Lokesh writes:

Faith is to believe what you do not see; the reward of this faith is to see what you believe.”  (St. Augustine of Hippo)

If you have a belief and you come against an experience which the belief says is not possible, or the experience is such that you have to drop the belief, what are you going to choose — the belief or the experience? The tendency of the mind is to choose the belief, to forget about the experience. That’s how you have been missing many opportunities when God has knocked at your door.”  (OSHO)

Osho was never big on belief. He wasn’t a believer and was much more in favour of an existential approach to life. And yet, conversely, he was surrounded by believers who believed in him. I believed that my life would evolve and move in a positive direction just by being near him. In retrospect, I suppose that my life did develop due to Osho’s influence and today, I wonder how much my belief in him had to do with that. Belief is a powerful force.

What brought this to mind was someone on SN posting a request for one of those little wooden boxes with Osho’s nail and hair clippings that used to be given as gifts at darshan. I remember how thrilled I was to receive my little round box and how I had a pouch made so I could wear it around my neck, which I did for years along with my mala. I can recall how I felt that the little box emanated a vibration that affected my heart chakra, over which it hung.

The years passed, and I can no longer remember what became of my darshan box, which does not bother me in the slightest because I now view it as a bit of cosmic nonsense I once believed in, but experience has shown me that I no longer need things like that in my life. I am no longer a believer.

Osho often played with the power of belief; often as not, most sannyasins went for it. A good example was when Osho began to use a penlight torch to shine on sannyasins’ energy centres at darshan. One would leave darshan, meet friends outside and be asked if you got the torch treatment. If you did, you were viewed as having been blessed, even though it was pure hokum.

Or how about holding your locket and being in direct contact with Osho? I believed that to be true until one day, I was in an ICU fighting for my life and held my locket and realised it was bullshit. It was a significant moment in my life because that is when I began to wake up from the Osho dream. Of course, this had nothing to do with Osho and everything to do with me. Gurus are the perfect screens to project our fantasies on. I am not sentimental about those times and rarely think about them. I have noticed that some sannyasins imagine there is something spiritual about sentimentality. There isn’t.

I sometimes wonder about some of my profound experiences during the several years I spent in Poona One. Twice I encountered Osho when he was out of his human body, in the sense that he was definitely there, but I could not actually see him. Not only that, I was with other sannyasins, and they also witnessed this extraordinary phenomenon, and the next day Osho hinted at it in his morning discourse.

And that was the thing about Osho. Although there was a lot of theatrics in his performance, he produced an incredible vibe of peace, love, awareness and enlightenment, and nobody can explain how he did that. It was unbelievable. If you experienced that vibe, you can never forget it. I’m grateful for that. So, in the end, experience won out over belief.

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  1. satchit says:

    There are often stories that the Master-disciple relation is like a passage.

    Something like “If you meet the Buddha on your way, kill him immediately!”

    So maybe belief helps one to stay in the relation and doubt helps one to get rid of the relation.

    • swamishanti says:

      Apparently, the 8th Khangser Rinpoche asked for one of Osho’s malas whilst meeting visiting Osho sannyasins recently.
      Tenzin Tsultrim Palden.

      At the age of 5 he was recognized as the reincarnation of the 7th Khangser Rinpoche who had been one of the three high lamas responsible for locating the 14th reincarnation of HH the Dalai Lama.

      Khangser Rinpoche has been appointed as the Lama Umze Vice Abbot of Gyuto Tantric Monastery.
Rinpoche is the supreme head of the Gelug lineage (Yellow Hat school), which is the largest school in Tibetan Buddhism System.

      Apparently, he reads Osho’s books:

  2. Lokesh says:

    If I met the Buddha on the way, I would ask him if I could make him a cup of tea. Everyone’s approach is different.

    Killing the Buddha means killing our conceptualizations, killing the belief that we understand it all.

    This might seem counterintuitive; after all, what’s left if we let go of our knowledge? Total exposure. It consists of the openness of all experiences, the certainty of uncertainty, the security of insecurity, and the comfort in vulnerability. It’s being courageously present, whatever that means, with things just as they are. We are each our own teacher and simultaneously each our own teaching.

    • swamishanti says:

      Lokesh: “I am not sentimental about those times and rarely think about them.”

      But you still hang onto Osho, haven`t managed to let go of him.

      Even with very limited experience of him.

      • swamishanti says:

        I didn’t celebrate Guru Purnima but I appreciate Urdu ghazals.

        “Mere hamdam, Mere dost
        Mere sathi, Mere geet
        Mere hamsafar, Mere meet
        My heart, My friend (in Urdu)
        My companion, My song
        My fellow travellers, My friend.” (in Hindi)

        Ma Amrit Priya, Ma Amrit Sadhana and others sang this song after Osho’s last but one discourse, on 10th April 1989.

        Abheeru recently recorded a version of this song, by friends in Brazil, for Guru Purnima, for Osho and his enlightened bodyguard Vasant Swaha:

      • satyadeva says:

        Lokesh is more than capable of answering for himself but I feel moved to mention one or two things here.

        Shanti, do you really think that, despite missing the Ranch and Pune Two, Lokesh had “very limited experience” of Osho, having spent 7 years in Pune One, including many one-to-one darshans where he received first-hand intimate advice from the Master?

        Your remark seems rather odd and I suspect you have a need to hold such a belief in order not to be faced with having to relinquish feelings of ‘superiority’, of being, in contrast, a ‘true disciple’, without which your self-appointed raison d’etre for being here might tend to crumble at its foundations.

        However ‘selfless’ you might believe is your motivation for taking a stand against what you perceive to be anti-Osho sentiment at SN, a sort of ‘corruption’ of how Sannyas and Osho should be presented, such remarks do tend to give the egoic game away, although I somehow doubt that you’re willing to acknowledge this.

  3. Lokesh says:

    Hawkwind and Shyam Singha are two things Shanti seems to want to draw attention to. Apart from the obvious, the band and the doctor were both based in London. They do share something else in common. They both underwent a process of demystification.

    Hawkwind were an early seventies underground band. I saw them perform at least a couple of dozen times. It was a bit like, let’s drop some acid and go and see Hawkwind. I liked them. Hawkwind were ahead of their time, so appeared better than they actually were. They were not brilliant musicians. Mind you, that was in an era when I saw Cream, Pink Floyd, B B King etc., in small clubs, so the competition was pretty stiff.

    Shyam Singha was a doctor who ran a small sannyasin scene down on central London’s Bell Street, if I remember correctly. Shyam Singha was an intelligent and highly eccentric man who could be intense to be around. He was an early sannyasin and revelled in the mystic vibe that came with that in the early days. I have met several people like him along the way. Some are still trying it on, although with the passage of time that is not so easy to do. People are better informed today and therefore recognize the mystic mud for what it is.

    Back in London from Poona during the seventies, I had a couple of acupuncture sessions with Doctor Singha, who relieved me of my physical ailment. I’d grown up a bit by then and saw his game for what it was, but that didn’t matter because he was, at heart, a good guy. In my eyes, he’d gone from being a sophisticated rebel to another fish in the tank. He was ahead of his time, but time caught up with him and dissolved his cloak of mysticism. Osho also caught up with him, going so far as to describe him as a quack, deceptive and a man who exploited sannyasins.

    Isn’t that how life goes? One decade’s cutting-edge, radical, breakthrough, front line, is the next decade’s old hat, clichéd, been there done that. It is rare for something more universal and eternal to raise its head. But it does happen.

    • swamishanti says:

      I have no real interest in drawing attention to Hawkwind or Shyam Singha, even if I occasionally posted some of their videos which I appreciated and may be of interest to some englishmen and women from a sannyas background in the last century. I heard recently that the lead singer of Hawkwind, Nik Turner, passed away last year, and apparently one of the bands guitarists died this year.

      I wouldn’t say that they weren’t musically talented, they are the kind of particular experimental, psychedelic hard progressive space rock sound, with a spiritual side, blasting away into the night that fits the environment and ambience of one of the old UK free festivals.

      I occasionally like to listen to pieces of Hawkwind, although I am not familiar with the majority of their catalogue.
      Personally I much prefer the Ozric Tentacles, another psychedelic space prog rock band, which also incorporates elements of electronica, ambient, and dub, that was founded after a conversation around a fire and a jam , which attracted a crowd of people, at Stonehenge in 1983 , they are still going today, inspired by the old improvisational psychedelic free festival bands such as Hawkwind, Gong, Here and Now, Thandoy, Karmakanix etc, but are almost purely instrumental. They are not improvisational, but often similar in style and vibe to some of those old bands.

      An offshoot of the Ozrics were the techno outfit Eat Static. I have their first two cd’s somewhere.

      As far as Shyam Singha goes, I remember him as a warm man who cooked excellent Indian food which included meat dishes where sannyasins gathered for free lunches in the tunnels which were part of his underground London centre, and held large parties for his birthdays at the Suryodaya centre in Suffolk, where there would be tables of food on the lawn and bottles of champagne in buckets of ice and Shyam would end up at the end of the night, smashed, singing incomprehensibly on the stage along with the band. He was a very talented practitioner of several treatments: acupuncture, chiropractic, massage, nutrition and diets, and a naturopath who knew his stuff and successfully treated celebrities, including Princess Margaret. He sometimes told a few talk stories, but certainly no quack.

      Yes, Osho did say those things about him at the Ranch but that would have been based just on one or two stories he had heard from sannyasins who perhaps felt exploited.

      Osho didn’t know about every detail.

      • swamishanti says:

        And remembering Shyam Singha and the psychedelic festival bands here’s one of Pragito’s later bands, ‘House of Thandoy’, from a set at the Cosmic Puffin festival in 2009. Playing together a with Gong’s Mike Howlett on bass:

        • swamishanti says:

          A rare piece of live psychedelic jamming captured here from Thandoy/Karmakanix, one of the old festival bands, with Pragito playing guitar and Subs on bass, Rob Bougie from Here and Now and Thandoy on drums and Maz from Zorch on synths and keyboards at the last Peoples Free Festival at Stonehenge festival in 1984:


          A few minutes of Thandoy captured at Stonehenge festival 1980:

        • swamishanti says:

          These space rockers move in similar circles. Here’s the same drummer Stephen Cassidy from the ‘House of Thandoy’, playing as part of ‘Dream Machine’, alongside ‘Jumping John’ well known as the flutist from the Ozric Tentacles, at Eastern Haze 2007:

          And former members of Here & Now, Karmakanix and Ozrics/Eat Static also jammed together in ‘Sentient’ :

          • swamishanti says:

            And here’s some Ayurveda by the Ozrics.



            And the award for the album of the week goes to:

            ‘PUNGENT EFFULGENT` by the Ozric Tentacles (1989). Their first proper album release, on vinyl and cd at least. Some very special albums follow that one, ‘ERPLAND’, ‘STRANGEITUDE’ and ‘ARBORESCENCE’ are both mindblowing, ‘LIVE UNDERSLUNKY’ is my favourite out of the live ones and contains a good mix of material.

            I would recommend listening to ‘LIVE UNDERSLUNKY’ at least once in a lifetime.

            I had four of their albums on tape and a couple of records, in the naughty nineties.

            Osho said something like, ‘music is perfect when the listener reaches the same state as the musician who created it’.

            There are also some superb homemade tapes of older Ozric material, which can now be found on cd and online.

            The first homemade Ozric tape I heard was ‘Tantric Obstacles’, which a couple of professional jugglers working together were using as background music for their most incredible and impressive performance, juggling an impossible amount of flourescant glowing balls as well as clubs and hoops… working together as only very skilled jugglers can..under uv lights which took place in a barn on a farm, at the end of a juggling weekend camp. I had learnt how to juggle five balls at the same time there.

  4. Lokesh says:

    Osho knew Shyam Singha well enough to know that he did not like him. It is all water down the Ganges now, but if you want to read more, you can follow this link:

    That wasn’t really my point. My point is in the concluding paragraph. Not that it makes any difference to anything.

    • swamishanti says:

      I know, I have read it. But it was also a well placed hit from Osho. I wouldn’t go so far as to say “he didn’t like him.”
      If you get to the end of his response to that question you find:

      “Just now his telegram has come as he heard about Sheela that, “Can I come and I can help the medical centre if there is any need?” I have told him, “No, and forever no, because medical centre is a part — you will simply start treating me that I don’t want. I’m tired of your treatment.” So it was simply, he was a harassment to me. So nobody else has kicked him; I myself have kicked him.

      And if he wants to come back, he has to learn, because my sannyasins are taking every care, that’s why for four years I have not had a single attack. Every sannyasin is careful about perfume, cigarettes, they come to see me then they take bath that no smell is there, that they are not perspiring — that’s how they have been keeping me in health — otherwise just a slight smoke, dust, perfume, and I am in a danger.

      So Shyam Singha is, to me, almost like a disease: I don’t want him. You can tell him.

      Q:* YES.

      A:* Yes. He is…I love him, he is always welcome if he behaves.”

      Shyam used to insist on massaging Osho’s feet and wanted to give him acupressure for his allergies, and was an excellent practitioner of what we now call ‘alternative medicine’, which is really older forms of medicine. Osho didn’t appreciate that treatment for himself, although he had previously sent sannyasins to Shyam’s place in London.

      Osho wasn’t really into alternative medicine, he rated allopathic medicine highly, which is why he always wanted his own doctors’ approaches. Although he did receive some bodywork, massage and herbal treatments in Pune Two.

      • Lokesh says:

        Perfectly correct, Shanti, due to your penetrating insights into all matters concerning Osho. In saying, “I wouldn’t go so far as to say “he didn’t like him”" you demonstrate, once again, your profound understanding of the master of masters’ mysterious ways.

        Osho, an embodiment of perfect compassion, going by your worldview, called Shyam Singha a quack, a liar and a person who deceived sannyasins, almost like a disease, claimed he didn’t wash, stank of perfume and personally had the pseudo doctor kicked out of the ashram, but this was all a device for Shyam’s awakening and had nothing whatsoever to do with viewing the man as “a pain in the neck” (Osho’s words), but was rather “a well-placed hit”, which had, in your esteemed opinion, something to do with Shyam Singha being a practitioner of alternative medicine, which you deem fit to inform us “is really older forms of medicine.”

        Thanks for sharing that illuminating snippet of information. And thank you also for shedding light on days long gone. Were it not for you, I, like many others, would have believed that Osho did not like Shyam Singha. Now we know the truth. Osho loved Shyam Singha!

        Shanti, you are a beacon of light, cutting through the darkness of ignorance like a lightning bolt. Your wisdom knows no bounds. You are the supreme manifestation of that which Osho supported with unreserved enthusiasm…being a joke unto oneself.

  5. satchit says:

    The mind is the devil. You give too much power to your mind. The mind is evil. You even try to convince others that they don’t get it.

    • Lokesh says:

      Satchit declares, “You even try to convince others that they don’t get it.”
      Get what?

      • satchit says:

        Shanti declares that he has a blissful connection to Osho.

        And what are you doing?
        You try to convince him that this is not possible and that there is something wrong with him.

        As if your way, having an Osho-phase and then saying
        bye-bye to him, would be the only way.

        • Lokesh says:

          Satchit, you are entitled to your opinions and you are free to express them how you wish. Just don’t ask me to take you seriously, for that is something I find impossible to do.

          • satchit says:

            Certainly I am free to express my opinions, Lokesh.
            Strange that you delete your comments.

            My opinion, in this way SN will not have much future.

            Well, Satchit, you’re allowed to comment on the article instead of waiting to comment on others’ comments, and then blaming others for not commenting!

            • satchit says:

              Seems you did get it, MOD.
              He deleted already his comment on the article. I am bored of this game.

              Everyone has the right to delete what they’ve posted, Satchit. Why not make a comment on the article yourself, or are you solely interested in others’ comments?

              • satchit says:

                There is a difference: he can delete it by himself, we have to beg the MOD to delete it. Surely I can make a comment.

                Why not you too or one of the hundreds who post here?

                No need to exaggerate, Satchit. You don’t “have to beg”. As the Lord said, just ask and thou shalt receive. As for “the hundreds who post here” – oh, the irony!

                By the way, I wrote the current article so it’s more than premature to expect me to comment on it (if that’s what your last sentence suggests?)!

  6. Lokesh says:

    The devil? Are you living in the Middle Ages?

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