Rajneesh (1931-1990), was an Indian-born and self-proclaimed ‘guru’ and ‘mystic’ who openly embraced the greed of capitalism and the anti-Socialist rhetoric the US Cold War effort. He rejected the usual Hindu spiritual practises of austerity, and instead taught that it was not the giving-up of desire that would gain enlightenment, but rather the exact opposite – the full and continuous indulging of each and every desire. Rajneesh was not interested in the poor, or in relieving the suffering of the poor. Instead, he preferred White, middle class Americans, usually from California and possessing academic degrees in psychology. Although Rajneesh made millions out of his corrupt teachings, (he possessed 93 Rolls Royce cars and a small fleet of personal aircraft, as well as Swiss Bank Accounts, etc), it was his association with these academics that allowed Rajneesh’s corrupt teachings into the West, prior to his relocating to Oregon in the US (in 1981) after being expelled from India.
When joining his cult, all new adherents had to hand over control of their personal wealth, and subject to every whim of Rajneesh himself (and the other commune members). AIDS and STDs were rife, as everyone was encouraged to participate in continuous and indiscriminate sexual activity. Rajneesh was popular amongst Americans because he did not demand the usual discipline and ‘giving-up’ associated with the more conventional Indian spiritualities. Instead, Rajneesh (also known today as ‘Osho’) embraced ‘hedonism’ as both the highest goal and the highest good. The problem was that as his power grew and the internal conditions of his commune deteriorated, he authorised the development of an ‘armed’ paramilitary police forced which he used to keep people from leaving his movement and exposing it to the outside world. Rajneesh also used this paramilitary police force as a means to discourage any interference in the commune from the US Authorities who had started to receive all kinds of complaints and reports about the behaviour of Rajneesh and the conditions within his commune. although Rajneesh was fully supportive of the anti-Socialist drive of the US Government, and steadfastly refused to ‘share’ anything with anyone (everything was paid for in the commune), the US Authorities would not allow a commune to develop into a separate and distinct geo-political area within the United States.
Matters were made worse by the fact that drug-taking was common-place throughout the commune, with Rajneesh’s lieutenants ‘listening’ to everyone’s conversations through bugging devices planted throughout the many buildings (including the special luxury accommodation Rajneesh had constructed to house Hollywood stars who followed his teachings). The pressure to maintain this level of destructive hedonism often lead to violence and rape. As Rajneesh was very well aware that his hedonism was illegal in the US, he and his subordinates developed a paranoid attitude toward the US Authorities amplified by the effects of long nights with no sleep, and the constant intake of illicit drugs. This heady mix of mind-distorting drugs and activity led to Rajneesh establish a laboratory in the commune tasked with developing biological and chemical weapons to be used against the US Authorities should the commune be attacked by law enforcement agencies. They focused upon Salmonella – and even tested this on unsuspecting US Authority employees – but at that time a direct link could not be proven (as the agents involved suffered illness but not death in 1984). According to evidence, Rajneesh’s followers tried to infect the US public on numerous occasions, but each test failing to achieve the intended result. Rajneesh was becoming ever more desparate to ‘sweep away’ those in the US Authorities whom he perceived as ‘blocking’ his attempt at establishing his commune as an ‘official’ place of residence (such as a city in its own right). This attitude demonstrates just how mad he actually was.
Although his movement fell apart – and he was eventually deported back to India – the Rajneesh movement is growing again in the world under his alternative name of ‘Osho’ despite the fact the man that used that name died in 1990! Interestingly, I once met a British woman who had been involved with the Rajneesh commune in India in the late 1980’s (after Rajneesh had been deported back to that country). Her viewpoint was that everything related above (and explained in greater detail in the video below) is US Government lies. Certainly, the small commune this group of people occupied in Torquay, South Devon, was tolerant, loving and caring toward one another and myself. I was visiting briefly in those days (probably in the early 1990’s), to meet a friend arriving from the Nederlands for a few hours. I was fed for free and never once asked for money. Of course, this was not an official Oshso commune as far as I know, but the woman involved explained how the Indian Authorities had raided their new commune and ‘stolen’ the dead body of Rajneesh – apparently tying a rope around his feet and draging the corpse across the ground! As a Socialist (i.e. ‘Marxist-Leninist’), I keep a firm and non-inverted mind-set so as to gather reliable information (as a type of ethnography). I have no way of telling if the above information is entirely true given that the US Authorities often ‘lie’ as a political tactic, on the other hand nor do I support capitalism, terrorism or exploitation. As always, do your own research and make up your own minds.