Rajneesh - Biography - Travels and Return To Pune: 1985–1990

Travels and Return To Pune: 1985–1990

Following his exit from the U.S., Osho returned to India, landing in Delhi on 17 November 1985. He was given a hero's welcome by his Indian disciples and denounced the United States, saying the world must "put the monster America in its place" and that "Either America must be hushed up or America will be the end of the world." He then stayed for six weeks in Himachal Pradesh. When non-Indians in his party had their visas revoked, he moved on to Kathmandu, Nepal, and then, a few weeks later, to Crete. Arrested after a few days by the KYP, he flew to Geneva, then to Stockholm and to Heathrow, but was in each case refused entry. Next Canada refused landing permission, so his plane returned to Shannon airport, Ireland, to refuel. There he was allowed to stay for two weeks, at a hotel in Limerick, on condition that he did not go out or give talks. He had been granted a Uruguayan identity card, one-year provisional residency and a possibility of permanent residency, so the party set out, stopping at Madrid, where the plane was surrounded by the Guardia Civil. He was allowed to spend one night at Dakar, then continued to Recife and Montevideo. In Uruguay, the group moved to a house at Punta del Este where Osho began speaking publicly until 19 June, after which he was "invited to leave" for no official reason. A two-week visa was arranged for Jamaica but on arrival in Kingston police gave the group 12 hours to leave. Refuelling in Gander and in Madrid, Osho returned to Bombay, India, on 30 July 1986.

In January 1987, Osho returned to the ashram in Poona, where he held evening discourses each day, except when interrupted by intermittent ill health. Publishing and therapy resumed and the ashram underwent expansion, now as a "Multiversity" where therapy was to function as a bridge to meditation. Osho devised new "meditation therapy" methods such as the "Mystic Rose" and began to lead meditations in his discourses after a gap of more than ten years. His western disciples formed no large communes, mostly preferring ordinary independent living. Red/orange dress and the mala were largely abandoned, having been optional since 1985. The wearing of maroon robes—only while on ashram premises—was reintroduced in summer 1989, along with white robes worn for evening meditation and black robes for group-leaders.

In November 1987, Osho expressed his belief that his deteriorating health (nausea, fatigue, pain in extremities and lack of resistance to infection) was due to poisoning by the U.S. authorities while in prison. His doctors and former attorney, Philip J. Toelkes (Swami Prem Niren), hypothesised radiation and thallium poisoning, from a deliberately contaminated mattress, since his symptoms were concentrated on the right side of his body, but presented no hard evidence. U.S. attorney Charles H. Hunter described this as "complete fiction", while others suggested the symptoms were caused by HIV infection or diabetes and chronic stress.

From early 1988, Osho's discourses focused exclusively on Zen. In late December, he said he no longer wished to be referred to as "Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh", and in February 1989 took the name "Osho Rajneesh", shortened to "Osho" in September. His health continued to weaken. He delivered his last public discourse in April 1989, from then on simply sitting in silence with his followers. Shortly before his death, Osho suggested that one or more audience members at evening meetings (now referred to as the White Robe Brotherhood) were subjecting him to some form of evil magic. A search for the perpetrators was undertaken, but none could be found.

Osho died on 19 January 1990, aged 58, reportedly of heart failure. His ashes were placed in his newly built bedroom in Lao Tzu House at the Poona ashram. The epitaph reads, "OSHO. Never Born, Never Died. Only Visited this Planet Earth between 11 Dec 1931 – 19 Jan 1990."

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