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Books > History > Don’t Kill Him (The Story of My Life with Bhagwan Rajneesh)
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Don’t Kill Him (The Story of My Life with Bhagwan Rajneesh)
Don’t Kill Him (The Story of My Life with Bhagwan Rajneesh)
Description

About the Book

 

As His personal secretary between 1981 and 1985, and the second-in-command of His organization, Ma Anand Sheela enjoyed an enviably close relationship with Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh.

Bhagwan called upon her when He wanted to discuss personal issues, crucial administrative matters, run minor errands, and to even place an order for a new Rolls-Royce. Ma Sheela was His confidante, His closest aide, the person He trusted more than anyone else. She ruled the entire commune under His guidance . until differences crept up.

 

What followed next, soon became part of Bhagwan's infamous history, as after years of loyal service, Ma Sheela resigned from her position, left the commune, and fled to Europe with fellow members. An infuriated Rajneesh wasted no time in accusing her of planning a bio-terror attack, conspiring to murder important public officials, and running away with fifty-five million dollars. Ma Sheela pled guilty to some of the charges in court and spent thirty-nine months in prison.

 

Now, almost two decades later, Ma Sheela, still in love with Bhagwan and His teachings, finally tells her side of the story, claiming that the truth was very different, and sheds light on that part of Bhagwan's life which has so far been shrouded in a cover of secrecy and darkness.

 

Prologue

 

This is a book about my life and work with Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh. My loving father encouraged me to write it. It documents my experiences, my observations, my feelings and my life while I was working with Bhagwan as His personal secretary.

 

I hope this book serves to fill in gaps created by Bhagwan's disciples, who have so far eliminated all references to the period in Oregon from His biographies. To fully understand the man that Bhagwan was, it is important to examine His actions honestly and from all dimensions. As His secretary and a confidant carried out His every wish and command, I had the opportunity to closely observe His actions as well as the motives behind them. I was able to understand His grand vision and to see His immense talent, drive and awesome power. I also witnessed His manipulative side, His vengefulness, and His failings as an ordinary human being.

 

During my years with Bhagwan, I learned that the greatest of gurus can also be fallible human beings. I learned to separate their personality traits from their immense charisma and the power of their teachings. I also learned not to give up my integrity in the face of tremendous hardships, false accusations, and months of wrongful incarceration. I learned how to come through the worst nightmares without regrets, ill will, or blame.

 

The book begins on the day I decided to resign as Bhagwan's secretary and the operating head of the commune in Oregon. The first few chapters deal with the period immediately following my departure from Rajneeshpuram and the beginning of the legal nightmare manufactured by false accusations and trumped-up charges levelled against me by Bhagwan and His followers after my resignation. These were some of the most difficult and trying days of my life. I had never thought even in the worst of nightmares that I would have to live almost like a fugitive for doing so honestly and dedicatedly what I thought was my life's work. However, I did not have any regrets then, and I do not have any regrets now about this period, neither do I have' any ill will towards any of the people responsible for this harrowing experience. I accept it as something that Existence wanted me "to experience.

 

In part two, I pick up the thread from the beginning when I joined Bhagwan's movement around 1972. I had just turned twenty and had recently married my first husband Marc Silverman, who was later renamed Swami Prem Chinmaya by Bhagwan. In creating a new world of His vision, Bhagwan gave new names to people and places in order to erase their history and give them a completely new identity and meaning. In this latter part, I describe my experiences as a young Sannyasin. I detail how I got the opportunity to be the personal secretary of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh in a short time, how I had the Prologue

good fortune of having the chance of a lifetime to build an entire commune from ground up in Oregon-where over five thousand Sannyasins later worked together to bring Bhagwan's vision to reality-and how Bhagwan destroyed it in a fit of rage after I resigned from His service in the year 1985.

 

I saw Bhagwan extremely charismatic, brilliant, inspiring, powerful, and loving, and I also saw Him being ridiculously manipulative, vengeful, self-serving and hurtful. He disregarded all laws, moralities, ethics, and legalities of every community, society, and nation because He wanted to create a society of His own vision with its own laws and rules. I witnessed how He was at the top of His game in Bombay and Poona, how He gave shape to His commune, ho; He worked with people, how He manipulated the media by generating controversies, and what His grand vision was. I also observed His decline in Oregon which began with His dependence on painkillers and other drugs, and which ended with the ultimate downfall and dissolution of the commune in Oregon.

 

I loved Bhagwan and trusted Him implicitly, blindly. I've a deep and abiding respect for His teachings and remain His loving devotee even to this day. I remain grateful for the opportunities that He gave me, opportunities to work so closely with Him and learn so much from Him. I try to live by the lessons I learned from Him and the values He taught me. I urge the readers to dwell not on the scandalous and juicy tidbits of my story but on how my love for Bhagwan and His teachings helped me face all big and small challenges that came my way in life.

 

I'm also very grateful to my parents for their love and trust that sustained me through the most difficult period of my life and for their encouragement thereafter to live life in love and service. I'm particularly indebted to my father who introduced me to Bhagwan and His teachings. Since coming out of the US prisons, for the last twenty years of my life, I have dedicated myself to the memory of my parents through caring for the mentally, psychologically, and physically handicapped in my two nursing homes located in the outskirts of Basel, Switzerland. The nursing homes have been named after them as Matrusaden (Mother's Home) and Bapusaden (Father's Home). I would also like to express my gratitude to my family, particularly my sisters and brothers who have supported me unconditionally throughout life, and to my late husband Dipo (real name Urs Birnstiel; renamed Swami Prem Dipo by Bhagwan).

 

Finally, a word about my use of the words "love" and "Existence." Often when I've said that I fell in love with Bhagwan or that He is my eternal lover, I have been asked to define this love. What I felt for Him cannot be explained. Whatever it was, it was complete and whole. This feeling had no boundaries, no limits. It was the opening of an infinite horizon. Everything melted into these feelings and these feelings melted into everything. Freedom was their basis, and freedom was their end. Sex did not have to do anything with this feeling of love, but then I would not have refused sex if He had demanded it. Our every glance, every touch was devoid of sexuality, yet it was totally filled with passion. Anything and everything that happened out of this feeling of love was absolutely all right, perfect. This love had its own clarity and awareness, as one cannot experience in ordinary life. It opened a deep understanding in me. It was the highest state of my being. It consumed me. This love is still there. It is not of this world. I cannot stop it. It is just there. It is forever-a plan of Existence (or Nature or Universe or Brahmaan or whatever you may call it), and I am proud and grateful to be part of this plan. I will not exchange this love for anything in the world. I can even go back to jail for it. It knows no end. And I don't know when it began.

 

Contents

 

Prologue

13

ONE

19

The Man with the Inexplicable Life

21

1.

My Khidr had spoken

25

2.

The Odyssey begins

42

3.

From the Black Forest to German prisons

58

4.

Contrast between German and American prison systems

62

5.

My Experiences with the US legal system

74

6.

The nightmare continues

87

7.

Onwards to Switzerland

94

8.

A new beginning in Switzerland

96

TWO

109

9.

How it all began

111

10.

Bhagwan and me: A journey begins

127

11.

Birth of the Rajneesh Ashram in Poona

139

12.

Implementing Bhagwan's vision of a new man

144

13.

The exploitation of Sannyasins begins

153

14.

Progress in Poona

169

15.

From hypnotic discourses to Bhagwan's silence

182

16.

Housefull

186

17.

In search of a new land

191

18.

A castle transforms into a meditation centre

210

19.

Big Muddy Ranch, Oregon

217

20.

Bhagwan's loving surprises

224

21.

Brick by brick: Building Rajneeshpuram for Bhagwan's arrival

228

22.

Security problems in this remote and inhospitable part of Oregon

239

23.

Bhagwan: a saint or just an ordinary man?

250

24.

What is the antidote for Bhagwan's boredom? Thirty new Rolls-Royces

256

25.

Meet the Fourth Estate's puppet and puppeteer

267

26.

Why democracy does not work

272

27.

The final curtain falls

276

28.

Don't Kill Him: Respect His teachings and His life

283

MEMORIES

287

Note from the German Translator,

 

Susanna Christinck

303

Chronology

309

 

Don’t Kill Him (The Story of My Life with Bhagwan Rajneesh)

Item Code:
NAF702
Cover:
Paperback
Edition:
2012
ISBN:
9788172344443
Language:
English
Size:
7.5 inch X 5 inch
Pages:
312
Other Details:
Weight of the Book: 255 gms
Price:
$20.00   Shipping Free
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About the Book

 

As His personal secretary between 1981 and 1985, and the second-in-command of His organization, Ma Anand Sheela enjoyed an enviably close relationship with Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh.

Bhagwan called upon her when He wanted to discuss personal issues, crucial administrative matters, run minor errands, and to even place an order for a new Rolls-Royce. Ma Sheela was His confidante, His closest aide, the person He trusted more than anyone else. She ruled the entire commune under His guidance . until differences crept up.

 

What followed next, soon became part of Bhagwan's infamous history, as after years of loyal service, Ma Sheela resigned from her position, left the commune, and fled to Europe with fellow members. An infuriated Rajneesh wasted no time in accusing her of planning a bio-terror attack, conspiring to murder important public officials, and running away with fifty-five million dollars. Ma Sheela pled guilty to some of the charges in court and spent thirty-nine months in prison.

 

Now, almost two decades later, Ma Sheela, still in love with Bhagwan and His teachings, finally tells her side of the story, claiming that the truth was very different, and sheds light on that part of Bhagwan's life which has so far been shrouded in a cover of secrecy and darkness.

 

Prologue

 

This is a book about my life and work with Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh. My loving father encouraged me to write it. It documents my experiences, my observations, my feelings and my life while I was working with Bhagwan as His personal secretary.

 

I hope this book serves to fill in gaps created by Bhagwan's disciples, who have so far eliminated all references to the period in Oregon from His biographies. To fully understand the man that Bhagwan was, it is important to examine His actions honestly and from all dimensions. As His secretary and a confidant carried out His every wish and command, I had the opportunity to closely observe His actions as well as the motives behind them. I was able to understand His grand vision and to see His immense talent, drive and awesome power. I also witnessed His manipulative side, His vengefulness, and His failings as an ordinary human being.

 

During my years with Bhagwan, I learned that the greatest of gurus can also be fallible human beings. I learned to separate their personality traits from their immense charisma and the power of their teachings. I also learned not to give up my integrity in the face of tremendous hardships, false accusations, and months of wrongful incarceration. I learned how to come through the worst nightmares without regrets, ill will, or blame.

 

The book begins on the day I decided to resign as Bhagwan's secretary and the operating head of the commune in Oregon. The first few chapters deal with the period immediately following my departure from Rajneeshpuram and the beginning of the legal nightmare manufactured by false accusations and trumped-up charges levelled against me by Bhagwan and His followers after my resignation. These were some of the most difficult and trying days of my life. I had never thought even in the worst of nightmares that I would have to live almost like a fugitive for doing so honestly and dedicatedly what I thought was my life's work. However, I did not have any regrets then, and I do not have any regrets now about this period, neither do I have' any ill will towards any of the people responsible for this harrowing experience. I accept it as something that Existence wanted me "to experience.

 

In part two, I pick up the thread from the beginning when I joined Bhagwan's movement around 1972. I had just turned twenty and had recently married my first husband Marc Silverman, who was later renamed Swami Prem Chinmaya by Bhagwan. In creating a new world of His vision, Bhagwan gave new names to people and places in order to erase their history and give them a completely new identity and meaning. In this latter part, I describe my experiences as a young Sannyasin. I detail how I got the opportunity to be the personal secretary of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh in a short time, how I had the Prologue

good fortune of having the chance of a lifetime to build an entire commune from ground up in Oregon-where over five thousand Sannyasins later worked together to bring Bhagwan's vision to reality-and how Bhagwan destroyed it in a fit of rage after I resigned from His service in the year 1985.

 

I saw Bhagwan extremely charismatic, brilliant, inspiring, powerful, and loving, and I also saw Him being ridiculously manipulative, vengeful, self-serving and hurtful. He disregarded all laws, moralities, ethics, and legalities of every community, society, and nation because He wanted to create a society of His own vision with its own laws and rules. I witnessed how He was at the top of His game in Bombay and Poona, how He gave shape to His commune, ho; He worked with people, how He manipulated the media by generating controversies, and what His grand vision was. I also observed His decline in Oregon which began with His dependence on painkillers and other drugs, and which ended with the ultimate downfall and dissolution of the commune in Oregon.

 

I loved Bhagwan and trusted Him implicitly, blindly. I've a deep and abiding respect for His teachings and remain His loving devotee even to this day. I remain grateful for the opportunities that He gave me, opportunities to work so closely with Him and learn so much from Him. I try to live by the lessons I learned from Him and the values He taught me. I urge the readers to dwell not on the scandalous and juicy tidbits of my story but on how my love for Bhagwan and His teachings helped me face all big and small challenges that came my way in life.

 

I'm also very grateful to my parents for their love and trust that sustained me through the most difficult period of my life and for their encouragement thereafter to live life in love and service. I'm particularly indebted to my father who introduced me to Bhagwan and His teachings. Since coming out of the US prisons, for the last twenty years of my life, I have dedicated myself to the memory of my parents through caring for the mentally, psychologically, and physically handicapped in my two nursing homes located in the outskirts of Basel, Switzerland. The nursing homes have been named after them as Matrusaden (Mother's Home) and Bapusaden (Father's Home). I would also like to express my gratitude to my family, particularly my sisters and brothers who have supported me unconditionally throughout life, and to my late husband Dipo (real name Urs Birnstiel; renamed Swami Prem Dipo by Bhagwan).

 

Finally, a word about my use of the words "love" and "Existence." Often when I've said that I fell in love with Bhagwan or that He is my eternal lover, I have been asked to define this love. What I felt for Him cannot be explained. Whatever it was, it was complete and whole. This feeling had no boundaries, no limits. It was the opening of an infinite horizon. Everything melted into these feelings and these feelings melted into everything. Freedom was their basis, and freedom was their end. Sex did not have to do anything with this feeling of love, but then I would not have refused sex if He had demanded it. Our every glance, every touch was devoid of sexuality, yet it was totally filled with passion. Anything and everything that happened out of this feeling of love was absolutely all right, perfect. This love had its own clarity and awareness, as one cannot experience in ordinary life. It opened a deep understanding in me. It was the highest state of my being. It consumed me. This love is still there. It is not of this world. I cannot stop it. It is just there. It is forever-a plan of Existence (or Nature or Universe or Brahmaan or whatever you may call it), and I am proud and grateful to be part of this plan. I will not exchange this love for anything in the world. I can even go back to jail for it. It knows no end. And I don't know when it began.

 

Contents

 

Prologue

13

ONE

19

The Man with the Inexplicable Life

21

1.

My Khidr had spoken

25

2.

The Odyssey begins

42

3.

From the Black Forest to German prisons

58

4.

Contrast between German and American prison systems

62

5.

My Experiences with the US legal system

74

6.

The nightmare continues

87

7.

Onwards to Switzerland

94

8.

A new beginning in Switzerland

96

TWO

109

9.

How it all began

111

10.

Bhagwan and me: A journey begins

127

11.

Birth of the Rajneesh Ashram in Poona

139

12.

Implementing Bhagwan's vision of a new man

144

13.

The exploitation of Sannyasins begins

153

14.

Progress in Poona

169

15.

From hypnotic discourses to Bhagwan's silence

182

16.

Housefull

186

17.

In search of a new land

191

18.

A castle transforms into a meditation centre

210

19.

Big Muddy Ranch, Oregon

217

20.

Bhagwan's loving surprises

224

21.

Brick by brick: Building Rajneeshpuram for Bhagwan's arrival

228

22.

Security problems in this remote and inhospitable part of Oregon

239

23.

Bhagwan: a saint or just an ordinary man?

250

24.

What is the antidote for Bhagwan's boredom? Thirty new Rolls-Royces

256

25.

Meet the Fourth Estate's puppet and puppeteer

267

26.

Why democracy does not work

272

27.

The final curtain falls

276

28.

Don't Kill Him: Respect His teachings and His life

283

MEMORIES

287

Note from the German Translator,

 

Susanna Christinck

303

Chronology

309

 

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