World Tour and Bombay
“His teaching could not be accepted. Buddha was thrown out
of this country. He was not accepted anywhere. A Buddha is
always thrown out. Where ever he comes he will be thrown out
because he hits you so deeply you cannot tolerate it.
He says you are not.” The Way of the White Clouds (1975)
6.0 A World Odyssey
When Osho returned to his homeland India in mid-November 1985 and settled in the lower Himalayas we might have expected he would have a chance to recuperate and regain his health after his incarceration in the USA. Not so.
It was fifteen years after he initiated his first sannyasins at a meditation camp in Manali, that he returned to Kulu Valley, but within weeks renewed political pressure and refusal of visas to members of his staff made him discontinue his discourses and leave India for Kathmandu in Nepal where he resumed his talks and press conferences.
Only until he had to journey onwards to Crete in Greece where in Agios Nikolaos he again delivered discourses to his followers who once again could come and sit with him. But not for long. Before his visa to Greece had expired, the doors to his house were broken by Greek police, again directed by political interests, this time the Greek Orthodox Church and no other than the American ambassador in Athens.
And now began an Odyssey which left him ‘persona non grata’ in the airports of Geneva in Switzerland, Arlanda (Stockholm), and Heathrow (London), before a few weeks retreat could be found in Ireland. Visa applications for Spain and Italy were stalled while governmental preventive decrees forbade him any access to Holland and Germany, but in Punta del Este, Uruguay, at last he could settle in apparent permanence and deliver a series of talks on esoteric matters which he hadn’t touched since early days in Bombay. But this idyll could not last – after two months, his visa was cancelled, again due to US intervention and on he went to Portugal for some weeks of resting before he returned to Bombay in late July 1986.
Before that a US navy aircraft had been following him with officials carrying dossiers to be presented to foreign authorities who considered letting him into their country. The final score of his World Tour reached 21 democracies who had either deported him or denied him entry and passed him on to some other country where he might try his luck once more.
So his discourses during World Tour involved a variety of settings. At Kulu Manali in the Himalayas they were held on the veranda of his room next to the Beas River or indoors in his living room. In Kathmandu in the sitting room of his suite and in the large conference room on the ground floor of the Soaltee Oberoi Hotel. In Crete in Agios Nikolaos under a carob tree outside his residence at the sea, and in Punta del Este, Uruguay, several long series were delivered in the sitting room of his residence. In Kulu Manali as well as in Uruguay his talks were exclusively for a small gathering consisting mainly of members of his household who travelled with him, unlike in Kathmandu and on Crete where his disciples had the possibility for travelling to sit with him.
The discourses were question-and-answer sessions, often including interviews with journalists who came to report what was going on during the World Tour. Discourses were published in the series ‘Light on the Path. Talks in the Himalayas’ (1988) from Kulu Manali and Kathmandu, ‘The Sword and the Lotus. Talks in the Himalayas’ (1989) from Kathmandu, ‘Socrates Poisoned again after 25 Centuries’ (1989) from Crete, ‘Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay’ (1989), ‘The Path of the Mystic. Talks in Uruguay’ (1988), and ‘The Transmission of the Lamp. Talks in Uruguay’ (1989) all from Uruguay.
Finally he arrived in Bombay and stayed in the house of a friend in the Juhu Beach area with the biggest room in the house overfilled with his listeners, at first mostly Indians who had not been able to see him since he left Poona in 1981. There they witnessed him speaking in Hindi once again, in ‘Koplen Phir Phoot Aayin’, for a short while before resuming his discourses in English. Now began a new discourse series ‘The Rajneesh Upanishad’ (1986) followed by the series ‘Beyond Enlightenment’ (1986) and ‘Sermons in Stones’ (1987). Again, just before the police intervened, he left Bombay and arrived in his ashram in Poona where the last phase of his work was to attract followers from almost everywhere.
When Osho was giving his first English discourse series in Poona in 1974, ‘The Way of the White Clouds’, no one would have imagined that he would later on be travelling from cloud to cloud on a World Tour, which all too clearly showed that – once again – there was no room at the inn for a man of his stature. Any reader who feels puzzled by those events mentioned during his tumultuous World Tour is encouraged to have a look at the sources presented and draw his/her own conclusions.
Osho on going on a world tour
“On the morning of January 21st , Bhagwan answered a question from the Dutch ‘Rajneesh Times’ about the proposed world tour: “The well is going to the thirsty. Is the world ready to receive the well?”
“Yes, it is true, the thirsty have always come to the well; but it is an old proverb, it is not contemporary. Now you can have water coming to your home wherever you are. Of course in ancient days the well could not go to the people, but now tap water can reach everywhere, anywhere. And I am absolutely contemporary, so I say, for the first time the well will go to the thirsty. This is the only possible way to prevent governments, religions, the political parties from preventing my people reaching me. This way I can reach more people, new people also who may not have come to me, who may not have ever thought to come to me…
My going around the world,” Bhagwan went on to say “may create new troubles for me from the vested interests; but I never think of them as troubles. The more they become afraid of me, the more they are losing ground. And it is better to fight all over the world simultaneously than to fight in different countries at different times, because the fight is the same; why not make it a concentrated effort all over the world?” (Forman 2002, p. 149)
Devika is quoting Osho
“There is an early letter of Osho’s recorded in the book entitled ‘A Cup of Tea’ in which Osho says in reply to somebody: ‘Do not ever worry about me – not even mistakenly… Men like me are born to be crucified… Our mission is fulfilled only when stones are showered, not flowers.” (Devika 2008, p. 48)
Headline: Banishment. Another form of bliss
“The news comes first as a rumor. Days later, media sources confirm it. Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh has arrived in another country. Will this one be final, or will he move on? Anxious friends of Bhagwan around the world hold their breath, awaiting news. Then it comes. He’s off again. And once more the waiting begins. Now he’s back in India. But for how long this time?
As Bhagwan is buffeted around various nations, remaining calm and centered, we have a unique opportunity to observe the oldest, most severe, and perhaps most unfair punishment a human being can experience – banishment.
Banishment doesn’t involve a trial. Nor is there any judgement whether the accused is guilty or innocent. The criteria to banish someone is arbitrary – sometimes even whimsical. It’s simply the voice of the ones in power saying, “Get out!”
When judged guilty of a crime and sent to prison, an individual at least continues to live within the framework of his society, which cares for him during his confinement. After paying his penalty, he returns to his normal life. But banishment means no coming back. In the New England colonies during the early years of America’s history, offenders often begged to be flogged, imprisoned, or fined rather than banished. It’s the ultimate rejection – total cut-off from every aspect of that society.
Many who have come to Bhagwan know banishment from two perspectives. First, there is the rejection by the society from which they have come. The simple, non-violent acts of wearing a mala, donning red clothes, and embracing the teachings of Bhagwan causes them to be rejected by family and friends.
Some have been denied rights of citizenship. Others have been hassled by government and public institutions. Banishment by the old society is often part of the process of sharing in Bhagwan’s vision.
Many sannyasins have experienced a second form of banishment – namely banishment from the organization which has grown up around Bhagwan. For those on the Ranch in Oregon, there was always the underlying fear of being ‘called in’ and told it was time ‘to leave’. Sannyasins were aware that breaking rules, being negative, and deviating from established directions made them prime candidates for banishment. Reasons were often obscure and appeared arbitrary. Similarly, those who had not yet been invited to become commune members felt themselves in a state of banished limbo – excluded from the society they had come from, but not yet accepted by the one they wanted to join.
The precedent of banishment is as old as man himself – going back to that turbulent scene in the Garden of Eden. Adam and Eve broke a capricious rule, and immediately the finger of authority pointed the way out. They had no chance to explain, no trial, and no choice of an alternative punishment.
But as they slipped into their fig leaves and left the Garden, the impact of the shock must have created a tremendous opportunity for the children of Eden to see themselves. The mind stops, unable to comprehend. Chaos, panic, and fear mingle throughout every sense of the body – trying to grasp onto something solid. But there’s nothing. Just aloneness.
Isn’t this, however, the ultimate shock – the opportunity Bhagwan has said to use to the fullest when it comes? The message in many of his last discourses in Oregon was to go into aloneness. Banishment is the extreme form of aloneness, and perhaps Bhagwan is showing by his travels that this need not be so fearsome. Over the past months he has travelled the world – stopping briefly in different countries until the authorities invoke banishment. Then it’s off again to the next country.
He’s not just being banished from one place. He’s being rejected everywhere – and having fun through it all. It’s like a koan – being able to travel everywhere, but unable to remain anywhere.
Surely Bhagwan is immensely enjoying his sequence of banishments. When he was in a series of American jails, the media were there with him, showing the world his beauty, grace, and laughter while confined in conditions designed to be degrading. While in detention in Greece he was asked what effect this was having upon him. He replied, “I am at ease anywhere. Meditation makes one so centered that nothing matter.” Banishment must be simply just another form of bliss for Bhagwan.” (Sw Deva Nartan. In: Rajneesh. The Newspaper, 13.08.1986)
6.1 Returning to India and the Himalayas
From introduction by Sw Satyam Anando
“Along with some personal attendants, Bhagwan left America on November 14 and travelled by a rented Jetstar 731 back to New Delhi, India where He arrived shortly before 7 a.m. local time on November 17.
New Delhi’s international airport was jammed with about 3,000 people anxious to get a glimpse of the master who had been away from His homeland for four and a half year. Sannyasins with their entire families, and many who had never taken sannyas, had been camping out for two nights, waiting.
Step-by-step, a path was made through the throng, and Bhagwan was whisked away to the Hyatt Regency Hotel. While exhausted from His American ordeal, Bhagwan consented to meet with the press. “Good morning, India!” were His first words. He was happy to be back in the lands of the Buddhas.” (Sw Satyam Anando. Introduction to: Light on the Path. Talks in the Himalayas. 1988)
Aveling in Brill Encyclopedia of Hinduism:
“After returning immediately to India, where there were likely to be further investigations into the previous financial affairs of the ashram, he moved to Nepal for a short period and then, in January 1986, began his “world tour.” When he returned to India in July 1986, he had been deported from or denied entry to some 21 countries (Appleton 1987).” (Aveling 2012)
Heading: Hasya says ‘new commune is Poona’
“Bhagwan is very well. He is taking two walks a day and still sitting by the river…
Hasya also passed along the message that the ‘new commune’ is in Poona. People are invited to go there and they will be welcomed by Swami Jantibai. Everyone will need to arrange their own visas. Any activity which is not legal will not be welcome, she added.
Jantibai expects that all the legal matters pending in India will be cleared up by the first of the year and he suggests that people wait until then to come. Those who want to come right away will be welcomed, however, as people there are looking forward to the new energy. People who go to Poona should be prepared to provide for themselves; the Poona commune is independent as are all other communes. There is no relationship between Rajneesh Neo-Sannyas International Commune and the Shree Rajneesh Ashram in Poona with regard to supporting members.” (The Rajneesh Times, 1985:15. 29.11.1985)
“Osho always traveled with his English companion and care-taker Vivek/Nirvano and one of his secretaries – in this case Neelam, whom he had just made his secretary for India. Whenever possible, he also traveled with Mukti his cook, his English laundress Chetana/Shunyo and his English doctor Devaraj/Amrito, as well as his Australian transcriber, Maneesha, who took care of the recording and editing of the talks he continued to give whereever he went. There were always other people present, some of whom played important roles in trying to establish a permanent home for him, as well as several friends and helpers who popped up and disappeared as Osho moved around, and who would usually be given some king of a function while they were with him.” (Savita 2014, p. 257)
Heading: Bhagwan gets wild welcome
“The jet bearing Rajneesh and a close group of disciples flew into New Delhi from the Persian Gulf nation of Bahrain, where the air craft had refueled after a flight from Larnaca, Cyprus.
Rajneesh arrived on the eastern Mediterranean island on Friday from the United States and had been expected to continue on to New Delhi, but decided to stay for the night in a five-star hotel.
The unscheduled delay prompted speculation in New Delhi, that the guru was trying to sort out claims by the Indian government against the Rajneesh Foundation for more than $800.000 in unpaid taxes.
He was not liable for arrest upon arrival in India and it was not known how the legal problems would affect his stay.
Rajneesh’s ultimate destination in India was not immediately known.
Officials at the New Delhi ashram said he would likely be going to rest in the Himalayan foothills near the town of Manali, 250 miles north of New Delhi in Himachal Pradesh state.
There was also a chance, they said, that he would decide to return to the sect headquarters in Poona, southeast of Bombay, where he lived before moving to the United States in 1981.” (The Bulletin. Bend OR. 17.11.1985. UPI New Delhi)
Heading: Do not follow Bhagwan, says Dhyan John.
Press conference at Hotel Rajneesh, Rajneeshpuram, 15.11.1985
“India has a ten thousand year old tradition of respecting wise people. America has a three hundred year old tradition of respecting idiots…
He will start to give daily discourses from seclusion, and we’ll soon be able to hear what Bhagwan thinks about what happened in the U.S.A…
I’m sad that He’s gone, but He always said He wanted to end up in the Himalayas. I understand He started His movement on November 15, 15 years ago; and He will arrive in the Himalayas on the 15th – 15 years later to the day. And I’m happy for that.” (The Rajneesh Times, 1985:14. 22.11.1985)
Roshani Shay in her timeline for late 1985
“Nov 17: Bhagwan arrives in New Delhi, India at 2:10 am (via Allentown, PA; Shannon, Ireland; a one night stay in Larnaca, Cyprus followed by Bahrain refueling) to hundreds of followers (200-600) throwing flower petals; he is said to be headed to a place near Manali named Kulu, 250 miles north of New Delhi in Himachal Pradesh state in the Himalayan foothills; he denounces America, saying “It is just a wretched country,” and a “hypocrisy” and says of India, “This is my country;” in the news conference says he was mistreated in jail and will not have another commune, after which he leaves for Manali; the international headquarters of the movement will be in Poona, India, but all communes will be independent…
Nov 18: Bhagwan and 20 or so sannyasins book the 24 room, well-guarded Span Resorts Complex motel near Manali for 10 weeks; The Press Trust of India quotes a source as saying that some sannyasins had met with the chief minister of Himachal Pradesh state earlier this year proposing to buy land in Manali…
Nov 20: Indian newspapers reportedly say Bhagwan will not be allowed to buy land in Himachal Pradesh and that the Rajneesh Foundation owes $800,000 to $3 million in taxes from the pre-1981 period…
Dec 24: Judge Edward Leavy orders Niren to “reveal to a federal grand jury who told him a secret indictment [of Oct 23; 51 pages] had been issued against the Indian guru,” and that the information is not protected by the attorney-client privilege; the grand jury will meet again on Jan. 15…
Dec 25: It is reported that all 10 non-Indian aides to Bhagwan (including a Canadian cook, British maid, Italian carpenter, German engineer) have been ordered out of India and that 9 had left as of Dec. 16 when their three-week visas expired and were not extended; Ma Prem Hasya, Bhagwan’s secretary, is refused a visa extension as of today and said to be forced from India tomorrow (to Kathmandu, Nepal?)…
Dec 27 It is reported that Bhagwan plans to settle within the next 2 weeks on an island (one of three near Fiji) in the South Pacific, which would be privately owned, not under the control of any government and that he would “make his ‘last effort’ to build a commune,” there or in one of two countries in South America.” (Shay 1990)
Timeline in ‘Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay’ (1988):
“The World Tour – A Study In Human Rights
Bhagwan’s new secretary, his companion, his doctor and other disciples accompanying him were ordered out of India, their visas cancelled. No reason was given by the Indian government for this unprecedented action except, “You are not wanted here.” Bhagwan left to join them in Kathmandu, Nepal, where he resumed his daily discourses.
Bhagwan went to Greece on a 30-day tourist visa, where he lived in the villa of a Greek film producer and started to speak twice daily. Disciples flocked to hear him. The Greek Orthodox clergy threatened the Greek government that blood would flow unless Bhagwan was thrown out of the country.
March 5, 1986
Police broke into the villa and arrested Bhagwan without warrant, shunting him off to Athens where only a twenty-five thousand dollar bribe could move the authorities not to put him on the boat to India.
March 6, 1986
He left in a private jet for Switzerland where his 7-day visa was cancelled by armed policemen upon arrival. He was declared ‘persona non grata’ because of “immigration offences in the United States” and asked to leave.
He flew to Sweden where he was met the same way – surrounded by rifled policemen. He was told he was “a danger to national security,” and ordered to leave immediately.
He flew on to England. His pilots were now legally bound to rest for eight hours. Bhagwan wanted to wait in the First Class Transit Lounge, but he was not allowed; nor was he allowed to stay in a hotel overnight. Instead, he and his companions were locked up in a small, dirty cell crowded with refugees.
March 7, 1986
Bhagwan and his group flew to Ireland, where they were given tourist visas. They went to a hotel near Limerick. The next morning police arrived and ordered them to leave immediately.
However, this was not possible because Canada had by then refused Bhagwan’s plane permission to land at Gander for refuelling on the intended flight to Antigua in the Caribbean.
This extraordinary denial of the right to refuel was made in spite of a bond from Lloyds of London guaranteeing that Bhagwan would not step outside the plane.
On the condition that there was no publicity that might embarrass the authorities, he was allowed to remain in Ireland until other arrangements could be made.
During the wait, Antigua withdrew permission for Bhagwan to go there. Holland, when asked, also refused Bhagwan.
Germany had already passed a ‘preventive decree’ not to allow Bhagwan to enter their country. In Italy, his tourist visa application remained stalled – and in fact has still not been granted 15 months later.
March 19, 1986
At the last moment, Uruguay turned up with an invitation, and so, on March 19th, Bhagwan, his devotees and fellow travelers flew to Montevideo via Dakar, Senegal.
Uruguay even opened up the possibility of permanent residence. However, in Uruguay it was discovered why he was being denied access to every country he tried to enter – telexes with “diplomatic secret information” (all from NATO government sources) mentioning INTERPOL rumors of “smuggling charges, drug dealing and prostitution” concerning Bhagwan’s circle had invariably preceded them to their prospective host countries.
The source of these stories was found to be the USA. Uruguay soon came under the same pressure.
May 14, 1986
The government decided to announce at a press conference that Bhagwan had been granted permanent residence in Uruguay.
That night Sanguinetti, the President of Uruguay, received a call from Washington, DC, saying that if Bhagwan stayed in Uruguay, current U.S. loans of six billion dollars would be called in, and no future loans given. Bhagwan was requested to leave Uruguay by June 18th. On the day after he left, Sanguinetti and Reagan announced from Washington a new U.S. loan to Uruguay of one hundred and fifty million dollars.
June 19, 1986
Jamaica granted Bhagwan a 10-day visa. Moments after he landed there, a U.S. navy jet landed next to Bhagwan’s private jet, and two civilians descended. The next morning, the visas of Bhagwan and his group were cancelled, “for reasons of national security.”
Bhagwan flew on to Lisbon via Madrid, and remained “undisclosed” for some time. A few weeks later policemen were placed around the villa where he was resting. Bhagwan decided to return back to India the next day, July 28.
In all, twenty-one countries had either deported him or denied him entry.
July 29, 1986
Bhagwan arrived in Bombay, India, where he settled for six months as a personal guest of an Indian friend. In the privacy of his host’s home, he resumed his daily discourses.”
As mentioned this Timeline is from: ‘Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988): ‘Some Biographical Facts and Events from the Life of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh’ on pp. 419-24 with details of US political moves during his World Tour. Same chronology is printed in the appendix to the compilation ‘Jesus Crucified Again. This Time in Ronald Reagan’s America’ (1988).
One more Timeline is compiled by Osho’s legal secretary Anando
Nov 17, 1985. Arrives in Delhi and next day flies to Span Resort in Kulu Manali at the Beas River.
Jan 3, 1986. Osho flies to Kathmandu. Speaks twice a day.
Feb 15, 1986. Osho leaves Kathmandu and flies to Crete (via Bangkok), where he is given a 30-day tourist visa.
Mar 5, 1986. Osho is deported from Greece.
Mar 6, 1986. Held overnight in detention at Heathrow airport.
Mar 7, 1986. Arrive in Shannon, Ireland.
Mar 18, 1986. Has to leave Ireland. Travels to Uruguay (overnight in Dakar).
June 18, 1986. Has to leave Uruguay.
Jun 19, 1986. ‘Transit’ in Jamaica, before moving on again.
Jun 21, 1986. Arrives Lisbon, Portugal.
Jul 30, 1986. Osho arrives in Mumbai, staying at Sumila in Juhu.
Jul 31, 1986. Osho starts giving discourses and press interviews.
Jan 4, 1987. Osho returns to Pune. (Ma Deva Anando. Timeline. Personal information)
In Maneesha’s book on World Tour all stops are listed:
1. Portland, Oregon. 2. South Dacota. 3. Allentown, Pennsylvania. 4. Shannon. 5. Cyprus. 6. Delhi. 7. Kulu-Manali. 8. Delhi. 9. Kathmandu. 10. Bangkok. 11. Dubai. 12. Cyprus. 13. Crete. 14. Nice. 15. Geneva. 16. Stockholm. 17. London. 18. Shannon. 19. Madrid. 20. Senegal. 21. Recife. 22. Rio de Janeiro. 23. Montevideo. 24. Brasilia. 25. Boa Vista. 26. Jamaica. 27. Gander. 28. Madrid. 29. Lisbon. 30. Cyprus. 31. Bahrain. 32. Bombay. (Forman 2002, p. xii)
6.2 Talks in Kulu Manali, Himachal Pradesh
All discourse series from Kulu Manali are presented in Volume III / Bibliography / World Tour, where bibliographic data as well as excerpts from introductions and opening discourses are to be found.
In Kulu Manali
“For thousands of years – five thousand years ago, back at the time of the famous Mahabharat War – Kulu-Manali has been known as “the valley of the gods” because of the many Hindu tribes that lived there, each having its own particular god. Still, today, several tribes exists, and the valley is felt to have a certain magical, mystical energy. Those who want to renounce the world have traditionally made for the Himalayas, and Kulu-Manali is a favored place – with its ashrams for those who would like to live together with others of like mind, and the mountains for the ascetics who want to find their own cave and go it alone.
It was here, in 1970, during the last two days of a meditation camp, that Bhagwan finally capitulated to friends’ requests and began giving sannyas to those who had been begging him to do so for years. During this period he also gave discourses on Krishna which were spectacular, according to those Indian sannyasins who attended…
As the car turned right up the main road towards Manali, glancing back down the valley to the left Chetana could make out what she presumed to be the town of Kulu. It was sizable, with a population of some 20,000, but the shops and houses that bordered the road for about two hundred meters looked somewhat run down.
They were now heading for the property, apparently fifteen kilometers up the valley, which Laxmi had given Hasya to understand had been bought. She’d described it as a beautiful hotel complex which initially had room for two hundred people, and alongside which was a river. Laxmi had suggested that the island in the middle of the river would be a beautiful place for a Rajneesh Mandir – a meeting hall such as had been at Rajneeshpuram or in the ashram in Poona before that. She’d also said there was the possibility of acquiring hundreds of acres of the land that surrounded the Span Resort as it was known.” (Forman 2002, p. 35)
(Note: Beas in the land of Kulu was Buddhist in the time of Yuan Chwang when he visited the area 629-645 and before the final demolition of Buddhist places in India by the Muslims in 1197. It’s a spot ‘where the snow has not melted since the Buddha’s day.’)
“North of Simla, or via Mandi, through the 25-mile gorge of he Beas river, is the wide and long Kulu Valley filled with apricot, cherry, plum, peach, apple and pear trees, blooming in March and April. There is a hot spring, with bathing facilities supervised by Tibetans. Autumn monsoons fill the valley with fruits, followed by the Dussehra (or Dasahra) religious festival in which all the idols from the valley villages are brought to Kulu (once called Sultanpur).” (Murray 1980, p. 136)
Mary Catherine writes
“After the press conference [in New Delhi], Bhagwan was flown in a private plane to the Kulu Valley, 260 miles north of New Delhi, and was then taken on a nine-hour car journey to the hotel.
Word reached Rajneeshpuram Wednesday night that Bhagwan is “very happy” in the secluded hotel resort. Relaying a message from Ma Prem Hasya, Bhagwan’s personal secretary, who is currently in India, Ma Prem Arup told a community meeting: “He spends most of His time sitting outside on a terrace in the cool weather. Sometimes He walks down to the nearby river and stands watching the water.”
Swami Prem Niren, also present at the meeting, said that the hotel was located in “a wonderful place” and that the air and water are very pure. Newspaper reports add that the entire 24-room hotel has been booked for Bhagwan and 20 disciples for ten weeks. They said that the Span Resorts Complex – the name of the hotel – is surrounded by a barbed-wire topped wall, and that police are maintaining “tight security.”
Most western reporters covering the story seem to be operating from New Delhi, relying on local Indian newspaper reports from the Simla area to tell them what is going on. Rajneesh disciples and other lovers of Bhagwan have been told not to follow Him to His new residence. “This is very important,” Swami Dhyan John told a community meeting recently. “He wants to be left alone. Please respect His wishes.” (Rajneesh Times (India), 1985:1)
(Note: The Span Executive Holiday Resort was owned by the family of senior Congress minister Kamal Nath, and located 8-10 km south of Manali village).
Press arriving to Kulu Manali
“The day after Bhagwan arrived, the Indian and international press – ‘India Today’, ‘Der Spiegel’, ‘Quick’ magazine, ‘Swiss Weekly’ magazine, the ‘Washington Post’, the London ‘Sunday Times’, among others – started arriving and asking for interviews with Bhagwan. So for the next few weeks, morning and/or afternoon, depending on the number of press present at one time, Bhagwan gave discourses sitting on the divan in the small lounge. These interviews were later compiled to form the books ‘India: Coming Back Home’ and ‘The Last Testament’.
If the weather was fine, he sat outside on the front porch, with sannyasins and reporters forming a semi-circle around him on the leaf-strewn lawn, the river quietly tinkling behind them, the Himalayas framing the whole scene.” (Forman 2002, p. 45)
“Bhagwan returns, he must go to court in Portland, so we are all on the runway, waving him goodbye. The sentence is deportation so they fly him to Cuba, where he can’t stay because the US pressures the Cuban government. Marlon Brando offers him an island, a wealthy Greek lends him a Greek island, but the police hassle him off, and it seems there is nowhere on the planet that is safe anymore, for this man of truth. The highest mountains in the world will shield him, our Beloved Master goes to the Himalayas.” (Wills 2009, p. 176)
Shunyo reading to Osho in Kulu Manali
“Osho was often speaking to the press twice a day and we sat outside listening to Him with the background sound of the rushing river and the thin pale sunlight on our faces…
At night I would read to Osho. I read the Bible to Him, or rather The X-rated Bible, by Ben Edward Akerley. It was a newly published book that consisted of three hundred pages, untampered with, straight out of the Bible. These pages are pure pornography and it is one of the biggest jokes to me that probably even the Pope does not read the Bible, otherwise he would freak out.” (Shunyo 1991, pp. 88,90)
Maneesha on discourses and interviews
“Soon after my arrival, a reporter turned up. Neelam asked Vadan to look after the press, but said when the reporter had worked out what questions he wanted to ask, he should give them to me, and I would ask them on his behalf while he listened. We’d some days of snow, and so for the remainder of Bhagwans’s time in Manali, press interviews and discourses were conducted in Bhagwan’s living room. His specially designed chair had somehow been lost in transit from America, so he talked to us from the divan, while we sat at his feet. Once we were settled on the floor, Bhagwan would walk in from his bedroom, namastéing us before sitting down…
The room could only comfortably accommodate eight of us at the most. I was in the enviable position now of attending all the occasions on which Bhagwan spoke, because it was my job to ask the questions, the others came according to their turn on a rotation system.” (Forman 2002, p. 75)
Morning discourses in Kulu Manali
“Once settled, Osho soon started morning discourses, and he would give them every day, as early as 8 am, on what, in late November, was already an icy-cold porch outside his little cottage. Everyone would sit on the steps around him, huddled together, packed into whatever warm clothes we had. It was seriously cold up there in the mountains, and as a teenager, I found that time for discourse far too early for my body clock… We had rented all the cabins in the compound and had set up temporary home there, essentially taking the place over.” (Priya. In: Savita 2014, p. 187)
Questions and discourses
“Neelam came to me a day or so after this with the message that Bhagwan would not be talking to the press any more but wanted us to formulate questions which he would answer in discourse. They were to be “deep, disciples’ questions” he’d said.
That night Anasha and I sat around the heater in Iti and Vadan’s room while the four of us wracked our brains for some suitable questions. What was a “deep” question? we asked ourselves and could we supply enough of whatever they were to engage Bhagwan’s interest for over an hour twice a day, as was the plan? The next morning we submitted a dozen or so questions, and that evening Bhagwan began to answer them. These discourses later came part of two books, titled ‘Light on the Path’ and ‘The Sword and the Lotus’…
It seemed to me that sannyasins would be thrilled to hear what Bhagwan was saying, and that it would not be too difficult to send out at least one discourse, or perhaps a series of quotes from recent discourses, to centers around the world. I was anxious too that if sannyasins were out of communication with Bhagwan, they would drift away, and by the time Bhagwan was in position to invite people to come and see him, there could well be no one left! I asked Bhagwan if it would be a good idea to make a discourse available for his sannyasins.
The reply, which Neelam delivered to me, was simply, “No need.”
It gave me food for thought. Any leader of a group is dependent on his supporters, if he is a leader, to stay in business. In Bhagwan’s position they could not afford to be cut off from their followers. Certainly sannyasins would want to hear from Bhagwan – to know he was well, to be assured that he would soon be available again, to take part in plans for a new future. Yet Bhagwan had said, “No need.” I didn’t understand until some time later that perhaps he was deliberately allowing his people to be “in the gap,” to experience how they managed without him, how they survived the abrupt termination of their life at Rajneeshpuram, to sort out their feelings.” (Forman 2002, pp. 78,84)
From introduction by Sw Satyam Anando
“In the beginning of December, Bhagwan started giving discourses – at first outside and later, when the weather turned cold, indoors. In the background of those recorded discourses, one can hear the sound of the river running.
‘Don’t search for the home, because there is none’, Bhagwan said. ‘Search for yourself, because there is one! And finding that one, suddenly, miraculously the whole existence becomes your home’.
Given the context, the discourses have a real existential ring. Bhagwan talks about the collapse of the old commune and of repeated failure as being the way to success. He talks of old-style masters like Buddha. afraid of love and losing their respectability. ‘I am not afraid of anything – particularly of love’.” (Sw Satyam Anando. Introduction to: Light on the Path. Talks in the Himalayas. 1988)
Arun writes from Manali
“In the November of 1985 when Osho returned back to India after Rajneeshpuram, I was staying with him in Manali for a few weeks at the Span Resort. I had seen Osho’s fleet of Rolls Royces and his luxury in Rajneeshpuram. In Manali he was living in a small cottage of fourteen by eleven ft. The electricity supply used to be cut as the voltage was very low and the geysers and heaters were not working properly. For his bath the hot water used to be brought in a bucket from the kitchen. He came to the resort from the airport in an old and dirty ambassador taxi. There were no vehicles available for his local transportation. Just few days ago, he was an emperor in Rajneeshpuram and now here he was with the most minimal amenities…
Osho used to go for morning and afternoon walk on the bank of the Vyas River and used to sit silently on a wooden bench facing the river. Usually he used to sit alone in silence but some mornings he used to call his disciples for necessary information and instruction. On the very first day I arrived in Manali, Bhagwan called me for a personal darshan on the bank of Vyas River.
Later I was summoned many times to this darshan. It was one of the best times of my life. To sit at the feet of my master on the bank of a beautiful mountain river surrounded by dense Himalayan forest. On clear days we could even see the snow capped mountains…
Osho used to sit on a wooden bench and I used to sit at his feet on the sand of the river bank. For most of us Rajneeshpuram was our dream city, our home, and we had all the pain of losing it. We were all very sad after the destruction of Rajneeshpuram and were all missing it tremendously. Amidst all this the only person who was not sad and was calm and composed was Osho. There was no sign of any gloom on his face, he didn’t miss anything. He was enjoying his long cherished dream to live in the solitude of the Himalayas.
“I love the Himalayas…
Switzerland is beautiful but nothing compared to the Himalayas. It is convenient to be in Switzerland with all its modern facilities. It is very inconvenient in the Himalayas. It is still without any technology at all – no roads, no electricity, no airplanes, no railroads, nothing at all. But then comes the innocence. One is transported to another time, to another being, to another space.
The Himalayas have attracted for centuries and centuries the mystical people. There is some quality of mystic atmosphere in the Himalayas. No other mountains in the world have that quality – the height, the eternal snow that has never melted, the silence that has never been broken, paths that have never been trodden. There are some similarities between the Himalayan peaks and the inner consciousness.” – Osho
One day during the darshan I could no more contain myself and asked Osho, Bhagwan, don’t you miss anything? Your comfortable Lao Tzu House, your luxurious gardens and bathroom and the fleet of your Rolls Royces? Don’t you miss our dream city Rajneeshpuram. Here you live in a small room which does not even have an AC.”…
I was surprised by his answer and then Bhagwan gave me one of the greatest teachings of my life. He said, “I fully enjoyed Rajneeshpuram while I was there but I don’t miss it now because I was never attached with it. You miss things because you thought it was yours, you are miserable now because you were attached with them. I lived in Rajneeshpuram in totality so I don’t miss it. It is a general habit of people that they don’t enjoy things when it is available and they miss it immensely when it is lost. I enjoy my life and everything moment to moment. It is not the lost things that give you misery but the attachment that you have for it.” (Arun 2017, pp. 276-80)
Ma Dharm Jyoti on meeting Osho
“My next meeting with Osho happens in Manali (India) in December 1985 when he came back from America. He is staying in a beautiful hotel surrounded by a range of mountains covered with snow and at the back side of the hotel there is a river flowing in all its glory making the musical sound of running water. Manali is known as the valley of gods. The whole atmosphere is nourishing. Osho looks quite healthy and happy. At 10:30am, when I enter His room with a few more friends He is sitting on a sofa and we all sit near Him on the floor which is covered with a carpet. All these years of being away from Him physically just vanish in a moment. He tells us His story of being in American jails which is hitting me in my navel centre. I can feel all the pain He has gone through and silently tears are flowing down from my eyes.” (Jyoti 1994, p. 123)
Laheru recalls from Kulu Manali
“On December 27, 1985, I reached Manali to meet Osho. When I entered the compound of Span Resort, Osho was standing outside his cottage, in the verandah, giving darshan to countless people standing in queue. My stay was arranged in Span Resort itself, in a room near Laxmi’s room. I had stayed there for four days. Every evening I got the opportunity to sit near Osho. At that time, some of Osho’s old friends were searching for a new place suitable for his work. They were coming to Osho to discuss about different places they had seen. Osho listened to all of them with attention and then said, “Let Jayesh come.” Because, at that time, Jayesh and some western sannyasin friends were searching for a place outside India too…
In 1986-87, as if the troubles were not over yet, C.B.I. enquiry came in Pune Osho Ashram. One government officer came to my house and enquired about everything for one hour. Thereafter, the eleven trustees of the Rajneesh Foundation were produced in Tees Hazari Court of Delhi. We were released on bail there. For some time, we all trustees together had to attend the court whenever there was a date.” (Laheru 2012, p. 152)
Neelam on Osho talking “off the wall”
“In Manali, in one of the press interviews, I was talking about the possibilities, the creative and absolutely new possibilities of doors that science can open. Neelam was there, and she reported to Nirvano in Kathmandu that I was talking “off the wall.” And I can understand that anybody will think what I was saying was “off the Wall.” It will appear like that.” The Golden Future (1988). Session 36, p. 349.
“Early in 1986, after Osho had left the States, there were just a few of us with him in Manali, Himachal Pradesh, and there was talk about taking him abroad. Except we didn’t know whether there would be any chance of Osho getting a visa to leave, nor did we have any idea where we would go if the opportunity to take a trip did come up. Most of us, in one way or another, had been having a lot of trouble with visas at that time, so I suggested that we buy an ocean liner and that we all simply travel around the sea in a big ship, where no one could bother us about passports and visas.
Osho’s response was: “Mukta, I can’t walk straight on land. Do you expect me to walk straight on a ship?”
But later on, in Uruguay, during his world tour, after he had his visas denied and been sent away from a multitude of countries, he himself actually suggested that we all live on an ocean liner.
Maybe he figured that walking a crooked line would be preferable to all the running he was having to do being chased out of every country…” (Mukta. In: Savita 2014, p. 190)
“But the Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh said land could not be purchased by the newcomers for two reasons. First, only residents of the state could own land there. Second, Bhagwan would be attracting many foreigners and all those travelling by land would have to cross the strife-torn Punjab.
Three weeks after their arrivals, the visas of Bhagwan’s Western disciples were summarily cancelled and they were forced to leave the country. While the directive came from New Delhi, many suspected that it stemmed from Washington D.C.” (Sw Satyam Anando. Introduction to: Light on the Path. Talks in the Himalayas. 1988)
Later on in April 1987 Bhagwan talks on a case against him for publishing ‘From Sex to Superconsciousness’ (1970)
“Just the other day I was informed that there was another case… For thirty years I have been in so many cases. In not a single case have they been able to prove anything against me, because whatever I have said was in their scriptures.
If they want to put a case against anybody, it should be against those scriptures, their publishers. Those scriptures should be burnt.
In Simla the other day, the high court judge – he must be an intelligent man, because he said to the person who was saying that the whole of Himachal Pradesh, all the Hindus living in that state, are feeling hurt by my statements – the judge said, “I am also living in Himachal Pradesh, and I am also a Hindu, and I don’t feel at all hurt by his statements. So don’t talk about all the Hindus of Himachal Pradesh. You simply talk about you. You are not representative of the whole state. I also live her, I am not hurt. And the book was published twenty years ago. Where have you been for twenty years?”
It has gone into many editions in almost all the languages of the world.
And the judge looked at the book. There was the seal of the public library of Simla, so he asked the man, “Are you a member of the public library of Simla?” And he replied, “No.” Then the judge said, “Then how could you get this book? Have you stolen it? This is not your book.” And the man was silent. He must have stolen that book!” Zarathustra. The Laughing Prophet (1987). Chapter 23, p. 545.
Kulu library affair
“The sixth point was that the accused, Bhagwan, had published a book called From Sex to Superconsciousness… stating that it had touched and revolted against the teachings and preachings of the Hindu scriptures… If the reader misunderstood the writings of a certain book, the fault did not lie within the book… In addition, it wasn’t Bhagwan who had put the book in Kulu library. If anything, the petitioner should have a grievance against the government for placing the book in its own library; the fact that the governor made it available ruled out the possibility of its being obscene.” (Forman 2002, p. 95).
Lawsuit against Osho
“We heard the rumor, later confirmed, that someone who lived in Kulu had taken out or was planning to file a lawsuit against Bhagwan. He’d obtained a copy of the book, ‘From Sex to Superconsciousness’, from the Kulu library some ten years earlier, and had suddenly decided that the book was offensive, that it “hurt his religious feelings.” According to the Indian Constitution, people are not to hurt the religious feelings of others, but it is hard to prove your feelings have been hurt and so it is extremely unusual for anyone to start a case based on this premise. But Naval Thakut of Kulu was mortified by something he’d understood Bhagwan to have expressed through his particular book – which he had read ten years before – and so a case was started…
In addition, it wasn’t Bhagwan who had put the book in Kulu library. If anything, the petitioner should have a grievance against the government for placing the book in its own library; the fact that the government had made it available ruled out the possibility of its being obscene. The complaint, the application concluded, was simply an attempt to malign Bhagwan’s name; otherwise, why were neither the publisher nor printer prosecuted? An ironic twist to the story: on April 6th, 1987, when the case was first heard, Mr. Thakut admitted he had stolen Exhibit A – the book about which he was raising such a hue and cry – from the Kulu library! As it transpired the case would not be concluded until 1989, when it was resolved in Bhagwan’s favor, his lawyers winning every point.” (Forman 2002, p. 94)
“Now the American government is pressuring the Indian government that I should not be allowed to make a commune here. The government has started doing harm – I am receiving summons from different parts of the country, which are politically motivated. The only reason for those summons is that somebody’s religious feelings are hurt. So I have to be present in the court – in the south, in Bengal, in Kashmir – just to harass me, from one part to another part of the country, and from one court to another court… In the newspapers the news has come that a summons is on the way from a court in Kulu Manali because I have said that in Hindu scriptures you cannot find truth. And this has hurt somebody’s feelings so much that now I have to be present in court.” The Rajneesh Upanishad (1986). Chapter 17 & 38, pp. 369,838. 04. & 26.09.1986.
“On December 10, the police arrived at the resort, asked for all the foreigners and stamped their passports, ‘Ordered to leave India immediately.’ According to Shunyo, the orders were coming directly from the Minister for Internal Security Arun Nehru, who was refusing to meet Osho’s top sannyasins who wanted to plead their case with him. She suggests that it was none other than Laxmi (bitterly opposed to the Westerners) who had influenced Nehru to act against the foreigners by saying that foreigners were not needed to look after Osho. Shunyo says that the denial of visa/visa extensions for his foreign disciples was the main reason for leaving Kulu Manali – and not Osho’s deteriorating health or concern over the lack of medical facilities for Osho in Kulu Manali – as stated in an officially-approved version of the events.” (Vaidya 2017, p. 71)
“Bhagwan left America in mid-November, planning to settle in the Himalayas. The Indian government apparently had other ideas. Within three days the Western disciples who had accompanied him – his doctor, nurse and domestic staff, all of whom had looked after him for eight to fifteen years – were refused extensions of their three-week visas and ordered out of the country. At the same time an Italian TV crew was refused visas to come and interview him for a documentary film. The Indian government had quickly and effectively isolated him. It seemed that US Attorney-General Ed Meese’s wish (he had been quoted as saying “I want that man right back in India, never to be seen or heard of again”) was India’s command. On Christmas Eve the three-month visa of Bhagwan’s personal secretary was peremptorily cancelled, and she was ordered to leave the country by sunset. A few days later Bhagwan flew north to join the deportees in Kathmandu, Nepal.” (Appleton 1987, p. 64)
Leaving for Nepal
“After three weeks in Kulu-Manali in northern India, all non-Indian members of staff – the foreigners who had been looking after Osho – were forced to leave and fly out of the country to Nepal because they’d been denied visa extensions in India. So there were just a few Indians left and I was chosen to take care of him.
One night, after three or four weeks without his companion Vivek, Osho decided – just like that – that he wanted to go to Nepal. And he didn’t just want to go to Nepal sometime or in a week or so, he wanted to go to Nepal… “Tomorrow!”…
So we ended up with an ordinary local Ambassador taxicap, the kind of 20-year-old jalopy with windows that don’t shut, and whose doors only open from outside…
Later we learned that a few hours after we left the Span Resort so hurriedly at Osho’s insistence, the police turned up. They had come to detain him on some pretext or another and to confiscate his passport.” (Neelam. In: Savita 2014, p. 191)
Osho talking restrictions met in Kulu Manali
“In India I told sannyasins not to come to Kulu Manali because we wanted to purchase land and houses in Kulu Manali, and if thousands of sannyasins had started coming, immediately the orthodox, the old-fashioned people, would have started freaking out. And the politicians are always looking for an opportunity.
Those few days that I was not with my sannyasins, not talking to them, not looking in their eyes, not looking at their faces, not listening to their laughter, I felt undernourished. So it is not a responsibility, it is absolute blissfulness for me to be with my people.
And here, I can call them because here we are not going to have a commune, so we don’t care what the government thinks, what the bishop thinks. And they are already thinking stupid things. Just the other day I saw that the bishop of Crete called a meeting of other priests, because he has been informed that two thousand sannyasins are going to be here, and he is afraid for the traditional values. He is afraid that my sannyasins will not fit with their society, with their church.
Certainly I have the most misfit people around the whole world, who don’t fit anywhere – but they fit with me absolutely. And I don’t see the point. I have such nice people, such beautiful people, such loving people; you cannot find anywhere else such people together. But the society is afraid. I had to leave Kulu Manali only for that reason, because the government was ready to give me land, to allow me to purchase houses there, but with conditions. I don’t accept any conditions.
The conditions were that no foreign sannyasins would be allowed, that no foreign news media would be allowed. So they were going to cut me off from my own people around the world. And this whole world belongs to me; there is nobody who is a foreigner.
I refused. I moved out of Kulu Manali immediately, the moment I heard their conditions. I said, “I would rather live in an airplane and move around the earth, meeting my people – so they need not worry about a commune and visas, and you preventing them and governments preventing them. I can move around the world; that is easier.” And I am ready to do that.
If some government is not going to give me unconditionally a place where twenty to forty thousand sannyasins can gather at a time, then I am not going to stay anywhere. Then it means no country belongs to me. I am country-less, homeless. And I will remain a wanderer, moving around the world, meeting my people wherever they are. It is not a responsibility, it is an immense joy to me.” Socrates Poisoned again after 25 Centuries (1988). Chapter 4, p. 54. Crete, 21.02.1986 am.
FitzGerald on rumours how Osho left Kulu Manali
“Since his departure, Rajneesh had moved from India to Nepal and then to Crete, where, in February, he was staying with a Greek producer of X-rated films. According to the sannyasins, he had proved physically quite tough; indeed, on his first stop when he found that Laxmi had rented, not bought, the Himalayan hotel where he was staying, and had obtained only three-week visas for his non-Indian sannyasins, he took a bus to New Delhi and left Laxmi with the hotel bills.)” (FitzGerald 1986, II p. 120)
Shiva writes on Laxmi
“Some time before Rajneesh’s departure [from America], Laxmi had been taken back into the fold by her guru, and given the task of finding a place for Rajneesh to stay on his return to India. In the three years since she had been denounced as cunning and deceitful she had been very ill with cancer and had undergone a hysterectomy operation, but she had been summoned to the Fourth World Festival [in 1985], and was apparently forgiven. Several people who had seen her at the Festival remarked that she looked very ill, and close to death. Given important work to do for Rajneesh, however, she sprang back into action, and a few days later flew back to India to arrange his next port of call…
For his first month in India, Rajneesh lived with Laxmi in a luxury hotel. They left this hotel in the middle of the night, leaving behind an unpaid $20,000 bill.” (Milne 1986, p. 303)
From Kulu to Delhi and onwards to Kathmandu
“Bhagwan left Kulu, the place where Laxmi had arranged for him, suddenly and unexpectedly. It seems he did not like the Manager of the hotel, amongst other things. Scheduled to leave, according to John and Jayesh in two days time, he “disappeared” very early one morning, accompanied only by Neelam, his Household Secretary, and without informing anyone else in the entourage. Bhagwan took a rickety plane to Delhi. When his entourage caught up with him some 12 hours later Bhagwan explained he was “In a hurry” to get to Kathmandu!
On this flight, or the flight from Delhi to Kathmandu, Neelam described to Vedant Bharti, as reported in ‘Tao Connection’ the Boston-based newsletter, that she was sitting next to Bhagwan while he was dozing off. The stewardess came by to ask if they wanted to eat some lunch. Neelam put her finger to her mouth to indicate not to disturb him. After the stewardess went away, Bhagwan opened his eyes and asked: “Neelam, what was that?” Neelam replied that she thought he was sleeping and didn’t want to wake him for lunch. He said: “Why don’t we get some lunch? Just order one and we can share it.” So they got some food and Neelam was feeding him puris and vegetables.
When the plane landed, the stewardess came up to Neelam and asked if she could ask Bhagwan for an autograph. Neelam said “No”, but a few minutes later Bhagwan asked her what the stewardess had wanted and she told him. He asked for paper and a pen and gave an autograph to the stewardess. Word got around the other stewardesses and some of the passengers asked for his autograph as well. After a while, Neelam said: “Bhagwan, I have been with you for 15 years and you never gave me an autograph.” He looked at her and said: “You don’t need my autograph.” (Sannyas News, 02.05.1986)
Leaving Manali for Delhi and Kathmandu
“Conjoined with the physical hardships and political bullying of Westerners, some bogus court cases against Bhagwan were initiated and there were even rumours of imminent arrest.
On the afternoon of January 3, Neelam and three other disciples accompanied Bhagwan to the local airport half an hour away from the resort and took a regularly scheduled flight to New Delhi. Arriving in Kathmandu the next day, they went to stay at the Soaltee Oberoi.” (Sw Satyam Anando. Introduction to: Light on the Path. Talks in the Himalayas. 1988)
Leaving India for Nepal and the beginning of World Tour
“But they simply want to cut me off from humanity. That’s why I had to leave India – their conditions were clear. They wanted me to remain in India – naturally they cannot deny me; it is my birthland. “You can remain,” they said, “but no foreign disciples can be allowed to reach you.”
That was a way to cut me off from the world, from my people, and even from the news media, so nobody knows whether I am alive or dead. It was a strange strategy to make me almost dead, although I am alive, to cut me off from everybody.
I refused their conditions. I have never lived under any conditions, and particularly such ugly conditions. I left the country and went to Nepal – because that is the only country where I could go without a visa; otherwise the Indian government had informed all the embassies that no visa should be issued to me that I cannot leave India. But with Nepal, India has a treaty; no visa is needed.
But Nepal is a small and very poor country – the poorest – and under tremendous pressure from India… India can take it over any moment. It has no army worth the name. When it became absolutely certain from reliable sources that they would compel the Nepalese government either to arrest me or to send me back to India, I had to leave Nepal. It makes no difference to my being.
But it makes a lot of difference to my attitude about the society in which we are living. It is absolutely ugly, barbarous, uncultured, uncivilized. That’s why I said, “A lot – and nothing.” Socrates Poisoned again after 25 Centuries (1988). Epilogue: A Lot – And Nothing. Chapter 29, p. 402. Punta del Este, 15.04.1986 am.
“The king of Nepal was ready for me to have my residence and commune there, but the condition was that I should not speak against Hinduism. Nepal is a Hindu kingdom, the only Hindu kingdom in the world.
I refused. I said, “I never plan what to speak and what not to speak. I cannot promise. And if I see anything wrong, then it does not matter whether it is Hinduism or Christianity or Mohammedanism, I am going to speak against it.” Socrates Poisoned again after 25 Centuries (1988). Chapter 5, p. 59. Crete, 21.02.1986 pm.
No visas for his followers
“The previous year , when Bhagwan had been in Kulu-Manali – in its December 28th edition, the Indian paper, the ‘Telegraph’, had noted that, “The government has imposed a blanket ban on the entry of Bhagwan Rajneesh’s foreign followers into the country… Indian foreign missions had been instructed not to issue visas to Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh’s followers. Special instructions from the union home ministry had also been sent to all the foreign registration offices not to grant visa extension to any foreigner if he or she was identified as a follower of Bhagwan Rajneesh. Such a person would not get any visa, not even as a tourist…
In 1987 a list, which had been in the possession of the Indian government, was obtained with the names of 228 sannyasins, from Britain, Australia, Canada, Germany, Holland, Brazil, Ireland, Italy, Denmark, New Zealand, Argentina, the Philippines, Switzerland and the US. All the names of the above mentioned sannyasins – and these are just a few examples – were listed under “legal” name, sannyas name and nationality.” (Forman 2002, pp. 414,415)
6.3 Talks in Kathmandu, Nepal
All discourse series from Kathmandu are presented in Volume III / Bibliography / World Tour, where bibliographic data as well as excerpts from introductions and opening discourses are to be found.
Arun writes on Rajneesh’s understanding of Nepal in 1969
“Acharyashree told me Nepal had a great spiritual potential. Just as the entire terrain of Tibet vibrated with the teachings of Buddha, Nepal has the same potential to imbibe Acharyashree’s message. Padmasambhav single-handedly spread the teachings of Buddha in Tibet, Sanghamitra and Mahendra revived Buddhism in Sri Lanka, and in the same way, Nepal, too, has been waiting for a dedicated seeker who would establish Acharyashree’s (Osho’s) vision in the beautiful kingdom of the Himalayas.” (Arun 2017, p. 29)
Maneesha on arriving in Kathmandu
“Twenty minutes later, the car entered the main gateway of the Soaltee Oberoi Hotel. The grounds were spacious, with well-manicured lawns bordered by brightly colored flower beds. At one end of the grounds was a swimming pool, a collection of tables and chairs, and a pizza parlor, while off to one side was a tennis court. At the upper end of the grounds stood the porch to the hotel. Here the car now pulled up.
The press had followed Bhagwan from the airport, and were eager to talk to him. By 3:00 p.m. they were gathered in the sitting room of Bhagwan’s suite, along with a few sannyasins, in a semicircle on the floor. Bhagwan was seated on an elegant red-cushioned sofa, a Tibetan wall-hanging as backdrop, a dozen tape recorders at his feet and a microphone on the little table in front of him.” (Forman 2002, p. 103)
Basnet writes in his study on Osho’s arrival in Nepal
“Swami Ananda Arun says that Osho Rajneesh always held Nepal with high esteem. Rajneesh even said that Nepal one day would be swamped by his followers. According to Swami Arun, Rajneesh once told him that Nepal would serve him in the same way “Tibet has served to the cause of Buddhism”. Most importantly, Rajneesh repeatedly said that the Himalayas was the best place to die, the “virgin” Nepal Himalayas even better. While he could not realize his dream in his lifetime, the Guru visited Nepal following his “expulsion” from the USA in 1986 and actually attempted to set up his base here in Nepal.
The Nepali print media in the early 1986 focused on the issues related to the upcoming elections. Yet they gave a wide coverage to the arrival of Rajneesh. But sadly, leafing through the newspapers, one gets impression that the media by and large was too content to sensationalize the news. Barring one or two exceptions, sane and rational discussions on the topic were virtually non-existent.
One newspaper reported that the “chief” of the local sannyasis, Swami Ananda Arun, had flown to India with 500 signatures of the local sannyasis to invite the Guru into Nepal. And his arrival at the Tribhuvan International Airport was accompanied by laughter, crying, howling, yelling, dancing and all sorts of “strange behaviour.
Reports said that ministers, industrialists, businesspersons and high level bureaucrats were among the most enthusiastic visitors. Saptahik Bimarsha reported that even the then Prime Minister Lokendra Bahadur Chand and his senior-most minister Mr. Rudra Prasad Giri took appointment to visit the Guru, but they didn’t do for unknown reasons.
The same weekly said that Auditor General Nar Kant Adhikari, Secretary Murali Prasad Upadhyay, Dr. Mrigendra Raj Pandey & Dr. Rajbhai Shrestha were among the big heads visiting the “Guru of the rich”.
Newspaper reports greatly resented the Guru’s labelling himself a “Second Buddha”. Similarly, his idea on sex played up out of proportions. Newspapers charged the Guru with tampering with Hinduism and Buddhism. His diamond watch, Rolls Royces, pearls woven cap and so on featured prominently in the print media. According to Bimarsha, on 15 January 1986 alone, 25 devotees took sannyas from Swami Ananda Arun. The age of the novices varied from 5 to 55. Bimasha had it to say that many enthusiastics could not become sannyasi as the organizers ran out of their stocks of Lockets, Malas and certificates.
Newspapers including Bimarsha said that the Guru expressed his wish to stay in Nepal “if the king granted him the permission”. Bimarsha on its February 7, 1986, issue published a statement from “ISKCON”. According to the statement, Maha Bishnu Swami, a British national, of Hare Krishna Mission demanded banishment of the Guru from Nepal. Or else Nepali youth may go stray, he cautioned. Above all, he called for a “Hindu unity” to drive the “anti-Hindu Guru” out of the Hindu kingdom. A newspaper quoted a Nepali woman sannyasi of the age 22-25 as saying that the Nepali media greatly “failed to understand the Guru and his mission”. The media reports said that the Guru left for Greece after more than a month’s stay in Nepal after “the government and the people of Nepal didn’t co-operate to set up his base in Nepal.
But Swami Ananda Arun disagrees on this count. He says that the cause was entirely “internal”. The Guru had visited Nepal at a time when Lokendr Bahadur Chanda was prime minister of Nepal, who happened to be an ardent supporter of Rajneesh. Swami Arun says that even the late King Birendra was favorable to the plan of his setting up the base in Nepal. The King had asked to “locate the base in the western part of the country to ensure regional development balances,” Swami Arun claims.
According to Swami Arun, the Western disciples did not want Rajneesh to stay and set up his center in Nepal for fear that if the base had been set up here in Nepal, he [Swami Arun] would have risen in prominence and left them [the Western disciples] in shadow. He says that he even had selected site to set up the office in the place where the present day Australian embassy is located. Swami Arun says that Osho has asked his Western disciples to provide Arun with necessary money. But they [Western disciples], who had kept about one million dollars fund in their personal accounts, succeeded in procrastinating the decision on various pretexts, Arun claims.
Arun recalls that every corner of Kathmandu was filled with the sannyasis putting on the maroon colored robe. From taxi drivers to hoteliers to the common folk, everybody welcomed the Guru here in Nepal, he says. He claims the “tourist” inflow rate in the January 1986 remains still unsurpassed with every hotel in Kathmandu filled to the capacity. And he really regrets at his failure to set up the base here in Nepal, which was later shifted to Poona, India. The Rajneesh headquarters in Poona, termed Osho International Commune, is currently the second most popular tourist destination in India after Taj Mahal near Delhi.” (Basnet 2002, pp. 19-21)
(Note: Note 4: Bimarsha probably was the most popular newspaper at that time. Note 5: Swami Arun says that the Prime minister’s appointment could not be materialized because of “protocol problem”. Basnet also writes (page 22-25) from a Seminar held in Kathmandu on Jestha 16, 2055 (B.S.) , organized by All Nepal Woman Union (Akil Nepal Mahila Sang) and meant to shed light on the “Osho Religion”. On the seminar Mohan Bikram Sing, an underground leader of Nepal Communist Party (Masal), had a critical paper entitled ‘Osho Religion and Its Impact on Society’, read by MP Pari Thapa. Sw Ananda Arun commented on Sing’s paper and said that the US (mis)took the commune for “the rise of Marxism, and sensed danger for Capitalism and Christianity”. In the same seminar, Sw Prem Basudev presented a paper reflecting Osho’s view and his life. Other commentators included Ninu Chapagai, Shakti Lasmsal and Pari Thapa.)
Sw Anand Arun had in the mid-1970s a stall under a Peepal tree at New Road in Kathmandu from where he was selling Osho’s books. His customers were mainly students and spiritual seekers, among them also notable figures from the court of King Birendra: Ranjan Raj Khanal and Renu Lal, principal secretaries to the king, and Dr Mrigendra Raj Pandey, the royal physician. They took a book and tape to King Birendra who had to admit that he didn’t understand a thing. Anyway, his interest was growing with time, and so was his aunt’s, Princess Princep Shah.
They were also instrumental in Osho’s going to Nepal in 1986
“It was because of Ranjan Raj Khanal that Osho could come and stay in Nepal in 1986 after being deported from America in spite of the resistance by a religious fanatic group. That time the American administration did not have a good relation with the Osho movement but Birendra’s government provided us all the facilities and told that Osho could stay here as long as he wanted. But unfortunately in spite of Birendra’s interest in Osho and Bhagwan’s constantly pointing towards Birendra’s potential of becoming his disciple it could not happen. The King had also sent a message that as Osho had just been deported from America it was not the right time for the King to meet him. He had said, “Keep Osho in here and he can build his new commune in western Nepal. After the media hype cools down I will come to meet him…
In later years also I used to send Osho’s videos to the King through my respected friend Krisha Prasad Bhattarai, when he was the Prime Minister of Nepal. Every Wednesday the Prime Minister used to have a private meeting with the King and before he went to the palace I used to meet him and send Osho’s books, cassette tapes and videos with his discourses as gifts for the King.” (Arun 2017, p. 303)
Queen Victoria had for years been very fond of the Nepalese mystic Shivapuri Baba and she housed him as a royal guest and her spiritual guide at Buckingham Palace for four years. The King’s secretary, Renu Lal, had written a book on Shivapuri Baba’s teachings, ‘Right Life’, and Osho had in the mid-1970s sent a note to Sw Anand Arun that he should go and visit his Samadhi behind the airport when he returned to Kathmandu. Arun was very impressed reading the biography of Shivapuri Baba and became overwhelmed when he later on met the author at his bookstall in the market. They became friends and the secretary was afterwards bringing Osho’s books and tapes to the palace for King Birendra.
Discourse setting for interviews and discourses
“The public talks were delivered in the large conference room on the ground floor of the Oberoi. Red-carpeted and cheerfully lit, it was packed every night, mainly with men from various professional bodies such as the legal and educational institutions of Nepal.
With everyone seated, Bhagwan would walk in, smiling, his hands in namasté, accompanied by Vivek, with Vadan, Devaraj and Rafia always hovering somewhere in the background. Bhagwan’s security was always uppermost in our minds. Having lived in a very protected and secure environment in Poona and Rajneeshpuram, now twice daily he was being exposed to the public – and that meant, necessarily, to the possibility that some fanatic would harm him.
As Bhagwan made his way to the front, there would be loud clapping – everyone actually standing up to clap – until he sat down on a chair placed in the middle of the dais. Arun had instructed those who had questions for Bhagwan that they limit themselves to one each; if time permitted, they could put a second question to Bhagwan…
Rafia remembered a certain evening question-and-answer session because one of the reporters was quite irate for some reason, and patently hostile to Bhagwan. “The press conferences in Nepal were quite unique to be part of in that they presented a forum in which people had a free rein to ask or do anything, and Bhagwan was answering absolute spontaneously,” he said. “I really was aware of him as the master in the marketplace, not in a controlled environment…
If the press conferences were spectacular, the discourses Bhagwan gave in his sitting room – discourses based on our questions – were memorable. Together with those discourses given in India, these later made up two books, ‘Light on the Path’ and ‘The Sword and the Lotus’. There would have been around a dozen of us in Kathmandu by then, attending each discourse and, as had been the case in Manali, we were all sitting only feet away from Bhagwan.” (Forman 2002, pp. 116,127)
Talks and visas in Nepal
“It was always risky when Osho was speaking because there was no way of knowing what He would say next. On entering Nepal, Hasya had told Osho that Nepal was, by law, a Hindu country, so please… “Don’t say anything against Hinduism.” In an evening discourse, in front of all the dignitaries and press men, He said that His friends had asked Him not to speak against Hinduism, but what could He do? This was the place to speak against Hinduism, do they expect Him to speak against Christianity? No, He would save that for when He visited Italy…
At that time the film crew from Italy had got visas for Nepal and Sarjano had arrived. Applications for Osho to visit Italy were under way, and looked promising…
We were in Nepal for three months and it was time to extend our own visas. We had not been able to find a palace, nor even a small house for Osho, and so we were still in the hotel. The situation did not look promising, even though the local people, and especially the hotel staff were loving and respectful towards Osho.” (Shunyo 1999, p. 158)
S.K. Saksena on Osho’s first discourse
“My wife and I was checking into Oberoi Soaltee, when we noticed that the lobby was full of people in orange robes, each dangling a pendant, with a photo of Bhagwan. Enquiries confirmed that, yes Bhagwan was very much in the hotel, observing silence. Many floors in the hotel had been taken up by his entourage. Each floor was well guarded. Every evening, the lawns of the hotel were overflowing with folk from the valley, who would wait for Bhagwan to give darshan. Then they would go away, when told that he was still in silence. The very thought, that I should attempt to meet him, did not cross my mind. However, my wife kept on insisting, that I was one person to whom he would not say ‘No’. Very reluctantly, I tried to find his room number. The hotel staff had been ordered not to reveal his whereabouts. However, with some manipulation I managed to meet his very suspicious secretary, who kept on saying “No, No,” even before I had said anything. Finally, I gave him my card and said, “I do not want to meet Rajneesh. Just give him this visiting card of mine. That’s all!”
Then things moved so fast. Like electricity, the word went around that Bhagwan was indeed going to emerge from his silence and give a discourse, in the Banquet Hall in the evening. We bought our tickets and purposely sat in the last row, so as not to be noticed. Besides, I was not sure, whether he would recognize me after 28 years. Suddenly there was hushed silence. The robed disciples formed a corridor and he appeared with folded hands. A benign figure with a hypnotic smile and in a diamond studded designer robe. His cap had two rows of diamonds and his slippers too! He settled down in an executive chair and started by saying, “We are so lucky today!” Then pointing towards me, he continued “Today my Guru’s son is here with us.” All heads turned towards the last row, but still no one could make out, who was being referred to. Then he started his discourse. My mind was too much in a daze to concentrate on what he was preaching.
The discourse over, the disciples again formed a corridor. Much to everyone’s surprise, he headed straight for me and caught hold of my hands and looked lovingly into my eyes. Minutes passed and no word was exchanged between us. We looked at each other and in silence spoke so much. His hands were so soft and I did manage to notice his diamond-studded watch. After what appeared like eternity, he folded his hands in Namaste and walked on. Bhagwan had disappeared into silence again.” (S.K. Saksena. In: merinews, 11.06.2008. Reprinted at: www.oshonews.com/2017)
(Note: S.K. Saksena’s father is Dr. Sri Krishna Saksena, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy, University of Hawaii, who was Osho’s much loved lecturer and mentor at the University of Jabalpur, India, in the 1950’s).
Discourses in Nepal
“Buddhism is a non-fanatic religion. Just now when we were in Nepal – Nepal is a Buddhist country – the chief of all the Buddhist monks used to come to listen to my lectures. And I came to know that he was going round meeting ministers, and the prime minister, and other important people and telling them “You should come. Don’t decide by reading nonsense newspapers. Come and listen to him.”
He used to sit just in front of me – an old man – and whenever I said something which was very close to Buddha’s heart, I could see that old man’s head nodding. He was not doing it knowingly. He was just so much in tune that he felt it; this was the purest thing that he has heard. And I was not talking about Buddha; but the taste he understood.
The whole day he was moving around Kathmandu, forgetting his own work as president of the monks of Nepal. He was telling people that they should come and listen to me, and saying, “Don’t be bothered what newspapers say. When the man is here, why should you miss him?” And he brought many people by and by.” The Transmission of the Lamp. Talks in Uruguay (1989). Chapter 21, p. 200. 05.06.1986 pm.
Osho on answering questions by talking and not in writing
“The problem is whether to answer the question or the questioner. If you answer the question and do not care at all about the questioner, your answer is going to be bookish; it has no spirit in it. It is not a personal communion.
This is one of the reasons that none of the enlightened masters of the world has ever written a book. It cannot be just coincidence. They were immensely educated, cultured people, most of them from royal families – very rich, very talented. But what happened when they became enlightened was that they always chose the spoken word. And the reason is this: they didn’t want to answer the questions – in a book you can answer only the questions – they wanted to answer the questioner.
In a book you cannot take care of the questioner. You don’t know who is going to read it – it cannot have a personal intimacy. It is not addressed to anyone in particular; it is unaddressed – just to whomsoever it may concern.
None of the enlightened masters has ever written a single word. Consistently, in different parts of the world, in different times, they have always fallen upon the spoken word, because the spoken word has a warmth. The written word is cold, dead; the spoken word is breathing, it has a heartbeat.” Light on the Path. Talks in the Himalayas (1988). Chapter 33, p. 335. Kathmandu, 07.02.1986.
Osho on his stay in Nepal
“I left India and went to Nepal, because the king of Nepal was very much interested in me, in my books; the prime minister of Nepal was interested. The prime minister came to see me but he said, “It will be very difficult. Although it will be against our wishes, we cannot allow you to remain in Nepal because we are a small country and we are in constant danger from India to be taken over. They have done this in Sikkim; they can do it in Nepal, and we don’t have armies or anything. So the king wants to inform you: We love you, we love your teachings, but we are unable to risk the whole country.
I decided that it was time that I should go on a world tour to see which country has the courage to accept a man who has nothing but ideas which can create a better humanity and a better world.” Om Shanti Shanti Shanti (1989). Session 12, p. 119.
Osho commenting on letter written by an old Indian sannyasin
“Osho not only confirmed the union of consciousness between Gautama the Buddha and himself, but also confirmed the state of enlightenment of the man who’d written the letter. At the end of the discourse, as Osho was leaving, the man calmly stood up and went towards the Master, letting himself fall at the feet of the Master while the Master touched him on his head, giving him his blessings. Many of us burst out in tears of joy, seeing the Master bless an enlightened disciple.
It’s important to remember that, in all the years that Osho had been speaking to us in Pune One and at the Ranch, no one had stood up and gone toward the Master when he was leaving or while he was talking. There were always guards ready to stop anyone who would make even a slight movement in that direction. This time, however, everything happened as if it was the most natural thing in the world and no one in the crowd stopped the man from going toward the Master. As far as I know, this episode was the only one like it in the history of the Master.” (Rosciano 2013, p. 290)
Osho on going on a World Tour
“The world is not ready, but a part of the world – the cream, the young and the intelligent – is absolutely ready. The moment they heard that I am going for a world tour… immediately I received invitations from Greece, from Italy, from Spain, from Portugal, from Switzerland, from New Zealand, from Austria, from Australia, from Costa Rica, from Paraguay, and from many more other countries.
Even three governments have invited me, knowing perfectly well that America is against me and is pressuring governments that I should not be allowed there. Three governments have been courageous enough…
And those countries are not rich – poor counties, South American countries. But they want to show to America, “You don’t have the monopoly over the world.”
So going around the world will help us to find who is our friend and who is not. And my own experience is that one of our friends is equal to one hundred enemies… because they don’t have anything, just old, rotten ideas which are out of date. Just a little push and they will fall apart. They are fighting for the dead. We are fighting for the unborn. And the decision of existence is always for life.” Light on the Path (1988). Chapter 20, p. 197. Kathmandu 21.01.1986.
Question in Kathmandu
“The next morning Osho began talking to a group of about ten in His sitting room. The first question was from Asheesh and he was asking that “In these times of uncertainty, the best – and the worst – seems to be coming out in those of us who are around you. Would you comment on this?” (Shunyo 1991, p. 97)
Press meetings in the evening
“In the evening Osho talked in the hotel ballroom to press and visitors, at first mainly Nepali, but as the days passed the color of the audience was changing from black and grey to shades of orange. A Buddhist monk, small, with shaved head and in saffron robes began attending these discourses. He sat in the front row and asked Osho questions. Osho began by saying that, “To be a Buddha is beautiful, but to be a Buddhist is ugly.” The Buddhist monk got the full treatment and I was surprised and in great admiration for the man, when he turned up the next night, and the next. In fact he came regularly for a few weeks, until one day Osho received a letter from him saying that his monastery had forbidden him to attend any more.” (Shunyo 1999, p. 157)
Maneesha writes on discourses and household
“A routine soon became established. We would have discourses each morning at 8:00 a.m., and in the evenings there would be meetings with the press and various professional groups of Nepalese in the large press room on the ground floor of the hotel…
Anando, who had arrived in Kathmandu days after me, was given the job of seeing Bhagwan daily to read him various press clippings. Vadan and Iti looked after press inquiries, Asheesh, the audio system, while Chetana spent her day washing and ironing Bhagwan’s robes.” (Forman 2002, pp. 110,121)
Satyam Anando writes in his introduction
“In the sitting room of His suite, Bhagwan began almost immediately to give discourses which were attended by about ten disciples. “Outside the windows,” Maneesha said, “you could see an old man and an old woman plowing their field with oxen… There was a daily walk-by attended by about five hundred people, mostly non-sannyasin Nepalese. In the evenings there were press conferences in the hotel’s grand auditorium.” (Sw Satyam Anando. Introduction to: Light on the Path. Talks in the Himalayas. 1988)
Sarjano asking questions
“Sarjano had arrived in Kathmandu with the idea of compiling a book made up of questions he wanted submitted to Bhagwan for his response. Bhagwan agreed, and so for those discourses where Sarjano’s questions were being answered, Sarjano himself asked the questions.
His questions were beautiful, and it was the very first one that was particularly meaningful for me:… “If I have to give a title to this book, it will be ‘The Words To Say It’ – because I can’t give up. I can’t show my silence – neither my tears, neither my laughter. Please help me to find the words to say it, to explain to my people in the valley what enlightenment is, what an enlightened master is.”
I knew the feeling well, and in subsequent years was to become even more familiar with the sentiments Sarjano was expressing. I am not a mystic encountering the situation Bhagwan had described when he’d spoken of the silent part of the brain needing the right side of the brain to express itself. Yet in commentaries in the darshan diaries during the Poona days, and later in my books about Bhagwan, I was continually confronted with the challenge of finding words about experiences for which there simply is no vocabulary.” (Forman 2002, p. 134)
In Oberoi Hotel, Kathmandu
“The fourth floor of the hotel was now fully occupied by sannyasins. A bedroom became an office, and there was always a whirlwind of activity going on in there. A few doors away Devaraj and Maneesha worked day and night transcribing Osho’s discourses. Their room was always full, as people turned up to help them – Premda, who was Osho’s eye doctor, handsome, conservative, German, and a bad loser at tennis. It was in this small bedroom that seemed always to be filled with breakfast trolleys, that the German Rajneesh Times came to sort out their questions with Maneesha, letters and questions from sannyasins and as many people who could fit in the room were welcome to help check the typed manuscripts against the tapes of the discourses…
Each morning the very intimate talks in His sitting room continued, and after being away from Osho for the first time since I had come to Pune, seven years before, I now felt each moment was a bonus. I was living in an abundance of love, joy and the excitement of exploring The Path with the Master…
Osho began to walk in the grounds of the hotel, past the tennis courts, and the swimming pool, lawns and gardens. He couldn’t see much of the grounds though because his path was flanked by visitors and disciples who came to greet Him. Some of them would simply smile and wave, but others threw themselves at His feet, and that was troublesome.” (Shunyo 1999, pp. 156,157)
Parmartha and Mistlberger commenting on Osho’s health
“I do not think the evidence that Osho received thallium is very convincing, the symptoms do not really match those Osho was experiencing. The ‘official’ line is, and he himself seemed to believe that he had been poisoned by thallium. However Osho seemed really quite well between late 1985 and 1987, in Greece, and was in fairly good shape in the Himalayas, the world tour, and in Bombay too for almost two years. Any in-depth biographer has surely to note that Osho began complaining again of his symptoms in 1987, just when he would have been reunited with his dental chair...
So it would appear that Osho was not ‘really quite well’ between late ’85 and ’87. I myself was present in Kathmandu for the entire month of February 1986, and I attended Osho’s daily ‘walk-by’ that he did on the grounds of the Soaltee Oberoi Hotel, as well as his evening lectures in the main ballroom. He was at that point fifty-four years old; this was just three months after his incarceration in the American jails. Superficially at least, I’d have to agree with Parmatha: there was no obvious outward sign that he was unwell. I do not recall him missing any of the daily walks or lectures and in these lectures he seemed well enough. A friend of mine, a young Japanese disciple, stood up several times during the question-and-answer period that followed the nightly talks to ask Osho bold questions. In all cases, Osho’s answers were responsive and sharp.” (Mistlberger 2010, p. 379)
Maneesha on Osho’s health
“After a few weeks in Kathmandu, Bhagwan began to feel unwell. His stomach was upset. He was also losing weight. Perhaps it was the food. Fresh vegetables had to be flown in from Delhi, but even so, Indian fresh vegetables were not as nutritious as food from the West had been. Perhaps he was still suffering the aftermath of the days in American jails. Of course it didn’t occur to any of us at this stage that something other than the general trauma of that experience could explain his ill-health: his painful back, his hair loss while in Kulu-Manali; and now his stomach upset and weight loss. He also began to suffer a spasm of the facial muscles, particularly around the eyes. It was evident to those of us sitting with him in discourse.
Bhagwan told Devaraj that reading produced a sense of nausea and vertigo and of lights in front of his eyes. When Devaraj examined Bhagwan’s eyes, a definite pallor of the optic discs was evident. This, coupled with Bhagwan’s difficulty in seeing, indicated optic nerve damage. But at that time Devaraj couldn’t fathom what was going on.” (Forman 2002, p. 145)
Sannyasins waiting for Osho with Chinmaya in Pokhara
“The dining room was sixty feet long, with bare concrete walls and floor. It was empty except for the serving pots at one end and at the far, far other end was a table and chair where Swami Yoga Chinmaya sat. He was the commune leader and very much respected by the residents, who made certain that nobody entered the dining hall by “Swamiji’s” entrance. We were told that in respect no one said his name, but called him swamiji…
Chinmaya certainly has a presence, he always moves very slowly and his face shows a serene and tranquil expression. To me he represented the holy man of maybe one thousand years ago. He has been a disciple of Osho’s since the early Bombay days when he worked as Osho’s secretary. I noticed him ten years earlier in Pune, when he and his girlfriend shaved their heads and declared they were celibate.” (Shunyo 1999, p. 146)
Mistlberger on discourses
“My own journey ‘in search of wise men’ in the Orient had culminated in Nepal in February of 1986 when, shortly after visiting the shrine of the legendary sage Shivapuri Baba, I found myself sitting in front of Osho every night for a month straight as he gave spontaneous talks at the Soaltee Oberoi Hotel in Kathmandu for about a hundred and fifty, mostly Nepali, disciples. What became quickly apparent over the course of the month was that there was, in the ultimate sense, no Osho. There was of course the man, complete with his somewhat amorphous personal identity, displaying his usual remarkable grace, charisma and eloquence. He did seem to be a bit tired at times (and evidently was not too well then, that being only a few months after his ordeal in the grubby American jailhouses). But the sense of a defined entity, consistent and predictable, sitting there in his chair, was clearly an illusion. The sense of a presence was marked, and vast. Something was very much there, to a degree and with a depth and quality that I had not experienced before (and I had met, even by then, many remarkable men and women). This was by all definitions an über-remarkable being…
I had the opportunity in early 1986 to attend his nightly talks in Nepal, sitting not more than twenty-five feet away as he spoke every evening for several weeks straight. He had the ability to turn an entirely spontaneous talk in a hotel conference room in front of a hundred and fifty people into a deeply intimate affair, one where you felt like he was speaking personally to you as he discoursed about any and everything…
One day in late February ’86, Osho left Nepal for Greece. He went only with a small group of caretakers. He was not to be followed there.” (Mistlberger 2010, pp. 452,68,456)
“Bhagwan decided to go on a World Tour, “so I can talk to everybody and bring them out of unnecessary chaos. “Leaving Nepal in mid-February, He flew first to Bangkok and then to Dubai where He was met by sannyasins who had rented a Lear jet.
From there He was flown to Greece, the first stop on a World Tour which was to culminate almost six months later in His return to Poona, where He now lives.
In these discourses before you, Bhagwan advised His disciples to be lights on the path.” (Sw Satyam Anando. Introduction to: Light on the Path. Talks in the Himalayas. 1988)
“At 7 in the morning I am told that Bhagwan is going to leave around noon. It is a secret still, nobody in the Hotel should notice. At 11h45 Bhagwan leaves the Hotel. It had been told that he was going to visit the Zoo of Kathmandu.
In the afternoon a few hundred Sannyasins are in front of the Hotel, wondering if Bhagwan is going to come back, there are rumors talking about Bhagwan going to New-Zealand, Australia, Europe…
Bhagwan Shree left Kathmandu capital of the small Himalayan Kingdom Nepal on Feb. 16 by plane accompanied by His aides including Ma Prem Hasya, Ma Yog Vivek, Ma Mukti, Swami Devaraj, Swami Ashish and Swami Jayesh.” (The Rajneesh Times. India. 1986:6)
6.4 Talks in Agios Nikolaos, Crete
All discourse series from Crete are presented in Volume III / Bibliography / World Tour, where bibliographic data as well as excerpts from introductions and opening discourses are to be found.
Satya Vedant on Osho’s arrival in Greece
“Osho left once more with his motley group, this time to the island of Crete where permission had been granted to land. Everybody was very helpful; the luggage was specially processed through customs before taking off to the house on the south of the island where Osho had been invited. It was owned by Michael Cacoyannis, the director of the movie, Zorba the Greek. The place couldn’t have been more appropriate and beautiful.
Osho had permission to stay there for one month. The sannyasins had completely repainted the house and made it ready for Osho to move in. As usual, Osho walked around, saw the house, looked for a good spot for the discourse.
But problems were already starting. Every Athens paper was bombarded with a well-orchestrated smear campaign against Osho. Scandalous fabricated stories were published to malign him and his people. Nothing that he said was ever published, only what was said about him.” (Joshi 2010, p. 193)
Maneesha on discourses in Agios Nikolaos
“Early in the morning of February 19th, the day after I arrived, Anando was at the door of my room. Everyone was needed to help clean the villa in preparation for discourse that night. This would be the first opportunity to step inside the house Bhagwan was occupying, and I leapt into action.
One approached the entrance up some steps onto a little porch and entered through a huge heavy wooden door. I recall that the interior was of sandstone and the floors were of natural wood. A quaint little winding staircase led up to Bhagwan’s rooms – a bedroom, which was circular and looked out over the Aegean Sea, and bathroom. Downstairs there was a large sitting and dining area, a place for a log fire, a kitchen and a bedroom – the latter shared by Rafia and Vivek. Greecian urns and several other costly looking ornaments adorned the main room. A large round table, a sofa and chairs sat at one end of the room, but Amrito had wisely removed virtually everything else. The house would be easier to maintain with less in it, and she did not want to risk any of Kondouros’ possessions being accidentally broken…
But I didn’t want to miss out on the action, and I was sorry to have to be absent from what felt a really historic moment – Bhagwan’s first discourse in Europe, and more particularly, in the birthplace of Socrates. All the discourses Bhagwan would give in Crete made up the book, ‘Socrates Poisoned Again After Twenty-Five Centuries’. Perhaps an area outside had not yet been decided upon or would take more preparation to set up. Whatever the reason, that first discourse was held inside, at one end of the sittingroom. Devaraj asked the questions in my place…
By the next morning my back was better and I was able to attend the second discourse. Typically, Bhagwan was not wasting any time now he was in Greece: there were two discourses a day, questions being invited from us sannyasins and from the international press which was beginning to appear…
From the evening of February 20th, discourses were held outside….
I was glad of the coat I’d put on at the last minute. The sun had gone down and the air was becoming cooler as darkness rapidly descended around us. The front porch of the house and the tree under which Bhagwan was sitting were floodlit. The effect created a feeling of drama, and I found myself imagining a caption to go with the picture: “By the sea one evening, seated under his favorite tree, the beloved sage addresses his waiting disciples.” Had we done this before? There was such a sense of rightness, of familiarity, about the setting. It really seemed like Socrates and his disciples all over again.” (Forman 2002, pp. 179-181)
Shunyo recalls discourses on Crete
“Osho started giving discourses the day after He arrived and within a few days there were five hundred sannyasins from the U.S.A. and Europe. He sat under a carob tree in the courtyard, and musicians sat together on the stone patio and played as Osho entered and when He left. Everyone screamed with surprise and delight as He danced with Vivek playfully dancing around Him; they moved together and then apart and laughing all the time they danced up the steps together and through the large oak doors into the house.
On the days when the spring weather was stormy we sat inside the house in a huge room on the ground floor; but we filled that room to capacity and it overflowed with people sitting up the stairs and on the window sills.
Osho answered questions from disciples and the world media in discourses held twice a day. It was as though we were reliving the times when the wise man was sought after and consulted for his guidance. The press asked Osho questions about their political leaders, the pope, birth control, the death penalty, marriage problems, women’s lib, money, health – both of body and mind – armaments and meditation. Yes, there were a few questions about meditation, but of course, the usual yellow journalism was there with the same old questions:
“You are also known as the sex guru…?”
Osho: “The definition which calls me a sex guru is not only false, it is absurd. To put it right: I am the only person in the world who is anti-sex. But that needs tremendous understanding. You cannot hope for that understanding from journalists.
There are at least four hundred books in my name, and there is only one book about sex. Only that book is talked about, the three hundred and ninety-nine, nobody cares about, and those are the best. The book on sex is just preparing you so that you can understand the other books and go higher, dropping small problems, reaching to the heights of human consciousness – but nobody talks about them.”” (Shunyo 1999, p. 163)
“(Greek) Ma Amrito [Jenny Pica] had invited Osho to come to Greece… The place is gorgeous – perched on the edge of a cliff, surrounded on three sides by the ocean…
The surroundings seem dead set on contributing their all to the occasion by laying on a crystal-clear night, with an almost-full moon and bright, sparkling stars. In the background the endless waves create beautiful music. Osho, with his characteristic love of trees – and equal love of the dramatic! – has wedged himself into the arms of a lovely carob tree. We are only about 12 people, but it feels as if the energy of the commune, which is life to us, is already coming together.
I have absolutely no idea what he talks about; I am too overwhelmed with joy and relief that he is safe and back with us again…
On the fourth or fifth day Maneesha told me he had chosen one of my questions to answer in the evening discourse. He had requested that we all write questions for him to talk about… Unfortunately, the question [on his feelings for the ocean] was never answered, as in the early afternoon one of the big Greek TV stations showed up. Bhagawati and I were commandeered to play “Twinkies” again, and our beautiful magical place was shattered in the evening, as the presenter fired the predictable sexy, Rolls-Royce, and political questions at him. The space was never to be regained, and by the next day we were flooded with the press, and the events leading to his eventual arrest and deportation were set in motion.” (Ma Prem Veena. Viha Connection, 2004:2)
Listening to Osho
“It is a balmy spring morning in the small village of Agios Nikolaos, which is nestled in the eastern hills of the island of Crete; a crystal-clear, blue Aegean sea stretches as far as one can see. Osho is giving discourse, sitting in an easy chair under a gnarled tree in an overgrown courtyard, the very image of an ancient sage. There are maybe a hundred of us listening to Him, while many more are due to fly in from all over the world. Soon He will rise and climb slowly up the staircase leading to the villa He is staying in, and I am on the ready to open the door for Him at the top of the staircase.” (Ma Anand Bhagawati. Viha Connection. 2008:1)
Osho speaking on the ocean
“Go to the sea: there are millions of waves. You never see the sea, you always see the waves, because they are on the surface. But every wave is nothing but a waving of the sea; the sea is waving through all the waves. Remember the ocean and forget the waves – because waves really don’t exist, only the ocean exists.
The ocean can exist without the waves, but the waves cannot exist without the ocean. If there is no ocean, there can be no waves – or can there be? Then what will wave in them? They cannot be, but the ocean can be. There is no need for the waves; the ocean can be silent. If there is no wind blowing, the ocean will be there, silent.
The ocean can exist without the waves, but the waves cannot exist without the ocean. So waves are just the surface, and waves are accidental – through the action of the winds they have become into existence. They have come into existence from without; some accident has created them. If the wind is not blowing, the ocean will be silent and non-waving. So waves are accidents created from without, on the surface – the ocean is something totally different. And the same is the case with all beings. The tree is also a wave, and the man is also a wave, and the rock is also a wave. And behind the rock, and the tree, and the man, the same ocean is hidden. That ocean is called by Upanishads the Brahma. The Brahma, the ultimate soul, the absolute soul, is just the ocean. So look at a man but don’t cling to the surface: immediately move to the depth and see the Brahma hidden there.” Vedanta. Seven Steps to Samadhi (1976); The Book (1984). Vol II, p. 378.
“He went first to the Island of Crete, Greece, where he was given a thirty-day tourist visa. He had arrived at a private airfield, unnoticed by the press. Yet mysteriously the very next morning the Athens press carried lurid stories about the “Sex Guru.” Pictures taken seven years earlier at Poona showing semi-naked people were published to embellish old rumors of sex orgies. The stories continued over the following days – obviously part of a well-orchestrated campaign.
Simultaneously the same material was sent, anonymously, to the Orthodox Christian bishops of Crete. Within just five days of Bhagwan’s arrival, the Greek Orthodox Church convened a meeting of the High Holy Synod to discuss his presence. They issued a declaration, published in the press, labeling Bhagwan a “severe threat to public safety.” The local bishop, Metropolitan Dimitrios of Petra, distributed a pamphlet warning citizens of the Sex Guru “spinning a web” around their young people. The pamphlet accused Bhagwan of creating mental breakdowns among his followers, of conducting “unimaginable orgies,” of threats, extortions, smuggling, drugs, tax evasion and general immoral behaviour. In a press conference the Bishop declared, “The man is dangerous… a menace to public safety… a charlatan who buys peoples’ consciences and leads them astray.” (Appleton 1987, p. 64)
Listening to Osho
“I was in Milan in early 1986 when I learned that Osho was in Crete. I decided to leave immediately to go there to be with him. On my first night there I went to the discourse only to see that Osho was sitting peacefully under a tree by the Aegean Sea, but that there were very bright stage lights pointed directly at Him and His eyes. “This must be painful to Him,” I thought. I mentioned this to my friend Rashid as we left.
The next morning I received a message asking to come to the house early. I was asked if I had experience with lighting, and when I said I had some, I was asked to give a list of what I needed and come back later.
I asked for three white cloth napkins, some thread, a needle, and a ladder. I sewed the napkins around where He would sit, and then I moved the lights behind His chair and pointed them at the napkins. And there it was. Osho’s stand-in was lit perfectly, with no light directly on his eyes. The quality of the light was soft, as compared to the harshness of the previous night. I was finished.
I was told to sit right in front of Osho, a short three feet from Him. This seating arrangement would last for three nights. I had never been this close to my Master before. I would never be again.
I can’t tell you what happened on those three nights, or what He spoke about. I was in another world. It is hard to describe what happened to me. The closest thing I can think of is that it was like being on acid. Colors were swirling in front of me. The air was alive. I couldn’t concentrate. I could barely breathe. I couldn’t hear anything that was said, nor did I actually see Him. He was there, I was there, but I was in another world.
I was grateful and thankful when my three nights were over and I was told to find a seat somewhere else in the audience. It had been too much to take. The joy was overwhelming. I had spent three nights in a dizzying world. I was happy to find a seat someplace in the rear of the gathering. I was exhausted, spent, and so very happy.” (Sw Deva Tarshita. Viha Connection. 2014:5)
Gordon writes from Crete
“The scene at Ayios Nikolaos is as playful and colorful as the boats in the harbor. There are flowers in the fields and on the hills overlooking the hotels – geraniums, hibiscuses, bougainvilleas, almond trees in bloom. Sannyasins fill up the Ormos bar and lobby and porch, the terrace of the restaurant across the street, and the huge semicircular café in the center of the town…
The whole scene feels a bit like a camp reunion or a spiritual Fort Laudedale. There is no security, no sniffing of hair, no armed guards or, for that matter, guards of any kind. We line up half an hour before discourses, morning and evening. The gate to Koundouros’ villa opens and we file up the hill to the stone terrace. Musicians play and, after some time, Rajneesh, holding Vivek’s hand, descends the stone steps of the villa, sits in his chair underneath the carob tree, and begins.” (Gordon 1987, p. 216)
Shunyo remembers her feelings sitting with Osho
“Osho answered questions from disciples and the world media in discourses held twice a day. It was as though we were relieving the times when the wise man was sought after and consulted for his guidance.” (Shuyo 1991, p. 103)
Osho says on Anando
“As she had started doing in Kathmandu, Anando would visit Bhagwan every afternoon the show him press clippings and keep him informed of, as she put it, “the insanities of the world.”
Bhagwan once described Anando as “my only link with the world. She is my news media, my television, my radio, my newspapers.” He said on another occasion that however much work he gave her to do, he had never heard her hesitate or say no. She was a woman of “rare intelligence” and “a cuckoo!” he said. “And I love cuckoos, because cuckoo will reach enlightenment before anybody else.” (Forman 2002, p. 191)
Health and reading
“His health, however, was not good, but as usual he gave little indication of his suffering. His hair had stopped falling but his gait was affected and it seemed as if his eyes were permanently damaged, which made reading very difficult. He had stopped reading books years ago; now he could barely read the headlines of the endless newspaper clippings about him that his secretary used to bring him to look at. He simply glanced at them as if they were about somebody else.” (Joshi 2010, p. 202)
“For seven years I have not read any book, any magazine, any newspaper, listened to the radio, watched television – nothing. It is all rubbish.” Path of the Mystic (1988), p. 91.
Discourses on Crete
“All the discourses Bhagwan would give in Crete made up the book, ‘Socrates Poisoned Again After Twenty-Five Centuries’. Perhaps an area outside had not yet been decided upon or would take more preparation to set up. Whatever the reason, that first discourse was held inside, at one end of the sitting room. Devaraj asked the questions in my place. The first question was from ‘The Rajneesh Times’ of Germany and Holland. Bhagwan was asked: “How do you feel to be here in Greece, the land of Socrates?”…
From the evening of February 20th, discourses were held outside. On that night, the Dutch television, TROS TV, was present, as well as the German magazine, ‘Quick’, which was, once again, living up to its name. As the discourse would be televised for Dutch audiences, Bhagwan had agreed that the channel’s representative conduct the interview. I sat next to him, and as he read out his question I gazed at Bhagwan sitting under the enormous tree directly in front of me…
From that day on, media people were present almost every day. The Dutch paper, ‘Nieuwe Revu’; NBC television from America; AP, UPI and Reuters news agencies; the American ‘Newsweek’, and ‘Therapy Today’; ‘Tempo’ and ‘Brigitte’ from Germany; ‘Sonntags Blick’ and ‘Schweizer Illustierte’ from Switzerland; the Italian magazines, ‘Oggi’, ‘Cleo’ and ‘L’Illustrazione Italiano’; the French ‘Le Figaro’; an Italian radio station and an Australian television station too. Some of the media – like the Dutch interviewer – had met Bhagwan before, at Rajneeshpuram…
Curiously enough, Bhagwan was to observe, the foreign press was as positive in its reportage as the Greek press tended to be negative.” (Forman 2002, pp. 180-182)
“A mystic is one who knows but cannot say it.
He can live it; you can look into his eyes, you can look into his gestures, you can feel it in his presence, but there is no way to say it. It does not mean that the mystic remains silent. Many mystics have remained silent for the simple reason that everything you say falls short; the essential thing that you wanted to say is not contained in the words. When you hear your own words you know that which you wanted to convey is not conveyed. So many mystics have remained silent.
A few mystics have chosen to speak because it is possible not to say it directly, but to create a situation through words in which it is indicated indirectly. For example, if I just remain silent for a second – just in the middle of a sentence – you will feel my silence more than if I was silent for two hours here. If I was silent for two hours here, your mind cannot start chattering because it is so involved with listening. When I suddenly stop it becomes more curious what I am going to say – a full stop comes to your thinking. A little gap of silence may give you a little taste which can lead to great revolutions of your being. There are devices which can be created which may not help you directly, but which can help indirectly. For that a mystic has not only to be a mystic, he has also to be a master – which is a totally different art.
That’s why it becomes possible that there are masters who are not mystics. They are false, they know nothing; they just know the art of mastery. They can create the device but they have nothing to convey. They can make the house but the house is empty. And there are mystics who have too much to give but they don’t know how to give it; they are dumb. Rarely it happens that a master and mystic happen together in a man – a coincidence. Then the master can manage. Without saying it, still he can manage to indicate it, to give you a certain taste of it. His devices will not be at all false…
I am a mystic and my whole work is my mystery school. My sannyasins are part of the mystery school. In ancient Greece those mystery schools were small schools; this is a mystery university, it is all around the world. But don’t ask more. For anybody who is really interested, the only way to understand is to become part of this mystic teaching.
Experience it; that’s the only explanation.” Socrates Poisoned again after 25 Centuries (1988). Chapter 25, p. 355. Crete, 03.03.1986 pm.
Deportation from Greece
Rahasya remembers Greece
“The Master lived in a beautiful Mediterranean house on a hill overlooking the ocean. He held morning and evening discourses in the open, sitting in the shade of a mulberry tree. Only around a hundred sannyasins found their way to Greece. We enjoyed the most intimate meetings with Osho. In a vision, I saw Socrates teaching in ancient Greece. The cicadas sang their hymns, the morning breeze gently caressed our skin, and made Osho’s long beard flow in the wind. Before and after his talks, delightful music invited us to dance. I felt overjoyed and grateful to meet him again. To be near the master had been my deepest longing ever since I first met Osho. He was like a magnet pulling me towards him. My mind could not understand. Something in my heart jumped and felt at home. I did not want to be anywhere else than with him. We spent a wonderful week sitting at the feet of our master, relaxing and meeting friends. One day we went for an excursion to the eastern tip of Crete. When we came back in the late afternoon, we heard the impossible: Osho had been arrested, his visa has been cancelled and he was to fly out the same evening to Athens.” (Rahasya 2003, p. 72)
Osho on his arrest
“In Greece they allowed me for four weeks, and just after fifteen days suddenly I was arrested without being told any reason. And they threatened – because I was asleep – they threatened my people, “We will put the house on fire.” And they showed them dynamite, saying, “We will use dynamite if you don’t just give Bhagwan to us. Immediately he should leave this country.”
John ran to me. He woke me up, and he said, “This is the situation. What should we do?” While he was saying this to me, the police started throwing big rocks at the windows, at the doors, breaking the house. It seemed almost as if bombs were exploding. I came down, and I told those people, “You are just being unnecessarily inhuman. If I am asleep they have to wake me up; I have to dress and come down to you. Couldn’t you have waited for five minutes? And what was the reason for cutting my visa short? I have been here fifteen days, and I have not left the house.”
And he said it was because the archbishop felt that I was dangerous. I could destroy their tradition, I could destroy their church; and because he was the head of the church, the government had to listen to him. And the president decided.”…
And the archbishop, who may be sermonizing in the churches, “Love your enemy as yourself,” was threatening in the church that if I didn’t leave the country I would be burned alive.” The Path of the Mystic. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 39, p. 406. Punta del Este, 23.05.1986 pm.
“Arriving in Greece early in 1986, shortly after Osho got there, I almost immediately started work at the villa in Crete where he was staying. He was giving discourses at that time and my job was to make duplicate copies of the discourses for general distribution.
I’d been there for only about three days when, one afternoon while I was downstairs working and Osho was sleeping in his room upstairs, word came that the police were on their way. The message went round the house like wildfire…
I quickly moved to the patio with my camera – a Polaroid with photos shooting out at the bottom. I was hurriedly taking pictures of what was going on – as much as I could – trying to catch all the mindless aggression.
Osho had spoken so much about how the press, for all the damage it can do, is also there for our protection, and I remembered this and tried to capture as much of it as I could for the papers, should they come later.
But in the end the police confiscated all the photos.
Meanwhile Osho came out of the front door with a policeman on either side of him and Mukta scuttling behind them, arguing with them in Greek. There was intense loud discussion for a minute or two, till suddenly Osho stopped in his tracks and turned to her:
“Mukta! Silence! They don’t have heads!” (Ma Shantam Lani. In: Savita 2014, p. 194)
Lani on Osho’s arrest
“I was actually in the house when Osho was arrested and saw how fearless he was. It was amazing to watch the whole thing. I remember Anando coming in the house saying, “Lock the doors and the windows, the police are coming.” They broke through a window to get into the house and I remember Osho said, “Just tell them I am getting dressed.” He was so easy about the whole thing. When he was being escorted out the front door and Mukta was arguing with the police – I will never forget him saying, “Mukta, silence, they don’t have heads.” He then got into the car and they drove him to the police station and finally to the airport (to which I didn’t go). We all didn’t know where he went. That’s when he started his World Tour.” (Ma Shantam Lani. Interview. www.oshonews.com/14/05/2017)
Video 1. Police entering Osho’s house in Agios Nikolaos and driving him to Heraklion airport. In progress.
“I had been there only two weeks, and I had never gone out of the house; but they could see my people – at least five hundred sannyasins from all over Europe had gathered. They were well-accustomed to tourists, because it is a tourist place, but they have never seen such loving people. And just because of my sannyasins, although they could not understand me – the language was a great barrier – still, a few of the village people started coming just to sit with me in the morning, in the evening. And that’s what was hurting the religious hierarchy.
The archbishop was getting mad because nobody comes to his congregation; and I had been there for fifteen days and I had created a big congregation. In his congregation, between six and twelve old women who were almost dead used to come to listen to him. He was getting afraid, sending telegrams to the president, to the prime minister, to other ministers, to the police chief, giving interviews which were full of lies – because he knew nothing about me. And his fear became infectious: the government also became afraid.” Socrates Poisoned again after 25 Centuries (1988). Epilogue. Chapter 29, p. 400. Punta del Este, 15.04.1986 am.
Osho on his stay on Crete
“But that newspaper and others have convinced one bishop here, who is calling meetings of local people to protest against my stay here – and it is only two days that have passed. Last time they allowed me my whole life; only in the end they poisoned me. I don’t think I can last here more than two months at the most.
The bishop is printing a pamphlet against me to distribute. This Sunday morning he is going to speak against me. He knows nothing about me. There has been a protest march yesterday. Phone calls are coming that stones will be thrown at my meetings. That gives me a feeling that certainly I am in Greece, but things have changed for the worse.
The people of Greece may not have learned in twenty-five centuries, but I have learned much. I will slip out of the poisoning. This is the way I want to be introduced to my own country.” Socrates Poisoned again after 25 Centuries (1988). Chapter 5, p. 58. Crete, 21.02.1986 pm.
“J. Krishnamurti died last Monday, in Ojai, California. In the past you have spoken of him as another enlightened being. Would you please comment on his death?
The death of an enlightened being like J. Krishnamurti is nothing to be sad about, it is something to be celebrated with songs and dances. It is a moment of rejoicing.
His death is not a death. His death is only the death of the body. But J. Krishnamurti will go on living in the universal consciousness, forever and forever.” Socrates Poisoned again after 25 Centuries (1988). Chapter 8, p. 113. Crete, 23.02.1986 am.
On Reading and Krishnamurti
“For seven years I have not read anything – no book, no newspapers – and I don’t watch television. My eyes are more precious and I don’t want to destroy them. My eyes are to watch the trees and the stars and the oceans, not stupid programs on television…
I don’t watch any television and I don’t listen to any radio. I live in utter silence and joy and peace. I don’t have to entertain myself. It is for miserable people to look for entertainment; it is for people who want to forget themselves… so they go to the movies, look at television. And I have no interest in what goes on in the world, because it is the same: for centuries the same stupidities have been reported…
No I don’t read any newspapers. If something significant happens – something that my secretary feels is significant and I should be made aware of it – then she brings a cutting. That too I don’t read; she reads it. For example, the death of J. Krishnamurti: she brought the cutting.
I was more shocked by the news than by the death. A man like J. Krishnamurti dies, and the papers don’t have space to devote to that man who for ninety years continuously has been helping humanity to be more intelligent, to be more mature. Nobody has worked so hard and so long. Just a small news article, unnoticeable – and if a politician sneezes it makes headlines.” Socrates Poisoned again after 25 Centuries (1988). Chapter 16, p. 228. Crete, 27.02.1986 am.
“If somebody wants to become a sannyasin, what should he do? And what if he wants to drop out again?
There is no problem. When you fall in love, what do you do? Just fall in love; become a sannyasin – there is no conditions.
And when you want to fall out, there is no need for any divorce. You simply fall out – we say goodbye. We celebrate both the occasions. There are no conditions when you come in. There are no conditions when you leave.
It is your freedom to be part of the movement.
It is your choice not to be part of it.
We respect you and we respect your decisions.” Socrates Poisoned again after 25 Centuries (1988). Chapter 9, p. 127. Crete, 23.02.1986 pm.
Maneesha writes on Marlon Brando’s island that Brando knew of Osho and his lawyer had met up with a sannyasin and through him learned that Osho was looking for e new home. It was then arranged that David, Kaveesha and Avivhava would fly out to the island and see if it was suitable as a home for Osho. As it happened, the atoll proved in reality to have little relation to the idyllic pamphlets they had been shown:
“The central island was below sea level and surrounded by an encrustation of coral, so if, for example, a fifty-foot tidal wave should come up, the new commune would be totally submerged! David, describing the island, reported that the atmosphere was dense, the climate moist and sticky, and the mosquitoes size of birds.” (Forman 2002, p. 69)
(Note: Earlier on Maharishi Mahesh Yogi had been offered the atoll but declined. The Tetiaroa atoll north of Tahiti was bought by Marlon Brando in 1966 to fulfil his dream of an ecological and unpolluted paradise in the Pacific. See also Waltzing with Brando / Bernard Judge (2011) on the building of ‘The Brando’, his luxury resort on an atoll lacking fresh water supply.)
“Marlon Brando is said to have offered a Pacific island he owned to Rajneesh during the World Tour.” (Brooke 1986, p. 161)
“… they had just got back from visiting an island in the Pacific which had been offered as a possible home for Osho. It was Marlon Brando’s island, but proved to be unsuitable as a hurricane had recently flattened it.” (Shunyo 1999, p. 163)
“The same happened in Crete: the chair I was sitting in for almost seven hours…
By and by the chief superintendent relaxed, started talking to me, and finally he said, “I am feeling proud that you are sitting in my office. So many of your people come, and I have seen you only in the picture of their locket. Now I will be able to say to them, “This is the chair your master has been sitting in for seven hours with me.”
He phoned his wife, saying, “I will not come until Bhagwan is safely sent to Athens.” He became so concerned that he allowed Devaraj to drive me to the airport. The police officers were sitting at the back, I was sitting in the front and Devaraj was driving! This would have never happened…” Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 24, p. 211. Punta del Este, 24.04.1986 am.
Mystery school in Delphi
“I wanted to go to Delphi when I was in Greece, because that was the place of the greatest oracle. The very genius of oracles was selected from Delphi. It was one of the most significant mystery schools. But the Greek government would not allow me even to stay overnight.
For no reason at all, they arrested me, and they wanted to force me to go onto a boat for India. I refused. And later on I saw their behavior was changing; they were becoming more polite, more friendly, bringing water or anything needed. Only later on I came to know that our friends in Athens had given a twenty-five-thousand-dollar bribe to the chief of police. Otherwise, they could have forced me onto the boat which was going to India.
And I was telling them, “My jet is standing in Athens. If you allow, it can come here – to Crete. Or I can go by plane to Athens.” Only here I came to know why their behavior had suddenly changed – money is a miracle.” The Transmission of the Lamp. Talks in Uruguay (1989). Chapter 30, p. 285. 10.06.1986 am.
Onwards to Athens
“I then went to Heraklion Airport where Osho was waiting for a flight to Athens. His treatment from the police had improved tremendously since they had received twenty-five thousand dollars.
Osho was sitting in a small room surrounded by armed police and giving an interview to a reporter who was from Penthouse magazine, of all places…
Osho’s last words to the press before leaving Greece were:
“If a single person on a four-week tourist visa can destroy your two-thousand-year-old morality, your religion, then it is not worth preserving. It should be destroyed.”” (Shunyo 1999, pp. 174-75)
Osho on the archbishop of Greece
“In Greece they allowed me a four-week visa, but the archbishop of Greece started making a great noise, sending telegrams to the president and to the prime minister, and writing threatening letters to the owners of the house in which I was staying, saying that if he wants to save his house, I should be thrown out. Because, if I am not thrown out within thirty-six hours, he is going to burn down the whole house with all the people in it; burn them alive. And this is the archbishop of the most ancient Christian church. He represents Jesus Christ!…
But I wonder: they have built up this morality and this religion and this culture over 2,000 years… what kind of culture and what kind of morality is this which can be destroyed in two weeks by an individual man? It does not deserve to exist if it is so week, so impotent.” (Joshi 2010, p. 195)
Ma Amrito on pressure for deportation
“Ma Amrito, the Greek general’s daughter who had arranged for Rajneesh’s special entry into Crete, told me that the real pressure for Rajneesh’s deportation came from Robert Vossler Keeley, the new American ambassador to Greece who had been posted in 1985. The real pressure did not come from the Greek Orthodox Church.
“What is your evidence for this claim?” I asked. “There are numerous sources, from different people placed highly in the government, all indicating the same thing,” Amrito said. “When I asked someone close to the Minister of Economy who was responsible for the arrest, she said, ‘I cannot tell you. I can only say that the order came from very high up.’ It was later confirmed that Ambassador Keeley made a call to someone in national security and ordered the deportation. It was just a call. And the deportation happened the same day.” (Brecher 1993, p. 366)
Osho on Socrates
“Socrates is one of the persons I love the most. And coming here I feel tremendously joyous, because it is the same air Socrates must have breathed, the same land he must have walked, the same people whom he must have talked to, communicated with…
What Socrates was doing twenty-five centuries ago, I am doing now. Twenty five centuries have gone by without any change as far as humanity is concerned. Three times they have tried to kill me… three attempts on my life. In every possible way the same people whom I am trying to make free, trying to take their chains away, are ready to kill me. Humanity has not changed. It will still do the same. But what Socrates was not capable of doing, I am capable of doing. He remained in the very small area of Athens, not even the whole of Greece. Athens was a city-state, and he remained an Athenian for his whole life. I belong to the whole world!” (Joshi 2010, p. 193)
Mistlberger writes on Socrates
“Over the years, Osho frequently mentioned his admiration for Socrates. He tended to cite him as one of the rare examples of a man so dangerous that he was, essentially, killed for his wisdom. According to the records, Socrates was executed in 399 BC at the age of seventy for ‘refusing to recognize the gods recognized by the state, and for corrupting the youth’ with his teachings. Osho often mentioned Socrates in the same breath as Jesus, and he was one of the very few sages that he never criticized…
Socrates’ manner of death is well known; having being condemned to death in a dubious trial, he drank a poison and slowly died. There is arguably some parallel for this in Osho’s life, if only in a mythic sense. In 1987, Osho went public with his belief that he had been (literally) poisoned by the American government when he was briefly incarcerated in an Oklahoma jail in late 1985. Subsequent views on the matter have cast serious doubt on this but the fact remains that, like Socrates, Osho was a deeply defiant man, rebellious, brilliant, and highly critical of established authorities. Like Socrates, he was dangerous in that he also ‘corrupted youth,’ even if such ‘corruption’ was nothing more than trying to pull intelligent minds away from mediocrity.” (Mistlberger 2010, pp. 581,584)
James Gordon interviewing Osho at Heraklion police station
“Bhagwan must have been in the police station an hour or so when James Gordon appeared, wanting to interview him. Gordon was a psychiatrist working for the American government. He had first shown up in Poona, and later, in Rajneeshpuram, wanting to conduct a “study” of Bhagwan and his people. His interview for ‘Penthouse’ had been scheduled for this time, and he didn’t seem to think that the change of venue needed to affect his article. Devaraj remembers Gordon sitting on the floor at Bhagwan’s feet, and Bhagwan’s talking to him for over an hour in response to his questions. Arrested, being forced to leave the country, Bhagwan proceeded to deliver an entire discourse. Gordon described the scene in a book he later wrote.” (Forman 2002, p. 247)
(Note: Gordon’s book is entitled ‘The Golden Guru’ (Gordon 1987).
“The room is ten by fourteen feet and already there are fifteen people jammed into it. Rajneesh is sitting in a chair, flanked on one side by Devaraj and on the other by Anando, a lawyer who is acting as his “secretary.” Reporters are waving their hands and shouting questions in Greek. Mukta, his benefactress in Bombay, his gardener in Poona, is sitting at Rajneesh’s feet, translating. The room is ringed by policemen who are fidgeting with cigarettes they are not allowed to light in the allergic guru’s presence. One is puzzling over an autograph he has solicited from Rajneesh. Outside, the noise of the crowd is louder. More people are coming. There are shouts, laughter, and the first strains of guitar music. Flashbulbs are going off at the window.
Rajneesh is sitting quietly, inclined toward Mukta. He’s wearing a floor-length gray and white silk gown, a diamond-studded watch, and a white hat in which two rings of stones are sparkling. On the table next to him there is a bowl of fruit. I push forward, amazed that I am here, surprised at my temerity, but determined to get my interview. Feeling very much the journalist, I take pictures, color first, then quickly change the film to black and white. I sit down in front of Rajneesh – only the floor is available – and put my tape recorder on the table next to him. I catch Rajneesh’s eye, we nod to each other like a conductor and his concertmaster. The Greek reporters ask one or two more questions and then, as if my wish had made it happen, disappear from the room. We begin the dialogue that two days before he had refused to have with me. Though he is clearly tired, Rajneesh is gracious and calm in the middle of the frenzied activity inside and outside the police station. We talk as if we were in his living room…
The interview, by turns sensitive and outrageous, continues for the next hour…
Later that night Rajneesh arrives at the Athens airport, flanked by Devaraj and Anando. The chief of police of Attica is there with twenty armed men in uniform. He has a warrant signed by Athanasias Tsouras, the alternate minister of public order. Rajneesh is to be expelled for “reasons of public interest,” a proviso most commonly used for Palestinian terrorists. Before heading for the private plane that will take him out of Greece, Rajneesh holds a brief press conference. Forty reporters are shouting in half a dozen languages. The floodlights and flashbulbs are blinding…
After he leaves, Metropolitan Dimitrios orders the churches in Ayios Nikolaos to ring their bells. (Gordon 1987, pp. 219-21)
Video 2. From Osho’s press conference at Athen’s airport en route to Athens.
Satya Vedant on press conference in Athens
“He walked over to a hall where there were some press people. He entered a concrete building and immediately was surrounded by cameras, television and the press reporters.
Osho gave a press conference. It was a very powerful moment. Suddenly that fiery radical from his young days surfaced and lashed out at the government of fascism, of having learnt nothing from the murder of Socrates, of being grossly uncivilised, all the absolutely true things about politicians that every intelligent person knows but hardly ever has the guts to say.
Suddenly the police chief, with his cap pushed down, East German style, stepped in and demanded Osho to put a stop to his criticism against the authorities. Osho turned, his eyes became large. In a voice full of power and authority, Osho said: ‘You be quiet. This is my press conference. Do not interrupt!’ The large, aggressive man could not endure the fury and disappeared into the crowd as if hit by a thunderbolt.” (Joshi 2010, p. 197)
Osho on his passport being stamped
“I was arrested. They did not have any arrest warrant; just the prime minister became afraid that my stay may rock his boat. On the airplane the police officer came to see my passport and he stamped on my passport “deported.” I asked him, “Do you understand law? Are you aware that you are putting a seal of deportation on a man’s passport who has not committed any crime?”
I took his pen and just crossed out his stamp that he had put on my passport. He said, “What are you doing?”
I said, “I am not deported. I am simply leaving – and you sign here!” He became so afraid… I said, “If you don’t sign, then tomorrow in the court you will have to sign. Otherwise, tell me what crime I have committed and give the evidence.”
My passport has become a historical thing! He signed immediately out of fear and stamped again that I was simply leaving Greece, not deported.” Om Shanti Shanti Shanti (1989). Session 13, p. 140.
Reactions from people on Crete
“Just recently I received news from Crete about a few incidents that happened after they arrested me. Eleven old people – fifty to sixty years old – just as I left the house with the police, reached the house and said, “This should not have happened without us. Why did you not inform us? We have our hunting guns, we would have come and shown those police people what it means to misbehave.”
One journalist had asked me, “Any message for the people who live here?”
I said, “Just tell them to reach the airport in the night to show that they are with me – not with the church and not with the government.” There were three thousand people at the airport. They had waited for hours to support me, and to say that what the police had done and what the government had done was not right. Fifty people met one sannyasin; they were immensely angry about what had happened and were asking, “What can we do?” Just poor people, simple people…
Another group of forty people met another sannyasin, and they were asking, “Show us… we want to do something. This thing should not be allowed to happen. And everything that Bhagwan was saying was right, about the church; there was nothing wrong in it.”
These simple villagers understood that what I was saying about the church is true; nothing was wrong in it. And even when I had left Greece, people from Crete sent a delegation to the president saying, “This behavior of the police and the government has disgraced us.”” Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 33, p. 298. Punta del Este, 28.04.1986 pm.
Osho on Andreas Papandreou
“The Prime Minister of Greece, Andreas Papandreou, who was responsible for illegally forcing me to leave Greece, said that it was because my being there was dangerous to the morality of the country. And now he is known to be guilty of adultery, and his wife is suing him because he was unfaithful to her – and this man was talking about morality.” Zen: The Diamond Thunderbolt (1988). Chapter 10, p. 191.
Osho on conditions for staying
“The president of Greece was willing for me to have a commune in Greece, and in fact he wanted it. His reasons were different – that it would bring thousands of tourists and that it would boost the economy. In fact he was the cause that I was allowed a four-week visa for Greece.
But then the condition came in – that if I wanted to stay there and make a commune, I should remember a few things: “The Greek Orthodox church is respected by our constitution; you cannot criticize it. The family is our foundation; you cannot criticize it. Our code of morality; you cannot criticize it. We believe in virginity; you cannot criticize it.”
They certainly believe in virginity, but it is difficult to find a single virgin in the whole of Greece. That’s okay – but you should not criticize it. You can see the political mind: the reality can be tolerated but it should not be exposed. I cannot accept anybody’s conditions.” Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 10, p. 93. Punta del Este, 17.04.1986 am.
Osho on politics
“I consider the present president of Greece as one of the men who is not a politician, but a man in politics. While every government in Europe has been afraid to give me a tourist visa, he invited me to Greece on his own, seeing that what the politicians are doing is a world-wide conspiracy against me. America is creating the whole network of conspiracy against a single man who has no power except his love and his understanding. But they are afraid, more afraid of me than they are afraid of nuclear weapons.
The president of Greece is certainly a man of courage, intelligence. I will not consider him as a politician, just a man in politics; his humanity remains above it. He invited me, and he was simply surprised that all the governments should be behaving in such a cowardly way. Socrates Poisoned again after 25 Centuries (1988). Chapter 21, p. 296. Crete, 01.03.1986 pm.
“For many, this world tour looks like a new beginning. Can you comment on this new phase of your work?
It is a new beginning. It means that now I have enough people in the world and I am making it impossible for nations to let me stay long enough anywhere. I want to be on the road continuously. I am a little lazy, so I need the support of the nations to deport me, not to let me stay anywhere. Naturally I will be moving around the earth, meeting my people more.
And I have my people everywhere. Even if they don’t allow me into the countries, I can meet my people outside the countries, in the airports.” Socrates Poisoned again after 25 Centuries (1988). Chapter 19, p. 261. Crete, 28.02.1986 pm.
References on events in Greece:
‘Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay’ (1988). Chapter 6, A Lot – And Nothing, pp. 47-53. 15.04.1986 am reprinted in ‘Socrates Poisoned again after 25 Centuries’ (1988), in ‘The Epilogue’. Chapter 29, pp. 397-402.
6.5 Passage Denied to Europe
Switzerland, Sweden, England, Ireland
Satya Vedant writes
“For the next two years, Osho again travelled extensively. He left Kathmandu for Thailand. Once in Bangkok, it became impossible to book Osho on a connecting flight. In Germany, his sannyasins were frantically making calls around the world, trying to book him a seat. Whenever his name came up on the computer, the airlines simply refused the request. They finally managed to find a booking clerk on the other side of the world, and juggled the spelling of his name sufficiently for it to go through. Thailand was not a pleasant wait for those travelling with Osho. His routine, however, remained unchanged: sleeping happily, eating a simple meal, and just sitting in the waiting room. The active intercontinental calls eventually confirmed a flight to Abu Dhabi, the nearest spot for him to reconnect with his private jet.” (Joshi 2010, p. 192)
The story goes on
“Being back in India Osho spent a few months in Kulu-Manali in Himachal Pradesh and continued to give discourses to his listeners. On his subsequent World Tour to followers in four continents the message from the United States was heard loud and clear all the way. Whenever his jet had landed, it was soon followed by another jet carrying two U.S. officials with a handcuffed black hard case. It contained official dossiers and press clippings exposing Osho as a hard lined criminal any country had to get rid of. The sooner the better. In Europe Italy, Germany, England, Holland, Switzerland and Greece were officially closed for him; also in Arlanda airport in Stockholm armed police rejected his entry to Sweden.” (Evald 2000, p. 172)
Leaving Athens for Nice in France
“The plane headed towards Nice and landed there in the middle of the night. Negotiations were already on with the French government to secure a place for Osho. However, there was a general apprehension that this was not the place to stop. But where to go? The plane sat quietly on the tarmac while phone calls were made to find out where Osho could next be taken to.
On March 6 1986, it was decided to take Osho to Switzerland. On reaching there and clearing the customs, Osho’s team was granted permission to stay for a week, when suddenly a word reached the custom officers on duty, that the man is persona non grata. So where to now? The German government had already denied Osho the right to land on German soil even to refuel his plane, so Sweden was he next destination. Again, the group barely managed to clear the customs, when all of a sudden armed police arrived. Again the same story. It was communicated that he was ‘a danger to national security’, and was ordered to leave immediately.” (Joshi 2010, p. 198)
Leaving for Nice and Geneva
“Unknown to any of the party then, details of the flight telexed from Athens had reached Madrid, the stated destination. When the plane was somewhere between Corsica and Majorca, the pilots received a communication from the Spanish flight controllers. Their passengers were refused access to Spanish air space.
Hasya, still in conversation with John, sighed. “Oi! What are we going to do?”
“Well, now we’re just flipping coins I would go to Switzerland,” suggested John. “We’ve got no visas, but Switzerland is known to be understanding and have the capacity to deal with problems like this…
It was around five in the morning when the plane touched down at Nice airport. The plane came to a stop and immediately a little jeep with two gendarmes scuttled out onto the tarmac and halted at the bottom of the staircase which had been wheeled over to the plane by an attendant. Devaraj explained in French to the gendarmes that they were stopping just for fuel. The police seemed friendly enough, and within seconds a fuel truck had pulled up…
John got through to Hasya and told her the plane was in Nice for refueling. She and Jayesh had been up all night on the phone trying to mobilize contacts in various governments. They needed time more than anything else. Was it possible for the group to stay in Nice? she asked John. He put his mouth over the receiver and turned to the watching gendarmes. In his improvised French he communicated how many members were in the group on board and their nationalities: Was it possible for them to stay in France for a few days? No, replied one of the gendarmes. He was not unfriendly, simply, “Non, c’est impossible!” John conveyed that back to Hasya and said they would proceed to Geneva as planned. Hasya had contacted Patric who should now be on his way to Sweden where, he said, he had contacts who would facilitate Bhagwan’s access into the country, if by any chance Switzerland fell through. The plane took off from Nice at 6:30 a.m. Already informed that the plane was heading for Geneva, Mr. D. Brandt – chief dispatcher in charge of flight operations for Aeroleasing – was phoning the border police at Geneva airport to see if it were possible to obtain visas for the two Indian passengers on board, along with the others. He was told it was…
The plane touched down at Geneva airport at 7:15 a.m. on Thursday, March 6th. John collected the passports of all the group and made his way into the terminal…
Mr. Brandt took the passports and, true to his word, returned fifteen minutes later having processed the passports with the police. The whole group had visas for a week. John went back to the plane to tell everyone that the visas had been granted and they should prepare to leave the plane. John already had a hotel in mind – “The Intercontinental.” Mr. Brandt asked if he would like transport arranged. Yes, replied John; two Mercedes Benz limousines should be ordered at the airport within twenty minutes. With Swiss efficiency, within fifteen minutes the two limousines arrived and the group prepared to leave the plane. Rafia had already begun to unload the luggage from the plane onto the tarmac. The whole group was exhausted, and elated at the prospect of having somewhere to stay, of having Bhagwan safe in a clean hotel. Just to sit in a bathtub! To sleep!…
Anando, sitting inside the cabin with the others, saw an armed man in uniform framed in the doorway. He walked up the aisle, demanding that everyone’s passports be handed over to him. As with John’s passport, each was stamped, “Annulé.”…
Within five minutes a little jeep had arrived carrying several green-bereted soldiers wielding M16-type carbines, ugly-looking weapons. The plane was suddenly surrounded: the plane’s departure had become a military event…
At exactly twelve midday the plane took off from Geneva airport for Sweden.” (Forman 2002, pp. 254-258)
At Geneva airport
“Bhagwan’s next stop was Geneva, Switzerland, where he and his companions were given seven-day visas on arrival. Five minutes later, before Bhagwan had even left the jet, police with rifles surrounded it, ordered everyone to remain on board, and demanded the passports back. They stamped the visas “annulled,” and ordered the jet to take off immediately. Subsequently, the head of the Department of Justice, Elisabeth Kopp, explained that a judicial decree had been issued just prior to Bhagwan’s arrival, declaring him persona non grata “because of his convictions for immigration offences in the USA.” (Appleton 1987, p. 66)
Banned in person and his books?
“Now there are countries who have decided in their parliaments that I should not be allowed into their country. And they have a certain European parliament…
Just the other day I was informed that now they are considering in the European parliament – which is just a combined body of all the parliaments of Europe – a decision that I should not be allowed even to land my plane at any airport in Europe.
Today they will be doing this in Europe – America has done it already. Tomorrow they will be doing it in Asia, in Australia, in Africa. It is possible, very possible, that if they are so much afraid of me, they will start banning my books. And it may become necessary that my books go without my name, or with any name – like Holy Ghost! The name does not matter. But the message has to reach.” Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 3, p. 28. Punta del Este, 13.04.1986 pm.
To Geneva and then on to Arlanda airport, Sweden
“From Greece we moved to Geneva, just for an overnight rest, and the moment they came to know my name they said, “No way! We cannot allow him into our country.” I was not even allowed to get out of the plane.
We moved to Sweden, thinking that people go on saying that Sweden is far more progressive than any country in Europe or in the world, that Sweden has been giving refuge to many terrorists, revolutionaries, expelled politicians, that it is very generous.
We reached Sweden. We wanted to stay overnight because the pilots were running out of time. They could not go on anymore; otherwise it would become illegal. And we were happy because the man at the airport… we had asked only for an overnight stay, but he gave seven-day visas to everybody. Either he was drunk or just sleepy – it was midnight, past midnight.
The person who had gone for the visas, came back very happy that we had been given seven-day visas; but immediately the police came and canceled the visas, and told us to move immediately: “This man we cannot allow in our country.” They can allow terrorists, they can allow murderers, they can allow mafia people, and they can give them refuge – but they cannot allow me. And I was not asking for refuge or permanent residence, just an overnight stay.” Socrates Poisoned again after 25 Centuries (1988). Epilogue. Chapter 29, p. 400. Punta del Este, 15.04.1986 am.
Arriving at Arlanda airport, Stockholm
“The plane cruised over land covered with snow and generously carpeted with thick green forests. Ten minutes later – at 2:30 p.m. – the plane landed at Arlanda airport, and immediately a big terminal bus came out to meet it. The luggage was loaded unto a trolley and Bhagwan and the rest of the group conveyed to a VIP lounge – beautifully decorated, all the personnel extremely pleasant. It felt civilized, thought Rafia – clean and modern… Ten minutes later the chief of police emerged from the same door that the pilot had disappeared behind. Dressed in a blue uniform with epaulettes and a cap, he approached the group, stood with his hands behind his back, and addressed them in elegant English tinged with a Swedish accent. “He told us” said John, “that we would not be accepted in Sweden; that our passports were not in order – the two Indian members of our party needed visas – and that we had to leave the country immediately. He turned to Bhagwan and said that we were to return to the plane at the earliest possible moment and in the meantime we were not permitted to leave the VIP lounge. By the end of giving us these instructions, his vibe was very very heavy.”…
Immediately, like something out of a movie, John heard the door click into a lock position. Simultaneously a jeep pulled up outside and an army officer walked in wearing a green beret, combat boots and carrying a carbine, and curtly instructed the women at a nearby counter to lock the door through which the group had entered the lounge…
Patric continued, “One of the pilots you left Geneva with was Greek, and when he heard one of the passengers was Bhagwan, he was incensed. He then told the immigration people here what had happened in Greece, and it freaked them out. They don’t need any more problems right now – they are searching for the killer of their prime minister.”…
The whole Swedish fiasco had taken up three to four hours. John remembered that, finally, “We were escorted – Patric was with us now – under military guard, to the plane… which was a hundred feet away! What did they imagine we were going to do? Run? In the rain?” It was 6:30 p.m. when the plane lifted off from Arlanda airport.” (Forman 2002, pp. 262-265)
At Arlanda, Stockholm
“The next stop was around 4 p.m. that day, March 6, at Arlanda airport outside of Stockholm, Sweden. It was almost an exact replay of Geneva. Rajneesh and the sannyasins were on their way out of the airport when they were surrounded again by armed police and ordered to leave by Arlanda police Chief Sven Smedjegarden. They flew out again at 7 p.m. (‘Aftonblatt’, a Stockholm daily, March 8, 1986).” (Brecker 1993, p. 367)
Heathrow airport, London
“Airborne in a chartered jet, Bhagwan’s sannyasins had a problem: where to take him next? They tried Spain, France, Switzerland and Sweden… no one allowed him in. Late that evening, their jet landed at London’s Heathrow Airport and a stop was now mandatory to permit their pilots to sleep. But Bhagwan was not allowed to pass the night in Heathrow’s first-class lounge.
“You don’t have first-class tickets,” stonewalled an official.
So they bought first-class tickets, simply in order to rest in the lounge. But the officials were adamant: the only way Bhagwan and his non-UK disciples could spend the night at Heathrow was in the airport lock-up, behind bars. The order came from senior officials in the Home Office, who presumably had received specific instructions from Downing Street. Margaret Thatcher, arguably Ronald Reagan’s greatest fan, wasn’t about to pass up an opportunity to impress her political ally across the Atlantic.
One of Bhagwan’s male disciples recalls sitting on a bunk bed in jail at Heathrow, feeling completely distraught. Bhagwan smiled at him and said, “When in prison, behave like a prisoner,” then lay down and went to sleep.” (Subhuti 2011, p. 122)
“We turned to London, because it was simply a question of our basic right. And we made it twice legal – we purchased first-class tickets for the next day. Our own jet was there but still we purchased them in case they started saying, “You don’t have tickets for tomorrow, so we won’t allow you to stay in the first-class lounge.”
We purchased tickets for everybody, just so that we could stay in the lounge, and we told them, “We have our own jet – and we also have tickets.” But they came upon a bylaw of the airport that the government or anybody cannot interfere with: “It is at our discretion – and this man we won’t allow in the lounge.”
In the lounge, I thought, how can I destroy their morality, their religion? In the first place I will be sleeping, and by the morning we will be gone. But no, these so-called civilized countries are as primitive and barbarous as you can conceive. They said, “All that we can do is, we can put you in jail for the night.”
And just by chance one of our friends looked into their file. They had all the instructions from the government already about how they were to treat me: I should not be allowed in any way to enter into the country, even for an overnight stay in a hotel or in the lounge; the only way is that I should be kept in jail.” Socrates Poisoned again after 25 Centuries (1988). Epilogue. Chapter 29, p. 401. Punta del Este, 15.04.1986 am.
“In some cases, he was blocked right at the airport. For example, when his private jet landed at Heathrow in London, the pilot had to rest for the night, having flown the maximum number of hours permitted under international law for safely reasons. But Osho and the other passengers were not permitted to rest and wait in the first-class lounge. Instead, he was forced to spend the night in the airport jail.” (Rosciano 2013, p. 250)
“Then they disappeared and came back about half an hour later and said, “There is some bylaw of the airport that we cannot allow you to stay the whole night – a few hours is okay.”
I asked the man, “What do you mean by a few hours? And how do you decide that three hours is enough, or four hours is enough, or twelve hours is enough?” The man disappeared and never came back.
Another man came back, and he said, “You have to understand it, that if you want to wait the whole night you have to wait in the jail. We cannot take the risk of leaving you free in the airport lounge.” And I had to stay in the jail. And in the parliament, the prime minister answered the questions and said that my being there was dangerous for the country, for the country’s safety.” Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 27, p. 243. Punta del Este, 25.04.1986 pm.
Maneesha on events at Heathrow airport, London
“Bhagwan’s plane reached Heathrow, London, at 8.30 p.m. It was, unbelievably, still Thursday, March 6th. In one day, the group had flown from Greece to France, to Switzerland, to Sweden and now to England. Around the world in eighty days? Eighty minutes!… Nirava, an English lawyer, had been contacted earlier by Hasya, and while all this performance was going on he was waiting just feet away, beyond the immigration area. Nirava had bought first-class tickets for the entire group on a commercial flight for Antigua that would leave the following day, and had these sent in to John. If the fact that they were traveling by private plane and intended to leave by the same private jet wasn’t surety enough that they were going to leave, these would serve as additional proof of their plans. But the immigration officials were unimpressed. No, it wasn’t possible to stay in the transit lounge, the group was told. It was closed, in accordance with airport bylaws, so that people could not spend the night there… Four hours later, yet another official came up and announced that the decision had been made – as if there were really any question – that they were not welcome. “I think that at that point, someone actually admitted that whatever was going on was under the direction and with the cooperation of the home office,” recalls John, “because we were saying we wanted access to our lawyer. No, you have no rights to a lawyer, they were told… “Now I’d like to read you a statement,” said the official addressing the group, “and I’ll be happy to read it more than once if you’d like me to.
“You are not welcome in England. Your presence here is seen as a public menace and a threat to the public order, and your immediate departure from this country is requested. During the time you stay here you must stay in the detention area and then you are to depart at the earliest possible time; otherwise you'” – this to Bhagwan – “‘will be sent to Delhi, India, on the flight that leaves tomorrow afternoon.'” Then a statement was given to Bhagwan that was officially called a “Notice of Refusal of Leave to Enter.”…
Almost certainly, though, the statement had been drawn up as soon as the British government heard that Bhagwan’s plane was heading their way – drawn up in the anticipation that he would want to stay in England. The statement read: “You have asked for leave to enter the United Kingdom in transit to Antigua but I have reason to believe that you have been convicted of immigration offences in the U.S.A. In the light of this, your exclusion is conducive to the public good.”
Then there were a further statement, called the “Removal Directions” – as if Bhagwan were a piece of unwanted furniture. It read, “I have given/propose to give directions for your removal at 1600 hrs, on 7 March 1986, by ship/aircraft BA143 to (country/territory) Delhi India.” The sheet was signed by immigration officer, A. Mungham.” (Forman 2002, pp. 266-270)
“The next day the group was prepared to leave again, this time for the Caribbean where it seemed as if Osho would be welcome. Meanwhile at Heathrow, the authorities clearly wanted to put Osho on a regular flight to India that was to depart in the afternoon. With the Indian government denying access to his Western disciples on the one hand, and the rest of the world, on the other hand, willingly or under pressure, refusing Osho himself access to their countries, it seemed a foolproof plan to curtail his voice. There were endless delays with luggage, with the paperwork required to leave, while the British tried to create a flimsy excuse that since Osho had not left the UK, within the stipulated time, he must forcibly be repatriated on the afternoon flight to India…
Finally, on 7 March 1986, with everything worked out, the jet took off, this time for the Caribbean. The first stop was Ireland, and the sleepy airport of Shannon…
The British in the meantime were busy in using Commonwealth ‘diplomacy’ to ensure that whatever welcome the island of Antigua in the Caribbean had in mind for Osho, would be rapidly withdrawn.” (Joshi 2010, p. 200)
Osho talks in June 1988 on events in England
“After two years the British Parliament is still discussing me, and the Home Minister lied just like any politician. He said I was not allowed entry, because I could have destroyed the morality, the religion, the character of the country.
In the first place I never asked for entry into England. How can you deny a man entry who has not asked for it? I has asked only to stay for six hours in the night in the international airport lounge, because my pilot’s time for running the jet was finished. He had to take a rest by law.
From the lounge, in the middle of the night, within six hours, how could I manage to destroy the British character, morality, religion? I had no idea – otherwise I would not have asked about staying even though it was my right – that the British morality, character, religion all live in the lounge of the international airport.
I had not asked for any entry and I will never ask, because Britain is the most barbarous country of this century. They have oppressed almost half the world, raped, murdered, and still they think they have morality, religion, culture. Even if this Home Minister requests me, I am not going to spit on his face in the British Parliament.
I want him to answer to the British Parliament, because he has been deceiving his own country by stating a lie. But the whole business of politicians is lying.” Zen: The Quantum Leap From Mind to No-mind (1988). Chapter 14, p. 242.
Osho on political pressure on Ireland
“Here they have tried hard that I should not be allowed. They have blackmailed this small country, threatened it. And we are looking in other places, but whereever we are looking, as we start looking at any country, immediately American pressure reaches ahead of us – because all our telephones are tapped. You will be surprised that all our telephone calls go through the American Embassy, everything first reaches to the American ambassador. They know where we are searching, where we are going, where our people are working; and immediately, before our people reach there, their pressure on the government of that country reaches there.
Just two days ago in Ireland things were simple. The man whose property we were going to purchase, on the condition that he obtains a permanent residence for the commune…
It is a big, beautiful castle, renovated completely. He was asking too much. We said, “We will give it, but it will be your responsibility, to make the government… all the facilities possible. And he was absolutely sure. He is a duke and has great influence.
But just today the information has come: the American government has pressured the Irish government. Nobody has reached there yet, but the pressure was because the phone call has been detected, tapped. And the duke was surprised. He informed us, “Suddenly the government is afraid.” He has been absolutely certain that there was no problem, the government was willing. Just as a routine procedure, permanent residence would be given within sixty days. But now he is afraid, the pressure is too much.
And the kind of pressure America is putting on countries shows that there is no freedom anywhere. The old kind of political slavery has disappeared; a new kind of economic slavery has taken its place.” The Transmission of the Lamp. Talks in Uruguay (1989). Chapter 25, p. 238. 07.06.1986 pm.
Osho on Ireland, Spain and Uruguay
“I have been in Ireland. Perhaps the man at the airport had drunk too much beer so he simply… we simply wanted one day’s stay to give a rest to the pilots – he gave us seven days. He did not bother who we were, what the purpose was. He must have been really drunk.
We reached a hotel, and in the morning the police came, asked for the passports, and canceled those seven days. And we said, “We will make an immediate exposure to the world news media. You have given us seven days, and you have canceled them without giving any reason. None of our people has gone out of the hotel; they have not committed any crime. You cannot do this.”
They were afraid, because they were caught in a dilemma. They had given seven days; now they had canceled them, and they didn’t have any reason to show why. So they said, “You can stay as long as you want, but don’t go outside the hotel.”
“But,” I said, “that will be illegal because we will not have any visa.” They said, “Nobody will be bothered by it; you just remain in the hotel.” We remained there for fifteen days because we needed some time. Our people were working in Spain and the Spanish government was willing to give me permanent residence.
And what happened in Uruguay happened in Spain, exactly the same pattern; they agreed, and immediately, within one hour, they said, “No, it is not possible.” We never came to know exactly what happened – but now we know.
Here in Uruguay, because it is a small country, everybody knows everybody else; and we had made contact with all the political parties, all the ministers – who were all favorable except one man, the foreign minister. Seeing that everybody was favorable, he also voted in favor. He was functioning as an American agent – to create a situation that I should not be given permanent residence – so that America could appear to have nothing to do with it. He had his own price, and the price was to be that America was going to choose him as secretary-general of the U.N. That was the price. I’m sorry for the poor man. He lost his reward because he voted for me – seeing that everybody was favorable.
Now we know what would have happened in Spain: the same story. For one month they were continuously saying, “Everything is ready, just a signature has to happen.” So we just wanted time: if Spain was ready, we could move from Ireland to Spain. We stayed in Ireland for fifteen days without any visa.
We left Ireland; and the day we left, in the parliament of Ireland the minister concerned, the minister of the interior, informed the members that we have never been in Ireland. One can see how politicians can be hypocrites, how they can manage ugly lies. And this is such a lie – because we can prove that we were in the hotel. When we were leaving the hotel the press was present and photographers were present. They took photographs of us in front of the hotel and they took my statement. And the hotel is fifteen miles away from the airport.
But the minister deceived the parliament and deceived the country. And perhaps… he must have forced the journalists not to publish my statement and not to publish the pictures; otherwise I don’t see how he could have managed it. And these are all civilized countries, cultured people, educated people – and flatly lying, that I had never been in Ireland. And he knew, his government knew, the chief of police knew.” The Path of the Mystic. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 39, p. 405. Punta del Este, 23.05.1986 pm.
Anando writes on Antigua
“Meanwhile, Bhagwan was running out of countries. Canada still would not budge. Bhagwan’s plane could not land there even with a bond from Lloyd’s of London guaranteeing that he would not set foot on the tarmac. The delay had lost Bhagwan his destination of Antigua. While he had been flying around Europe on March 6th, a deal had been quietly struck with that Caribbean Island for him to go there. UK immigration officials learnt of this in their interrogation at Heathrow that night. The next morning the UK government sent diplomatic telexes to several Caribbean countries in the Commonwealth, including Antigua, advising that they not allow Bhagwan to enter. Antigua cancelled the deal, and on March 15 and 16, AP and UPI international wire services carried press statements from the Antigua Foreign Minister, and its Officer in Charge of Immigration, saying that Bhagwan would not be allowed to land there, and that there had never been any question that he could.” (Appleton 1987, p. 69)
Maneesha on leaving Heathrow for Shannon in Ireland
“For her part, on arriving at the hotel the evening before, Anando had immediately called Hasya to tell her what was happening and discuss what should be done next. The security man Hasya had consulted with in London was confident that Antigua would not present any hassles for Bhagwan and the sannyasins with him. He would personally accompany them there from England. Hasya had also rung air charter companies for a plane to fly them out the next day…
It must have been midday when John received confirmation that a plane would be arriving to convey them onwards. It was something of a race with the clock. The plane was due in at 2:30 p.m.; if Bhagwan were not on a flight out of the country within the following hour, he would be put on a British Airways flight that left at 4:00 p.m… It was just fifty minutes before the deadline of the time they’d been given for departure, around 3:10 p.m. on Friday, March 7th, when the G2 lifted off from Heathrow, bound for Antigua, first stop: Ireland…
The aircraft landed, Ronald collected the passports and returned to the plane shortly afterwards. All seven of the group had ninety-day visas. With the experience of Switzerland and Sweden still very present in everyone’s minds, this time there was no waiting around for limousines. An airport bus conveyed Bhagwan and the others to the terminal, and from there, taxis were ordered and within half an hour of landing the group had booked into the Drurys Hotel in Limerick. The hotel had three or four wings. At Ronald’s suggestion one entire wing, in the most private part of the hotel, was allocated to Bhagwan and the group to ensure extra security…
It must have been all of seven in the morning the following day, Saturday, March 8th, when some customs officials appeared at the hotel. There had been a mistake, they informed John; all the visas had to be canceled. At their insistence, the passports were all collected and officially canceled. But as the group was in the country, and flight clearance to Antigua was still not confirmed, they would be allowed to stay until ongoing plans had been settled…
Antigua, then, was out of the picture. Even if Canada had not been obstructive Antigua would have been canceled as a possibility. Ronald later discovered that on the morning of March 7th, the British government had sent diplomatic telexes to several Caribbean countries in the Commonwealth, warning them that Bhagwan might try to enter their country. As a result, Antigua declared its doors closed to Bhagwan.” (Forman 2002, pp. 274-281)
Heading: Bhagwan gets three month entry permit
“Limerick, March 15 (AP)
Acharya Rajneesh, expelled from Greece and barred from Britain, has a three-month entry permit for Ireland, the Justice Department has said.
Rajneesh Bhagwan and eight disciples took over a whole floor of Jury’s Hotel in Limerick on March 7, according to Hotel staff. Asked whether he was still at the Hotel, staff members would only say that some members of the entourage were still there.
Shannon police and the Staterun television report the Bhagwan is still in Ireland. The police said they would be informed if he had left.
The Justice Department said he was issued a three-month permit on admission to the country at Shannon Airport, where he arrived by a private jet. Irish Immigration sources said Bhagwan Rajneesh had indicated, he was planning to fly to Antigua when weather conditions are suitable. But the Government of the Caribbean Nation of Antigua and Bermuda says, “He is not welcome there and will be denied entry.” (The Rajneesh Times (India), 1986:8)
Osho on events in Ireland
“In the morning we moved to Ireland. Perhaps the man did not take note of my name amongst the passengers. We had asked just to stay for two or three days – “at the most seven, if you can give us.” We wanted time because some other decision was being made, and they were delaying it, and our movement was dependent on that decision.
The man was really generous… must have taken too much beer: he gave everybody twenty-one days. We moved to the hotel and immediately the police arrived at the hotel to cancel them saying, ” That man is mad – he does not know anything.
They canceled the visas, but they were in a difficult situation – what to do with us? We were already in the land, we were in the hotel; we had passed a few hours in the hotel. They had given us twenty-one days on the passports, and now they had canceled them. We were not ready to go; we had to wait still a few days.
You can see how bureaucracy covers its own errors. They said, “You can stay here, but nobody should come to know about it – no press, nobody should come to know that Bhagwan is here because then we will be in trouble. And of course we cannot do anything because that will stir up problems immediately.
“If you don’t want to go – and we have given you twenty-one days’ permission… On what grounds are we canceling? You have not done anything – you have only slept the night here. Unless sleeping is a crime… So we are in a difficulty. The only way is, you remain silent and absolutely hidden.”
Now, it was absolutely illegal to stay without a visa; and the police were suggesting to us to remain silent so that nobody knows it, and leave silently. And they were keeping the press away; they were giving them false clues so they were looking in some different places.
But the strange thing is that these people are in direct communication with the government. The question was raised in the parliament, “What happened? Their jet is still standing at the airport. They have entered the country – where have they disappeared to?” And the minister simply lied, saying, “They had come… and they have left.” We were in the country, and the parliament is told that we have left the country.
This whole journey has been an exposure of the bureaucracies.” Socrates Poisoned again after 25 Centuries (1988). Epilogue. Chapter 29, p. 401. Punta del Este, 15.04.1986 am.
Staying in Limerick, Ireland
“In spite of the group keeping a low profile, within a few days the international media had located Bhagwan’s trail and reports abounded about his staying in the Drurys Hotel, guarded by security men and with his entourage – three people, according to one article, occupying a total of twenty_-four rooms!…
The local police were in constant, almost daily contact with Joe, and told him several times that the IRA was making threats on Bhagwan’s life. One way and another, Irish eyes weren’t smiling too warmly by now…
In addition, the mayor of Limerick had sent a request to Bhagwan that he at least come out for the traditional St. Patrick’s Day parade! He wanted Bhagwan to sit beside him in his car – the mayor and the master – to drive through the streets of Limerick. Needless to say, Bhagwan declined.” (Forman 2002, pp. 284-286)
Onwards from Ireland
“Sannyasins in various parts of the world, at that time, were working hard to find a place for Osho, each labouring under the illusion that at least their country would not be as rotten as others, that their politicians are not as corrupt as the others. The Italian sannyasins had been campaigning, the Spanish were trying, the Dutch and the Swedes were also trying. It was a glorious lesson for all the lovers and friends of Osho around the world. Each in turn reached the same point of discovery: there is so much ugliness and corruption in the world of today. It was a living experience for them of everything that Osho had been trying to show for decades. Now they had a first-hand knowledge of it…
Canada had by then refused permission for Osho’s plane to land at Gander for refuelling on the intended flight to Antigua in the Caribbean. This extraordinary denial of the right to refuel was made despite a bond from Lloyds of London against the guarantee that Osho would not step outside the plane. So, on the condition that there should be no publicity that might embarrass the authorities, he was allowed to remain in Ireland until other arrangements could be made. During the wait, Antigua withdrew permission for Osho to go there. Holland, when asked, also refused Osho. Germany had already passed a ‘preventive decree’ that denied Osho an entry to their country. In Italy, his tourist visa application remained stalled.
On 19 March 1986, a tenuous departure to Spain was worked out and the party prepared to leave Ireland. But the doubt whether they would be allowed to stay there hovered over them. It was not certain till the last moment. As they were ready to depart, an official from the Uruguayan embassy came on board and provided Osho an entry visa to that country. A brief stop in Dakar, Senegal, only added to the sense of universal isolation and alienation from a world Osho’s travelling companions would never otherwise experience. Bribes had to be paid to get through customs, and then on to nearby hotel.
Throughout this whole period, Osho was like a young man on a adventure holiday. He continued to eat his simple meals, sleep each afternoon, talk to his secretary, and sit in his chair. While everyone around him was going crazy trying to save what was clearly a desperate situation, Osho sent off people to find out more about a beautiful castle in Ireland that might be for sale.” (Joshi 2010, p. 202)
Flying to South America
“Bhagwan, having no other choice, agreed to fly from Ireland to Uruguay via Africa. It was stranger than it sounds… the plane we were flying in was not legally cleared to fly the incredible distance from Senegal, Africa to Recife, Brazil in South America. Under international law the flight was “illegal” because if either of the two huge jet engines have a system failure the plane cannot reach its destination – or go back – it simply crashes into the sea.
This regulation had never been waived in the history of international air control rules. But for Bhagwan? No problem; no one cared. The waiver was immediately granted. It was dangerous, but the pilots agreed and Bhagwan agreed. Because Canada had refused, under United States pressure, to allow Bhagwan to land on their soil even to fuel the plane He was riding in, we were forced to drop down into Africa and cross the Atlantic at one of its widest points.” Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Introduction.
“After being deported from the USA, he flew back to India and lived for a few weeks in Kulu-Manali in the Himalayas. But a power struggle led by some of his Indian sannyasins resulted in all the foreign members of his personal staff – his caretaker, doctor, etc. – being refused extensions for their visas, so he left Kulu and joined them in Kathmandu, Nepal. King Birendra was an admirer of Osho, but came under pressure from the American Government and so politely asked him to move on.
Osho then travelled to Greece, Sweden, England and Ireland, but no one would let him stay more than a few days. Other countries like Holland and Germany were already announcing, even before being asked, that they would not admit him. Finally, a visa came through from Uruguay, and he managed to stay there three months. But, just as he was about to be given full resident status, some heavy economic arm-twisting by the Reagan Administration forced the Uruguayan government to cancel his application and deport him. He flew to Jamaica, then on to Portugal and then, with no place left to go, back to his native India, landing in Mumbai. The whole journey took about six months, with twenty-one countries refusing him entry”. (Radha 2005, p.167)
Osho’s health in Ireland
“Devaraj was concerned about Bhagwan’s health. The upheaval of so much traveling, with the endless harassment – including imprisonment – were having their effect. In spite of Devaraj’s attempts to find food for him that might be palatable, Bhagwan’s appetite was poor, and his sleep nonexistent.
“There was a tingling problem in his extremities,” said Devaraj later, “and the bone pain in his upper limbs was becoming more marked. Medically, his visit to Ireland was especially ominous for the onset of problems with his balance. Signs and symptoms related to damage to his spinal column emerged, making steady walking impossible. One day Vivek accompanied him out of his room with the thought of his taking a walk down the corridor. But he was simply unable to. It seemed the intricate pattern on the carpet made him dizzy. The next thing we knew was that a couple of the security guys took it on themselves to go out and purchase a whole new roll of carpet! They unrolled the entire corridor-length of plain green carpet, and so Bhagwan tried to walk again – but he just couldn’t do it.” (Forman 2002, p. 283)
Osho speaking on Jayesh in April 1987
“Jayesh is asleep; he came late in the night. He had been thinking for years to come to me, to sit silently, to relax, and to meditate. And the day he reached the commune [in Oregon] I was arrested – and he was arrested with me. Since then, for eighteen months he has not been able to sit silently for a single moment. We have been moving around the world, being thrown out from one country to another country, and he says, “My God! Before I came to you, I had time at least to sit silently, and I had come to meditate.” He had to live with me in the jail… but he’s not bored; he’s enjoying the whole trip.” The Golden Future (1988). Session 35, p. 341.
Leaving Ireland en route to Uruguay
“Bhagwan’s continued presence in Ireland was raising questions in its parliament. This, plus the threats the police reported to Joe, made it clear that if Bhagwan remained there much longer he could be in danger…
Hasya had rung John in Ireland on Monday evening, as soon as things had been agreed on with Neneta, and said that, with the Spanish visa not having come through, the plan now was that Bhagwan could be taken to Uruguay, calling in to Spain on the way to collect his visa. The plane in which the group had flown from London ten days before was still sitting at Shannon airport… Bhagwan left Ireland on Tuesday, March 18th. The entire kitchen staff, who had prepared all his food and drinks throughout his stay, and the waiters from the hotel lined the corridor as Bhagwan slowly walked from his room past the lobby and outside. “It was just like when a lord leaves the manor!” commented Anando…
The plane eventually lifted off from Ireland around midday, bound for Barajas airport, Madrid…
The plane bearing Bhagwan taxied in from the runway at Barajas airport, and slowly came to a halt…
Meanwhile, Hasya and the others, along with Cesar Ferrer, the first secretary of the Uruguayan counsel, were in the transit lounge. Minutes before Bhagwan landed a telex was delivered to the “guardia civil” – the airport police. Sargam was able to read the telex from where it lay on the desk. It was from the ministry of the interior, Jose Barrionuevo, and it stated that Bhagwan was not to come into the transit lounge; he could not get out of the plane. “Se prohibe la entrada en España a Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh” – Bhagwan was denied entry to the country.
However, Sargam asked Ferrer if he would go out to the plane instead, and stamp Bhagwan’s visa there. Ferrer agreed, and having received permission to do so from the airport police, Ferrer boarded the plane. Stamping Bhagwan’s, Mukti’s and Anando’s passports with visas – none of the others needed them – took all of two minutes, and then Ferrer left. Later it was learned that for his kindness he was suspended from his work… It was the middle of the night on Tuesday, March 18th, when the plane landed at Dacca in Senegal, West Africa…
Dacca was hot and steamy, and everyone was exhausted. It had been arranged that someone representing the charter company would be there to meet them, and sure enough, as the group descended from the plane, waiting on the tarmac was a guy who assured them everything would be fine, took their passports and was promptly swallowed up onto the night…
In taxis about as comfortable as rickshaws without springs, the group was conveyed through dimly lit shanty towns to the Club Mediterranean, supposedly the smartest hotel in Senegal. It was a large hotel by the ocean, within sight of other hotels that were all seemingly new, all not very well made…
By mid-morning the group was ready to leave the hotel. In the daylight one could see a little more of the surroundings and the drive was through the city, to the outskirts. Curiously, the place was not teeming with people, as in India, nor was there the same squalid poverty, Rafia noted. Mostly it seemed to be only men in the streets – poor black people in Western clothes for the most part, a few guys in the traditional long flowing gowns or jhabblas. By midday Bhagwan and the group were back in their plane, and headed for Brazil…
Unknown to the group, on the very same day – March 19th – the European Parliament considered a resolution banning Bhagwan from settling in any member state. Bhagwan’s plane stopped in Reclife, Brazil, for refueling, and then was off again…
Rio de Janeiro was the next stop, again for refueling, in the middle of a raging storm as it happened. From there, the plane set off on the last lap of the journey – headed for Montevideo, Uruguay…
The plane finally arrived at Carrasco airport in Montevideo in the early hours of Thursday, March 20th, 1986.” (Forman 2002, p. 314-323)
6.6 Talks in Punta del Este, Uruguay
All discourse series from Uruguay are presented in Volume III / Bibliography / World Tour, where bibliographic data as well as excerpts from introductions and opening discourses are to be found.
Arriving in Uruguay
“The “Hosteria Del Largo” was a pleasant hotel, and again, as in Ireland, Bhagwan remained in his suite for the entire time. What he saw of the country and the people, Rafia liked immensely. He had known little about Uruguay, imagining it to be poverty-stricken, third-worldish, with unpaved roads lined by shacks. But in reality it was just like being in Europe. People seemed affluent, confident, industrious. Buildings were large and modern, shops stocked with all the luxuries one could want. Within a week or so a house had been found for Bhagwan so he and the group moved in. It was at the seaside resort of Punta del Este, a drive of eighty-five kilometers from Montevideo. Punta del Este is a super rich enclave and is known as the “Sweden of South America.” It is where all important conferences are held, basically a north-versus-south dialogue where delegates from many countries meet…
Through Inglesias, Bhagwan had been given a temporary resident’s visa which was en route to a permanent one. It guaranteed his stay in Uruguay for a year. The only way the visa could be revoked legally was if one did not have the finances to stay in the country or had an Interpol record – neither of which applied in the case of Bhagwan…
One [house] we were approaching was particularly elegant. It was two-storied, somewhat Alpine looking, with whitewashed walls and dark wooden doors and shutters. A large U-shaped driveway in front was set in the middle of a sloping well-kept lawn. Passing round the back of the house I could see it had a swimming pool and a tennis court set amid a huge back lawn lavishly sprinkled with elegant trees, and shrubs plump with health – white hydrangeas and red hibiscus among them. A second later, the car had slowed down and was turning into the back driveway of the house…
The house, “Santa Dominica” as it was called, was huge. It was in fact two houses that belonged to two brothers whose families would holiday in it together each summer. So there were two kitchens, two livingrooms, two diningrooms, and so on – perfect for our set-up. It took several of us to clean it daily, others to drive into Punta to buy groceries for Bhagwan’s meals, and ours, and others to prepare and cook the food for us.” (Forman 2002, pp. 326-329,342)
Satya Vedant writes
“After the long haul across the Atlantic, Osho’s plane landed at Reclife, a seaport in North East Brazil. The authorities immediately wanted to spray the plane, which meant exposing Osho to chemical fumes. With his sensitivity to asthma and his current poor health, the group tried to prevent the spraying…
Finally, he arrived in Montevideo, Uruguay. A friend was already present to help everyone through customs. Soon Osho was moved into a beautiful house in Punta del Este, a famous beach resort town for rich Argentineans. Almost immediately he started giving discourses. For next three months, he talked twice daily to about twenty people. These discourses hold an extraordinary reflection of the whole situation…
But as the Uruguay round of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) talks were getting under way in the same town of Punta del Este, the US pulled out all the stops: either Osho goes or the country’s loans would be revoked. During those final days in Uruguay, the police kept watching from a discreet distance. By now the group travelling with him was used to the life of ultimate outcast.” (Joshi 2010, p. 203)
Start of discourses
“On April 11th, Vivek announced that Bhagwan was ready to give discourses again…
Everyone was elated with the news about discourse recommencing, and Devaraj and I were especially excited. I stopped the housework I had been doing, and began, with Devaraj, to arrange a workspace for our equipment and papers. Others of us spent time preparing the livingroom in which the discourses would be given. Bhagwan’s chair was placed with its back to a window which, when the curtains were drawn back, looked out over the seas. We would sit directly in front of him. Nishkriya set up his video equipment and arranged the placing of the microphone, the lights, and so on.
Again, Devaraj and I would need to collect and keep up a flow of questions from everyone to submit to Bhagwan for discourse – and he was going to speak twice a day as he had done in Nepal and Greece, bur this time all the discourses would be in answer to our questions. That amounted to a lot of questions from a small group of sannyasins.
The following evening, April 12th, 1986, Bhagwan gave his first discourse in Uruguay. Bhagwan had looked over the questions that afternoon, chosen some and then left it to me to decide the order.” (Forman 2002, p. 331)
Speaking again in Punta del Este
“When He finally reached Uruguay I often wondered if He would ever speak again. After treatment like that, why would He? And yet, He did. Suddenly, after we spent several weeks in Uruguay working out the details for a possible residency, Bhagwan said He was ready to talk again.
Television and audio equipment was flown in from Europe, a room in the elegant home where Bhagwan was staying was prepared, lightning equipment was tested, and videotapes were air-shipped from America.
Each day Bhagwan sat peacefully by the side of the swimming pool, wearing large gold Cazal sunglasses, unmoving, except for His almost imperceptible breathing and His occasional slow glance at the brilliant green parrots which perched near Him in the eucalyptus trees. The Atlantic Ocean thundered against the sand bunkers of Punta del Este’s legendary beach just a few hundred feet away…
I realized that Bhagwan had never spoken to so few about so much since perhaps His earliest days, just after it became known that He was enlightened…
These discourses, the first which Bhagwan spoke after his arrest in Crete, Greece, are among the “hidden jewels” of sannyas. They were delivered to a very small group of intimate disciples and, as such, are unique, unequalled, historic – and almost unknown.
The were delivered in Punta del Este, the chick, gambling and recreational mecca of South America, after Bhagwan had been refused even two-week visas in those European countries which pride themselves most for their love of freedom, liberty, free speech, and their so-called democracies.” (Sw Dhyan Yogi. Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Introduction)
Discourses in Uruguay
“These talks are to His beloveds, His intimates, His “family,” as He used the word. And because of it, perhaps, the feel of these discourses is different. And He introduced and emphasized new dimensions to His work, aspects of His very transmission of wisdom and light.
He spoke in detail of the seven layers of man’s consciousness, and how the disciple must meet them, explore them, expose them. He introduced His vision of hypnotic techniques for entering and opening the vast unconscious mind and its volcanic energies. He told us how to do it and when to do it.
He described hidden techniques for self-discovery, spoke of His true relationship with His disciples… and defined what it means to be a “friend” of the Master.
There is nothing like it. It is a striking vertical leap in His guidance, directed to the meditator, the sincere and earnest seeker, the authentic disciple. The three volumes in this series – of which this book is the first one – point the way to the future of mankind, the possibilities and the promise, seen through the eyes of the Living Master, Bhagwan.” (Sw Dhyan Yogi. Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Introduction)
Shunyo on discourses
“Osho started giving discourses twice a day. He would come down the winding staircase, cross the shining red-tiled floor, hands in namaste, and enter the beautiful open sitting room where there was room for about forty people to sit. His talks were much different here, as it was a very intimate situation and He spoke quietly and slowly. He no longer spoke with the fire with which He had delivered his talks at Rajneeshpuram and in Poona. Finding questions to ask was a great “cleansing of the unconscious,” as Osho said; sometimes He would answer five or six questions in one sitting and He did not always accept the questions we asked. Maneesha had quite a job collecting questions from us, because it is not always easy to find a question when the last one you asked maybe got you a zen stick for an answer.” (Shunyo 1991, p. 119)
Maneesha on discourses
“It was an extraordinary time to be with Bhagwan. Long afterwards, Bhagwan would say that the discourses in Uruguay – which were later compiled into three books, ‘Beyond Psychology’, ‘The Path of the Mystic’, and ‘The Transmission of the Lamp’ – had been “very special.” He told Neelam, who had taken care of him in Kulu-Manali and would again later on, that in Uruguay, because there was only a limited number of people coming regularly to the discourses, the talks could evolve day by day. As he saw we had understood what he was saying, he could speak further on that particular theme. This was why he liked certain people always sitting in the first rows of discourse, he told Neelam – people who had been listening to him speak for many years, who were interested in what he was saying and could intelligently absorb it. New people brought with them an energy, a feeling, of not yet comprehending him, and that was not helpful to his talking.
“I am not an orator,” he said to Neelam. “I don’t have a written message to give to you. As I see you are understanding me, so my words change.” With Bhagwan’s talking frequently about hypnosis and levels of consciousness and so on, I had begun to notice that in discourse I felt as if I were experiencing a mixture of hypnosis and meditation…
In discourse after discourse we were treated to the most amazing moments I had yet spent with Bhagwan…
We were like a secret society of Sufis, or, more aptly perhaps, Tantrikas. They had had to hide in forests to meditate because society was so against them, Bhagwan was to tell us in one discourse. That was why their teaching was called “the whispered transmission.”
For two hours we sat with our master and were led into a whole other world, so different from that which surrounded us. Or at night, as the dusk settled, again, questions in hand I would join the others as we quietly found our seats in the livingroom, closed our eyes and waited for Bhagwan’s soft footfall as he descended the steps from his room behind us.” (Forman 2002, p. 337)
Music played at discourses
“Milarepa found himself a guitar, and Nivedano some drums, and from then on, the two of them played music as Bhagwan entered and left each discourse. In later years [in Poona II], Nivedano would become well known for the part he, and his drums, played in discourse, as his drumbeat would announce the commencement of each stage of the meditation that followed directly after Bhagwan’s talk. In addition, he was to construct a stunning waterfall in the garden of Bhagwan’s house.” (Forman 2002, p. 341)
Talking on the issue of sex
Why is it that in spite of the vast range of subjects that You cover in Your talks – perhaps a wider range than any man who has ever lived – whenever I discuss You with press and any other interested parties, they seem preoccupied with only one subject: sex?
I am reminded of Doctor Jobson. He had made one of the best dictionaries of his times. It was a very big, voluminous book – more than one thousand pages. Three old ladies came to him, very angry; they must have been seventy, seventy-five, eighty, they all had glasses. and they said, “Are you not ashamed of your book? There are three words in it which are obscene!”
Doctor Johnson said, “My God, in a book of one thousand pages, in which there are thousands of words, how could you manage at your age, with such thick glasses, to find three obscene words? You are great researchers. You must have been looking for them. Nobody else has objected to me; nobody has even mentioned them.”
I have almost four hundred books in my name. I have not written anything, but these are a collection of my talks. Out of four hundred books there are only one book on sex, and that too is not really on sex; it is basically on how to transcend sex, how to bring the energy of sex to a sublimated state, because it is our basic energy…
The name of the book is ‘From Sex to Superconsciousness’ – but nobody talks about superconsciousness. The book is about superconsciousness; sex is only in the beginning, where everybody is. There are methods that can start the energy moving upwards, and in the East, for at least ten thousand years, there has developed a special science, Tantra. There is no parallel in the West of such a science.” Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 39, p. 362. Punta del Este, 01.05.1986 pm.
(Note: Osho is referring to ‘Hobson-Jobson. The Definitive Glossary of British India’ / Henry Yule & A.C. Burnell (1886). Hobson-Jobson is not a personal name but with its distorted, anglicized version of the mourning cries of ‘Ya Hassan! Ya Hosain!’ refers to a communal Shia religious celebration).
“These questions and answers are really just a game to help you to get rid of words, thoughts. Slowly, slowly you are finding it more and more difficult: what to ask?
Just last night Maneesha was worried, “If questions are finished and you start leaving because there is no question, I will shout ‘Bhagwan, I have found a question! Wait!'”
No, I will not leave. I am waiting for that moment when no questions is left within you; then my real work will begin. Right now we are just sitting outside the school. Once you are silent, utterly silent, then there is no need to ask anything; there is nothing to ask, there is nothing to answer.
Silence is the question. Silence is the answer. Silence is the ultimate truth.
In silence we meet with existence – words, languages, all create barriers. And to be silent means to be a hollow bamboo. And the miracle is, the moment you are a hollow bamboo, a music descends through you which is not your own. It comes through you; it belongs to the whole. Its beauty is tremendous, its ecstasy immeasurable. These meetings are just a preparation for that music to descend in you.
But you can make a flute only of a hollow bamboo. If you are full of your thoughts and ego and philosophy, religion, theology and politics – all kinds of rubbish – then that music is not for you.
And to me, that music is the ultimate experience, the last benediction, the highest flowering of your consciousness.” The Transmission of the Lamp. Talks in Uruguay (1989). Chapter 26, p. 249. Punta del Este. 08.06.1986 am.
Maneesha on questions
“For me, making up questions came surprisingly – even alarmingly – easily. Some were certainly related directly to me and my experiences, but many just popped up out of the blue, sometimes five in a row. Geeta kindly said that I had psychic antennae and was picking up everybody’s questions; less esoterically inclined, I thought the rapidity at which I could produce questions only indicated an exceeding inquisitive and noisy interiority.
For others of us, this was the first time they had needed to try and formulate a question, and the question came out of much internal writhing about, or tussling with an experience that resisted being put into words. But Bhagwan had said even the effort to make a question was significant; that asking questions facilitated the clearing out of the unconscious. In addition, we were so few in number, the vast majority of our fellow sannyasins were not able to be with him, so we needed to think of them and to ask questions for them as well as for ourselves.” (Forman 2002, p. 340)
On Mohammed and the Koran, never to be spoken of while in India
“Mohammed says, “I am the last messenger of God. Now there will be no other messenger. And the Koran is the last message. After the Koran there will be no other holy book.”
He is not aware that he cannot stop existence with his own death. Many prophets have come and gone.
They have added to the beauty of existence, but nobody should be so arrogant as to say, “I am the last.”…
Fever is only the case with Mohammed. Truth does not bring fever, truth is not a disease. My own explanation is that he was suffering from fever, and he heard in his fever that God was speaking to him. And the proof is that the Koran is the most third-rate book in the world; it can be only out of a mediocre mind, and in fever. In the Koran there is nothing that is elevating. It is very difficult. I have tried many times – because I have been speaking on all the scriptures of the world, and Mohammedans wanted me to speak on the Koran. And so many times, in so many places, Mohammedans presented me with beautiful copies on the Koran, asking me when I was going to speak on it.
I tried to read it again and again to find something that I can speak upon, but it is so full of rubbish that I could not manage to find even a few places on which I can elaborate and give some insight into human nature. The book is an absolute proof that it has come out of a feverish mind, and very mediocre…
Mohammedans have invaded people, forced people at the point of sword to become Mohammedans because there is no other religion which can save you. And the Koran is the only book on which there is no commentary, because no commentary is needed, it is the last words of God. The commentary may put in his own ideas – you have to read it directly. And in fact no commentary is possible because there is nothing to comment upon…
But this has been the attitude of the Mohammedans. They destroyed the library in Alexandria. They destroyed in India immensely beautiful sculpture because Mohammedanism does not believe in images. Although it is not right, because they go to the Kaaba to worship a stone. What does it matter if the stone is a stone or a statue? They are stone worshippers.
In India there were millions of beautiful statues of Buddha, Mahavira, other mystics – they have destroyed all of them. Somebody’s head is missing, somebody’s hands are missing. They spoiled thousands of temples, temples which were built in hundreds of years.” The Transmission of the Lamp. Talks in Uruguay (1989). Chapter 23&32, pp. 216,304,309. Punta del Este. 06&11.06.1986 pm.
Talks in Uruguay
“I am not a thinker. I am not a philosopher. I am not a man of words. Although I have used words more than anybody else ever in the history of man, still, I am not a man of words.
The words are only indicators towards silence.
I speak so that you can learn how not to speak.
I say things to you so that you can be able to be silent.
It is a very contradictory job.
But I have enjoyed it, I have loved it, and I have found people who have understood the basic contradiction but are not bothered by the contradiction. They have thrown away words and taken the content deep within themselves.
The words are only containers.
The content is silence.”
The Path of the Mystic. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 39, p. 409. Punta del Este, 23.05.1986 pm.
Maneesha recalls a new discourse format
“One day soon after discourse began, I was told Bhagwan would like to see me. Vivek showed Anando and me into his room, and then, I don’t remember how he began, but Bhagwan said to me that “soon” we would start discourses of a slightly different kind. I would compose a question, and as Bhagwan was responding, the group of us listening could jot down any questions that occurred as he spoke, and hand them to me. I would then select one and ask that to Bhagwan.
The others were excited when they heard the news. It was felt the discourses would become more like dialogues in the Socratic mode. Of course I was tremendously thrilled too, and a bit nervous. It meant the structure of the discourses would be more spontaneous from our side and we would need to be really listening intelligently and digesting what we heard. I wondered how I would juggle listening to Bhagwan in this way, yet still feel I could be in a meditative space where my mind played no part, and unobtrusively sort through questions and be sensible enough to select one that was suitable. Would we all be equipped with pen and paper? How would people be able to get their questions to me without being a disturbance? What would I do if I couldn’t read, or misread their handwriting? In my characteristic way I managed to become fairly anxious about it, though – to give me my due – I realized that if Bhagwan said this was what was to happen then it would, and beautifully, so there was actually nothing to worry about. I stopped worrying, but the new format for some reason – or perhaps for no reason at all – was never used.” (Forman 2002, p. 345)
The mystery school
“Towards the end of that first month, Chetana submitted a question which was to trigger off a whole chain in a similar vein from the rest of us, questions that I considered “esoteric.” Up until then our questions had generally revolved around ourselves – problems with ourselves or in relation to others, to situations – or about the state of the world… practical sorts of issues. In the past, Bhagwan had never seemed to give us encouragement to indulge any fascination with chakras and past lives and spiritual powers like aura reading and so on. It appeared to me that perhaps we had not been ready for it. One could so easily get sidetracked by such things, and having got caught up in them, could become enmeshed in a whole pile of mind games and develop a spiritually selfconscious ego that had nothing to do with just being ordinary, uncomplicated, and joyful about the small things in life. I know I personally have always been wary of people who seem overly-intrigued by esoterica. The “spiritual ego” seems to me the most pernicious form the ego can take.
In fact I was to ask Bhagwan about the esoteric turn of events a little later, when he was to declare that soon he would start a “mystery school.” He has always been so pragmatic about truth, I asked, and a mystery school definitely smacked of the esoteric. And, I added, it seemed as if the mystery school had already begun.
Yes, it had, he affirmed, and then explained that in the past he had always emphasized the pragmatic because that formed the foundation, and when you are building a foundation it is a distraction to talk about the temple that is going to be built on it. “Truth is a mystery, and it can be discovered only in a mystery school,” he said, adding, “and this phase is going to be the most valuable. All that we have done before was a preparation. Ecstacy cannot be pragmatic, love cannot be pragmatic, truth cannot be pragmatic. All that is valuable is esoteric.” (Forman 2002, p. 335)
Video 3. Osho talking in Punta del Este, Uruguay, on mystery school and esoteric work. In: Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 44, p. 412. Punta del Este, 04.05.1986 am.
Mystery school and esoteric work
“Truth is a mystery, and it can be discovered only in a mystery school. And this phase is going to be the most valuable. All that we have done before was a preparation. The mystery school will create the purification, and the outcome will be perfection.
That’s why people who look at me only intellectually will find contradictions. but those who have a more comprehensive view of life will not find any contradiction. I have denied esoteric work, knowing perfectly well that one day I will have to introduce you to the esoteric work. But everything in its time, not before; otherwise it can simply create confusion. And if esoteric work is introduced to you without any foundation, you are not going to work for the foundation, because that is not interesting. The esoteric work is really very interesting, but I don’t want you to make a temple without a foundation. It has happened many times; then the temple falls and destroys those who were building it.
The word ‘esoteric’ simply means: you cannot put it objectively, scientifically. It is something inner, something subjective, something so mysterious, so miraculous that you can experience it but you cannot explain it. You can have it, but still you cannot explain it. It remains beyond explanation. And it is good that there is something in life which you cannot bring down to language, which you cannot bring down to the objective world… something which remains always beyond. You can become one with it – and that is going to be part of the work of the school.
I have been spontaneous in my work, but these are the mysteries of life, that existence itself has taken care. I have left it to existence, “Whatsoever you want me to do, I will do.” I am not the doer; I am just a passage for existence to reach people. So I have never planned, but existence functions in a very planned way. So all the phases that have passed were necessary, and now we are ready to enter into the last phase – the ultimate ecstasy.
Ecstasy cannot be pragmatic.
Love cannot be pragmatic.
Trust cannot be pragmatic.
All that is valuable is esoteric.”
Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 44, p. 412. Punta del Este, 04.05.1986 am.
“But both our communes have helped to bring us to this point where we can start a mystery school. Without those two communes it would have been impossible. This is my way of looking at things. Even failures bring you closer to success, because each failure gives you insight into what went wrong, how it went wrong. So both the experiments have been immensely significant.
Now we are in a position to create a totally different kind of place, which is simply a festival all the year round. People will be coming and going. They will take whatever they learn and they will practice it in the world, and they will come again to renew, to refresh, to go further, deeper. Only a skeleton crew will be here to take care of you.” Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 38, p. 350. Punta del Este, 01.05.1986 am.
“So it will be a world school of mysticism where people will be coming and going, taking the message to all the nooks and corners of the world. And I don’t want you to be in any way associated with anything… road-making, making houses, and creating a dam – all that is just damned foolery!
I simply want you to remember me as a flower, a fragrance, a flame, a light; associate me with these things. That is going to be the purpose of the new mystery school. I would like to call it the mystery school rather than a commune, because that name has become associated with the commune we had.” Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 17, p. 154. Punta del Este, 20.04.1986 pm.
“Coming here and going from here I pass a room in which there is a beautiful carving of The Last Supper. Jesus and his followers must be in deep insecurity – tomorrow anything is possible. But you are even more in insecurity, because they knew what was going to happen tomorrow. It was well known that Jesus would be crucified; hence this was the last supper with the master. They would not be eating with him again. So in a way it was not so insecure; it was certain – tomorrow he is going to be crucified. There was a certainty.
Even that certainty is not here. Anything can happen tomorrow – to me, to you. As far as I am concerned, I know that this is something that was bound to happen. Sooner or later the whole world was going to be against me, because I was fighting against the whole rotten world. It is a wonder that they tolerated so much. They can destroy me very easily, they can shoot me, but they are afraid: if they kill me, then they will make the biggest religion in the world ever. Jesus had only a dozen followers but his crucifixion gained so many sympathizers – if they kill me it will go against them, so they cannot kill me.” Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 37, p. 338. Punta del Este, 30.04.1986 pm.
Asking questions to Osho
“Beloved Bhagwan, This morning as You spoke on “the questionless answer,” I watched my questions dissolving into silence, which I shared for a moment with You. But one question survived, and that is: If we don’t ask You questions, how are we going to play with You?
That’s really a question!
It will be difficult, so whether you have the questions or not, still you can go on asking just the same. Your question need not be yours, but it must be somebody else’s, somewhere. And my answer may help somebody somewhere, sometime. So let us continue the game.
I cannot say anything on my own. Unless there is a question, I am silent. Because of the question it is possible for me to respond. So it does not matter whether the question is yours; what matters is that the question is bound to be somebody’s somewhere.
And I am not only answering you. I am answering, through you, the whole of humanity… not only the contemporary humanity, but also the humanity that will be coming when I will not be here to answer.
So find out all the possible angles and questions, so that anybody, even in the future when I am not here, who has a question can find an answer in my words.
To us it is a play. To somebody it may become really a question of life and death.” Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 13, p. 121. Punta del Este, 18.04.1986 pm.
No question to Osho
“Bhagwan, We’ve run out of questions.
You don’t have any more?
Anando, some question about poor Avesh? No? Okay!”
Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 14, p. 130. Punta del Este, 19.04.1986 am.
“The discourse in which he answered yet another of Milarepa’s questions – “How does the man of Zen take his tea?” – was breathtaking. It prompted a response that took up the entire one and a half hours of the talk. It wasn’t a discourse, it was a journey. I cannot recall a word Bhagwan said by way of reply, but I still remember the exquisite silence he cast us all into that day, how twenty of us sat as one disciple with his master; how that one disciple seemed to disappear entirely into the master, so that for that time, there was actually no one present in the room – just an empty chair in front of a video camera. Everyone had simply, silently evaporated.” (Forman 2002, p. 352)
Discourse in June 1986 with a message to his people
“So sannyasins who are far away all over the world need not miss me. It is up to them – just they will have to change their attitude. And it is a good opportunity to change their attitude. While I am still here, if they can start feeling my presence all around the world, then no country can prevent my presence entering into their land. No country, no power can prevent me coming to your heart. Their power is very limited. It may be very big but it is very limited: it is material. And your capacity is far bigger, tremendously big: it is spiritual. But just to be aware of it and to use it is needed.
Once you taste the beauty of it, you will be thankful to all the politicians who have been desperately creating walls between me and my people. I have become a nightmare to them – and I have not done any harm to anybody. But perhaps their suspicion is right. They suspect that I have the potential of attracting the whole youth of the world; of changing its approaches towards life, attitudes towards life – which will cut their vested interests absolutely. That much they understand; hence all this harassment. But you need not be worried about their harassment. They know only one way of connecting with a person: you know something more – a deeper way, an invisible way. Most probably once in a while you will be able to come to see me and be with me. But even if that becomes difficult – they will try hard to make it difficult – it doesn’t matter.
I am available to you wherever you are.
I am with you wherever you are.
Just remain vulnerable, open, receptive.”
(Punta del Este. 16.06.1986. Last phonelecture from Uruguay quoted from Rajneesh Times (Germany), 20.06.1986)
Shunyo recalling from Uruguay
“When He arrived He walked around with His hand on His hips admiring the house and gardens. After a couple of days He came to sit in the garden every day…
Sometimes He would do work with Hasya and Jayesh and sometimes with Anando, or He would just sit, in perfect stillness, for maybe two or three hours, until Vivek would come to collect Him to tell Him that His lunch was ready. He never read anything, He never even shifted His body in the chair, just sat motionless… Anando told me about one day when she was sitting with Osho in the garden reading Him newspaper clippings and letters that had arrived from disciples…
Hasya and Jayesh were constantly visiting different countries trying to find a home for Osho, in case Uruguay should not work out. They made a forty hour flight to Mauritius, at the invitation of the prime minister, only to discover that he wanted six billion dollars for Osho to enter his country. France had asked for ten million dollars for what was virtually a five years lease. Twenty-one countries had now denied Osho entry, some countries that we had not even thought about! Such fear that Osho would destroy the morality of their country, just by landing in the airport.” (Shunyo 1999, pp. 188,190)
Maneesha writes on Teertha
“Not long after we’d arrived in Uruguay and discourses had recommenced, one of us asked Bhagwan about the fact that they had heard some sannyasin therapists now imagined that they were doing the same work as Bhagwan though perhaps on a smaller scale. They also no longer mentioned Bhagwan’s name and appeared to have actually dropped sannyas…
Of course it was Teertha’s prerogative to cease being a sannyasin, but what I found so hard to swallow was that, first of all, Teertha had refused to allow Bhagwan the entire occupancy of “Villa Volpi” when Hasya – while we were in Nepal – was so desperately looking for somewhere for Bhagwan to live. Teertha lived for seven years [in Poona] in the largest, most luxurious room in Bhagwan’s house – the room directly above Bhagwan’s – and, like me, was looked after for that entire period by the ashram. At Rajneeshpuram he had continued to enjoy special privileges, including being one of the few sannyasins to have the use of a car to themselves. Some sannyasins saw Teertha as Bhagwan’s successor, and it seems Teertha too nurtured the illusion that he was the most obvious candidate.” (Forman 2002, p. 356)
Teertha had in the Spring of 1986 in Sicily established the International Academy of Meditation conducting groups with his consort Ellen Van Horrsen. His manifesto was reported in an article entitled ‘The Therapists’ Controversy’ in Rajneesh Times, 1986. Osho responded through his secretary, Ma Prem Hasya:
“We ourselves were going to tell all Sanyasins not to participate in any of the therapy groups of Teertha, Amitabh, Somendra, Rajen, Poonam, and anybody who has betrayed Bhagwan.
And Teertha has never been a disciple, but only a politician hoping to succeed Bhagwan. As far as his therapy is concerned, it is nothing but a mindgame. Bhagwan has allowed these phony people as therapists to clean the minds of those who have never known the art of meditation. But now that the therapists will not be doing their therapies in the context of a master and meditation, they can prove immensely dangerous. Their therapies can create a kind of addiction. They cannot help anyone to transcend the mind.
These therapists are full of mental problems. The rate of suicide and madness in therapists has risen: it was twice as much as other professions, now it is thrice.” (Aveling 1999, p. 287)
Two open letters going out to all Osho publications from Osho’s secretary Ma Prem Hasya on Swami Anand Teertha and Swami Amitabh are printed in Rajneesh. The Newspaper. Vol I, No.5, 16.07.1986.
“On July 10, 1986, letters were sent to Teertha and Amitabh from Ma Prem Hasya, Personal Secretary to Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, and a Notice: No participation in therapy groups with Teertha, Amitabh, Somendra, Rajen and Poonam.” (sannyas info, August 1986)
After Osho’s message on therapists in Rajneesh. The Newspaper, Vol I, No.3, interviews follows with Ma Anand Poonam, Sw Veresh, Sw Dayanand Bharati, Sw Anand Rajen, Sw Yoga Nishant, Sw Prem Prasad, Ma Prem Purna, Sw Deva Wadud, Sw Anand Santosh, and Ma Yoga Sudhas. “We called Villa Volpe [Italy] and were told by another therapist that Teertha would not like to make any statement at this time.” (Rajneesh. The Newspaper. Vol I, No.4. 11.06.1986)
Sw Chaitanya Keerti writes with the heading: The Therapy Phase
“The following letter is in connection with Poonam’s open letter.
Poonam has been 14 years with Bhagwan as his disciple. To be with Bhagwan as his disciple is to go through many phases of growth. Once, therapy was also one of the phases, like other phases and it had its role and relevance. But we don’t have to get stuck with it, just because it has become our security or survival.
Right from the very beginning, Bhagwan taught us to live in insecurity or to live dangerously. He never said Sannyas meant security. And now Bhagwan has changed his phase, in which therapy has lost meaning and is out of date. Yet, it is the therapist who want to cling to therapy (more then the clients) for their security and not grow up.
Bhagwan always had many devices to get rid of a certain group of people at certain times – people who were not open for change. His single statement could do the job. And now perhaps he wants to get rid of the priesthood of therapists.
In the beginning Bhagwan got surrounded by Gandhians. He spoke a few words against Gandhi and most of the Gandhians fled; only a few real lovers of Bhagwan did stay. Then there were intellectual types; many of them also had to run away because Bhagwan started Kirtan and Sannyas, which could not appeal to the rational mind. Then came the Western people; with them came therapy, which actually has nothing to do with Sannyas or Master-Disciple relationship. It certainly has something to do with the shit of the mind, but it has absolutely nothing to do with the deeper mysteries of life. Meditation is potent enough to give you the taste of Mystery.
And so, now, the Mystery School. Therapy has to give way. Therapists have to go just like the old dry leaves from the trees. The wind is blowing strong.
Swami Chaitanya Keerti.
Editor’s Note: Keerti is an Indian Sannyasin and was one of Bhagwan’s earliest disciples.” (Sannyas News, 27.06.1986; sannyas info, August 1986)
Susan Palmer writes on Somendra
“Another head therapist, Michael Barnett (Somendra), also claimed he was enlightened and subsequently founded the MB Energy University in Zürich. He advertised Zen courses especially designed to propel disillusioned “Buddhafield” dropouts rapidly toward the individual goal of satori. Barnett’s message in his brochure (No Nation News, July, 1988:6) is carefully anti-collective and anti-institutional:
I am not interested in building a movement called the Wild Geese Company of which I am the great leader internationally known… (T)he Wild Geese Company is an Energyfield… a teaching… designed to enable enlightenment to happen for all who make contact with it and only that.
I’d rather have one person who meant business about their enlightenment that a hundred thousand people who thought the WGC was a great thing to belong to.” (Aveling 1999, p. 287)
Anando on international plot
“And suddenly there at last, in Uruguay, the whole international plot against Bhagwan was revealed. It was a truly Machiavellian plot, simple and artless, and devastatingly effective. Devastating because it was designed to work secretly without any possibility of challenge, using innuendos and deliberate untruths in the guise of diplomatic reports – a strategy that has come to be known as the spread of “diplomatic disinformation.”
Bhagwan’s friends had received hints from government officials in other countries of dark and sinister facts underlining their rejection of Bhagwan. Mutterings and rumors of INTERPOL, gun smuggling charges, drug dealing and prostitution – the things any government would love to hear about a prospective resident. But they had never been able to pin down any specific allegations to refute. It was all ‘top secret’ government-to-government information. In Uruguay, however, Bhagwan’s friends had highly placed allies. And there they unfolded the Kafkaesque workings behind the rejections that had followed Bhagwan from country to country. It was simple. Diplomatic informationtelexes would arrive from a number of different countries (all, incidentally, NATO members) with horrifying reports of crimes and other dastardly deeds supposedly committed by Bhagwan and his followers, and containing dire warnings of the disasters that would overtake any country which took him in. Copies of some of these telexes, which had formed the basis of governments decisions, were given to Bhagwan’s friends. They were stunned – the reports contained nothing but the repetition of the most outrageously defamatory fantasies that had been concocted by the worst of the yellow press over the years. And along with the telexes went confidential ambassadorial whispers-in-the-ear of other scandals (whispered no doubt because the information was so patently fabricated it could not be committed to paper, not even ‘top secret’ paper).” (Appleton 1987, p. 76)
Osho on buggers
“On another occasion, Anando asked, “Why do people bug our telephones everywhere we go? Are they looking for spiritual guidance on the cheap?”
“Certainly,” Bhagwan said gravely – he always answered such questions with the utmost sobriety – “let them have it. We have nothing to hide. They can come and be here and enjoy, but poor people! – they feel embarrassed to come so they bug. So whenever you are phoning just put in a few spiritual things for the buggers!” (Forman 2002, p. 351)
“Finally, he was able to find a home in Uruguay, thanks mainly to President Julio Sanguinetti, who welcomed him and allowed his caretakers to rent a villa on the coast. There these ‘inconvenient guests’ could relax, while Osho’s application for permanent residency was processed.
In this period, Osho gave a series of very beautiful discourses that are collected in three magnificent books on ‘The Psychology of the Buddhas’. After two months, however, the American Government successfully forced the departure of Osho, by threatening to recall millions of dollars in loans to the Uruguayan Government if he was allowed to stay.” (Rosciano 2013, p. 251)
“The American government has been telling all the government of the world that I should not be allowed, even as a tourist, in their countries. One small country, Uruguay, in South America, was very happy that I had come there, because the president had been reading my books, and he had not dreamt that I would ever come to Uruguay. So he said, “We will make every effort to give You land, so that You can create a community. Because not only will we be enriched by Your presence and Your disciples, but thousands of pilgrims will start coming, and we are a poor country – it will be a financial gain too.” And he immediately managed a one-year residence visa for me.” The Rebellious Spirit (1987). Session 25, p. 249.
“Bhagwan arrived in Uruguay on March 19. The US Ambassador visited the Uruguayan Foreign Minister at his home in Montevideo that same night. Coincidence? (The visit was not prearranged.) The Minister, Inglaisis, was known to have his eyes on the post of Secretary General of the United Nations, and he needed American support to win it. Surprise! – In an abrupt about-farce, Inglaisis, who had granted Bhagwan’s tourist visa, strongly opposed Bhagwan’s presence in Uruguay at subsequent government meetings, only backing down towards the end when he realized he was in a minority of one.” (Appleton 1987, p. 75)
On politics in Uruguay
“My trip around the world has been a great experience. Here in this small country, which pretends to be democratic, they had decided three days ago in the morning that I am going to stay here, and that they would help my people to come, that they would give every facility. Immediately the American ambassador must have contacted Ronald Reagan. A threat came to them that if I am allowed to stay here then they will be asked to pay their loans of the past immediately – and that is billions of dollars. No poor country can pay that. They cannot even pay the interest. “And if you cannot pay, then the interest rate will be raised” – one thing. And second, “For the future, we have allotted billions of dollars to be given in loans to you. That will be stopped.”
Immediately, just within one hour, everything changed. The president said, “We cannot allow him to stay here.”
Ronald Reagan must have been informed: “The government has changed its mind and is willing to send him away.” Just yesterday they have been rewarded. They have been given one hundred fifty million dollars as an immediate loan, and they have been given another reward: two hundred million dollars from their past loans have been dropped; they will not be asked for.
So three hundred fifty million dollars is an immediately prize. In fact, I was thinking to send Anando saying, “What is my commission? You are getting three hundred fifty million dollars. And if every country does that, I am perfectly happy: I can go from one country to another country just to collect my commission.” The Path of the Mystic. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 37, p. 389. Punta del Este, 22.05.1986 pm.
Osho on his leaving
“But Ronald Reagan insisted, “No, he has to be deported; he has not to be persuaded to leave.” The president of Uruguay begged him that this was going too far.: “In the first place he has every right to stay, because he has not committed any sin. He never goes out of his house. Secondly, to deport him what cause will we show?”
President Ronald Reagan was stubborn. “That is not your problem, but he has to be deported.” The president of Uruguay tried. He sent a messenger to me, “Shift your jet plane from the international airport to a small airport nearby. And leave from there, because the American Embassy is watching the international airport. There will be no need for us to deport you.”
But American detectives must have been watching the president; they must have been watching me also. Before I reached the small airport, the American ambassador was there ahead of us and he had phoned the president to send all the officials with the necessary documents for deportation: “Without deportation he cannot be allowed to leave the country.”
I was deported. I had to be stopped for two hours at that small airport, and for no reason. But they have made my passport a historical document. I had been deported from twenty-one countries without any reason – against the constitutions of twenty-one countries. The Invitation (1988). Chapter 9, p. 101.
Anando on US pressure
“The reports that INTERPOL had certain evidence were pursued. When the Uruguayan government checked, it was admitted that in fact INTERPOL had nothing on Bhagwan or his companions. With the ‘factual’ diplomatic reports discredited, the tactics against Bhagwan changed. The US Ambassador told the Uruguayan government, “Bhagwan is a very intelligent man. He is also a very dangerous man because he can alter the minds of other people. He’s an anarchist, and will destroy the social structure of the country.”
The Uruguayan government thought otherwise. Understanding the whole situation, they now agreed that there was no reason why Bhagwan should not be given permanent residence in their country. The affirmative decision to that effect was made on the afternoon of May 14, 1986, and a government press statement prepared to release the news to the world the following day. Someone (Inglaisis?) told the Americans. That night Sanguinetti, the President of Uruguay, received a call from Washington, DC, saying that if Bhagwan stayed in Uruguay, current US loans of six billion dollars would be called in, and no future loans given… The US screwed hard. It wanted Bhagwan out of Uruguay as soon as possible. His original three-month visa still had a few weeks to run, but the one year temporary permit was valid until a written decision was given in response to his residency application… The day the three months expired, calls came from Washington every hour to their Home Ministry, enquiring whether Bhagwan had left. He left that evening, in a convoy of police cars. In an explosive tinderspark atmosphere, and surrounded by police, his one-year-residence card was illegally confiscated and he was herded out to his waiting jet. Uruguayan friends who, right up to the end, had believed passionately in the fairness and justice of their country, waved goodbye with tears in their eyes and disillusion in their hearts. The stunned disbelief on their face told all. On June 19, the day after Bhagwan left, Sanguinetti and Reagan announced from Washington a new loan to Uruguay of $150 million.
Immigration officials at the Uruguay Department of Justice who had been handing Bhagwan’s application were alarmed at their government’s illegal actions. They appended a written note to his file which stated, for the record, “that the superior order that Bhagwan leave the country was verbal, with no reasons given for its implementation; that as Bhagwan’s application is still being processed, the order is not in accordance with legal procedure, and is arbitrary, extraordinary, hasty, discriminatory and unexplained; and that the order goes against the established constitutional rights of a foreigner who has requested residence.” That document may save the hides of its authors in a future investigation. It did not save Bhagwan.” (Appleton 1987, p. 77)
Resident’s visa in Uruguay
“Unknown to us at the time, but confirmed by Marcos, on May 14th the Uruguayan government – in spite of Inglesias being against the decision – decided that Bhagwan should be given a permanent resident’s visa in their country, and a press statement was prepared to that effect to be released the next day. That same night, Wilkey [US ambassador] received a call from Washington, D.C. and then went to see Sanguinetti, the president of Uruguay. If Bhagwan were granted residency, the US would demand Uruguay immediately pay back its six billion dollar loan and forget any idea of help from US in the future.
Sanguinetti asked Wilkey why the US was so against Bhagwan settling in his country, on which the US ambassador showed him a CIA report which stated that Bhagwan was an intelligent man, even a brilliant man. But he was also an anarchist and had the power to change peoples’ mentality. Uruguay would regret it should the president agree to Bhagwan’s staying. In spite of this, two week later Sanguinetti sent a message to Bhagwan saying that if he were silent for six months, until after the American loans came through, he would be granted permanent residency; Sanguinetti would be able to tell the Americans that he had been forced to give Bhagwan residency by Uruguayan law. But Bhagwan would not accept this restriction on his right to talk to his disciples.
However, as far as Hasya and Jayesh knew at the time, the granting of Bhagwan’s permanent visa was simply still pending and there was no cause for alarm. They left for England and Hong Kong where they began looking into purchasing an ocean liner…
It was around this time [mid-May], too, that Bhagwan was heard to say that he did not feel safe in Uruguay, that he wanted to go back to India…
The three months of Bhagwan’s visa was almost over…
Back at his hotel – it was now mid-afternoon on June 17th – again on the spur of the moment, Cliff rang the house in Uruguay.”Get us a plane! Anando told him. “We’re leaving!” Patric O’Connor was back in the picture again. He had a contact – who was a friend of the minister for economics in Jamaica – and could ensure Bhagwan’s being able to stay in Jamaica. The plan was to fly Bhagwan there.” (Forman 2002, pp. 360,361,366)
Kendra on Hasya as new international personal secretary
“… but after his secretary Sheela left, Osho made me the assistant to his new international personal secretary, Hasya.
Hasya had been a movie producer in Hollywood and was part of a small group of Americans known as the Hollywood Set whose enormous wealth had made it possible to finance much of Osho’s world tour as it was about to unfold.
When Osho and his small entourage, which included Hasya, left the States at the end of 1985, I was one of those to follow him off the Ranch and accompany them on their journeys.
Although Hasya was now his secretary, at this point she was very busy out in the world, trying to find at least one place on the planet that would allow Osho to stay. We had been bounced around from pillar to post, rejected by one country after another after being given short-term visas that had mostly been cancelled.
By the time we got to Uruguay, we had in hand relatively long visas compared to all our other stops. We had been moving around so much, with no real home, that we were really glad to be able to relax a bit. We knew the stay would be temporary, because Osho had only got a tourist visa for three or four months, but it was still far longer than any of his other visas had been on his world tour.
Hasya and her partner were a long way away, flying back and forth searching for a place for us to settle – but it was a constant struggle. We weren’t aware of it yet, but the US government had put out some kind of global proscription on Osho and his people, and though inklings of this were trickling through, no one had any idea how long the tentacles of the United States government were, nor how powerful their global strangulations could be.
We’d been in Punta del Este for about three months, and although Osho knew that Hasya was trying to find a permanent home in case Uruguay didn’t pan out, all he was concerned about was: Where are my people? I heard this directly from him, but I’d also heard it through Hasya after her meetings with him and Vivek…
Osho wanted nothing other than continue his work in the way he had been able to in Poona or in Oregon.
Now once again, the police had started to hang around outside that Punta del Este villa. We could see them on the road in about four parked cars, and all they were doing was watching us. Possibly they were waiting for orders to cancel Osho’s visa and deport him, but none had come down yet…
One evening after discourse, he called just three of us into his room, Vivek, Anando – later to be his international secretary and who, as a former lawyer, I suspect was acting as his legal advisor – and myself. This was the first time during the whole period I’d been traveling with his entourage that I’d personally seen Osho in his room. Most of the time we were all out doing his work; only one or two people got to see him privately…
And then he spelled it out: “I don’t feel good here. I want to leave.”…
I’d been on the phone to Hasya several times before the meeting and she was always saying to me, “I need more time. I just need more time. Keep him happy there.”
As it was, at this particular moment Hasya was seriously trying to stall things, because she was in France and France was an inch away from giving Osho a visa…
But it was as if he was sensing something… as if he needs to make some move and he needed to make it immediately! He seemed to know that bad things would happen if he didn’t.
And of course he was right…
Within 48 hours, Hasya was with us in Punta del Este. And within a few hours of her arrival, Osho and all his main helpers were on a plane out.
We’d had to book a private plane; we didn’t even know where it was flying to at that stage. We packed his things and we slipped him out very discreetly. The police could see some activity with the car leaving and so on, but it seems they had no instructions to intervene at that point, so they satisfied themselves with following the cars to the airport.
One hour later, I understand, orders came down for his arrest. Just one hour!
Once again, Osho had got away just in time.” (Kendra. In: Savita 2014, p. 195)
“Just yesterday all the three political parties of Uruguay unanimously decided that they would like me to stay here and they welcome me and my people. The president, the minister for foreign affairs, the minister for interior affairs – these are the three persons who have to sign for my permanent residence here – they agreed totally that there is nothing against me. And all that has been sent to them from different countries – from England, from Spain, from America, from India, from Greece, from Italy, from Germany – not a single word is against me; it is against the people who may come if I stay here.
Now this is a strange statement! It is against the followers, because somebody has been found with drugs…
But it is so simple logic: the person who has been found with drugs was also a Christian or a Jew, and he was a Christian or a Jew or a Hindu for his whole life, and for centuries, generation after generation. And he has been a sannyasin only for one year, but I am condemned! Christianity is not condemned, Jesus is not condemned, the pope is not condemned… not even mentioned.” The Path of the Mystic. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 25, p. 265. Punta del Este, 16.05.1986 pm.
Time to go
“One day Bhagwan said simply, “We should go.” No one understood why. Uruguayan government officials were promising – at least officially – a successful conclusion to the legal and parliamentary turmoil over Bhagwan’s promised permanent residency.
That afternoon an orange Lear jet dipped below the Atlantic haze and landed in a rural airport behind Punta del Este.
And a few minutes before seven o’clock that evening Bhagwan emerged from His room and went directly to His waiting car. Within moments the car eased out of the driveway entrance and turned toward the hills behind the house.
Traveling over dirt roads, outlined on a simple map in Spanish, the car pulled into the parking lot of the Punta del Este airport ten minutes later. It was an international airport but perhaps the smallest in the Americas.
After what seemed like just a few breaths later Bhagwan was on board. The jet whined to a start and, making a fast rollout, lifted off the runway toward the Atlantic coast a scant two miles away. He was gone, out of sight. Only the low rumble of the jet engines still could be heard. No one spoke.
We looked around dazed. We were standing on a runway, in a field, in the middle of nowhere. The slightest reddish haze of a long-set sun hung in the West.
Only later did we learn that the Uruguayan government, under pressure from the U.S. State Department, had just that day denied Bhagwan’s application for permanent residency. The order of denial was delivered to Bhagwan’s attorney at exactly 5:03 pm with a stipulation: If Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh was not out of Uruguay at 5:00 pm that day He was subject to immediate arrest.
But by the time the Government order could be delivered to Bhagwan He was comfortably asleep, 35.000 feet over Brazil.
What Bhagwan left behind is in these pages: nothing can be compared to it.” (The Transmission of the Lamp. Talks in Uruguay (1989). Text on jacket flaps)
Osho on religions and the naming of India
“Jainism, Buddhism, Taoism – these religions are the religions of meditation. Their history is simply clean, no bloodshed.
Judaism, Christianity, Islam are the religions of prayer. Their whole history is full of blood and so ugly that to call it religious and to call these people religious looks like a mockery.
Only one religion, Hinduism, is left. Hinduism is a totally strange phenomenon, different from both the religions I have described. Hinduism is many religions together, it is not one religion. So you cannot characterize Hinduism with other religions which have a certain personality. Hinduism is a chaos. There are hundreds of religions under the umbrella of Hinduism. Even the word ‘Hinduism’ was not given by Hindus themselves.
There was no name in India. People were free to follow whatsoever they wanted to follow. That’s why hundreds of small paths, having their own uniqueness, developed. There was no singular name for the whole complex, it was a crowd; but as India was invaded, the invaders gave it a name. And by coincidence, when you enter India you have to pass one of the biggest rivers of India, Sindhu, and the first invaders had no letter for ‘s’, the closest letter was ‘h’. So ‘Sindhu’ became ‘Hindu’ and they called the people who lived beyond the Hindu river ‘Hindus’. They had to call them something – these people, who are living beyond the Hindu river.
And you will be surprised that from ‘Hindu’ the word traveled to other tribes, became ‘Indu’, became ‘India’; but it is the same Sindhu river which created all these names – Hindu, Indu, India.
Otherwise, India was totally a free country. Everything was accepted, whatever he was doing and whatever he wanted to do. It was his right.” The Transmission of the Lamp. Talks in Uruguay (1989). Chapter 46, p. 439. 17.06.1986 am.
Osho on scriptures
“I have looked at all the scriptures of the world religions: there is nothing. And that is our strength – that there is nothing, they are empty. Just you be full of light.” The Path of the Mystic. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 14, p. 151. Punta del Este, 11.05.1986 am.
Niren on fact-finding mission to Uruguay in 1988
“When asked whether they obtained any meaningful information in Uruguay, Niren replied: “Yes and no. Our lawyers, and other friends with close contacts within the government, told me clearly and unequivocally, that the United States government had placed pressure on Uruguay to deny Bhagwan’s residency application. They told very specific stories with times, places, and dates about how Uruguay was pressured, and uniformly concluded that there was absolutely no way that Uruguay would have reversed it’s policy and position in order to reject Bhagwan without United States pressure and a desire by Uruguay to accommodate the United States.”
“But as soon as I took out my tape recorder and told them that we would need documentation of their testimony in order to support our work in the United States, literally everyone said that they couldn’t speak for the record, that they would lose their position or face reprisals from the Uruguayan government or from the United States.” (The Institute for Justice & Human Rights Journal, June 1988)
6.7 Onwards to Jamaica and Lisbon, Portugal
“We had discourse on the morning of June 18th as usual, and Rafia and Chetana left for Jamaica shortly after that. They were to go ahead with the luggage, which was considerable. Rafia recounted later how, passing through Miami airport, the two of them were stopped by a customs officer who stared at what Rafia described as the several tons of luggage the two had with them…
Only later, through Marcos, was it learned that on the same day, June 18th, Sanguinetti was in Washington negotiating a new loan from the US, and that there had been constant calls from Sanguinetti to the home ministry in Uruguay inquiring if Bhagwan had left the country yet. On June 19th – the day after Bhagwan left the country – Sanguinetti and Reagan announced from Washington a new US loan to Uruguay of $150 million…
Thank Goodness a plane was now ready at the airport. It had been scheduled to leave later in the night, but now we wanted to have Bhagwan flown out of the country as soon as possible… Fortunately the little airport in Punta was only minutes away from the house…
The plane bearing Bhagwan flew out of Punta del Este at approximately 8:00 p.m. on Wednesday, June 18th. The journey took him across Brazil, with a short stopover for refueling at the capital city, Brasilia. The group was about a third of the way towards their destination. Another hop took them to Boa Vista, near the borders of Venezuela and Guyana to the north and east, and Columbia to the west. Bhagwan woke once or twice to eat some yoghurt or cashew nuts that Mukti had hurriedly packed in Uruguay, and to drink some mineral water; otherwise, he slept through the entire journey. Crossing over the Caribbean Sea, the plane finally touched down early on the morning of Thursday, June 19th, at Montego Bay airport, Jamaica.” (Forman 2002, pp. 367,368,371)
Vasant Joshi writes
“Shortly before his departure from Uruguay, the island of Mauritius informed that Osho was welcome there. Two people flew to this little country in the Indian ocean only to discover that what the government meant was really that the prime minister would consider allowing Osho to come there in return for a sum of two billion dollars!
Osho finally went to Jamaica’s resort city, Montego Bay. Without any trouble visas were given to the group. Contacts had already been made and there seemed to be no problem. However, the US naval jet had landed almost at the same time, its non-uniformed officers sweeping into the administration building with loaded briefcases. A wave of nervousness spread through the group and with fingers crossed they waited and hoped that it may have nothing to do with them.
Soon, everyone was installed in a beautiful house overlooking the ocean. Osho went off to take his afternoon nap; and for the first time in days, the group with Osho began to settle down. But it was only a matter of hours before there was knock on the door. It was the police. All visas were withdrawn ‘for reasons of national security’ and everybody was asked to get out of the country within twenty-four hours.” (Joshi 2010, p. 206)
Arriving at Jamaica
“Bhagwan and the group alighted from the plane and made their way into the lounge…
Anando did some fast talking. She and the others were given two-month visas; Bhagwan and Mukti, ten days. That was good enough – at least Bhagwan was in the country. The visa could be extended later, at leisure…
Anando happened to glance out onto the runway and noticed a jet which had landed alongside their plane. It seemed to have US Navy markings on it, and from it emerged two civilians, suited gentlemen carrying briefcases and files. They were walking rapidly across the tarmac towards the terminal. US agents tracking Bhagwan? Anando hastily returned to Bhagwan in the lounge and as quickly as possible he and the group were in taxis and on their way…
The house was a fifteen-minute drive from the airport, set up on a mountainside, and looking onto a beautiful, very green golf course, and, further away, the sea. The house was two-storied, spacious, clean and airy, with an immaculately tended garden surrounding it and an elegant white gravel driveway leading up to the front door…
Next morning, June 20th, Bhagwan was up and ready for a walk around the house. Surveying the sittingroom, he designated it for discourses, and plans were immediately underway to arrange for airconditioning units to be installed…
She [Mukti] hurried into Vivek’s room, where she and Anando were chatting. “Policemen are here!” she said. “Oh God!” exclaimed Vivek. “Not again.”…
They went away, only to return a couple of hours later. They wanted to see the passports of everyone in the house…
Bhagwan was to be out of Jamaica by sunset that evening…
“Where are the orders from?” Anando demanded. “From the department of the interior.” “And what are the orders exactly?” “They are under the National Security Act.” Anando couldn’t believe her ears. The National Security Act was for terrorists! No wonder these beefy black, armed police were petrified!… Devaraj was all gung-ho to try Cuba.” (Forman 2002, pp. 372-374)
Onwards to Jamaica and Portugal
“From Uruguay Bhagwan flew to Jamaica, where he was given a ten-day visa. A few minutes after he landed, a US Air Force jet flew in and discharged two civilians, one carrying a dossier of papers. That was the afternoon of June 19, 1986. First thing on the morning of June 20, armed police (yes, again) arrived at his house, demanded the passports of Bhagwan and his group, stamped their visas “cancelled,” and ordered the whole group to leave the country that same day. “For national security” was the only reason given. Bhagwan’s host, a personal friend of both the Prime Minister and the Minister for National Security, spent the entire day trying to contact them. In vain. The whole government was ‘unavailable’ that day…
From Jamaica Bhagwan flew to Portugal. It was an unexpected move – no prior negotiations had been made with the country. And by a lucky chance his plane first landed at Madrid, which had mistakenly been filed with the flight plan as the plane’s ultimate destination. The mistake was quickly corrected in Madrid, and the plane flew on to Lisbon, but anyone attempting to track Bhagwan would have been temporarily stumped. By another lucky chance there was no computer classification against Bhagwan’s name at Lisbon, and he managed to slip quietly, and it seemed unnoticed, into the country on a regular tourist visa. Within a few weeks, however, the police turned up at the house in which he was staying – a house which, incidentally, he had never gone out of. Soon the police set up a 24-hour surveillance, and managed to thoroughly intimidate the caretakers of the house and the house owner.
To avoid the inevitable, Bhagwan decided to leave. With the rest of the world closed off to him, he had nowhere else to go but back to India – and he had to go alone. The Westerners who had been taking care of him continuously for eight to fifteen years were refused visas by the Indian governments to accompany him.” (Appleton 1987, p. 79)
Maneesha arriving at Jamaica
“The flight from Kingston was perhaps twenty minutes, and we touched down at Montego Bay in the late afternoon. I was shepherding through a huge trunk full of our typewriters and transcribing machines, plus mounds of typed discourses when I was pulled aside and made to undo it. The trunk was inspected. I could not take it with me, unless I was prepared to pay a humungous tax on it. I decided to leave it with the customs; the matter could be looked into the next day. Now all that concerned us was to get ourselves out of the airport. This time Arup was there to meet us, and drove us to the Half Moon Bay Hotel. En route she told us what had happened, and that Bhagwan would be leaving Jamaica within the next few hours.” (Forman 2002, p. 375)
Excerpts from Jamaican Newspaper
“On Gurus and Tolerance. By Morris Cargill.
One gets the impression that the particular guru who was recently told to leave Jamaica was undesirable on the grounds that he advocated “free sex”. I would have thought that anyone coming to Jamaica to advocate free sex would be carrying coal to Newcastle. So what’s new?
I have been looking up the activities of this guru in past issues of various magazines and I cannot find any convincing particular reason why so many countries should take such violent objection to him, except possibly for evasion of income tax. I can only imagine that the goings-on in his commune which include everyone going to bed with everyone else, are regarded with general disapproval.
I cannot imagine anything that could be a greater bore, more confusing, or more exhausting. Yet the world is full of different people with widely varying tastes. Should the guru be ostracized for encouraging a system of bed-hopping which, if the truth be told, is probably a component of the sexual fantasies of a sizeable number of very respectable people?
The real reason, it seems to me, for kicking him out (as the case of others) is that people who set up communes with social rules greatly at variance with the rules of the country in which the commune is established are in fact challenging, and perhaps undermining, the social coherence of the country. You cannot, in fact, have a country within a country.
This says much for the splendid tolerance of Jamaica. Or is it that this tolerance, like the strength of the ecumenical movement, is that most people do not understand one damn thing about what they are tolerant about?
One kind of tolerance, and the only kind which seems to me worthy of the name, is the resolution to live and let live, in spite of a full understanding of the profound differences involved.” (Rajneesh Times, 15.08.1986)
Headline: Where is He now?
“On or about June 19, Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh ended a three-month stay in Uruguay and left for places unknown. His friends worldwide are wondering where the “Mystery School” he wants will finally be established.
The report that He left Uruguay initially came from the Brazilian Air Force and Federal Police. According to Brazilian sources, Bhagwan’s jet landed in the Amazon Jungle city of Manaus at about 3 a.m. on June 19 for refueling only, departing soon thereafter. “He did not ask for a Brazilian visa,” said a Foreign Ministry official in Brasilia, the capital, “and he was not granted one.”
After Brazil, Bhagwan landed in Jamaica, but after three days was expelled by authorities who said they believed He had gone to New Jersey. This seems unlikely, to say the least, because when Bhagwan agreed to leave America last November the terms of the agreement specified that He would not re-enter the country within five years without the written permission of the Attorney General of the United States.
Since it was announced that Bhagwan left Jamaica on June 23, rumors have also placed Him in Portugal, in Holland with therapist Veeresh, in the Dutch New Hebrides, and on Callisto, one of the moons of Jupiter.
Callisto is the largest known moon in the solar system, and according to unconfirmed reports is noted for its complete absence of politicians, air pollution and organized religion.
Ploof Muskbusk, Callisto’s Minister of Tourism, tells RAJNEESH: “We cannot comment as to whether Bhagwan is on Callisto or not. But Callisto has relatively high gravity, and since it is a place where you can be incredibly high in the sky while still keeping your feet on the ground, I feel it would be a good place for Bhagwan and His friends.” (Rajneesh. The Newspaper, 16.07.1986)
Osho leaving Jamaica
“Cliff in Uruguay, had been rung as soon as the police order to leave had been given. By happy coincidence, the same company that had flown Bhagwan from Pennsylvania to Delhi seven months before – even one of the pilots was the same – had a plane available, a four-engine, ten-passenger Jetstar…
According to an Associated Press report of June 21st, Bhagwan was told by immigration officials to leave Jamaica because he was “undesirable.”…
While Bhagwan was still in Uruguay, Swami Amrito had arranged visas for Chile, Argentina and Portugal; it was to Portugal Bhagwan was being taken now. Hoping to throw the Americans off Bhagwan’s trail, Hasya had given the destination as Madrid. She intended that Anando inform the pilots en route that in fact Lisbon was where they wanted to go.” (Forman 2002, p. 278)
Onwards to Portugal
“The last possibility was Portugal. Efforts were being made to allow Osho a respite in that country. Generally, the only way to make it across the Atlantic is to fly up to Canada and then back across to Portugal. But Canada had already refused permission for any plane carrying Osho to stop even to refuel, as Germany had. Finally, things were sorted out, and after refuelling in Canada the plane headed back across the Atlantic. Osho’s way of travelling remained the same. He ate his food, took his nap, and relaxed. There was never a trace of concern about what was happening, he always seemed totally at rest…
On June 20, the plane with its precious passenger landed in Madrid, but strangely nobody was there to meet them. A rapid phone call added a touch of comedy to the unfolding tragedy: ‘What are you doing in Madrid? We are waiting for you in Lisbon!’ The group entered Portugal and tried to hide Osho in the Ritz Hotel. The plan was to sneak him off later to another, quieter location…
A house outside Lisbon was the next planned stop. Osho and the group moved to Sintra, but soon the police appeared. Any attempt to secure a longer stay in Portugal was denied.” (Source yet to be verified)
“Saturday, June 21st. At Lisbon airport, Bhagwan and the group passed smoothly through the immigration department…
Taxis whisked Bhagwan and the others off to the Ritz Hotel, where Hasya had booked rooms in advance…
The hotel was fine in all respects except that it was damp, and might prove unsuitable for Bhagwan’s health. In addition, there was the ever-present concern of security. It seemed a stroke of luck that they had managed to enter Lisbon undetected by the Americans. But it could just be a matter of time before they caught up with Bhagwan. The Ritz was the most obvious place to look for Bhagwan; somewhere else, then, was needed for him to stay…
To protect Bhagwan it was decided that the move from the Ritz to Estoril be effected in the middle of the night. The Ritz garage attendants had agreed to cooperate, and a Mercedes was parked in the basement, ready for Bhagwan…
It must have been one in the morning by the time they reached the hotel in Estoril…
It could only have been an hour or so later that there was a light knock on Devaraj’s door. It was Vivek. Bhagwan was having trouble breathing; it seemed an asthma attack was imminent…
The hotel simply wasn’t suitable…
The movie continued in reverse: Bhagwan climbed back into the car, and the troupe set off towards Lisbon. It was nearly dawn when they arrived at the garage basement, and took the lift up to Bhagwan’s suite, into which he disappeared to sleep.” (Forman 2002, p. 378-381)
“After a few more days at The Ritz, a house was found for Osho. It was situated on a mountain-side, the only landmark on the horizon being a castle with a golden dome-shaped top, and below that, a forest…
Not only was the pine forest at the end of the road in Rajneeshpuram, but this pine forest was to be at the end of the road for the world tour…
We prepared a room where Osho could resume discourses, but He only sat on His balcony facing the pine forest. After about ten days the weather changed and mists crept up the mountainside and swallowed up the forest.” (Shunyo 1999, p. 210)
Moving to Sintra
“Towards the end of June, Cliff arrived in Portugal, and, with Anando and Chetana helped find a house in a place called Sintra, up in the hills – several hours’ drive out of Lisbon. The day they saw the property that was available – a large house set among dense foliage, ferns and towering trees on a mountainside – it looked magnificent. The sun was out, the air clear, the house perfect in being so secluded. Bhagwan and the group – except Hasya and Jayesh, who had flown off to France to check out a possibility there – drove up to Sintra one morning and were soon settled in…
The small vestibule in his suite seemed the best place for discourse to be held. Although it was tiny, it was only a few paces from Bhagwan’s room, and it was private. The alternative would have been the sittingroom, but that would have meant that Bhagwan had to walk the stairs to and from it, and that was an inconvenience…
One day we spent the afternoon cleaning the vestibule in preparation, and Nishkriya installed microphones, video equipment and lighting. Air conditioning also needed to be brought in. We were all ready – and then suddenly, Bhagwan would not be giving discourse after all. He was not well enough.” (Forman 2002, p. 381,385)
Osho on compromising
“I cannot please everybody, and neither am I interested in pleasing everybody. I am not a politician; the politician tries to please everybody. I am here only to help those who really want to be helped. I am not interested in the mob, in the crowd. I am only interested in those sincere seekers who are ready to risk all – all – to attain themselves.
This is going to anger many, this is going to create much controversy, because I am a very non-compromising person. I will say only that which is true to me, whatsoever the consequence. If I am condemned for it or murdered for it, that’s perfectly okay. But I am not going to compromise, not an iota.
I have nothing to lose, so why compromise? I have nothing to gain, so why compromise? All that could have happened has happened. Nothing can be taken away from me, because my treasure is of the inner. And nothing can be added to it, because my treasure is of the inner.” The Book of Wisdom. Vol I, 1983, p. 262.
Resolutions and Legal Acts
“Just the other day the secretary of the Dutch parliament, answering the questions of journalists, said that I have not been allowed in Holland and I will not be allowed in Holland because I have said something in praise of Adolf Hitler. And the journalist pointed out that I have contradicted it – and it was the German magazine ‘Spiegel’ which had misquoted me. And the secretary accepted that that was true, it was a misinterpretation, but still…
“His coming may create a disorder.” And the journalist said that when the pope came there was tremendous protest against him and great disorder, and yet he was allowed, and he was a guest of the government. And as far as I am concerned, in no country have I been protested against by the people. There is no precedent for it, it is just their assumption. And Holland has thousands of sannyasins, the reporter said, who would welcome him.” The Transmission of the Lamp. Talks in Uruguay (1989). Chapter 17, p. 165. 03.06.1986 pm.
“While Bhagwan was in Ireland, a group of us in England waiting to join him, and Hasya and Jayesh in Spain still working to have Bhagwan there, Arup in Holland began to look into the possibility of inviting Bhagwan to her country of birth…
However even before Arup was given a private response or a chance to deal with any questions that might be of concern, a statement was given to the national daily newspapers to the effect that Bhagwan would not be permitted in the country. Stamped with the seal of the ministry of justice, the release, dated March 14th, read:
As reasons for this denial the Secretary of State advances that Bhagwan staying in The Netherlands is thought to be able to disturb the public order and/or public peace. The following has been considered. The statements that have been made by the person concerned on – specifically – Dutch television about certain persons, groups and institutions are being experienced as insulting by certain parts of the population and may lead to stronger disapproving reactions by the public through the presence of Bhagwan in The Netherlands. Moreover, it is not impossible that these statements will be repeated publicly in The Netherlands.
The Secretary of State’s denial is based on Article 5 of the Benelux Agreement about the transfer of customs to the outer boundaries of the Benelux territory. (Dated April 11, 1960.)
The “insulting statements” referred to were in part related to quotations taken from an interview with Bhagwan by the German weekly ‘Der Spiegel’, which was then reproduced in the Dutch weekly magazine, ‘Panorama’. Because of the way in which ‘Der Spiegel’ edited Bhagwan, it appeared he had favourably compared Hitler with the much-revered Mahatma Gandhi. After objections from sannyasins, ‘Der Spiegel’, published Bhagwan’s complete answer on the issue, making it clear that he was not an admirer of Hitler. However, in spite of Dutch sannyasins’ protests, ‘Panorama’ failed to follow suit, publishing only the first distorted version…
Dutch sannyasins, with characteristic stubbornness, did not let matters rest there. In April, Swami Shridhar met with lawyers and the Dutch chairwoman of the International Judicial Committee of Human Rights to seek their advice on how best to apply for a tourist visa for Bhagwan. He then sent the forms, in addition to invitations from two groups of sannyasins and a declaration of financial sponsorship for Bhagwan’s stay in Holland from Arup’s father, Swami Paritosh, to Hasya should Holland be considered from her side.
The question of Bhagwan’s entry to Holland was raised in the Dutch parliament in April and then again in May. It was repeated that through his statements he could “endanger public rest, public order or the national security,” that the Dutch follower [Arup] who had met with the visa department representative in March gave no guarantee that Bhagwan wouldn’t make such statements. “For similar reasons, also other counties (the Federal Republic of Germany, the United Kingdom, Greece and the United States) had denied entrance to Bhagwan.”…
It was especially bizarre in light of the fact that not only the pope but Reagan too had recently visited Holland, and both had been very unpopular with certain segments of the population – so much so that the guests had had to have very heavily armed escorts to keep demonstrations away from them! The government was then, in effect, saying that Bhagwan was going to cause more of an upset than either Reagan or the pope!” (Forman 2002, pp. 290-294)
“It is such a strange world. Just a few days ago, a court in Germany in a way decided in my favor against the government, but in a way the judge could not understand my approach to life. The government was trying to prove that I am not a religious person, because I myself have said that religion is dead, I myself have said that I am not a serious person, and the judge said, “Those statements were made in a press conference, they cannot be taken seriously. And we do not know the context. You have to produce statements from his written books. I consider him to be a religious man, and I consider his teachings to be a religion. And whatever he is saying and doing is a serious work.”
Although we won the case, the judge could not understand, neither could the government.” The Transmission of the Lamp. Talks in Uruguay (1989). Chapter 12, p. 113. 01.06.1986 am.
Speaking on entry to Germany in February 1987
“Just the other day I received a letter from the German parliament. One year before they had passed an order that I cannot enter into Germany for the same reasons. Not only that, my airplane cannot land on any German airport for refueling. One sannyasin has appealed to the parliament appeals committee, saying, “Now, one year has passed, and this ugly order should be cancelled.” That’s why I have received a letter again. A copy of the letter has been given to the sannyasin saying that this order cannot be cancelled because this man is dangerous. They don’t mention what danger – just the same old crimes they had imposed on Socrates. Almost twenty-one countries have decided that I cannot enter in their countries. And these are the most developed countries of the world.” The Razor’s Edge (1987). Session 28, p. 326.
The decree referred to from October 1985 is documented as under in an answer by state secretary Neusel, Ministry of Interior, to a written question from member of parliament Dr. Meyer zu Bentrup (CDU/CSU) on refusing Osho entry to Germany.
Question (No. 12):
“Wie beurteilt die Bundesregierung die rechtlichen Möglichkeiten, die in der Öffentlichkeit erhobene Forderung nach einer Verweigerung der Einreise des Sektenführer Bhagwan in die Bundesrepublik Deutschland durchzusetzen?”
In his written answer (14.10.1985) Neusel states no visa will be issued and that Bhagwan will be rejected if trying to enter Germany:
“Die Bundesregierung hat veranlasst, das dem Sektenführer Rajneesh, Chandra Mohan, genannt Bhagwan, kein Sichtvermark für die Bundesgebiet Belange der Bundesrepublik Deutschland beeinträchtigen würde (vgl. §2 Abs. 1 Satz 2 des Ausländergesetzes). Bei einem Versuch der Einreise ohne Sichtmerk is er zurüchweisen” (Schriftliche Fragen. Drucksache 10/4051, p.6. 18.10.1985. Geschäftsbereich des Bundesministers des Innern)
This position is repeated shortly after in an answer to a question by Dr. Diederich (Berlin) by state secretary Spranger:
“Herr Kollege Dr. Diederich, über die in den Medien veröffentlichten Meldungen hinaus liegen der Bundesregierung keine weiteren Informationen vor, ob der Sektenführer Bhagwan in die Bundesrepublik Deutschland einreisen will.
Die Bundesregierung hat veranlasst, dass Bhagwan kein Sichtmerk für die Bundesrepublik Deutschland erteilt wird, weil seine Anwesenheit im Bundesgebiet. Belange der Bundesrepublik Deutschland beeinträchtigen würde; vgl. §2 Abs. 1 Satz 2 des Ausländergesetzes. Bei einem Versuch der Einreise ohne Sichtvermerk is er zurückzuweisen.” (Stenographischer Bericht. Plenarprotokoll 10/170, p. 18. 06.11.1985)
Same Diederich reiterate his question again in February 1986 and he receives 26.02.1986 a confirmative answer from state secretary Spranger: the position of the government on this issue is unchanged. (Schriftliche Fragen. Drucksache 10/5137, p. 3. 28.02.1986)
No go to Germany and Frankfurt book fair
“Representative, Dr. Meyer Zu Bentrup, of the Christian Democrat Party, brought up the question of Bhagwan’s entry into Germany, in parliament shortly afterwards. On October 14th, in answer to him, the government denied Bhagwan a visa as a “preventive measure.” Their move was apparently instigated by pressure from “concerned parents.” The decree noted that Bhagwan’s entry would be “against the public interest.”…
But in March of 1986, while he was in Ireland, the German government gave as the reason for not allowing Bhagwan into the country that he was “a leader of a youth sect who is creating a menace, particularly for young people.” His visit would lead to unrest among parents of sannyasins too, it was claimed…
To add to the absurdity of the situation, in September of 1986 Frankfurt would be holding its annual international book fair. The theme for the year was “India,” and one of the books featured was Bhagwan’s semi-autobiographical book, ‘Glimpses of a Golden Childhood’, which had been translated into German and published by the renowned publishing company, Goldmann’s. Twenty-seven Indian authors were invited to the fair; Bhagwan was prohibited. At the opening speech, the minister for foreign affairs – Genscher – talked of the “necessity for open-mindedness in order to keep alive plurality in literature,” and noted that the fair was a true example of this “unrestricted cultural dialogue.” He added, “We [the German government] want to create around the world a free-flow of cultural and scientific information, beyond all boundaries… We Germans know from our past what it means when books are burned and authors persecuted, and we will work tirelessly to maintain our freedom, both inner and outer, just as we will never cease to champion the freedom of others – the forbidden and the persecuted.”…
Then, months later, a break: Wolfgang Daniels of the Green Party became interested in Bhagwan’s situation and his sannyasins’ attempts to rectify the German parliament’s attitude towards him. He promised he would do what he could, and in the summer of 1987 the Green Party filed a question on the matter. Now the German government found a third justification for its refusal, saying that a visa had been denied Bhagwan because he had been found guilty of crime in America. But as already pointed out, Bhagwan had not been accused of any crimes in October 1985, when the denial was first instigated! Anyway, does Germany refuse entry to all and everyone who has had a criminal record in the past?” (Forman 2002, pp. 296-299)
Decree passed in the Bundestag and further research stalled
“On October 18 , the German Parliament in Bonn, the Bundestag, enacted an decree which denied Rajneesh entry into Germany. They had been working on the wording of the decree since July. The decree said that his presence would “conflict with the interests of the Federal Republic.”…
“There are five levels of secrets within the German government,” he [Klein] told me two months after our original contact. “Number one is the lowest level. Number five is the highest level. The questions you have asked involve level five.”
“I can’t understand why such a simple thing would be so highly valued,” I said. “It has nothing to do with German national security.”
“You are right. It has nothing to do with national security,” he said. “It has to do with national pride. Our politicians do not want the German people to see how nakedly the Americans order them around, the strongest economic power in Europe. It hurts our German pride.” (Brecher 1993, p. 294)
“The German government was equally intractable. It passed an emergency decree that Bhagwan not be allowed into Germany as his presence there “would go against the State interest.” The decree was described by a government spokesperson as a “precautionary measure.” Great! Bhagwan was well-known in Germany through his books, over fifty of which had been translated and published by such reputable publishers as Fischer, Goldman, Heyne, and Droemer-Knaur. In September, Frankfurt held its annual International Book Fair, the largest in the world. The theme for 1986 was “India,” and one of the books featured was Goldmann’s new translation of Bhagwan’s semi-autobiography, ‘Goldene Augenblicke – Portrait einer Jugend in Indien’ (Glimpses of a Golden Childhood.) The German Foreign Minister, Genscher, addressing the opening of the fair, stressed “the necessity for openmindedness in order to keep alive plurality in literature.” Noting that the Fair was a fine example of this “unrestricted cultural dialogue,” he said, “We (the German government) want to create around the world a free-flow of cultural and scientific information, beyond all boundaries…
We Germans know from our past what it means when books are burned and authors persecuted and we will work tirelessly to maintain our freedom, both inner and outer, just as we will never cease to champion the freedom of others – the forbidden and the persecuted.”
Laudable words. Unfortunately the government was unable to live up to them. Twenty seven Indian authors, all of them relatively unknown in Germany, were invited to attend the fair. Bhagwan was prohibited. The irony was not lost on the booktrade. In the book-fair edition of the bookpublishers’ magazine ‘Borsenblatt’, well-known journalist Rudolf Baucken wrote, “The beautiful ideals proclaimed in the opening speeches – are they really valid? If so,” he asked, “why did the German government take precautions to prevent Bhagwan’s appearance?” Baucken called the refusal, “a challenge to all mature citizens and those institutions such as PEN, VS, Borsenverein, etc., which stand for freedom of thought, international exchange of ideas, and pluralism.” Praising Bhagwan’s books for their “intellectual brilliance, their psychological depth, and their poetic beauty,” he noted the old adage, “a good author is one who swims against the stream.” According to that, he said, “Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh must be a very good author. He was chained and thrown out of the United States; in the Soviet Union he is considered a CIA agent and his readers are visited by the KGB; in Crete the Christian bishops threatened to have him stoned; and practically all governments of the world, including our own cautious Germany, refuse him entry into their countries.”” (Appleton 1987, p. 72)
Rudolph Baucken writes
“A good author is one who swims against the stream. Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh must be a very good author. He was chained and thrown out of the United States; in the Soviet Union he is considered a C.I,A. agent, and his readers are visited by the K.G.B.; in Crete the Christian bishops threaten to have him stoned; and practically all the governments of the world… refuse him entry.” (Dr. Rudolf Baucken. Börsenblatt, West Germany. In: Meredith 1991, p. 113)
Vision versus Conspiracy
“But the doors that are being closed to me are not closed in ignorance; they are closed in the full knowledge that if I am accepted I am going to transform the younger generation. I am going to give new dreams and new hopes in the young people, which can prove dangerous to the old vested interests – politicians, priests and others. It is being done with full knowledge, and it has become now a world conspiracy – it is unprecedented. Never before has the whole world unanimously agreed against one single individual who has no power except the power of his vision, of his eyes, of his realization. But this is nothing to be sad about…
Killing me is dangerous, so they are trying a different way: I should not be allowed to stay anywhere, so people cannot come in contact with me. In India they cannot deny me, just by my birthright. So in India they have to do it the other way: they will prevent anybody from outside India from reaching me. That was their condition…
So their effort in India was to isolate me; in all other countries their effort was not to let me have permanent residency anywhere. But that does not mean that they can prevent what I am doing and saying and what I am going to say. I will find a way. It is not a question of me, it is a question of truth finding its own way. If it has any merit, if it is a need for humanity, then all these ambassadors and all these presidents don’t matter at all.” The Path of the Mystic. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 29 & 33, pp. 304,341,342. Punta del Este, 18 & 20.05.1986 pm.
“And just now I have received the information that all the countries of Europe, jointly, are deciding that I cannot land my plane at any airport. How will that effect their morality – refueling the plane?” Socrates Poisoned again after 25 Centuries (1988). Epilogue. Chapter 29, p. 402. Punta del Este, 15.04.1986 am.
A petition to EU for the unlimited circulation of people and ideas was circulated in 1986:
“According to the article 108
We the undersigned European citizens
Remembering that articles 13 paragraph 2,18 and 19 the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948, so read
– every individual has the right to leave any country, including his or her own, and to return to his or her own country;
– every individual has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes the freedom to change ones religion or beliefs, and the right to manifest, in isolation or within the community, and in public or in private, ones own religion or beliefs in teaching, practice, worship, and observance of rites;
– every individual has the right to freedom of opinion and expression, including the right to not be molested for his or her opinion and that of seeking, receiving, and spreading information and ideas by whatever means and without regard for frontiers;
Remembering that Greece, Great Britain, Ireland, Holland, the Federal Republic of Germany, Italy, Spain, Portugal and France, all members of the Community, faced with a proper visa application by the Indian citizen, Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, all responded in one of following ways: a) refusal, b) admittance granted with duration and movement limitations for no apparent motive, c) admittance and later expulsion without there having been any proven criminal acts;
Underlining that as there are no criminal procedures of any kind against Mr Bhagwan in the countries from which he has asked for a visa;
Taking note of the fact that in his speeches, ideas, and actions, Mr Bhagwan has never encouraged the use of violence for the affirmation of his teachings;
Remembering that the European Community as a whole, has made the Universal Declaration of Human Rights an integral part of its Treaties establishing the Communities, since 1977;
Remembering that the nations in question have also approved the above-mentioned Declaration
to ask the members in question to correct their behavior with full respect for the signed accords.”
Here follows a format to affix one’s signature:
A letter (no date mentioned) from Rajneesh Services Corporation, referring to Prem Sergio as contact person, mentions the Italian origin of the initiative and adds that there is direct support from the Radical Party whose members have guaranteed that it will not finish in the waste basket! They ask to send the signatures collected to
Comitato Promotore della Petizione
per la libera Circolazione delle Persone e delle idee
presso PARTITO RADICALE
Via Cavour 75
50129 Firence (ITALIA)
or to the Rajneesh Times
Venloer Str. 5-7
D-5000 Köln 1.
A resolution was tabled for the European Parliament’s plenary session in April 1986. The full text of the motion is included in Appendix. Excerpt:
“The European Parliament
C. whereas the alarm felt by the citizens of many Member States at the presence of Rajneesh Mohan is visibly growing,
D. having regard to the anxiety felt by many parents that their children may unwittingly be drawn into the Bhagwan cult and suffer adverse psychological effects as a result,
1. Calls on the Ministers meeting in the framework of European political cooperation to do their utmost to ensure that the Bhagwan leader is no longer allowed to settle in any Community Member State.” (European Parliament. Working Documents B2-41/86. 19.03.1986. PE 104.414)
The motion for a resolution was tabled pursuant to Rule 47 on
behalf of The European People’s Party (EEP), the Group of Christian Democrats founded in 1976 and being the largest political party in EU.
On 14.04.1986 the motion was sent to the Political Committee for further action “by Mrs Lenz, Mrs Peus, Mr Croux, Mrs Cassanmagnago Cerretti, Mr Lucas Pires, Mrs De Backer-Van Ochen, Mr Duran I Lleida, Mr Bersani, Mrs Braun-Moser, Mr Stavrou, Mr Marck and Mr Klepsch on behalf of the EPP Group, on the residence in the Community Member States of the Bhagwan leader Rajneesh Mohan (Doc. B 2-41/86).
Committee responsible: Political Affairs Committee,
Asked for an opinion: Legal Affairs Committee.” (Official Journal ot the European Communities. Information. European Parliament 1986/87 Session. Sitting from 14 to 18 April 1986. Palais de l’Europe-Strassbourg. No C 120. Page 9. 20.05.198)
In its meeting of 26 May 1986, the Political Affairs Committee decided not to draw up a report as stated in their minutes:
“Motion for resolutions for which the Political Affairs Committee has decided not to draw up a report:
12 Motion for a resolution tabled by Mrs LENZ and others, on behalf of the EPP-Group, on the residence in Community Member States of the Bhagwan leader Rajneesh MOHAN (Doc. B 2-41/86) (asked for an opnion: Committee on Legal Affairs)
…” (European Parliament. Political Affairs Committee. Minutes of the meetings of 26, 27 and 28 May 1986. The Hagua. PE/I/PV/86-5. Page 14. Point 12)
So, no action was taken, the motion was not adopted by the Political Affairs Committee and accordingly never reached the floor of the Parliament. End of story. Not quite. Whereas no common action was taken on the overnational level of the European Community, on a national level the individual member states still had a lot of space for manoeuvring on this issue. With the American authorities on their backs as previously mentioned.
Osho on resolutions
“Just today Anando informed me that Venezuela – I have never thought about it! – has passed a resolution that I am banned, I cannot enter into the country. Even in Ireland, where we were for two weeks, the government is now denying it. They are not even courageous enough to say, “Yes, they were here and they are gone.” They are denying, saying, “They have not been here. How could they enter into the country? – because they are banned.” Just as we left they must have passed some resolution in the parliament to ban us.
The European parliament has a resolution now to ban me collectively, rather than separately, so all European countries who are members of the parliament automatically become closed.” Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 23, p. 206. Punta del Este, 23.04.1986 pm.
Visa Applications Stalled
“Intellectuals, religious people, politicians, governments are recognizing… and they are so much afraid that nothing can be a greater reward to me. No single individual has ever made the whole world so afraid without doing any harm.
I am not a terrorist. I am not throwing bombs, not hijacking their planes. What can their fear be? Perhaps I have touched their very root which is rotten; I have pressed their hurting nerve. They know they don’t have many answers to me, and whereever they don’t have any answers, then the gun is the answer. But they cannot even kill me. They are really in a dilemma – what to do with me?
They cannot kill me for the simple reason that if they kill me they will create a worldwide upheaval which will bring my people together, forgetting all their small problems. They will be one of the strongest communities of people. And those intellectuals, religious people, politicians will not be able to answer for it – the whole world will be asking. The same people who are against me will start feeling sympathetic, and they will ask why this has been done.
It is not a small thing that the American government should inform all its embassies that whereever I reach immediately approach the government, threaten the government that American help, American money, will be stopped if this man is allowed to stay.” The Path of the Mystic. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 5, p. 63. Punta del Este, 06.05.1986 pm.
Hasya running out of countries
“I don’t have a home. I don’t have a place to live. I don’t have any money. Still, I have something that gives me absolute contentment. I have lived according to my potential, and even if death comes it will not upset me. I have lived my way. The whole world may be against me – it does not upset me. People get upset even if one person is against them. They get so upset; I cannot even understand it.
Hasya was saying, “Bhagwan, soon we will be running out of countries.”
I said, “That does not matter. First we will run out of countries, then we will find something else. We can have a big boat and live on the boat.” Because I said in Crete, “If you don’t allow me in any land anywhere, I will have a jet plane and I will be living on that,” they immediately started a movement that I cannot land at any airport in Europe. I am really enjoying that a single person who has no power can make these pygmy politicians just go out of their minds! I had just mentioned it, and immediately the European parliament tabled a resolution, which they will be discussing soon and passing, that I cannot land at any airport in Europe.” Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 42, p. 396. Punta del Este, 03.05.1986 am.
Bahamas, Panama, Spain, Germany
“Now the Bahamas have decided that I cannot enter; other countries – Panama and two or three other counties near Panama – afraid that I may come there, have decided. Strange, that they are afraid of a single man so much. Soon I think they will be deciding in the U.N. that this man should not be allowed to stand on the earth anywhere.
But I take it as a good sign. It means they have recognized one fact: that what I am saying they cannot refute, that what I am saying is dangerous to their very roots…
In Spain, the government took one month to decide: the parliament discussed, the cabinet meetings went on for seven days, and finally they decided – the president and the prime minister, all were involved in it – that I should be allowed in. And then came a letter from the German government that three criminals are traveling with me. They called my secretary, Hasya, and told her, “We don’t have anything against Bhagwan, but from the German government there is tremendous pressure that three criminals are with you.”
She asked, “Who are the three criminals, and what crimes have they committed?” By insistently asking, we have come to know only that one is German, one is Canadian, one is American. Strangely enough, there is no German in the group, so one third of the information is absolutely wrong. There are a few Americans, but none of them are criminals, and none of them remembers that he has committed any crime! One is Canadian: he is shocked by hearing it – that he is a criminal. There are no charges against him.” Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 27, p. 244. Punta del Este, 25.04.1986 pm.
“If there were a few “open and friendly people” in France who might be receptive to Bhagwan, they did not show their faces. When France heard that Bhagwan’s people were looking for a country for him in which to stay, the government became interested in extending him an invitation – at a price. Three million dollars would be needed for each political party and seven million dollars spent in investments, a total of thirteen million dollars. With that amount placed in a Swiss bank account, Bhagwan would be allowed into France. Hasya and Jayesh declined the invitation.” (Forman 2002, p. 303)
“An Italian within the Spanish embassy in Delhi who got wind of the telex told the consul there that he shouldn’t even consider letting Bhagwan into Spain. A telex to that effect was sent back to Spain, to the foreign affairs minister, to whom the consulates were directly accountable. He was Francisco Fernandez Ordonez, known as “Chaquetero,” because of his proclivity for changing allegiances with as little trouble as he changed jackets. He was known also as “The American Friend,” for his allegiance to the US. In the light of Delhi’s reaction, the sub-director of foreign affairs in Spain, Eduardo Junco Bonet, was given the visa request to look into again. He assured Hasya and Jayesh he would objectively review any material they cared to submit. “We made a complete dossier of everything to do with Bhagwan,” recalled Sargam, “all that had happened in America, half a dozen of his books to show them what a prolific author he was – over 400 books in over twenty-five languages – a mystic, a philosopher.” Only later was Sargam told that Bonet was a member of “Opus Dei” – a Catholic organization devoted to “God’s Work.” It is a political branch of the Catholic church, the mafia of the Catholic church. Originating in Italy, the organization has helped their people infiltrate all the different departments of power in Spain; for example, the largest bank in Spain belongs to them. An “American Friend” and a member of the Catholic mafia involved in a visa request for Bhagwan? In retrospect the outcome was a forgone conclusion.” (Forman 2002, p. 311)
“One man in Spain, a famous novelist, was very much interested in me because he has read a few of my books which have been translated into Spanish. He was working for one month continuously for me to get to Spain, and he is well-known in the whole Spanish speaking world, well respected, even by the politicians. He was talking to the president, to the prime minister, to the royal family, and they were all willing for me to come there. Then these letters from America, from Germany, from Greece, from Italy, started pouring in.
Just yesterday he informed me, “Now it has become difficult. Even the president has told me, “You don’t get involved in it. That man is very dangerous. Even your association with that man may bring difficulties to you; you just keep out, don’t mention his name!” But he asked, “What danger is there?” He said, “You don’t ask! It is a very dangerous situation.” Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 37, p. 340. Punta del Este, 30.04.1986 pm.
Spain: Junco Bonet, Ministry of Foreign Affairs
“Hasya and Suravi later found out that Junco Bonet had decided to exclude Rajneesh based on dossiers supplied to him by the Americans and Germans. The American dossier on Rajneesh contained fantastic yellow journalist press clippings. The German dossier stated that Rajneesh was involved in gun running, drug smuggling and international child prostitution rings. The German dossier further stated that Rajneesh enslaved his disciples both financially and sexually.
It was a repeat of what had happened when Rajneesh arrived in Greece, what had happened when he arrived in America. Everywhere he went a propaganda packet was bound to follow.” (Brecker 1993, p. 369)
“Now sixty-five eminent people from different sections of life, international figures, have protested to the government that I should be allowed in; there is no reason why I should be prevented. They all know it is the pope who is trying to prevent me because nobody else in Italy wants to prevent me, so by preventing me he is not creating friends, he is losing friends of major importance. And how long can he do that?…
I have been seeing reports from all over the world. One journalist has written an editorial saying that this is very strange: the world is facing a third world war and all the parliaments are discussing me – as if I am more dangerous than the third world war!…
People who have been writing against me are giving an apology in their writings saying that they were wrong. The actions of their governments are so much against freedom of speech that the people who were writing against me are protesting to their governments. “We may agree, we may not agree, but one thing is certain: the man has to be allowed in; you cannot prevent him. And what is the fear? Why are you so afraid?” Fear always shows your hollowness, emptiness, hypocrisy.” The Path of the Mystic. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 14, pp. 146,147. Punta del Este, 11.05.1986 am.
“Italy has been postponing my visa for two months continuously, because the pope’s pressure is there that I should not be allowed to enter. Germany has made an order to all the embassies that I am not allowed to enter Germany. I have never been to Germany; I have never been to Italy…
In Germany I have thousands of sannyasins… And they have to face the most difficult situations; in their jobs they have been thrown out, from schools they have been thrown out, from universities they have been thrown out. They have been fighting in the courts, and they have been winning in the courts; their discos, their restaurants have been closed forcibly and they have been fighting in the courts.
In Germany it seems I am the only problem.” Socrates Poisoned again after 25 Centuries (1988). Chapter 21, p. 296. Crete, 01.03.1986 pm.
“As elsewhere, in Italy the sources of pressure against Bhagwan were two – the United States and the church. The United States worked to influence both the church and the Italian government. Firstly, independent of any American pressure, the Catholic church was obviously antagonistic towards Bhagwan. In 1986 a booklet of over fifty pages compiled by Cardinal Ratzinger was issued by the Vatican in regard to “sects,” and mention was made of Bhagwan. It contained instructions to priests on how to keep children within the church and how to help parents warn their children of the danger of such organizations. Simultaneously, the Vatican sent a letter to directors of all Christian papers requesting that Bhagwan no longer be given any coverage – neither positive nor negative. This information was given by a journalist to Videha, the sannyasin in charge of the Italian press office at that time. In the light of this, Bhagwan’s view that the Vatican had played a part in his being expelled from America in 1985 doesn’t sound in the least outlandish. His suspicion was endorsed when, in the Indian ‘Sunday Mail’ of December 24th, 1989, an article appeared in which the following statement was made: “Cardinal Ratzinger is known to have operated behind the scenes in the expulsion of Rajneesh from America.”…
In March of 1986, two papers that weren’t Christian suddenly ceased writing about Bhagwan. The so-called independent ‘Republica’ and ‘Corriere della Sera’ had clearly been influenced by American propaganda. That such material existed was confirmed by a well-known Italian journalist who told Videha that Andreotti, the minister for foreign affairs, showed him a dossier he had on Bhagwan which, he volunteered, the CIA gave him.” (Forman 2002, p. 305)
(Note: The booklet by Ratzinger 1986 is yet to be verified)
Anando writes on Italy
“Italy, which likes to think of itself as the most democratic country in the world (something to do with all those governments?) was another country which showed up in an embarrassing light on this world odyssey. In January the W. Reich Biogenetic Institute of Rome, Milan and Turin invited Bhagwan to Italy for a series of conferences. The invitation was sent to the Italian Embassy in Kathmandu, where Bhagwan was then staying, along with his application visa. The embassy, using the time-honored dodge of “forwarding the papers to Rome,” hastily bowed out of the matter. Rome, pressured by the Reich Institute and later by Italian journalists and TV, used the equally classic refrain, “the matter is under investigation.”
In March, RAI and Canale 5 Italian TV stations (the ones which had been refused visas by the Indian government to visit Bhagwan), requested short-term visas for Bhagwan to come to Italy to be interviewed. The Italian government refused. At the time rumors were that the long arm of the Vatican was involved. Certainly the Vatican had good cause for not wanting Bhagwan in its backyard. At the end of February Bhagwan had been widely quoted from Greece by the international press as referring to the Pope as “the Anti Christ,” and saying that the pope and Christianity were responsible for AIDS – “homosexuality was born in the monasteries,” he had declared.
The rumors that the Vatican immediately put a censor’s ban on any further press coverage of Bhagwan, positive or negative, seemed substantiated when, in March, two major newspapers ‘Republica’ and ‘Corriere della Sera’ suddenly ceased covering Bhagwan’s world odyssey, major news at that time. Those papers also refused later on to accept paid advertisements containing a petition for Bhagwan from Italy’s intellectuals.” (Appleton 1987, p. 73)
“In Italy they have been postponing for almost three months, just for a three-week tourist visa. And the president and the prime minister and the minister of foreign affairs, all are saying, “We are going to give it to him – just tomorrow…”
And sannyasins are going every day; they are sitting there in their offices, saying, “Whenever you want we are ready. But when will your tomorrow come?” And after three months they got so frustrated, because the pope is holding it back. They cannot say no to the sannyasins because they have no reason to say.
And they know my impact in Italy. Just a few days ago, a television interview of one and a half hours was seen by thirty-four million people – unprecedented…
So the government could not say no because that might create trouble. And the pope is insisting that I should not be allowed into Italy. So they go on postponing. Finally the sannyasins got so frustrated that they started making a protest, and one of the most famous Italian film directors, Fellini, has signed the petition first. They have thirty-six other world-known people who have signed the protest, and they are collecting more names – and I have never been there.” Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 10, p. 93. Punta del Este, 17.04.1986 am.
Black Out by the Vatican
“Vatican’s request to the Catholic News Media: “Neither positive nor negative coverage on this person.” This did not even happen for the worst terroristic incidents.” (Sannyas News, 18.10.1986; sannyas info, October 1986)
“There are countries I was planning to go to and I heard that they had been instructed by the pope that I should not be allowed to enter because they are all Catholic countries.” The Sword and the Lotus (1989). Chapter 13, p. 153.
Interpol and police register being checked while in Kathmandu
“Around this time, out of curiosity Hasya asked Patric [O’Connor], through his contacts in America, to see if there was any reference to Bhagwan on the Interpol records. Spanish officials – and later Uruguayan and Portuguese officials – who were involved in looking into the possibility of a visa for Bhagwan would, in the initial stages of the process, mutter something about “Interpol.” The implication was that Interpol “had something” on Bhagwan.
Patrick checked; there was nothing.
Then was there anything on the police computer records in America? Hasya asked. Patric called a friend of his who was a police chief from somewhere on the east coast of America. The chief obligingly punched Bhagwan’s name into the computer at the police department and up it came – with a flashing red light. Not only that. Suddenly the police chief was inundated with inquiries from the FBI: Why was he wanting to know about “the Bhagwan”? Who was asking about him? It was from that time on, while Patric was living in Washington, that he noticed his phone was being tapped.” (Forman 2002, p. 159)
Anando raises some questions on World Tour events
“Why then did the German, Swiss, Australian and Dutch governments all pass emergency decrees in 1986 that he not be allowed to set foot in their countries?
Why did Italy and Sweden refuse him tourist visas to visit?
Why did England refuse to let him stay overnight in transit at Heathrow while his jet was grounded for eight hours?
Why was he abruptly deported from Greece after only two weeks of a four-week stay – two weeks in which he had never left his house?
Why did Canada refuse to let the jet in which he was a passenger land for just forty-five minutes to refuel – even with a bond to guarantee that he would not step out of the plane?
Why did a spate of easy-going Caribbean Islands, at the merest whiff of a press rumor that he was going there, alert their airports not to let his plane land?
Why did Jamaica, after giving him a ten-day visa, order him to leave the country within twenty-four hours of his arrival?
Why did a group of Christian Democrats present a motion to the European Parliament urging the member countries to take measures to prevent him ever residing on their territory?
Why did the Vatican request all Italian newspapers it controlled to make no mention even of his name?
Why did the KGB round up his supporters in Russia and confiscate all books and tape-recordings of his discourses?
Why did the US Attorney-General Ed Meese state that he wanted him “back in India never to be seen or heard of again”? And why did the US government resort to blackmail to ensure that he did not remain in the Western world?” (Appleton 1987, p. 10)
Heading: Bhagwan Shree Is Innocent.
“Attorney General Admits. (Portland, Oregon, U.S.)
After the trial of Sheela, Puja and Shanti B., the Attorney-General of Oregon, David Frohnmayer and Charles Turner of Federal Government gave a press conference where also a few sannyasin lawyers were present.
During this press conference one of the journalists asked why Bhagwan had not been sentenced to imprisonment, whereas his ‘followers’ had? Turner gave three reasons:
1. The main aim was to liquidate Rajneeshpuram, the commune in Oregon. This goal would be achieved the quickest way by sending Bhagwan out of the country, whatever else would happen.
2. They did not want to make a martyr out of Bhagwan.
3. NO PROOF COULD BE FOUND THAT BHAGWAN WAS IN ANY WAY INVOLVED IN THE SEVERAL CRIMES.” (Rajneesh Times (Holland), 1987; reprinted in: sannyas info, June 1987)
The final conclusion of what was happening behind the curtain during Osho’s World Tour is still a matter of investigation. As for the role of the Vatican and Ratzinger, see the subsection The Vatican Connection in Part Five. Oregon.
6.8 Returning to Bombay, India
When Osho arrives in Bombay it is the first time he uses the opportunity to address his Indian sannyasins in their mothertongue since he went into silence in Poona 1981, a few months before he left for the United States. As we may remember it is now the second time he takes up residence in Bombay where he lived in Woodlands back in 1970-1974. So we may even use the terms Bombay One and Bombay Two in this case. Earlier on he had also been staying twice in Kulu Manali in the Himalayas.
Headline: Bhagwan’s whereabouts officially unknown
“There is absolutely no hard information as to Bhagwan’s whereabouts. Official sources however confirm that he is “On land” and staying at a “Fixed Location.” These two points have apparently been emphasised to Scotch rumours that Bhagwan is at sea or that he is still flying around the world.” (Sannyas News, 11.07.1986)
Once again bound for India
“It was finally time for India again. On 28 July 1986, after weeks of political circus, those who had travelled half way around the world trying to find him a home where he could speak to his people, stood on the observation roof at Lisbon airport, as their beloved master, Osho waved farewell to them from the plane for the last time. And then he was gone. For those left behind, it was a farewell of tears and deep sadness. In all, twenty-one counties had either deported Osho or denied him entry.” (Joshi 2010, p. 208)
Leaving for India
“Then the bombshell: Bhagwan wanted to go back to India…
As for me, Bhagwan had said I should go to India as soon as possible, so I counted myself exceedingly lucky that because I was involved with discourses, Bhagwan wanted me there… Bhagwan’s departure was scheduled for Wednesday, July 29th… Neelam – who had taken care of Bhagwan in Kulu-Manali when Vivek had had to leave – was contacted, and flew to Lisbon. She would be going back to India with Bhagwan and taking care of him there…
The entire group followed Bhagwan through the departure lounge, Bhagwan waving at other passengers as they stopped in their tracks, until he reached the point beyond which uniformed personnel with walkie-talkies indicated that only the passengers could pass. Vivek and Hasya knelt by Bhagwan’s wheelchair for last-minute good-byes, the rest of the group forming a silent backdrop behind them…
When he were in Bombay, he wanted Neelam to be his secretary, Bhagwan told her now…
Bhagwan was adamant. Bombay was modern, convenient for sannyasins; many longtime Indian sannasins were there who had not seen him since he left India for America in 1981…
From Cyprus to Bombay was about the same distance as the first hop to Cyprus. It was sunrise, around six or seven in the morning, when the jet touched down at Bombay airport.” (Forman 2002, pp. 390-392,395-396)
Osho in a wheelchair
“Ever since His stay in Dakar, Africa, we pushed Bhagwan through airports in a wheelchair. In Dakar there weren’t any cars to drive from the plane to the terminal. The only thing there was a wheelchair. We used it, and from then on realized that it made life easier for everybody. As you all know, Bhagwan tends to arouse a lot of attention. And He never concerns Himself about whether we are in a hurry, or if we want to avoid the press. You know, He just walks through every airport, namastes and grins happily. And the people stare and wonder what’s going on. And we’re dying with impatience: “Come on, Bhagwan, let’s get out of here.” But He isn’t concerned. Oh well, that’s why it was a great relief to us to use a wheelchair, and He enjoyed it too. Sometimes we went through the airport – He wore a dark-brown robe – and we pushed Him along as if He was our grandfather. And you know Him, with His white beard…” (Interview with Ma Prem Hasya. In: Rajneesh. The Newspaper, 24.09.1986)
“Yet one morning, a few months after I had settled into my new school, I opened the local paper and there, sprawled across the front page, was a photo of a familiar face in a wheelchair – a man with a long white beard and cap. It was Osho – and the wheelchair was being pushed by none other than my own mother, Neelam.
This was in July 1986, and the caption read: “Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh Arrives in Bombay” – this was the name he was known by the time…
With the address torn from the newspaper in my pocket, I took a cab to Sumila Bungalow, where Osho was staying, and presented myself.” (Priya. In: Savita 2014, p. 199)
Azima writes on Hasya
“… when Hasya began to speak. She informed us that the Master had, indeed, stopped travelling, that he was well and that he would soon start to see his disciples again.
It was the first time I saw Hasya, a mature and elegant American woman from Los Angeles, who had the unenviable job of taking care of the organizations that had been tangled and muddied by the Sheela disaster. But Hasya inspired a lot of trust and was totally different from the arrogant Sheela.
She was simple, elegant, softly-spoken and her presence inspired calm. She had a distinguished bearing that emanated from the way she dressed and the way she moved; she was wealthy without being ostentatious. I would never have thought that, in a few months, we would become good friends sharing the honour of living in the house of the Master.” (Rosciano 2013, p. 278)
Heading: Bhagwan Ends World Tour
“After Bhagwan left Uruguay, RAJNEESH received this letter from Ma Prem Hasya:
At 3:45 p.m. on July 29 at Lisbon, Portugal, looking beautiful as ever, Bhagwan boarded His plane back to India where for now He will live quietly in a private residence.
The tour was a great success! Through many hardships, hazards and demands on His health, Bhagwan has given us an opportunity to experience for ourselves and in many different ways, the things He has been telling us for years of the workings of the world.
For instance, we have tested and knocked at the doors of many democracies. We have managed to embarrass some of them and others, as expected, simply didn’t care. We have seen over and over, how politics can overrule law and justice. We have experienced the Kafkaesque methods of international diplomacy where secret allegations and disinformation produced impenetrable closed doors; no accuse, nor accuser and therefore no defence.
We have caused countries, which consider themselves free and independent, to see their helplessness in the face of economic pressure brought to bear by the biggest superpower. Isn’t it exciting that this superpower is so afraid of “just one ordinary man,” our beloved Bhagwan?
Yes, this tour has shown us so much – and as Bhagwan said: “This has been a great meditation, and we had fun!”
His Blessings, Ma Anand Hasya, Personal Secretary to Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh.” (Rajneesh. The Newspaper, 13.08.1986)
Headline: Bhagwan Shree In India
“(From our Special Representative) Juhu, Bombay.
After travelling from one country to another across two continents, Europe and America, for full five and a half months, which travel will be remembered by history as unique and unprecedented, hazardous and historic, Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh returned to India on the morning of July 29 in a chartered jet plane accompanied by two of His Indian disciples, Ma Yog Neelam and Ma Amrit Mukti. Not a single western disciple was seen with him, thanks to the unwritten direction of the Rajiv government to all their embassies and consulates abroad not to grant passage to Bhagwan’s disciples. It is for the first time in many years that Bhagwan Shree will have to do without His caretaker Ma Yog Vivek and His personal physician Swami Devaraj.
Bhagwan’s plane landed at the Santacruz domestic terminal at 8.15 a.m., although it was expected much earlier. Wearing a flowing green robe and a stone-studded head gear Bhagwan looked fit and beautiful.
Coming out of the airport Bhagwan was asked by waiting pressmen if He had returned to India for good. Bhagwan’s answer was significant: “This does not seem to be a country to come for good, where even an Indian is detained as a tourist for three hours.” Later He is reported to have observed, “Rajiv government is run by premature and bogus people and it should go.”
From the airport Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh was taken in a Mercedes to the home of Swami Suraj Prakash Bharti in the 10th street in Juhu where He is staying for the present. Ever since His arrival here the whole locality has turned orange with hundreds of sannyasins and lovers coming daily for His darshan.
Every day He meets the press in the morning and addresses His Sannyasins in the afternoon.” (Rajneesh Times, India. 11.08.1986)
Jyoti remembers Osho’s arrival in Bombay
“On the morning of July 31, 1986 Osho arrives back in Bombay. Swami Suraj Prakash has a beautiful bungalow named “Sumila” near Juhu Beach and the first floor is vacated for Osho to be guest there till some other place is arranged for Him. News of Osho’s arrival is kept secret for His security and only eight to ten sannyasins know. Four of them go to the airport to receive him and four stay at Sumila.
After a long wait, Osho’s car arrives at about 10:30am at Sumila. He is sitting in the back of the car with Ma Neelam. I feel overjoyed to open the door of His car and welcome Him to India. After opening the door I stand by the side with folded hands. He slowly and gently comes out of the car and pats me on my hand saying, “Hello, Jyoti.” He looks very fragile. I keep gazing at Him for a moment unable to say anything. He turns and starts walking to the house. Somehow the news media arrive and cameras start clicking. I walk behind Him and realize how slim and weak His body has become.
After having lunch He needs to rest and Neelam brings the message that He will meet us at 3:00pm. Somehow the news of His arrival has started spreading and at 3:00pm the big living room on the first floor is over-packed with His lovers.
Osho comes out in his white robe without wearing a cap. He looks very fresh and radiant, namastes everyone and sits in a chair. The atmosphere is very light. Something unbelievable has happened. There is much laughter. Osho is sitting amongst us after many years. It feels like the old Bombay days are back.
From the next day Osho starts speaking every morning and evening. In the morning He is talking to the press people about His world tour and mainly the injustice of the American government.
In the evening for ten days He speaks in Hindi answering our questions. Soon sannyasins from all over the world start arriving. The sitting space is limited in Sumila. Arrangements are made in a hall where people can watch a video every day.
On August 16, 1986 a new series of discourses in English starts called “Rajneesh Upanishad”. Osho answers our questions mainly concerned with master-disciple relationship. This series of discourses is one of the best ones for me. He discloses many secrets of master-disciple relationship for the first time.” (Jyoti 1994, #94, p. 126)
Arriving in Bombay
“If the airport officials had been somewhat cool in their reception, the hundreds of reporters, photographers and sannyasins waiting outside were not. Bhagwan walked through the throng, smiling and namastéing, to the waiting Mercedes. From there he was driven the short journey to Juhu, and within minutes of his arrival at “Sumila,” Swami Suraj Prakash’s house, had been shown to his bedroom and immediately retired to sleep. Not for long. Two hours later, he called Neelam. He wanted to see his people. He started getting out of bed, dressed as he was in the white robe he used as a nightgown and without his hat, and made for the door. “Bhagwan, please wait! Let me look around the house a little first!” Neelam exclaimed. He sat down on the bed again, while Neelam quickly gathered a few sannyasins together to briefly clean the large sitting area just down from the corridor near his bedroom, and to let whoever was in the house know that Bhagwan planned to come out and talk. Ten minutes later Bhagwan emerged from his room – still dressed only in his white robe and hatless – escorted by a flushed Neelam to a chair in the sittingroom in which by now around forty Indian sannyasins had gathered. Cliff watched the scene. “I had never seen such happiness,” he said. “Bhagwan’s homecoming was so touching. He sat there and talked in Hindi to every single person in that room. I was close to tears all the time because they were all so blown away.” (Forman 2002, p. 397)
“On July 30, 1986, Osho returned to Mumbai after completing the world tour. His residence was arranged in the bungalow of a sannyasin friend, Suraj Prakash at Sumila, Juhu, Mumbai. After coming to Mumbai, on the very next day, Osho started giving interviews to the press and discourses in Hindi and English. Because of Osho’s back-pain a special chair was made for him in America so he could sit comfortably. That comfortable easy chair had still not arrived when Osho came to Mumbai. Therefore, Osho called for the chair, which he gifted to me in 1976, to Sumila to use it. When his new chair arrived, immediately he sent back the chair that he had gifted to me. I became very happy that Osho used his chair again for some time.
Osho stayed for short time in the bungalow of Suraj Prakash as a guest. During that time, according to his instructions, the search for a place for permanent residence for him was started, but a suitable place for him could not be found. He asked me about the beautiful place that he had liked before, which we had seen at Pali Hill, Bandra. However, many big buildings had come up there so now it was not suitable. On the other hand, it was not possible to stay for long in the bungalow of Suraj Prakash because of his family problems. So on January 4, 1987, Osho returned to his Pune Commune, which was built in 1974, after almost five and half years. There were every attempts made by police officers of Pune so that Osho could not enter Pune, but they could not be successful.” (Laheru 2012, p. 155)
Press conference in Bombay, 09.30 am, 31.07.1986. Excerpts:
“On the humid morning of July 31, on the morrow of His arrival in India, Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh held a press conference at His residence in Bombay which was attended by over a hundred men and women from the press world. Giving an account of His recent experiences with the western countries Bhagwan expressed His utter disillusionment with the affair of men who He thinks are no better than “monkeys fallen from the trees.” We publish here the full text of this eventful and memorable interview.
“With great pain in my heart I have to convey to you that the man that we have today is not worth fighting for. I have come with broken dreams, fictions destroyed, hopes shattered. What I have seen was the reality and what I have been thinking all my life about man was only his mask. I will give you a few examples, because the whole world tour will take almost a month to relate to you. So only significant points which can indicate…
Before me, from the East Vivekanand, Ramteerth, Krishnamurti and hundreds of others have gone around the world but no one was condemned by the whole world the way I have been condemned, because they all behaved politically. In a Christian country they would praise Christianity, in a Mohammedan country they would praise Mohammedanism. Naturally in a Christian country if a man from the East, who is not a Christian praises Jesus Christ as Gautama Buddha, Christians are happy, immensely happy. And none of these people have converted any Christians from the West to the eastern vision of things, eastern way of life. Meanwhile West has been sending missionaries and converting millions of eastern people into Christianity.
Perhaps I was the first person who has converted thousands of young educated, intelligent people into the eastern way of thinking and living. And that shocked the religious vested interests in the West, the political vested interests in the West to such an extent that it is unbelievable. I would not believe it myself if I had not gone through it. The whole European world has a parliament and the parliament has decided that my plane cannot land on any airport in Europe: the question of my entering their countries does not arise. I cannot land my plane for refuelling on their airports…
I don’t have problems with anybody, but everybody has problems with me. American Government has been pressurising Indian Government that I should be kept in India and I should not be allowed to go out of India – One. And second, no foreigners, particularly news media people should be allowed to reach me. These are the two conditions I cannot accept. I never accept any conditions. I am a free man and I would like to die a free man – even if it is by a bullet, it does not matter. But I cannot become a slave of such conditions. What is the point of living if I am living under conditions that I should remain in India and no foreign disciples should be allowed to reach me? That is almost killing me. That will be a living death. That’s why I left India before they were going to take away my passport. Because I wanted to move around all Christian countries and to make them aware that they can kill me but they cannot kill my spirit.
Now I am in India again and I will fight the Indian Government if any conditions are imposed on me. Foreign devotees will be coming to me and I will be going out of India in spite of the Indian Government. I have made my own arrangements. And this bogus Indian Government, you think, can prevent me? They should count their days. Just next election and they will be gone.”” (Rajneesh Times (India), 1986:17; The Last Testament. Vol VI, #5)
Hasya, Osho’s secretary on World Tour, recalls
“Hasya commented: “In my years with Bhagwan, I had always been very upset whenever he would talk about the pope or politicians because I had the sense that now I am on the spiritual path. I’m not interested in politicians; I’m certainly not interested in the pope. What did they have to do with me?
“For years I could not get it through my thick head why he – a spiritual being, an enlightened one – would even bother to talk about horrible people like politicians. I really didn’t get that understanding until after we left Rajneeshpuram and finally things began to click as to our whole conditioning. Suddenly, what was just an intellectual matter was turned into a day-to-day experience.”…
Hasya had been most involved in organizing the world tour, and it was she, perhaps, for whom the impact of the experience was the most profound. Certainly, she had some illusions shattered. “I had never had much of an attachment to any nationality because I’ve been a wandering Jew since age two. But America had truly become my country. After the world tour, whatever pride I had had in being an American citizen was terribly undermined in me. It was such an embarrassment, almost a shame, what the United States government did to Bhagwan,” she said.
“I wanted so much for Bhagwan to be in the West, and I thought that’s what he wanted. When I think of all those trips all over the world – it makes it so insane in my own eyes! It was as if the mind didn’t perceive something when it didn’t want to. I think I have some regrets about not being more intelligent and not seeing clearly at the time the impossiblity of what we were attempting. Something in me refused to accept the impossibility. Something in me desperately wanted not to believe what was happening.
“I don’t think I will ever quite understand why he went along with us. When I look back, in some way it seems he sacrificed himself to let us – at least me – find out for sure what this world is made of.”
The world tour was a lesson in seeing the truth of what Bhagwan had talked so much of: the power-obsession of the politician, who is more concerned with self-aggrandizement than his country or its people; the bigotry and small-mindedness of the priests; the insanity of a world which we have so successfully divided up into little cages called countries; the grip that the mentality of the old man has on the masses, and the threat that a new man very clearly is to the status quo.
I know I only felt closer to Bhagwan now. That was not simply because I had been with him as part of “the group,” but because seeing him being rejected by so many countries, experiencing being discriminated against because I was a sannyasin, polarized me.” (Forman 2002, pp. 411,412)
We may end this tumultuous part on Osho’s world tour by referring to another repressive event, happening in China some years ago and mentioned in ‘Age of Ambition’ by Evan Osnos (2014, p. 274). When in 2012 the authorities were trying to block all sites on the internet which were commenting on the anniversary of the Tiananmen Square demonstrations in 1989, users who searched Weibo – the Chinese microblogging website – were trying to circumpass the blockade of certain keywords by discussing in code and calling the events ‘the truth’ – zhenxiang. When censors eventually picked up on this they did their job rather efficiently and presented all users with this notable and memorable warning:
“In accordance with relevant laws, regulations, and policies, search results for ‘the truth’ have not been displayed.”
In the West we mostly do these things in fairly subtle ways, or – as we have seen during incarceration and world tour diplomacy – occasionally in less subtle ways just like in China.
6.9 Talks in Sumila, Bombay
All discourse series from Bombay are presented in Volume III / Bibliography / Bombay, where bibliographic data as well as excerpts from introductions and opening discourses are to be found.
On July 29, 1986, Osho returned to Bombay, where he was offered a residence near Juhu Beach. A short series of lectures in Hindi, ‘Koplen Phir Phoot Aayin’, were delivered from 31.07. am to 15.08. pm 1986. Then he started discourse series in English with ‘The Rajneesh Upanishad’ (1986) on 16.08.1986 pm. Discourses in Bombay continued in English for six months with the series ‘Beyond Enlightenment’ (1986) and ‘Sermons in Stones’ (1987) and ended on 29.12. pm, 1986.
Back in India
“BOMBAY – Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh is back in the teeming Indian city which served as His headquarter in the early seventies, giving discourses twice a day. He is staying in a private home in the Juhu district, where many Indian film industry people live. His morning discourse is in Hindi, with about sixty people packed into the living room where He speaks, another 200 crowded onto the porch, and motorized rickshaws lining the streets for block around. The evening series is for press reporters, is in English, and is called “Chit-Chat.” (Rajneesh. The Newspaper, 13.08.1986)
Neelam recalls flight to Bombay and the stay in Sumila
“The pilot was more than happy to have Bhagwan aboard. He was very helpful and friendly to us, and kept repeating how happy he was to have Bhagwan on board.
I was in Italy when I got the message to come to Portugal in order to accompany Bhagwan to Bombay with Mukti. I knew that this was to happen sooner or later, but was not really prepared for it! In Bombay airport we spent two full hours at the customs – although we didn’t have any luggage with us! When they saw our Indian passports they had to let us in. Still they kept us waiting a long time – not a very nice welcome to one’s own country. After two hours they admitted us. Prakash had offered his house and made his own sleepingroom available to Bhagwan. Everything had been prepared for Bhagwan, even the carpets were removed and things arranged as would suit Bhagwan most. However we are living there at present with the whole family so there is not much space at present. Bhagwan’s room and bathroom are very beautiful and he is very comfortable but unfortunately there is not enough space for me to be accommodated in the same house. Because of the inclement weather we did not want to hire a hall outside the house for discourses. At this moment he is either in his air conditioned room or in the room where he lectures, he does not go out for walks…
His daily routine is rather unchanged. He rises at around 7.30, takes a shower and a drink. At 9.30 he goes to the press conference and returns at 11.30. He returns to his room, has lunch and then sleeps for two hours. He wakes at 3 and sits with me for a couple of hours about anything and everything. Between 5 and 6 he has another shower and supper. He talks with me again until 7 when it is time for Hindi lecture. At 9 he goes back to his room and eats something and I read for him or he listens to music. Sometimes we talk in English sometimes in Hindi, and sometimes we struggle over making out what is in the Gujarati newspapers which he understands a little and me not at all!…
They have been following us from the word go! Bhagwan gives a press conference every morning to an Indian newspaper. Reactions differ, some are welcoming, others are not so friendly. Bhagwan hit the front pages of all the Indian newspapers after he arrived and even now there are daily articles and features.” (Neelam. In: Sannyas News, 06.09.1986)
Neelam on Sumila villa
“For the first three weeks after Osho arrived back in India – flying into Bombay on a chartered plane from Portugal – none on his Western people were able to be with him because they were all busy getting their various visas. This included Vivek, who arrived only after 17 days (and had changed her name to Nirvano.) And while Vivek wasn’t able to be there, I took over as his care-taker.
Osho was now a house-guest of Suresh Prakash at Sumila Villa in Juhu Beach, but there was limited space there. So during those three weeks, Osho and I stayed in the same room – I even used to shower in the same bathroom as he did and then clean up after myself so he could use it…
Osho was giving private meetings again in Bombay at that time because relatively few people were there.” (Neelam. In: Savita 2014, p. 202)
“Post-Oregon things had changed drastically and no one was willing to give a house to Osho for fear of opposition from politicians, fanatics and angry neighbours. Most of Osho’s wealthy sannyasins were hesitant and finally it was the punjabi businessman and ardent Osho devotee, Swami Suraj Prakash, also known as Suraj Prakash Manchanda “who said he didn’t care and stepped forward to invite Osho to his bungalow,” recalled Sarita Ma in an interview to the author.
Osho stayed in Bombay for five-and-half months at Sumila, the Juhu bungalow of Suraj Prakash who owned the Prakash Road Lines fleet of trucks for goods transportation. The family vacated the entire first floor for Osho and lived on the ground and third floors. Osho’s bedroom was on the first floor and he would meet his disciples in the evenings in a spacious hall, a few steps from his bedroom.” (Vaidya 2017, p. 72)
“Osho was the guest of a sannyasin who owned a beautiful house in a residential area in a suburb of Mumbai called Juhu Beach, and the multi-tiered living room was the perfect setting for his discourses. As there were more people wanting to see him than seats available, it was possible to attend the discourses only once a week. I therefore had to wait a few days before I could see Osho.” (Punya 2015, p. 338)
Heading: Quest for a Home
“The Juhu bungalow can at best be a temporary refuge for Rajneesh. Its owner, Suraj Manchanda, is a devotee but his wife and two sons were visibly perturbed at the way their home had been besieged by saffron-clad strangers. The Indian Government has opposed attempts to set up another ashram and foreign governments are not willing to grant visas to him, Reports of a search to rent a bungalow for him in Bombay were denied by advisers, though Rajneesh said: “Here (in the city) will be my resting place.”
After 30 years as the guru of the guiltless, laidback life, Bhagwan Rajneesh finds himself forced to become as itinerant as a Himalayan sadhu, even if it’s not wooden clogs that takes him around on what could now be an unending quest for sanctuary.” (M. Rahman. In: India Today, 31.08.1986)
“Meanwhile, Rajneesh was back in Bombay, where he first initiated disciples seventeen years earlier. He was staying at a sannyasin’s house in Juhu Beach, a neighbourhood of hotels, expensive private homes, and small multifamily dwellings where the poor live. At night he gave talks to 150 people in the house’s living room.” (Gordon 1987, p. 230)
Discourses in Bombay
“We later learned that the Master had stopped in Mumbai. After months of trying to establish an ashram in another part of the world, he finally had no choice but to return to India where, as an Indian citizen, it was hoped he would not be pursued. He was staying in the home of an Indian sannyasin, who opened his door to the Master in spite of the objections from his wife, who wasn’t a disciple and didn’t like this invasion. The house was in an upscale part of Mumbai called Juhu Beach, situated along an arm of the ocean that bathed the west side of this enormous city…
In August, 1986, at Juhu Beach, Mumbai, when he started talking again, after having flown the skies of the planet and been in half-a-dozen jails, Osho declared: “Now I finally have my disciples…”
When he pronounced these words we were crammed in the living room of the Indian disciple who offered his house to the Master. We were about forty people, of which only five or six were Westerners, and the rest Indians. In the following days, slowly, day after day, many old sannyasins arrived, and in the space of six months hundreds of devotees came back to the feet of the Buddha, having passed through one of the most intense spiritual devices ever to take place on such a scale.” (Rosciano 2013, pp. 272,257)
Heading: Bhagwan’s Host. A Portrait of Suraj Prakash
“Daily about 150 people come here, to experience Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh. People from all over the world, who want to share in his presence, his beauty and his love. Bhagwan lives as guest of Swami Prakash in one half of the house. Suraj Prakash has offered him the rooms, where he himself used to live. Since his “Guest” is here, Prakash feels richly gifted and overjoyed. Bhagwan once said in discourse that Suraj Prakash soon would have to move somewhere else, as he would take over the whole house. “He said that as a joke,” means Prakash, and laughed. We met with this fine, warm-hearted and humorous man in the garden of his house.
“Bhagwan used to live in the early days, for many years in the houses of his friends. But now it is the first time that he delivers such a long series of discourses as the “Rajneesh Upanishads” in a private house. How did it happen to me? I can only say… it is his love. When I heard the news that Bhagwan would come to here to Bombay we came together, a few friends and me, to prepare everything. We discussed where he should live and a few houses were possibilities. We decided that this is the right place for him. We looked at the situation from all angles. And I am so happy about it. There are no words to describe how happy and blissful I am, that he is here, and that he has presented me with this gift…
No, there are absolutely no problems, from neither side. The whole day people come here, to meet each other. They come from abroad and want to see Neelam (Bhagwan’s secretary in India). They want to get some information or to discuss something, all kinds of things. The whole day there are people here and in the evening about 150 come to discourse. The neighbours at the right-hand side of this villa ask me every week for an invitation, and the ones at the left hand side, in that villa over there, they also ask me. Across the road are some villas, where I’ve also sent invitations, but they didn’t react. No reply. So the reactions are mixed. In some papers they wrote that there’s trouble with the neighbours, but so far I haven’t found a single problem anywhere. Everything is very peaceful. Our people, the sannyasins behave very good.” (Sannyas News, 29.11.1986)
Back in Bombay
“Osho was staying as a guest in a friend’s house in Bombay and for the first few weeks I lived with Milarepa in a room which was to double as my laundry room.
Osho was giving discourses in the evenings to a group of about a hundred people, but this was to grow as sannyasins from the West arrived, most of them having not seen Osho since He left America. The discourses were titled “Beyond Enlightenment.” (Shunyo 1999, p. 214)
“I understood from what she was saying that Osho wanted to start speaking again as soon as possible and this was causing them quite a bit of turmoil about how to organize his discourse in the small space available… The room for discourse wasn’t big and no more than about 40-50 people could attend at one time, so it was necessary to ‘take turns,’ creating a waiting list to give everyone the possibility of seeing him. In the meantime, Neelam had become his personal secretary and had asked Nandi to take on the job of organizing the rotation of people who wanted to attend. For this we had to find a comfortable hotel that could serve as a meeting place for the sannyasins who would soon be arriving in droves… the Golden Manor Hotel, a fairly nice hotel with a garden and a pool and without many stars, accepted this agreement.” (Rosciano 2013, p. 283)
Maneesha recalls the discourses
“Within days hundreds and hundreds of sannyasins were pouring into Bombay airport, filling all the surrounding hotels. The sittingroom in Sumila was large – it must have seated about two hundred of us – but had never been intended, I imagine, as an auditorium. Needles to say, it was packed to overflowing every discourse…
On the evening of August 16th Bhagwan began a new series of talks or “meetings” as he calls the discourses, that would become the book, ‘The Rajneesh Upanishad’. Subsequent discourses made up the books that would be called ‘Beyond Enlightenment’ and ‘Sermons in Stones’. The first was a particularly potent discourse, being the first for many sannyasins for the past eleven months.
Ashok Bharti, a sannyasin from Jabalpur, had written a song in the beautiful Urdu language, called “Svagatam! or “Welcome” which he sang as Bhagwan entered the room, smiling, in namasté….
The song was both poignant and playful, the sort of melody that immediately embeds itself in the mind, or even seems to have already been there, like a half-forgotten memory.
Dressed in a beautiful white robe and hat, Bhagwan turned slowly, with his palms together to greet the roomful of sannyasins, and sat down.”
“My beloved ones,” he began. “You are blessed to be here today, because we are starting a new series of talks between the master and the disciple. It is not only a birth of a new book, it is also a declaration of a new phase. Today, this moment: 7:00 p.m., Saturday, the sixteenth of August of the year 1986 – one day this moment will be remembered as a historical moment, and you are blessed because you are participating in it. You are creating it, without you it cannot happen. Books can be written, can be dictated to a machine, but what I am going to start is totally different. It is an upanishad.”
The word means sitting at the feet of the master, Bhagwan continued, just allowing him to take one into his world. And that was the function of a mystery school.” (Forman 2002, pp. 401,404)
Vedant on Upanishads
“108 Upanishads (around 1000 B.C.) which are part of the ancient Vedic literature, are well known. With the latest research, the number goes up to 250. Prominent Upanishads are: Isha, Kena, Katha, Prashna, Mundaka, Mandukya, Taitariya, Aitariya, Chandogya, Brihadaranyaka, Shwetashvatara. In Amarkosha, Upanishad is defined as: dharme rahasupanishatsyat – the word Upanishad is applied in the sense of mysticism and esoteric religion. Literally, the word Upanishad means: sitting beside the spiritual master or the mystic for learning.” (Joshi 2000, p. 77)
Azima writes on first discourse in English at Sumila
“His beginning was incredibly dramatic. The question Maneesha asked was: “Beloved Master, what does it mean to be part of a mystery school?” After a long silence he slowly answered:
“My Beloveds, you are fortunate to be here today, because today is not only the beginning of a new series of discourses but also the beginning of a new phase and a day that will be recorded as a historical day. Today, Saturday, the 16th of August, 1986, here in the Sumila Building, at 7 o’clock in the evening, I declare that…”
He went on, speaking very slowly, saying that his big phase of preparation, begun at the end of the ’60s, was finished and that now he had with him his real disciples…
From now on, he would initiate a phase in which the Master-disciple relationship would be direct and for this reason these discourses were entitled ‘The Osho Upanishad’; upanishad means “sitting at the feet of the Master.”…
I saw Osho the next night. Coming in through the main door of Sumila, you went up ten steps that lead into a corridor. Along the left side of the corridor were private rooms and to the right was a large rectangular room where Osho’s chair was set up. Behind his chair was a tapestry with the design of a bamboo tree in Japanese style, occupying most of the wall. Sitting close together were about fifty people, most of whom were Indian…
He entered, slowly, as usual. He seemed to have aged a lot. His beard was a lot whiter and longer than when I had seen him last on the Ranch, when he was going up the stairs of the airplane that had taken him directly to prison in North Carolina.
As usual, He entered with his namaste greeting and slowly came towards his chair, looking at us with careful attention. He sat down slowly and after a few seconds of silence, which seemed like hours, he started the discourse. I closed my eyes, relaxed the body and slipped into that empty inner space that expanded like clouds in an open blue sky…
In all those discourses at Sumila, the intensity of the meditation was so strong that time was needed to recover, after which, in slow motion, we left the building, heading toward the local restaurants in silence or at the most exchanging a few words, always in a space of suspended time…” (Rosciano 2013, p. 285ff.)
From Maneesha’s introduction to the Upanishads
“For those of us present to hear Bhagwan’s announcement of the new phase of His work on August 16th, 1986, in Bombay, India, that evening and the ones that followed were made all the more poignant because many of us had not had the chance to be in His presence for many months. That time had proved, in fact, to be an invaluable experiment…
The most essential element of what transpired in these weeks is by its very nature transferable through Bhagwan’s presence, but unrecordable through His words. Yet here, the author of over four hundred volumes of discourses seeks again to express the inexpressible, to give us a taste of the ineffable, and a glimpse of that which can only be seen when one has become it.” (The Rajneesh Upanishad (1986). Introduction)
Video 4. The Rajneesh Upanishad. Opening discourse. Sumila, Bombay. 16.08.1986.
Opening discourse in this series ‘The Mystery School: An Encounter with the Miraculous’, on 16.08.1986:
Could You please explain exactly what the work of the mystery school is?
My beloved ones…
You are blessed to be here today, because we are starting a new series of talks between the master and the disciple.
It is not only a birth of a new book, it is also a declaration of a new phase. Today, this moment: 7:00 p.m., Saturday, the sixteenth of August of the year 1986 – one day this moment will be remembered as a historical moment and you are blessed because you are participating in it. You are creating it; without you it cannot happen.
Books can be written, can be dictated to a machine, but what I am going to start is totally different. It is an upanishad.
Long forgotten, one of the most beautiful words in any language, a very living word, ‘upanishad’ means sitting at the feet of the master. It says nothing more: just to be in the presence of the master, just to allow him to take you in, in his own light, in his own blissfulness, in his own world.
And that’s exactly the work of a mystery school.
The master has got it. The disciple has also got it, but the master knows and the disciple is fast asleep.
The whole work of a mystery school is in how to bring consciousness to the disciple, how to wake him up, how to allow him to be himself, because the whole world is trying to make him somebody else.
There, nobody is interested in you, in your potential, your reality, in your being. Everybody has his own vested interest, even those who love you. Don’t be angry at them; they are as much victims as you are. They are as unconscious as you are. They think what they are doing is love; what they are really doing is destructive. And love can never be destructive…
The Upanishads don’t belong to Hindus; they don’t belong to any other religion either. The Upanishads are the outpourings of absolutely individual realized beings to the disciples…
An upanishad is a mystery school. And we are entering into an upanishad today…
A mystery school is a very systematic encounter with the miraculous.
And the miraculous is all around you, within and without both. Just a system is needed. The master simply provides a system to enter slowly into deeper waters, and ultimately to enter a stage where you disappear into the ocean; you become the ocean itself.” The Rajneesh Upanishad (1986). Chapter 1, pp. 2,6,10,11.
Answering question on Tagore and the Upanishads in Poona Two
“Chandra, Rabindranath Tagore, although he belongs to this century, echoes thousands-of-years-old longings and dreams of the East. He belongs to the seers of the Upanishads. He is the only man this century has produced whose words can be compared to the five-thousand-year-old Upanishads.
Those Upanishads were songs of the first seers of humanity, but it is a strange fact that truth remains the same. Everything changes, but the truth is eternal. Five thousand years of distance, but whereever Rabindranath sings, appears to be coming from the days of the Upanishads, of those days of humanity’s childhood – so innocent and so pure.
Man was not yet corrupted by religions, organized faiths; man was not yet under the slavery of the priests; man was not yet divided into Hindus and Mohammedans and Christians and Jews. Humanity was still one. The seers of the Upanishads were as innocent as every child is – it was easy for them to sing those beautiful songs of tremendous meaning. But for Rabindranath, being a twentieth-century man, it was certainly a miracle that he dropped five thousand years of knowledgeability and became a child again. Every mystic has to become a child again.” The Razor’s Edge (1987). Session 7, p. 90.
Hasya writes: Letter from Bombay
the monsoon is over and Bombay is not so hot and sticky as it was only a month ago. Bhagwan is well, and with the initial acclimatization behind Him, the most difficult period is over.
The discourses of the “Rajneesh Upanishads” have a slightly different format. Rather than answering a random selection of questions on varying topics, Bhagwan is answering questions on specific subjects over a period of several evening.
So for the past two weeks, He has been talking on meditation, this will be followed by answers to questions on the master/disciple relationship, and so on.
As seating is very limited, due to the size of the hall, should you wish to visit Bhagwan, to save disappointment later, bear in mind that it might not be possible for everyone to attend every discourse. For those unable to get into discourse each evening’s discourse is shown the next morning at a nearby hall. Also, as there is no organisation set up in Bombay, friends will be responsible for accommodating themselves and making all the necessary arrangements for being in India.
It is requested that any personal letters to be sent not to His residence in Bombay, but to Geneva, from where they will be forwarded. The address for mail see box at the same page.
Ma Prem Hasya.
[Inserted in box]: Ma Prem Geeta. P.O. Box 248 (Rive). 1211 Geneva 3, Switzerland” (sannyas info, October 1986)
Veeresh recalls discourses
“Premdip and I went to Bombay and we managed to get to the area where he stays. I got a pass that allowed me to go to every evening discourse, and I was really happy. Premdip got a pass that allowed her to go every other night, because she wasn’t a big shot!
If you have a pass, you have to be on time. Everybody lines up and you sit for an hour on your ass on marble in the open air with music in the background, and that’s just getting ready.
About ten minutes to seven the Indians who are in charge start sending people upstairs. They do it in a special way, because they want the flow to be nice: they don’t want jam-ups. When everybody finally gets upstairs, it’s crowded. You are sitting and you don’t have leg space, and you know that for the next two hours you are going to sit like that on a marble floor, while the Old Man talks.
It’s hot inside. He has two big lamps on his chair and you wonder how he can take this heat, because there is also a video camera in front of him. But he has this machine, which I found out is an air conditioner. He has this big machine next to his chair, and he is very cool.
I was sitting there, and Osho came and sat down, and every time he would say something, he would look… AAAH…” (Veeresh 1990, p. 138)
Audio 1. Ashok Bharti, a sannyasin from Jabalpur, had written a song in the Urdu language called Svagatam! (welcome), which he sang as Osho entered the hall for his evening discourse at Sumila, Bombay. From album: Swagatam. The Songs in Bhagwan’s Presence (1986). Track 01. 4:33 min. In progress.
Heading: On singing for Bhagwan
“In Bombay, Swami Ashok Bharti sang for Bhagwan every day, accompanied by Swami Nataraj from Cologne who plays the tamboura. Ashok Bharti has been a sannyasin since 1972, but has known Bhagwan since 1966. The Dutch Rajneesh Times interviewed him recently:
“Every day I melt more with my Master. When I was first a sannyasin I just wanted to become myself. But since I sing for Him every day, I seem to be disappearing more into Him.
“I asked Bhagwan a question about my becoming more feminine: “Bhagwan, always when I sit in front of you, I feel my breasts swell. They are so beautiful, more beautiful than anything else on earth. And then I get tears in my eyes, so beautiful they are. I feel so feminine towards you. Is this something that can happen between a master and a disciple?’
He answered that this is an unique experience; that only Ramakrishna has experienced the same thing.
“My master is my most beloved on earth. In Hindi we call this ‘pia.’ In every song I use the word pia. If I feel pia then I feel my most deep feminine feelings for Bhagwan.
“My songs are songs of devotion. In every song I describe the beauty of my master; how beautiful He is, how empty He is, how ecstatic He is…”
(A translation of one of Ashok Bharti’s songs follows.)
Oh, my innocent soul, / you are so in love / with Rajneesh, with your master. / In this garden of love / you blossom with songs / about your Beloved. / The garden of my most Beloved / is full of fragrances. / The sweet fragrance / of my master / makes the flowerseeds of / my soul burst open. / The melody of my beloved master / becomes the musical instrument / on which my soul plays… / In the darkness of the night / My master is like the moon. / I am as a moonbird; / I see only the moon, / I forget myself and all His words. / In the morning, when the sun rises, / the earth is shining full of light, / the flowers are opening up / and bow down for existence. / The singing of the birds / gives us the message that life is only there / to sing a song of celebration.” (Rajneesh. The Newspaper, 04.02.1987)
Osho commenting on music played before discourses in Bombay
“In the East, music has always been part of meditation. Temples have been full of music and dance. Ashok Bharti loves me. His music is just a communication of his love. He pours himself totally into it. The same is happening with the other sannyasin musician who is present today. They are not just technicians, they are not singing because they are paid. They are singing out of love, out of gratitude. Their singing is just pure innocence. And their words are not just words – they mean it. And because they mean it, they can touch your heart, they can transform your heart.” Sermons in Stones (1987). Chapter 16, p. 392.
“There is a difference between an ordinary song and a sacred song. The difference is not of words, the difference is not of composition; the difference is somewhere within you, not in the song itself. One can sing a film song in a sacred way, then it becomes a bhajan. And one can sing a so-called sacred song in such stupid way that it becomes very mundane. My emphasis is always on you, not what you do but what you are. From you comes the quality. You are the source, the song becomes what you are…
For a song to be sacred two things are needed. One is silence in your heart. That is not possible without meditation. And the second is blissfulness. Silence alone won’t do. It may be there but it will not explode into songs. When silence and bliss meet then there is bhajan, the sacred song. The meeting point of silence and bliss creates a miracle; your song has something of your silence and something of your bliss together. Then whatsoever you sing… you may simply utter nonsense words but they will have a sacred quality.” The Book (1984), Volume III, p. 245; I’m not as Thunk as You Drink I Am (Not published; text on Osho Books on CD-ROM)
Abhiyana writes that Ghulam Ali was Osho’s favourite ghazal singer whom he listened to in Poona One. (Abhiyana 2017, p. 208)
Meera singing bhajans
“She could not read or write Hindi at all. But Meera sang all her songs to Indira Devi who transcribed the words through automatic writing. The Harakrishna Mandir has published the 800 devotional songs or bhajans in a series of six books titled, Shrutanjali, Premanjali, Sudhanjali, Bhavanjali, Deepanjali and Ushanjali. Mystics such as Sri Aurobindo, Mother, Osho, then President of India and renowned philosopher Radhakrishna, famous saint Gopinath Kabiraj, Papa Ramdas and Krishnabai among others have authenticated these songs. These songs are being broadcasted from the All India Radio and Doordarshan TV as Meera’s bhajans. Acclaimed singers around India have started singing these songs as well.” (Arun 2015, p. 182))
Discourses at Sumila
“ashok bharti is singing… a long white beard such passion and love in his voice a rhythm of love flowing… the air becomes absolutely still all eyes turn bhagwan enters beaming with a smile i see him walk with such drunkenness and awareness at the same time gently namaste with twinkling eyes glide into his chair.” (Rajnish 2008, p. 94)
“In the late afternoon I joined the people who were already sitting on the bare concrete floor of the car porch below the house, forming a typical English zig-zag queue. I was soon going to see my master, after more than a year! My heart rate increased and my awareness got sharper. Manu came to pick us up. Winding steps brought us up to the hall and I was assigned a seat. In silence we waited for the magical stroke of 7 pm. Osho greeted us as he walked along the corridor. He held onto Neelam’s hand when he came down the few wooden steps, still with one hand in namaste. He joined his hands again when he reached the chair. I wondered if he noticed when old faces reappeared in his audience. Was I one of his old faces? But I knew that I was thrilled to see him alive and kicking, to see him so close that I could hear the rustling of his robes.
As soon as Osho was seated in his chair, Ashok Bharti, a small-boned Indian sannyasin, grabbed his hand drum and accompanied his song with a clicking snap of his middle finger. I was told that he was singing his own songs and that every night he came to discourse with a new devotional song. One part of me must have heard the words Osho was speaking but I could not remember a single word afterwards. It was more of an imbibing of his presence rather than a listening to his words.
The discourse ended; namaste to all of us and namaste back to him… it was the last time I saw Osho in Mumbai. He came down with a cold and all further discourses were cancelled.” (Source yet to be verified)
Excerpt of interview: Impressions from Bombay
“Bhagwan looked great and in very good health… and Neelam, who seemed to be looking after him, looked very happy. There didn’t seem to be any particular personalities involved around him which was refreshing; just people getting people into the room in an orderly way. If you are a visitor you get 3 vouchers. Each voucher entitles you to one lecture. You can get really quite close to Bhagwan physically. When he comes in he looks at everyone literally – the room is not so big. After you’ve been 3 times its generally accepted you leave. Everything is low key. Indian sannyasins wear orange and the mala in discourses but nobody else…
We wait at 6 PM to get in, everyone meets outside. Then inside there is an Indian guy singing along with some beautiful classical Indian music. Apparently there are 75 people who attend regularly each evening and around 20 western visitors on a rotation basis each night.
It was really great the whole thing, quite something for a two week vacation. The last time we were there we saw Vivek and Devaraj. It was nice to see them and realize they were back with Bhagwan – and in India – but for how long who can tell.” (Sannyas News, 20.09.1986)
“Bhagwan talks from 7-9 in the evening. Ma Nandan gives out tickets at the Golden Manor Hotel. There’s a relaxed organisational feel to things. There’s about 120 people a night, 1/3 westerners. Bhagwan always takes questions, not sutras. Sometimes the questions were given at 3.00 pm and answered at 7.00 pm….
At any one time [there were] about 100 sannyasins. About 70% German! There seemed to be quite a few Sannyasins who had already been in India and ended up in Bombay when they heard.” (Sannyas News, 19.10.1986)
Osho on the Nobel Prize
“One of my sannyasins is a Nobel Prize winner. He told me, “I was not so much interested in winning the Nobel Prize for myself. My whole interest was this, that only a Nobel Prize winner can propose another name for the Nobel Prize and I wanted to propose your name. And that was my only desire, that if I can get a Nobel Prize then I will be the proper person to propose your name.
He received the Nobel Prize and immediately, that same day, he talked to the president of the Nobel committee, gave a few books of my discourses to him and said, “that if this man does not get the Nobel Prize, it will be an insult of the prize itself”. And the president said, rather whispered in my ears:
“Never mention this man’s name in the committee. Because you have got a Nobel Prize, you can mention His name, but you can never get the votes. Nobody is going to support His name. I have read all these books and most probably every Nobel Prize winner has read all these books, but nobody will mention His name. It is dangerous to be associated with Him, to be so deeply associated that you propose his name for the Nobel Prize.”
He was shocked. He said to me, that I could not believe my own ears. And all joy that I had, because I had become a Nobel Prize winner economist disappeared. It is sheer politics. There is no question of judging quality, merit. The whole question is: how is it going to affect the political atmosphere. And the president said to me that ‘that man is dangerous. You should not mention His name, otherwise you will be condemned.’ The Rajneesh Upanishad (1986). August 26, 1986.
Birthday celebration and discourses at Sumila
“At the discourse on the day of Bhagwan’s fifty-fifth birthday, on December 11th, there was not enough room to accommodate anywhere near all of us. Over the past few months, so many sannyasins had arrived that many of them could only attend discourse once a week. Suraj Prakash’s house was virtually flooded with us, sannyasins spilling out over the staircase near the discourse room and downstairs into the garden…
The Bombay discourses were unique – just as had been those in Uruguay, and before that, those in Crete, in Nepal, in Kulu-Manali. I had seen Bhagwan now against so many different backdrops, under so many different circumstances, and each time that experience only became richer, more profound. He seemed to go from strength to strength, to be evolving. Having introduced the advent of the mystery school while we were in Uruguay, he was now announcing it to the rapidly expanding audience. With talk of new phases and a new university, he seemed to be taking us on a whole new wave of energy. He was unstoppable. For example, on the evening of December 25th he was asked to comment on the United Nations’ “Declaration of Human Rights.” The gist of his response concerned man’s hypocrisy and the fact that man has not yet evolved into any state approaching civilization. He then began to examine a few of the “rights,” in detail…
It was a phenomenal discourse – the kind that made me feel that history was in the making. I was amazed, not for the first time, at the evident facility with which Bhagwan can move from talking on the inner world – such as the mystery school, or the nature of our connection with him – to the outer, addressing problems to do with politics, economics, ecology and so on…
The two discourses together would make an amazing document, and one of us had the idea to make them into a booklet. This was, in due course published – the first of a whole series of compilations, covering a diversity of subjects, that would become immensely popular.” (Forman 2002, pp. 405-408)
“I don’t have any organization. Don’t have any holy book. I don’t have any mediator. I don’t have any interpreter. Whatever you see as organization is not organization, it is simply functional; it is just like the post office.” The Rajneesh Upanishad (1986). Chapter 24, p. 529.
“For three and a half years I remained silent because I was not interested in those people who were only intellectually interested in me, I wanted them to drop out. In those three and half years they disappeared. Then only the people were left who were not concerned with Heraclitus or Pythagoras or Gautam Buddha or Mahavira or Krishna – even if they all go to hell they don’t care, nobody bothers about them. Now I can talk to you directly and you are not intellectually oriented.
Those silent years disconnected me with the intellectually oriented people, because silence can keep people around me only if their heart is beating in the same rhythm as my heart. Hence, the new phase.
Now it is a mystery school. And I can talk without any reservations, without bothering whether you will be hurt, wounded, brainwashed. Now you are my people, and you have opened towards me without holding anything back.” The Rajneesh Upanishad (1986). Chapter 26, p. 575.
On wearing orange and mala
“Against the whole world, standing alone, it helped your courage, it helped your intelligence. It helped you to unburden all the past knowledge, traditions, religions. That phase is over. Now there is no need. The second phase of the work has begun.
I don’t insist that you wear orange clothes or mala. We have already made the whole world aware of the movement, of its philosophy, ot its approach. There is no need to go on struggling with the dead forever.
Now, if you choose to wear orange and the mala it is not my insistence, it is your insistence – then naturally its meaning and significance has changed. Now it is your gratitude, your love, your thankfulness for whatever has happened to you and is happening to you. Now it is not a statement to the world, but an indication to me. Now it is no more a struggle with the world, but simply a love affair with me. First it was my insistence, now it is your insistence.” The Rajneesh Upanishad (1986). Chapter 28, p. 615.
Heading: Bhagwan’s latest. The mala and orange again withdrawn
“During last week, Bhagwan said the wearing of the colours of the sunrise and wearing the mala were finished. A few weeks after Sheela left the ranch in Oct. 85, Bhagwan also announced that he wanted his sannyasins to wear all the colours of the rainbow and give up the malas.
In a lecture a week later, however, he commented, seemingly critically, on the speed with which some of those physically close to him dropped the mala and orange. In the same lecture, he said the Buddhafield was finished as well. “How do you like that?” he asked. The following day, however, he said even he could not withdraw the Buddhafield!
In another later lecture, he explained that the mala and orange were “optional” but they meant nothing. In yet another discourse he suggested they were toys which he had given sannyasins when toys were needed, and which should be given up with maturity.
It is not clear with the present statement whether Bhagwan is withdrawing the option, or maybe simply suggesting it is pragmatic within the Indian context.” (Sannyas News, 31.01.1987)
University of mysticism and mystery schools
“To me, god is not a person. God is simply a symbol, symbolizing all those values which are indefinable – available to experience, but not available to reason; available to the heart, but not available to the mind.
This adventure of creating a university of mysticism is to bring all those values back to humanity. This is not going to be an ordinary university. It is not going to teach all those subjects which are available to reason. It is going to help you to open yourself to all that which cannot be taught. It will not have teachers, it will only have openers, masters. It will not be situated in a certain place, it will have schools all over the world – I’m calling them mystery schools. All those mystery schools together will be the university of mysticism…
The University of Mysticism will be concerned with the supra-rational, that which is beyond the mind…
You are born to be mystics. Unless you are a mystic, unless you have come to know existence as a mystery – beyond words, beyond reason, beyond logic, beyond mind – you have not taken the challenge of life, you have been a coward. You have wings, but you have forgotten it. The University of Mysticism is to remind man about the wings that he has. He can fly, and the whole sky is his.” The Rajneesh Upanishad (1986). Chapter 29, pp. 627,626,628.
Letter from Ma Prem Hasya, dated September 12, 1986
shortly before leaving for India Bhagwan started talking to me about His vision of a new university, which would spread across the whole world – Rajneesh University of Mysticism – of which He said ‘our work is to help people become mystics and meditators’. For the next few days He proceeded giving out names for institutes, academies and schools, and with it He started naming directors and sometimes associate directors. I was amazed how He remembered everyone by name and remembered the type of work they had been doing…
How all of this will be grounded, where the institutes will actually function from, is up to the individual institutes and with time we’ll discover how it all works. It has been fun to call everyone. All responses were very, very excited and grateful for His remembrance and guidance. As of now I don’t even know where the Rajneesh University of Mysticism will have its home office or headquarters, but I am sure we’ll find out! There are still more Institutes forthcoming, but since we have all become such gypsies travelling around I have not yet been able to contact everyone. As they are contacted we’ll add on to this list.
Bhagwan also gave definitions of Rajneesh Meditation Centers, Ashramas or Communes. He said, that a Meditation Center is a place for people to come and meditate; an Ashram is small, up to 12 people living together meditatively; and a Commune is larger, over 12 people living together meditatively.
Ma Prem Hasya
Personal Secretary to
Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh.
P.S. Of all the Institutes here is one I know the address of – for the time being! Sannyas applications from now on can be directed to the Rajneesh Academy of Initiation, Swami Dhyan John. For the time being the address is: c/o Ma Prem Geeta, P.O.Box 248(rive), 1211 Geneva 3, Switzerland.” (sannyas info, October 1986)
The Rajneesh International University of Mysticism
“In an interview with Swami Prem Prasad, chancellor of the University, he said that the international university will not be a legal or social organization, but a unit of widely scattered friends. He said that Bhagwan said that everybody performing as a therapist, a group leader, a leader of an institute should put under their advertisements and their name – and He insisted upon this – ‘spiritually affiliated to the Rajneesh University of Mysticism.” And He said, “We are one, we are one energy, we are one university, we are one happening,” and everybody is participating and is “spiritually affiliated.” (Rajneesh. The Newspaper, 11.04.1987)
Azima on mystery school
“Osho continued to move with disarming simplicity into what became the last phase of teaching. This was his swan song, which lasted from 16th August 1986 to 19th January 1990, the day he decided to depart forever from any physical manifestation in this earthly dimension.
From that day in August, Osho opened the doors of his ‘mystery school,’ which was not, as esoteric intellectuals think, a secret place where few arrive after having discovered secret maps, in order to find learned texts that describe the secret life of the soul. It is simply an energetic space that can be experienced when the heart of the disciple is open to the energy of the Master.” (Rosciano 2013, p. 291)
Etymology of the word mystic
“The word “mystic” comes from a Greek root which means one who cannot speak – it is a beautiful word – one who suddenly finds himself dumb. He has known the truth, but in the very knowing of it he has become dumb. All words have fallen short. Grammar makes no sense any more, logic appears stupid. Language rather than communicating seems to be a hindrance. So those who have known those highest peaks of life, grandeur and splendour, are so wonderstruck that they fall dumb, they cannot speak.
Hence mysticism has another meaning: the secret doctrine – the doctrine which cannot be told but can only be conveyed in secret intimacy, not through logic but through love…
So another meaning of “mystic” is: something that cannot be said but which still can be transferred in an energy communication, in love, in intimacy… just like a flame that moves from one lit lamp to another unlit lamp.” God’s Got a Thing About You. Initiation Talks Between Master and Disciple (1983), p. 241.
Jayesh looking for a new location
“I understand Jayesh. He is saying that he is going mad… because for almost three months he has been away from me. His has been a strange story.
He was a successful businessman; then he got tired. He heard about me, read about me and came from Canada to be with me in the commune in America with great expectations that “Now I will be sitting and meditating.”
And the next day he was arrested with me, and we were behind bars. He told me, “Bhagwan, this is too much. I came to meditate… But in a way I am fortunate that from the very beginning I am with you. Although it is jail, it does not matter.” And then he was with me all around the world, being deported from this country to that country.
For three months he has been away – working for me. Certainly he must be going mad because he has been trying to find a headquarters for me. He works to the last – everything is complete – and then at the very end American pressure comes in…
Jayesh has been working, working, working for almost the whole year. It takes a month or two months to negotiate with the politicians and everybody, and when the final decision is about to be taken then immediately American pressure comes in. And it is not pressure, it is simply blackmail…” The Rajneesh Upanishad (1986). Chapter 22, p. 535.
“And you want to know if somebody asks you about my philosophical standpoint… It is not going to be that easy, because I see man as a multi-dimensional being. You will be able to state it standing on one foot, there is no need for sentences, but you will have to state ten non-commandments.
The first: freedom.
The second: uniqueness of individuality.
The third: love.
The fourth: meditation.
The fifth: non-seriousness.
The sixth: playfulness.
The seventh: creativity.
The eights: sensitivity.
The ninth: gratefulness.
Tenth: a feeling of the mysterious.
These ten non-commandments constitute my basic attitude towards reality, towards man’s freedom from all kinds of spiritual slavery.” The Rajneesh Upanishad (1986). Chapter 23, p. 548.
Looking at his hand before lecturing
“Beloved Bhagwan, Why do you always look in Your hand before You start answering the first question? Do I see it wrongly, or do You find the answer there?
My hands are empty. I don’t have any answer. You have questions; I don’t answer you, I simply destroy your questions. And before destroying your questions I have to look at my hand because it is not only with my language that I destroy your questions, it is also with my hands.
So I have to prepare them, to ask “Are you ready?” When they say, “Yes, master, go ahead” I start! Without my hands, I cannot answer you. They do almost most of the work. My words keep you engaged, and they go on doing the real work. So you are not seeing wrongly; you are seeing absolutely right. I look at them – not for answers, but just to see whether they are ready or not.” The Rajneesh Upanishad (1986). Chapter 27, p. 642.
In Sumila, Bombay, many questions were asked by old Indian sannyasins, e.g. Maitreya, Laheru, Jayantibhai, Narendra, unlike in Oregon and during World Tour where his listeners mostly came from the West.
Sundram writing from Bombay.
Heading: Anyway, you go on working with it.
“My impression being down there, is that he is more strong, more beautiful than ever, actually. The second day I was there I went to Bhagwan’s house and Neelam who is taking care of the mail and all the stuff was there and I gave her some pictures from the place here in Brædstrup [RISK center in Denmark] and she asked me a few things about it…
The following morning Ramateertha knocks on the door and tells me, “By the way, I had a message for you. You should go to Bhagwan’s house in the afternoon 3.30 freshly showered.” And my heart started bum-di-di-bum and I still acted a little silly and said, “Hey, what can that be…?” In the shower I got a prop in my left ear, I couldn’t hear a thing, you know, and when you can’t see either [Sundram is visually impaired], now I cannot even hear Him! In the afternoon I went to Bhagwan’s house and I met Prasad outside and I said to him, “You have to help me because I can’t hear a thing on my left ear, and he said: “Well, you just hear with the other ear.” No compassion at all!
We were four people who went in to see Him and as soon as we entered, He just waved me to sit at His feet and I was sitting so close to Him I could actually touch Him, and the first thing I said to Him was: “Bhagwan, You know it’s really terrible. This morning something happened to my left ear and I was so afraid I couldn’t hear You.” And He just said: “You’ll do fine!” And He was so sweet. And I actually did fine. I could hear everything. Then He was asking a lot of personal questions. He was talking about the Mystery School and about settling once in Europe. I said: “Oh, Bhagwan. You know I’ve been working on You coming to Denmark and investigating in You having a visa to Denmark.” And He said, “Denmark? Is it cold there?” I was a bit confused and Prasad answered for me. He didn’t give the best impression, but Bhagwan answered some questions about His World Tour before ending up saying to me: “Anyway, you go on working with it.” He is giving Europe a lot of energy and maybe funny things is going to happen in the future.
He was saying a lot and a few days later, after having gossiped a bit, I was called to Bhagwan’s house together with a few of the gossipers and we were told that already great rumors were going to Europe and may be it could damage Bhagwan’s chances of going there. We should not talk too much about it so even if I would like to tell everything I better not do it because we do not want to make any trouble, but it’s very exiting what is going on, so who knows…
As you can see from the videos Bhagwan is very healthy, very inspired and absolutely in a new phase and when He comes into the lecture hall there is really an atmosphere. He really transmits His silence and He answers the questions in such a loving, personal way, talking about being a disciple, being in meditation, being on the path, incredible…” (Sundram. In: sannyas info, December 1986)
Heading: Latest news from India
“BOMBAY – On Dec. 5, Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh ended 21 days of public silence and resumed his new series of discourses which began on Nov. 4, “Sermons in Stone.” His health is good and he is still enjoying the hospitality of Sw Surash Prakash and family in their Bombay home.” (Rajneesh. The Newspaper, 11.12.1986)
Discourses in Bombay
“Some years later, in 1986, Osho was staying in Juhu Beach near Mumbai and was giving discourses in response to questions asked by his disciples. This series of talks eventually became a book called Sermons in Stones. Many of the questions in that series had to do with relationships, the masculine and feminine, as well as ‘inner man, inner woman’ and I found them very interesting.” (Rafia. In: Svagito 2014, p. 327)
Osho was in his discourses ‘The Rajneesh Upanishad’ (1986) commenting on Sw Govind Siddharth’s enlightenment: Chapter 15, p. 303; Chapter 35, pp. 760-71: Chapter 36, pp. 790-97; Chapter 40, pp. 882-90. Here some additional sources from periodicals on the event.
Heading: Buddha Fulfils His Promise. Body Merges in Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh
“In a vision seen by Swami Govind Siddharth, on the last Guru Purnima day, July 21, Gautam the Buddha fulfilled his promise to come again after twenty-five centuries as Lord Maitreya. For this purpose Buddha, before his Mahaparinirvana, had left his mental Body in the cosmos which would find a suitable medium at the appointed time. In the early part of this century the theosophists had prepared J.Krishnamurti for this role, but their whole effort proved abortive. Ultimately Lord Buddha chose Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh and merged his mental body in Him. Confirming this merger on Sep. 23 Bhagwan declared that he would continue to give His own message.” (Rajneesh Times. India, 25.10.1986)
Editorial from The Rajneesh Times:
“The Wheel Of Dhamma Is Turning Again
“I see man enveloped in deep darkness. Man has become like a house in a dark night whose lamp has been extinguished. Something inside him has died. But that which has died can be revived, and that which has been extinguished can be lit up again.”
These are the opening words of the first talk that Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh gave at the first Meditation Camp held in His presence way back in 1964.
Twenty-five centuries earlier Subhuti had put a strange question to his illustrious Master Gautam the Buddha which has great relevance to the plight of the present man Bhagwan Shree referred to in His above quoted remark. Subhuti’s question is as under:
“Will there be any beings in the future period, in the last time, in the last epoch, at the time of the collapse of the good doctrine who, when these words of the Sutra are being taught, will understand their truth.”
And Lord Buddha’s response was stranger. He said:
“Do not speak thus Subhuti. Yes, even then there will be beings who, when the words of the Sutra are being taught, will understand their truth.”
What is still stranger is that exactly twenty-five centuries after this dialogue had taken place, in the year of 1977, Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, commenting on the Diamond Sutra of the Buddha said to His disciples:
“Now you will be surprised. This is the time Subhuti is talking about, and you are the people. Twenty centuries have passed. Subhuti has asked about you.”
And on July 21 of this year, the last Guru Purnima day, nine years after Bhagwan’s discourse on the Diamond Sutra, Swami Govind Siddharth, one of his senior disciples, saw a vision where Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh and Gautam the Buddha appeared together and then the Buddha bowed down to Bhagwan and merged His body in Bhagwan’s saying, “I have fulfilled my promise. I was to come again as Maitreya after 2500 years and I have come.”
Responding to this vision, which Swami Govind Siddharth had put in the form of a question on September 24 in Bombay, when Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh was unfolding His own Upanishad, the latter said, “Govind Siddharth. It is not a question. It is a realization, it is a declaration. Whatever you experienced was not a dream. Your whole life you might have been a dream, but this experience is absolutely reality.”
It may be recalled that Gautam the Buddha had promised that after 2500 years he would come again as Lord Maitreya. It was a very rare promise, no other Buddha had made such a promise before him. And for this purpose he had left this psychic body in the great void so it might find a suitable medium at the appointed time and appear in the world as Lord Maitreya to turn the wheel of Dhamma once again.
The leaders of the world-wide theosophical movement, who were interested in the regeneration of religion, had this information through some ancient scriptures and they assiduously prepared Shree J.Krishnamurti to be the right vehicle for the coming of Lord Maitreya. But as is well known Krishnamurti, to the great disappointment of his mentors, declined to play this role and became a teacher of his own kind.
Since then Buddha’s third body had remained in the great void looking for a right vehicle. And what better vehicle could there be than Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh who came on the scene much later than Krishnajee? Those interested in esoteric affairs must have been wondering if Bhagwan Shree, who is a Master of Masters in his own right and who makes a complete and radical departure from all past traditions, would condescend to accept this position. But it seems there exists some inner connection between Bhagwan and the Buddha about which men like Swami Siddharth alone can say anything. The mysterious interview that Swami Govind Siddharth, who is now a Buddha himself, had with Lama Karmappa in 1973 in Gangtok, definitely speaks of this connection. The Lama had said that Bhagwan was a Bodhisattva in Tibet in His previous life and his dead body is preserved in a golden case, along with those of ninety-nine Bodhisattvas, in some hidden cave in the Himalayas. Karmappa had even predicted this great event asking the trusted interviewer to keep it to himself till it really actualised.
Gracefully accepting to be Lord Maitreya, Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh made it clear in His inimitable way that He was not going to compromise with the past and that His message would remain His message.
The event is really great and significant in as much as it bridges to glorious epochs, two most beautiful Buddhas and two superb teachings. And above all, it heralds the turning of the wheel of Dhamma once again which the present world in the throes of a deadly crisis needs most.
We the disciples and lovers of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, celebrate this event with love, joy and ecstasy. The attainment of Buddhahood by Swami Govind Siddharth makes the occasion doubly celebrative for us. He is the first disciple of Bhagwan to have attained to this experience, which is of the highest in the world of spirit, in his life time. In the past six of us had been enlightened, but all of them had it at the time of their deaths.
Bhagwan Shree has said somewhere that whenever some one attains to Buddhahood human consciousness in general reaches a new high and the whole existence feels exhalted and celebrates it.
Bhagwan has said that it is not only Govind Siddharth’s enlightenment, it is ours too, and that we should partake of it and celebrate it.
“That should be the way of every disciple. With any one coming home a part of you has also come home with him. Recognize it.”
Some of us have felt the pang of envy, as for sure the scribbler of these lines felt, at the achievement of Swami Govind Siddharth, but it is part of the game and should be accepted sportingly.
Let us recall on this auspicious occasion the prophetic words of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh that He had said while decoding the meaning of the Diamond Sutra:
“The wheel that Buddha moved has stopped. The wheel has to be moved again. And that is going to be my and your life-work. That wheel has to be moved again.”
Let all the world know and rejoice that Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh the Buddha cum Lord Maitreya is turning the wheel of Dhamma again in a way it had never turned in the past.
Victory to Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh! Om Mani Padme Hum.” (Sw Anand Maitreya. In: The Rajneesh Times (India), No. 21, 11.10.1986)
(Note: On the front page of the issue mentioned is a drawing of Osho, Buddha and Sw Govind Siddharth. On page 4-5 is full text of his vision and Osho’s response to it).
Heading: My Journey has just begun. Interview with Sw Govind Siddharth
“Swami Narendra Bodhisatva: “Can you describe in some detail how Bhagwan Buddha’s third body appeared before you?”
Swami Govind Siddharth: “The third body of Buddha is his psychic body. And it is only the psychic body that can merge in some vehicle. Without this mental body merging is not possible. Therefore only the mental body has merged in Bhagwan’s energy. Bhagwan is an ocean. And hundreds of rivers are constantly merging in this ocean. Hence Buddha said, “This is the type of being in whom I can merge. Up to now there has been none other like Him.”
“We have seen that when Bhagwan talks on any sage we feel as if that sage himself is speaking through Him. If He speaks on Mahavir, He becomes Mahavir, and when He speaks on Krishna He becomes Krishna. Isn’t it a miracle that He can so easily identify Himself with very different kinds of seers? Even the ocean is not the correct metaphor to describe Him, because it is bounded. He is an unbounded ocean.”
Swami Narendra Bodhisatva: “What was the secret that Lama Karmappa shared with you and asked you not to divulge?”
Swami Govind Siddharth: ” Lama Karmappa had told me that the third body that Lord Buddha left in the great void could only merge in the person whose locket you are wearing with your mala. The time span of the mental body of Buddha is coming to an end. And there is no other person who can absorb it. But he asked me not to disclose this secret till it actually happened.
There is another point to be taken into consideration, and that is, the merging could not happen as long as Krishnaji was alive. Perhaps there was a lingering hope that it could happen with him. But coincidently this phenomenon took place within a year of Krishnaji’s death.” (The Rajneesh Times (India), 25.10.1986)
Interview with Siddharth
“Q. Sometimes I wonder… Bhagwan is now involved with His sannyasins and He tries to create some consciousness, but what is going to happen when He is no more here?
Siddharth: What I emphasize and what Bhagwan emphasize is meditation. And up to the moment that people go into meditation they will understand only the physical existence, so they can feel one with Bhagwan only as long as He is in His body.
But if they can be guided towards meditation, I think, Bhagwan’s physical presence is no longer a necessity, even without His body we will know that He is always with us.
He will always… He has promised – and He always keeps His promises – that He is with us whenever we remember Him. Whenever we say Bhagwan He is already there with us. And I tell you this from my own experience. He always keeps His promises.” (Sannyas News, 18.10.1986)
Osho did not speak in discourse in Sumila from 9-12.11.1986 and again from 14-30.11.1986.
6.10 Publishing and Editing
The political upheaval following Osho’s arrest and deportation from the United States in 1985 made it evident that sannyasins had to translate and publish books and other media by themselves, as doors to the publishing houses had effectively been slammed on the controversial mystic. And a tacit media ban on Osho evolved worldwide, not unlike the ‘Stop’ phase in Dynamic meditation. He was definitely not to be heard of anymore. End of story.
Maneesha was reading discourse questions and editing
“I edited over sixty of Bhagwan’s darshan diaries, sat at his morning discourse and evening talks for seven years in Poona, attended the discourses given to a small group in Lao Tzu House in Oregon when Bhagwan first resumed speaking in 1984, and then the subsequent discourses in Rajneesh Mandir; later I was present as the reader of the discourse questions each day on Bhagwan’s nine-month-long world tour in 1986…” (Ma Prem Maneesha. Evening session at RISK, Denmark. 29.09.2006)
Maneesha and others traveling with Osho on World Tour
“Osho always traveled with his English companion and care-taker Vivek/Nirvano and one of his secretaries – in this case Neelam, whom he had just made his secretary for India. Whenever possible, he also traveled with Mukti his cook, his English laundress Chetana/Shunyo and his English doctor Devaraj/Amrito, as well as his Australian transcriber, Maneesha, who took care of the recording and editing of the talks he continued to give whereever he went. There were always other people present, some of whom played an important role in trying to establish a permanent home for him, as well as several friends and helpers who popped up and disappeared as Osho moved around, and who would usually be given some kind of a function while they were with him.” (Savita 2014, p. 257)
Maneesha talks with Osho in Kulu-Manali
“And Maneesha, what work you will do?” he asked.
“Well, I could type up and edit the interviews,” I answered.
“Yes, you do that,” Bhagwan said. Then I went on to tell him of the work we editors had completed at Rajneeshpuram: all the discourses he’d delivered there were now ready to go as books to the printer’s as we had edited, checked and rechecked them thoroughly.
“Good… good, Maneesha,” Bhagwan murmured. “So you start your work here.”” (Forman 2002, p. 67)
Osho on publishing
“And I told you to spread the word because they are trying every hindrance to keep me from approaching people. But I will approach people. They are mediocre politicians: they cannot prevent me. They can delay me, but they cannot stop me unless some idiot goes absolutely mad and kills me.
In that case you have the word. And if I am not there, your responsibility becomes great. When I am here your responsibility is none; I can do it alone without any difficulty. But if I am not here then your responsibilities tremendously increase. Then each of you has to represent me, and we have to see how many people they can crucify.
But the word has to go out because the word cannot be crucified. Ways and means have to be found for the word to reach to every corner of the earth, to every human being who can understand.” The Path of the Mystic. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 34, p. 350. Punta del Este, 21.05.1986 am.
Osho on Maneesha’s editing
“Maneesha will also stop, she has just to finish her editing. She has got into a trouble because unless I stop speaking she cannot finish her editing – and I am not going to stop! But the work that I have given her will help her more than anything to stop. She may not stop because she has to finish the work – which will help millions of people to stop, but the words that she continually has to come across are bound to penetrate her more than anybody else.” The Transmission of the Lamp. Talks in Uruguay (1989). Chapter 44, p. 421. 17.06.1986 am.
Maneesha writes on her editing work in Kulu Manali
“Devaraj had left behind him a typewriter, and I now took possession of it, setting up a little office space on the dressing table in my bedroom. The machine was ancient. It weighed a ton, and the keys were so rigid that I had to slam each one down with such force that on several occasions I thought I would sprain a muscle in my arm. I must have worked off the same number of calories per discourse as if I’d played tennis for twenty minutes.
Apart from the physical exercise it afforded me, there were advantages to its being a manual typewriter. The electrical supply was erratic and often, as I worked during the evening, I would be plunged into darkness. I learned to have a couple of candles and matches at hand so I could continue transcribing by candlelight. In addition, the nights were now quite chilly, and without the heater in my room my fingers would be too cold to function. When the heater went off with the electrical shortage, I would wrap myself in the blanket from my bed.
Occasionally I’d catch sight of myself in the mirror: bundled up in a rug, one candle stationed either side of me, the monstrous typewriter in front of me, and earphones connecting me to a small, battery-run Sony “Walkman” from which I listened to the audio tape. Meanwhile, in the blackness of the night, the snow fell silently onto our little settlement snug in the Himalayas, and I felt like an eccentric novelist, or like Albert Schweitzer valiantly battling on with a mission in the middle of nowhere.” (Forman 2002, p. 74)
Maneesha transcribing in hilly and chilly Kulu Manali
“Ma Prem Maneesha, who arrived after the other Western disciples left, was transcribing the discourses at this time. She remembers freezing in her dark room with a shawl around her shoulders, transcribing discourses on a clunky old typewriter by candlelight. It was the dark night of the transcriber!” (Sw Satyam Anando. Introduction to Light on the Path. Talks in the Himalayas. 1988)
Editing in Kathmandu
“The room in which Devaraj and I were working became a hub of activity. We planned to transcribe and edit all the discourses that were based on sannyasins’ questions, but we couldn’t do the same with the press conferences; there was simply not enough time. So those we sent to the center in Cologne for safe-keeping until they could be worked on by someone there. Even so, if we were going to keep up with Bhagwan, we would need to make good use of the time we had between two discourses and the afternoon walk. It was a hectic time, and we thrived on it.” (Forman 2002, p. 112)
Osho talking in Kathmandu on publishing issues
“Several days later Bhagwan was asked what, in the absence of communes, would happen to those institutions that took care of his books – their production and distribution.
They should continue, Bhagwan had said. In fact we needed our own radio station – even, perhaps, our own television station – because the vested interests were going to be cutting off all means by which Bhagwan could communicate with his people. “Their fear is that my words will reach people. This is a great victory for us. That means they have an absolute certainty that they cannot argue: they have no valid arguments against me. Such steps are only taken when you cannot argue; otherwise, what is the need? So this is the world we are in – which is dominated everywhere by rotten ideologies that have no logical support.
“They will be trying to prevent us everywhere – and it is so easy. So before they start preventing us, we have to have our own arrangements. So rather than making a commune, my effort is now just to have a perfect publishing department for all the languages possible, a satellite somewhere so we can manage radio stations all over the world without any difficulty, and headquarters from where you can get all the information and through which people can be made aware of where sannyasins are.
“I will be living at the headquarters, and we will make arrangements for people so that they can come and be with me. If countries stop me from entering, then the only way is that I should be in some place where my sannyasins are close by, and they can come and be with me…”
At the time, I understood that Bhagwan was only making clear the worst case scenario. I didn’t think that there would be a concerted international conspiracy to separate Bhagwan from his people. My reality was Bhagwan’s discourses, meditating with him, and my work. I had little concern for what the next day might bring.” (Forman 2002, p. 151)
Osho talking further in Kathmandu on publishing
“The commune is no more, or, every sannyasin is the commune. But what about such institutions as the Academy, or Friends, which takes care of the publication and distribution of Your words? Do they still have a function, and how can they function?
They still have a function – and they will continue to function – but their function is not dictatorial. Their function is to serve the whole world of sannyasins and the people who love me. So their function is not to govern you, their function is to serve you.
And they are not organizations, they are simply institutes. And their function has become more important now, because for all the languages that books are being translated into, it has to be seen to it that they are not mistranslated – that the translation is right, that it does not harm the spirit of the message. So it is a great work to take care of all the languages – we need the publication institute to check all the language publications before they are published.
Now there are many countries… Just yesterday, a Korean woman was here, and she informed us that more than thirty of my books are translated into Korean, and thousands of copies are available in all the bookstalls all over the country. We have to take care of things. There are countries which are not members of the Bern Convention: they do not believe in copyright. Korea is one of those that do not believe in copyrights, so they can translate any book, publish any book. But we can at least keep an eye that the translation is done rightly, that the person who is doing the translation understands me. It is not only a question of copyright, it is a question that I should not be presented in a wrong way – which is possible. Because they are just earning money, who cares whether the translation is right or wrong?
So Friends International will be the headquarters for communication for all the sannyasins. If I am traveling around the world, then somebody, some agency, is needed to inform you where I am; otherwise I may pass through your country and you may not even know.
This is possible, because just now the pope has informed all the Christian publications in Italy, as he heard that I am coming to Italy, that they are not to give me any publicity – neither positive nor negative. They are not to even mention my name. Now, in Italy the pope has great powers – political powers – over the government and over the media.
We will need our own media, our own agencies, our own publications to inform you. And for any information that you want, you need headquarters from where you can get that information; otherwise it will become impossible even for you to find out where I am.
But their function is not to govern you; their function is to serve you, just to make me available to you as accurately as possible.
We may need our own radio station somewhere, we may need our own television stations, because these people are going to be cutting off all sources, so that I cannot reach the public. Now there are counties like Germany who have already made laws that I cannot enter their country. Others may follow in the same way if they see that I am traveling around the world. Then they simply won’t let me in. And there are political pressures, religious pressures. So we need our own independent media which can continue to inform you and other people – so these people cannot do any harm.
Now their only fear is that my words will reach people. This is a great victory for us. That means they have no valid arguments against me. Such steps are only taken when you cannot argue; otherwise, what is the need? So this is the world we are in – which is dominated everywhere by rotten ideologies that have no logical support. And they will be trying to prevent us everywhere. And it is so easy.
So before they start preventing us, we have to have our own arrangements. So rather than making a commune, my effort is now just to have a perfect publication department for all the languages possible, a satellite somewhere so we can manage radio stations all over the world without any difficulty, and headquarters from where you can get all the information – and through which people can be made aware of where sannyasins are.
I will be living at the headquarters, and we will make arrangements for people so that they can come and be with me. If countries stop me from entering, then the only way is that I should be in some place where my sannyasins are close by, and they can come and be with me.
So we have to have these small groups which are not a centralization of power, but are only functionally serving the whole sannyas commune around the world.
And now every sannyasin is a small commune.” Light on the Path. Talks in the Himalayas (1988). Chapter 28, p. 282. Kathmandu, 02.02.1986.
Maneesha working on Crete
“Within a day of my arrival, Devaraj and I had set about making a work space, checking that all the electrical connections worked so that we could transcribe discourses and then edit them, as we had done in Kulu-Manali and Kathmandu. By lunchtime we had the semblance of an office. Word that Bhagwan had arrived in Greece on a four-week tourist visa spread quickly in the sannyas world. Within days, around five hundred sannyasins must have been attending the discourses…
With Nishkriya still in Europe obtaining video equipment which he would bring to Greece, Rafia and Asheesh between them took care of the video and audio systems, and the making of discourse tapes.” (Forman 2002, p. 189)
On others copying from Osho’s books
“In the article that Anando has brought to me she has criticized me also. She has said that the moment her books are published, Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh’s books will simply disappear from the market, nobody will read them.
One thing is certain – that she is reading them! And perhaps most of her outpourings are from those books. Otherwise out of thousands of books why has she chosen only my name? It cannot be just an accident. She must be reading those books, she must be using the material from those books, and now she has to prove that those books are not right – because of the inner fear that she has stolen from them.
It is very significant that there are many writers around the world who are stealing words, sentences, paragraphs, whole ideas from the books – not mentioning my name because then they won’t look original; but they are afraid that somebody may find out that these are from my books so they have to do one thing more: they have to condemn me in some way, to balance. “This man cannot be stealing from Bhagwan, he is against him.” So they do both: they condemn, they criticize, and they steal.” The Transmission of the Lamp. Talks in Uruguay (1989). Chapter 45, p. 427. 17.06.1986 pm.
The Hidden Harmony sold out
“But existence functions very mysteriously. The day they arrested me in Crete, all the copies of the only book which is translated into Greek, ‘The Hidden Harmony’, were sold – just in one day. Not a single copy was available. So they may be thinking they are doing harm, but truth is something you cannot harm. Whatever you do somehow turns out to be a nourishment for it.” The Path of the Mystic. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 5, p. 62. Punta del Este, 06.05.1986 pm.
Osho on happenings in the Soviet Union
“The same is true about the Soviet Union. I have thousands of sannyasins who are underground. The KGB has been able to find out about two hundred sannyasins and they are persecuting them, harassing them. They have taken their books, they have taken their tapes, they have taken their videos…
There is tremendous appeal for me in Russia. People are handwriting books, typing books, cyclostyling books and spreading them underground. This is the only movement in Russia which is going underground, the only spiritual movement in Russia. Soon we will have enough people so that they will not need to be underground.” Socrates Poisoned again after 25 Centuries (1988). Chapter 4, pp. 46,47. Crete, 21.02.1986 am.
Publishing at Osho Boulder Meditation Center
“The roots of the current center are intertwined with those of Rajneesh Publications. When Rajneeshpuram folded in 1986, about 20 of Osho’s devotees who had been working in Publications moved to Boulder. The business was moved to Boulder because of the town’s central location in the US for shipping and its tolerance of other religions. A group of Tibetan Buddhists, headed by Chogyam Trungpa, has already established themselves here, and Trungpa had founded the Naropa Institute (including the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics, which attracted Allen Ginsberg, Ram Dass, and other alternative people).
I was one of the people who loaded Osho’s books onto huge trucks bound for a town called Louisville; just east of Boulder, in March of that year…
Shortly after, Bhasa and Hina came to Boulder and started publishing the Rajneesh Times [errata: Rajneesh. The Newspaper] newspaper here…
After Osho took His new name the center came to be called simply Boulder Osho Meditation Center. It moved from people’s homes to the office of Chidvilas, the new name for Rajneesh Publications. Sannyasins sold Osho’s books during the day and meditated in the office in the evening and on weekends…
We have a large library of Osho books that we brought from the Ranch and have added to over the years. oshoboulder.org (Sanghamitra. In: Viha Connection. 2009:2)
Dutch publisher withdraws from publishing Osho’s books
“One of the Dutch publishers, who has published a dozen books of my discourses in Dutch, wrote me a letter a few month ago saying, “Now you are talking dangerously. We cannot risk our publishing company. We are business people. What you were speaking before, we could manage; but now it is beyond us. So I will not be publishing any more books, and I want to be completely disassociated from you. And I am also not going to reprint those books. If sannyasins want to, they can take all those books at cost price; otherwise, I will keep them in the warehouse but they will not be sold. I simply don’t want to be associated with your name.” The Path of the Mystic. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 27, p. 284. Punta del Este, 17.05.1986 pm.
Ma Anurago explains that the publishing house mentioned was Ankh Hermes located in Deventer, Holland. As far as she knows the background was Osho’s remarks on Hitler, and on homosexuality. Those remarks had been mentioned in Der Spiegel, the German magazine.
Then, Ankh Hermes has thrown out its stocks to “De Slegte”, (a chain of bookshops that sells over-complete and second hand books). Actually, this worked out well, as many people could buy the books cheaply, and were inspired to go to Poona.
Then in 1987 we started with Osho Publikaties VOF, as there was no publisher (in Dutch language) any more. (Ma Anurago. Personal information. July 2018)
Osho on talks and the publishing of his words
“There is no need to remember what I say because I am not giving you a doctrine that you have to remember. What is important is that the feeling left in your heart that you were touched remains with you. That is significant – not what I say.
I say so many things just to give you that feeling that your heart is touched. That’s why I always say my talking is totally different from anybody else’s in the whole history of man. They were talking to say something; I am talking to do something. They were talking to impart knowledge; I am talking to transform your heart.
So there is no need to remember; otherwise you will go crazy. If you remember all these things that I am saying to you, you will certainly go crazy. Can’t you see me? I have gone crazy!
And I don’t remember anything of what I have said to you before. I have never read any of my books, and it is beautiful because then I am always spontaneous. And it is beautiful because I can easily say anything that comes in the moment, without bothering whether it is contradicting something else that I have said some years before. It cannot contradict because that was also as spontaneous as this is; the spontaneity of both links them together. Howsoever contradictory they may seem, they have come from the same spontaneous source.
Don’t try to remember. It is so easy to remember Jesus because there is not much – four gospels and all are the same report from four different journalists. There is not much difference. You just memorize one gospel and that’s it; you know the whole of Jesus. It is so easy.
With me it is very difficult. Christian missionaries have told me that I should write at least a small book like the Christian catechism as an introduction “because you have so many books – what should one read, from where should one begin? So just a small book to introduce yourself…”
I said, “That is impossible. You can start from anywhere – any book is the introduction for the remaining three hundred and ninety-nine. But catechism… that is impossible. I cannot put in a few words, a few principles so that you can remember them like a parrot.”
But it is very difficult for outsiders to understand that my talking is being used in a totally different way:
It is less a communication and more a communion.
It is less knowledge and more love.
It is less words and more silence.
So if you can remain thrilled, don’t be bothered with the words. They are not of any use. Their work is done. They have stirred your heart, they have made you aflame: they are no longer needed. If you try to remember my words… I have spoken so many millions of words that it is almost impossible for you to remember them at all, and the purpose was never to give you a doctrine, a philosophy, but a vision… and a vision is a totally different thing. If it opens your heart, if it cleanses your intelligence, that is more than can be asked.
Unfortunate are those who remember the words and nothing else happens to them. They will become parrots, scholars, pundits – but they will never become sannyasins.
To be a sannyasin is something unique. The heart is aflame with a longing for the unknown, with a love for the whole, with a song that cannot be brought into words. A sannyasin is himself the holy scriptures – not because he remembers the words but because he is transformed through the words. He is reborn.” The Path of the Mystic. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 44, p. 461. Punta del Este, 26.05.1986 am.
Answering a question from Maneesha
“So you may have listened to me for years, but still you will find me fresh, for the simple reason that I don’t have any remembrance of what I have said in all the yesterdays that have passed. I don’t exactly know what is going to be my next sentence.
These are not prepared lectures of a professor in a university or prepared sermons of a priest in a church. I am simply responding to your silence, to your questions, to the implications of your questions. You may have asked the same question thousands of times, but my answer is not going to be the same – because everything goes on changing. You have changed a lot, I have changed a lot. The question may seem to be the same, but it is not the same, because it is coming from a different person who have changed.
Ten years have passed; in ten years one cannot remain the same. And certainly the answer cannot be the same, because I go on moving each moment with life; I don’t lag behind. I have no investment in any system, I have no desire to be respected as a consistent thinker; I am simply playing with words. But my work is somewhere else; it is with your heart, and it is, every day, fresh.
So both is possible: from one angle you can see me as new; from another angle, as very ancient – you have always known me.
One more reason: whatever I am saying is phrased in a totally spontaneous way, but it contains the ancientmost truths ever uttered by a human being on the earth. So those who can understand can see that what I am saying has always been said by the mystics, and yet, every day I am saying something in such a way as it has never been said before. So there is a newness and freshness – and there is a deep, long ancientness in it.” The Transmission of the Lamp. Talks in Uruguay (1989). Chapter 1, p. 9. 26.05.1986 pm.
Reading and listening to Osho
“If you listen to me or read my words without bringing your own prejudices, without bringing in your own knowledge, your own so-called experience of life, then you will instantly recognize whether it is true or not…
Listening to me is just being available to a mirror. Reading me is just being available to a mirror. And what you will recognize as the truth in those words is simply a reflection of your own.” The Transmission of the Lamp. Talks in Uruguay (1989). Chapter 39, p. 374. 14.06.1986 pm.
A question from Maneesha on publishing
“In response to Anando’s question the other evening about your place in history, You told us to forget history and historians, to simply let them do their thing. But so much of value is contained in Your books which is being made available to contemporary people, and which could be part of a record of a whole different dimension from that which is conventionally regarded as history.
A new record could be compiled of the real history: the evolution of man’s consciousness beginning with primeval man and the first hints of man’s awareness of himself, taking in all those who have become awakened, all mystical scriptures and documents, and culminating in You and Your work.
Of all the masters, You have the most eclectic and comprehensive record of Your own evolution in consciousness – from those days immediately following Your enlightenment. Your days of travelling around India, to Bombay, Poona, Oregon, and now, the World Tour.
In addition, the questions You provoke in us, Your disciples, outline the process of our growing consciousness, and are, in themselves, another unique aspect of Your work.
Bhagwan, we have already forgiven You for not allowing us to forget You. We, Your editors, just want to ensure that Your words and the fragrance that You are haunt people for generations to come and drive them totally sane!
“That is your problem.
Next question.”” The Transmission of the Lamp. Talks in Uruguay (1989). Chapter 42, p. 395. 16.06.1986 am.
Maneesha on her editing work in Uruguay
“Our days were very busy. As in Greece and Nepal, Devaraj’s and my routine revolved entirely around discourses. We were lucky because we’d been given what must have been the caretaker’s cottage in which to live and do our work. When I stood at the doorstep and gazed upwards, it was to look directly at the wooden shutters of Bhagwan’s bedroom opposite us. We filled the entire space of the little livingroom-cum-kitchen with tapes and equipment and typed discourses. We must have seemed eccentric, even to the others, because we were constantly talking or thinking about or working on Bhagwan’s discourses. “Do you think the comma should go here – or there? If we put it here, it slightly alters the meaning, whereas my feeling is he meant…” “I can’t make out this phrase – could you double-check it with the audio tape?” “What do you think about this for a question I could put in for discourse?” “Do you remember him talking on dreaming when we were in Poona? – because last night he said something quite different…” – and so on, endlessly.
We were saturated with Bhagwan’s words – sitting in his presence twice a day while he spoke them, and then, outside that time, typing the discourses, checking for accuracy the typed discourse with the audio tape and then beginning to edit them, putting in commas and semi-colons, and correcting our spelling. In addition, we needed a constant supply of questions from everybody…
Kirtan had been in Greece and was then invited to Uruguay to type the discourses, as Devaraj and I were no longer able to keep up with Bhagwan – as if we had ever been able to!” (Forman 2002, p. 339,346)
Editing in Sintra, Portugal
“Devaraj and I also set up our work space, and began working on the Uruguay discourses, conscious that any day discourses might recommence so this time in which we could catch up was precious.
We had made fair inroads into the discourse manuscripts when it seemed discourses were going to be resumed. I had questions left over from our Uruguay discourses, and collected them together ready for Bhagwan to see…
We were all ready – and then suddenly, Bhagwan would not be giving discourse after all. He was not well enough.” (Forman 2002, p. 385)
Editing ‘Gold Nuggets’ in Portugal
“I had only seen Bhagwan once since I had arrived, when I was called in to see him about the discourse books…
I remained in Sintra and, along with Devaraj, took care of the food for our now diminished group. When we had time free from the kitchen, we began a new project to do with Bhagwan’s words. We planned to compile a book of quotations taken from discourses given over the period of the whole world tour thus far. Bhagwan liked the idea and gave us a title for the book: ‘Gold Nuggets’. Perfect! That was exactly what the book would be – a gold mine of priceless pieces straight from the master’s mouth.
We began reading through the discourses, scanning them for quotations from one line to several lines long, on a variety of topics. We selected material on the sort of issues that touched not just seekers but the man on the street: love, anger, jealousy, fear, death, sex, silence, and so on. I saw the book as a kind of primer or hors d’oeuvres for people who had not read anything of Bhagwan before and wanted something easy to read and digest, something that didn’t ask for the same commitment as reading an entire discourse book does. It would be an ideal gift for sannyasins’ parents, and I envisaged it as being a small book, perhaps with illustrations – very aesthetic and pleasing to the eye.
Selecting gems for the book in this manner, I was overawed once again at the beauty, the simplicity, the depth and magnitude of Bhagwan’s expression. Such an incomparable ability to unlock puzzles about our interior world! His explanations never explain away, but only enhance the intrinsic mystery of existence.
‘Gold Nuggets’ would be the kind of book someone sitting in their study in a secluded old cottage in Devon might put together over the course of a year. Yet we were compiling the spontaneous utterances of a man spoken to his disciples while politicians noted his every move and police surveyed the very house in which the talks had been given. Scattered liberally throughout the discourses were maxims, the nature and the power of which, had any country heeded just one, it could be totally revolutionized. A man not only without a cottage but without even a country to call his own. This book had to be dedicated to that kind of courage…
Devaraj and I continued our work on ‘Gold Nuggets’. It was now at the stage where we could lay out the over two hundred quotes on the huge walnut dining table in the very grand banquet hall upstairs and work out which quote should follow which. Once the manuscript was complete there was no reason for us to stay in Portugal.” (Forman 2002, pp. 388,387,400)
Laheru recalls from Sumila
“During discourses in Sumila, I had sent some questions to him. During the answer of one of my questions, Osho had gifted to me a beautiful frame called ‘Mind and Meditation’, which was brought from Germany by Osho’s sannyasin, ‘Nivedano’. Osho had explained about it during the discourse. It is published in Chapter #8 of his book, ‘Osho Upanishad.’ Video CD is available for this discourse. Osho’s discourses of Sumila, Mumbai, are published as ‘Koplen Phir Phoot Aayin’ in Hindi, and ‘Osho Upanishad’ and ‘Beyond Enlightenment’ in English.” (Laheru 2012, p. 156)
Maneesha on the publishing of Basic Human Rights
“For example, on the evening of December 25th he was asked to comment on the United Nations’ “Declaration of Human Rights”… The two discourses together would make an amazing document, and one of us had the idea to make them into a booklet. This was, in due course published – the first of a whole series of compilations, covering a diversity of subjects, that would become immensely popular.” (Forman 2002, p. 408)
“When the ranch broke up Rajneesh Foundation International wasn’t able to continue looking after all the things they had been looking after with regard to the books and so Rajneesh Foundation Europe took over the copyright and the activity of publishing. Some of this work is being done in conjunction with Rajneesh Verlag in Cologne.
The Rajneesh Upanishad is the first book published after the year of Bhagwan’s World Tour. The production team from Rajneesh Verlag, Cologne, wanted to bring it out before Bhagwan’s birthday, quite a task! The work begins with the video. A transcribing copy is run off from this, though some transcribers prefer to work direct from the video so they can see Bhagwan’s face at the same time.
Ma Deva Sarito proofread and wrote down word for word what Bhagwan said. “When I began here in publishing we had so much work to do. None of the discourses from Punta del Este, Uruguay, were written down. This is how we worked. First Ma Kirtan (the world’s fastest typist) put the audiotape into computer. Then Ma Taranga and Ma Pratito checked it through word for word to make sure we were actually working on what he said.”
“Bhagwan’s speech is a very delicate affair. He speaks spontaneously rather than in any regular sort of way. I went over the tape recording correcting it as little as possible. Bhagwan is more a poet than an author of prose. My criterion for correcting is that I go over the work I have done and if I cannot imagine his voice anymore then there is a mistake in the corrected editing.” As Ma Prem Arup also said, ” The editing is mainly punctuation and paragraphing and very occasional changes are made because the spoken word doesn’t actually read well on paper.”
And now, Beyond Enlightenment – the book of talks given to the Rajneesh International University of Mysticism in Bombay between October 3 and November 4, 1986, is due out in mid January and should be available in the UK shortly after that. There’s also The Rajneesh Bible, Vol IV coming out at the same time. After what, for us in the UK sometimes feels like periods of starvation, it’s great to have these books coming steadily from our friends in Cologne who have poured all their love into these beautiful presented books.” (New British Rajneesh Times, January 1987:5, p. 12)
Gordon writes on publishing
“Bill Whitworth, of the Atlantic, commissioned the article on Rajneesh and his disciples that eventually grew into ‘The Golden Guru’…
Most of Rajneesh’s books in English, video and audio tapes of some of the discourses, and audio tapes of his meditations are available from Chidvilas Publishing, Boulder, Colorado. Two volumes of ‘The Book of the Secrets’, the Rajneesh text that I first read, are now published in the United States by Harper and Row as are ‘The Mustard Seed’, Vasant Joshi’s authorized biography, ‘The Awakened One’, and several other collections of Rajneesh’s discourses.
Rajneesh’s thoughts on a wide variety of subjects are alphabetically arranged according to topics and collected in three volumes of ‘The Book’. His meditations are assembled in ‘The Orange Book’. An in-depth presentation of his disciples view of Rajneesh’s life and work through 1984, with photographs, is contained in two lavishly produced volumes, ‘The Sound of Running Water’ and ‘This Very Place the Lotus Paradise’. All are available from Chidvilas. A detailed investigation of Rajneesh and his disciples appeared in a twenty-part series in the Oregonian in June 1985. Hugh Milne’s book ‘Bhagwan: The God that Failed’ is published by St. Martin’s Press. Frances Fitzgerald has written a long reportorial account of Rajneeshpuram, which is included in ‘Cities on a Hill’ (Simon and Schuster)”. (Gordon 1987, p. vii)
Rajneesh Verlags GMBH, Cologne, has a new structure in 1986 and is selling all discourse series in German translation, and English Bhagwan-books, audio- and videotapes.
All cloth-bound Poona editions of Osho’s books have been withdrawn from distribution. Only English paperbacks are available now, and the tape lecture series from Poona of course. (Letter from Rajneesh Verlag, 10.09.86)
The situation is that none of the Poona hardcovers are available for distribution worldwide. This decision was taken for legal reasons and concerns all distributors, which means that the books will not be sold anywhere for the time being. (Letter from Rajneesh Verlag, 27.09.86)
Many discourses from World Tour, those involving the journalists, remain unpublished in various Last Testaments numbered volumes.
The design of books with discourses from World Tour are with text framed and in two columns on each page.
All discourse books from World Tour and Bombay are listed in Volume III / Bibliography.
Video recording in Kathmandu
“A few disciples arrived from the West, one of them being Niskriya with his video camera. He just turned up one day, literally on the doorstep with his camera, unknown to anyone. But he had good references – he had been thrown out of Rajneeshpuram twice and had had the mala taken away by Sheela. Without him none of these beautiful discourses would have been recorded. Niskriya is an eccentric German film man, and when he first arrived he was experimenting with 3D film.” (Shunyo 1999, p. 158)
Nishkriya arrives for video recording in Kathmandu
“When we first got to Kathmandu and preparations were underway for Bhagwan’s discourses, it had been necessary to hire a professional Nepalese video operator to film the discourses. One day Hasya and Jayesh sat down with some of the group to talk about the situation. It was far from ideal. The fellow’s equipment was not exactly up to date. His idea of effective lighting was to place two lamps either side of Bhagwan’s chair and remove the shades from on top of them. In addition, the preference was to have a sannyasin operating the video… and from the next day Nishkriya began filming the discourses. He quickly earned himself the reputation of being an absentminded eccentric, but a lovable one. One couldn’t help but be stuck by his obvious devotion in trying to portray Bhagwan, through the medium of the video, as beautifully as possible. If Devaraj and I were almost totally preoccupied with helping the process of getting Bhagwan’s words into book form, Nishkriya was equally concerned that the video of each discourse be absolutely perfect. I rarely observed him doing anything else or talking about anything other than his beloved equipment, new ways of adjusting the lights, how whole new areas of creativity would open up if only he had a certain piece of equipment or a particular sort of tape.” (Forman 2002, p. 113)
Satya Vedant on video of Osho’s arrest on Crete
“Osho calmly put on his clothes and was taken out to a waiting police car. The police agreed to let his physician accompany him. Osho sat in the back, silently. Some miles on, suddenly the car pulled off the road and stopped. The policeman thrust a piece of paper at Osho and said, ‘Here, sign this.’ But he threw it back at them. Meanwhile, some sannyasins on motorbike, one with a video camera, arrived on the spot and started filming the activities of the police. This complicated the situation for the police who initially tried to chase off the cameras, but later gave up and drove on.” (Joshi 2010, p. 196)
Filming Osho’s arrest
“Meanwhile, Waduda – who had filmed Bhagwan’s leaving Kathmandu three weeks earlier – and Bhikkhu, happened to be at the Ormos Hotel with their video equipment as the police car bearing Bhagwan and Devaraj turned into the road that led past the hotel. Bhikkhu jumped onto his motorbike. “Come fast!” he called out to Waduda, who had already got the video working. Coincidentally, the weather had suddenly changed. Half an hour earlier it had been glorious. Now the sun was clouded by dark clouds; the whole sky had become an ominous purple and a wind had sprung up out of nowhere. It was exactly the sort of weather you would order for a classic Greek tragedy.
Through the eyes of the video camera, zooming along the highway on Bhikkhu’s motorbike at ninety kilometers an hour, Bhagwan’s car was just visible – police cars in front and behind it.” (Forman 2002, p. 244)
Maneesha arrives in Uruguay and recalls photosession
“Of Bhagwan I saw nothing, but apparently he had been sitting outside each afternoon. There, on the lawn, Anando would do her work with Bhagwan for an hour or so – reading out various news items to him…
About ten days after I had arrived, Vivek told us Bhagwan would be coming outside for a photo session. On that occasion he wore a plain white gown and was without his hat. Sitting by the pool in his sunglasses he looked every part the enigmatic master. Some days later, another session was arranged. Bhagwan emerged from the french windows that led from the diningroom onto the back lawn. Wearing a pale blue checked gown and a dark blue knitted hat, he paused on the red-brick path, apparently asking Rafia – armed with his camera – where he wanted him to sit. Nishkriya, who had arrived a few days earlier with his girlfriend, Lokita, trained his video camera on Bhagwan as Rafia showed him to a cushion placed on the lawn nearby. Bhagwan very slowly walked to it and gently lowered himself down. He seemed extremely fragile. His face was pale and he was not smiling…
A few minutes later, Bhagwan walked to a chair by the pool, then stood, at Vivek’s suggestion – she had arrived on the scene with her own camera – by the large rumpus room. Later he circled the swimming pool, and then walked up the large grey flagstone steps to the diningroom entrance, disappearing with Vivek through the french windows.” (Forman 2002, p. 330,331)
With Rajneesh out of reach to his people a new technical device was created to distribute his talks: phonelectures with selected discourses from Uruguay made available to his listeners.
1. A Mystery School without Therapy. April 1986.
2. The fightless Fight. May 28, 1986.
3. On Sannyas and Aids. June 4, 1986.
4. On Master and Disciple. June 16. 1986.
Heading: Audio Tapes of Bhagwan
“On Oct 5th, 86, Bhagwan began a new series, called ‘Beyond Enlightenment.’ At this present time master copies of audio tapes from this series are being prepared at Rajneesh Verlag in Cologne. They will not be available here in London until Nov. 1st. Meditation tapes – dynamic, kundalini, nadabrama, etc. will be available a few weeks later. Both in Cologne and London everything is starting from scratch and will take a little time to get going. All enquiries from Nov 1st should be directed to Sw. Anand Meru at 3, Annette Rd, N.7 6EX.” (Sannyas News, 01.11.1986)
Heading: Bhagwan Video Library Grows up
“The Video Bhagwan Library was born when we heard that Bhagwan had been speaking twice a day while lost to us in Uruguay, – and these discourses were now becoming available on video from Cologne. I wanted to see them as soon as I could and decided to jump in and do my best to make them available in England.
Before that time Paramartha made videos available in London and was very happy to hand this over to me as I had fresh initiative for the project.
From Cologne the news came that three discourses a week were in production. At that rate it would take more than half a year to get them all, as Bhagwan had been speaking twice a day for two months or more.
I went ahead and bought the first nine videos that were immediately available, began the hire library and started to organise two regular public showings each week. The Big Screen of Medina days was brought out of storage, dusted off, and put into service at the main public video evening on Sundays at Oppidans Road.
From the initial nine videos circulating three new ones a week have been added, building up a current stock of thirty-six different video discourses which are currently available after ten weeks of the Video Bhagwan Library’s operation.
After the first dozen Uruguayan videos, suddenly the beautiful Bombay discourses were arriving on the scene. The Rajneesh Upanishads series, and now from October 5th, the series entitled Beyond Enlightenment. So it seems the rest of the exquisite Uruguayan discourses will have to wait for some future time. Now Bhagwan speaks in English once a day we still miss four discourses a week on video. However, these are shortly to become available on audiotapes from Sw. Anand Meru… Lots of love to all, Swami Satyam Dhyanraj” (Sannyas News, 01.11.1986)
Sarjano’s photos of Osho in Kathmandu
“He [Sarjano] then asked Osho who meanwhile had accommodated himself on a big chair to do just something normal, something usual to him, so that he could make some pictures of the quotidian life of the Master during a common day, but at this point Osho closed his eyes and seemed to be dissolving into samadhi, and he almost started crying: “No, not like this! Please do something, anything, but do something ,,, have a cup of tea, eat a sandwich, have a little beer, but do something, pleeeese!”
Osho looked at him laughing, and then asked to Vivek to bring him a cup for tea, empty, from where he pretended to sip his drink like the consummate actor that he was. After he had shot a few pictures of Osho while drinking his tea, he asked him if Vivek could comb his beard while he would photograph the entire scene. The Master approved, creating thus a memorable sequence in which the only effort from Osho’s side was to not burst out with laughter for how much this scene was amusing him!
He was going to have even more fun when our photographer invited him to come out on the huge balcony to sit at the vast table there, proposing to him to have a real cup of tea this time, along with Vivek, Shunyo, and Anando, his faithful lawyer. According to him it wouldn’t only be a nice photo, but most importantly an image that nobody had never seen before, a photo of the Master sitting with his girlfriends sipping tea, just like an absolutely commonplace person, such as an old uncle surrounded by his grand-daughters…
He spent two marvellous weeks there, photographing Osho every day for half an hour, until the day before his departure he asked him through Vivek if he could photograph him sitting in the garden, amongst the beautiful flowers that were blossoming all around. Vivek came the same day to tell him that it was okay with Osho, and that the next morning he could have his photo session with him, in any spot of the garden that he liked.” (Sarjano 2016, p. 195)
For audio and video recordings see Volume III / Sources.
6.11 Books on Osho
Maneesha’s book remains a key source for those who need to understand events during Osho’s World Tour.
* Bhagwan. One Man Against the Whole Ugly Past of Humanity. The World Tour and back home to Poona / Juliet Forman (Ma Prem Maneesha). Rebel Publishing House, February 2002. 500 pages. (Forman 2002)
Cliff Colins in his Introduction to Maneesha’s book on World Tour
“And it is good that Maneesha tells it. She has packaged all the episodes and intimacies with great care. There are no “fantastics,” no exclamation marks. None are needed. The story reads like the diary of a young princess. She is obviously in love with her Master and the typewriter is her way to dance with Him. But the book is not about the author. Like a palace cat curled up on a thick rug while the master tells stories, she is seldom apparent. She remains unobtrusive, seeming to snooze, yet really just relaxing and savouring each moment, aware of every detail, remembering myriad incidents. I am glad she was there and now willing to share these moments with all of us. This is a feast for hearts that love the taste of Osho… Bon appetit. (Forman 2002, p. xi)
“The writing of this book was completed in early January 1990.” (Forman 2002, p. 419)
In this edition, notes to the reader says, “Osho was known as Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh during the time the event in this book occurred. At His suggestion His name has been left as it was then. J.F.”
Maneesha on her trilogy
“In 1985, after he returned to India from his world tour, Osho suggested that I write a book that would be, as he termed it, “the historic documentation” of his work and the movement that grew up around him. Having at that point been with him for fourteen years I found it impossible to squeeze all that needed to be said within the confines of one volume. So, triplets emerged… an entire trilogy! (Curiously enough each book did take nine months to complete.” (www.sannyas.wiki)
Osho says on Maneesha
“In Maneesha I have found a better recorder than Ramakrishna had in Vivekananda, or even Socrates had in Plato. When we are all gone her collections will be remembered for centuries.” Ma Tzu. The Empty Mirror (1989). Chapter 9, p. 166.
Maneesha on her trilogy
“And the last book, ‘Bhagwan: One Man Against the Whole, Ugly Past of Humanity’? It was an amazing experience to be with Osho on his world tour. Those months were so turbulent and insecure; we did not know from one day to he next if we might suddenly be deported from whatever country we were currently in, or if some new pretext might be dreamed up through which to separate Osho from us.
I was able to see with my own eyes Osho’s relentless unshakeability and sustained good humor, his profound understanding, his blatant disregard for his own personal safety, and his refusal to compromise or be cowed by political pressure. I have been inordinately blessed to have been by the side of a living buddha for the last fifteen years of his life. Hopefully something of my gratitude is transmitted through my writing.” (www.maneeshajames.com)
Pritam writes on front jacket
“…Maneesha James has documented the tragedy of Osho’s world odyssey in 1986 with great sensitivity. Interwoven throughout the drama and uncertainty of times are countless vignettes – touching, startling, humorous – that afford the reader a unique glimpse into the life of one of the most remarkable men to have ever lived on this Earth. Her writing style is mature, and so powerful that the incidents she depicts throb in the pulse of the reader.” (Amrita Pritam, M.P. poet, author. Front jacket)
On back jacket
“[This] is the last book in Juliet Forman’s trilogy, and the first detailed account of Bhagwan’s world odyssey as told by one of the disciples accompanying him. Beginning with Bhagwan’s enforced departure from the United States, the story takes the reader to a dozen countries as his people attempt to find a home for their master. This is a documentation of life lived intimately and intensively with a master who must certainly be regarded as the greatest iconoclast of all time. A mind-shattering saga of suspense and intrigue on an international scale. Ms. Forman’s disturbing book culminates in the United States government’s murder of Bhagwan – an event the author sees as not the end but the beginning of the realization of a vision, a dream for a new humanity.” (Back jacket)
First edition March 1991
“… Maneesha’s third book, “Bhagwan: One Man Against the Whole Ugly Past of Humanity” finally made it – having been held up in Customs because the map in it of India doesn’t accord with the way India sees itself as far as borders are concerned. Every copy of the book has been stamped in two places with an official stamp saying that the map is wrong! It illustrates superbly the whole theme of the book – the stupidity of boundaries and nationalities.” (Akasha and Maneesha. Yes Osho. Vol IV, No.32. 21.04.1991. Digital newsletter echo)
Maneesha writes on Sarjano asking questions to Osho
“I knew the feeling well, and in subsequent years was to become even more familiar with the sentiments Sarjano was expressing. I am not a mystic encountering the situation Bhagwan had described when he’d spoken of the silent part of the brain needing the right side of the brain to express itself. Yet in commentaries in the darshan diaries during the Poona days, and later in my books about Bhagwan, I was continually confronted with the challenge of finding words about experiences for which there simply is no vocabulary.” (Forman 2002, p. 134)
Punya recalls typing for Maneesha
“It came to my ears that Maneesha was looking for someone to type the manuscript of a book she was writing. I had plenty of time to spare after sunbathing as a visitor in the Holiday Inn and needed something to do when the sun became too hot. I remember re-typing the corrected manuscripts on a black portable typewriter on a cold black marble countertop in a kitchen. It was about Osho’s arrest, later published under the title, ‘Bhagwan: Twelve Days that Shook the World’. In the darkness of the kitchen I could just make out a few scattered books and research notes and, closer to the window, Amrito, Osho’s physician, who was also writing a book. While working there I overheard Maneesha say that Osho had suggested she omit all references to relationships and that kind of everyday trouble and rather write about her meditation, her growth and how she felt Osho was working with her. I took this suggestion on board while writing this book even if it was not given to me directly.” (Punya 2015, p. 339)
“‘Bhagwan: The Buddha For The Future’
Juliet Forman, R.N., S.C.M., R.M.N.
The Rebel Publishing House
The first volume of a trilogy that documents life around Osho, this lively and intimate account describes the seven years of the development of the ashram in Poona, India in the ’70s and the Rajneeshpuram commune in Oregon, United States. The book concludes with Osho’s arrest and imprisonment by the US government.
‘Bhagwan: Twelve Days That Shook the World’
Juliet Forman, R.N., S.C.M., R.M.N.
The Rebel Publishing House
The second book in Ms. Forman’s trilogy is a detailed record of Osho’s arrest, incarceration and attempts made on his life by the US government. The author draws on the experiences of that time as recounted by Osho, and by the small group of disciples imprisoned with him. In addition, she has used interviews with jail officials, press coverage, verbatim court notes and government documentation to present an intriguing story that reads like a spiritual thriller.” (Forman 2002, p. 500)
Mistlberger on Maneesha’s trilogy
“Of all the books written by disciples and ex-disciples describing Osho’s life and work, these three books are the most ambitious. Taken together, they amount to 1,500 pages and half a million words…
Juliet Forman, who went by the name Maneesha, was a close disciple of Osho’s and one of his most faithful. That said, she was no mindless follower but an intelligent woman and dedicated chronicler and her books are worth reading for one willing to invest the time. She, in all likelihood, gives the most technically accurate account concerning the ‘who did what’ of the highly controversial days leading to the collapse of the Oregon commune in 1985 and its immediate aftermath. That said, she may have been too close and too attached to her master to be able to write in a purely objective fashion. Nevertheless, I recommend her books if for no other reason than the fascinating account they give of a life in the immediate inner circle of a profound and deeply controversial figure…
Forman captured a very large chunk of Osho’s story.” (Mistlberger 2010, p. 662)
* Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh. The Most Dangerous Man Since Jesus Christ / Sue Appleton (Ma Prem Anando). Cologne, Rebel Publishing, 1987. (Appleton 1987)
As Osho’s legal secretary Anando had the privilege and challenge to join the core group that accompanied Osho on his World Tour in 1986. She was involved in most occurrences that took place in those tumultuous days and wrote her brief report only one year after the tour.
Having access to press clippings and other material in Press Office, Poona, Anando made up a comprehensive presentation of published press reports on Osho. And she extracted quotes from the writings of prominent researchers in the field of psychology and history of religion. On the evaluations of Osho by researchers, writers and artists, see pp. 50-60.
From back cover
“Rajneesh represents the kind of danger to society which has no parallel in the history of this country.” (Jagadguru Shankaracharya Swarupanand of Dwarka. India, 1987)
* Bhagwan. The God that Failed / Hugh Milne. Caliban Books, 1986. (Milne 1986)
Mistlberger on Milne
“This book was, to my knowledge, the first of the semi-autobiographical accounts of life before, with, and after Osho, by an erstwhile close follower. It is also by the far the most critical. Milne was a former disciple who turned against his master…
Milne’s work was of course castigated by most Osho disciples when it first came out, a time in the late 1980s when Osho was still alive. I did not like the book either when I read it back then. However, re-reading it with the benefit of two decades of hindsight, I think it’s probable that Milne was unfairly maligned to some degree. He wrote it too soon after his bitter disappointments in Oregon and this shows in the axe-grinding feel of much of the book, yet parts of it at least are written with a certain common sense intelligence and make more sense now than they did a quarter of a century ago. The major weakness of the book is that it almost completely ignores the transformational element of being with a guru – which is, after all, the main point of being a disciple in the first place. Unquestionably, the title of the book is absurd, as Osho certainly never claimed to be a ‘God’.” (Mistlberger 2010, p. 660)
Osho on Milne
“One man lived with me for almost ten years, and now he has written a book against me – and all lies, everything fictitious. But he has to do it just to save his ego, otherwise, people ask, “For ten years you lived with him – then why did you leave?” There can be only two reasons: either the disciple is wrong, or the master is wrong – and the disciple cannot be wrong.
But just think, a person who lives ten years with me… Ten years is a long time, one-seventh of your life – and the best part, your youth. It took ten years for this idiot to find out that he was with a wrong master. Now how many years will it take for him to find a right master? His youth is gone – with a wrong master – and he cannot live without a master either, because he is not ready to accept his responsibilities. He will again move in the same vicious circle.” The Rajneesh Upanishad (1986). Chapter 19, p. 417.
Osho on Milne
“Shiva has written a book against me, full of lies. I have told the English sannyasins to sue him in court, because what he is saying is utter nonsense. And you can see the cunningness. In Poona, every evening I used to have a meeting for people who were taking sannyas. It was an open meeting – almost sixty, seventy, sometimes a hundred people would be present. One dozen people or maybe more would be initiated. And ten sannyasins were dancing as mediums to create a vibrant energy.
And Shiva has written in his book that every night I need ten women, without making any reference to the fact that those ten women are mediums and they dance in an open place with one hundred people watching, a dozen people present to be initiated. He does not mention that; he simply mentions every night I need ten women…
It is a psychological thing to be understood. Many more books will be written, many more articles will be written by sannyasins – just because they have trusted and now are betraying. Some reason has to be there for why they are leaving me. Without a reason, they will feel guilty, and if there is no reason, they have to invent it. They have to create lies.” The Path of the Mystic. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 25, p. 266. Punta del Este, 16.05.1986 pm.
Maneesha on Milne
“(Milne and Strelley – another ex-sannyasin whose account of her years in Poona is particularly insane – both found publishers. Six other authors of books on Bhagwan cannot find commercial publishers: their books have been rejected as not being “objective,” or even, as being “too balanced”! Interesting, no one seems to regard negativity as unobjective.) What as curious world it is that about a man who has four hundred book titles to his name only the negative sees the light of day!
But the unkindest cut about Hugh’s book is the timing of its publication. It coincided with Bhagwan being forced to leave the United States, and his harassment for the following year by that same country’s government as it brought its so-called democratic influence to bear on numerous countries which obediently refused visas to and closed their doors in the face of Bhagwan.” (Forman 1988, p. 264)
Carter writes on Milne
“A notable example… is the book ‘Bhagwan: The God that Failed’, in which Hugh Milne (1986), once a trainer of bodyguards for the Rajneesh community, develops a sensational exposé of the movement. Because of Milne’s position of considerable trust in the organization, one could argue that he was especially well placed in terms of knowledge. He is most inclusive in his descriptions of negative aspects of the movement including a number of observations not revealed elsewhere or by others. His story often takes on she “captivity narrative” form identified by Bromley (Chapter 2 this volume). The credibility of his account is, however, rendered questionable by inconsistencies, many claims for which there is no other corroboration, and some items which are simply counterfactual.” (Carter 1889, p. 227)
A 4-page comment on Milne’s book was distributed on 19.05.1987. Written by Amrito it was to be used as a response to journalists if they were asking about Milne’s book. Attached was a small report on ‘The Kailas Farm Experiment’ by Sw Shivamurti (of Scotland), without source but most likely from Sannyas.
The discussion on studies on Osho depending on defectors only, which may be suffering from serious selection biases, is highly relevant to the astonishing number of scholars, who have relied entirely on Milne’s account. See Bromley 1993, p. 219.
Urban writes on biases
“More recently, however, authors have begun to challenge this wholesale rejection of ex-members’ accounts. After all, all sources of information – including current members – have particular biases, commitments, and axes to grind, so it is not immediately evident that an ex-member’s account would necessarily be any more biased than that of a member in good standing.” (Urban 2015, p. 21)
Preface by Dr. Lawrence Blair in ‘My Diamond Days with Osho’
“The guru who was unceremoniously deported, vilified by the media, his Oregon Ashram crushed, was then – in ill health, with a few close disciples – hounded by the U.S. government from nation to nation for a year until returning to India where he died shortly afterwards of unclear causes…
After six years in Poona, Shunyo accompanied Osho when he visited America. She was washing his clothes for him in Oregon during the explosive years of ascent to international attention and infamy. She shared with him being shackled in chains and imprisoned in North Carolina (with no charges against her) and finally being deported – with no explanation. The ailing, fragile Osho, with a few intimates, was hounded from nation to nation, seeking refuge under constant threats and harassment. This vulnerable and astonishingly special family of people experienced years of hatred and rejection, on an international scale, before braving the return to India – which Osho had left under a political cloud. At Bombay airport they were nearly crushed by the tumultuous welcoming crowd…
Shunyo was with him over the following years, as he withered quickly – in body, but not in light – of a fatal, wasting disease, which was unanimously diagnosed by various independent sources as resulting from thallium poisoning, administered while in the jails of America.” (Shunyo 1999, pp. vi-vii)
Books on Osho
“Just the other day Anando was showing me one book published against me in Australia by a couple who have been sannyasins for three years and have been in the commune. But just looking at their ideas, it seems they have never seen me.” Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 24, p. 211. Punta del Este, 24.04.1986 am.
“Now in Rajen’s groups even my name is not mentioned. What is the need of mentioning the name of a friend? You have many friends – you don’t mention their names.
Teertha has made an academy. Devageet was there; he worked hard to find the place, to arrange it, hoping that it was going to be Bhagwan’s meditation academy. But when he saw the board being put up it simply said “Meditation Academy.”
He asked, “But no mentioning of Bhagwan?”
And Teertha and Vedana and others who were involved in it simply said, “We are all friends – why put Bhagwan’s name there?” Beyond Psychology. Talks in Uruguay (1988). Chapter 24, p. 213. Punta del Este, 24.04.1986 am.
(Note: Teertha’s book ‘The Experiment is Over’ (Lowe 1989) is without any mentioning of Osho with whom he spent 13 years as therapist, editor and meditation leader).
Maneesha on Teertha’s book
“The only words in his book that had the certain whiff of wisdom were out-and-out plagiarisms – Bhagwan’s own vision in, often, virtually identical phrases. And there was not one reference to Bhagwan by name, no acknowledgement of where Lowe had picked up such idea. Having a particular familiarity with and affection for Bhagwan’s words, I was amazed that anyone, especially a former disciple, could have the audacity to steal Bhagwan’s views without the most modest mention of where they came from.” (Forman 2002, p. 357)
“In the following months, I applied myself to reading and examining closely all the accounts concerning “the fall of Bhagwan and his empire” (as the newspapers called it) and I also followed the talks he gave in Crete, Uruguay and Nepal, and the news reporting the adventures of his travels. I read and reread the horrible book of his ex-disciple and bodyguard Shiva – Hugh Milne – entitled “Bhagwan, the God that Failed”, as well as the thorough study of one open-minded journalist [Frances FitzGerald 1986], now published in her book describing our Communities in America.” (Berthout 2001, p. 57)
Press in Uruguay
“Only three Uruguayan papers managed to track Bhagwan down; of them, two were able to have an interview with Bhagwan, while one had to content its readers by assuring them that it “did succeed in making a video of a few of them [us sannyasins] playing tennis”!…
In early May, the editor from ‘Busqueda’ came to the house to lunch with Hasya and Jayesh. He seemed pleasant enough, and his several-page report of his interview with Bhagwan that evening which was published in the paper of May 8th was an exceptionally accurate one. The questions were not on the usually predictable issues of Bhagwan’s supposed attachment to Rolls Royces or our indulging in orgies…
The editor was to write of Bhagwan as having eyes that “reflect serenity and joy. His skin denies the years that a long white beard adds to him…
The strength of his speech, other than what it might mean for those who listen to the content of his words, is given by his expressive eyes and by his hands, even more eloquent in their expression.”…
After the interview, the editor asked if he might have a photograph taken of him with Bhagwan, and it appeared alongside the interview in the paper – a smiling Bhagwan holding both the hands of the editor.
Later, ‘El Pais’ conducted its interview. The reporter, Miguel Carba Jal, observed that we, Bhagwan’s disciples sat around him in a “really religious silence. In this case it was two hours and a half contemplating an absolutely unmoving man, who only moves his hands in what constitutes an amazing phenomenon of expression, which manages to transmit a spiritual state to go beyond the distance that could be created by a totally uninhibited language.”” (Forman 2002, p. 355)
Tom Robbins on Osho
“As the American author Tom Robbins once remarked,
“Osho is the most dangerous man since Jesus Christ. He’s obviously a very effective man, otherwise he wouldn’t be such a threat. He’s saying the same things that nobody else has the courage to say. He scares the pants off the control freaks.”… Tom Robbins was the rare case of an established popular author coming out openly in eloquent defence of Osho. Shown a transcript of Robbins’ remarks about him, Osho once commented ‘he is my sannyasin (disciple).’ Of course Robbins wasn’t, at least not formally, but Osho made the remark to express his view that Robbins was attuned to his understanding.”
(Mistlberger 2010, pp. 187,686)
Tom Robbins on Osho
“Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh is the most dangerous man since Jesus Christ…
If crucifixion were still in vogue, of course he would’ve been nailed up. But since we’re civilized, they had to force him into exile instead. I’m sure they would have much preferred to crucify him on the White House lawn…
I think Bhagwan is a great man, and his persecution makes a liar and a hypocrite out of anyone who claims there is religious freedom in the United States…
He’s obviously a very effective man, otherwise he wouldn’t be such a threat. He’s saying the same things that nobody else has the courage to say. Even I haven’t had the courage to say some of the things he’s said.” Tom Robbins. (The Rajneesh Upanishad (1986). Back cover)
Some academics discussed the historical impact of Osho
“After many years of professional study on the phenomenon of enlightened masters and their religions, I feel qualified to say that the presence of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh is the living embodiment of what is otherwise only academic speculation, religious dogma, or at best has become the stuff of myth and legend. Only twelve knew Jesus, perhaps several thousands recognized Buddha, today now, millions hear the silence of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh.” (Dr. Agnete Kutar, Ph.D., Lecturer at Freie Universität of Berlin. In: Appleton 1987, p. 60)
‘Some Biographical Facts and Events from the Life of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh with revealing details of US political moves during his World Tour’. In: Beyond Psychology (1988), pp. 419-24.
With Osho mostly out of reach and expelled from county upon country, information on his whereabouts were both limited and much desired by his followers. We are in an era before Internet, Facebook and other social media, and in this interregnum of uncertainty, when the movement was without a head center, several newsletters popped up to meet the demand among his followers on what was happening. They were largely of limited circulation and short lived, carried by the energy of dedicated devotees who edited, wrote and distributed them without any respect for the logic of business oriented publishers on the market. The official newsletters, The Rajneesh Times (India) and Die Rajneesh Times (Deutsche Ausgabe) were still published. As we will see the new papers and magazines had differing views on the issue of independent writing versus the positive journalism heralded by Osho and the management.
From an editorial in The New British Rajneesh Times
“In the aftermath of Sheela’s failure to make a power structure from the sannyasin community throughout the world there was pain and confusion. Out of that mental turmoil other newsheets were born. Their purpose was more to do with interaction among sannyasins themselves than with setting Bhagwan’s message out clearly and without editorial bias. Most of these early expressions of pain have now ceased to exist, some continue to rehash the past and miss the present upsurge of heartfulness.
It was from this deeply felt wish to make His message and vision available again that The New British Rajneesh Times was born. Originally the name was going to be ‘Mevlana Bhagwan’ – a new name for a new venture. We put our ideas to Hasya and got back the message that Bhagwan wants all His newspapers to be called the Rajneesh Times.” (The New British Rajneesh Times, 1986:3, p. 2)
Newspapers, newsletters, magazines with index to selected articles and commenting are here presented in following order:
* The Rajneesh Times. India.
* Die Rajneesh Times. German edition.
* De Rajneesh Times. Dutch edition.
* Sannyas News. London.
* The New British Rajneesh Times. London.
* Rajneesh. The Newspaper. Boulder.
* Viha – New Monthly Newsletter. USA.
* Rajneesh News Scandinavia. Sweden.
* sannyas info. Denmark.
* The Rajneesh Times (India). Poona. December 1983 – 1987. Editors: Ma Yoga Prem (1985), Sw Jayesh Bharti (1986), Sw Anand Maitreya (1986-1987). Editorial Board (1986): Sw Chaitanya Keerti, Ma Amrit Sadhana, Sw Gopal Bharti. Publisher: Sw Satya Bodhisatva, Sw Anand Svabhava. Fortnightly. 8 pages with inserts, 14 pages (1987). Illustrated. Annual subscription Rs.48.
Continued as Rajneesh Times International.
(In stock: 33 issues)
The Rajneesh Times (India). Selected articles:
_ Interview with Ma Dharma Chetana. Vol III, 1985:1.
– Bhagwan in Manali. 1985:1
– The Odyssey of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh – from Charlotte to Portland courtroom by Ma Mary Catherine. 1985:1.
– Birthday Celebration At Rajneeshdham Poona 1985:2.
– The Odyssey of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh – from Charlotte to Portland courtroom by Ma Mary Catherine. “This article is a continuation from our previous issue of The Rajneesh Times dated 11th December 1985 Vol III No.1. It was originally published in The Rajneesh Times Vol IV, No.12 Nov.11, 1985 published from Rajneeshpuram, Oregon, U.S.A.” 1985:2.
– Community meeting with Swabhav and Niranjan. Friends from Oregon arriving. 1985:2.
– Bhagwan on The Rajneesh Times. Discourse 12.10,1985. 1985:12
– Interview with Bhagwan by Rajneesh Times, India. Vol III, 1986:3
– Bhagwan in Kathmandu. Interview to Rajneesh Times Germany. 1986:4,5.
– J. Krishnamurti. Obituary. 1986:6
– Editor: Sw Jayesh Bharti. Publisher: Sw Anand Svabhava. 1986:7, March 11.
– Interview with Osho by Carol Reed, Newsweek. 1986:8.
– Editorial by Sw Anand Maitreya on Hugh Milne. 1986:16.
– Rajneeshpuram now a deserted city. A.P. message 02.06.1986:16.
– Bhagwan Shree in India. Home government treats him the way Christian governments did. 1986:17.
– Maitreya: We go to the feet of the master. July 11, p. 2.
– I am a free man and I would live and die a free man. Press conference. Bombay, 09.30 am, 31.07.1986. 1986:17.
– New phase of Bhagwan’s work begins. Upanishads. 1986:18.
– Interview with The Rajneesh Times, India. 1986:17.
– An Epoch-making Travel. Editorial by Maitraya. 1986:17.
– Bhagwan’s World Tour. Chronology. 1986:17.
– Interview with Rajneesh Times, Germany, 12.08.1986. 1986:20.
– Bhagwan declares Govind Siddhart’s enlightenment. 1986:21.
– Interview with Sw Govind Siddharth. 1986:22.
– Interview with Hasya. Heading: U.S. government conspiracy to silence Bhagwan. 1986:22.
– Intimate glimpses of travel with Bhagwan. A talk by Ma Prem Hasya, Cologne, 02.08.1986. 1986:22.
– New format introduced eight months ago. 1986:24.
– Rajneesh Verlag new structure. 1986:24.
– Interview with Maneesha on publication work. 1986:26.
– Editorial Board: Sw Chaitanya Keerti, Ma Amrit Sadhana, Sw Gopal Bharti. Editor: Sw Anand Maitreya. Vol IV. 1986:1
– Birthday issue. 68 pages. Colored. 11.12.1986. Vol IV. 1986:1.
– Interview with Mataji, Bhagwan’s mother. 1986:2.
On title heading of early issues: ‘A Newspaper with a Vision’.
“Cologne (raj) – The veil of secrecy which has been covering Bhagwan during his world tour can be lifted now. His personal secretary, Ma Prem Hasya, already indicated in a letter to Rajneesh Times (RT No. 15) that the real face of the so called western democracies was revealed by the tour. They are actually based on a free democratic constitutional structure but they don’t follow this idea neither by spirit nor by word. The following chronology shows how the world tour became an odyssey. Bhagwan’s freedom of movement and speech was cut down either by bureaucrats full of prejudices or by anxious politicians of countries which are economically dependent on the U.S.A.”
[Here follows a Chronology of the World Tour from January 2, 1986, when Osho left from Kulu Manali until July 29, 1986, when he left Portugal bound for India]. (The Rajneesh Times (India), 08.08.1986)
“The Rajneesh Times (English). Fortnightly. Date of Publication: 11th & 25th of every month. Annual Subscription Rs.48/-.
The Rajneesh Times (Hindi) Fortnightly. Date of Publication: 11th & 25th of every month. Annual Subscription Rs.48/-.
Rajneesh News Bulletin (Hindi). Monthly. Annual Subscription Rs.10/-.
Rajneesh News Bulletin (English). Monthly. Annual Subscription Rs.15/-.” (The Rajneesh Times (India). 1985:2)
* Rajneesh Times International. Deutsche Ausgabe. (German Edition). 30.03.1983 – 1989. Weekly, from November 1987 fortnightly, later monthly. Editors: Ma Deva Yachana; Sw Prem Nirvano; Shanta (1983-1987). Production: Sw Vimukta. Sw Prem Visarjan. 16-28 pages. In color from 1987. Publisher: Rajneesh Times Verlagsgesellschaft. Rajneeshstadt, Germany. Initial run 30,000 copies. Continuation of: Die Rajneesh Times. Deutsche Ausgabe. Continued in: Osho Times International. Deutsche Ausgabe (German Edition) from 1990.
(In stock: 187 issues)
– Bhagwan’s Odyssey / Ma Gyan Tigra. 27.06.1986. Chronology from 05.11.1985 when Bhagwan left USA until Jamaica, 1986.
Shanta recalls from the publishing
“Es ging jedoch nicht nur um Negativität, sondern damals führten wir auch ganz offen inhaltliche Diskussionen. Über was sollten wir berichten, vor allem, da wir jetzt keinen Stoff mehr von der Ranch bekamen, der ja wöchentlich viele Seiten gefüllt hatte? Osho hatte Amerika verlassen, war auf Weltreise, musste ein Land nach dem anderen verlassen und erstmal war noch kein Platz für ihn in Sicht. Damals schrieben wir zum Beispiel über die meditative Dimension der Fussballweltmeisterschaft 1986, über andere spirituelle Richtungen und ergossen uns in mehr oder weniger ausgegorenen politischen Kommentaren, die ich heute sicherlich nicht mehr so veröffentlichen würde. Das Positive daran war aber, dass die Zeitung in dieser Hinscht sehr bunt und lebendig, wenn auch manchmal etwas schräg war. Was die Berichte über andere spirituelle Richtungen betraf, war uns übrigens sehr bald klar, das wir nicht zum Forum eines esoterischen Supermarktes werden wollten.” (Ma Shanta. Interview. Die Osho Times, 2002:8)
Visarjan recalls from Bombay
“Als ich 1986 mit Shanta in Mumbai (Bombay) immer noch und wieder mal für die Rajneesh Times unterwegs war, bekamen wir von Hasya, der damaligen internationalen Sekretärin von Osho, die Nachricht, nicht mehr von dort direkt zu berichten. Osho war nach dem Zusammenbruch der Ranch und den Turbulenzen der Weltreise nach Indien zurückgekehrt, wo ihm ein indischer Sannyasin sein Haus im Bombayer Stadtteil Juhu-Beach zur Verfügung gestellt hatte. Der Hintergrund für Hasyas Message war, dass damals noch kein fester Platz für Osho gefunden war und alle Leute, die mit dem Publizieren von Oshos Worte beschäftigt waren, in Köln bleiben sollten. Dies traf uns tief. Wir gaben uns damit nicht ab und fragten Osho über Neelam, seiner Sekretärin für Indien, warum wir nicht mehr bei ihm sein könnten. Die Antwort kam prompt und war überwältigend: “The German Rajneesh Times were the people who never went away from me. Tell them that they always should come and sit next to me.” …
(Die amerikanische Mutterausgabe war zwischenzeitlich eingestellt worden und wir waren zu der Zeit seine wirklich einzige Zeitung weltweit, die noch druckte.)” (Prem Visarjan. Die Osho Times, 2002:8)
* De Rajneesh Times. Dutch edition.
* Sannyas News. London Based Sannyas News. February 1986 – April 1987. Bi-monthly. Editing & production: Sw Anand Parmartha & Sw Prem Roger (1986), Sw Parmatha (1986), Sahajanand (January 1987). London, England. Change to tabloid form in August 1986 and from tabloid to A4 magazine format with covers in color (November 1986). Circulation 1000 copies as of August 1986.
Alternate title: Here and Now (1986:21, 29.11.1986). New subtitle: Incorporating Misfit. Rajneesh Misfit City London. (1987:27, 11.04.1987)
(In stock: 19 issues).
Sannyas News. Selected articles:
– Open letter from Poonam to Bhagwan. 16.05.1986.
– News Letter Gets Writ Twice. On editorial discussions. 16.05.1986.
– Champagne and Disinfectant by Rajen Lowen. Part one of two articles. 27.06.1986.
– Reprint of letter from Paul Heelas, co-author of Thompson 1986, and excerpt of 1966 Examinations for Religious Studies with question on Bhagwan. ‘8.c. What does Bhagwan mean by ‘The Psychology of the Buddha?’ 11.07.1986, p. 14.
– Three letters from Ma Prem Hasya to Teertha and Amitabh. 25.07.1986.
– Devageet on Sheeva. 25.07.1986.
– Letter from Hasya on the editing of Sannys News. 25.07.1986.
– The last days in Greece. Translated by Ma Deva Sonia from an Italian newspaper. 08.08.1986, p. 4-5.
– Bhagwan’s Odyssey. Timeline. 22.08.1986.
– Interview with Geeten. 22.08.1986.
– The Last Medina Story. 22.08.1986.
– Interview with Neelam. Looking After Bhagwan. 06.09.1986.
– Interview with Ma Amrit Mukta. The Man for Me. 20.09.1986.
– Feature from Teertha’s Villa Volpi. 04.10.1986
– Interview with the editor of Sannyas News. 18.10.1986.
– Interview with Ma Prita. 18.10.1986.
– Interview with Ma Prem Nivedita. 18.10.1986.
– Interview with Ma Prem Maneesha. 01.11.1986.
– Interview with Sw Suraj Prakash. 29.11.1986.
– Letters Neelam – Parmartha on editing issues. 29.11.1986.
– Letter from Denmark. Sw Anand Neeten. 29.11.1986.
– Satire by Subhuti. 13.12.1986.
– Interview with Ma Yoga Darshan. 13.12.1986.
– Parmartha resigns as editor. 10.01.1987.
– Findhorn Foundation. 10.01.1987.
– Miasto. The Last Commune. 10.01.1987.
– Subhuti’s farewell. “P.S. This is my last article for a Rajneesh publication. I feel it’s time to drop this role, whatever it is, and move onto something new. See you around, and thanks for all the feedback. Have a nice enlightenment.” 31.01.1987.
– Bhagwan is both my master and son. Interview with Matajee. 31.01.1987. Reprinted from The Rajneesh Times.
– Interview with Dhyanraj. Impressions from Poona. 11.04.1987.
– Interview with Alan Rajen Lowen. 11.04.1987.
– Interview with Sw Anand Veeresh by Ma Prem Samadhi. Heading: Veeresh’s Enlightenment. [Grada Rajneesh in Holland has changed to Rajneesh Humaniversity]. 11.04.1987.
– Interview with Ma Prem Gandha. 11.04.1987.
“The London based Sannyas Newsheet comes out every two weeks (or more frequently when events dictate). We aim to bring unbiased, up-to-date news about Bhagwan, events around Him, and all the goings on in the U.K.” (Sannyas News, 02.05.1986)
Sannyas News. Editorial. August 1986.
“With this issue we go tabloid. In the past we consider that we rightly put getting the paper out regularly on a part time basis above the finer considerations of presentation and editing. Had we stopped to consider everything editorially in fine detail the paper would never have got itself together at all.
On the question of editorial policy, I wish it could be doubly clear that it continues to remain representative and participatory for all sannyasins and friends, even those with a minority voice.
The genuine seeker will find us out. For the record, I first read Bhagwan in ’73, on a cheap badly produced and badly translated Bombay pamphlet that Shayam Singha had brought back from India. It had been thumbed by 100 hands. Neither thing detracted from the words, which immediately set me on fire.” (Parmatha. Chairman of Editorial Board. Sannyas News, 22.08.1986)
“Sannyas News wishes Viha News (San Francisco), Sannyas Info (Denmark), Mesto Muse (Australia), Liberation Times (Italy) every success with their newspapers. Keep Truckin'” (Sannyas News, 04.10.1986)
Heading: Editorial. The Embers of Rajneeshism
“In returning to an old format (The British Rajneesh Times) with the old logo it is no surprise that those most motivated are those who were most exposed to such conditioning. If there is to be some sort of minimal organization around Bhagwan it surely has to take a different form and have a different taste. It cannot be the object of any central control or censorship which the British Rajneesh Times is willing to entertain. That much must surely be clear. One of our journalists was asked this week whether he was a sannyasin. The correct reply to all those that still seem tied up with the structures is “are you still a Rajneeshee?” (Parmatha. Sannyas News, 04.10.1986)
Heading: Doubts over the New English Rajneesh Times
the idea of a new Rajneesh Times fills me with misgivings. Surely Bhagwan’s vision speaks for itself clearly enough through his books, tapes and videos which are shortly to become available in a bigger way than at present. This man needs no other spokesman. My fear is that we will suffer second hand interpretations. Also I am suspicious of sannyasins devoting themselves to Bhagwan’s vision as they call it, instead of creating their own visions. It all speaks of the distant past. Surely this is holding on to Bhagwan’s coat tails. Bhagwan is his own best PR man.” (Sannyas News, 20.09.1986)
Heading: Newspaper Finances
The English Rajneesh Times in the London Link-up meeting admit to spending over £1300 to produce the last issue with losses of at least £600.
What is happening? Sannyas News has got itself together as I understand from nowhere with very little by way of direct financial help. It’s doing precisely the job to match the time and circumstances and there is a feel of real journalism about it. The English Rajneesh Times looks and feels like it’s from the past – and what a past! – muddied to say the least.
Apparently they are going ahead with another issue and financial losses. Two questions:
1. Where is the money coming from?
2. If there is money available why not use this money to further other under-subscribed activities in London like meditation?
With best wishes, Calvin Forbes, Camden.” (Sannyas News, 04.10.1986)
Interview with the editor of Sannyas News, October 1986
“Yes, I received three calls [from Hasya] over the last 21 days. The first indicated that there was a “Message ” that if “Sannyas News” could not be positive, then it should hand on to those who could be. I took this to mean the English Rajneesh Times. The second call was a message asking us why we were continuing with Yellow Journalism and spreading rumours…
[On Positive Journalism] It is just a platitude. It means nothing. Or it means “That of which I approve.” Such a phrase betrays Socratic dialogue, the founder of which, Socrates, always subjected such words to the severest scrutiny.
For example I have read the German and Dutch Rajneesh Times thoroughly over the last three months. They have carried, quite frequently articles and advertising I would not have carried.
Basically I am interested in the traditions of Investigative reporting and I do not want any form of what might be called propaganda in this newspaper. Many Germans when I lived in Medina came and loved the place and loved the therapy they received there. I am sure they would have been interested in what finally happened in Medina, but of course this story was never carried in the German Rajneesh Times. (Parmartha. In: Sannyas News, 18.10.1986)
Letter from Neelam to Parmartha, November 1986.
Received your letter. It is just misunderstandings on your part. Bhagwan has seen few issues of your Sannyas News and He understands well that your intentions are good but the way you are doing it is more to fit with the market than to stick to Bhagwan’s message. It is time for you to take a decision. If you want your newspaper as a representative of Bhagwan’s work, then you listen to Hasya. If you want to do your own thing then you should be clear about it, then Hasya need not worry about it. Then your paper is not included in Rajneesh publications.
I think you understand the point. With love and His blessings, Yoga Neelam.” (Sannyas News, 29.11.1986)
Heading: Rajneesh Press in Crisis?
Reading through recent editions of the American and British Rajneesh Times I became increasingly uneasy at the tone of both papers.
The American “Rajneesh” of October had been reduced to only 8 pages – one major discourse of Bhagwan’s, astrology, a few outside ads and the rest an advertisement for it-self. It spoke of investment in new technology and 2000 subscribers; at the same time it included and appeal for wider support and for donations. It seemed to want to be both a business and a charity. But is it in danger of falling between two stools?
The New British Rajneesh Times seems to be following the same pattern. The second issue included an interview with Ma Prem Hasya in which she berated British sannyasins for not willingly “doing Bhagwan’s work” without pay. On another page was a list of Directors (presumably shareholders) and elsewhere an invitation to all and sundry to buy shares in the venture.
Putting the two together, it appears that the publication is asking sannyasins to work for nothing. Should the paper become financially viable, and then profitable, the profits would logically be reaped by the shareholders. A device, it seems. for turning the unpaid labour of the devoted and industrious into profit for the high and mighty. A fine kettle of fish!
The sannyas movement is still in danger from the corruption that killed Rajneeshpuram. The trust that Bhagwan inspired in all of us is both a powerful and delicate thing. Such Machiavellian methods from a publication purporting to present Bhagwan in Britain can only confuse and damage the sannyas community, both within and without. As the bard said, “Lilies that fester smell far worse than weeds.” Love, Rupara.” (Sannyas News, 13.12.1986)
Heading: Every day a celebrations
I was astonished and, after my surprise, wryly amused to see a flyer for a Celebration Event in December, at the disco last night. These four celebrations (there used to be only three in Poona) were a Sheela device for money raising, and something about them always felt phoney to me. Admittedly there were some beautiful moments but surely the time for them is over. Carried in the Sannyas News in March was a message from Bhagwan through Bhagawati, who was at the RSI office at the time, that Bhagwan no longer wanted these official church celebrations. The message said “Make every day a celebration.”” (Sannyas News, 01.11.1986)
Heading: Editor resigns
“The founder of the Sannyas News Sw. Anand Parmartha resigned with this issue. Parmartha started a London Newsletter in January of last year, on a 2-page photocopied sheet and stayed with the paper through many changes. The Newsletter changed in February to a Newsheet with the help of Prem Roger. From May an Editorial Board, under Parmartha’s coordination, carried the paper into a tabloid form in late August. In November Sahajanand and Parmartha, by then a formal partnership, carried the paper into the magazine format. Parmartha will continue as Consultative Editor… and only act in an advisory capacity,.” (Sannyas News, 10.01.1987)
“As the old age crumbles around us, Here & Now welcomes Misfit, the Rajneesh Misfit City publication, to these pages. This, the 27th issue since formation, marks a merging of two independent sannyas journals in London.” (Sannyas News, 11.04.1987)
* The New British Rajneesh Times. February 1986 – May 1987. 16 pages. Editor: Sw Devageet. Produced by Sw Purnananda et. al. Holoway, England. American News syndicated from Rajneesh, The Newspaper. Subscription rates: UK 12 issues £10.50. Europe 12 issues £13.00. Rest of the World 12 issues £ 15.50.
(In stock: 8 issues)
The New British Rajneesh Times. Selected articles:
– Interview with Judith Thompson (née Coney). Co-Author of The Way of the Heart – The Rajneesh Movement. 1986:2, p. 16.
– Hariprasad Chaurasia – an interview by Sw Devageet. 1986:3, pp. 6-7.
– On translating and editing Osho’s books. 05.01.1987.
– International network of translators. 08.04.1987.
– Crude propaganda campaign against Bhagwan. On film produced by U.S. Justice Department, interview with Echart Flöther a.o. 1987:5, p. 3.
– Turning on the inner music. An interview with Ma Prem Maneesha, Director of the Rajneesh Institute for Dancing by Sw Anand Nirbija. 1987:6, p. 7.
– Interview with Sw Anand Maitreya. 1987:6, p. 10.
– Interview with Ma Prem Turiya and Sw Veet Kamal. 1987:6, p.16.
– Interview with Sw Prem Prasad, chancellor of the Rajneesh International University of Mysticism. 1987:7, p. 11.
– Interview with Ma Prem Pradeepa. 1987:7, p. 13.
– Interview with Sw Devaraj about the new book ‘Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh on Basic Human Rights.” 1987:8, pp. 4-5.
– Major Inaugurates Krishnamurti Memorial In Rajneeshdham. 1987:9, p. 1.
– “Islington library books are being used to propagate an anti-cult organization. Books about Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh and other new religious movements have been inserted with cards asking: “Have you a problem concerning a Cult?” and a contact number for Cultists Anonymous, the group that was discredited in a recent Guardian article about INFORM.” 1987:9, p. 2.
– AIDS Precaution Programme for your protection. 1987:9, p. 11.
– Interview with Sw Devageet and Ma Prem Nityamo. 1987:9, p. 12.
Heading: Editorial. What we stand for.
“‘The New British Times’ is three issues old today. From an idea shared by a few sannyasins has grown this beautiful expression of Bhagwan’s message with all His lovers – in English. Yes, there is a thriving ‘Rajneesh Times’ in German, another in Dutch. There is ‘Rajneesh’ in U.S.A. but there was no newspaper in England solely committed to putting its whole heart behind Bhagwan and His vision.
In the aftermath of Sheela’s failure to make a power structure from the sannyasin community throughout the world there was pain and confusion. Out of that mental turmoil other newsheets were born. Their purpose was more to do with interaction among sannyasins themselves than with setting Bhagwan’s message out clearly and without editorial bias. Most of these early expressions of pain have now ceased to exist, some continue to rehash the past and miss the present upsurge of heartfulness.
It was from this deeply felt wish to make His message and vision available again that ‘The New British Rajneesh Times’ was born. Originally the name was going to be ‘Mevlana Bhagwan’ – a new name for a new venture. We put our ideas to Hasya and got back the message that Bhagwan wants all His newspapers to be called the ‘Rajneesh Times’.
We knew only too well that the old name would carry the shadow of Sheela with it. We knew it would irritate already inflamed minds; quite clearly Bhagwan knew it too. Our wholehearted purpose of being one hundred percent behind Bhagwan began to be a reality when we accepted the name ‘The Rajneesh Times’ – a great device. But we called it ‘The New British Rajneesh Times’ just in case some people may confuse us with something from the past.” (The New British Rajneesh Times, 1986:3, p. 2)
Gilhus writes in ‘The Joking Guru’
“Although Bhagwan was the master of the joke, the custom of telling jokes was used by his adherents as well. For instance in council meeting (Mullan 1983:133). Jokes are also part of the literature of the movements, apart from in Bhagwan’s books. The first number of the British edition of ‘The Rajneesh Times’ started with three jokes on its front page, pertaining respectively to Jesus, to the Rajneeshee themselves and to politicians. These jokes were probably deliberately chosen, reflecting central concerns of the movement in Britain at that time: how to characterize itself in relation to traditional religion, how to establish a self-image and how to describe its relationship to the surrounding world.” (Gilhus 1997, p. 129)
(Note: The three jokes were:
1. What are the four signs that Jesus was a nice Jewish boy? – He lived at home until He was 30. He went into his father’s business. He thought His mother was a virgin. His mother thought He was God.
2. Why did the Rajneeshee cross the road? – To buy the other side.
3. What do you call a politician who never lies, never exaggerates, always does what he thinks is right and never listens to pressure groups? – A failure).
* Rajneesh. The Newspaper. March 11th 1986 – April 1987. Boulder, USA. Monthly at irregular intervals. Editors: Sw Anand Bodhisattva & Ma Prem Prasado. Published by New Day Enterprises, Boulder, CO, USA. 12 pages. Illustrated. $2.50. Subscription 1st Class U.S $32.
(In stock: 10 issues).
Rajneesh. The Newspaper. Selected articles:
– Bhagwan in Athens: You’ll see me in many jails. 11.03.1986.
– Interview with Tom Robbins on Bhagwan “The most dangerous man since Jesus Christ.” 13.08.1986, pp. 9,15.
– Sw Anand Subhuti writes from the sannyas scene in Marin County. 13.08.1986, p. 12.
– Heading: U.S. government conspiracy to silence Bhagwan. An interview with Ma Prem Hasya, Cologne, West Germany, August 2, 1986. Excerpt: We won’t let Bhagwan be silenced. He’s given the world center project all of His juice. Before He departed [from Portugal] He said, “Direct all your attention and energy toward it.” It shall be a powerful center, where public relations, the dissemination of His words and legal matters can be handled. Institutes will work out of the center, we’re going to bring the whole “World Circus” back together again. The work with the press will begin there, and from there it will be possible to have an overview to make sure that His work continues.” (24.09.1986, pp. 12,16)
Heading: News from the Rajneesh Info Line
“I’ve just seen the first issue of the new RAJNEESH newspaper. It’s absolutely beautiful, and such a pleasure to feel this connection with Bhagwan and His lovers around the world. It’s really happening, and you can subscribe by sending $20.00 to New Day Enterprises, 1546 28th Street, Suite 223, Boulder, CO 80303. Another paper is being published in Massachusetts, called TAO CONNECTION. Their address is 103 Sewall, Brookline, MA 02146.” (VIHA Bay Area Connection, 1986:1)
“We wanted to write to you personally to give you an update on what has been happening here at RAJNEESH: The Newspaper. As you are probably aware, the financial status of the paper has been on shaky ground for some time now. A few months ago we began publishing appeals for support. Shortly after that the paper decreased in size from 20 to 12 pages. You may have been wondering what is happening next?
We wanted you to be aware that this may be the last issue of the newspaper that you will receive in newspaper format.
We have experienced so much over the past year. From the beginning, we tried to provide the most beautiful paper with as many pages of discourse, news of Bhagwan and His friends, and other articles of interest that we possibly could afford. It was so easy, especially in the first months, to spend “just a leeetle bit more…” than we could afford –
hoping for an increase in subscriptions
hoping for more advertising to happen next month
hoping that the graphics business we formed would support us personally so that we could donate more time and energy to the paper.
It seems as if we have tried everything we could think of to make it all hold together. But it hasn’t turned out to be enough. We have the money to put out this issue of the paper. We don’t know if it will be possible to continue… if possible, we’ll see you next month.” (Insert from the Staff of RAJNEESH: The Newspaper. 04.02.1987)
“This is the second version of the sixth Newsletter since Bhagwan began His world tour. The original sixth Newsletter we were getting together on Crete, but before we could mail it to you, we were off again.” (Bhagawati from London in: Rajneesh. The Newspaper, 20.05.1986)
* VIHA Bay Area Connection. A Monthly Newsletter for friends of Bhagwan. Vol. I, No.1, March 21st, 1986 – . Monthly. First issue two photocopied pages on pink paper. Later 6 issues/year on 36 pages, 4 of them in color. Digital version available as pdf from January issue 2010. Published by Viha Publishing, Berkeley, CA. Subscriptions by 1st class mail: $3/half year. Donations welcome.
Change of title to Viha – New Monthly Newsletter, then to Viha News and finally Viha Connection.
Heading in first issue: Spring comes, and His flowers grow by themselves
“A small team of us, Rito, Shiva, Sahajo and Duripor met a few days ago. Out of that meeting, and with the help from Niresh, Sikha, Ramita and Devendra this newsletter was born. We didn’t know exactly where we were heading. There was only a perfume of leela in the air and sparkles in the eyes… And the excitement of taking the challenge: giving this issue to you by Enlightenment Day Celebration…
Besides news articles, you may send us articles sharing your feelings on anything that is important to you. An example of the subjects that might be juicy these days is: Is there life after the ranch…? Please send your comments to Community Dialogue c/o VIHA newsletter…
With your assistance, we can distribute VIHA at all sannyasin events free of charge. To be able to afford it, we ask you to help your newsletter, the community and yourself by advertising in VIHA. And YES, you can subscribe to a free newsletter: you’ll insure that you won’t miss any issue, it will be delivered to your doorstep.
We, folks at Viha, want to keep the newsletter as alive and dynamic as our community. So, expect some experimentation both in format and contents. Or better, give us your feedback, tell us what you like and also, how we can make VIHA more useful and enjoyable to you. Even better, if you have a few spare hours a week, join our team. We need people who like to write, edit, call sannyasin houses, type, draw cartoons, manage and keep records, work with the printer, answer calls, make interviews, and have fun, while working with other sannyasins…
in love, His friends at VIHA Publishing.” (VIHA Bay Area Connection, 1986:1)
Bhagawati writes on early newsletters and Viha Connection
“In the beginning there was the Rajneesh Newsletter – a few huge yellow-colored sheets with discourses by Osho and at times Yatri’s so endearing cartoons. The Sannyas Magazine was implemented toward the end of the Pune One era, to be followed up with the Rajneesh Times in Rajneeshpuram. This was to be a newspaper spreading only positive news, yet had to fold in the wake of the autumn 1985 demise. However, a few friends, Bhasha, Hina, Maitreya and Bodhi, picked it up again calling it the Rajneesh Newspaper and managed to spread the word for a while longer. Remember, no internet in those days!
A future event began to unfold when Dhanyam and Avinasho met on the Ranch, in the summer of 1985. He was a bus driver and she a cleaner in Raidas. Avinasho says, “One day I got on his bus, we hugged, and that was how it all began! We left the Ranch separately as he wanted to visit his family in New York, but in December 1985 we met up in Laguna Beach where we lived for two months. In the spring of 1986 we moved north to the San Francisco Bay Area and took over the Rajneesh Viha Meditation Center, which so far had existed pretty much on paper only.”
One of the first things they embarked on was to publish the Viha – New Monthly Newsletter exactly for March 21st, 1986, Osho’s Enlightenment Day, with the help of several sannyasin friends: It consisted of two pages on pink paper. One of the sentences on this historical newsletter reads: “We, folks at Viha, want to keep the newsletter as alive and dynamic as our community.” And this they have done for sure during the last two-and-a-half decades! They’ve come a long way from the 2 photocopied pages to a digitally printed 36 pages, 4 of them in color. Not only that, recently there’s an electronic version available too.
The Viha Connection, as it is now known, has for all this time connected sannyasins throughout our wordwide caravanserai with information, discourse selections and gossip; for their Special Section, sannyasins from all over the globe contribute their experiences and insights. Lately, the obituary page has become more crowded, but then we do celebrate everything!
Avinasho says that “Over the 25 years of its existence, many people have helped to put the Viha Connection together. We have had different editors: Duripor, Sono, Asana, and Sagar in the very early years, but Nartana, Prartho, Suvarna, and Sangeet have been the main ones. We have had only one designer, our multi-talented Shanti Poona, who always goes the extra mile to make the magazine look great. The editorial board, which advises the editors, has seen its share of changes too. Currently the members are Aneesha, Anila, Harideva, Nirman, Prembandu, and Yogena.
“Every issue starts out with a meeting of the editorial board. These meetings are always great fun. We meditate together, chat, gossip, snack, and toss around ideas for a topic for the Special Section. We finally come up with a subject, discuss what we want to ask our writers, and whom to invite. The literary editor then sends me a draft for the invitation, with Osho quotes, and we ask the board members for their input. After we are all in agreement, I send out the invitations to our writers.
“Apart from the Special Section there are our regular features, like Bhagawati’s and Dhanyam’s gossipy articles and Deepak’s Astrology column. When, for whatever reason, one of those does not appear in an issue we get calls and emails from upset readers who want to make sure that the column will be back in the next issue.
“Other articles tend to just kind of happen. I sometimes start worrying that we wouldn’t have enough material to fill the magazine, but then a review of a new book by a sannyasin arrives, or someone sends an email about an experience he or she has just had and I see a great article in the making, or another person tells us about a friend with an amazing therapeutic approach.
“Even after more than two decades I still love every stage of putting the magazine together, and every time a new issue arrives from the printer I am really excited. These days we mail to about 35 countries worldwide, and I want to say a special thank you to our ‘mailing angels’ who help us keep the overseas cost down: Abhilas in the Netherlands, Khabira in Germany, Shelley in the UK, Bhagawati in Bali, Shahido in Australia, Sandesh in New Zealand, and Naina and Chinmaya in India.”
The publication of the Viha Connection depends on annual subscriptions and advertising (the rates are very low). “Sannyasins like to share everything, and unfortunately that also goes for subscriptions,” says Dhanyam. So he has for years subsidized the magazine with his own money. “The magazine is our pride and joy,” adds Avinasho. “You could say that we feel about it like parents of an adolescent: We would love for it to be financially self-sufficient, but if that doesn’t happen, then we will of course continue to support it. It is really a wonderful way for us to express out love for Osho and give others the chance to express theirs.
“From the many little notes we receive when people renew their subscription, we know how important the VC is to many lovers of Osho, especially those who live far away from other sannyasins and for whom the magazine often is their only connection to Osho. Sometimes it’s just a sentence like ‘Devoured every page of the last issue.’ or ‘Read it cover to cover every time,’ but we also get many longer letters, for example from the prisoners we give free subscriptions to (one of them on death row in Alabama), in which readers express their gratitude and appreciation.”
So yes, Viha Connection is going strong and as a paper magazine unique with its diverse approach, bringing much enjoyment every two months.” (www.oshonews.com, 20.03.2011)
“The editor of the San Francisco Viha News, Ma Soni, was in London this week, spending 24 hours before travelling to Cambridge for a three days’ stay. She was returning home from the Frankfurt Book Fair, dropping in on England en route.
Soni paid a lightning visit to the Sannyas News Office to wish the publication well and to suggest mutual syndication which was readily agreed. Viha News is unlike Sannyas News in that it is integral to the Viha Centre in the Bay Area. At present it is distributed to 300 Sannyas houses in the vicinity. It is now actively looking at a forward step in its growth and Soni discussed the rapid growth of the Sannyas News with some animation.” (Sannyas News, 14.11.1986)
On Viha Connection
“We encourage and support friends who offer meditations in their homes or in rented spaces and list events like these in the Bulletin Board in the Viha Connection, the magazine we put out every second month. This magazine started out as a one-page newsletter for the local community and has grown into a beautifully laid-out 60 page publication with subscribers not only all over the US but in almost 30 counties all over the world.” (www.oshoviha.org/About_.html 30.01.2002)
Dhanyam on Viha Connection
“I don’t remember when we changed the name to Viha Connection, but we were getting more and more subscriptions from outside the Bay Area, so I wanted the name of the magazine to reflect that.
We used to publish every month, and when the magazine kept growing in pages it became too much work and too expensive to publish so often, so we changed it to every second month…
Good editing has always been very important to us, and good, professional editors are hard to find in the sannyas world. So when one resigned, it sometimes took time to find the next one. The different editors had different reasons for moving on through the years.
The Viha Connection loses money, especially now in the era of digital publications, so we have to be very conservative now.” (Dhanyam. E-mail. 20.12.2016)
– Gypsy Soul / Anand Subhuti. Viha Connection, 2001:4. Page 28-29.
– Celebrate and Rejoice / Sw Chaitamya Keerti. Viha Connection, 2011:4. Page 24-25.
* sannyas info. August 1986 – November 1987. Published by Khalaas Rajneesh Information Center, Skagen, Denmark. Five photocopied issues each on four colored A4 pages. Distributed freely. In English and Danish. Illustrated.
(In stock: 5 issues).
sannyas info. Selected news.
– Die Rajneesh Times has in its issue from 27.06.1986 a ‘Kommentar Der Rajneesh Times’ on Bhagwan’s Odyssey compiled by Ma Gyan Tigra.
– Die Rajneesh Times has in its 1987:12 issue an interview with a biologist in DDR, Jakob Segal, from taz, 18.02.1987. In the interview he reports on U.S. military tests with Aids in prisoners and the first case in New York already in 1979.
– The Last Testament, volume 1, is reviewed by Sw Anand Bodhisattva in: Rajneesh. The Newsletter. 16.07.1986.
– An interview with Rajneesh by Ma Prem Arup phoning the Dutch Rajneesh Times was carried in its issue from July 1986. In same issue also an interview with his secretary Ma Prem Hasya.
– If you have any letters you would like to reach Bhagwan or Hasya, you can write to the following address, from where all correspondence will be forwarded:
Ma Anand Bhagawati, 8 Hampstead High Street, Hampstead, London NW 3, England.
* New Nation News. Newsletter of the Wild Goose Company. February 1986 – 1987. Zürich, Switzerland. Published by Cosmic Energy Connections (CEC) for the Wild Goose Company. 6 issues/year. 12 pages. Illustrated.
Interviews and talks with Michael Barnett.
* Liberation Times. 1986 – 198? Siena, Italy. Editor: Sw Deva Majid. Tabloid format. 24 pages. Illustrated.
Periodico bimestrale in lingua italiana e inglese.
“Hasya in Miastro talks about Bhagwan. The sudden arrival of Ma Prem Hasya, with Arup and Jayesh, in Italy to talk about what happened after the departure, during the Rajneesh odyssey, and to bring us the latest news of Bhagwan. Amazing anecdotes and sensational events in Bhagwan’s secretary’s report in front of two hundred sannyasins.” (Liberation Times, Oct/Nov 1986:3)
Continues in: Part Seven. Poona Two / 7.10 Periodicals.
6.13 Returning to Poona
Soon to leave Bombay
“After a couple of months, Neelam, whom we saw rarely but with great joy, told us that Osho wanted a much bigger space and so they had told all the influential Indians to look for a place where they could build and where he could stay with his disciples. They were looking in the north, in the Himalayas, and also in and around Mumbai, but they didn’t find a suitable place…
In November and December, the situation with the owner of the house in Juhu became more and more difficult and the Indian police started showing signs of impatience, seeing that the whole movement was congregating in this small area of Mumbai and was highly visible…
Toward the end of the year, Neelam informed Nandi that Osho would almost certainly move back to the old commune in Pune because they couldn’t find a decent place anywhere else and the situation in the house had gone too far. She also told us not to say anything officially till the situation was clear.
Before New Year’s Eve, Neelam asked Nandi to go to Pune with a few women in order to prepare Osho’s room. She would follow with the Master as soon as everything was ready.” (Rosciano 2013, pp. 288ff)
The attempts on finding a place for Osho in or around Bombay didn’t have any success, which was also due to the fact that Indian sannyasins were not able to collect money for a place for him there. (Narendra. Interview. Dehradun. 04.10.2007)
Leaving for Poona
“Osho’s body is not keeping well and He has to discontinue speaking for a few days. In the meantime, some friends from Bombay are looking for a new place for him…
Every day more and more sannyasins are arriving from the West. It has been almost five months now that He has been staying as a guest in Sumila. The neighbours are getting very much upset with His presence and the increasing flow of visitors. One evening we come to know that Osho is leaving for Poona in a couple of days. So we start packing and feel happy to go to Poona with him.” (Jyoti 1994, p. 131)
Neelam recalls moving from Bombay to Poona
“Osho had an eerie prescience for trouble. We heard how, in Uruguay, he had talked increasingly urgent about the need to leave Punta del Este; and sure enough, his secretary had got him out of the house one hour before the police were issued with an order to detain him. And something similar had happened in Manali.
Now, in Bombay, in January 1987, this was happening again. We had been planning to leave for Poona at 7am the following day, and had arranged a convoy of seven or eight flower-decked cars to accompany him on the four-hour drive across the Western Ghats. But the night before, at around 10 o’clock, Osho called me in to say that we would be leaving that night at midnight.
Without hesitation this time, I called up the ashram in-charge and told them to expect us seven hours early, and with about three of the cars that had been prepared to leave, we drove through the night reaching Poona at four in the morning.
What we learned soon after arriving was that a group of Hindu fundamentalists had arranged for a mob of protestors to block the main and only road from Bombay into the city to bar Osho from entering Poona. Unaware that we had already passed through, they gathered on the outskirts early that same morning, accompanied by the Poona police commissioner himself, with exactly this intention. They had made a case to the police that Osho’s presence in Poona would be a “disturbance to the peace and harmony of the city” and a “danger to the traditional fabric of Indian culture.”
Osho’s decision to leave seven hours earlier, meant everyone was safely ensconced in the gated compound of the Koregaon Park commune well before the protestors even found out that their bird had flown the coop! That was January 4, 1987.” (Neelam. In: Savita 2014, p. 207)
Osho talking on his staying in polluted Bombay, jails in the United States, the ride to Poona and his arrival to the ashram. See: The Messiah (1987). Vol I, Chapter 5. 10.01.87.
Poona Two 1987-1990
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