The Last Testament Vol 1 25

TwentyFifth Discourse from the series of 30 discourses - The Last Testament Vol 1 by Osho.
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Helmut Werb
Rock Star, Italy; Music Express, Germany, Netherlands; O’keg, Sweden; Music Man, Austria; Fi, England; Concrete, Mexico
When I came here I didn't know what to expect, and I'm so taken, the last two days. I was really looking forward to finally talking to you – especially after discourse this morning. I greatly enjoyed it.
I'm working for twelve different magazines. I asked each magazine to submit one question, and roughly one-third are my own questions. I have about thirty questions, so if we can time it around that. Some are very simple, some will be controversial, and I am told…
I will make the simple ones also controversial.
I appreciate that very much!
Several newspapers in New York reported that the number of Rajneeshees worldwide is declining, and that you're running out of resources. After several years of silence you have started talking again and giving interviews. Is this part of a membership drive, or is it just your wish to communicate?
In the first place, sannyasins are increasing all over the world; there is no question of their decrease. Secondly, I don’t believe in converting anybody. I believe that the very effort to convert somebody is trespassing his freedom, his being. I can say what I want to say, but there is no effort to convert anybody to sannyas. In my whole life I have never converted a single person to sannyas. Although there are one million sannyasins around the world, they have all come to me of their own accord. And I am against all kinds of missionary work, conversion, making people Christians or Hindus or Mohammedans. Every individual has the right to be himself.
I can say to the person – not as an authority that, “I am the only begotten son of God, so you have to believe me, and unless you believe me you are lost. If you believe me you are saved.” These strategies are simply cunning, political, playing on man’s fear and greed; exploiting man, taking advantage of his innocence, ignorance.
I am against the whole company of messiahs, prophets, founders of religions. A single man has declared war against all the religions of the world. For thirty-five years continuously I have been fighting with every argument that they have proposed, and they have not been able to support any of their dogmas, and they have not been able to answer any of my questions.
So the people who have come to me have come out of their own freedom, intelligence. They could understand me, what I am saying, and they could see the fallacy that I was showing them. But unless somebody comes to me, asks for sannyas… I am in no way going to interfere into his fundamental right of being himself. Right or wrong, that does not matter – who am I to decide what is right for him, what is wrong for him? I can say how I have found my bliss, my joy; that’s all. If your heart starts feeling me, if your heart starts beating with me, and a desire arises in you for adventure, for new spaces, new ecstasies, I am available – not as a leader but only as a friend.
This is the first time that one million people have gathered around a man who claims no miracles, who claims no authority, who claims no speciality – who only claims that he is a friend. And if you enjoy my friendship you are welcome. The moment you feel that our paths now separate, I give you my heartfelt blessings, the same way as I had given to you when you had come to me. Nobody is prevented from going; nobody is pushed, manipulated to come.
I have started speaking for my own reasons. I do everything according to my own reasons. I never bother about the world around me, and I don’t care at all. For three years I was silent because I wanted a few people who were wrongly hanging around me because they were intellectually convinced – and that is not really to be with me – so I wanted to get rid of those people. But I am not rude to anybody. I have never said to anybody to come, I have never said to anybody to go. But I have my own devices. Three and a half years of silence was enough for them; they could not stand it. They were interested in words, they were interested in my theories, they were interested in my arguments – their approach was intellectual. They dropped out.
The moment I saw that the wrong people had dropped, I started speaking again. Now I am speaking to those people who do not expect me even to speak. In three and a half years of silence they were with me with the same joy. If I was going to remain silent forever, they were going to be with me with the same joy. Now it is a question deeper than intellect, it is closer to a love affair. You don’t think about it – suddenly you know you are in love. Suddenly your whole being starts feeling a dance, suddenly you start whistling, you want to sing. If something like this happens to anybody around me, then only is he with me, my fellow traveler.
So I have sorted out the people politely, given them the opportunity to leave of their own accord – so I need not tell them to go away because they are with me for wrong reasons.
Logic is a game. If two persons discuss something and one person wins the discussion, that does not mean that what he is saying is the truth. All that it means is that he has more logical, argumentative, caliber than the other one. The other one may have the truth – the defeated one may have the truth but is not articulate enough. So truth cannot be decided by logic, argumentation; its decision is something deeper. It is of the heart in the beginning, and in the end it is of the being itself.
So now I am speaking to my own people, and now I can open my whole heart to them without even bothering to argue for what I am saying – without giving any evidence, any proofs. They know me, that unless it is something that is going to help them I am not going to say it. It is not a question of right and wrong; it is a question of helping them on the path.
So now I have my people around the world. They are increasing every day, because I am the only alternative in the whole world against all the religions and against all the politicians. Against all nations and against all races, I am the only alternative. I stand for the simple human being – I don’t want him to be German, I don’t want him to be African, I don’t want him to be American or Russian, I don’t want him to be Catholic, Protestant, Hindu, Buddhist, Mohammedan. All these are meaningless.
History is full of all this nonsense, and because of this, man has stopped growing thousands of years ago. I want man to be completely clean of the past, so he can become totally available to the present and to the future.
The number of sannyasins will be increasing every day, faster and faster, for two reasons. The politicians are creating the situation – I am not converting anybody – the politicians are creating the situation in which, if they succeed, this whole beautiful life on the earth will be destroyed. And the politicians can disappear only if nations disappear; war can disappear only if nations disappear.
My people belong to no nation. They claim the right of the whole earth.
The religious leaders, on the other hand, have led people to a very dangerous disease: AIDS. Politicians have come to nuclear weapons – that is their logical end – and religious leaders have come to AIDS.
AIDS is a by-product of the monasteries, nunneries and the preachers who have been telling people to remain celibate. If you put people…Men confined in one place, women confined in another place, you are preparing the ground for homosexuality. Nobody can be celibate, it is against nature. It is against your physiology, against your biology, against your chemistry. So just taking a vow of celibacy is not going to change the whole program of your biochemistry. Then your biology will find some roundabout way – that’s what perversion is.
And that homosexuality has ultimately culminated in this disease, AIDS, which is going to take over the whole world like wildfire. My communes will be the only refuge, because only in my communes I am trying to destroy all kinds of perversions and bring people back to nature, to their natural being; respecting their bodies, loving their bodies, and trying to understand that sex is natural only with the opposite pole. Only a man and a woman can create authentic orgasm. All other ways of orgasm are just phony, and in the name of orgasm nothing is achieved, cannot be achieved.
I am the alternative against nuclear weapons because I am creating meditative people, silent people, peaceful people who do not want to destroy this earth. And against AIDS I am creating communes all over the world, like oases where people will be back in the garden of Eden from where that idiot God pushed them out.
In one of the interviews, you mentioned that you want to take over the world.
I am taking it over; I am already on the way. But my ways of taking over the world are not those of Adolf Hitler or Alexander the Great. Those idiots have failed so badly that no intelligent person can try to take over the world in their way. I have my own way.
My way is to create more and more loving, peaceful, silent people around the world. That’s my empire. But in my empire everybody is an emperor, nobody is a slave.
I am taking over the world. There is no other way for humanity to survive. Soon the people who are hostile to me will be begging that they should be allowed in the commune, because in the outside society, if it is found they have AIDS, they are going to be condemned the way lepers were condemned in the past. Lepers were not allowed to live in the cities; they had to live outside. They could not move in the daylight; they had to move in the night. They could not take water from the well of the town; they had a separate well outside the city. And leprosy is not such a dangerous thing.
There has never been anything more dangerous than AIDS. So the politicians and the religious leaders are pushing anybody who has a little intelligence to become a sannyasin. I don’t need to go for conversion – they are pushing people toward me.
So it will be in the end the only way to survive?
This is the only way – not in the end, but right now, in the beginning. Because in the end…
That's the end!
…it is all finished.
You call Jesus a mental case and a crackpot.
And the pope to you is the Polack Pope and an idiot, and their religion is stupid.
I agree with you. You identify yourself, however, as a religious leader…
No? What are you, then?
Just a simple human being, just like you – with the little difference that your eyes are closed and my eyes are open. But you can open your eyes any moment and the difference disappears. Or, I may close my eyes… Just that much difference, nothing much.
First I will try for you to open your eyes: but if I feel that everybody wants to sleep, then why should I bother? I should go to sleep myself! I don’t take anything seriously.
Leaders are serious people, taking the responsibility of the flock. And that’s why I call them names, because I cannot find worse condemnations for these people. Jesus I call a crackpot, a mental case, a man with a wish to die. And his whole life is the life of a schizophrenic. The behavior is enough proof: he curses a fig tree – can you think a man sane if he curses a fig tree because there are no figs on it? And it was not the season for figs! The poor fig tree, what can she do? But he was angry because he had come from a village where people had refused to give food to him and his twelve fools that he used to call apostles. And they were all hungry and tired, and then they came to the fig tree, and there were no fruits.
And this man talks about, “Love your enemy.” Even, “Love your neighbor,” – which is more difficult than loving your enemy! I can love the enemy very easily, because there is so much distance between the enemy and me, but to love the neighbor is just like loving your wife.
This man is talking about love, this man is talking about compassion, kindness, and he is not compassionate to the poor fig tree. And somebody cursing a tree – what do you think of him? If I call him a crackpot nothing is wrong in it; he was absolutely insane.
He interfered with people’s ways of life. For example, in the temple of Jerusalem, where moneychangers have been doing that kind of business for centuries, since the time of Moses when the temple was built… And in fact those moneychangers were of tremendous help to the land and to the people, because with all the donations that came to the temple those moneychangers were giving loans to poor people on a very nominal interest. And Jesus goes and throws over their tables and pushes them out of the temple with a whip, and he says, “This is my father’s house and I will not allow anybody to pollute it with money.”
Now, this man has no proof that he is the son of God. There are many mad people around the world who think they are the son of God, they are prophets, they are messiahs – and they are all in mental asylums. They also don’t have any proof. What proof does Jesus have? Any certificate from God, any message stamped by God, signed by God? What proof does he have – just a poor carpenter’s son? That too is not certain, whether his father was his father.
But you are Osho, you are the enlightened one. Are you perfect?
No. The “enlightened one” simply means one who has come to know himself, that’s all. The prophet dominates; he predicts; he gives you doctrines, theologies. You have to believe in him. He himself cannot prove anything about hell or heaven or God; all are fictions. But if all are fictions, his being a prophet flops – because then without those fictions, how can he be the prophet? If there is no God, then how can Jesus claim, “I am the only begotten son of God”?
So these prophets are trying to keep all the fictions, all the lies, because amongst those lies they can declare themselves to be prophets. And the people who can believe in a God no one has ever seen, the people who can believe in hell and heaven – no one has come back to give us a little detail about these places – are gullible. Any cunning person who is a little articulate can declare himself a prophet and these people will believe him, because believing is all that they know. And if he is the type like Jesus – so angry that he throws single-handedly all the moneychangers out of the temple and declares, “It is my father’s house and I am going to clean it of all impurities” – naturally the gullible will see and believe in him.
I am not a prophet, because I don’t have any consolation for anybody, and I don’t have any hope for anybody. I don’t sell opium to people. And that is the basic function of a prophet – he is a dope dealer.
The messiahs are trying to save the whole of humanity. They have not been able to save themselves. Now Jesus must have been a fanatical idiot. Even on the cross, he still believes that he is going to be saved by God. But when he sees that time is passing, blood is oozing, he is thirsty, he shouts at the sky. The sky is empty, no answer comes. Never has any answer come from the sky. Millions of people have been praying; no prayer has been answered.
Jesus shouts, almost angry, frustrated, “Have you forsaken me?” He is talking to God – he was still believing that God would come sitting on a white cloud, with angels playing on their harps, singing alleluia. Nobody came, nothing happened. People simply laughed at the stupidity of the man. Even on the cross, he had not come back to sanity.
And the whole of Christianity is based upon his crucifixion. That’s why the cross has become its symbol. I call it “crossianity,” I don’t call it Christianity. It has nothing to do with Christ. Its whole thing is the cross, and the cross is a symbol of death.
So I don’t say that Reverend Jim Jones did anything which goes against Jesus. He simply followed him to the very logical end. Jesus was saying to people, “Soon I will go and prepare the ground for you, and soon you will all be coming, and you will be with me and with God the father in paradise.” Reverend Jones, of course, was an American and believed in speed, and he knew that two thousand years have passed and the “soon” is not finished yet! It seems a different time scale exists in paradise. So he did not want to take any chance; he took all his followers with him. Why bother coming back and then take them?
Reverend Jones is just part of the whole Christian attitude. It is strange that Christians started condemning that man.
I would like to come back to Jonestown a bit later if you will allow me.
In connection with what you said about a “cleaning process,” I would like to ask a follow-up question. A lot of ex-sannyasins left you disappointed – maybe in that process when you decided not to talk anymore – and some felt that you exploit your followers to sustain an extravagant lifestyle. Your former Italian cook, Deeksha, called you a liar in The Oregonian; your former bodyguard, Shivamurti, said you are dishonest. How do you feel about these people personally? What would you say to them?
I love them still, the same as I have always loved them. And what they are saying is not wrong. I have never said that I never lie. If a lie is helpful, I am the first person to immediately lie. Truth is not a value to me – helping those people who have come to me, in every possible way… And they are all asleep: they cannot understand the language of the one who is awake.
So every enlightened person has lied and, of course, they did not have the guts to say so. I don’t have any problem in accepting the truth that I lie. The whole question is: what helps to wake you up? For example, if you are not waking up, I can lie and shout in your ears that your house is on fire. It is not on fire, but what to do? Hearing that your house is on fire, you jump out of bed and you wake up – and then I can say I am sorry that I had to lie, but there was no other way to wake you up!
How far would you go to wake somebody up?
To the very end. I don’t believe in half-hearted things. Anything I can do will be total. So if Deeksha says that I lie, she is perfectly right. There is nothing wrong in it. She is not condemning me, she is simply propagating me.
She told The Oregonian reporters that now she has to hide from your followers.
That is up to her. You have to ask her what she said and why she said it. How can I answer for her? I can answer for myself. About anything she has said about me I am ready to answer. But about anything else that she says, she is answerable, I am not.
If Shiva says that I am dishonest, he is right. To me, everything can be used as a device to wake people who are fast asleep, unconscious. To me it is just a game. If honesty helps, good; if it does not help, dishonesty will do.
And I love those people. They have left, the reason must be in themselves. If they say they left disappointed, that means they have some appointment with me? Certainly, unconsciously, they must be hoping that some expectations will be fulfilled by me. And I don’t fulfill anybody’s expectations.
Those who can remain with me without any expectations, only they are capable of understanding me, and capable of understanding the work that I am doing. If they feel disappointed, that simply means these people had come with a certain idea, hope, desire – and I fulfill nobody’s desire. I teach desirelessness. I don’t fulfill anybody’s hope.
You must have seen, the Christians have put a board outside my commune, “Those who enter here, drop all your hopes forever.” That’s perfectly true. They are doing my work!
Do they know that?
They don’t know – this is the difficulty. That’s why I call these people idiots!
So anybody who leaves me, leaves on his own responsibility. Anybody who joins with me, joins on his own responsibility. So if you see these people, tell them that as I don’t take anybody’s responsibility and I don’t promise you any hope, then the whole frustration is your own making. I am not a party to it. I have never claimed that I am an honest person. I have never claimed that I always speak the truth. Even under oath, you cannot manipulate me to say anything that I don’t want to say. I will say only the thing that I want to say.
So all these allegations – they think they are allegations, I don’t think so. By saying such things against me, they are simply showing that for the ten or eleven years they were with me, they could not understand a single word of mine. They are simply saying that they are retarded; their minds are not more than thirteen years of age. Their physical age may be anywhere, but their minds are stuck at thirteen. If they don’t believe me they should go to a psychoanalyst and let themselves be examined, to see what their mental age is.
Only people who have tremendous intelligence can stay with me. I am not Jesus. With Jesus, all those twelve uneducated, illiterate, fishermen, farmers, woodcutters, carpenters – those were his disciples. Not a single learned rabbi was convinced. That is very strange, because he was a Jew. He was fulfilling the long waiting of the Jews for the messiah. In fact, they should have rejoiced: “Our days of waiting are over and he has come!”
But not a single educated person was converted by Jesus. He could manage only with fishermen and woodcutters – uneducated, illiterate people. It was a kind of bribery and exploitation, because he promised them: “If you believe in me, I am going to take you to paradise.” Naturally, those fishermen, woodcutters, had never thought that they would ever be able to make it. Rabbis, great scholars, saints, prophets – they will enter into paradise: “And this guy is saying that if we just believe in him, we will be the first to enter! So what is the problem? We are not losing anything. He simply says, ‘Believe in me,’ – so we will believe.”
But no intelligent person can do that. With my people, you will find just the opposite. My commune must be the only place in the whole world with so much education. Almost everybody is a graduate from some university: most of them have master’s degrees, a few have PhD degrees, a few are D.Litts. They come from all professions – they are not fishermen and farmers.
The people who have left me – for example, Deeksha: she is illiterate. She would have fitted with Jesus perfectly well, but not with me. She could not understand me. She was a good cook – but being a good cook you don’t become enlightened. Shiva – what intelligence has he got? If it took him ten years sitting by my side – he was always sitting by my side – if it took him ten years to discover that I am a dishonest man, then do you think I have to answer anything?
You made your point! Let me go to the next question, if I may.
Go anywhere!
The Immigration Service of the United States is trying desperately to deport you. What would happen to you and to Rajneeshpuram if you had to go?
I never think of tomorrow. I am here right now, and we are enjoying! And for four years they have been trying desperately to deport me. If in four years they could not find a single reason to deport me, I don’t think in forty years they are going to find it. Four years are enough against a single individual. And a whole department is continuously working – their people are going around the world to find something so that I can be deported. They will find that this is the most difficult case that has come to them.
I am going to fight up to the Supreme Court.
But you have said during the press conference several weeks ago that you would go to Australia.
That was just to visit.
For how long?
And if I love it there, then there will be the same problem in Australia. Wherever I am, the problem is going to be the same. So I don’t care whether the INS in America is trying to deport me, or the INS in Australia is trying to deport me – what difference does it make to me?
But it would make a difference to Rajneeshpuram, wouldn't it?
Nobody can destroy Rajneeshpuram. If they succeed… In the first place, they cannot succeed, because I have applied [for permanent residence] on five grounds. They have only six grounds. I can do the sixth, too – they have six grounds for application. On five grounds, I am capable. They cannot deny me on any grounds. The sixth is marriage – I can do that, too, with as many women as they want!
That answers my question perfectly.
So it is just out of the question. They cannot deport me. They will simply go crazy, and crack, and retire – and I am going to be here!
And if – just for argument’s sake – if I decide to go, they cannot deport me. But if I decide to go, they cannot stop me, either. Let them know it. They are absolutely impotent, either way. If I decide to go, they cannot prevent me. And if I go, that does not mean that the commune will be in any way harmed or wounded.
I have prepared my people, so that without me they can exist as beautifully as they are existing with me, because I have not taken any responsibility. You should see the point: I have not taken any responsibility. I am not responsible for anything in the commune; I am just a guest. I am not even a member of the commune. I am not a sannyasin. I don’t have any responsibility, that they will miss me.
I don’t do anything. In fact, they have to do everything for me. If I am gone, they should really rejoice! My being here is a constant trouble for them. Once I am gone from here, nobody is going to bother them.
And I have my communes all around the world: without me they are running exactly the same way. So there is no problem at all. The INS or the American government, or any government, cannot create any problem for me. I can create a thousand and one problems for them.
The moment I decide to create problems, they will be at a loss to find how to tackle me. Up to now, I have not created any problem.
What problems would you create, for example?
I can create any problem. For example, I can go to the Supreme Court, that the whole American government is functioning against the American constitution. I stand for the American constitution, and the whole American government is against it. And I have grounds to fight: how they are exploiting and deceiving people.
The state government of Oregon is doing the same. They accepted this city, incorporated it; everything was done according to the constitution. For two years, the city was legal. We were getting the support of the state, the federal government supported the city – and after two years, suddenly the city became illegal. Then who is responsible? All those people who made this city legal should be immediately arrested and imprisoned! The governor is part of it, the attorney-general is part of it – what were these idiots doing for two years? They were giving state support, money, everything, to the city. What was the federal government doing? They were giving money to the city.
And idiots can go about everything in such a berserk way. I don’t think they have given much…
[to Sheela] How many dollars have you received from the federal government?

Sheela: About thirty-two thousand dollars last year.


Sheela: The federal government – I think it’s about that much.

Thirty-two thousand dollars?

Sheela: Something like that, yes.

That is nothing. I cannot even purchase one-third of a Rolls Royce.
And these idiots are now asking for the money back! In the first place, they did wrong: they gave that money to a city which was not legal. They are responsible for it. In the second place, they have the guts to ask for the money back. From whom? The city does not exist! You gave money to a nonexistent city – so go and ask the Holy Ghost if he knows anything about it!
The next question is something I simply relay to you, because I have no information…
Do anything – there is no problem.
The Prince of Hanover was one of your favorite sannyasins. He was very ill, and there is a rumor that you asked them to cut the oxygen to shorten his suffering. How do you feel about helping people to die in individual cases?
That rumor is absolutely wrong. Do you think if the rumor had any evidence, that the royal family of Germany would have remained silent? And the father of the prince, the mother of the prince, were present at the funeral in India. The brother of the prince was there, the wife of the prince was there, the daughter of the prince was there.
If the rumor had any validity, then the Prince of Hanover… His sannyas name was Vimalkirti. He was related to almost all the royalties of Europe. The Prince of Wales is his cousin-brother. His mother is the Princess of Greece: first she married the Prince of Denmark, and then she divorced him and married Vimalkirti’s father. His mother’s sister is a queen – perhaps in Spain or somewhere. All these royalties, against a poor man like me? Could they not do anything if the rumor had any evidence for it? Just their being silent is enough proof that all this is nonsense. So as far as Vimalkirti’s death is concerned, the rumor is simply a rumor.
So please don’t get confused with my idea, my approach, about the death of an individual. My way of life accepts that every individual has the birthright to get out of life if he wants. Death is not something that should be in the control of government, law; it is an individual freedom.
If I don’t want to live in this body anymore, nobody can prevent me. And in fact, even though all the governments and all the legal systems are against it, suicide goes on happening every day. And it is such an amusing phenomenon that if a person is caught red-handed committing suicide, then he is sentenced to death – because he was trying to commit suicide! What kind if lawmakers do we have? He was trying to commit suicide, now you are making arrangements for his death. He should have come to you in the first place, “I am going to commit suicide: please kill me. Why should I unnecessarily take the risk of falling from a tree, getting broken legs; hanging myself from the ceiling, feeling suffocated but not dying; jumping into a river, but because I know swimming, getting out of it? Why should I, or anybody, have all these difficulties?”
So as far as philosophical opinion is concerned, I am for the individual’s total freedom – death included. And it is the duty of the community to provide him with beautiful facilities for death. Why should one wait for old age and the troubles of old age, the degradation of old age, the rejection of the young people, the old person feeling constantly an unnecessary thing in the house, a burden to everybody? He is not capable of doing anything for them, and they have to do everything for him. All his companions are dead, his friends are dead. He goes to the same park where he used to go and sit with his friends; now he sits alone on the bench, nobody comes near him. Mostly he is sick in the bed.
If that person wants… It is simply ludicrous just to wait for death to come. And this death is going to be terrible, because he will be old, sick, and he will die, by and by, inch by inch – and we now have every scientific way to send him joyously into deep sleep forever.
If you and your society cannot give a man a beautiful life, at least you can arrange a beautiful death for him. If he wants it, it is his birthright. And anyway, anyone who wants to go out of life will find a way, so why unnecessarily create a legal system against it? He will find a way. The people who fail in committing suicide are really people who are hesitant – fifty-fifty. In fact, they have a split mind. One part says it is good to get out of life, another part shrinks back and feels afraid. This inner conflict is the cause of their failure. Otherwise, I don’t see that there is any way to prevent a man from dying. There are so many million possibilities all around.
So you cannot prevent him, and you think the penalty has to be an electric chair? Why could you not provide that beautiful electric chair before? The man would have said goodbye to his friends, enjoyed the best meal that he always wanted, but because of sickness and old age and diabetes he was not allowed. He can have beautiful ice cream; now there is no problem. He is going to the electric chair; he can have champagne. One day of absolute freedom, because there is no tomorrow anymore. So he need not worry about his blood sugar going high, his blood pressure going high, or getting drunk and doing something stupid. Who cares now? At least for one day give him total freedom and let him die. Help him.
Your medical hospitals, all the hospitals in the world, should have a beautiful place for those who want to die. He can be taught, even on the last day, how to be silent, how to relax – so when he is given the injection which will take him deeper and deeper into sleep he won’t fight it. Otherwise, he will be in suffering. This can be explained simply. He can practice beforehand, do a little rehearsal. And I am ready to provide one of my sannyasins to every hospital to teach meditation. And his room for death should be a temple, beautiful, with flowers and everything. He should go from this earth like a king – just resting, relaxing, and going forever into deep sleep.
When we can manage it, I don’t think we should prevent it. And anyway, it is going to help the world-population problem immensely. Because one thousand people are dying every day in Ethiopia. When one dies of hunger, it is a real torture; when one dies of thirst, it is a torture of days together. Why should they not be given an injection, which is simple, so they can relax and die – and be born in America! Because they all want… All over the world, the poor people think America is paradise on earth. So if they die with the idea of being born in America, great; let them die with the idea, and let them be born here.
I am perfectly in favor of freedom, and death is only one part of my whole idea of freedom.
The next question is something completely different. How do you spend your day?
Have I to spend it?
How do you spend it?
No: I am asking you, have I to spend it? I live it! Spending is not a right word. Life is not money, you don’t spend it; otherwise, one day you may go bankrupt. No – I live it. And I live it intensely.
Each moment of my life is a blessing. Whatever I am doing, I do to the very climax. I don’t believe in Gautam Buddha and his middle path. Gautam Buddha was teaching the middle path; I teach the extreme. If you are enjoying, what will the middle path be? Fifty-fifty: fifty percent enjoying, fifty percent in despair.
When I am taking my bath, I enjoy it as much as I have enjoyed my enlightenment – not in any way different. And one and a half hours in the morning, one and a half hours in the evening: three hours I am in the bathroom. And it is tremendously meditative, silent, beautiful, just to lie down in the hot water and play with bubbles. I don’t play anything else.
How important is sex for you?
Not at all. Just fun.
Something I realized, that while I have been here I haven't seen any babies. I've seen children, but not small children. Is there a reason behind it?
There is a reason, because these are intelligent people and they know what my approach is. I want the world’s population to be cut to one-fourth of what it is now. Only then can there be comfortable, joyous living for people. So my teaching is: don’t bring babies unnecessarily into this mad world. What are you going to give them in inheritance? The Third World War, nuclear weapons, AIDS? Don’t bring any babies into this world, it is already overpopulated. And when you can enjoy sex without giving birth to children, why unnecessarily get caught?
So in four years, not a single child has been born here. That’s why you don’t see small babies, and perhaps you never will. People ask me, “Then how are you going to increase the number of sannyasins?” Because they know only one way of increasing. That’s why the pope is against abortion, against birth control.
In Nigeria – just the other day I got the information – there is a club, highly prestigious, and only ladies who have given birth to ten or more children can become members. This is Nigeria. Soon it will be Ethiopia. All the governments around the world go on helping world population to grow by subtle methods. For example, if you have four children you will have less income tax to pay than when you have no children. This is strange. The person who has no children should be allowed complete freedom from income tax, and the person who has four children should pay four times more. Because he is burdening the earth, bringing unnecessary people who are not in any way going to live a life with joy. They will be hungry, they will be poor, they will be beggars, they will be sick.
I have my own way. In the first place, I have no desire to play the game called politics of numbers. But without giving birth to a single child, I can manage to have one million sannyasins with me. The secret is clear: we get hold of readymade people! Others do the whole dirty job, and finally we catch hold of their young people. Wherever young people are, they belong to us: sooner or later we are going to get hold of them. But we are not going to produce children. That is unnecessary.
Next question. You say that Rajneeshism is the only religion which can really free the people. Indian officials said two years ago – according to several newspapers here – that your organization does not resemble a religion. Does this hurt you personally, or do you feel any remorse about this?
No, there is no problem. In fact, that is what I am saying – that my people don’t resemble any people who have ever lived on the earth. They don’t resemble any old religion, nor do we want to be categorized with those insane theologies. It is a totally new phenomenon.
You said once that your religion, your beliefs, will die with you. Will you not ask anybody – if you feel that your time has come or you wish to depart from this earth, or die – will you not ask anybody to continue for you? Perhaps Sheela, perhaps another person, Laxmi perhaps, or an organization for you?
Nobody. It is up to them whatever they want to do when I am gone. Do you see the politics in the whole idea of successors? That even when I am gone, I will control the commune through Sheela, because I have trained Sheela, I can trust her, and she will remain in control. Then she prepares somebody else – and in a subtle way, though I am dead, I am controlling the living people. No, I cannot be so inhuman.
While I am here, rejoice with me. When I am gone, you are intelligent enough: whatever you want to do, do. I am not going to declare anybody as my successor, and I am not going to say to my people what they have to do when I am gone.
Just look at it from the other side. People only see one side, they always ask me, “When you are gone…” But you don’t ask me… When I am gone, you are gone as far as I am concerned; the world is dead. The moment I am dead, for me the whole world is dead. Now, who bothers about a dead world? Death is not one-sided, that only I am dying. I am disappearing to you, you are disappearing to me. It is equal – equal death on both sides.
And I have no desire to control. I don’t control even while I am living. But these people… For example: John the Baptist baptizes Jesus, initiates him as his successor. This is a subtle strategy. Then Jesus appoints these twelve apostles as his messengers. And out of all that, by and by, the popes come in, and for two thousand years these people have been torturing humanity. The whole responsibility goes on Jesus, or even on John the Baptist.
There is no need. I was not in the world one day, and the world has been here for millennia. Nobody asks me, “Osho, what have you done for the world when you were not here?” Nobody asks that question. It is as relevant as the other question. One is about the past, when I was not here; one is about the future, when I will not be here. But both are absolutely meaningless. I am here, that is the only place; and I am now, that is the only time. And I don’t care. I am not going to write a will that somebody should be my successor. There is no need; I give freedom, I don’t give bondage like the Catholic church.
In Spain, just a few days ago, the government legalized abortion – had to legalize it, because the population is destroying the whole economy of the country. Reluctantly they legalized abortion, and now the church is fighting against it. And Spain is a fanatical country; they are protesting and they are saying that anybody who goes for abortion will be expelled from the Catholic religion.
These people can’t see. Who are you to dominate the whole world and its troubles and miseries and sufferings? On the one hand you go on saying, “We are here for your salvation” and whatever you do is just to create more misery for people. I do not belong to this mafia gang of popes, shankaracharyas, Ayatollah Khomeinis. I do not belong to these people.
My approach is very simple: while I am here I will sing my song, I will have my dance. And when I am gone, I am gone.
In an interview with an American newspaper, your former ranch manager Bob Harvey said that he restored several mines on your request on the grounds of the ranch. What is in these mines?
That is absolutely wrong, because in those three and a half years while this man Bob Harvey was here, I was silent. I spoke only to Sheela. I never instructed him; that’s absolutely wrong, I was not speaking.
It is true that there is a possibility of mines on the land – it is 126 square miles of land, and it lies in the range which runs directly from Canada and through this property. There is every possibility that it may have oil, it may have gold, it may have silver, it may have copper. But we are not going to open those mines, for the simple reason that we love our people so much that we don’t want any hazard in their lives. If you start working on a gold mine, you have to use chemicals which finally pollute all your water – poisonous. In fact, one ranch just next to us also has gold mines. They were going to open them, and we had to go to the court because their water runs into our ranch. We will not allow our water to be polluted, and we have stopped them.
So there is no question of our people digging up all the metals or oil or whatsoever is available in the land. Legally the earth is ours to a depth of ten feet, and unless we allow anybody to penetrate those ten feet, nobody – not even the American government – can dig the gold underneath. And we know how to be rich, how to be wealthy. Who cares about the gold? Let it lie there.
This man is absolutely lying that I had instructed him. I had never talked with him. He had no business with me; he was a servant. He used to take care of this land before we came here. The past owners had put him as a servant here, and we accepted him for the time being, so that we could become acquainted with the whole territory. But that man cheated the commune. He was getting one thousand dollars per month from his owners. Our sannyasins are innocent people: he started going to the accountant every week to get one thousand dollars. Just a misunderstanding; the accountant thought perhaps his salary is one thousand per week. Now, four thousand dollars per month for a servant! Even a poor man like me cannot afford it!
And what qualifications did he have for four thousand dollars? Even a vice-chancellor of a university does not get that much. The chief justice of the Supreme Court in Oregon does not get that much. He had no qualification, nothing – just an ordinary servant. I had never given him any instructions. And because we are not interested at all in the mines, I don’t think anybody else has given him instructions to find out, because we are not interested at all. So many people have approached us, saying that that they know there are mines here, and they are researchers and they would like to research. We have refused them point blank. We don’t want any research on our ground, because basically we don’t want to create mines here.
Swami Prem Leeladhar was introduced in the Osho Times as a plastic surgeon who specializes in sex changes. Do you perform sex changes on the ranch here?
If somebody wants, it is part of their freedom. If somebody wants to change his sex, I don’t think there is anything immoral in it. You have lived as a man; you know what being a man is, and naturally every man is curious about women. In fact, it is said that nobody has yet been able to find the mystery of the woman. This is a perfectly good way – change your sex and be a woman, and find the mystery! There is no mystery.
But if you can live both sides of the coin in one lifetime, why not? I don’t see any problem in it. The sex change is such a simple thing. The difference between men and women is so small, almost negligible. It is just as if you pull your pocket out and it becomes man; you put the pocket back and it becomes woman. And Leeladhar is really a great plastic surgeon, one of the best. I only believe in the best. So if anybody wants…
There are consistent rumors that there is a huge arms cache in Rajneeshpuram. I've never seen such a peaceful place– people hugging each other on the street, smiling at each other, waving at each other. Why would you need so many weapons?
There are not so many weapons. We have a police force which is part of Oregon state. And for the police force – all the weapons and everything – Oregon state is responsible, not we. We have a commune security force because I have been attacked many times. Attempts on my life have been made; the last time in India, when a knife was thrown at me.
There were ten thousand sannyasins present. It was in a morning meeting, and because the police had some information, twenty police officers had reached the place a few minutes before the man threw the knife. So twenty police officers were eyewitnesses, ten thousand sannyasins were eyewitnesses, and yet the court freed that man without any punishment – because the politicians wanted him to be freed, because the religious leaders wanted him to be freed.
There is so much hostility in Oregon. But to me it is not a problem – in fact, I create it! But my people are concerned about me, and if somebody comes to assassinate me I will not hinder him. That is his freedom, I will not interfere with it. Although he is interfering with my life, even at the risk of my life I will not interfere with his freedom. But my people – why should I interfere with their freedom to protect me? So those few guards are here.
And what a strange thing that in a world which has gone nuclear, just those toy guns… Do you think we are going to attack America or the Soviet Union?
No, I don't think that!
But the Osho Times said that you kept six hundred Vietnam vets from…
That’s absolutely wrong.

Sheela: The Share-a-Home program.

That is a different thing. For three months we had a Share-a-Home program. Every year after our annual festival we have two or three million dollars surplus. We don’t need them, so we manage somehow to spend them. This year also we are going to create another program.
A Share-a-Home program again?
No, we never repeat anything. It is going to be far more dangerous. The Share-a-Home program did its work well. The whole of America was shaken, and we enjoyed. We were not interested in their election, we never voted in their election. Those Share-a-Home people were street people. Perhaps those six hundred Vietnam veterans may have come in those Share-a-Home people, otherwise we don’t have any in the commune. And if even someone is, we don’t know, because we don’t bother about what you have been doing, where you have been, who you are. Anybody who wants to be here, our hearts are open.
But we are going to do… Because surplus money is again there. Soon, next month, we are preparing for something that will shake the whole of America again – perhaps this time the whole world!
I have heard rumors that in the next few weeks…
Yes, it is going to happen!
Can you tell me a bit more?
I was wishing you would.
Just wait a few days. For a few days I want to keep the whole world in suspense, but when the curtain opens, it will be worth waiting for.
Not even a slight…
Not even my people know it!
You once declared death as the biggest orgasm of all times. And now we come back to what I wanted to ask about Jonestown: do you want to lead your disciples into this super orgasm, or do you fear another Jonestown among them?
No. This is the only place where Jonestown cannot happen. It can happen in the Vatican, it can happen in any Christian context. You should be aware of a few things. Both the world wars happened in a Christian context. Christianity has for centuries killed millions of people, burned people alive. It is a death-oriented religion, in the service of death. Poor Reverend Jones was simply doing the best he could.
This is the only place in the world where Jonestown cannot happen, because there is nobody who is a “reverend” here. As far as my idea about death is concerned: if a man can go meditatively into death then death is the greatest orgasm you can feel, because death is the separation of body and soul. It is just like when the physicist breaks the atom, there is such a great explosion. Just a single atom, which is not visible to the eyes, can destroy Hiroshima, Nagasaki.
When man’s body and his soul separate, if the man is alert and aware in that moment, he will see a tremendous explosion of joy, light, eternity, truth – whatever you want to call it. But most people die unconsciously. Before death they become unconscious, so they never come to know it.
My people are learning meditation. There is no need for them to be especially prepared for death. I am preparing them for life, and in that very preparation they are getting ready for death. Sometime they will have to die.
If I might interrupt you… If I understand you correctly, if separation between body and soul is such a tremendous experience, wouldn't it be desirable to achieve that?
No. Because before that, you have to learn how to be alert and meditative; otherwise you won’t get anything, no orgasmic experience, because the experiencer will be in a coma. The whole of life is a preparation for death, and you should be able to be so conscious in life that when you are making love there are not only two persons, but four – two persons making love, and two consciousnesses watching, witnessing. Or if you are walking on the road, you have to walk with watchfulness, alertness, so that you can see your own body walking.
Your whole life, you have to prepare: only then in death you may be able to retain consciousness. So it is not just separating the body and soul; otherwise everybody who is given the electric chair will enjoy an orgasm. Then Jesus being crucified would have enjoyed an orgasm. Then all those Jews – six million – whom Hitler put into gas chambers, he did really great religious work: he gave six million people orgasmic spiritual experiences, and still these Jews are against him!
No, just death won’t do. Between death and you, there must be full consciousness. Then only, can it become an orgasmic experience. Your whole life, you need to prepare, and then death is the climax of life. Then it is not the end of life, but the climax of life. The whole perspective changes.
There's something I don't understand when I read through some of your quotes. You said that everybody who will die in a twenty-four-mile radius of Rajneeshpuram will be automatically enlightened.
That is true.
Why is that?
Not everybody, there you are wrong. Only a sannyasin – not Oregonians. Only a sannyasin, dying within a twenty-five-mile radius, will become enlightened. This is not something new, it has been known in the East for thousands of years. Gautam Buddha said exactly the same thing. He said that within twelve cosas radius any bhikkhu – who is his sannyasin – dying, will become enlightened.
I was puzzled myself, that how… What is the mechanism? Twelve cosas are approximately twenty-five miles. But when I saw a few sannyasins dying around me and becoming enlightened… Their death was not a death. I could see it. When Vimalkirti died, we celebrated his death as it is celebrated for an enlightened man. On his face you could have seen the joy, the marks of that orgasmic experience through which he had gone. He was still radiant. The body was still somehow carrying the stamp of the experience. And now, many sannyasins have died in these fifteen years.
Then slowly, slowly, I became aware of why it happens. I am continuously in contact with my people. They love me so immensely that it is not a question of believing in me – it is a simple unconditional love. So whenever a sannyasin is dying, these twenty-five miles are something like an existential law – like the law of gravitation or the law of water evaporating at a hundred degrees. Nobody asks why. And the scientist has no answer; he can say only that that’s how it is. Never at ninety-nine degrees, never at a hundred and one degrees: at exactly a hundred degrees the water evaporates. But why has the water chosen a hundred degrees? It is simply a law.
Buddha has recorded these twenty-five miles, Mahavira has recorded these twenty-five miles – another founder of a great religion, Jainism, and a contemporary of Buddha. I have experienced it, and now I can feel that the energy of a commune… If it is a single enlightened person, then the radius will be only five miles at the most. But if it is a commune of thousands of sannyasins, the radius becomes twenty-five miles. Why? Nothing can be said about it. That’s how it happens.
And I don’t know… If the commune becomes bigger and still bigger, perhaps the radius will become bigger. I hope one day you will see here one hundred thousand sannyasins, and then I want to see how big the radius can be. Can we cover the whole of America? Our effort will be to cover the whole world. We have communes all over the world which will soon have the same effect. They need just one enlightened person amongst them, and then all the other sannyasins will be radiating, reflecting the energy field further and further away.
And when a sannyasin dies in this loving energy field, it is easier for him to be awake than otherwise. It is just as if you are sitting amongst a few people who are yawning and dozing: soon you will find yourself yawning and dozing. And you will be surprised – why are you doing it? Those people are creating a certain vibe. If you sit with people who are bored to death, soon you will feel a certain boredom entering you. You may sometimes have experienced being with someone and you feel as if you are nourished, and with someone else you feel as if you have been sucked. These are very simple experiences: everybody knows that with a certain person you gain energy, with a certain person you lose energy. People avoid these people because they are parasites.
The enlightened person alone has an energy field of five miles; but if he has a commune around him then there is at least a twenty-five-mile radius, ready to wake any sannyasin dying within it. Why it works, there is no way to say. It is just the same as other scientific laws – it is also a scientific law.
Your secretary, Sheela, has made tremendous waves here and in Australia recently on television and in press interviews. In those waves you've got some really bad press. Did Sheela act under your instructions or do you feel sometimes that she's gone too far?
No, she never goes as far as I want. She gets hit every time she comes back home, “This is not enough.”
You say that I, my people, my commune, got bad press. I want more of it – because I know certain laws: if we can create bad news, immediately existence balances it with good news. In existence, nothing can remain unbalanced. Soon the balance settles. Now, to create good news is very difficult, almost impossible. But to create bad news is very easy, very simple. And I know that the simplest should be followed: create bad news, and let existence balance it with good news. And you will see the truth of what I am saying. It has already started.
But then it would be easy: all you have to do is you have to sit down, have a press conference, and tell everybody there are human sacrifices on the ranch, there are whatever horror stories you can cook up!
We will do it! We will do.
I would like to have an exclusive on that!
We will do everything. But we always wait for the right time to do it. There is a saying that no news is good news. It is not complete: it has waited for me to complete it. It says: no news is good news. Its other part is: good news is no news.
Bad news is the only news there is. Create as much bad news as possible – don’t be worried.
Then do you create the bad news to wake up your disciples, or do you create the bad news…?
I create the bad news to wake up my disciples, and also to wake up those who are not my disciples, but will have to become my disciples sooner or later – the sooner the better.
Sheela is doing good, but she can do better.
I would like to be present!
But let me just go on with this point a bit…
The last question.
You have been quoted as saying, “When this is all over, I will buy myself a dark suit, go to the bar, and buy a cigar.” Will you go and buy yourself a dark suit?
Soon. Just like Jesus said, “Soon.”

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