Mohan Singh/Michael Lyons has been scamming and conning like this for 25 years or more. Complaints have been made to the police. Evidently he still has not been imprisoned. He uses threats and violence to evade justice and avoids having his photo taken. Fortunately, there does seem to be an internet campaign against him but unfortunately certain sites that supposedly protect against guru abuse have not passed on information about Mohan over the years - these “bad”sites include Guruphiliac (Jody Radzik) and Guru Ratings (Sarlo) possibly because Sarlo is a staunch Osho supporter.
One scandalous case is Sarlo's suppression of repeated attempts to alert his list about a compulsive rapist and Osho follower for several decades, Mohan Singh (Michael Lyons), who is being sentenced at this moment for a series of rapes against different women.
Never Born - Never Died - Only visited this planet Earth between December 11, 1931 and January 19, 1990. With these literally immortal words, Osho both dictates his epitaph and dispenses with his biography. Having previously removed his name from everything, he finally agrees to accept "Osho," explaining that it is derived from William James' "oceanic." "It is not my name," he says, "it is a healing sound."
His thousands of hours of extemporaneous talks, spoken to people around the world over a twenty-year period, are all recorded, often on video -- tapes that can be listened to anywhere by anyone, when, Osho says, "that same silence will be there."
The transcriptions of these talks are now published in hundreds of titles in dozens of languages.
In these talks, the human mind is put under the microscope as never before, analyzed to the smallest wrinkle. Mind as psychology, mind as emotion, mind as mind/body; mind as moralist, mind as belief; mind as religion, mind as history, mind as politics and social evolution -- all examined, studied, and integrated. Then graciously left behind in the essential quest for transcendence.
In the process Osho exposes hypocrisy and humbug wherever he sees it. As the author, Tom Robbins so eloquently puts it: "I recognize the emerald breeze when it rattles my shutters. And Osho is like a hard, sweet wind, circling the planet, blowing the beanies off of rabbis and popes, scattering the lies on the desks of the bureaucrats, stampeding the jackasses in the stables of the powerful, lifting the skirts of the pathologically prudish and tickling the spiritually dead back to life."
"Jesus had his parables, Buddha his sutras, Mohammed his fantasies of the Arabian night. Osho has something more appropriate for a species crippled by greed, fear, ignorance and superstition: he has cosmic comedy."
"What Osho is out to do, it seems to me, is pierce our disguises, shatter our illusions, cure our addictions and demonstrate the self-limiting and often tragic folly of taking ourselves too seriously."
So what to say of Osho? The ultimate deconstructionist? A visionary who becomes the vision? Certainly a proposal to existence - that it is everyone's birthright to enjoy that same oceanic experience of true individuality. For that, Osho says, "There is only one path, which goes inwards, where you will not find a single human being, where you will only find silence, peace."
A conclusion? There are no full stops in the Osho vision, but a helping hand towards understanding ourselves:
"I would like to say to you: Science is the ultimate value. And there are only two kinds of sciences: one, objective science, that decides about the outside world; and two, subjective science, which up to now has been called religion. But it is better not to call it religion. It is better to call it the science of the inner, and to divide science into a science of the outer, and a science of the inner - objective science and subjective science. But make it one solid whole, and science remains the ultimate value - nothing is higher than that." - Osho
This article, unusual for a "personal article" in that it is not about the author at all (unless you want to get metaphysical) appeared in the first issue of Osho Pulse, when we hadn't much idea of who the readers might be or how familiar with Osho and his work. In fact, we even had a glossary of terms we thought might be unfamiliar and need explaining, mercifully not included here. The bio is included for historical interest and... who knows who is going to stumble across this 'zine?]The Real Osho
a short biography
by Sw Deva Sarlo
ith apologies to Lao Tzu (who probably doesn't really mind), the Osho that can be described is not the real Osho. Okay, but what to do? Leave a blank page? Shrinking not from this challenge, I offer the following collection of history and impression:
Osho was born Rajneesh Chandra Mohan in 1931 in Kuchwada, a small village in India. He is currently in a state of disembodiment, or death, having left his body in l990. From an early age he questioned everything, a process which became more and more intense until the age of 21, when he became enlightened, or arrived at the ultimate consciousness/self-knowing he says is the birthright of us all.
He completed his university degree and took a post teaching philosophy, actually getting paid for his favourite outward activities, expounding and questioning. Over the years, his lecturing became more of a traveling affair, to the point where he would criss-cross India many times a year. He acquired a notoriety as a speaker with outrageous views on everything and atttracted enormous crowds.
Seeing, however, that those who came only to hear his words were not being transformed, he changed his tack and started working with an intimate group of disciples, who practiced his meditations and were willing to experiment with their lives. When he settled in Bombay seekers from around the world started arriving. He had been preparing for them for years by devouring up to ten books a day: literature, religion, philosophy and psychology, whatever it took to speak the language of these seekers.
It wasn't long before this group needed much more space, so he moved to the leafy and wealthy enclave of Koregaon Park, 100 miles away in Poona. Big-name therapists from all over the world came, along with thousands and thousands of other seekers of all kinds. This was the therapy era; the "Shree Rajneesh Ashram" became known as the biggest and most intense growth facility on the planet and "Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh" was at the centre of it.
At its peak, he pulled the rug out from everybody's feet by suddenly moving to America to conduct his biggest experiment, Rajneeshpuram, a city built from scratch in the Oregon desert. He called his communes an experiment to provoke God. Rajneeshpuram was called, depending whose "side" you were on, an affront to Oregon's land-use laws, an ecological model years ahead of its time, a fascist concentration camp, a four-year therapy group to help us learn to deal creatively with authoritarian structures by recognizing dominance/ submission patterns in ourselves. And much, much more. Hundreds of millions of dollars and as many people-hours were invested in this city-experiment and then…
He pulled the rug again, flying off the Ranch as rumours of his arrest and a National Guard buildup were making a Waco-style bloodbath imminent. He was arrested anyway, sans bloodbath, 3000 miles away in North Carolina, and held for ten days without bail, including several days incommunicado during which, he said later, he was poisoned with thallium, a heavy metal with an insidious long-term toxicity, like mercury or lead. All this for alleged immigration offenses. He had pushed a few buttons.
Back in India after a successful world tour – where success is measured by the number of countries (21) that closed their doors to him because of America pressure – he revived the Poona ashram. His repeated pulling of the rug had scattered and disorganized his disciples, alienating more than a few, but within two years the Poona commune had tripled its original size, was as vibrant as ever and bursting with seekers who understood that a Zen master's shocks are to help them wake up.
Osho's last great rug event was the fairly ordinary one – in that everyone does it eventually – of leaving the body. He gave no explicit warning that this was coming, but signs were abundant in his last year. He changed his name several times – giving his publishers more than a few grey hairs – dropping the "Bhagwan" that had offended Indians for so long, and finally settling on the simple "Osho." He stopped speaking publicly, ending his last discourse with "The last word of Buddha was, ‘Sammasati.' Remember that you are a buddha – sammasati." In his last five months he introduced and led a new nightly meditation/ celebration/energy event with everybody wearing white robes.
He left the body in a very ordinary way shortly after his 58th birthday. What was not ordinary was the tremendous celebration that followed, with thousands of disciples dancing and singing as never before, while his body was in the meditation hall, while it was being burned, and when his ashes were brought back to the commune.
This set the stage for the continuation of his movement. More people than ever are coming to Poona, feeling his presence still there, especially in the nightly White Robe celebration. The commune's size has again doubled, now including five marble pyramids, a twelve-acre Zen park and a magnificent swimming pool, along with its multitude of therapy, creativity, work and meditation programs. Central to all the programs and processes is meditation, but not necessarily as something formal or stylized. The very vibe or ambience of the place encourages peering into one's inner nature, discovering one's inner truth, no matter what the activity. Dancing, painting, primal screaming, eating, working, sitting, talking, 1001 other things are all excuses and opportunities to look inside. In fact this can happen anywhere, but a buddhafield – an energy field created around an enlightened mystic – is a more supportive environment. With considerable justification, the Poona commune calls itself the largest spiritual health club in the world.
The key is Osho's presence, still tangible, and his unique approach to the growth/ consciousness game. Leaving no religious gasbag unpunctured, he makes sure that we approach the game with as few preconceptions as possible. And the most stubborn preconceptions are those inculcated by groups: nation, religion, class, race, gender, whatever. It is the individual, Osho says, that is real, not some artificial social construct – not even the commune that has formed around him. This approach allows for the diversity of processes available in his tent, and the refreshing absence of stultifying ideology. There is no worship of poverty or seriousness or consistency or tradition, no elevation of men over women, none of the encumbrances of business-as-usual religion.
It may seem evasive to say what Osho is not, but to me it feels better than to try to define him by saying – what? That he stands for freedom? Yeah, sure, but we have so many preconceptions about freedom cluttering our minds, it's better not to start down that path. His whole life, he has tried to destroy the expectations and belief structures we hold as a result of our conditioning. I should at least not add to that.
It is not easy to convey anything of significance about Osho – or anyone, for that matter – with mere biographical factoids. But the richness and diversity of his approach should be apparent in the other articles in this paper, for in their own individual ways, they are also "the real Osho." Of course, for the really real Osho, there is only first-hand experience.