Home | Articles | Listings | Community Noticeboard

Editor's Bytes: December, 2001

Is New Pyramid really to be New Buddha Hall?
The seventh (and perhaps final?) pyramid construction within the commune (said to be based on Osho's last instructions) is almost completed, and may be up and running in January. Osho himself considered that the pyramids of Egypt were actually the work of mystics, who somehow had figured out the esoteric, as well as temporal power of such structures. The esoteric power was that meditating at the centre of a pyramid automatically deepens the meditation, at the same time a pyramid is said to refresh the life force automatically, and an hour a day inside of one can lead to long life.
Whatever the mystical background, the present construction far out-competes all the others, being some nine storeys high. It is visible at a distance, and changes the Pune city skyline. Making the pyramid has spared no expense, being fully air-conditioned and floored with green Udaipur marble. The construction will finally address the problem of noise for the commune's neighbours, hence cathartic meditations such as dynamic will be able to be done in the way that Osho originally intended, and not tailored to cut out noise. However the remit of the construction is hugely ambitious beyond this. It includes the provision of a kitchen where 5,000 people may eat, a four storey guest house for 60 people, and many other features.
The transfer of some of the functions of what is now being called the "Old" Buddha Hall to this new structure are more contentious. The space in which Osho himself gave his lectures and where generations of sannyasins meditated with him, is seemingly to loose its significance. As is often the case (not just in sannyas) those interested in the temporal affairs of a master sometimes "miss'". It is difficult to see why the energy field that still surrounds Buddha Hall, and arguably has grown in time, should not remain as it is.

Make Sense of This
Two well known sannyasins, who I feel grateful to have once lived with in the Medina Commune in England in the eighties, seem to be having their own temporal problems lately. Miten, a universally well known sannyasin musician, who actually composed many of the songs that we have all sung for ages, has seemingly got his marching orders from the Pune Commune. The reason being that he has played music at some satsangs of so-called "enlightened" sannyasins . For example he is due as I understand it to visit and play in Maitreya's commune in New Zealand early in the new year. Can anyone write to sannyasnews and explain the logic in this?
This follows the equally strange case earlier in the year when Mitra, who was responsible for the whole Friends of Osho website, etc was debarred from commune entrance on the grounds he had posted articles, materials, etc from those thought to be critical of the Pune commune on his website. The end of wisdom may be to "be" for oneself, but the beginning of it, is surely to "think" for oneself. The fact that Mitra's site posted both sides of a debate can only further the latter. In the light of Osho's last public words which were "Be a light unto yourself", this decision seems bizarre.

Bliss Beyond Fear - the New Book about Veeresh's Work (by Dharmaraj Carrivick)
I never thought I would live to see it – the intellectualisation of Veeresh's work! Perhaps that's why this very beautifully produced book, recently published, seems so difficult to get hold of. If there was one sannyasin therapist who one could think of, who encapsulates anti-intellectualisation, it must be Veeresh! How many times has one heard in the company of Humaniveristy students the time honoured phrase, 'got to get out of your head, man!" Hence one must wonder, as to the why and how of such a book!
As it turns out, it is a pretty "heady" tome! If you tore out the Osho and edited it a bit more, you would have a perfect university textbook in humanistic psychology. Of course there are some fault lines to Veeresh's work, but where addiction rules, and whose not to say that we all don't have addictions of one sort or another, then this type of encounter and catharsis work has a record of achievement, and not only within the confines of the Humaniveristy. This book makes this clear by a respectful biography of Veeresh's eclectic past, and the debt he owes to all those therapies he not only visited, but commendably immersed himself in, earlier in life. However the book does not include the self-criticism that many other books on similar therapies readily admit, that such therapies find strategies to replace maybe bad (socially unacceptable) habits by good (socially acceptable), but often genuinely wonder whether those undergoing therapy end up really by "seizing the day", and embrace true self-reliance – outside the groups or communities in which they therapise. Of whether, in the jargon of psychological theory, they replace one totalitarian ego "boss" by another, and that "boss" often reflects the social "conventions" of the communities to which they belong. This book could do with a bit of that type of self-criticism, if it were to claim a wider appeal and audience.
Veeresh's work IS eclectic, and it therefore cannot offer itself at the alter of some overarching psychological theoretical framework. Some attempt at a "universal" psychological theory must embrace not only neurosis, but psychosis, and so-called normality, and somehow reach all human dilemmas, and offer some kind of explanation and insight into them. Hence this book would have been wise to avoid describing itself as a psychological theory. However it can offer for those who don't know him, some good and honest , biographical narrative on Veeresh's own commendable battles with addiction, and for those maybe who wish to take their acquaintance with Veeresh and his "Humaniversity" therapy further, a useful handbook.

(This book can be obtained through Osho Purnima website or telephone Purnima mail order on (from UK) 01268 584141)

Death of Michel De Salzmann

The last living link with George Gurdjieff, who Osho was said to have rated above all other 20th century teachers, has recently died. Michel de Saltzmann must have had good karma, for he spent almost all of his childhood around Gurdjieff. He was the son of Jeanne and Alexandre Salzmann, who were amongst Gurdjieff's leading disciples for over 20 years, whilst he was alive. Michel's mother, Jeanne de Salzmann was particularly involved with Gurdjieff's dances and movements, and helped to bring them to the screen in Peter Brook's film "Meetings with Remarkable Men" (1979). Jeanne herself lived to 101, but refused to write a single line of memoir about Gurdjieff, which in a way authenticated her discipleship.
Michel was almost equally silent, but kept the work of Gurdjieff alive by his devotion to the "Institute Gurdjieff" in Paris which continued to act as a conduit of Gurdjieff's teachings. However one thing he wrote about Gurdjieff is truly worthy of remembrance, and bespeaks his personal knowledge of the real man. He wrote, "he was a danger. A real threat. A threat for one's self-calming, a threat for the little regard one had for oneself, a threat for the comfortable repertoire where we generally live. But at the moment when the threat appeared, like a ditch to cross, a threshold to step over, one was helped to cross it by his presence itself." I think this eloquently echoes the feelings of many of us who subsequently lived in Osho's Buddhafield.
Parmartha (Dec, 2001)