Anand Chetna’s review of Krishna Prem’s book.
So just how did Michael Mogul, born into a Jewish family in Boston, turn into Swami Krishna Prem, male seeker of truth?
Let’s just say it has been a journey from here to here! Now this is not an autobiography, although there is stuff about his life. It is not a self-help book (heaven forbid!) although you may be helped immeasurably by reading it. It’s also not a religious tract, a would-be bible, nor is it out-and-out funny; while religiousness runs through it, you may find yourself referring to it daily as a source of inspiration, and Krishna Prem does have an amusing take on life and how to do it.
Gee You Are You is also the story of almost forty years with Osho. The biographical bits are dotted throughout the book, interspersed with how life is here and now. The author’s mother died when he was a baby, leaving him to be mothered by one of his sisters. His father died pretty early too, so essentially he grew up in a female household. Not a bad start for a man who later on would fall in love with an Indian master famously fond of women. And of course he was due to follow the normal route of study, marriage, family and so on.
But as most of us reading this thoroughly entertaining book will have experienced, at a certain point normal becomes untenable, so we kick the traces and head on out into the world to find a different way of being.
Michael Mogul’s journey lead him to the beaches of Goa where he came across a small tract by someone with an unpronounceable name, and reading it changed his life. He travelled up to Bombay, and then to Poona – I’m talking about 1973 here, before the de-anglicizing of many British place names – and the transformation of would-be lawyer, sometime barman and genuine, all-American boy into a wildly-bearded man in orange cotton pants, willing to admit he knows nothing whilst looking for the answer to everything, makes fascinating reading.
Upon his return, penniless, to America, his entrepreneurial skills to the fore, he rapidly founded Geetam, an Osho centre in California which just as rapidly became extremely popular. In his light, anecdotal style he relates the story of finding and securing the property. People moved in and let it all hang out. A visit from the local cops, and from his sister, not to mention a veiled reprimand from Laxmi, Osho’s secretary at that time, put paid to that particular freedom, and clothes were worn once more.
Krishna Prem, or KP (like the English nuts, as he describes it) sat in front of Osho. They chatted. Osho sent him out into the world, and to date he spends half his time in Pune, and the other half in Amsterdam, with short trips to the States in between. He has been through the mill, been rich, been poor, cried and laughed and is meditating right now.
This book is his love song in gratitude to the master.
Review by Anand Chetna
Krishna Prem (aka KP) grew up in the USA where he graduated from Boston University. He came to Mumbai in 1973 at the age of 29 where he met Osho and took sannyas. He was part of all the communes founded by Osho and is a steady visitor of the Meditation Resort in Pune. Krishna Prem is the author of the book, Gee You Are You, The Book. geeyouareyou.com
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