Commune and Communism….

Some Osho Extracts about Communes

 Real socialism is not a revolution in the society, it is not social: it is the revolution in the individual consciousness.

If many people who are going through an inner revolution live together, then there is bound to be a new quality. You can call it socialism; the better word will be ‘communism’, out of ‘commune’. Only a commune can have communism, but a commune exists only once in a while. When Buddha was alive a commune grew around him; he called it sangha, another name for commune. The meaning of sangha is: where the initiates have dropped their egos and are no more functioning like islands but have become one with each other, where a communion is happening. Communication is between the heads; communion is between the hearts.

Whenever so many hearts open, become flowers, a great fragrance is released. That fragrance surrounds a Buddha, you can call it a Buddhafield. The energy is totally different: there is no politics involved in it. […]

If Buddha is there, the commune is bound to happen; it cannot be prevented. It is inevitable. The real seekers will start moving towards the Buddha from the farthest corners of the world. It is just like when a fragrant flower opens, bees start queuing from faraway places. Suddenly the fragrance becomes a magnetic pull — but only for the bees, not for everybody. The dogs will pass by the flower without ever looking at the flower; it does not exist for them, they are not sensitive towards it.

The Buddha exists only for those who have the sensitivity, the perception, the availability, the openness, the search. Many came across Buddha and missed him. Millions of people encountered him, but could not recognize him. To them he was just another learned man, just another saint. And India has always been full of saints. There was nothing special for them in him. They listened to him, they gathered a little bit of knowledge from him and went on their way.

But those who had the sensibility, who had the heart which can dance with this fragile energy of a Buddha, this delicate perfume, were lost, completely lost and dissolved, merged. Out of these merged individuals the commune arises, the Buddhafield, the sangha. […]

In a commune of a Buddha everyone has individuality, nobody has any personality. Nobody is egoistic, but everybody has his uniqueness; he contributes to the commune in his own unique way.

And everybody is respected for whatsoever he is doing; there is immense respect for the individual. […]

There are poets, painters — famous, well-known — authors who have published much, and they may be making shoes or just working in the carpentry or doing some manual work in the garden, because one thing is absolutely clear: that your job makes no difference, your individuality is intact everywhere. Your job does not give you any higher position, it does not create any hierarchy.

Everybody else is doing in his own way, wholeheartedly. […]

If you surrender to a Buddha it is your decision, it is your freedom; you are not made to surrender.

And when many people surrender to a Buddha they are really surrendering to their own future, to their own ultimate potential. Buddha simply represents what can happen to them. He is just a reflection of their ultimate flowering.

We can create a chain around the world of such communes, and the whole world can be transformed into a Buddhafield. Then only there is a possibility of a communism arising out of love and arising from the highest sources, from the Everests — not a dictatorship of the proletariat, but a trust, a surrender to a Buddha. And out of that trust and surrender a totally new kind of communism can be given birth.

In that sense I am for communism — but communists will be very much against me because if my type of communism succeeds then their type of communism is bound to fail.

Osho, I Am That, Ch 15

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43 Responses to Commune and Communism….

  1. frank says:

    “Your job does not give you any higher position, it does not create any hierarchy.”

    Good idea. But what was, and still is, the reality?

    • Parmartha says:

      Yes, Frank,
      it is noticeable that these words were spoken in 1980!

      The ‘I Am That’ series of lectures are from October, 1980! – before any Osho commune of any size had been formed.

      The lectures were actually meant to be about the Upanishads, but Osho, like the punters on SN, often got off the point, though in his case he always returned eventually to it. (Of course the then Poona ‘Editors’ also nicked the title for this series from the then not so well known ‘I Am That’ book of Nisargadatta Maharaj, first published in 1973).

      It would seem to me the most important strand of thought here is the importance, or otherwise, of a ‘Buddhafield’. Osho’s communes certainly turned out poorly in terms of equality and all that sort of palava.

      My main discussion point would be around the Buddhafield. Certainly the ‘energy’, at least as I experienced it, was of a definite flavour, and raised one up. In mystical terms I even found it psychedelic at times.

      Maybe hermits in their burrows get along equally fast, and without living in something that in terms of personal freedom was fascistic.

      The argument against this has always been that hermits in their burrows never get confronted, and never begin to see beyond the tight boundaries of their egos of self importance, however genuine their seeking for truth.

      Below, Osho in 1980:

      • madhu dagmar frantzen says:

        Yes, so true, Parmartha,

        out of my experience, such can not be discussed.
        Either the flavour is there – or – not.
        Its a Love affair with the living Truth , very fragile.

        But maybe some discussion is possible of how such a flower is crushed, as it is quite very delicate a phenomenon.

        Btw – most of our discussions here go about the latter.

        You also say:
        ” Maybe hermits in their burrows get along equally fast, and without living in something that in terms of personal freedom was fascistic.
        The argument against this has always been that hermits in their burrows never get confronted, and never begin to see beyond the tight boundaries of their egos of self importance, however genuine their seeking for truth.”

        Inbetween ´hermits in their burrows´ and people surrendering their self appointed agendas up to a point , one could or can then call ´faschistic´, there are – even now – all colours of the rainbow, I suggest.

        And I don´t appreciate your stern dualistic version here , nor your contempt about those ( like me nowadays) who are living quite a ´hermit life.

        One never really knows from the outside , how that did unfold (happen) – and why – and maybe also what for, or how long such phases will endure and so on. ..

        What touches my heart deeply is the Love I feel in midst the words of that quote from the 80s.

        What I know, that the herewith described vision of a communion ( commune) is touching me up to today, as fresh as it was to the time, I joined the´dance´.



        • Parmartha says:

          Thanks for your post, Madhu. It moved me in parts.

          You got the wrong end of the stick about a supposed dualism. In fact, I was just inviting comment.

          One of my points would be subsequently, as it seems yours would be, that in a single life a person (and such a person could be me or you) can experience both hermiting and commune life, and the experience of both has been deeper because of the experience of the other.

        • kusum says:

          Why are you living life as a hermit (hermit life), Madhu?

    • kusum says:

      Osho speaks as ‘God’. In churches & temples also all sorts of people go. Whether one is CEO of company or a cleaner in the company. Rich & poor are treated the same in churches & temples. After all, we all are nothing but Energy!!

  2. shantam prem says:

    “We can create a chain around the world of such communes, and the whole world can be transformed into a Buddhafield.”

    Was it a teenager’s fantasy or a wise man visualising or a cowboy talking with his cows?

    • Lokesh says:

      Shantam asks, “Was it a teenager’s fantasy or a wise man visualising or a cowboy talking with his cows?” I find the question flippant.

      Osho says, “A commune exists only once in a while.” He was telling the truth.

      Today, some try to create communes, based on Osho’s ideas. There will be success and there will be failure in these social living experiments. What there will not be is a repeat of the great communes Osho created while alive. His physical presence was the glue that held those communes together.

      One can speak of Osho in the present tense until the holy cows come home but that is simply not enough to create a vast spiritual commune that functions well. Even while alive, Osho’s communes had their share of problems. Yet it was Osho’s love and the love and devotion directed towards him by his disciples that overcame the problems inherent in such grand social experiments.

      Speaking of which, Osho made the request that his disciples speak of him in the present tense while he was dying. His body was breaking down to the extent that he could not wait to leave it behind. Maybe sensible to see that needs to be taken into consideration when adopting the idea to speak of him in the present tense. Osho died like a true master, but his mind in practical terms was perhaps not working at the optimum. I am certain many will disagree.

      I recently suggested to my wife that it might be a good idea to form a small commune. She laughed and said, “Do you really want to set yourself up to deal with people’s problems and their head trips? Because that is part and parcel of running a commune.”

      I replied, “Well, Osho managed to deal with that sort of thing big-time and he still managed to keep his cool.”
      She laughed, “Yes, he did. But he was enlightened and you are not.”

      How come women are so often right?

      • dominic says:

        Not so fast, Lokesh, if you know women! Think about it!
        She’s clearly jealous and knows only too well, that if you started a commune, the laydeez would be throwing themselves at you. This way, she gets to keep your doubtless, prodigious ‘enlightenment’, all to herself. Smart woman….

        • madhu dagmar frantzen says:

          Uuuups, could it be that you even mean what you say here, Dominic (at 11.52 am)???

        • Lokesh says:

          Well, Dom, I suppose I would like to believe that was true.

          • dominic says:

            Make it so!
            Consider that the Buddha abandoned his wife and son to pursue enlightenment. You, on the other hand, have found freedom, in the market place, spinning the decks in the company of ibizan lotus eaters.
            You then relinquished the desire to become a world teacher, out of a tremendous gesture of accord and compassion, towards your beloved. Could there be a greater assurance of your liberation?
            I think not!

  3. dominic says:

    To my mind, the Buddhafield experiment showed up the dark underbelly behind the pretty picture of bees and flowers, Osho paints here. There is a thin line between a sangha that surrounds a living ‘Buddha’ and a totalitarian cult. Isn’t it funny that the greatest enemy to a utopian society, is often not the one it is rebelling against, but the enemy within?

    Personally, I don’t believe in the myth of a permanently enlightened, flawless Guru/Godman. Mystics may have great experiences and insight and be charismatic communicators, but remain human, all too human. Sadly, the elevated position both attracts and creates personality distortions and compensations around such a powerful role.

    A Buddha is also a product of his time and culture. Buddhism, as an example, is both liberating AND conformist. It both frees you and conditions you, as Sannyas did. The lack of free speech and free press is always a red flag, though this is typically interpreted as not being surrendered enough or ‘being in your head, man’.

    The universal law of ‘Anicca’ (impermanence) trumps all notions of buddhas and sanghas. Nothing lasts forever, as much as we’d like it too.

    However long the experience of being in a warm, supportive group lasts, there you are at the end of the day… back with yourself. The ‘hermit’ life can be tough, and the popular solution is to find a mate to take the edge off, but you’re always alone, just alone together sometimes!

    No doubt, we were originally meant to live intimate collectivist tribal lives, dancing under the stars, while taking entheogens. I’ll put it on my bucket list!

    • Parmartha says:

      As I have said, or tried to earlier, I can’t see why ways of life need to be mutually exclusive. And in my case this is not just a dream of the past. I often mix in groups and also spend time purposefully alone, and both in present time.

      For example, being in Queen’s Wood on a Saturday morning sitting with a dozen others, and finding a mutual lift in energy there. Not a totalitarian experience, or at all ‘dangerous’! Meditating alone in my room watching the stars in the window, not dangerous at all!

      Your third option, which you rightly seem cagey about, finding a meaningful other and living all the time with such a person is really dangerous..!!!! That just ensures sleep between birth and the big sleep itself. I suspect, Dominic, that you yourself are not much different from me in that?

      • dominic says:

        The enlightened pyramid scheme dictatorship, run by a guru figure, is a different beast to the more democratic circle ‘sangha’ or gathering. I thought you were reminiscing about the former memorabilia. In your case, it seems you can take the boy out of the commune, but you’ll never take the commune out of the boy.

        We are social animals and will always need each other, some more than others, and “to everything there is a season” (Ecclesiastes 3).

        “Really dangerous!!!!”? Some trauma? It’s called relationship P, not relationshit! What’s the problem, a ‘true buddha’ adapts to changing circumstances, and a buddhess might bring a little order, beauty and healthy meals to the table. They say married men live longer, that’s an extension for your shot at the big ‘O’, as well as some fun little O’s along the way. And isn’t it nice to have someone who pretends to understand you, when you say “Nobody understands me” ?

        Actually, the disincentive to have families and make babies in Sannyas was never a long-term solution. It’s a general western problem too, which has given ammunition to the mass invasion lobby, to bring in hordes of third world troublemakers, but I digress….

        • Parmartha says:

          I dare say if Gurdjieff were alive he would create a 21 long list of the type of idiot relationships there are, and whether they are disguised or not, just co-dependencies of different orders.

          That is not to say, as I think you want to argue that some are not happy…but at the end you go to rejoin your maker alone…

          Actually the “relationship” between Rumi and Shams of Tabirz could even be a leading example of co-dependency no. 15 – drunk with the talk of enlightenment together, which just has to be done sober alone.

    • madhu dagmar frantzen says:

      Around midnight, Dominic, and I love to read your late evening post (at 9.44 pm) touching so many areas of the issue of the thread topic, the comfortable and the uncomfortable.

      Good invitation to respond, will take some space-time to gather (more) ability to respond, as I am so tired just now.

      So many levels unfolding…Just now this:
      You say: “The universal law of ‘Anicca’ (impermanence) trumps all notions of buddhas and sanghas. Nothing lasts forever, as much as we’d like it too.”

      You are right and you are wrong, as I would say: No Awakened Being worth His or Her Salt, as one says, would deny the law of Impermanence, so ´trumping´ anything by anything is out of question.

      So far for the ´good-night´s prayer…

      Have a goodnight too.


  4. Kavita says:

    Thank you for sharing, D.

    The fact that I/we have had a chance to live in a Sangha would not have happened only if the so-called Buddhafield didn’t exist, & for that to exist a Buddha was needed. Then he (Buddha) told us about ‘Anicca’, which automatically nullifies the myth of a permanently enlightened, flawless Guru/Godman.

    • dominic says:

      You can never know for sure, who is a Buddha. There’s plenty of ‘fake news’ about and it’s always been a ‘post-truth feelz’ sub-culture – “I feel it’s true, therefore it’s true!”.
      Then there’s the power of positive spin. Just keep repeating shit, and eventually people will believe it, (see ‘The Idiot’s Guide To Starting A Religion’)

      Just saying “I’m a Buddha” and having enough chutzpah and talent to pull it off will probably do.
      I think the collective energy and aspiration of devotees, lovers, seekers, meditators and other assorted bums, is enough to draw people in, once the movement has grown in size.

      Anicca is a universal law, like gravity, a simple visit to the cemetery or burning grounds should suffice. We hardly need telling, but teachings do help to focus the mind!

      Yet impermanence is only half of the equation.
      The other half (Anatta), that guru/buddhas claim to solve and have under their belts (or dhotis) is what doesn’t die and what animates everything that does?
      The implied declaration is that they have permanently landed, while the rest of us are still circling up in the air, waiting for clearance and a runway!

      • Parmartha says:

        The main point is not the teacher/guru, or even God or Source, or what you will. The question for you, Dominic, is whether it is a potential of human beings, including yourself, to become free.

        Or to put it another way, to become just the egoless vehicle of God. That can be done alone, in fact maybe it can only be done alone, whatever help one may have had.

        But if one does not live in the faith that is possible, many retreat into politics, which I think you sometimes do.

      • satchit says:

        “Yet impermanence is only half of the equation.
        The other half (Anatta), that guru/buddhas claim to solve and have under their belts (or dhotis) is what doesn’t die and what animates everything that does?
        The implied declaration is that they have permanently landed, while the rest of us are still circling up in the air, waiting for clearance and a runway!”

        Nice picture, Dominic, but truth is that landing and circling are both part of duality. Anyway “circling” is another name for chasing one’s own tail.

        • Lokesh says:

          Satchit, your lofty posts are old hat in this region. They do not succeed in making you look intelligent. Quite the opposite.
          Perhaps it is time for you to land and return to earth and thus deliver a more grounded commentary on the human realm and how you experience and see it. Dual or non-dual it is entirely up to little old you.

          • satchit says:

            You are a bit funny, Lokesh.
            Simply take my loftiness as a model!
            How else will you attract disciples, which is your hidden desire?

            • Lokesh says:

              Attract disciples? Satchit, where are you living? In the bushes round the back of The Resort?

              The idea that anyone would want to attract disciples belongs to some cornball mind-set that went out with bell bottom trousers. Of course, there are a few teachers and mini-gurus and even big gurus who might want to attract disciples but I am definitely not one of them.

              In a nutshell, saying to someone that there is a hidden desire to attract disciples as some kind of put-down is really old fashioned. It no longer works. A song made famous by Chris Farlowe comes to mind:

              “You’re obsolete, my baby
              My poor old fashioned baby
              I said baby, baby, baby, you’re out of time….”

  5. satchit says:

    The problem with Osho’s teaching is that it is contradictory.

    On one side, he talked like above about commune life and on the other side he said the Master-disciple thing is just a passage, just a thorn to get rid from another thorn. And at the end, you have to throw away the first thorn too. Means in my eyes you have to say goodbye to Sannyas.

    How else shall this be interpreted?

    • kusum says:

      @ satchit
      What is Sannyas??

    • Lokesh says:

      Satchit enquires, “How else shall this be interpreted?”

      Perhaps by adapting a non-linear approach to the matter. Try circles for a start, then progress to ying-yangs and see that there is always a third force at play in the movement of the opposites.

      You can say goodbye to Sannyas if it improves your quality of life, and while you are at it you might want to enquire who or what is it that imagines it is saying goodbye and hullo…might be interesting. Kabam!

  6. sw. veet (francesco) says:

    My flag is red outside and orange inside.

    Today it is red for dialectical reasons: if the elite decided to make war on the rest of humanity is the case to take one side of the barricades, the only one available if we do not have a vocation of slaves. Not taking sides becomes the barricade.

    When one flies high with teleological issues (law, universal, permanent…like God?) I take refuge in the classic beauty, before the post-modern tore all veils, but without solving its mystery.



  7. Parmartha says:

    I guess I could remember at least 200 such moments like this one, being an actual communard did take one deeper.

    Many commentators around Sannyas never experienced actually being a communard:
    The magic of doing a job, in a relaxed way, and in good and like minded company, and against the background of surrender.

    “Ecstasy when I see your face, ecstasy, when I look in your eyes, when I feel your grace, ecstasy, when I look in your eyes, ecstascy. “

    • madhu dagmar frantzen says:

      We see the ´Gachamis’ here, I more than guess, and some of this that made sense, Parmartha.

      This SN website, though is not a psychic and social field to mirror the appreciation most of those hearts deserve, who bowed down to a vision beyond personal profit or career. And one can find out that very soon and easily by the sarcastic remarks of those who have never been there, but have an ´opinion´.

      And otherwise, SN UK provides us in abundance with ´shadow-work´ and it always takes effort to not ´throw out valuables´with the bath water´, so to say.

      It´s a beautiful pic and thank you for posting that. For me, it´s more than a ´pic.


      • Parmartha says:

        Thanks Madhu.
        I think your definition of a communard is good: Those”who bowed down to a vision beyond personal profit or career.”

        The pic is a reminder to me of some of those good times…and that they were there not because of Sheela and company, but in spite of them.

    • satchit says:

      @ Parmartha

      As far I have understood Osho, “ecstasy” is a function of the Here and Now. If there is no ecstasy I always ask myself, “what hinders me to be in the Here and Now?”

  8. Parmartha says:

    “Ordinary ecstasy” is elusive. That old song and that pic are just symbols of reminder, it can happen, and a commune or Buddhafield can help to get one there.

    Moments happens in my present life too, but I have met very, very few who are in it continuously, or able to spark it in others.

    • satchit says:

      Certainly it is elusive. Tathata means accepting the elusiveness too.
      What do we really know about the other?
      Something may resonate in us, that’s all.

      • madhu dagmar frantzen says:

        What is sharing for you, Satchit? Does such have any value for you? Or is all covered up for you by: “Something may resonate in us, that’s all”?


        • satchit says:

          Hi Madhu,
          Without sharing we cannot live – so certainly it has value. The whole forum here consists of sharing. Sharing articles, sharing comments and sharing personal interactions. You sharing your interest and questions to me and I sharing my answers and thoughts to you.

          I share what I want to share and I don’t share what I don’t want to share. Both are expressions of my freedom.

          • madhu dagmar frantzen says:

            Thanks, Satchit ,

            your response to my question is very smooth-tongued and eloquent, and it also shows, that you seem to be able to protect your integrity in an open virtual source better than me I do.

            However, we both may have a different understanding of ´sharing´also.

            Quite recently you said :”what do we really know of each other…”

            So I don´t know, if you or some others posting with indian sounding names have a
            (Osho-)Sannyas life story too.

            Especially here at this virtual SN UK
            chat- spot, it sometimes (rarely) happens ,my heart beat accelerating with a stronger beat and beyond the mind .

            I don´t second your presumption that in most of the personal interactions here, much sharing is happening.

            As sharing means to me , to show vulnerabilty too – instead of showing up with reactions ( verbally) and sometimes really playing ´weired , up to very aggressive and ´out of (not only) the topic.

            Then and there, I sigh and say ´aaah ´might be some karmic´, unresolved hurt and take (a little) break.

            Yes , you are right: what do we know of each other ? Very good a reminder.


            • satchit says:

              To be honest, I don’t know Madhu if any virtual place is the right place for vulnerability. Everbody has to decide for himself.

              In the virtual world much fake – or if you want to see it positively, playfulness – is possible. I could be the neighbour of Lokesh on his island playing jokes on him. And there is not much possibility for him to find out the truth.

              Yes, I have a sannyas life story, honestly. :-)