An Open letter
July 17th 2009,
San Francisco, California, USA
Dear friends at OFI (Osho Friends International)
As one of the many friends whose work has been impacted by the Washington D.C. decision against OIF (Osho International Foundation), I want to thank all of you responsible for the great work you all have done- again.
It has been a long journey- ten years is a long time, but in the bigger picture of things (if I possess such a grandiose outlook) It most likely will remain and continue to be seen as a landmark case that will impact many, many seekers way beyond the realm of those who either know or love Osho. No less importantly, it may be used many individuals or like-minded groups who find themselves in similar situations of intimidation or blackmail by the powers that be.
The metaphor of the 'Strength of the Rose' has perhaps never been so apropos as it now seems from this recent decision. One only wonders why it took so long!
I certainly have had many bouts of wondering where my old friends spines were over these past years since being served (and honored with) my first banning over 18 years ago. I can hardly count the times that I have heard from close friends or even past collaborators of the many Osho festivals I have organized; " Let it go Harideva" or "What is this thing with the friends at the Resort that you keep on harping about" or “Why do you need to make them the enemy, they are doing such good work..."etc. I admit that I felt very alone and sad at times but I also know that I was not unique in receiving this kind of ill informed feedback or suffering the sometimes down feelings associated with them.
I must add, that over the years, there have also been hundreds of friends who risked either their reputations within the Jayesh grid or their positions within the ‘Resorts’ hierarchy to speak up publically with their own clear voices in support of Freedom. To these friends I owe much. If I were to say that I can stand on my own without the support of friends would be a lie. I need community and I am especially beholden to my family at Viha.
While we may find ourselves basking in the delight or righteousness of the American courts decision, it is not a time to stop. If we are honest, we recognize that there still remains for our friends in Europe, Russia, and beyond many of the same issues to deal with. In deed, the sly foxes in London where OIF has moved their operations have not been caged, there is every chance they are regrouping, with lessons learned, for a ‘come back tour de force’ in Europe this summer.
It is understandable that for perhaps for some of us there might be thoughts of ‘We have done more than our share, let the ‘others’ now take up the cause and do there fair share. As I have said, this is more than understandable. Who in their right mind would after having run an extended marathon would be willing to down a quick glass of water and find them selves at the start of yet another 20 Kilometer run! My hope is that all of these efforts have been done in the spirit of celebration and love. In THIS kind of heart space, it is my understanding that we would rejoice at having another go of it… It is a good game, but I must add- this team of friends from OFI (Osho Friends International), and the many others dedicated to opening up Oshos vision to all, not just Jayeshs’ chosen few, have raised the bar and shown how it can be done. Others may want to now take up the torch and continue to do the final work in Europe and beyond. Give these guys a huge cheer!
Be that as it may, this in no way precludes asking our friends in Europe and beyond if they want our help. At the same time I cannot presume that many Osho lovers would want to run the same race. After having witnessed the time and great amount of financial resources that it took to arrive at the good news from Washington D.C., I suspect that those who are well informed enough of the continuing implications of Jayesh and company’s crusade, there might not be many individuals or centers who would want to take on such a legal challenge. A friend adds “I suspect [ many] have no idea of the challenge of spending weeks or months wallowing in the negativity of the lies these guys spin in the way you need to do in a legal case. I have found it fun and the challenge energizing at times, but overall it was exhausting.”
This summer, many, if not all of the Osho center leaders will meet for their annual get together. There will be many topics discussed and many proposals tabled. I would love to be there because I expect that their will be great energy and excitement and a wonderful rush from hearing of the New York decision.
The 800 pound gorilla in the room this summer will undoubtedly be whether they individually or as a group can or will want to press ahead with a somewhat similar defense for their freedom to share Osho’s work. The same friend closely associated with this case points out: “I think the fact that the US has found Osho generic will have a major impact on any other legal decisions. The copyright issue is separate, but OIF claimed to own the copyright in the TM case and they weren't believed. I think probably the most important point is that the TM decision illustrates that OIF is running a big bluff about everything. The details of this are on the OFI website. I think the US TM decision will make courts around the world wonder about the credibility of OFI's claims. I hope it also wakes up the community to the dishonesty of the claims too.”
I want to encourage a continued open and honest conversation with all concerned from both sides of this ongoing story.
I have said continually, and it remains my strong belief that as different as we might all seem individually and as forcefully opposite our opinions might seem, I hold that there is one powerful aspect of our lives that will forever join us together and that is the love we feel in our hearts for this wonderfully insane/ beyond sane master and Friend Osho.
If we are honest with ourselves, we know that we are not a fixed and frozen entity- we are processes, and in being so we see the thoughts come and go. The heart opens and sometimes closes. We all suffer the identification of feeling like our own personal winter will last forever to then finding the epiphany and delight of being thrown into yet another love affair. If we are lucky to have learned anything from this life, it is that change is inevitable and that one of the greatest feelings is that of the ‘Let Go’. Love is the answer if only through the grace of life we can finally really feel it.
A million thanks again to all of you. Spread the word and the joy. Lets keep going for it…
I.H.O., Swami Harideva
July 17th 2009, San Francisco, California, USA
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No Sad Guru, Only Sadguru
The last thing we need is a 'Sad' guru.
We need to have a glass of good wine with someone less fortunate, give some friends out of work some employment, apologize to someone you've hurt and forget about these friggin spiritual questions as if if we all decide "yes we need a Sat guru..." one will descend from the heavens. All of these postulations give us yet another excuse NOT to do whatever good we can TODAY.
Probably the question was inoscent and meant to "PROVOKE DEEP REFLEXTION..." No nastyness meant in that case...
Let me offer an alternative question- "What have you done recently that might make Osho smile?" Then do some more. 'Sitting silently doing nothing' is not enough. Sit silently then get off your ass and do something heartfelt...you know, plant a tree, help feed the homeless- This shit is very very good for the heart... and others are watching. For all you know,. the person next to you also serving food might be the Satguru...
In deep apology for being myself, harideva.