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The Banning of Dhanyam

(Dhanyam, Editor of Viha Connection speaks of his being banned by Osho International, republished with permission from Viha Connection, July/August 2006)

On the last Sunday in April we had satsang in our house and didn’t answer the phone for a few hours. Later that day I was surprised to see three calls from Osho International in New York on the caller ID, but no message on the machine. I was very curious why they seemed so anxious to speak with me. On Monday I found out when Pramod called again: He wanted to pass on the message from the Inner Circle that I am banned from visiting the Resort in Pune.

From what I understand, the Inner Circle meets in secret. They issue no reports and don’t give out any information. I don’t know who had accused me of what charges. I didn’t have any opportunity to reply, explain, or refute any of them. It is like being on trial without even knowing it; there is a prosecutor, a judge, and a judgment is passed, but the accused is not present and can’t defend himself, or have anyone speak for him. I don’t even know if I am banned for one year, ten years, or the rest of my life. Nothing was issued in writing, so all I have to go on are the few notes I was able to take during my phone conversation with Pramod.

Avinasho and I were planning to visit the Resort this coming December. The week before the phone call I had emailed Vatayana, a member of the Inner Circle, to see if there was any problem with our visit. I didn’t want to end up in the same situation as a friend who arrived in Pune and found out at the Welcome Centre that he was banned. When you are banned you are not informed, so if you don’t ask, you may not find out until you reach the front gate and try to enter. Quite shocking – and expensive!

Although I am a low-key person, over the years there have been many false reports, lies, and rumours about me. The latest report I heard recently is that I am starting a “Californian kingdom.” I don’t even know what that means.

When I asked Pramod why he thought I was banned he gave me several reasons. He said that I had removed the note about copyrights and trademarks from our website. When I asked our webmaster about that, he told me that we never had any such note on our website.

Pramod also said that I am involved up to my neck in the lawsuit currently being fought over the trademarking of the word “Osho.” The truth is that, apart from having been subpoenaed to testify and having been grilled for six hours by the lawyers, I have nothing to do with the lawsuit. (Being subpoenaed meant that I had no choice about giving testimony.) I have kept Viha and myself out of any involvement. Pramod also mentioned that he was unhappy with what I said in my deposition, but I simply told the truth. What else could I say?

Finally Pramod told me that I have attacked Osho’s work. This accusation was especially shocking and incomprehensible to me. After devoting 20 years of my life to running the Osho Viha Centre – without any pay – and putting all my energy into making Osho available to all I am now accused of attacking Osho.

They can say what they want, believe what they want, and ban me from the Resort, but I love Osho, He is my Master and lives in my heart. I will continue to make Him available and suggest to people to visit the Resort. It is a beautiful place – even if I am banned.

In my 20 years of running the Osho Viha Centre I have encountered many strange characters, but I have never banned anyone. I have always made Osho available, and every issue has resolved itself beautifully. My trust in Osho is total, and my love for Him and my energy for doing His work have been consistent for the past 20 years. I love being His postman and will continue with this work, as I trust Osho in this and all situations.

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