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Poona Ashram for Sale?
Editorial from Parmartha
Below we publish an (edited) e-mail from the Indian Sannyasin, Narendra (who we understand was Osho's cousin) in Deharadun, to take in the main substantiated points he makes. But the whole of his text can be got by e-mailing him, the e-mail address is at the end of the article. We do feel it should have the widest possible readership.
He highlights some important points, particularly the underlying racism that has been a fringe aspect of all the organisations around Osho from the beginning. For example even from 1974-81, for some reason, Indians were only allowed to do groups if carefully selected, and even in those days Laxmi (Osho's then Secretary) recruited outside Indian labour to do the so called hard labour jobs, hence there has always been a sort of second-class sort of citizenship for almost all Indians, and also Indian sannyasins, which this web-site strongly decries.
Narendra makes four main, less convincing, but trenchantly argued, points. He seems to think that the organisation leaving India per se is a bad thing. Actually barring actual desecration of Osho's samadhi and the surrounding areas, there is nothing inherently wrong in going somewhere else, after all, Osho went to the US and would probably have stayed there but for Sheela's nonsense. His second point is that actual power over finances, etc. rests with a small group of people But this, Narendra, has always been so, it is not new.
Thirdly he is worried about the ashram's changes in clothes etiquette and some Ashram routines. Osho himself however was always changing these, not least when overnight he dropped the instruction to dress in the colours of the rising sun in October, 1985, and one suspects that Narendra would be the first to "obey" his Master on such an issue.
Fourthly Narendra is rightly concerned over issues around copyright. But in actual reality no-one cares a damn about copyright and it is almost impossible to operationalise. What in reality can the organisation do. Frankly if there was anything "they" felt they could really do, they would surely have done so already. If "they" were foolish enough to try and take something to law they would be lampooned throughout the known world.
Actually the truth is, surely, that if one can be upset for any reason by any organisation, sannyas or otherwise, one must be a long way from "freedom from attachment"! And finally to play devil's advocate, if Sadhana (last part of e-mail) were to amplify her last quoted statement (we are out to erase Osho from your mind) in Deharadun, she might say we are out to erase all devotional attachment to Osho. We invite any readers so moved to e-mail us on this issue and are happy to publish both sides of the argument.!
(Edited) E-mail from Narendra
Beloved friends, Love. Please read the letter carefully and try to understand the consequences therein.
I (Narendra) believe that the commune headquarters has shifted abroad. And where to, but Switzerland? The Osho International Foundation of Bahnhofstrasse 52, 8001, Zurich, a legal outfit controlled by Michael O'Bryne and colleagues - is the sole and registered owner of the copyright of all the published and unpublished works and words of the author Osho; in all mediums. To quote this official web site we are the owner of the copyright to various writing, music, art and other products created or otherwise associated with the author Osho, and we are the owner of registered trade marks used in connection therewith ( collectively the Materials).
The word Osho is now a registered trademark and owned by The Osho International Foundation, not based in Pune, but in Zurich. All heavily patronized therapies and meditation techniques devised by Osho have a copyright vested in the Foundation. To conduct therapies like Osho Rebalancing, Osho Divine Healing, Osho Cranial Sacral balancing and Osho Tibetan Pulsing , or active meditations like mystic Rose, dynamic Meditation, Gurishankar Meditation, Kundalini Meditation, Nadabrahma Meditation or Nataraj meditation, the Foundation's permission is necessary.
There is an intermediary outfit - a US registered company, Osho International, 570 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 10022 that has been appointed by the Osho International Foundation as manager for handling the day to day administration of granting permission to use the work and the trademarks.
Osho International NY has become the publishing centre for Osho. The official web site says it manages the archive for the Osho International Foundation, Zurich. The company functions as rights administrator and book packager for the publishing areas of meditation, body-mind-spirit, philosophy and spirituality. This archive comprises 7000 hours of audio and video recordings, published as 350 separate book titles. In addition, there are several hundred pieces of Osho art, meditation techniques (each with their own music) and an archive of music created by musicians inspired by Osho's Vision. So the enormous amount of royalty on copyright and franchises collected from publishers, audio tape producers, or centres and resorts all over the world, except in India, goes to NY and then to Zurich to legal outfits controlled by a handful of non-Indians.
The end result of ownership will remain in the hands of Sw Jayesh, Sw Mukesh, and Sw Amrito who will operate from Switzerland, and all monies will be gathered in the name of the expansion of Osho's Vision. You can say that money will be collected through royalties, franchise and trademarks world-wide, and then deposited via Osho International NY and then finally in OIF in Zurich, Switzerland. As I know Osho always used to say to everybody and anybody to go work in the market place and make him available, but by this strategy if you want to lead meditations or centres, if you do not seek the permission or pay the royalty, then you will be restrained/prosecuted.
In July 1996, during Guru-Purnima celebrations, Osho sannyasins and Lovers contributed lots of money to purchase land and to build a Dharmashala to facilitate affordable accommodation for Indian sannyasins. But even after 4 years, neither the land is/was purchased nor the Dharmashala built. No one knows where that money has gone, except Jayesh, Mukesh and Amrito.
You may not be aware that the Foundation had bought a silk cotton mill in Mumbai to refit as a transit hostel for overseas sannyasins, who are coming via Mumbai. This however is now for sale.
Ma Amrit Sadhana (member of the inner circle) came to the Osho Resort, Deharadun, to conduct a 3 day meditation camp. 24th to 26th March but her emphasis on not to wear maroon robes during meditations and sannyas initiations and not to wear white robe during Osho White Robe Brotherhood upset most of the sannyasins and Osho Lovers. Ma Amrit Sadhana herself did not wear maroon or white robes for a single day during the meditation camp. She even conducted dynamic meditation one morning in jeans and a shirt to demonstrate the changes which the inner circle are bringing in
The punchline from Ma Amrit Sadhana, member of the inner circle; we are erasing Osho from your mind/memory.
Swami Narendra Bodhisatva, Osho Om Bodhisatva Commune, 108, Post office Road, Clement Town, Deharadun 248002 (U.P) India.
Tel: +91 0135 640 587