NEW DELHI: This is a true story of love and bitterness, recrimination and reconciliation. It’s a story of glamour and spirituality, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll. It’s about four men whom the world worshipped, and the mentor they first adored, then abhorred. It’s a story that has never before been told in its entirety, though gossip and rumours have swirled around it for years.
Why exactly did relations between the Beatles and Maharishi Mahesh Yogi sour? Was there any truth to the allegations that the Maharishi had propositioned a friend of the Beatles? As an erstwhile disciple of the Maharishi, and a close friend of the Beatles, spiritual master Deepak Chopra is probably one of the few people who knew the real story.
He said after some prodding: “The Beatles — along with their entourage, which included Mia Farrow — were doing drugs, taking LSD, at Maharishi’s ashram, and he lost his temper with them. He asked them to leave, and they did in a huff. But when they went to the US, John Lennon gave an interview on the Johnny Carson show, accusing Maharishi of being a dirty old man. Later, Lennon also wrote a satirical song about Maharishi, which went: Sexy Sadie, what have you done/you made a fool of everyone.”
“But I’m sure there was never any truth to Lennon’s allegations,” added Chopra.
“In fact, the rumour was that Maharishi had misbehaved with Mia Farrow, but I met Mia years later at the airport while taking a flight to India, and she asked me to tell Maharishi that she still loved him.”