Finding Osho on Crete

Remembering Here&Now

Marc sets out from Munich to find Osho on Crete during the world tour.

It was the 16th of February 1986 and Osho had just landed on Crete. In the Munich commune were I was living at that time, the news spread fast.

I had been living in the Munich commune for more than a year and much had changed since Osho had left America for his World tour. There was confusion about what would happen next and was there still a commune? There was nothing to hold me inside anymore, for it was a cold winter in Bavaria and the sun was shining in Greece!

After saying goodbye and hugging my friends I went to the railway station, bought a one way ticket from Munich to Athens, 2 pretzel and a liter of apple spritzer. The rest would come later. No reservation, no idea where to change trains (no mobile phones at the time), no clue if he would still be there by the time I would arrive, but life is a gamble and Greece was warm.

It would take me 24 hours by train through Germany, Austria, Hungary, Yugoslavia, Bulgaria and Greece. In Athens there should be a boat to Crete. From there I had to find out if and where Osho was. Never been there, so let’s get on that train!

Driving through Austria in winter is wonderful. Mountains and trees full of snow, little villages along the railroad. It felt a bit odd being on my own again after years of living and working in the commune, now sitting and staring out of the window, going south into the unknown.

Starting in Hungary, I could sense the Iron Curtain hanging over the country; more military, more poverty. Grey houses and buildings looked older, and the landscape more open. Fields, barren in wintertime, and the train went on, with snow on both sides.

Coming from the warm and lively Osho commune with fun and meditation, it felt as if the passengers were cloaked with a heavy depression, as if they were in hibernation. This feeling remained all the way through Hungary, Yugoslavia and Bulgaria. Grey was the colour of their clothing, grey the colour of their faces. In the dining car, there was only beer, bread and sausage to buy, or Schnitzel, Sauerkraut and Schnapps. Half dozing, I saw Greece appearing on the horizon.

From the Grecian border onwards, spring was in the air. There was a Cretan woman on the train and together we went smoothly from Athens to the harbour of Piraeus, took a boat and arrived the next day in the harbour of Chania, Crete. The sun was shining, people were friendly and open. Yet I did not know where Osho was on Crete, and if he was still on Crete – because you never knew with Osho.

The only way to ask those sunny Cretans for Osho’s place was to show my mala and signaling a question mark with my hands. They got it soon and showed me an article in a Cretan newspaper: Osho was in Agios Nikolaos, about 100 km from where I stood, on the other side of the Island. I boarded a bus and started to relax. It was light outside, the Greek were nice people and Osho was close.

Agios Nikolaos is a small fishing village with white houses and a blue sea. At the bus station I was told that many sannyasins were dropping in and there were rooms available in town. After moving into my new room with sea view and new friends, we went off to Darshan. Up on a hill there it was, a large house on a rock, overlooking the same sea as viewed from my room. On a large terrace I saw my master sitting under an olive tree, together with about 100 sannyasins … the sea as background and Osho speaking about Socrates.

Osho Crete

I had arrived and it felt simply divine.

Marc, Osho News

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