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Kashi Ashram: Claims of Rape, Child Abuse, and Kidnapping

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A week later, the lawsuit alleges, Ma Jaya ordered a church member to administer a pregnancy test to Molly. It was negative.

Kashi Ashram also denies the story, labeling it another manifestation of familial drama. "Ma and [Molly] were estranged for many years," spokeswoman Cirillo says.

Then, after Ma Jaya died, Molly was excluded from the inheritance, Cirillo says. "This is a bunch of baloney. She's not in the will; then, all of a sudden, she remembers this? Baloney." (Molly's lawyer, John Leighton, says his client discovered she wasn't in her mother's will only after she'd filed litigation. Says Molly: "I don't care about money; I just want people to know the truth.")

Carol Lourie, who was associated with the ranch for years and once criticized it, says she's dubious of Molly and her story. "I find her motives very suspicious. She could have brought the lawsuit when her mother was alive."

Despite the looming legal battle, Ma Jaya's recent commemoration glowed with mirth and smiles. Children ran and played among parents drinking tea. In the shadows of new houses rising in the woods, attendants traded favorite Ma Jaya stories — that time she named a student "God" because he was so handsome. Or how she always gave a lollipop to every child. The next day, as rain pounded the ashram, some of her followers disrobed and swam in the opaque pond where Ma's ashes had been scattered — and were again one with the guru.

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Terrence McCoy