Richard Fletcher Attempted to Beat Pat Halley to Death With a Hammer
It's not many people who have been named as one half of the reincarnation of St Peter, been considered to be the World Champion Meditator (albeit by only a small group of premies of Guru Maharaj Ji) and to have been an accessory to the attempted murder of a person (who had perpetrated the heinous crime of throwing a shaving cream pie into the face of your Incarnation of God on Earth) by repeated blows to the head with a heavy metal object. If mucho meditation turns you into a person who convinces a young hippie journalist, Pat Halley, to come alone to hear the sordid truth about your Master and stands by and watches a Mahatma hammer six blows with a heavy metal blackjack into Halley's head and then runs away leaving the victim unconscious in a blood splattered room then it's a very good thing that most followers of Prem Rawat's weren't serious meditators and that practising Rawat's so-called "Knowledge" was so futile. Of course, it had nothing to do with meditation, it had everything to do with religion. To paraphrase Weinberg, "but for good people to do evil things, that takes religion." The young Guru Maharaj Ji opined that Fletcher might be the first mere mortal (other than Himself) to "really realise the Knowledge" but this was nonsense. Nobody else has ever "realised the Knowledge" and nobody else ever will. There was nothing special about Richard Fletcher, he was just weaker and more disturbed than the average premie and more involved in his self-absorbed masturbatory fantasy:
Fletcher, too, is no ordinary premie. In the divine pecking order of reincarnated saints (every Divine Light Mission honcho is considered the living consciousness of either a Christian or Indian saint, depending on religious persuasion), he and his twin brother John are considered the reincarnation of St. Peter. "They have the most incredible experiences on meditation - they meditate four and five days nonstop, just twenty-four hours a day," says former political activist and premier premie Rennie Davis. "The whole house they're in just feels their vibration."
Since the inception of the internet, some premies claiming to be friends of Fletcher's have posted that he feels deeply sorry about his involvement in the attempted murder and that he was unable to understand how he became involved. This is probably true. Feeling deeply is what premies are supposed to do and they believe that this feeling, their "experience" validates the "Knowledge" … somehow. Understanding their situation is also something they cannot do though it's not difficult, they are dupes of a hopelessly inadequate, shallow and nasty minor cult leader. Nevertheless, Richard Fletcher has never apologised or atoned for his crime in any way and he had 40 years to do it before Halley died. He offered no compensation to Halley nor went to the police to confess and take his punishment. He did have to suffer a free trip and holiday in Hawaii.
Rennie Davis claimed that Fletcher "was completely innocent - Fakiranand was behind the whole thing." Of course, Davis is hardly an exponent of sober, careful discussion or logical thinking. A criminal conspirator and accessory to attempted murder can only be "completely innocent" in "Maharaji's world," a world where the Lord of the Universe behaves like a mafia hood. Unfortunately these disturbing ideas were current amongst premies at the time:
When asked to explain the incident, Davis giggled in the peculiar manner common to most premies when in a state of divine bliss. "I really feel Guru Maharaj Ji is doing everything," said Davis. "He had the pie thrown in his face, and he had Fakiranand do that - the whole thing is just one gigantic lila that operates on so many levels. I saw it more as a test for the premies than anything else. Lila, in guruspeak, means "divine game."
As "a test for the premies," the blood, ploy worked well indeed. Those premies who found out that Fakiranand was the culprit thought that Pat Halley was lucky to have had such a direct experience from such a holy man. "Think of how realized Pat will be once he finally receives Knowledge," a nineteen-year-old premie woman told me munching on an ice-cream cone. (A love of ice cream is the only vice premies will admit.) "If by slaughtering a whole block of people I could bring them to Knowledge I'd do it in an instant. I'd slit your throat right now if Guru Maharaj Ji told me to."
Security Guard: Personally, personally, if I was, listen, if I was there I would have slit his throat on the spot (slit his throat?) on the spot (on the spot for throwing a pie?) definitely (you're a dangerous element) this is how I feel (I think that's a fanatic statement - so you'd kill a man for throwing a pie?) on the spot
There was at least one premie, though a very minor and intellectual (Prem Rawat really despised intellectuals) one, who saw the writing on the wall (in blood no less) and left Divine Light Mission and Sophia Collier, a far more important premie was somewhat disturbed by Rawat's failure to aggressively prosecute the offenders (little did she know) and only left DLM once she understood Rawat was a drunk and nasty as well and DLM was a farce.
- Blackjack Love - The New York Review of Books December 13, 1973
- I See The Light - Penthouse magazine July 1974
- Perfect Bliss and a Broken Skull - Berkeley Barb Jan 11-17, 1974
- Guru's Secret - Fifth Estate Magazine, September 1973
- Guru Goons Loose - Fifth Estate Magazine, December 1973