Then and Now in the USA with Osho

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Prateeksha writes from Osho Fort Worth in Texas …

It’s been 30 years since I said ‘yes’ to Osho at Rajneeshpuram, the city located in the high Sierras of Oregon, USA. In 1983, even though Osho was in silence at the time, thousands of people were residents, glimpsing him in daily drive-by as we lined the road at 1pm, playing small musical instruments to entertain our Master – He had the broadest smile you can imagine, loving every minute of it and so did we.

With every arrival at the Portland airport being welcomed with a sack lunch and bus ride to the Ranch, thousands more attended the summer festivals and the energy was the highest I’ve ever felt – an amazing sense of oneness and joy permeating the very air we breathed.

The words of “we are family, we are family” kept ringing in many of our heads, and our broad smiles echoed the invitation of Osho’s caravanserai to “come, come, yet again, come!”

The Ranch was definitely, “The way of the heart.”

Ma Divya, Osho therapist and group leader at the Ranch, said in a group I participated in, that the people who were coming to the Ranch, were so far ahead in consciousness than what all of us had in Pune One times.

I felt that was true also in Pune Two. The three years while I was there with Osho, I feel that my consciousness expanded enormously in many, many ways, especially with growing awareness of whether I was feeling ‘aloneness’ or ‘loneliness’, and out of just that awareness, I began experiencing more comfort with being alone.

That comfort in being alone has grown over the years and I am now equally happy to be either with friends, fellow meditators, or when I am alone.

In Pune Two, Osho began taking us deeper and deeper into meditation and for me, the Watcher was born.

And when He requested that we wear white robes each evening to Satsang Darshan*, the energy in Buddha Hall became pure Light Consciousness.

Toward the very end of his life, and during one of the last times he came out, at the conclusion of a beautiful Satsang evening, after he had guided us into meditation and let-go, he asked us to come back (and sit up) and then continued with us in total pin-drop silence.

Some of us heard that when he later arrived at Lao Tzu House where he lived in the commune, rather than going inside immediately as was his custom he paused and looked toward Buddha Hall and listened to the silence and then said to a few residents of Lao Tzu House, “I can leave now; they don’t need me anymore.”

And then, shortly thereafter, he was gone. In looking back, I know he was preparing us for our ultimate awakening, and for going back into the world and ‘giving back’.

A very rich 30 years have passed…

In a recent email, my friend Dhanyam, at Osho Viha in Marin, gave me some interesting news: “With worldwide yearly sales of 3-4 million books, more than 26 million YouTube hits, and more than 500 Osho websites, Osho is all over the world. We are now in the Internet world, and people connect to Osho via computer.”

Dhanyam said, “For the sincere seekers, I think you still need to do groups and connect with sannyasins and centers. Computer connections are easy and cheap but they are not heart connections.”

Personally, I find, in talking with people about Osho, that they are very curious about him and ask intelligent questions. The older they are, the less they ‘get’ him (programming!) and the 40 years and younger age group, move fast if they are interested.

The Internet is one sign of change, and it seems that more people are now questioning, more than they did 30 years ago, not only religion, but everything – making them ripe and ready for spiritual evolution.

I started the Osho Fort Worth center in July 2010 when I’d just participated in a weekend meditation retreat at Osho Zorba Meditation Center, in Carollton, Texas. Several people from my weekly meditation classes also attended the retreat and were in the car with me and I heard myself saying that I was going to start an Osho Center in my home. And everyone went, “Yipee!” So that was the beginning. Almost all of the people who come, participate in my meditation classes. And they have all, except one, been initiated into Osho sannyasins, some by Arun, some by Vedant and one by me. Our Osho Fort Worth center consists of meeting weekly at Osho Satsang in a rented room of Unity Church Fort Worth. We are small in numbers – a good crowd is about 8-10 people and a small attendance might be two!

Recently, after an Osho’s discourse from his book, I Am That, at a weekly Osho Fort Worth Satsang, those attending began a discussion on Osho’s viewpoint on religion. Everyone but two had a Catholic upbringing. They were interrupting and talking over each other with such strong energy, as they expressed their revolt against being indoctrinated into Catholicism. They all felt they had been entrenched in a belief system their parents embraced and passed on to them, impacting how they have experienced life. They are energetically ‘bursting at the seams’ to find someone or something to support their emergence as a ‘new’ man or ‘new’ woman.

One woman who has come several times to Satsang, and who is not a sannyasin, remarked how each time that she comes to Satsang, she is learning more and more from Osho, and how liberating He is! She has been rebelling against her programing and upbringing all her life. And the other former Catholics present, said the same thing.

With this new and ever growing understanding about Osho’s viewpoints on the ways we are conditioned and how oftentimes, it keeps us either in repression or rebellion, these people here in conservative Fort Worth, in the USA, are finding their way to spiritual liberation.

More and more Americans are exploring life through taking risks, stepping out, embracing change; shedding all kinds of programming and living in what feels true, authentic to each of them, and not a belief system that was passed down.

Osho’s a great fit for Americans and American issues!

Warm hearts, bright smiles, lightness in the air at Osho Fort Worth, as we celebrate, life, love, laughter, here-now.

* commonly called Osho White Robe Meetings

Govind PrateekshaGovind Prateeksha was born and raised in Texas. After working as an executive secretary, marriage and two children, she was widowed at age 44 just after having moved to Nashville, Tennessee. She took sannyas in Rajneeshpuram and after Osho had left, went with Wadud and Waduda on the “Buddhafield Express” around the US and Canada, on a “grief counselling” journey. In Pune 2 she worked in the Esoteric Sciences Department and is presently running the Osho Fort Worth Center. OshoFortworth

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