Sorry to hear that those relationships with premies are so intense. Funny too, that it's them, and not you, who are breaking off the communication, but that's to be expected, I think. It leads me to ask which are the parties who feel they have something to protect -- who feel there is some kind of risk in continuing the relationship and therefore must end it.
I do have one or two friends who are still premies. Granted, we don't communicate often, and when we do Maharaji is a tiny part of our discussions. They know, however, that I am a "vocal" ex-premie, the
"vocal" part being the most distressing to them. Indeed, if I did just, as you say, "move on" it would be so much more convenient for them because there wouldn't be a huge elephant sitting in the corner whenever we meet. They would know I would be unlikely to raise the issue, and they, of course, never, ever do.
The Maharaji cult is a belief system that requires a great amount of effort by which to avoid all analysis because of all the contradictions, outright flasehoods and just plain idiocy -- especially if one compares the comments, dialogue and events of the past with those of the present. So, you can't think about it too much, and actually fear doing so because every premie knows that if you scratch below the surface the house of cards would fall very quickly.
When someone you know, trust and have respect for, someone who you know from past involvement is sincere and intelligent -- when someone like that not only rejects the belief system, but actually talks about it, and about the contradictions, and -- oh my God -- the past, it's extremely uncomfortable, and extremely difficult because you are torn between human relationships, feelings, trust, love, and your belief system and because the premie knows on some level, that you might actually be persuasive, can't be written off as just an angry fool, etc.. It takes so much energy to continue to rectify those things that you get exhausted. Hence, most premies eventually distance themselves from ex-premies. I know I did, when I was a prmie. For ex-premies, talking to premies is frustrating, but it can't be nearly as exhausting as it is for the premies to interact with ex-premies. The ex-premie doesn't really have anything to protect anymore, although they may want the premie to understand that their analysis and criticisms are genuine. No wonder it is them, and not you, who are breaking things off.
I mean, you could just never mention the subject again, but I think it's like this: you (and a number of the other people who participate on the Forum), are the kind of person that for his own reasons of justice and integrity is not about to "forget the past." No sane person would, really, as that implies blinded ignorance. So, you, in particular, are a special problem for premies, as we all are who, now with the internet, make our opinions known on this subject, and even post writings and pictures from "the past." Pictures and quotes, not to mention eye witnesses are very hard to rationalize. This is why, to premies, the Forum "sucks."
I also think this may be part of the whole phenomenon you were talking about concerning some get-together for younger premies, who hadn't messed up "the past." It's just easier to accept that the premies fucked things up, resulting in all those embarrassing pictures and quotes on the Internet, than to think Maharaji has something to do with it. Indeed, Maharaji himself has promulgated that idea numerous times.
I do wonder what your friend meant when he said this:
And yes, I think the Forum sucks. Nothing new. For years it has, in some guise or other, made people aggressively and patronisingly and superciliously righteous.
Is he saying that the ex-premies are "righteous" or is it that the existence of the Forum makes premies be that way? I can't tell from what he wrote. Also, the "nothing new" comment kind of suggests this guy is following the Forum fairly closely, or else how would he know. On the other hand, I've actually learned a lot of "new" things about both the present and the past on EPO and the Forum and I am informed that quite a few premies visit here to fing out what is "going on" as well.
Anyhow, I'm afraid your very existence challenges a very fragile belief system. You talking about it, and they being unable to either 1) bring you back to the fold, or 2) shut you up, expecially about "the past" means they are likely to give up at some point -- either that or reject the belief system themselves. Those are the only two ways to relieve the stress, which is very tiring.