Punya met Indivar and Chaya last year when they were being trained by Leela to become Senior Trainers themselves. Now they have given their first training in their hometown Sedona. Indivar answers a few questions.
The Mystic Rose is a 21-day Meditative Therapy, one of the last meditations Osho has left for us. It combines meditation and therapy. (Week 1 laughing; week 2 crying; week 3 sitting silently with awareness – three hours each morning.)
This summer you facilitated your first Mystic Rose Training. How was it for you?
Thinking about what to present in the training brought surprising insights to me. For instance I realized that the most important element was to understand Osho’s approach to meditation; the complex, stressed-out modern man needs active meditations, which release energy first! In the Mystic Rose this happens through laughing and crying; then the natural, pre-existing state of watchfulness and meditation is available to us – no further technique is needed. Yet, without a technique to clear the way, it would not happen.
Although I have been a sannyasin for 41 years, I often forget to do something active before I sit. Each time I do the Mystic Rose I am grateful to be reminded of how essential and beneficial the active phase is. So, in the training we put a lot of emphasis into this aspect.
Another thing which became clear to me: meditation has to be enjoyable, not a duty or a burden.
Preparing for the training I was also reminded that meditation processes reveal many unpleasant and painful things. We have to learn to be with, and move through them.
Also, that Osho is a radical master. His guidance and discourses are radical in that they challenge everything we hold on to, from the past or future. This three-week group is also a radically transformative process. During the group we showed videos where Osho talks about the Mystic Rose, about religion, our attachments to petty things. They were essential for the training. I never tire of hearing him, because my mind leans heavily towards security and attachments, so it helps me to see this.
Another crucial aspect is to understand what it entails to be a facilitator of a meditative therapy group. The facilitator gives the instructions, sets the tone, and then participates in the process with everyone in the group. There is no talking during it. The facilitator watches over the room to make sure everything unfolds smoothly. If someone needs help, it is given by laughing or crying together, not by any verbal advice. This is very different from therapy groups. It largely avoids a lot of projections and complications that can arise from them.
Osho called this group a Meditative Therapy; it is a combination of meditation and therapy. In the Mystic Rose, in addition to being an active meditation that enables very deep silent sitting in the last week, meditation also happens during laughing – when it is total; the mind stops and there is a vast free empty space. It also stops with deep crying, again leaving an open empty space. The process is a pure energy blast, so when laughing or crying is blocked and one keeps on digging deeper to another layer of laughing or crying, these blocks are dissolved. We might become aware of the conditionings that are causing them – and that’s all that’s needed. This movement of energy and awareness of the blocks is the therapy aspect of the group.
Did you enjoy teaching the new facilitators?
Participating in and facilitating the group in the morning, then leading the training in the afternoons enabled us to be playful and natural in our presentation and sharings. It made the training a very intimate and enjoyable time. The trainees had a chance to absorb and experience everything more deeply each day as they experimented with their own laughter, tears and silence.
Was it easy enough to get people together for such a long retreat? How could they free themselves from their other commitments?
Getting people for a three-week process is a big deal in today’s busy world. The advantage of this extended duration is that only totally committed people will sign up, which makes the process easier and deeper.
Was it difficult to find a venue for the workshop in Sedona? Did they offer a meditation hall, food and accommodation in one place?
To find a venue in Sedona, where we can be noisy, wild and free, was a challenge. We found a Yoga studio willing to accommodate our everyday morning schedule for two weeks, by cancelling some of their offerings (since it was during summer vacation time they were prepared to do that). Otherwise we couldn’t have had this noise-tolerant, beautiful room. For the silent sitting week we chose to rent a carpeted room, looking out onto a garden, in the former Osho Academy building.
Chaya helped the participants to find accommodation in friends’ homes or shared rentals which brought expenses down. Food is no problem here: there are many restaurants, grocery stores and health food stores in town. So, although our workshop was not residential, it had a retreat-like quality, in spite of us going about shopping for groceries, driving cars, bicycles or motorbikes, hiking and swimming in the red rocks.
What do you think about shorter forms like Three Treasures and Trinity, that last 9 days instead of 21?
About shorter versions like a 9-day group (Three Treasures, Trinity) or the meditation events we do (1/2 hour for each stage of laughter, tears and silence), I think these are very good refreshers for old-timers and give a chance for new people to get a taste, which may inspire them to do the full process. However, from our observations, they are not a substitute for the three-week Mystic Rose.
That is because about day four or five, a breakthrough occurs for almost everyone, like a dam breaking – opening to a new and deeper level. This happens both for new participants and for those who have done the group many times before. This is why people do the group repeatedly. There is a precision in the timing Osho chose for his meditations. In fact, Osho suggested to Leela that it is good to do the Mystic Rose once a year to keep the gates open.
Anything else you would like to add?
As may be apparent, I am a great enthusiast of all Osho’s Meditative Therapies (there is also No Mind: gibberish followed by sitting, and Born Again: becoming a child again followed by sitting – each one week), which we also facilitate.
I wish everyone may have the good fortune to experience for themselves one of these ingenious gifts Osho has left for us.
Indivar and Chaya will conduct a Mystic Rose group and facilitator training in upstate New York (26 April – 16 May 2020) organized by Padma New York, and are planning one for December 2020 in Tel Aviv with Lani. They are also offering a No Mind group and training in Sedona in October 2019.