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An Interview about Enlightenment with Shanti Kristian

Question: Isn't enlightenment bound to happen to at least some of us? Are transformations already happening around us?

Answer: Yes, enlightenment is certainly bound to happen. I remember Osho saying several times that He expected approximately 200 sannyasins to become enlightened when He left His body. Shortly before He stopped talking for the last time, I remember Him actually saying that there was almost 200 now. They do hide remarkably well, since only a very few have said anything in public about their enlightenment.

In my own case, it happened 16 years ago. I kept it completely secret for five or six years and even denied it when somebody asked me if I had realized. In 1987, I wrote to Osho during the winter when I was in Pune. He sent a letter back, giving me His blessings. He had, of course, known it well before that time. There are several who got their enlightenment blessed by Osho this way, but He was so compassionate that He did not publish it. And since Osho left His body, some of His sannyasins have reached enlightenment on their own, or when they came in contact with other masters.

Question: Do you think you would recognize an enlightened sannyasin?

Answer: The answer is yes. When you are enlightened, it is possible to recognize another who is. And there are some who can recognize awakened ones even before they are enlightened themselves. The recognition is difficult to explain in words, but something happens within both people when two enlightened ones who have never before met come near each other. The feeling is one of such deep joy that there is a tendency to share a belly laugh with each other. It often happens without any words spoken. The recognition is a kind of tasting of one another's being, which is transferred neither through words nor through non-words.

Question: How do you feel about sannyasins who sit with a sannyasin who has declared him/herself enlightened?

Answer: Shortly before Osho went into silence for the last time, in the lecture He gave on January 18, 1989, He asked - in very strong terms to my ears- those of His sannyasins who had become enlightened to step forward and show themselves. He speaks through Yakusan, but anyone with ears can hear what He is saying. I would strongly recommend getting this video and watching it. Don't just read the book, you must watch the video. Strangely enough, it seems only a few of Osho's people heard what He was saying. I have asked several sannyasins, and most of them did not seem to hear him.

On another occasion He said, "If your journey is not complete with me when I am here, if something is still to be done, completed, then don't be afraid. By dropping me you will not be betraying me. In fact, by not dropping me and by not following the real, the alive Master, you will be betraying me. Keep it in mind." (Sufis: The People of the Path, Vol. 1, Chapter 3)

I cannot see that there is anything to say against this. On the other hand, if a sannyasin has a strong connection to Osho that still works for him or her, it may not be necessary to go to anybody else. This is certainly a matter for each sannyasin to decide for him- or herself.

Question: How do you feel about a sannyasin who has declared him/herself "awakened" holding darshan in the ashram?

Answer: Ordinarily, it takes years to draw all the consequences of enlightenment. It is such a vast thing, it changes your outlook on almost every aspect of life. It is only when all the consequences are drawn that sufficient clarity and sharpness can be derived. In most cases, it also takes a long time for the transition from sabeej samadhi to nirbeej samadhi. Osho Himself kept His enlightenment secret, if I remember correctly, for about five years, which was the time He considered necessary to get everything together.

It is absolutely necessary that the enlightenment of an Osho sannyasin reach this degree of maturity before he or she holds darshans or satsangs in an Osho ashram. After Osho, the requirements for being a Master should be higher than ever before.

This is an excerpt from an interview by Ma Sharya, previously published in Viha Connection. Details of Shanti Kristian's current activites/satsangs/etc are available through his website at http://home.swipnet.se/shantikristian/