Chaitanya Keerti writes about Tathagat and Osho.
Osho came back to India from the world tour in 1986 and whichever country he had traveled to was unwilling to let Osho stay there, except Uruguay, where Osho could stay for barely three months.
On March 19, 1986 Osho traveled to Uruguay. On May 14, the government scheduled a press conference to announce that Osho will be granted permanent residence. Uruguay’s President Sanguinetti later confirmed that he received a telephone call from Washington, D.C. the night before. He was told that if Osho was allowed to stay, the six billion dollar debt Uruguay owed to the U.S. would be due immediately – and no further loans would be granted. Osho was ordered to leave Uruguay on June 18.
Later, a two-week visa was arranged for Jamaica, but on arrival in Kingston the police gave 12 hours to leave. Osho returned to Bombay, India, on July 30, 1986, and many of his Western disciples also started coming to India.
There was not enough space in Mumbai, where thousands of disciples could meditate with him, so on January 4, 1987, 4 am, he returned to the ashram in Pune. Around 8 am policemen served an Order to leave, while he was in bed.
In one of the discourses – The Messiah, on Khalil Gibran’s Prophet – Osho says: “I reached here at four o’clock in the night, and within three hours the police were here. I was asleep. As I opened my eyes, I saw two policemen in my bedroom. I said, I never see dreams, particularly nightmares. How have these dodos managed to come inside? I asked. Do you have any search warrant? They didn’t have – ‘Then how have you entered my private bedroom?’ They said, ‘We have to serve a notice on you.’
“Sometimes one wonders whether we use words in our sleep. Is this the way to serve a notice? Is this the way to be a servant of the people? All these are servants of the people; we pay them. They should behave like servants… but they behave like masters. I said, ‘I have not committed any crime. I have just slept for three hours, is it a crime?’ One of them said,’“You are a controversial person and the police commissioner feels your presence may provoke violence in the city.’ ….And on the notice… I said, ‘Read it. What is my crime?’
“My crime is that I am controversial. But can you tell me – has there ever been a man of any intelligence who was not controversial? To be controversial is not a crime. In fact, the whole evolution of human consciousness depends on controversial people: Socrates, Jesus, Gautam Buddha, Mahavira, Bodhidharma, Zarathustra.”
Under the influence of the American Government, the Indian Government also had become hostile to Osho. And the harassment from the Govt. agencies was at its peak. Something had to be done to deal with this situation of daily harassment.
Swami Anand Tathagat who had joined the Rajneesh Ashram a few years earlier, prior to Osho’s arrival in Pune, and had been helping Swami Anand Swabhav, Osho’s Ambassador for India, was the real man of the moment. Swami Anand Swabhav suggested his name to Osho. Trust in Existence and Existence provides the right person at the right moment.
Swami Tathagat was a very practical person and a courageous person, a man with guts. He had a vast experience of Indian politics since the time of Sanjay Gandhi. There was a certain maturity of being in the thick of politics and remaining above it or maintaining distance to it also. He had been a student of J. Krishnamurti’s school at Rajghat in Varanasi. He had lived in the energy field of an enlightened master.
The last century was really a unique century that was blessed by the presence of two greatest enlightened masters, J. Krishnamurti and Osho, such masters happen only after 2500 years; Tirthankar Mahavir and Gautam Buddha had happened 2500 years ago. J. Krishnamurti created an atmosphere of gently stirring and stimulating the minds of the world intelligentsia and traveled extensively in various countries and did that for seventy years. Osho did not have so much time. But Osho was totally a different master; as Shri Dileep Padgaonkar wrote: “He sought to disturb, shock and provoke to goad the individual to discover the worth of stillness. Osho was an agent provocateur who wanted to subvert conventional modes of thought and feeling because these, in his eyes, bred complacency and smugness.”
Osho envisioned a New Man for this New Age. He says: “If Einstein had also been a Buddha, there would have been atomic energy but no atom bombs, and atomic energy would have become a blessing – the greatest blessing ever. The earth would have become a paradise. But Albert Einstein is not a Buddha; unfortunately, he knows nothing of meditation – a great mind, but the master is missing; a great mechanism, a great airplane without the pilot. …I would like you to be enriched by Newton, Edison, Eddington, Rutherford, Einstein; and I would like you also to be enriched by Buddha, Krishna, Christ, Mohammed, so that you can become rich in both the dimensions – the outer and the inner.”
And, Osho was the most misunderstood master ever. He was hated and furiously opposed by all politicians around the world and the politicians of this so-called spiritual nation. But there were some intelligent and sensitive people in this country who understood him and declared themselves as Friends of Osho. These were prominent poets and top artists from various fields – Amrita Pritam, Neeraj, and so many other poets; Pt. Hari Prasad Chaurasia, Ustad Zakir Hussain, Pt. Shiv Kumar Sharma and many many more artists of such caliber. But the politicians are real troublemakers. Then there are the crafty priests from the organized religions who are hypocrites.
Enlightened masters like Osho are a danger to such people: “I condemn the organized religions in the same way I condemn the politicians – they are nothing but politics. So when I said to you that religious people should be respected, honored – the politicians should go to them for advice – I was not talking about organized religions; I was talking only about religious individuals. And a religious individual is neither Hindu nor Christian nor Mohammedan. How can he be? – God himself is not Hindu, not Mohammedan, not Christian. And the man who knows something of the divine becomes colored with his divinity, becomes fragrant with godliness.“
There were always some court cases against Osho because these false cases were manufactured by the priests and politicians (Osho calls them The Mafia of the Soul ) and Swami Tathagat proved to be the right person to deal with these cases. Osho declared him as the commune in-charge and entrusted him with this task.
Tathagat was totally dedicated to the Master as he himself said – I am Osho’s Hanumaan. His job was his meditation, as it required total dedication and no escape, no time to sit in meditation, except to be in the presence of the Master. Osho did acknowledge it in one of the discourses: “Look at Tathagat! I will not allow him to become enlightened. Once he becomes enlightened, who is going to run to the courts, to the police? I have given him the name Tathagat – it means the buddha. …Be patient and be at ease. When the time is ripe, when I see that now there is no need to run to any court, to the police…. I have given you the name to indicate that if you are patient enough you will become a buddha. But right now, you are in charge of the commune. “( Yakusan: Straight to the Point of Enlightenment, Ch 2)
Swami Anand Tathagat left his body meditatively, peacefully and cheerfully – with full acceptance and gratitude. The name Tathagat means Thus Came Thus Gone – the suchness of Tathata! Acceptance of life and death.
There are celebrations happening at Osho centers in India and all around the world, and thousands of Osho lovers are acknowledging his unique contribution to Osho’s multi-dimensional vision and work – with heartfelt gratitude. I had the rare pleasure of working with this simple and intimate friend for many decades.