Osho TLV Centre: Now Open!

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Exciting news: the Osho TLV Meditation Centre in Tel Aviv, Israel, opened end of last month with a big celebration and champagne. (Lani talked to Punya via WhatsApp)

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Two months ago, we had reported of an Osho Centre in Tel Aviv in the making. It was still in the planning stages, though a property had already been spotted, located on the 9th floor of a high-rise building in the central district of Tel-Aviv.

Several yearly membership cards had already been paid for, enough to give the team the courage to take on the yearly leasing contract and start with the renovation work, needed to turn the space into what is now Osho TLV; a big hall for meditation and groups, a few session rooms, office, kitchen and reception.

Only three weeks later, on 21 June 2019, the centre was opened with a well-attended celebration .

Over the weeks Lani had sent me updates – first a personal video of the demolition and renovation work that had begun as soon as the contract was signed, then shortly afterwards photos of the elegantly furnished place, and then a video of the opening celebration. Replying to my comment of being amazed at the speed everything had come together and the beauty of the place, she said, “The Israelis make things happen!”

“The opening celebration party was fantastic! About 200 people came, from all over Israel. The Centre opened at 6:00 pm with refreshments and snacks, followed by an Osho Evening Meeting which was fully packed or as they say, a full house; afterwards Tarika welcomed all and we toasted with a glass of champagne. We ended the evening with a dance party lasting until midnight. It is such a thrill to see that our dream has come to fruition. To see that It is happening!” Lani exclaimed.

Tarika has shared her vision in June 2017 in a post on Facebook. This is how it reads:

Last January, when I was with Chaitanyo, my beloved, at the Osho International Meditation Resort in Pune, as Osho’s Evening Meditation began, I had the insight that we, the sannyasins and those who love meditation and that live in the spirit of Osho, need to have a home. We need one place which will regularly hold Osho’s meditations, discourses, workshops, trainings and sessions, with the best facilitators from Israel and around the world, an official centre that will, on a regular basis, maintain contact with the Osho Resort.

We went for it. We did all we had to do to get the certificate for an official Osho centre, and then it was in our hands. The next step was to find a physical home for us. So, here’s my prayer, my longing… I’ll be grateful if you help me make my dream come true in any way you find that suits you.

I asked existence to find a space to rent, in Tel Aviv, a suitable, spacious, pleasant and bright space, where we can be noisy without disturbing anyone, close to public transportation and train stations with plenty of parking, in a pleasant area near restaurants, cafes, parks and all that a city can offer nearby.

Thank you, thank you, and thank you again. Osho! Osho! Osho!

After the initial hesitation, the organizers of Osho TLV now feel confident that the centre will cover its running expenses, not only with the membership cards (they also received donations from abroad and a one-time contribution of 10,000 shekels {$ 3,000} to help with the renovation) but also with the daily meditation tickets with which they initially had not calculated. It turns out that these daily tickets will constitute a big chunk towards the running of the centre. There are many people who come for a one-time visit to participate in meditations.

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The program can be seen on the website, but here is the main structure of daily events:

7 am – Dynamic Meditation
9 am – on some days a meditation or yoga
12 noon – Lunch-time meditation that changes every day
5 pm – Kundalini Meditation (Thursdays at 7 pm)
7 pm – Evening Meeting (except on Thursdays)
9 pm – evening programme that also changes every day

Sugandho writes, “The other night we had a dance party with about 25 people. AUM meditation is scheduled on a regular basis and many other interesting meditations and social events are included in the weekly plan. As there is always someone from our staff present from morning till night, people have also started dropping in during the day for just a visit, hanging out in the kitchen, reading a book by Osho in the library. It’s a place where they feel welcomed and at home. Exactly what we wanted – a home!”

Osho TLV has already heard from outside groups, e.g. a yoga school, that they would be interested in renting the meditation room for some of their classes and events – there is an amazing view from the 9th floor! Reason why there is already talk about expanding and renting the rest of the floor… Who knows?

Sugandho added, “Osho TLV is standing on solid ground with many experienced senior sannyasins and meditators. At the same time we are reaching out to the young ones living in Tel Aviv. The city is buzzing with the energy of young people. To bring them in contact with meditation and awareness, while supporting their natural need and interest to live their Zorba energy, is one of our dreams. The content team will shortly release a juicy program with activities specially conceived for them.”

Lani couldn’t contain the avalanche of appreciative words about the team that is running the activities. “All facilitators are connected via a WhatsApp group. In case someone can’t make it for a meditation they were scheduled to run, they can ask via their phone if somebody can replace them. It works perfectly, and there is always someone ready to jump in. After the meditation is over participants can also comment – for example, ‘Only one person came but there was so much energy.’ It’s a beautiful way to stay connected and I feel this big YES from each one of us.”

Everybody in the team has been trained as a Meditation Facilitator either at the Meditation Resort in Pune or in one of the regular trainings in Israel – just recently there has been a training in Israel run by Sudheer.

I thought it would be nice to get to know if not all facilitators then at least the names of the core group. This is what Lani told me about each one:

Tarika is the initiator of the project. She is responsible for publicity, marketing, media, PR. She  facilities AUM meditations and offers sessions at the centre in hypnotherapy and NLP. She also facilitates NLP workshops and gives Family Constellation trainings together with Sakino. Her partner is Chaitanyo. who is part of the marketing and administration team.

Jivany is the manager and hands-on person. He takes care of everything that needs attention at the centre. He practically lives there, people say jokingly…

Iris liaised with the landlord and took care of the renovation contract. She’s the one who chose the beautiful furniture! Together with Jivany, takes care of the daily chores of the centre.

Mitra is the technical man; he prepares the videos for the evening discourses, the sound tracks for dancing and meditations, and oversees the events team. He is also the designer of the beautiful logo. Together with Pavaha they maintain the website, its translation, the schedule of events, and the Facebook page. The two are known as the internet team.

Sudas coordinates the meditation facilitators and is also part of the content team.

Shin takes care of legal and financial issues. He found the location and supervised the refurnishing together with his wife Iris.

Gitama (one of the three so-called oldies), when not travelling the world offering her therapy workshops, oversees the content offered by Osho TLV, together with Udi, her partner. She has also reached out to therapists around the world interested in bringing their workshops toTel Aviv. Udi is taking care of correspondence, answering emails.

Kimaya is a meditation facilitator and the one to go to if anyone wants to become a volunteer; she is also part of the events team.

Sugandho (second oldie) facilitates workshops, meditation events and shares her experience from living and working in Osho’s communes for many years. She is also part of the content team.

And finally, Lani (third oldie) is involved in the content of what is being offered at the centre and is part of the meditation facilitators group. She intends to soon offer welcome days and orientation about Osho to new people, answering questions and talking to the media. She helped decorate the centre and will soon exhibit one of her mandalas there.

“We have such an amazing and devoted team in this Buddhafield,” exclaimed Lani at the end of our call.

Amazing indeed!

Punya

Punya is the founder of Osho News, author of many interviews and of her memoir On the Edge.

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