Saphlanand and Gurucharanand with early English premies
Mahatma Guruchar(n)anand *

Mahatma Gurucharanand There is little doubt that Mr Charan Anand formerly known as Mahatma Gurucharanand was the major figure in the initial success of Prem Rawat in the West. Without him it is unlikely that Divine Light Mission would have been ready to take advantage of the brief window of opportunity for its major recruitment success in the period 1970 to 1973. Charanand provided the impetus, inspiration and initiations that created the infrastructure to allow the young Prem Rawat, then calling himself Guru Maharaj Ji, to travel to the West, disobey his mother and stay in the West indulging himself. He was nearly certainly an important influence in the 8 years' old "Sant Ji" being proclaimed the Satguru in 1966.

Mahatma GurucharanandIs there a Guiness Boook of Records category for the person who has squeezed more eyes than anyone else alive? Mahatma Gurucharanand aka Enlighteningthumbsofpainanand is that man if you don't include Indian residents. Call him what you will, he is a phenomenon, the man who tirelessly squeezed eyes for 25 - 30 years? He has squeezed eyes all over the world, a truly international squeezer. He squeezed eyes of any sex, color, caste or creed, completely unprejudiced. He even went where no ophthalmologist will go, he will squeeze the eyes of a blind person.

Mike Finch, the 100th person Gurucharanand initiated in England recalls up to fifty "ex-beatniks, hippies, spiritual seekers, drop-outs, artists, the inquisitive" and the unlucky would gather to be enthralled and enchanted before being initiated ie revealed the techniques of meditation, by Gurucharanand. Finch remembers the pain to this day. But there are limits to what you can do with this "Knowledge" which after all is just squeezing your eyes and ears, poking your tongue backwards and concentrating on your breath and sometimes there are people confident enough to ask the embarrassing question: "Just press on your eyes? What's that?" Understandably, Gurucharanand despite squeezing more eyes than anyone else on earth today was unable to provide a satisfactory explanation. "Mahatma Saphlanand" who was Gurucharanand's companion and entré into the London "hippie" culture told this story:

Mahatmas Gurucharnanand and Sampurnanand train Prem Rawat to be Satguru It was a dark and stormy night in the winter of '69--'70, in a West Kensington basement. The total no. of premies in the West was about 20. Charan Anand, had given knowledge to just one guy, with me assisting. He was one whom the Beatles might have called "one of the beautiful people", a gentle souled flower child called Rory. (I first met him years before at a party in Chelsea, in the kitchen where we were talking on a pretty cosmic level with Robin Williamson of the Incredible String Band. On the table sat a large jug of orange juice laced to the tune of about 500 mics. of LSD per glass.) When Charan had finished, Rory started to weep. "Aahhh" said Charan, thinking he was weeping for joy. But he wasn't. He said: "That's it? All my high expectations of a great revelation of God, all this waiting for days and nights listening to your talks, raising my hopes into thinking it was going to be a mind blowing experience, better than acid? Just press on your eyes? What's that?" "Explain Saph", said Charan. I tried, but I saw he had a point. Mahatmaji was visibly disturbed. We gave up trying to persuade him that it was quite profound.

There is a copy of one of Gurucharanand's satsangs from a Divine Light magazine. Unfortunately it appears to be one he wrote rather than spoke and shows none of the charm he surely must have possessed to get Divine Light Mission off the ground. It is full of hyperbole and false promises about the instanteous bliss of Satguru's Knowledge and contains the Catch 22. Who can totally dedicate themselves? Who can be sincere and selfless?

It is not child's play to become lost into pure consciousness, it can only be achieved by the Divine Grace of the Perfect Master which comes to those devotees who have totally dedicated themselves in order to spread His Sacred Knowledge for the sake of humanity. He who pleases his Spiritual Master through sincere devotion and selfless service reaches the highest goal of life in the twinkling of an eye. By the boundless compassion of the Perfect Master every human being becomes capable not merely of knowing about the ultimate Truth, they can also merge into it and receive direct experience instantaneously.

Gurucharnanand had been heavily involved in the proclamation of Prem Rawat as the new Perfect Master on the death of his father. He is seen in these photos close to the young Prem Rawat at this time despite not being a senior mahatma. Rawat is dressed in 2 of these photos in the type of costume his father would wear when posing as Krishna.
Mahatmas Gurucharnanand and Sampurnanand train Prem Rawat to be Satguru
Mahatma Gurucharnanand Applies the Tilak to Prem Rawat the New Satguru

Gurcharanand appeared in Indian footage in the film Satguru Has Come: "As the time approached for Shri Hans Ji Maharaj to leave this world the young Guru Maharaj Ji began to manifest his divinity. His words moved his father's disciples to tears of joy. After a lifetime devoted to bringing Knowledge of God to millions of followers, Shri Hans Ji Maharaj left his mortal body in Perfect Peace."

Mahatmas Gurucharanand and Ramanand chanting
Mahatma Gurucharanand
Mahatma Gurucharanand
Prem Rawat In India
Prem Rawat arrives in England
Prem Rawat arrives in England
Prem Rawat in the USA

In 2009, while hosting a dinner party, with one of his new Best Friends Forever Roger Koch, Charanand told his then current version of the events leading up to the young Prem Rawat being acclaimed as the Satguru, Perfect Master and Lord of the Universe in 1966. It fits into the events of the "official story" while denigrating Rawat's mother who Charanand claims was arguing over who should be the next Satguru while Charanand and Sampuranand were taking events into their own hands.

Killarney Heights, 1972 The power of Love He kick started Divine Light Mission in Australia in September, 1972 when he came for 10 days and initiated several people thereby doubling the number of premies and returned with the pudgy, moustache-hopeful guru the next month.

In this editorial in the Millenium edition (November 1973) of And It Is Divine magazine Mahatma Gurucharanand repeats the main doctrines of Rawatism, "once again the almighty Lord has incarnated in human form" and "his true Knowledge which leads man to perfection." After a decade or more of meditation, Gurucharanand seems oblivious to his lack of progress to perfection.

But unfortunately most people of the world do not understand this simple fact and miss the opportunity of receiving his true Knowledge which leads man to perfection. Many great souls came in the past but people did not recognize their glory. But now once again the almighty Lord has incarnated in human form to reveal to us the fundamental truth within ourselves. So let us not repeat the same mistake over and over again, and let its take the full advantage of his supreme Knowledge.

Gurucharnanand was one of the very few mahatmas who remained loyal to the young Rawat in 1975 when his mother disowned him. He had then been living in relative luxury in the West adored by the young Western followers for at least 5 years and a return to the poverty, celibacy and discipline of an Indian mahatma's ashram would have been very difficult and most uncomfortable. He always followed his own advice and kept his priorities perfect:

Your only occupation and duty in this world is to keep yourself content, self-wise and self-blissed. You have no responsibility to anybody but to yourself. We are serious criminals to ourselves if we violate the most sacred love, cheerfulness and peace.

courtoflove In the late 1970's and early 1980s Gurucharanand was most famous for his bhajans, interminable Indian dirges sung in a monotone that the Perfect Master, Prem Rawat, encouraged him to sing and record in a group called the Holy Jesters. In the center capture from a 1979 video we see Mahatmas Gurucharanand and Jagdeo who lived in Rawat's Malibu Residence and used his position in supervising the education of premie children to sexually abuse some of them. He was sent back to India in secret after the scandal became public where Raj Vidya Kender looked after him.

Premies watch Prem Rawat (Maharaji) dance in total awe

Mahatma Gurucharanand and the pedophile priest Mahatma Jagdeo dance in the front row of the 20,000 strong crowd at Hans Jayanti festival in Kissimmee, Florida with Glen Whittaker and pretty well every late 1970's initiator and honcho dancing nearby.

In 1996 Charanand told this story in the 25th Anniversary (of Rawat's arrival in England) Edition of Divine Times (a magazine/newsletter that had been defunct for about 15 years by then)

I am extremely thankful to Maharaji for allowing me to be so close to him for all these years. I pray in my heart to be with him for the rest of my life to the very last breath. Throughout these years, I have enjoyed myself to the fullest by practicing Knowledge, and participating in his activities. I know without his help, love and care, I would not be where I am today. I feel so fortunate that I had an incredible opportunity to spend almost 18 years with Shri Maharaj Ji. He was so beautiful and divine. I loved and adored him very dearly, and I still do. He not only helped me understand the importance of a Master, but also prepared me for the transition when he left his body. I never felt left alone. I immediately recognized his presence in Maharaji.

Gurucharanand was the main star of the 2001 Elan Vital 'Passages' video. Click here to see his contributions.

The Same Old Shtick
The Same Old Shtick

Mahatma Gurucharanand We also have his testimony from the defunct Voice Of Peace website which was created to provide short reminiscences of Rawat's most memorable moments.

On the evening before Maharaji was to publicly accept the role of Master, I was standing with him on the roof of Shri Maharaj Ji's residence. He was very serene and quiet. The sky was clear, the moon was full. He turned his eyes toward the stars and the moon and said to me so innocently, "Look Charan Anand, I feel Shri Maharaj Ji watching us to see whether we are lost in our sorrow or are still remembering him and how dear the propagation of Knowledge was to him." I was so deeply moved and felt total admiration and reverence. Surrounded by so much sorrow, let alone his own unimaginably intense personal feelings of loss - in that most painful of moments, he retained such a profound awareness of Shri Maharaj Ji's wishes for him. All I could feel was that if Maharaji at this tender age has such strength and clarity under these challenging circumstances, then what won't he be able to do when he grows older? (from Voice of Peace website, downloaded on 10th December, 2006, website defunct, archived on the Wayback Machine)

As of 2008 Gurucharnanand, or Charan Anand - golfer and tennis player, is still touring for Rawat though he did not remain a celibate monk all those years. He plays the role of elder statesman of Rawatism appearing at Golf tournaments and other fund-raising events for the wealthier of Rawat's followers. As the picture at far right shows, Charananand has discovered true bliss at last.

Daya Rawat Practising Meditation
Daya Rawat Sharing Satsang With Prem Rawat's Most Senior Student Mahatma Gurucharanand
Charananand schmoozing with major donors
Charananand schmoozing with major donors
Charananand schmoozing with major donors

Charananand has discovered true bliss at last Rawat provided an illuminating discussion on Gurucharanand's clichés, "philosophy" and hypocrisy in 1989 when he spoke in Brussels:

If somebody would have told Gurucharanand "One day you're gonna be playing golf" that's before he left for India he would have said "What's that?" "Mahatma Ji it's a game, take a little ball … If somebody would have said that to him then in India I know what he would've said. "My dear friend, I have something better happening inside of me. You have something better happening inside of you." "No no Mahatma Ji you're going to play this game." "I am already playing it." Okay you know in those days, in those days philosophy was really cheap, all you had to make was a little comment and you got a year (ear?) full of it. These days it's a little harder to come by but it's there. "Mahatma Ji, when you go to the West one day you will be playing tennis." "What is that?" "Mahatma Ji you take a ball…" The question would be, "Do all Westerners play with balls? Big balls, little balls." "Mahatma Ji you would take this ball and you would hit it and the idea is to keep making the balls go back and forth and back and forth and back and forth and back and forth." "Oh, that's what I do with this Name." So already there is a tennis inside of me but someday you know somebody says that's what you're gonna do sure it's I I can almost guarantee you that's what the answer would have been to yeah one day that's what's going to happen. No no yes yes. Now from what I understand he's a very avid player of golf, tennis. What's next?

In 2009 he appeared in a short film, a Soul Biography, performing the same old shtick, if Rawat was as good at his shtick as Charananand is, then Rawat might be famous. But what a hypocrite Charan is when he talks about village life. He left as soon as he could, has never gone back, and has lived in the West since 1969. It wasn't too luxurious in the beginning but it soon picked up and now he swans around playing golf and enjoying every modern comfort. He hasn't even had to squeeze aspirants' eyes since 1990ish anymore just make these sort of speeches and schmooze the major donors.
The Same Old Shtick
The Same Old Shtick

Learning More:

Gurucharanand mentioned by Prem Rawat in his speeches

The name apparently can and has been transliterated as 'Gurucharanand' and 'Gurucharnanand'. As I prefer the first version I will use it but not religiously.

Mahatma Gurucharanand With The Young Lord Of The Universe Prem Rawat

Looks A Lot Like Holy Breath