ref> [http://tprf.org/Prem_Rawat_press_releases/Prem_Rawat_Honored_by_University_of_Peace.htm Prem Rawat Honored by International University of Peace]</ref>
 
Rawat has received proclamations and resolutions that honor his work from the governors of [[Michigan]], [[New Mexico]], [[New Hampshire]], [[New York]], [[San Francisco]], and [[Los Angeles]],<ref>[http://tprf.org/media_press_room.htm TPRF website press room]</ref> and the keys to the cities of [[New York City]]; [[New Orleans, Louisiana]]; [[Oakland, California]]; [[Kyoto, Japan]]; [[Detroit, Michigan]]; [[Miami, Florida]] and [[Miami Beach, Florida]]. In 2006 he received the title of "Ambassador or Peace" from the International University of Peace [[Unipaz]].<ref> [http://tprf.org/Prem_Rawat_press_releases/Prem_Rawat_Honored_by_University_of_Peace.htm Prem Rawat Honored by International University of Peace]</ref>
  
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After Prem Rawat's first arrival in the [[United Kingdom]] and [[United States]] in [[1971]] at the age of thirteen and through the [[1970s]] he, his students and his organizations attracted media scrutiny and attention. Examples of articles appearing in the mainstream press in that decade include a [[1974]] article in [[Rolling Stone magazine]] and a [[1979]] article in the [[New York Review of Books]].<ref>Rolling Stone Magazine. ''The Seventies: A Tumultous Decade Reconsidered.'' Rolling Stones Press, 1998. p. 102, ISBN 0-316-75914-7</ref><ref>du Plessix Gray, Francine. ''Blissing out in Houston.'' The New York Review of Books. vol.20, no. 20 (December 13, 1973) [http://www.nybooks.com/articles/article-preview?article_id=9652]</ref>   
 
After Prem Rawat's first arrival in the [[United Kingdom]] and [[United States]] in [[1971]] at the age of thirteen and through the [[1970s]] he, his students and his organizations attracted media scrutiny and attention. Examples of articles appearing in the mainstream press in that decade include a [[1974]] article in [[Rolling Stone magazine]] and a [[1979]] article in the [[New York Review of Books]].<ref>Rolling Stone Magazine. ''The Seventies: A Tumultous Decade Reconsidered.'' Rolling Stones Press, 1998. p. 102, ISBN 0-316-75914-7</ref><ref>du Plessix Gray, Francine. ''Blissing out in Houston.'' The New York Review of Books. vol.20, no. 20 (December 13, 1973) [http://www.nybooks.com/articles/article-preview?article_id=9652]</ref>   
  
A [[1980]] article in ''[[The Washington Post]]'' reported that a Congressional Panel had singled out, among other controversial groups: ''"Guru Maharaj Ji's Divine Light Mission...as cults that employ manipulative techniques and turn children against their parents."''<ref>[http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/national/longterm/cult/misc/mdpanel.htmPanel Urged to Probe Cults], ''[[The Washington Post]]'', [[March 14]], [[1980]].</ref>  An article which mentioned the Divine Light Mission appeared  in ''[[Time Magazine]]'' in [[1997]]<ref>[http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,986138-3,00.html The Lure of the Cult], ''[[Time Magazine]]'', [[April 7]], [[1997]]<br>The modern era of cultism dates to the 1970s, when the free inquiry of the previous decade led quite a few exhausted seekers into intellectual surrender. Out from the rubble of the countercultures came such groups as the Children of God and the Divine Light Mission, est and the Church of Scientology, the robotic political followers of Lyndon LaRouche and the Unification Church of the Rev. Sun Myung Moon. On Nov. 18, 1978, the cultism of the '70s arrived at its dark crescendo in Jonestown, Guyana, where more than 900 members of Jim Jones' Peoples Temple died at his order, most by suicide</ref>. A [[1998]] article in ''[[Rocky Mountain News]]'' referred to Elan Vital as a "cult"<ref>"Former Guru on a Different Mission", ''[[Rocky Mountain News]]'', [[January 30]], [[1998]].<br>Nowadays, former cult members estimate Maharaji (he's dropped the Guru from his name and simplified the spelling) has 100000 to 200000 followers...</ref>. 
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A [[1980]] article in ''[[The Washington Post]]'' reported that a Congressional Panel had singled out, among other controversial groups: ''"Guru Maharaj Ji's Divine Light Mission...as cults that employ manipulative techniques and turn children against their parents."''<ref>[http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/national/longterm/cult/misc/mdpanel.htmPanel Urged to Probe Cults], ''[[The Washington Post]]'', [[March 14]], [[1980]].</ref>  An article which mentioned the Divine Light Mission appeared  in ''[[Time Magazine]]'' in [[1997]]<ref>[http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,986138-3,00.html The Lure of the Cult], ''[[Time Magazine]]'', [[April 7]], [[1997]]<br>The modern era of cultism dates to the 1970s, when the free inquiry of the previous decade led quite a few exhausted seekers into intellectual surrender. Out from the rubble of the countercultures came such groups as the Children of God and the Divine Light Mission, est and the Church of Scientology, the robotic political followers of Lyndon LaRouche and the Unification Church of the Rev. Sun Myung Moon. On Nov. 18, 1978, the cultism of the '70s arrived at its dark crescendo in Jonestown, Guyana, where more than 900 members of Jim Jones' Peoples Temple died at his order, most by suicide</ref>.  
 
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In [[2002]], an article by the ''[[Australian Associated Press]]'' referred to the organization as the "Elan Vital cult."<ref>"Guru's followers flock to hear him speak", [[Australian Associated Press]], [[September 3]], [[2002]], [[Brisbane, Australia]]</ref>
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====Criticism by former members ====
 
====Criticism by former members ====
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===Excerpts===
 
===Excerpts===
{{listen | filename=Prem Rawat United Nations Anniversary.ogg | title=Prem Rawat at the United Nations’ 60th Anniversary. | description=Excerpt of '''Maharaji's''' address. | format=[[Ogg]]}}
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{{quotation|Peace needs to be in everyone's life. Of all the things we have tried in this world, there is one thing we have never given a chance. That one thing is peace. If we want to hope for something, maybe we could hope in our heart that peace will come in our life. The peace that we are looking for is within. It is in the heart, waiting to be felt, and I can help you get in touch with it. It is not the world that needs peace; it is people. When people in the world are at peace within, the world will be at peace.  <br/>'''Maharaji'''.<ref>[http://www.tprf.org/Prem_Rawat_letter.htm A letter from Prem Rawat] (Retrieved January 2006)</ref>}}
 
{{quotation|Peace needs to be in everyone's life. Of all the things we have tried in this world, there is one thing we have never given a chance. That one thing is peace. If we want to hope for something, maybe we could hope in our heart that peace will come in our life. The peace that we are looking for is within. It is in the heart, waiting to be felt, and I can help you get in touch with it. It is not the world that needs peace; it is people. When people in the world are at peace within, the world will be at peace.  <br/>'''Maharaji'''.<ref>[http://www.tprf.org/Prem_Rawat_letter.htm A letter from Prem Rawat] (Retrieved January 2006)</ref>}}
  

Revision as of 02:28, 19 February 2007

Prem Pal Singh Rawat also called Maharaji, (formerly called Guru Maharaj Ji) is a speaker and teacher on the subject of "inner peace", and says that he is able to offer a practical way to experience it.[1][2] He calls his method "Knowledge" which primarily consists of four meditation techniques.[3] Rawat describes it as a way to take "all your senses that have been going outside all your life, turn them around and put them inside to feel and to actually experience you".[4]

Born in Haridwar, North India on December 10, 1957, Rawat was initiated in the techniques of "Knowledge" by his father when he was six years old and succeeded him when he died in 1966, being accepted by his father's followers as their satguru (Sanskrit: true teacher) or "Perfect Master" at his father's funeral.[5][6] He thereby became the recognized leader of the Divine Light Mission (DLM) that was started by his father and began taking his message to people throughout the Indian subcontinent.[7]

In 1971 he was invited to speak in London and Los Angeles and attracted substantial media attention that focused on his age and the claims of his followers. In 1972 he began touring the world talking about inner peace and teaching Knowledge.[8] His marriage to a Westerner in 1974 precipitated a family rift and Rawat's mother and his eldest brother Sat Pal, returned to India.[9][10] Rawat remained in the West and in the 1980s he changed the style of his message and relinquished the Hindu tradition, beliefs, and most of its original eastern religious practices.[11]Rawat continued to tour extensively in the 1980s and 1990s, most often at the controls of a series of executive jets leased for his use.[12]

According to The Prem Rawat Foundation which he established in 2001, Rawat promotes a means to achieve a lifelong, individual experience of inner peace,[13] and that he believes that "it is only by individuals finding peace for themselves can the world be at peace". Starting in 2001, he has been invited to address various institutions on the subject of peace,[14] and has, through the Prem Rawat Foundation, spearheaded various humanitarian initiatives.

Childhood in India

Rawat was born in India where he attended the Catholic-run St. Joseph's Academy elementary school in Dehra Dun. He was the fourth and youngest son of Shri Hans Ji Maharaj and his second wife, Jagat Janani Mata Shri Rajeshwari Devi.[15][16] At the age of three he began speaking about fulfillment, love, and peace at his father's meetings.[17] In these early days, Rawat was known both as Sant Ji[18] and as Balyogeshwar.[19] When he was six years old, his father taught him the techniques of Knowledge, including young Prem among his other students. In 1966, at age eight, Rawat succeeded to the role of Satguru and leadership of the DLM upon the death of his father, which was unusual since it was not in accordance with Hindu tradition of primogeniture.[20][7] His family told American reporters during the early 1970s that Shri Hans was away from home at the time of his death, and that shortly beforehand he had written a letter home to his family essentially naming Rawat as his successor. There is a witness account by Shri Hans' personal driver which refers to Shri Hans' request for Prem to succeed him.[21] Speaking much like his father, he took the stage and assured those that mourned his father death, that the master would always be with them and that he would continue his father's work.[22] His succession was generally accepted when the crowd responded to him as their teacher.[23][24] Afterwards, his mother and brothers came on stage to pay their respects to him.[25]

Rawat remained in India for five more years, continuing to offer the Knowledge his father had championed. In the late 1960s, a small number of young Western seekers, many of them hippies, had come across Rawat at his home in Dehra Dun. Several of them asked him to visit the West, where, they said, many young people would be interested in what he had to offer. In October 1969 he sent a mahatma to London to begin teaching Knowledge on his behalf. In 1970 many of his new Western followers traveled to India to see and hear him and were present when he announced at a gathering at India Gate in Delhi that he was ready to begin the task of bringing peace to the world. This gathering of 1,000,000 people on 8 November, was reported to be one of the largest ever in the history of New Delhi and was the culmination of an 18-mile-long procession.[26]

According to the Dutch religious scholar and minister Reender Kranenborg, this speech called the Peace Bomb marked the start of the Maharaji's mission to the West.[27]

The 1970s

Rawat first came to the West during his school holidays on 17 June 1971, visiting the United Kingdom, the United States and Canada. He traveled without his family and reported that he arrived with only twenty-five pounds sterling in his pocket.[28] He was interviewed by the BBC and spoke at the first Glastonbury Festival, where he again offered people peace. Rawat made brief trips to Paris and Heidelberg, Germany, and on 17 July flew to Los Angeles and began a tour of American cities.[29]

Rawat returned to India in October to commemorate his father's birthday having first established the US Divine Light Mission, or DLM, in September 1971 in Denver, Colorado. In 1972, Rawat returned to the West, this time accompanied by his mother and eldest brother, Satpal, and an entourage of mahatmas and other supporters. That year DLM held a multi-day event at Montrose, Colorado at which two thousand people attended.

In November 1973, DLM booked the Houston Astrodome for a three-day gathering coinciding with Shri Hans' birthday called "Millennium '73".[30] The attendance was estimated at twenty thousand and according to Thomson Gale, "the rapidly developing movement ran into trouble, beginning with its inability to fill the Houston Astrodome in a highly publicized event."[31][32] Rennie Davis, a former member of the Chicago Seven, was a prominent spokesman for the group at that event.[33] By the early 1970s, DLM was operating in South America, North America, Europe, and Australia and had established ashrams, whose members were required to take a vow of poverty, chastity, and obedience.[34][35][36]

In 1974, DLM was reporting that 60,000 individuals were practicing the techniques of Knowledge in the United Kingdom and "it was a successful movement because it stressed access to the inner world, the attainment of peace and certainty ( 'leave no room for doubt in your mind'), direct experience of God within and the use of guaranteed methods".[37]

In May 1974 at age sixteen, Rawat married Marolyn Johnson, a twenty-five year old flight attendant and one of his early American students,[38] naming her at the wedding, in keeping with Indian tradition, after the Hindu Goddess Durga.[39] The marriage to a Westerner apparently precipitated a rift between Prem and his mother,[40] for what she described as his pursuit of a "despicable, nonspiritual way of life."[41] Rawat took control of the Western DLM away from them, and his mother disowned him and returned to India with two of his brothers. His mother gained control of DLM India through legal means and appointed the eldest brother, Satpal, as leader of the DLM in India. The other two brothers split in allegiance, one siding with Prem and one siding with Satpal. Most of the mahatmas in the West either returned to India with his mother or were fired. Rawat later commented to the press on the family rift, saying "They live in India and I think [my mother] was upset that I married a foreigner. She thought I had married out of my caste or something like that."[42]

According to an article in the 1979 Sociological Review, Maharaj Ji was financially independent through the generosity of his devotees and this allowed him to follow the lifestyle of an American millionaire, support his family and finance close officials and mahatmas on their frequent trips around the globe.[43]

During these years, claims of divinity made by the Indian mahatmas, his family, and some followers were reported by the media,[44][45]. Kranenborg wrote in a 1982 article that "in Maharaj ji's satsangs one can notice a speaking style that resembles very much some Christian evangelization campaigns: a pressing request, an emphasis on the last possibility to choose before it is too late and a terminology in which one is requested to surrender to the Lord, in this case Maharaj ji himself."[46]The American religious scholar J. Gordon Melton wrote in 1986 that, "[..]Maharaj Ji, as do many of the other Sant Mat leaders, claims to be a Perfect Master, an embodiment of God on earth, a fitting object of worship and veneration." [47]Rawat denied claims to be divine in several interviews given to the press and on television.[48][49] In 1971 he had said that yes, he is human (with) hands, bone (and) lungs but that "guru is greater than God because if you go to guru, guru will show you God".[50]

In an autobiographical book by an early follower who was quite involved with the DLM in the early 70s, Sophia Collier writes, "There are those who sincerely believe that Guru Maharaj Ji is the Lord of Creation here in the flesh to save the world. And then there are those who know him a little better than that. They relate to him in a more human way... to them he is more of a teacher, a guide, a co-conspirator in their personal pursuit of a more heavenly way of life.".[51]

According to Stephen J Hunt, a professor of sociology, the major focus of Rawat is on stillness, peace, and contentment within the individual, and his 'Knowledge' consists of the techniques to obtain them. Knowledge, roughly translated, means the happiness of the true self-understanding. Each individual should seek to comprehend his or her true self. In turn, this brings a sense of well-being, joy, and harmony as one comes in contact with one's "own nature." [52] The first posters about Rawat in the early 1970s said, “Meditation is not what you think.” At that time, Rawat was already making a distinction between the "mind", which he described as including the dark or negative thoughts that a person may have, and "heart", the place within each person where peace can be found. Lans and Derks wrote that according to Maharaj Ji, "all evil should be attributed to the mind", and that such concept of mind indicates the obstacle of freeing oneself from former bonds, referring primarily to a "state of consciousness characterized by everything but passive, nonrational confidence and trust."[53] In the 1970s Rawat spoke in more than twenty countries and received the keys to the cities of New York City, New Orleans, Monterey, Oakland, Detroit, Miami, and Macon, Georgia in the United States, and Kyoto, Japan.[54]

The 1980s and 1990s

Rawat returned to India in October 1980 for the first time since 1975, and spoke to over 38,000 students in Delhi on newly acquired land.

He returned to South America for events for the first time since 1976, and visited Mexico for the first time. He continued to hold large, multi-day events for his students in Cartagena (Colombia), Miami, Rome, London, New Delhi, and Kansas City (Missouri). Other cities where he spoke included Cancun (Mexico), Lima, Sao Paulo, and Leicester (UK). He obtained a private pilot’s license and began training to obtain certifications and ratings for operating various types of aircraft.

For a time around 1980, the center of operations moved to Miami, where activities included a project known as DECA. DECA was concerned with the customization of a Boeing 707 intended for Rawat's work, and the development of a commercial executive aircraft refurbishing facility. During 1981, Rawat flew the 707 to forty different cities and spoke on 120 separate occasions. He crisscrossed North America four times that year, touring South America, Europe, India, Nepal, Australia, New Zealand, and Malaysia. The DECA business was later sold to Aircraft Modular Products (AMP), a leader in the field of business jet interiors which which in turn was sold in 1998 to B/E aerospace for $118 US million.[55]

The Encyclopedia of American Religions describes that in the early 1980s Rawat personally renounced the trappings of Indian culture and religion, and disbanded the DLM, to make his teachings independent of culture, religious beliefs, and lifestyles.[56] Other scholars, such as Kranenborg, George D. Chryssides and Ron Geaves also described a departure from divine connotations.[57][58] Rawat continued delivering the four techniques of Knowledge which, according to Chryssides, afford self-understanding and self-realization, in a manner that is independent of culture and not bound to the traditions of India.[59]

In 1983 the Western ashrams were closed and the Divine Light Mission changed its name to Elan Vital.[60][61] The video production organization was renamed "Visions International,"[62] and it began producing video versions of Rawat's addresses. According to America's Alternative Religions, during the 1980s, Rawat stepped away from the image of himself as a "Perfect Master" and dropped the title "Guru Maharaj Ji" in favor of "Maharaji". He continued to appear to audiences as Maharaji, a teacher, and established a minimal organization called Elan Vital. In this new role, "he may be reaching more listeners than ever, especially abroad, but his role is that of a public speaker, and the original religious movement is essentially defunct."[63] An article published on December 4 1987 in The Times of India, describes Rawat's mission as involving international tours during which he explains to "people in general without any distinction of caste, color, race, stature, or wealth that the source of happiness, peace and contentment lies within one's own self. [...] He is trying to prepare humanity to face and overcome the present day tussle and turmoil prevailing in the world in the name of achieving world peace, on individual basis. In fact what Maharaj Ji is trying to do is not being comprehended by most of the people, with the results that he is included in the category of those persons who have become mere machines to collect wealth, while Maharaj Ji has taken a pledge to complete this huge task without any monetary consideration."[64]

Rawat continued to tour extensively in the 1980s and 1990s, most often at the controls of a series of executive jets leased for his use. He held multi-day events in over 40 countries and in 1990 he spoke at over 50 public events all over the world. In December 1998, Rawat spoke via a live, interactive global satellite broadcast from an event in Pasadena, California, to 86,600 participants in 173 locations in 50 countries. In 1999 his message started being broadcast on a regular basis via satellite to North American cities with similar initiatives in other regions and countries.

21st century

Although based in the U.S., Rawat is active all over the world. Between 1965, when his addresses were first documented, and July 2005, he addressed audiences at 2,280 events around the world. Between January 2004 and June 2005 alone, he delivered 117 addresses in Asia, Europe, and North America.[65][66]With a more culturally neutral approach, Rawat now concentrates on what he calls a "universal message of peace" and "self-fulfillment",[67] introducing people to the possibility of inner peace. According to the Prem Rawat Foundation, his message is currently distributed in eighty-eight countries, largely on video and in print. His message is broadcast in various TV channels such as Canal Infinito in South America, Channel 31 in Australia, Kabel BW in Germany, Dish Network in the U.S.A, and others. The video broadcasts have won awards from various non-related entities.[68]

Rawat reportedly travels about eleven months out of the year on world-wide speaking and training tours. In addition to speaking at large gatherings of students and interested persons, he speaks at various cultural, educational, and community forums. He reportedly spoke to more than a million and a half people in a 2005 India tour.[69]

In 2001 a new organization, the Prem Rawat Foundation, was founded as a non-profit organization largely for the production and distribution of audiovisual and other materials containing Rawat's message.[70] The Foundation also oversees several humanitarian efforts around the world, providing food and medical relief to war-torn areas and medical care in impoverished areas.[71] On 24 March 2006, Rawat inaugurated a facility in the tribal area of Jharkhand, India, called "Food for People". It was developed and operated, in consultation with local village elders, to provide 45,000 free meals to children and adults in need each month. The facility is run by fifty local villagers trained by volunteers of the Raj Vidya Kender. The facility was developed with the financial support of The Prem Rawat Foundation.[72]

Elan Vital organizations remain active in the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia and Switzerland, and are engaged in event organization, logistics, and fundraising. These entities are much smaller now than the DLM has been in times past, with only a small paid staff and volunteers doing most of the work and preparation for events. While these organizations report that they seek and accept Rawat's input, he is not an officer, director, or employee of Elan Vital or the Prem Rawat Foundation. They report he receives no income from them for his services or from the sale of materials other than reimbursement for documented tour and speaking expenses.[73] There are other independent, volunteer-based organizations that promote Rawat's teachings locally in countries of all five continents.[74]

Techniques of Knowledge

The techniques of Knowledge, comprises four techniques that Rawat claims will help his students direct their senses within to experience inner peace. Students often describe the experience as "going within." The Prem Rawat Foundation describes the practice of Knowledge as having no bearing or compatibility problems with peoples' existing religious or spiritual belief system.[75]

According to George D. Chryssides, this "Knowledge" is based on self-understanding, providing the practitioner with calmness, peace, and contentment, as the inner-self is identical with the divine, and that Maharaji emphasizes that Knowledge is universal, not Indian, in nature.[76]

These techniques are the same as taught by his father, Hans Ji Maharaj, who in turn learned them from Swarupanand, his teacher. Jeffrey K. Hadden cites Maharaji in saying that "Knowledge is a way to be able to take all your senses that have been going outside all your life, turn them around and put them inside to feel and to actually experience you... What you are looking for is inside of you."[77]

Kranenborg writes that the techniques of Knowledge, also known as kriyas, originated from the Surat Shabda Yoga or Sant Mat, the Path of the Sound Current.[78] This alleged relationship to Surat Shabd Yoga or Sant Mat is neither denied nor acknowledged in any literature from the organizations that support Rawat's work, or by Rawat himself.

Ron Geaves, Chair in religious studies at the University of Chester and a student of Rawat, asserts that several scholars have placed Rawat's teachings in the Sant Mat revival, best represented by the Radhasoami movement, or related to Surat Shabd yoga movements, but states that Rawat's history is actually linked to the lineage of Advait Mat, a north Indian cluster of movements which perceive themselves as originating from Totapuri, the teacher of Ramakrishna, and that Rawat has referred to this lineage as his own on his website.[79]

During the period when the organization was at its largest, a student's access to the techniques was constrained through a layer of intermediaries. A mahatma or, in later times, an instructor would, in a "Knowledge selection" process, decide and choose which aspirants would receive the techniques. Once an aspirant was chosen, he or she would then be granted access to a "Knowledge session" in which the techniques were revealed. The approach to receiving Rawat's techniques of Knowledge has become much less onerous since the year 2000. The use of personal mentors and instructors in smaller groups has largely been abandoned in favor of taped or live instruction by Rawat himself via satellite video or cable television programming[80] along with on-line newsletters for information dissemination. Access to the techniques is now governed by a much less restrictive self-paced and self-assessed preparation process, perhaps reminiscent of a more open attitude prevalent during Rawat's initial foray into the West.

As of 2005, there is a self-paced process of preparation, called "The Keys," before a person is taught the techniques of Knowledge. Going through the Keys process involves watching video materials in which Maharaji presents the understanding necessary to learn the techniques of Knowledge.[81] However, students must be at least eighteen years old and of legal age in their country in order to prepare for and be taught the techniques of Knowledge. The sixth Key is the “Knowledge Session”, in which persons ready to learn the techniques are taught by Rawat via a multimedia presentation available in fifty languages. These techniques are taught at no cost.[82]

Reception

Practitioners of Knowledge

According to the Prem Rawat Foundation, Rawat has, over the years, engaged over nine million people in 250 cities and fifty countries. They estimate slightly more than half a million have been taught the techniques since he came to the West, about 125,000 of this number between January 2000 and April 2004.[83] In 1997, "Religions of the World: A Latter-day Saint View" estimated a general membership of appox. 1.2 mil. worldwide, with 50,000 in the U.S.[84] Volunteers estimate an additional 125,000 are currently in preparation to be taught the techniques, 65,000 having been in preparation five months or more, with these numbers on the increase in many countries. A press release states that 2004 was the first year where the number of new students has exceeded 50,000.[85] Printed and audiovisual materials are available in approximately sixty languages, and the organizations estimate Rawat currently has hundreds of thousands of practicing students worldwide, representing a wide variety of backgrounds and personal situations. However, since there is no longer any membership component to the organizations, it is difficult to determine with precision the number of persons actually practicing his techniques. Chryssides' Historical Dictionary of New Religious movements (2001), estimates 15,000 people practicing the techniques in the United States and 5,000 in the United Kingdom.

'Premie' is the name given to students of Rawat in India and other Eastern countries. It stems from the Hindi word "prem" (prema in Sanskrit), which means "love"; "premie" means "lover." Until the early 1990s it also was the name given to his students in the West, and it is still occasionally used. Nowadays students of Rawat sometimes refer to fellow students as "People that received the techniques of Knowledge," "People with Knowledge," or more generically as "Maharaji's students."

Recognition - media appearances

Rawat has received proclamations and resolutions that honor his work from the governors of Michigan, New Mexico, New Hampshire, New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles,[86] and the keys to the cities of New York City; New Orleans, Louisiana; Oakland, California; Kyoto, Japan; Detroit, Michigan; Miami, Florida and Miami Beach, Florida. In 2006 he received the title of "Ambassador or Peace" from the International University of Peace Unipaz.[87]

In May 2006, Rawat made a guest appearance for a half-hour interview with Rajiv Mehrotra on his weekly talk show on Doordarshan TV,[88] one of the national TV stations accessible all across India.

In July 2006, Bhairon Singh Shekhawat, the vice-president of India, referred to Prem Rawat as a "messenger of peace" in opening a meeting attended by 25,000 young people held at the Gandhi Indoor Stadium. [89]

For accolades by business, academy and government leaders see Wikiquote.

Scholarly opinions and criticism

Many scholars and authors that have written about Prem Rawat and related organisations. They include: David V. Barrett, George D. Chryssides, Lucy DuPertuis, Eugene M. Elliot III,[90] Erwin Fahlbusch,[91] Sandra S. Frankiel,[92] Rosemary Goring,[93] Wim Haan, Jeffrey K. Hadden, Andrew Kopkind,[94] Stephen A. Kent , Ralph Larkin, Raymond Lee, Saul V. Levine,[95] James Lewis, Charles H. Lippy,[96] John Bassett McCleary,[97] Dennis Marcellino, Tim Miller, J. Gordon Melton, Ruth Prince, David Riches, [98] Paul Schnabel,[99] Robert P. Sutton [100] Jan van der Lans and Bryan R. Wilson[101]

Prem Rawat has at times been the subject of criticism from religious scholars, individuals related to the anti-cult movement of the 1970s, articles in the press and media, and former members.

Scholars' viewpoints

James V. Downton

James V. Downton, in his 1979 book Sacred Journeys, writes that in 1976 the majority of premies saw Rawat primarily as their "spiritual teacher, guide, and inspiration", and quit imputing great powers to him, assuming more responsibility for their own personal growth. He asserts that, since the beginning, Rawat appealed to his followers to give up beliefs and concepts, so that they could experience the Knowlegde more fully, but that it did not prevent followers from adopting a "a fairly rigid set of ideas about his divinity and the coming of a new age." [102]

Stephen Hunt

In 2003, Stephen J. Hunt wrote in Alternative Religions: A Sociological Introduction that Prem Rawat's teachings are a kind of "practical mysticism" and that he speaks "not of God, but of the god or divinity within." References to divinity suggest an acceptance of a "creative, loving power", but that he distances himself and his teachings from religious concepts. Concerning asceticisms, Hunts writes that Rawat "leaving his more ascetic life behind him, he does not personally eschews material possessions." Hunt describes that over time, critics have focused on "what appears to be his opulent lifestyle and argue that it is supported largely by the donations of his followers". Hunt also writes that by keeping a low profile the movement has managed to escape the gaze of publicity that surrounds other new religious movements.[103]

Reender Kranenborg

Kranenborg's impression was that the person of Maharaj ji had become more central over the course of years, and that Maharaj ji's assertions about himself and his vocation went further as he became more aware of the extent of his divinity. Kranenborg asserted that Jos Lammers, whom he labelled as an "ex-premie", made similar comments as van der Lans about Maharaji's lifestyle in his interview with the Dutch magazine Haagse Post. He further wrote that when Christians get into dialogue with premies that the lifestyle of the guru is of great importance. He argued that a satguru who drives an expensive cars and owns a big yacht may not be a problem for premies, but it is a problem for Christians and that they should ask premies why Maharaj ji does not live what he considers to be a normal and simple life.[104]

Jan van der Lans

Jan van der Lans, a professor of psychology of religion at the Radboud University Nijmegen, wrote about followers of gurus in a book published in 1981 commissioned by the KSGV, a Christian-inspired Dutch association that organizes conferences and publishes articles and books related to faith, religion and mental health[105]. Van der Lans wrote that Maharaji is an example of a guru who has become a charlatan leading a double life. On the one hand, he tried to remain loyal to the role in which he was forced and to the expectations of his students, yet on the other hand, his private life was one of idleness and pleasure, which was only known to small circle of insiders. According to van der Lans, one could consider him either a fraud or a victim of his surroundings. Van der Lans did not provide citations for his very critical assessment.[106]

Larkin, Foss

The sociologist Ralph Larkin with Daniel A. Foss wrote in 1978 that the DLM "emphasized formal structure without substantive content."[107] In response the religious scholar Dr. Ron Geaves, who is a student of Prem Rawat, accused them of bias, pointing to the number of students that were attracted to the DLM. [108]

Stephen A. Kent

The sociologist Stephen A. Kent described Prem Rawat's message as "banal" based on his personal experience with Rawat in the preface of his book and treats elsewhere in his book the criticism by the countercultural left on him in the 1970s.[109]

Saul V. Levine

The psychiatrist Saul V. Levine, who has published several articles about cults and new religious movements, wrote in an article titled Life in Cults, published in 1989, that public perception is that the Divine Light Mission, the Hare Krishna, the Unification Church, and the Children of God are seen as cults held in low esteem and that families' perceptions "that their children are being financially exploited" is one of the most pernicious and malevolent aspects of these groups, where "the leaders live in ostentation and offensive opulence." He also wrote that "[...] in the Divine Light Mission, members are expected to turn over all material possessions and earnings to the religion and to abstain from alcohol, tobacco, meat, and sex". His analysis was based on practices, such as the monastic life in ashrams, that were abandoned in the 1980s when Prem Rawat threw off anachronistic Hindu religious and cultural trappings previously associated with his message.[110]

J. Gordon Melton

J. Gordon Melton describes that in the mid-1970s several ex-members became vocal critics. Some of the criticism leveled at Rawat derives from Robert Mishler, former President of DLM ( who died in 1979). According to Melton in a 1986 article, Mishler's complaints that the ideals of the group had become impossible to fulfill and that money was increasingly diverted to Maharaji's personal use found little support and did not affect the progress of the Mission.[111] Another scholar, James Lewis, notes a number of ex-members made claims of brainwashing and mind control.[112] In a FAQ article about opposition to Maharaji and his message, Elan Vital claims that there are a handful of former students that actively engage in opposing Rawat, his students and organizations, and lists a series of complaints against them. '[113]

Margaret Singer

In the early 1980s the late Margaret Singer included the DLM (which was disbanded in the early 1980's [56] and renamed Elan Vital) in the list of groups she studied. In 1979, Singer mentioned the Divine Light Movement as one of a set of groups that have "intense relationships between followers and a powerful idea or leader", in an article in Psychology Today.[114].

Criticism in the media

After Prem Rawat's first arrival in the United Kingdom and United States in 1971 at the age of thirteen and through the 1970s he, his students and his organizations attracted media scrutiny and attention. Examples of articles appearing in the mainstream press in that decade include a 1974 article in Rolling Stone magazine and a 1979 article in the New York Review of Books.[115][116]

A 1980 article in The Washington Post reported that a Congressional Panel had singled out, among other controversial groups: "Guru Maharaj Ji's Divine Light Mission...as cults that employ manipulative techniques and turn children against their parents."[117] An article which mentioned the Divine Light Mission appeared in Time Magazine in 1997[118].

Criticism by former members

Gordon Melton describes that in the mid-1970s several ex-members became vocal critics[119]. James Lewis wrote that a number of ex-members became critics of the movement, attacking it with charges of brainwashing and mind control[120].

Some of the criticism leveled at Prem Rawat derives from Bob Mishler, a former president of DLM, and Robert Hand after they parted ways with Prem Rawat in the 1970s.[121] According to Melton in a 1986 article, Mishler's complaints that the ideals of the group had become impossible to fulfill and that money was increasingly diverted to Maharaji's personal use found little support and did not affect the progress of the Mission.[122]

Other viewpoints

David V. Barrett

The author David V. Barrett writes in his book The New Believers, that the "the flamboyant and definitively Eastern-inspired Divine Light Mission", has matured into something new changing its name to reflect a current emphasis as well as to distance itself from the past. Barrett asserts that the fact that Rawat came from a lineage of 'Perfect Masters', is no longer relevant as that is not where the authority comes from, neither from the recognition of Rawat as the master by his student, rather, this comes from "the nature of the teachings and its benefit to the individual." He also writes that "the Divine Light movement used to be criticized for the devotion given to Maharaji, who was thought to live a life of luxury on the donations of his followers" but a spokesperson "clearly conscious of past criticism, is emphatic that Maharaji has never earned anything from Elan Vital or any other movement promoting his teachings". Barrett continues that "the experience is an individual, subjective experience rather than on a body of dogma, and in its Divine Light days the movement was sometime criticized for this stressing of emotional experience over intellect." [123]

Wim Haan

An article published in the official magazine about religious movements of the Free university of Amsterdam written by Wim Haan, a student of theology at a Pastoral and Theology school in a small town in the Netherlands states that the battle against the mind sometimes degenerated into complete irrationality, that sometimes premies branded every critical and objective approach as "mind", and that they often avoided discussions with outsiders because these discussions could possibly stimulate the mind.[124]

Personal

Rawat lives with his wife in Malibu, California in the Unites States. They have four grown children. He is an experienced airline transport-rated and commercial pilot and holds a number of pilot ratings on jet airplanes and helicopters [125] . His résumé discusses skills in computer graphics, computer-aided design, and development of aviation software. He is listed as co-inventor on a US Patent for a world-time watch for aeronautic applications.[126] A US citizen since 1977,[127] he reports that he supports himself and his family as a private investor, and that he has contributed to the success of several startup companies in various industries, including software.[28]

Works by Prem Rawat

Books

  • Guru Maharaj Ji The living master: Quotes from Guru Maharaj Ji (1978) published by the Divine Light Mission
  • Rawat, Prem Clarity (2003) Published by The Prem Rawat Foundation 1st edition ISBN 0-9740627-1-5
  • Rawat, Prem Listen to the Cry of Your Own Heart - Something Wonderful Is Being Said, Visions International (1995)

Excerpts

Peace needs to be in everyone's life. Of all the things we have tried in this world, there is one thing we have never given a chance. That one thing is peace. If we want to hope for something, maybe we could hope in our heart that peace will come in our life. The peace that we are looking for is within. It is in the heart, waiting to be felt, and I can help you get in touch with it. It is not the world that needs peace; it is people. When people in the world are at peace within, the world will be at peace.
Maharaji.[128]

Footnotes and references

  1. Goring, Dictionary of Beliefs & Religions, pp.145
  2. Prem Rawat's quotes @ Wikiquote (2006). Retrieved on 2006-07-03. Birthday Celebrations, Prem Nagar (Haridwar), August 21 1962 as published in "Hansadesh" magazine, Issue 1, Mahesh Kare, January 1963
  3. Barrett 2001, page 327
    "At the heart of Elan Vital is this Knowledge — loosely, the joy of true self-knowledge. [...] The Knowledge includes four meditation techniques; these have some similarities in other Sant-Mat-derived movements, and may derive originally from surat shab yoga."
  4. Hadden, Religions of the world, pp.428
    "The meditation techniques the Maharaji teaches today are the same he learned from his father, Hansji Maharaj, who, in turn, learned them from his spiritual teacher [Sarupanand], 'Knowledge', claims Maharaji, 'is a way to be able to take all your senses that have been going outside all your life, turn them around and put them inside to feel and to actually experience you... What you are looking for is inside of you.'"
  5. Beit-Hallahami, The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Active New Religions, Sects, and Cults, pp. 85
    "When the founder died in 1966, the eight-year old Pretap stood up at the funeral to announce his ascent to the throne and became the movement's recognized leader. [..] Maharaj Ji was considered satguru, or the Perfect Master."
  6. Melton, Encyclopedic Handbook of Cults in America, pp.141-2 entry Divine Light Mission
    "Just six years after the founding of the Mission, Shri Hans Ji Maharaj was succeeded by his younger son Prem Pal Singh Rawat, who was eight when he was recognized as the new Perfect Master and assumed the title, Maharaj Ji. Maharaj Ji had been recognized as spiritually adept, even within the circle of the Holy Family, as Shri Hans' family was called. He had been initiated at the age of six [...] He assumed the role of Perfect Master at his father's funeral by telling the disciples who had gathered. [...] Though officially the autocratic leader of the Mission, because of Maharaji's age authority was shared by the whole family."
  7. 7.0 7.1 U. S. Department of the Army, Religious Requirements and Practices of Certain Selected Groups, pp.11-5
    "Following his death, Shri Hans Ji Maharaj appointed the youngest of his four sons, Sant Ji, as the next Perfect Master and thereby he assumed head of Divine Light Mission as decreed by his father. Since that time, Guru Maharaj Ji has inspired a world wide movement and the Mission is active in 55 countries."
  8. What happened in 1972 (2006). Retrieved on 2006-03-14.
  9. About Shri Satpal Ji Maharaj (2006). Retrieved on 2006-03-06.
  10. C. L. Tandon v. Prem Pal Singh Rawat, AIR 1978 Delhi 221 - "One valuable touchstone for determining whether the matters in issue are directly and substantially the same is whether the decision in the prior suit will bring the principle of res judicata into operation in the subsequent suit. Because the removal of Prem Pal Singh Rawat by Mataji and the nomination in his place of Satya Pal Singh Rawat and the competence of Mataji to do the same, issues of utmost importance, are alien to the Patna suit, the disposal of the suit at Patna will not stand in the way of the trial of the said issues by the appropriate courts."
  11. Stephen J. Hunt Alternative Religions: A Sociological Introduction (2003), pp.116-7, Ashgate Publishing, Ltd. ISBN 0-7546-3410-8 .He therefore changed the style of his message and relinquished the the Hindu tradition, beliefs, and most of its original eastern religious practices
  12. Cagan, A. Peace Is Possible, 2007, page 227."He worked toward earning the certifications and ratinigs necessary to operate various types of aircraft on his own".
  13. Prem Rawat on peace. (Retrieved February 2006)
  14. Leading Thai University Welcomes Prem Rawat (2005). Retrieved on 2006-03-04.
  15. Hans Jayanti (2000), pp.24-37
  16. Melton, Encyclopedic Handbook of Cults in America pp.141-2
  17. Prem Rawat's quotes @ Wikiquote (2006). Retrieved on 2006-07-03. Birthday Celebrations, Prem Nagar (Haridwar), August 21 1962 as published in "Hansadesh" magazine, Issue 1, Mahesh Kare, January 1963, Ram Lila Grounds, Delhi, India, October 29 1966 (translated from Hindi)
    "Today I will speak about love. What is love? How can one get love? Why should one get it? There are two kinds of love. One is the worldly connection. The other is attained through Knowledge. In this human body exists the love we have to discover. You should love one another and behave lovingly because when love comes, everything comes. You should speak to one another with love and humility. Love is the essence."
  18. The "Sant" term is derived from the Sanskrit sat (सद) (truth, reality) has overlapping usages, its root meaning being "one who knows the truth" or "one who has experienced Ultimate Reality". It differs from the false cognate "Saint" as it is often translated. The term Sant has taken on the more general ethical meaning of "good person", but is assigned specifically to the poet-sants of medieval India. Schomer, Karine, The Sant Tradition in Perspective, in Sant Mat: Studies in a Devotional Tradition of India in Schomer K. and McLeod W.H. (Eds.), pp.22-3, ISBN 0-9612208-0-5 According to Rigopoulos, (page 404) the word Sant is generally used for the bhakti saint poets of the Marathi and Hindi speaking areas.
  19. Sanskrit: बालयोगेश्वर = child master of yogis
  20. Lee, Sacred Tensionspp.109-110
    "Upon the death of his founder in 1966, one of his sons, Guru Maharaj ji, assumed leadership of the movement and won the hearts of many young Westerners." (p.109)
    Who Is Who In Guruism?
    "During the first 6 years of the new movement [DLM] its head was Shri Hans, the father of the young Maharaj Ji, who, at the age of 8 years, succeeded his father in 1966."
  21. Singh, Bihari. Maharaji accepted by his father's students, Retrieved Jan 2006.
    "Right after Shri Maharaj Ji’s death, the family and several mahatmas were discussing who would become Master after the 13 days of mourning were over. They were thinking about Bal Bhagwan Ji, who was the eldest son. When they asked me what I thought, I said, “Shri Maharaj Ji told us when Maharaji was born, ‘He’s going to take my message all over the world.’ [...]Some were suggesting that there be several gurus (all four brothers or some group of 5 or 7 gurus), and others were still in the Bal Bhagwan Ji camp. Particularly in India, when a father dies, the older son steps into his place. [...] Twelve days after Shri Maharaj Ji’s death, Rawat went on stage with a handkerchief on his head and spoke for about 45 minutes to the people who had gathered. After listening to him, everybody accepted him as their Master."
  22. Fahlbusch , Lochman, Pelikan, Vischer, and Barret The Encyclopedia of Christianity p.861
    "At the funeral of Shree Hans, his son Prem Pal Singh Rawat [...] comforted those who mourned his father's death with the thought that they still had perfect knowledge with them. The son himself had become the subject of this knowledge, the perfect master, in the place of his father, and took the title of "guru" and the name of Maharaj Ji, or great king, a title of respect of which other titular names were added. The honors paid him by his followers gave him the characteristic of a messianic child. These were supposedly his by nature and they helped him to eliminate rival claims from his own family."
  23. Melton, Encyclopedia of American religions, p.370-1
    "As they bewailed their loss at his [Shri hans Ji Maharaj] funeral, one of the four sons, then only eight-years old arose and addressed the crowd. [...] Thus Maharaj Ji proclaimed his lordship and established himself as the new head if his father's mission"
  24. Cameron, Who Is Guru Maharaj Ji?
  25. Rawat, Wolf, Inner Journey TC 00:21:45 (DVD)
    He [Shri Maharaj Ji] was the rock. And the next thing you know, he's not there. And it's like, "Do I really understand this? Do I really understand the dynamics of this?"And then I remember being in this hall where all these people had come to pay their respects to him. And they were waiting and crying. And I came on stage and I said, "Don't cry. Don't weep. Because what you really loved is still here and will always be there with you." And it was a powerful moment. It was very genuine. I saw these people weeping and I felt this is something that I can do. I want to help."
  26. Navbharat Times, 10 November 1970 (from Hindi original)"A three-day event in commemoration of Sri Hans Ji Maharaj, the largest procession in Delhi history of 18-miles of processionits culminated in a public event at India Gate, where Sant Ji Maharaj addressed the large gathering"
    Hindustan Times, 9 November 1970 (English)"Roads in the Capital spilled over with a 1,000,000 processionists, men, women and children marched from Indra Prasha Estate to the India Gate lawn. [...] People had come from all over the country and belonged to several religions. A few Europeans dressed in white were also in the procession."
    Guinness Book of World Records, 1970
  27. Kranenborg Oosterse Geloofsbewegingen in het Westenpp.64
    English translation "This prediction comes true very soon. In 1969 Maharaj ji sends the first disciple to the West. In the next year he holds a speech for an audience of thousands of people in Delhi. This speech is known as 'the peace bomb' and is the start of the great mission to the West." Dutch original "Deze voorspelling gaat al snel in vervulling. In 1969 stuurt Maharaj ji de eerste discipel naar het Westen. In het daaropvolgende jaar houdt hij een toespraak in Delhi voor een gehoor van duizenden mensen. Deze toespraak staat bekend als 'de 'vredesbom' en is het begin van de grote zending naar het Westen."
  28. 28.0 28.1 Maharaj.org (1999). Retrieved on 1999-01-01.
  29. Pryor, The Survival of the Coolest, p. 148.
  30. Prem Rawat September 30, 1973, published in 'Special Millennium '73 Edition' of the Divine Times, page 2, under the heading 'A Festival for the Whole World'
  31. Carrol, Nothing Happened, pp. 248
    "Divine light Mission attracted twenty thousand devotees to the Houston Astrodome in November 1973."
  32. "Guru Maharaj Ji", Biography Resource Center. Farmington Hills, Michigan., Thomson Gale. 2007.
    Through the mid-1970s the rapidly developing movement ran into trouble, beginning with its inability to fill the Houston Astrodome in a highly publicized event, Millennium 73.
  33. Meltonm Encyclopedic Handbook of Cults in America, pp.141-2
  34. Downton, James V. Sacred journeys: The conversion of young Americans to Divine Light Mission,(1979) Columbia University Press. ISBN # 0231041985
  35. Ibid. Religious Requirements and Practices p. 1-6
  36. Bowker, The Oxford Dictionary of World Religions, pp.287
  37. Leech, Soul Friend
  38. Barret, The New Believers (2003) pp.325
  39. Cagan, A. Peace Is Possible, 2007, pp.200: "At the wedding, in keeping with Indian tradition, he gave his new wife a new name — Durga Ji, an Indian goddess seen as the embodiment of feminine and creative energy."
    A different interpretation by Thomson Gale in "Guru Maharaj Ji", Biography Resource Center, 2007: "Then in 1974, Maharaj married his 24-year-old secretary, whom he described as an incarnation of the Hindu goddess Durga."
  40. "Guru Maharaj Ji", Biography Resource Center. Farmington Hills, Michigan, Thomson Gale, 2007: "The marriage further disrupted his relationship with his mother and older brothers. A lawsuit in India gave control of the Indian branch of the Divine Light Mission to Maharaj's mother and led to a complete break with her son, who maintained the complete support of the Western disciples."
  41. "Guru Tries to Take Control of Mission" in The Ruston Daily Leader, April 9, 1975: "Earlier this month, the guru's mother issued a statement in New Delhi saying she had disowned her son because of his pursuit of 'a despicable, nonspiritual way of life.' [...] Sources close to Rajeshwari Devi said she was upset because of her son's materialistic lifestyle, including a fondness for expensive homes and sports cars, and because of his marriage last year to his secretary."
  42. Gawenda, Michael, Guru Maharaj Ji Puts his Case The Age March 24 1982
  43. Price, The Divine Light Mission as a social organization. pp.279-96
    "Immediately following Maharaj Ji's marriage a struggle for power took place within the Holy Family itself. Maharaj Ji was now sixteen years old. He had the knowledge that his personal following in the West was well established. It is likely that he felt the time had come to take the reins of power from his mother, who still dominated the mission and had a strong hold over most of the mahatmas, all of whom were born and brought up in India. Another factor may well have been the financial independence of Maharaj Ji, which he enjoys through the generosity of his devotees. Note 27: Contributions from premies throughout the world allow Maharaj Ji to follow the life style of an American millionaire. He has a house (in his wife's name), an Aston Martin, a boat, a helicopter, the use of fine houses (divine residences) in most European countries as well as South America Australia and New Zealand, and an income which allows him to run a household and support his wife and children, his brother, Raja Ji, and his wife, Claudia. In addition his entourage of family, close officials and mahatmas are all financed on their frequent trips around the globe to attend the mission's festivals."
  44. Time Magazine 2 November 1972 Junior Guru"
  45. Time Magazine. April 28 1975 One Lord Too Many.
  46. Kranenborg, Reender (1982) Oosterse Geloofsbewegingen in het Westen/Eastern faith movements in the West (Dutch language) ISBN 90-210-4965-1
  47. Melton, J. Gordon. Encyclopedia Handbook of Cults in America p.143, Garland Publishing (1986) ISBN 0-8240-9036-5
  48. Richard M. Levine, The Seventies, 2000, p. 104
    "Reporter: "Are you the Messiah foretold in the Bible?; Maharaji Ji: Please do not presume me as that. Respect me as a humble servant of God trying to establish peace in this world"
  49. Tom Snyder, The Tomorrow Show, 1973
  50. Grenley, Peter Friday, September 3 1971 News Journal, Mansfield, Ohio. "I Was A Teen-Age Guru ...Story Of Maharaji Of India" Newspaper Archive.com
    When he is specifically asked whether or not he considers himself a human, however, he pauses, as though figuring out the answer. "Yes, I am a human," he says,. finally. "Hands bone, lungs. But guru is greater than God because if you go to guru, guru will show you God."
  51. Collier, Soul rush
    "In the Divine Light Mission there are two groups of people. There are those who sincerely believe that Guru Maharaj Ji is the Lord of Creation here in the flesh to save the world. And then there are those who know him a little better than that. They relate to him in a more human way... to them he is more of a teacher, a guide, a co-conspirator in their personal pursuit of a more heavenly way of life. I have always been in this second group of people... as charming and wise as Guru Maharaj Ji has seemed to me on occasion, I have never found any basis on which to nominate him Lord. Guru Maharaj Ji, though he has never made a definitive statement on his own opinion of his own divinity, generally encourages whatever view is held by the people he is with."
  52. Stephen J. Hunt Alternative Religions: A Sociological Introduction (2003), pp.116-7, Ashgate Publishing, Ltd. ISBN 0-7546-3410-8
  53. Lans & Derks, Premies Versus Sannyasins
    "According to Maharaj Ji, all evil should be attributed to the mind[...] indicat[ing] the same obstacle of freeing oneself from former bonds [...] DLM’s concept of mind refers primarily to a state of consciousness characterized by everything but passive, nonrational confidence and trust.""
  54. Partial list of honors The Prem Rawat Foundation website
  55. B/E Aerospace to buy Aircraft Modular Products. The South Florida Business Journal, April 1998 Available online
  56. 56.0 56.1 Melton, Encyclopedia of American Religions
    "In the early 1980s, Maharaj ji moved to disband the Divine Light Mission and he personally renounced the trappings of Indian culture and religion, disbanding the mission, he founded Elan Vital, an organization to his future role as teacher." [...]Maharaji had made every attempt to abandon the traditional Indian religious trappings in which the techniques originated and to make his presentation acceptable to all the various cultural settings in which followers live. He sees his teachings as independent of culture, religion, beliefs, or lifestyles, and regularly addresses audiences in places as culturally diverse as India, Japan, Taiwan, the Ivory Coast, Slovenia, Mauritius and Venezuela, as well as North America, Europe and the South Pacific.
  57. Kranenborg, Neohindoeïstische bewegingen in Nederland: een encyclopedisch overzicht, pp.178
    "Zij [Mata Ji, Prem Rawats moeder] onterfde hem spiritueel, in feite werd hij de beweging uitgezet. Maharaji ging zelfstandig verder, zij het met minder pretenties dan voorheen. Zo sprak hij sindsdien niet meer in goddelijke termen over zichzelf, maar noemde zich 'humanitarian leader'" (translation: "She[Rawat's mother, Mata ji] disinherited him spiritually. In fact, he was expelled from the movement. Maharaji continued on independently, with less claims pretensions than in the past, not no longer speaking with divine terms about himself, but calling himself instead as an 'humanitarian leader'."
  58. Geaves, From Divine Light Mission to Elan Vital and Beyond
  59. Chryssides, Historical Dictionary of New Religious Movements pp.115-6,
    Maharaji [still] delivers the four meditative techniques known as the Knowledge which featured in DLM and which afford self-understanding and self-realization, but he insists that such Knowledge is independent of culture and is by no means bound to the religious traditions of India.
  60. Colorado Secretary of State, Business Center.
  61. Elan Vital FAQs - About Elan Vital, Inc. Available online (Retrieved May, 2006)
  62. Visions International website. (Retrieved January 2006)
  63. Miller, America's Alternative Religions, pp.474
  64. The Times of India, December 4 1987
  65. Maharaji at Griffith University
  66. The Prem Rawat Foundation presents: Maharaji at Sanders Theatre, Harvard University
  67. Conversation with Prem Rawat, Available online. (Retrieved January 2006)
  68. "Words of Peace" by Maharaji receives TV Award in Brazil" Press release.
  69. "More than 1.5 million people seek Prem Rawat’s inspiration and guidance" (Retrieved February 2006)
  70. Guidestar report for non-profit organizations. Available online
  71. Humanitarian Initiatives The Prem Rawat Foundation (Retrieved January 2996)
  72. Prem Rawat Inaugurates First 'Food for People' Facility in Northeastern India (Retrieved March 25 2006)
  73. Elan Vital About (Retrieved January 2006)
  74. Volunteer-based organizations (Retrieved (February 2006)
  75. Frequently Asked Questions Available online (Retrieved January 2006)
  76. Chryssides, Historical Dictionary of New Religious Movements pp.210-1
    "Maharaji progressively dissolved the Divine Light Mission, closing the ashrams, affirming his own status as a master rather than a divine leader, and empahasizing that the Knowledge is universal, non Indian, in nature"[...] "This Knowledge was self-understanding, yielding calmness, peace, and contentment, since the innermost self is identical with the divine. Knowledge is attained through initiation, which provides four techniques that allow the practicioner to go within.
  77. Hadden & Elliot, ;;Religions of the world: A Comprehensive Encyclopedia of beliefs and practices pp.428
    "The meditation techniques the Maharaji teaches today are the same he learned from his father, Hansji Maharaj, who, in turn, learned them from his spiritual teacher [Sarupanand], 'Knowledge', claims Maharaji, 'is a way to be able to take all your senses that have been going outside all your life, turn them around and put them inside to feel and to actually experience you... What you are looking for is inside of you.'"
  78. Kranenborg, Reender, Oosterse Geloofsbewegingen in het Westen/Eastern faith movements in the West
  79. Geaves, R. R., From Totapuri to Maharaji: Reflections on a Lineage (Parampara), (2002). Paper presented at the 27th Spalding Symposium on Indian Religions, Oxford. March 2002.
  80. Visions International, Broadcast schedule of Maharaji's addresses (Retrieved January 2006)
  81. The Keys Retrieved November, 2005
  82. The Prem Rawat Foundation. About The Keys.
  83. Annual report TPRF(retrieved January 2006)
  84. Palmer & Keller, Religions of the World, pp.95.
  85. Record number of new students for Prem Rawat worldwide Press release
  86. TPRF website press room
  87. Prem Rawat Honored by International University of Peace
  88. Prem Rawat Interviewed on National TV in India Press release
  89. Cagan, A. Peace is Possible, pp.319, July 19, 2006
    "I’m convinced that the people of India and from other countries need to embrace in their hearts Prem Rawat’s call to peace. For the last forty years, as a messenger of peace, he has been making a constant effort to teach a lesson of peace. I would like to express my heartfelt feeling towards him as a most trusted and respected person who takes a message of joy to society and society puts it into practice. Doing so is the greatest success there can be in life. I want his message to reach the people around the world."
  90. Hadden, Jeffrey K. and Elliot III, Eugene M. "Divine Light Mission/Elan Vital" in Melton, Gordon J. and Bauman, Martin (Eds.) "Religions of the world: A Comprehensive Encyclopedia of beliefs and practices" ABC-CLIO (2002), ISBN 1-57607-223-1
  91. Fahlbusch E. (Ed.) The Encyclopedia of Christianity (1998). p.861, ISBN 90-04-11316-9
  92. Frankiel, Sandra S. in Lippy, Charles H. and Williams. Peter W. (Eds.) Encyclopedia of the American Religious Experience p.1521, harles Scribner's Sons (1988), ISBN 0-684-18863-5 (Vol III)
  93. Goring, Rosemary. Dictionary of Beliefs & Religions. p.145, Wordsworth Editions (1997), ISBN 1-85326-354-0
  94. Kopkind, Andrew. The Thirty Years' Wars pp.233-4. Verso, ISBN 1-85984-096-5
  95. Levine, Life in the Cults
  96. Lippy, Charles H.Pluralism Comes of Age: American Religious Culture in the Twentieth Century p.114, M. E. Sharpe (2002), ISBN 0-7656-0151-6
  97. McCleary Bassett, John. The Hippie Dictionary: A Cultural Encyclopedia of the 1960s and 1970s. p.140, Ten Speed Press(2004), ISBN 1-58008-547-4
  98. Prince Ruth & Riches Davies, The New Age in Glastonbury: The Construction of Religious Movements, pp.99-100, Berghahn Books (2001), ISBN 1-57181-792-1 - "Maharaj Ji was considered to be deeply spirtually imbued, enabling him to teach secret techniques of meditation that would be learned in stages as a process of initiation; for followers this meant two hours of meditation each day. Maharaj Ji;s techniques were considered to heighten spiritual experience and to help people realise their full potential in day-to-day living"
  99. Schnabel, Tussen stigma en charisma ("Between stigma and charisma"), 1982. Chapter II, p. 33; Chapter IV p. 99 and pp. 101-2; Chapter V p. 142.
  100. "Modern American Communes: A Dictionary. p44. Greenwood Publishing. ISBN 0313321817 -"In the 1980's, as Maharaji slowly dissolved tmpost of the ashrams and resigned his responsibilties as leader of the Divine Light Mission to become a lecturer, the communal aspects of the movement disappeared"
  101. Wilson, Bryan, New Religious Movements: Challenge and Response. pp.268-9, Routledge (UK), ISBN 0-415-20049-0
  102. Downton. Sacred Journeys pp.199
    Although there were still residues of belief in his divinity, in 1976, the vast majority [of premies] viewed the guru primarily as their spiritual teacher, guide , and inspiration. [...] Having quit imputing great powers to Guru Maharaj Ji by the end of 1976, premies assumed much more responsibility for their own spiritual growth. [...]From the beginning Guru Maharaj Ji appealed to premies to give up their beliefs and concepts so that the might experience the Knowledge, or life force more fully[...] Yet Guru Maharaj Ji's emphasis on giving up beliefs and concepts, did not prevent premies from adopting a fairly rigid set of ideas about his divinity and the coming of a new age.
  103. Hunt, Stephen J. Alternative Religions: A Sociological Introduction (2003), pp.116-7, Ashgate Publishing, Ltd. ISBN 0-7546-3410-8
    " The teachings provide a kind of practical mysticism. Maharaji speaks not of God, but of the god or divinity within, the power that gives existence. He has occasionally referred to the existence of the two gods—the one created by humankind and the one which creates humankind. Although such references apparently suggest an acceptance of a creative, loving power, he distances himself and his teachings from any concept of religion. It is not clear whether it is possible to receive Knowledge from anyone other than Maharaji. He claims only to encourage people to "experience the present reality of life now." Leaving his more ascetic life behind him, he does not personally eschews material possessions. Over time, critics have focused on what appears to be his opulent lifestyle and argue that it is supported largely by the donations of his followers. However, deliberately keeping a low profile has meant that the movement has generally managed to escape the gaze of publicity that surrounds other NRMs."
  104. Kranenborg, Reender (1982) Oosterse Geloofsbewegingen in het Westen/Eastern faith movements in the West (Dutch language) ISBN 90-210-4965-1
  105. KSGV: Objectives
    "Het KSGV onderneemt zijn activiteiten vanuit een christelijke inspiratie."
  106. Lans, Jan van der (Dutch language) Volgelingen van de goeroe: Hedendaagse religieuze bewegingen in Nederland page 117, written upon request for the KSGV published by Ambo, Baarn, 1981 ISBN 90-263-0521-4
  107. Foss, Daniel, and Ralph Larkin. "Worshipping the Absurd: The Negation of Social Causality Among the Followers of the Guru Maharaji'ji." Sociological Analysis, 39 (1978): 157-164.
  108. Geaves, Ron. From Divine Light Mission to Elan Vital and Beyond: An Exploration of Change and Adaptation, Nova Religio, March 2004, Vol. 7, No. 3, Pages 45-62
  109. Kent, Stephen A. From slogans to mantras: social protest and religious conversion in the late Vietnam war era, Syracuse University press, 2001, ISBN 0-8156-2948-6
  110. Levine, Saul V. Life in the Cults, article that appeared in the book edited by Marc Galanter M.D., (1989), Cults and new religious movements: a report of the committee on psychiatry and religion of the American Psychiatric Association, ISBN 0-89042-212-5
  111. Melton. Encyclopedic Handbook pp.144-5
    "However as the group withdrew from the public eye, little controversy followed it except the accusations of Robert Mishner [sic], the former president of the Mission who left in 1977. Mishner complained that the ideals of the group had become impossible to fulfill and that money was increasingly diverted to Maharaj Ji's personal use. Mishner's charges [...] found little support and have not affected the progress of the Mission."
  112. Lewism The Encyclopedia of Cults, Sects, and New Religions, p.210
    "a number of ex-members became critics of the movement, attacking it with charges of brainwashing and mind control"
  113. "Opposition to Maharaji and his message – Detractors and the negative message they convey"
  114. "Coming Out of the Cults", Psychology Today, January 1979.
    The people I have studied, however, come from groups in the last, narrow band of the spectrum: groups such as the Children of God, the Unification Church of the Reverend Sun Myung Moon, the Krishna Consciousness movement, the Divine Light Mission, and the Church of Scientology.
  115. Rolling Stone Magazine. The Seventies: A Tumultous Decade Reconsidered. Rolling Stones Press, 1998. p. 102, ISBN 0-316-75914-7
  116. du Plessix Gray, Francine. Blissing out in Houston. The New York Review of Books. vol.20, no. 20 (December 13, 1973) [1]
  117. Urged to Probe Cults, The Washington Post, March 14, 1980.
  118. The Lure of the Cult, Time Magazine, April 7, 1997
    The modern era of cultism dates to the 1970s, when the free inquiry of the previous decade led quite a few exhausted seekers into intellectual surrender. Out from the rubble of the countercultures came such groups as the Children of God and the Divine Light Mission, est and the Church of Scientology, the robotic political followers of Lyndon LaRouche and the Unification Church of the Rev. Sun Myung Moon. On Nov. 18, 1978, the cultism of the '70s arrived at its dark crescendo in Jonestown, Guyana, where more than 900 members of Jim Jones' Peoples Temple died at his order, most by suicide
  119. Melton, J. Gordon. Encyclopedia Handbook of Cults in America p.143, Garland Publishing (1986) ISBN 0-8240-9036-5
    "several deprogrammed ex-members became vocal critics of the mission"
  120. Lewis, James, The Encyclopedia of Cults, Sects, and New Religions, p.210, Prometheus Books, ISBN 1-57392-888-7
    "a number of ex-members became critics of the movement, attacking it with charges of brainwashing and mind control"
  121. Brown, Chip, Parents Versus Cult: Frustration, Kidnapping, Tears; Who Became Kidnappers to Rescue Daughter From Her Guru, The Washington Post, February 15, 1982
    "Suddenly there were new reports from people who'd actually managed the Divine Light Mission—Robert Mishler, the man who organized the business side of the mission and served for 5 1/2 years as its president, and Robert Hand Jr., who served as a vice president for two years. In the aftermath of Jonestown, Mishler and Hand felt compelled to warn of similarities between Guru Maharaj Ji and Jim Jones. They claimed the potential for another Jonestown existed in the Divine Light Mission because the most fanatic followers of Maharaj Ji would not question even the craziest commands. As Jim Jones convincingly demonstrated, the health of a cult group can depend on the stability of the leader.
    Mishler and Hand revealed aspects of life inside the mission that frightened the Deitzes. In addition to his ulcer, the Perfect Master who held the secret to peace and spiritual happiness 'had tremendous problems of anxiety which he combatted with alcohol,' Mishler said in a Denver radio interview in February 1979."
  122. Ibid. Encyclopedic Handbook pp.144-5 "However as the group withdrew from the public eye, little controversy followed it except the accusations of Robert Mishner [sic], the former president of the Mission who left in 1977. Mishner complained that the ideals of the group had become impossible to fulfill and that money was increasingly diverted to Maharaj Ji's personal use. Mishner's charges [...] found little support and have not affected the progress of the Mission."
  123. Barrett 2001, page 327
    "Unusually, the fact that Maharaji came from a lineage of 'Perfect Masters' is no longer relevant to the rewformed movement. This is not where the authority comes from, nor the recognitin of Maharaji as the master by his student; this comes rather from the nature of the teaching nd its benefit to the individual. [...] The Divine Light movement used to be criticized for the devotion given to Maharaji, who was thought to live a life of luxury on the donations of his followers; Whittaker, clearly conscious of past criticism, is emphatic that Maharaji has never earned anything from Elan Vital or any other movement promoting his teachings.[...] At the heart of Elan Vital is this Knowledge — loosely, the joy of true self-knowledge. [...] The Knowledge includes four meditation techniques; these have some similarities in other Sant-Mat-derived movements, and may derive originally from surat shab yoga. [...] The experience is on individual, subjective experience rather than on a body of dogma, and in its Divine Light days the movement was sometime criticized for this stressing of emotional experience over intellect. The teaching could perhaps best described as practical mysticism."
  124. Haan, Wim (Dutch language) De missie van het Goddelijk licht van goeroe Maharaj Ji: een subjektieve duiding from the series Religieuze bewegingen in Nederland: Feiten en Visies nr. 3, autumn 1981. ISBN 90-242-2341-5 (Based mainly on the Dutch branch of the Divine Light Mission.) Note: Haan was part of a critical movement within the Catholic church
  125. Cagan, A., Peace is Possible, pp.228
  126. US Patent Office
  127. "Guru Maharaj Ji becomes a citizen of the US", Rocky Mountain News, Wednesday, October 19 1977, Denver, Colorado, USA
  128. A letter from Prem Rawat (Retrieved January 2006)

Bibliographical references

  • Aagaard, Johannes, Who Is Who In Guruism? (1980), in Update, Vol. 4.3, October 1980
  • Barret, David V., The New Believers: A Survey of Sects, Cults and Alternative Religions (2001), Cassel, ISBN 1-84403-040-7
  • Beit-Hallahmi, Benjamin The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Active New Religions, Sects, and Cults, (1997), ISBN 0-8239-1505-0
  • Bowker, John (Ed.), The Oxford Dictionary of World Religions, Oxford University Press, New York (1997) ISBN 0-19-213965-7
  • Cagan, Andrea, Peace Is Possible: The Life and Message of Prem Rawat, Mighty River Press (2007), ISBN 978-0978869496
  • Cameron, Charles (Ed.), Who Is Guru Maharaj Ji? (1973), Bantam Books, Inc.
  • Carrol, Peter N. Nothing Happened: The Tragedy and Promise of America in the 1970s, Holt, Rinehart and Winston (1982), ISBN 0030583195
  • Chryssides, George D., Historical Dictionary of New Religious Movements, Scarecrow Press (2001) ISBN 0-8108-4095-2
  • Collier, Sophia, Soul rush: The odyssey of a young woman of the '70s, Morrow (1978), ISBN 0-688-03276-1
  • Downton, James V., Sacred journeys: The conversion of young Americans to Divine Light Mission,(1979) Columbia University Press. ISBN 0-231-04198-5
  • DuPertuis, Lucy (Summer 1986), How people recognize charisma: the case of darshan in Radhasoami and Divine Light Mission Sociological Analysis, University of Guam, Vol 47, No 2
  • Fahlbusch E., Lochman J. M., Mbiti J., Pelikan J., Vischer L, Barret D. (Eds.) The Encyclopedia of Christianity (1998), ISBN 90-04-11316-9
  • Geaves, Ron (2002), From Divine Light Mission to Elan Vital and Beyond: an Exploration of Change and Adaptation, 2002 International Conference on Minority Religions, Social Change and Freedom of Conscience, University of Utah at Salt Lake City
  • Geaves, Ron, From Totapuri to Maharaji: Reflections on a Lineage (Parampara),. Paper presented at the 27th Spalding Symposium on Indian Religions, Oxford. March 2002.
  • Geaves, Ron, Globalization, charisma, innovation, and tradition: An exploration of the transformations in the organisational vehicles for the transmission of the teachings of Prem Rawat (Maharaji), 2006, Journal of Alternative Spiritualities and New Age Studies, 2 44-62.
  • Goring, Rosemary (Ed.). Dictionary of Beliefs & Religions (1997) Wordsworth Editions, ISBN 1-85326-354-0
  • Haan, Wim, De missie van het Goddelijk licht van goeroe Maharaj Ji: een subjektieve duiding from the series Religieuze bewegingen in Nederland Feiten en Visies nr. 3, autumn 1981 (Dutch language) ISBN 90-242-2341-5.
  • Hadden, Jeffrey K. and Elliot III, Eugene M., Divine Light Mission/Elan Vital in Melton, Gordon J. and Bauman, Martin (Eds.) "Religions of the world: A Comprehensive Encyclopedia of beliefs and practices" ABC-CLIO (2002), ISBN 1-57607-223-1
  • Hans Jayanti (2000), DUO, New Delhi, Book published in commemoration of the 100th anniversary of Shri Hans' birth.
  • Hinnells, John (Editor), The Penguin Dictionary of Religions (1997), ISBN 0-14-051261-6
  • Kent, Stephen A. From slogans to mantras: social protest and religious conversion in the late Vietnam war era, Syracuse University press, 2001, ISBN 0-8156-2948-6
  • Kranenborg, Reender Dr. (1982) Oosterse Geloofsbewegingen in het Westen ("Eastern faith movements in the West") (Dutch language) ISBN 90-210-4965-1
  • Kranenborg, Reender, Neohindoeïstische bewegingen in Nederland: een encyclopedisch overzicht, Kampen Kok cop. (2002)
  • Lans, Jan van der and Dr. Frans Derks, Premies Versus Sannyasins in “Update: A Quarterly Journal on New Religious Movements”, X/2 (June 1986)
  • Lans, Jan van der Dr. Volgelingen van de goeroe: Hedendaagse religieuze bewegingen in Nederland (Dutch language), Ambo, Baarn, 1981 ISBN 90-263-0521-4
  • Lee, Raymond L M., Sacred Tensions: Modernity and Religious Transformation in Malaysia (1997), The University of South Carolina Press. ISBN 1-57003-167-3
  • Leech, Keneth. Soul Friend (2001), Morehouse Group, ISBN 0-8192-1888-X
  • Levine, Richard Michael. "Who is your guru" in the 1973 section of The Seventies: A Tumultuous Decade Reconsidered (Book by Rolling Stone). Little, Brown and Company (2000). ISBN 0-316-81547-0
  • Levine, Saul V. Life in the Cultsin Galanter, Mark M.D., Cults and new religious movements: a report of the committee on psychiatry and religion of the American Psychiatric Association (1989), ISBN 0-89042-212-5
  • Lewis, James, The Encyclopedia of Cults, Sects, and New Religionsm Prometheus Books, ISBN 1-57392-888-7
  • Lippy, Charles H., Pluralism Comes of Age: American Religious Culture in the Twentieth Century, M. E. Sharpe (2002), ISBN 0-7656-0151-6
  • McGuire, Meredith B. Religion: the Social Context 5th edition (2002) ISBN 0-534-54126-7
  • Melton, Gordon J., Encyclopedia of American Religions 7th edition. Thomson (2003), ISBN 0-78766-384-0
  • Melton, Gordon J., Encyclopedic Handbook of Cults in America, (1986), Garland Publishing, ISBN 0-8240-9036-5.
  • Miller, Tim (Ed.) America's Alternative Religions (S U N Y Series in Religious Studies) (1995) State University of New York Press. ISBN 0-7914-2397-2
  • Palmer, Spencer J. P. and Keller R. R., Religions of the World: A Latter-day Saint View, Brigham Young University (1997) ISBN 0-8425-2350-2
  • Price, Maeve, The Divine Light Mission as a social organization. (note 1) Sociological Review, 27(1979)
  • Pryor, William, The Survival of the Coolest: A Darwin's Death Defying Journey Into the Interior of Addiction (2004), Clear Press, ISBN 1-904555-13-6
  • Rawat, Prem and Wolf, Burt. Inner Journey: A spirited conversation about self-discovery (DVD). ISBN 0-9740627-0-7
  • Rawat, Prem, Maharaji at Griffith University (2004) ISBN 0-9740627-2-3
  • Rigopoulos, Antonio The life and teachings of Sai Baba of Shirdi State University of New York press, Albany, (1993) ISBN 0-7914-1268-7
  • (In Dutch:) Schnabel, Paul. Tussen stigma en charisma: nieuwe religieuze bewegingen en geestelijke volksgezondheid ("Between stigma and charisma: new religious movements and mental health"). Erasmus University Rotterdam, Faculty of Medicine, Ph.D. thesis, 1982. Deventer, Van Loghum Slaterus, ISBN 90-6001-746-3.
  • The Prem Rawat Foundation presents: Maharaji at Sanders Theatre, Harvard University (2005) ISBN 0-9740627-3-1
  • U. S. Department of the Army, Religious Requirements and Practices of Certain Selected Groups: A Handbook for Chaplains (2001), The Minerva Group, ISBN 0-89875-607-3

External links

Official websites of Prem Rawat