PLEASE TELL US SOMETHING ABOUT OSHO AND OSHODHARA?
11th December 1931, Osho was born in Kuchwara, a small village in Madhya Pradesh (India). His exceptional talent was visible right from his childhood. He would question every thing and experiment a lot. When he was seven his Nana (grandpa), who had brought him up, passed away. But his death came to Osho as a big learning opportunity. Set to experience death himself, Osho lay in the bed like a corpse vigilantly waiting for the death to approach him. Without his knowing he must have entered Samadhi, for the next morning he asked all relatives not to weep and cry as Nanaji (grandpa) still existed formless and that he had experienced it last night.
At the age of 21 Osho attained enlightenment or what we call ‘sambodhi’ (supreme knowledge). He was in Jabalpur (India), studying for his post graduation and also keenly pursuing his spiritual journey. On the particular night of attaining sambodhi he was in a ‘baggia’ (garden) called ‘Bhanwar Tal’, sitting under ‘Maulshree’ tree. The date and time: 21st March 1953; 2 A.M. The experience of Sambodhi comes to man rarely. We celebrate 21st March every year as his ‘sambodhi’ day.
Osho completed his post graduation with top honours and joined university as a professor teaching philosophy. He taught for about eight years. During this period he also travelled to various parts of India participating in religious congregations and seminars, giving discourses. Since he spoke on spirituality from his inner experience, having realised the truth directly, he often confronted his co-speakers who merely repeated the scriptures, without knowing the truth. Osho felt deep compassion for the ignorant and had liked every individual to reach enlightenment, experience the bliss within, and put end to their miseries.
In 1970 Osho gave up his university job to start ‘Neo Sanyas Movement’ which for his disciples consisted of parallel running of household life and spiritual search. Osho carved a new path to self-realisation without passing through renunciation. Osho introduced dynamic meditation techniques befitting the needs of modern day man. It led his sannyasins through catharsis, empting out their pent up aggressions and eccentricities, before entering deep relaxation, waiting for enlightenment to happen. The ‘Nav Sanyas Movement’ spread fast and people in large numbers joined to become his sannyasins. Osho thus initiated a new wave in spirituality.
Osho was distinguished in being an enlightened person and at the same time a great scholar. He was an eloquent speaker. His listeners were mesmerised with his speeches. He explained the eternal truth, the supreme knowledge, to the benefit of all in many different ways and forms. It is true that the eternal truth can never be expressed but experienced; still he tried to present it before us in all its dimensions so that as and when the actual experience comes, one would not be found wanting. Osho extensively used scriptures to speak on; it served the dual purpose of clarifying what the scriptures contained and to convey his own personal divine experience. Besides talks and discourses, Osho conducted meditation programs to guide his sannyasins to ultimate spiritual experience.
In 1974 ‘Shri Rajneesh Ashram’ was established in Pune (Maharashtra); (Rajneesh: birth name of Osho). Osho’s meditation techniques with catharsis support became immensely popular amongst the Westerners who flocked to Pune in large numbers. At one time Pune became the largest psychological healing centre in the world with more than five thousand people congregating there every day to practice meditation and attend discourses.
Osho’s commentaries, which covered almost all spiritual traditions in the world, have become invaluable treatises. He cleared the myth and mire collected around the original wisdom in these spiritual traditions. He spoke on Buddha, Mahaveera, Patanjali, Krishna, Rama, Sufi fakirs, sages from Tao and Zen traditions and saints from the West, presenting their teachings with the touch of his own distinguishing style and original thought. He brought new perspective to religion and spirituality.
In 1981 Osho moved with his disciples to USA to set up an international commune there called the Rajneeshpuram. His huge success and followings were not taken kindly by the American government and the commune by destroyed. Osho glob trotted in search of a true democratic country that would allow him to settle on its soil with his sannyasins. He travelled to 21 countries but none allowed him in. It is a serious commentary on the state of affairs in the so called democratic world. Freedom of speech is for name sake. Osho only addressed his followers. He did not force himself on any one. Finally Osho returned to Pune ashram. He left his body on 19th Jan 1990.
In 1997, Oshodhara, the live stream after Osho, came into being when Osho’s disciple Sw. Anand Siddhartha, now known as Osho Siddhartha, attained Sambodhi. There is an interesting aspect about coming into being of Oshodhara. Osho has explained in his discourses the importance of seven year period in everyone’s life. He himself went through life-transforming experiences one after the other at intervals of seven years. He lost his grandpa at the age of seven, his childhood mate at the age of 14, which experiences made him to seriously search for the truth of life. At 21, we know, he attained enlightenment. Seven years after Osho’s demise Osho Siddhartha attains Sambodhi and Oshodhara begins.
After Osho’s demise, for seven years the spiritual path illuminated by him engulfed in the dark. With Osho Shailendra’s enlightenment the illumination has returned. I had likened to compare this with the course of Nile River which originates in east Africa, traverses several kilometres and then disappears underground only to resurface again and resume its seaward journey. Oshodhara represents the resurfacing of the stream of Osho’s teachings.
Oshodhara’s coming into being can also be likened to sprouting of a seed sown by Osho which germinated underground in the dark for seven years.
Oshodhara is the latest mystery school where meditation is taught, practiced and researched on scientific lines. Osho Siddhartha is a trained scientist. Drawing from his scientific background, Osho’s vast reservoir of spiritual knowledge, and his own direct experience of God, Osho Siddhartha has chiselled out a technology for step by step progressing towards the ultimate spiritual experience. It could not have been simpler than that. People in large numbers are benefiting from the Dhyan Samadhi programs developed here. The number of those experiencing enlightenment after passing through these programs is growing.
This, in conclusion, is a brief introduction to Osho and Oshodhara.