What do you think of Osho?

May 15, 2015 | Acharya Prashant

Question: Acharya Ji, what do you think of Osho?

Acharya Prashant: In the spiritual dimension, the last century was exceptionally rich with the presence of some towering beings. As the womb of religion, it was natural that most of them emanated from the East: Raman Maharishi, J.Krishnamurti, Osho, Nisargadatta, and many others. Also, there were a significant number of Western teachers who brought Zen to US and Europe.

While a spiritual master deals with the ineffable, the formless, and leaves his audience with nothing but silence, each teacher has his own distinct style and methods. Maharishi would strike all into silence with his single-pointed emphasis on the mind as the only appearance, and the Self as the only Reality. Krishnamurti attacked dogma and methods and restored the glory of the individual quest for Truth. Nisargadatta would be pithy and dismiss all problems as the nonsense of the mind. Millions benefited from the touch of these masters. A world reeling under the violence of wars, and disillusioned by the subsequent rebuilding and consumerism, was shown a different way of living. The impact of these masters was felt in all areas of human activity: religion, arts, culture, politics, even science, and technology. The Beat generation, the counterculture, the back-to-nature movements, yoga, the mainstreaming of oriental texts, the rejection of blatant materialistic values as part of the democratic discourse, the acceptance in the economics of human development as something distinct and far beyond economic growth, the dignified rise in the West of Zen as a ‘philosophy of mind’ rather than a religion – the effects were, and are being, felt in every area. Spirituality, as very different from the refractory beliefs of religion, was attempted to be given its due place. Today religion might be on the decline and atheism might be on the rise, but it is popular and worthy to be called spiritual. It is in vogue for scientists to wax eloquent on the convergence between science and spirituality, between phenomenon and consciousness. Today’s movements against climate change, against war, against religious intolerance, movements for a more egalitarian world, for rights of all kinds of minorities, for animal rights, for veganism, for sustainable development, for denuclearization and demilitarisation, all find their support, if not their roots, in some way from the spiritual movements of the last century and beyond.


Acharya Prashant is an emerging champion of socio-spiritual awakening in the world today. An alumnus of IIT-Delhi and IIM-Ahmedabad, and a former Civil Services officer, Acharya Prashant is an acclaimed Speaker, Vedanta Teacher and author of over 50 books. Apart from that he wears various hats: a veganism promoter, an environmental activist, a science activist, a campaigner against superstition, and a champion of essential human freedom. Know More