Osho came into my life in a non-linear chronology that was perfect to unfold the controversy and wisdom in this spiritual master.
I started doing Osho Zen tarot card reading with my brother a year ago when he received the deck as a birthday gift. While I always got the insights I needed, I thought Osho was just a brand and an illustration on the card.
In a random conversation with a friend recently, he mentioned a documentary about Osho called ‘Wild Wild Country’. ‘Take it with a pinch of salt, it’s an interesting documentary worth checking out,’ he said.
That was the first time I learned that Osho is a real person, I thought it was a sign to check this man out.
Then, something made me question myself and how we form relationships. When I came across Alexi Pano’s interview and her book recommendation, I knew I have to get the book ‘Intimacy’ by Osho when she mentioned how it flipped her perception of love and relationship.
With the book and the documentary series, I started a mind-blowing journey getting to know Osho.
Enter the ‘cult’ teachings
I Googled the differences between a cult and a religion when I started writing this article. If I am reading Osho’s book and his books sold millions of copies around the world, how could it be a cult? It was not for me to decide.
I did however learn a few liberating truths about oneself and relationship.
Relating. Osho said that the foundation of love is a state of being and not a relationship. We can only love when we are able to be with ourselves and feel joy in our own presence.
When we have love in ourselves, we are capable of sharing and not depend on others to fill us with love. In that space, we are grateful for the connection but we do not need to possess.
‘The way of love is: people meeting, sharing, moving, a non-possessive, and non-dominating quality.’
Loyalty. This is the very source that got me onto the path of exploration — how is love exclusive to one person in a relationship? Why is there guilt when love is a natural state of being?
I don’t buy Osho’s idea of free love, but there is a certain degree of truth when he said that ‘love brings freedom while loyalty brings slavery’.
The only thing that is real is this present moment, and we have complete free will to choose who to love in every single moment.
‘Unless you are capable of saying no, your yes is meaningless.’
Accept yourself. Osho said that self-acceptance creates the soil in which love blooms. Only when we accept and love ourselves fully are we able to open ourselves to celebrate life in totality and receive the richness in it.
I almost laughed when Osho said that we ought to be ordinary in order to be extraordinary because everyone is striving to be exceptional. You can’t be more unique than you already are, isn’t it?
We can only share something when we have something.
‘Unless we give ourselves, we don’t give at all.’
What is right and what is wrong?
While I was soaking in all these information, I also learned about what happened in Oregon when the Rajneesh tribe started a city or a ‘cult’ that involved attempt murders, mass food poisoning and fraud in the process.
When Osho’s personal secretary who orchestrated the plot left him, eyes burning with anger, he called her b*tch and accused her of all crimes.
In that moment, I asked myself, wait a minute — is this the same master who talked about love, acceptance and freedom?
One thing stayed true in this episode — when Osho was angry, he showed it in totality without sugarcoating it. I hope his anger die in the next moment.
‘Live in such a way that each moment you are free from the past moment.’
Life is fun even when it hurts
At the end of the documentary, I guess this is what I have to say about Osho and his ‘cult’ — life is always fun even when it hurts.
We are so used to assigning a label and choosing a side, whether it’s right or wrong, love or hatred, joy or grieve.
What about experiencing love as a flow that is full of life, freedom and energy with total acceptance?
Our truth is a matter of free will and choice.
Who am I? What am I? Why am I?
Unless we dive deep into our own mystery, we will never have a foundation to be sure of what we choose as our truth.
‘When you are rooted in life, you are soft because you are not afraid.’ — Osho
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