Thursday, January 8, 2015

What Is and Is Not Spiritual: A Series of Mini-Blogs



#1

I love Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh. (He said a lot of amazing things, much of it offensive to a lot of people.) He’s been a part of our practice right from the beginning, his primary contribution usually being the opening to a conversation about money and spirituality. I’ve always introduced him as the owner of 80 Rolls Royces, but it turns out there were 93. Eighty Rolls Royces made people crazy; what’s 13 more!

I’m hoping we can take 2015 to look deeply and closely at all that lies behind the outrage and judgment that roars up when people are confronted with something like a spiritual teacher owning 93 Rolls Royces. (It does seem a bit over the top, doesn’t it? I suspect he could have accomplished the same result with just one Rolls Royce.)

A little about the format here before we go on. If you’d like to approach these blogs as a mini-workshop, I invite you to stop to consider the preceding paragraph, and then jot down your answers to the following questions.

1) Let’s forget about the 93 number and just go with: What arises when you consider a spiritual person owning a Rolls Royce? Take your time to let all the responses come in….
2) If a spiritual person owns a car, what sort of car should it be? Look closely…
3) Do you have a belief that money corrupts, and that the only way to remain “pure” is not to have anything to do with it? Again, take just a moment to consider whether or not you believe that… 
4) What is your reaction when yet another scandal breaks, revealing that a religious leader has been personally benefiting from their “ministry”? That donations are paying for a lavish lifestyle? Take another moment to write down additional insights…

Now, consider:
Do you see a connection between your answers to these questions and what you’re allowed to have and what you’re not allowed to have?

It seems that many people are conditioned to believe that spirituality and poverty go together. Not just that people who take a vow of poverty should be poor, but that all spiritual people should be poor. To paraphrase Rajneesh, people live in such an intolerably impoverished mindset that they console themselves by making that mindset the spiritually correct way to think.

If you want to talk about what you’re seeing, please call Open Air on January 13.

Gasshō


11 comments:

  1. Thank you Cheri for the opportunity to become aware of my associations with money. When I think of a spiritual person with 93 Rolls Royce's, a 600 pound person comes to mind. I am overweight and am working on becoming more mindful of the ways in which I eat. I don't think the 93 rolls royce's or the extra pounds makes someone less spiritual, but I do think it points to an addiction and/or other difficulty that they may be struggling with or have yet to become aware of. You can only drive 1 car at a time and you don't need 6000 calories a day to live. I don't think poverty is more spiritual, but I think waste is not mindful. I will think about calling in on Tuesday to discuss more.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is intended to be helpful...Watching Dr Glidden, he indicated that we are lacking proper nutrition, which causes us to overeat. He discourages exercise, until we are properly nourished. Looking into taking in proper daily nutrition..about 90 different elements. Throw out addiction, emotion, guilt as its not working anyways right? Avoid the 12 foods that are bad for you. See http://nomdforme.com/proper-diet/the-12-bad-foods-dr-glidden/ Try the regimen for 3 months then see how well you do.

      Delete
  2. This article just about blew my mind apart.
    Spirituality has no mandates. Precepts can help us grow in spirituality -- or get in the way.
    I am looking forward to examining my beliefs.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for sharing that Aleks - I love that! Precepts can help us grow or get in the way. Wow! Thank you.

      Delete
  3. In a guidance appointment in which I was talking about my (ekc's?) uneasiness around the fact that I live in a developing country and am not poor, Cheri told me "poor people have conditiong too". Which came a surprise because ego wanted me to see them all as Saint Francises (and all non poor people, like me, as doomed to suffering). Thought it might be interesting to share this. Gassho

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much for sharing this Isotta. I or "I" have had the same issue and that had not really occurred to me. I appreciate hearing that guidance.

      Delete
  4. Regarding the luxury cars and spirituality- I believe a spiritual teacher should live comfortably, and be motivated by compassion for others. I keep coming back to how much benefit the Africa project could derive from the value of those cars. I don't think anyone should live in poverty, be they spiritual teachers, practitioners or children in Africa. I also find myself thinking about poverty of spirit as opposed to material poverty. Can I find joy and appreciate the abundance that life offers in every moment, regardless of material circumstances?

    Apart from the 93 Rolls Royces, I'm more troubled by other aspects about Bhagwan. For example, his stated views on homesexuality: "As a homosexual you are not even a human being, what to say about a second-class citizen? You have fallen from dignity. I have great love for you, but that does not mean that I will support your perversion."
    (I'm not gay myself.)


    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Another viewpoint of the gayness from Osho...

      http://oshotimes.blog.osho.com/2012/06/same-sex-relationships/

      Delete
  5. What has happened to your spiritual app? Sorry to be so blunt but I'm concerned, I can no longer share the teachings I've learned without it

    ReplyDelete
  6. I share your admiration of Osho. Unless you have consumed a lot of the transcripts of his speeches, out of context, a paragraph here and there is seriously misconstrued. Osho's primary purpose was to let you reveal the authentic you to you. Devoid of masks, inherited conditioning and conformity. Who could we be if our database of experiences, reactions, decisions were truly ours and not of politicians, society, religion, conformity. Rolls Royces were merely a symbol of wealth to refute the idea that spiritualists, mystics, masters need not be poor and that material wealth did not matter, but it got the attention of materialists to make his point. He pushed the concept of a new human, Zorba the Buddha, fun, but yet compassionate, melting East and West into one dancing, celebrating human being. I'm close to being a millionaire, can see the path to being a billionaire, but as I look at the value of that vs value of bliss, ecstacy and Oneness, I choose to look for the value I can bring to people around me, in helping them out of their suffering. Our egos are unruly dogs that needing taming. They drag our spirit in and out of the present. We live in duality. Whatever we say after I AM we manifest. But words and sight, dont reveal the unseen and the unknown and that is where we move to as we age until we are born through death into the indescrible. Loss of sight, loss of speech, loss of desire removes us from our limited senses to infinite bliss. Alertness, awareness, watchfulness must be our daily companions. A continued focus on how we are choosing suffering as a way of life is necessary as a test of the human condition. Our bodies are positively and negatively charged so duality is built in as a learning device. We are guided divinely through experiences so that we can make a better choice to be the bamboo through which infinite love can nourish us as it flows through us into humanity. Everything we are, everything we have comes with its own baggage, requires maintenance. Its a great cosmic joke of highs and lows, like a great tasting and smelling meal eventually needs to be managed into a hopefully pleasant bowel movement. Some people worship a book with blank pages. Our book of life has limited pages. What to write? What to create? What to manifest? Osho teaches to not struggle...enjoy everything..be alert, be aware, be watchful. Have the blank sheet and the pen and your hand ready. Just wait for the universe to write your life through you...Celebrate...Love...Create

    ReplyDelete