The Queen of the Holy Hell
File under: Amma-All-Over-The-Planet and Satscams
We admit we've been remiss [Ed.note: blame Facebook] in our delay to announce and review what's sure to be an instant classic of anti-cult literature, Gail Tredwell's "Holy Hell." It's hard to put into words just how mind-blowing this book is in light of the popular mythology of Ammachi, the "Hugging Saint" who tours the world pouring millions into foreign banks to do who knows what with.
But we tried:
I have an overwhelming desire to begin this review with the words "holy hell," because that's how I felt after I reached that point in the book where the exposed hypocrisy just keeps piling up like a Arunachala-sized mountain of dung. While none of it really surprised me, all of it was surprising to read, as well as funny, heartfelt, and sincere. Gail is a true modern spiritual hero, so much more than the one she served, who in the end has always only been the scheming beneficiary of the popular idea that she is God. As much as the dark side now lies exposed in the blazing light of public opinion, the real lesson of the book is how Gail's sincerity and inner strength carried her through years of abuse. Some may say she was ill-advised, or even stupid to endure it, but I suspect that it was worth every second to her now. Amma's cruelty and spite have hammered Gail into an outstanding example of triumph over one of the world's most pervasive cults of personality. Hopefully she will serve as an example to others that their "goddess" can at times be little more than a stunningly entitled brat with an apparent personality disorder who essentially spreads lies about nondual realization by her completely fabricated persona. This book will undoubtably become one of the great works of anti-cult biography.