Written Testimonials by Professionals Around the World Who Met Osho or Studied His Books
The texts shown here are excerpted from letters these professionals wrote to the US Government in favour of Osho’s immigration application.
They are roughly divided into the following categories:
‘[Osho] is ‘the foremost philosopher and spiritual leader alive today. His discourses cover, interpret, and enliven aspects of Christianity, Buddhism, Judaism, Islam, and Zen. His books explain the meaning of existence in contemporary times. His commentary and analysis illuminate the great philosophical traditions of Greek philosophers such as Socrates, Pythagoras, and scientists like Albert Einstein from the West, and Confucius, Lao Tzu and Buddha from the East.
‘In modern times, particularly in Western societies, materialism, the fast pace of life, transiency of relationship and widespread litigation have become a part of daily existence. The technological advances in fields such as nuclear energy and biomedicine have made our lives comfortable, but have also created unforeseen problems such as the threat of nuclear holocaust, keeping people alive on machines, etc., thus creating anxiety and making our daily life uncomfortable. In such trying times the books of [Osho] bring a fresh perspective to the meaning of life and the condition of modern man. He provides the awareness of the realities of the spiritual world, and brings contentment and peace of mind to the individual.’
‘[Osho] has made a significant contribution to the letters and sciences and we are glad to have discovered him. He has greatly enriched our lives and our work, as well as that of our contemporaries.’ Professor Dr. 0.A. Bushnell, Emeritus Professor of Medical Microbiology and Tropical Medicine and History of Medicine at the University of Hawaii
Psychologists refer to the unique contribution to their world of Osho’s psychology of the buddhas, or ‘the third psychology’:
‘In his religious discourses, he has shown an insight into the working of the human mind far deeper than most professionals that I have met in my career. He has an intimate knowledge of Western psychology, whether of the psychoanalytic, behavioristic or humanistic schools, and has himself propounded at length his own psychology of the buddhas, which transcends all of these (see particularly The Discipline of Transcendence in four volumes, The Book of the Books in six volumes, and Philosophia Perennis in two volumes). He has also shown an exceptional ability as a practicing psychologist in his dealings with visitors and disciples who bring their problems to him. The record of these interviews is also published in book form and bears witness to his psychological insight and skill as a therapist. ‘His ability in this area is simply greater than any persons I have come across in the last twenty years that I have been involved with psychology.’ Nigel D. W. Armistead, Ph.D., author of Reconstructing Social Psychiatry and former Lecturer in Social Psychiatry at the University of Sheffield , UK.
Dr. Rudolph Wormser, Professor at the Max Planck Institut fur Psychopathologie & Psychotherapie, compares Osho’s contribution to psychology with Einstein’s contribution to physics: ‘The teachings of [Osho] in the field of psychology not only meet the standards of modern scientific psychology, but go much further and surpass anything else available in the world. Not only does he understand profoundly all the existing schools of scientific psychology, e.g. behaviorism, psychoanalysis, gestalt psychology, all of which he resumes in a comprehensive view, but also he founded a new kind of psychology called the third psychology. To understand the progress and change the subject of scientific psychology has gone through by the teachings of [Osho], it can only be compared to the progress physics has gone through by the work of Albert Einstein, or the theory of scientific measurement changed through Werner Heisenberg’s discovery of the principle of indeterminism.’
Guy L. Claxton, M.A. (Camb), D. Phil. (Oxon), Lecturer in Psychology of Education at the University of London, considers Osho ‘the most important and successful teacher in the domain of experience and debate that lies at the intersection of psychology, psychotherapy, philosophy and religion’. Mr. Claxton, author of The Little Ed Book, Cognitive Psychology: New Directions, Wholly Human: Western and Eastern Visions of the Self and its Perfections and Live and Learn: Growth and Change in Everyday Life, explains: ‘Through his taped lectures, his books, and most importantly through the experimental methods, syntheses of ancient meditational and modern psycho-therapeutic techniques that he has devised and that are conducted under his guidance, he succeeds, often to an astonishing extent, in increasing the intelligence, compassion, clarity and power of those who are drawn to him. His appeal, his integrity and his grasp, both practical and theoretical, of the psychology of modern man, make him unique among “spiritual” teachers.’
Many psychologists comment on Osho’s effectiveness in dealing with the modern problem of alienation: ‘The work of [Osho] is one of the important sources of ideas and inspiration for the revitalization of the US. We have, at the community level, lost much of the sense of community. There is considerable conflict without it being effectively resolved, leaving fragmented groups unable to work together efficiently. There is a loss of worth in a higher moral order. I see the [Osho] work as contributing to all of these points.’ J.R. Newbrough, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology and Education at Vanderbilt University, USA.
‘The absolute uniqueness of [Osho]’s teachings is in the fact and way he brings back the long lost dimension of meditation and spirituality to the Western everyday life; he takes the Western scientific mind and succeeds in opening it to the spiritual. [Osho] is the answer to the modern neurosis as described by Victor E. Frankel – man searching desperately and most futilely for meaning in humanity in this sterile scientific materialist world.’ Counselor Friedemann Haworka, Australian youth-worker and former Baptist minister.
‘[Osho] has written innumerable religious books of an outstanding and original quality. He draws upon many Indian traditions in an attempt to provide an effective cure for the alienation which many individuals feel in our time.’ Dr John H. Crook, Reader in Psychology at the University of Bristol, UK.
‘The writings of [Osho] are at the forefront of understanding in the relationship between mind and body, the cornerstone of this work. I consider [Osho] to be a great scholar in the area of human relationship and personal contentment – two areas which will, in the next decade, be much pursued as the causes of physical illness.’ Australian psychiatrist Dr. John W. Harrison, author of The Psychological Basis of Physical Disease.
‘(Osho) has cast a new light on the special psychological problems of cross-cultural communication and human development’. Professor Robert Michael March.
Psychologists such as Carolyn Crane, an associate of the late Eric Berne, and Dr. Riccardo Zerbetto, Professor of Adolescent Psychiatry at the University of Siena, Vice-President of the Italian Association for Humanistic Psychology, and Consultant for Drug Abuse to the Italian Ministry of Health, wrote similar comments.
Dr Lars A Hendrickson, Professor of Psychology and Communication at Aalborg Universitetscenter, Denmark sums up for the psychologists: ‘[Osho] offers the most complete, the most important and the most satisfying perspective on human life, compared to all contemporary teachers in philosophy, psychology and religion. His contribution to human understanding and human growth is exactly what the world of today is in desperate need of.’
In similar vein, other writers refer to Osho’s all-encompassing vision. Swiss physicist and author, Dr. Arnold Schleger writes ‘Never before have I encountered anybody having such a harmonious and immensely creative view encompassing art, science, human psychology and religiousness,’ writes . Uvgustin Tuzhilin, Professor of Computer Science at The City University of New York, agrees.
‘[Osho] is a person of truly exceptional ability in the study and interpretation of philosophy and religion, and in the application of principles of behavioral science to problems of individual adjustment, creativity, and social organization. A significant part of [his] work relates directly to self-realization, its achievement, and its effect on others. I view him as an important voice in this area; he is really internationally known for his work.’ Dr Rufus P. Browning, Professor of Political Science, San Francisco State University.
‘[Osho] has provided a brilliant and original set of materials for work in the areas of sociology of religion, social psychiatry and community sociology. His commentaries on the classic texts of the world religions are in a class by themselves as regards showing the contemporary relevance of these ancient writings. His work with his disciples as reported in the darshan diaries shows a degree of psychological insight that would make any Western psychologist feel proud. The meditations that he has devised combine catharsis with meditation in such a way as to open both the heart and the mind.’ Dr Maurice R. Stein, Professor of Sociology, Brandeis University, USA.
‘I am sure that the teaching of this religious Master and the practical guidance he gives to his disciples and to whomsoever is open for it today is the most profound contribution of a man of our age to the question how we can master our lives in peace and freedom.’ Dr. Uli Braches, Lecturer in Sociology, Philosophy and Pedagogics, Johann-Wolfgang Goethe University of Frankfurt.
‘[Osho’s] teachings have had a tremendous impact on my life and occupation, which, is now much more strongly influenced by a positive vision of man. [Osho’s] exceptional abilities as a philosopher and psychologist will find significant recognition in many fields relating to human behavior.’ Hermann Wohle, Hamburg Police Commissioner.
Dr David K. Wheaton, Professor of Criminal Justice, Tennessee State University, also acknowledges Osho’s contribution to the social behavioral sciences, concluding, ‘I find his breadth of knowing to be of genius quality.’
Letter writers from the arts feel the same about Osho’s contribution to their fields. ‘I see him not only as a spiritual teacher but also as an artist of exceptional vision … and what would the arts be without that vision of something greater, something more beautiful in our lives – this taste of existence which every great artist tries to express, and which humanity needs for everyone.’ Bruno DeMattio, German artist and author of The Software Culture is Coming and Jeneits der Wuste.
Ken Adams, Senior Lecturer in Sculpture at St. Martin’s College of Art, London, explains why he describes Osho as ‘a gift to the rest of us’. ‘[Osho] has developed the gift of recalling to a great many people their essential humanity which is the origin of their creativity, however variously that may be expressed in different disciplines. Originality is the return to the origin. That is why so many creative workers have found their way to him, in both science and art. Osho beautifully transcends the dichotomy between science and art. He is a ruthlessly observant psychologist speaking with the voice of a poet. His knowledge of therapeutic techniques is encyclopedic, and it is applied to the generation of a more energetic working life.’
Speaking with the enigmatic brevity of a true Zen poet, Akiko Hyuga of the Japanese Arts Commendation Association, writes, ‘The existence of [Osho] has a great meaning. His message to Art is that Art is the same as religion. We have to go back to this basis.’
The letters reveal Osho’s influence on the many different arts. ‘Osho’s thoughts about music are among the deepest and most inspiring in contemporary musical thinking. They have influenced hundreds of modern musicians all over the world. From my own writings, again and again, I have experienced the authority Osho enjoys in dozens of fields from philosophy and religion to art and music and modern life styles. It is hardly possible any more to write about many of these subjects without quoting Osho.’ Professor H.C. Joachim-Ernst Berendt, German author of 21 books, and TV and film producer.
‘In India I heard him speaking about theater. It was the most profound and insightful I’ve ever heard on that issue, like opening new dimensions, new angles to look at.’Rainer Artenfels, well-known Viennese actor and director, member of Max Reinhardt’s Theater in der Josefstadt.
Warren Robertson, Director of the Warren Robertson Theater Workshop, New York, founder and artistic director of the Actors Repertory Theater, New York, and author of Free to Act writes that when Osho’s books were brought to his attention by British actor Terence Stamp, ‘the effect of Osho’s depth of knowledge and poetic insight was staggering for me. He is a truly rare and exceptional man. His insights into the arts and sciences are so fresh, original and valuable.’
‘As an actor and as a person, I am always seeking inspiration from the great minds of our time. I came across the teachings of [Osho] some ten years ago while traveling in India. Immediately I recognized him to be a world teacher. His incredible taped discourse lectures and books have inspired me (and millions of others) on the path of self-evolution. His words and work live within me to this very day. His presence here is like a great bell tolling … awaken, awaken, awaken!’ James Coburn, Hollywood movie star.
‘i can only applaud and admire [Osho’s] words of universal truth and wisdom, and the poetic manner in which he expresses himself. In my opinion, [Osho’s] ability as an artist and theologian is exceptional’. Jeff Gorman, winner of every award in the advertising industry.
Danish award-winning author Grethe Friis, Masanori Oe and Motohiko Furna from Japan, French-Italian novelist Jean Josipovici, and American Paul Reps, the man who popularised Zen for the seventies’ culture, also write in favour of Osho.
‘[Osho] has had a positive influence on my work. He is a great and prolific teacher, someone whose influence on the arts will gradually be felt through the coming decades.’ Jack W. Burnham, Professor of Art at Northwestern University, USA.
Other letter-writers say they consider Osho important for the way he has integrated Eastern and Western philosophies and cultures. ‘The integration of occidental and oriental cultures is the only factor necessary to stop the human species from perishing to greater catastrophes. [Osho] is essential for such integration.’ Rose Marie Muraro, best-selling author, Brazil.
Dr Felicitas D Goodman, Director of the Cuyamunque Institute (USA), author and former university professor of anthropology and linguistics also praises Osho’s creation of ‘a successful synthesis between the Eastern meditative approach and Western psychological techniques’.
‘[Osho] has understood that in the modern world there can no longer be any divisions and barriers, and that the future will bring about a uniform culture. Thus he walks all the different paths discovering the universal in each of them: Sufism, Vedanta, Yoga, Zen, Tantra, Buddhism, Hassidism, Taoism, apocryphal scriptures, Gurdjieff, the Greek philosophers, Western mystics and modern psychotherapists. Truth is there for everybody to find, but who today would want to read the Upanishads or the Buddhist sutras, and who could find the time to do so among the thousand and one engagements and distractions? [Osho] is able to explain those ancient truths in modern language, giving examples from everyday life and using clear and simple concepts. Thanks to his clarity of speech, his anecdotes, jokes and stories, he has made the traditionally dry and abstract treatises of those schools easily understandable to all. Thus, [Osho’s] work is of fundamental importance.’ Claudio Lamparelli, Italian author.
‘[Osho] is a man of vast culture. His clear concepts about philosophy and the oriental religions such as those in Japan, China, India and the Middle East are especially precious for Western students who do not have easy access to such sources.’ Alexandro Jodorowsky, French film director, actor and writer.
The reasons given by religious professionals for their praise of Osho were as diverse as the religions of the writers.
Some were attracted to his teachings on Jesus: ‘His grasp and perception of the teachings of Jesus Christ are extraordinary and very needed by both ministers and laity of Western materialistic Christianity,’ The Reverend Frank Stribbling.
‘I am immensely impressed by [Osho’s] range of insight and understanding. His analysis of the psychological pressures of modern society show his grasp both of depth psychology and of current existential thought. Yet his teaching of these complex issues is done with great simplicity and sensitivity. Following on from this, his originality is particularly evident in the use within his communities of the best methods of Western group therapy, alongside Eastern techniques of self-awareness and meditation. The result is, to my mind, a great enriching of our understanding of the person, and the healing of the person. Theologically I find him equally exciting. He gives to us in the West the treasures of Eastern spirituality, yet his writings on the sayings of Jesus are his fullest and most profound. But there is a synergy operating from him. He is more than just the sum of his psychological, philosophical and spiritual parts. From him there flows an energy of love and creativity which is enabling many people to find a new meaning to life, to work and to worship.’ The Reverend Frederick Partington, an Anglican priest for 20 years.
Others were attracted to his teachings on Buddhism. ‘This master is the rarest and most talented religionist to appear in this century. His writings about Buddhism are full of inspiration and original conceptions. As a specialist in Buddhism, I have been surprised many times by his original and creative interpretations and by his unique religiousness. His interpretations are saturated with the truth of Buddhism. Even the outstanding monks that are present here in Japan cannot obtain to this level of interpretation.’ ProfessorKazuyoshi Kina, Japan’s best-known Buddhist scholar.
‘By any criteria, [Osho] is one of the most important spiritual teachers in America today. He has developed programs for self-transformation that are as ingenious as they are various. He has published more than twenty books which develop and explain the ancient wisdom of tantra yoga.’ Dr. Gordon-McCutchan, Lecturer in American Religious History at the University of California.
Japanese Zen monks write with the simplicity of their philosophy: ‘I thank [Osho] for making it possible for me to accept a traditional Zen life totally:’ Shinkai Tanaka, master of the Saikohzenji Zen Temple, Kameoka.
‘I have been deeply moved by the wonder of [Osho]:’ Kou Sugawara, head priest ,Goseiji Temple , Miyagi.
‘[Osho] has been making a valuable contribution to many people as a spiritual teacher. Particularly important has been the remarkable work he has already done to introduce the spirit of meditation to many young people. Among many of his remarkable achievements is his ability to successfully synthesize a wide range of traditional experience and knowledge.’ The Reverend Reuho Yamada, head priest of Choshoji (Zen) Temple in Beppu.
‘[Osho] is a man of gifted intellect and extraordinary erudition. He exhibits an amazing command both of Eastern and Western intellectual, social, and cultural history. He has produced an impressive number of commentaries on mystical thinkers and traditions; ranging from Yoga, Vedanta, Tantrism, Buddhism, Taoism, and Zen in the East; to Greek, Christian, Jewish, and Islamic mysticism in the West. His published discourses are a source of much wisdom, insight and poetic beauty. And I regard his teachings to be a significant contribution to humanity’s enduring quest for spiritual understanding, growth and fulfillment.’ Ronald 0. Clarke, Th.D., Professor of Religious Studies at Oregon State University.
’[Osho] is well respected among my colleagues as an articulate spokesman of Eastern religious traditions and philosophies. As a religious philosopher, he stands head and shoulders above most of his Asian contemporaries. Out of respect for this man’s intellectual accomplishments, prestigious educational institutions like the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley are teaching classes on his thought. [Osho] is a free-thinking religious philosopher in our age who has sparked considerable debate over his views. Like Mahatma Gandhi in the previous generation, [Osho] has provided the impetus for meaningful intellectual and religious debate.’ Rabbi Michael Ziegler, California.
‘[Osho’s] work bears the imprint not of one tradition, but of a man of intellectual penetration and insight whose perceptions of the human dilemma point not to easy solutions nor to esoteric answers, but which instead return the sensitive reader to him/herself, to an understanding of the universal human need which we continuously seek to satisfy. In his eclectic approach to religious content and form, he directs those who can hear his message to the nexus of all human experience and of all religious quests. [Osho]’s learning is staggering: He writes with equal knowledge and lucidity on Jewish mystical teachers, Japanese religious traditions, the great Chinese mystics, as well as the legendary spiritual masters of his native India. And he is conversant with Spinoza and Nietzsche as with Christ and Buddha. More importantly than his command of their thought is the new light in which he sees these progenitors of our philosophies.’ Diane Mintz, M.A. Rabbinic Literature.
‘I have found the immediate influence, the teaching and the books of [Osho] most stimulating, giving a lot of impulses to keep religious traditions alive and to transform them into present myths to live by.’ Gerhard Marcel Martin, Professor of Practical Theology, University of Marburg, Germany.
‘I have read all his books and felt enriched tremendously by his philosophy of life, his great understanding and tolerance of all religions.’ Rabbi Joseph H. Gelberman, Tree of Life Synagogue, New York.
‘[Osho] is a wise man, and a distinguished psychologist. With his meditation techniques, which he developed partly himself, he understands how to convey to us Western people something of the wisdom of the East without us having to give up the fruits of our Western cultural development and civilization.’ Gabriel Looser Th.D, Roman Catholic theologian working in the hospital ministry in Berne, Switzerland.
Christiane Van der Spieren, a teacher of Roman Catholicism in Belgium for over 20 years, admired his books because they ‘provide a real alternative to create a new happy world and a new mankind’.
The National President of the Venerable Permanent Counsel of the Orthodox Church of Italy notes Osho’s ‘enormous contribution towards raising the understanding and consciousness of the human self’.
Osho ‘is renowned throughout the world, crossing lines of religion, profession, race, creed, country, culture, age, education and background:’ The Reverend Jill Gerhard, minister for ten years of the Church of Religious Science, San Francisco. A hostess of radio and TV talk shows in San Francisco, she also adds, ‘I have been in the presence of many spiritual giants, I have read their works and scriptures but I know of no other now living who is so great a religious teacher or spiritual leader as [Osho].‘
‘After many years of professional study on the phenomenon of enlightened masters and their religions, I feel qualified to say that the presence of [Osho] is the living embodiment of what is otherwise only academic speculation, religious dogma, or at best has become the stuff of myth and legend. Only twelve knew Jesus, perhaps several thousands recognized Buddha, today now, millions hear the silence of [Osho].’ Dr. Agnete Kutar, Lecturer, Freie Universitat of Berlin.
‘[Osho’s] ideas have contemporary meaning and validity. His understanding of the modern mind and his approach to it shows great insight that it is in line with Indian traditional thought, Buddhism, and modern psychology. His relating spiritual experience and psychology is unusual and interesting. As with other religious leaders who first met persecution and rejection, it is difficult to see what influence his teaching will have in the future, just as in the first century none would have guessed the influence of Jesus two thousand years later. However, given the level of education of most of his followers and their professions, we could expect that his insights will flow into the general society.’ Alfred Bloom, Professor of Religion at the University of Hawaii.
‘My encounter with the thoughts and actions of [Osho] has been an authentic lightning bolt. In between two worlds, the Eastern and the Western, which he knows totally, this master can work for the rebirth of a new world, of a better world.’ Gregorio, the Archimandrite of Turin (Orthodox Catholic Church of Italy- Moscow Patriarchate)
Summing up, Professor Maurice R. Stein of Brandeis University makes the following plea to the US government: ‘[Osho] is a uniquely brilliant spiritual teacher. It is regrettable that he has become controversial. But this country need not hesitate to accommodate controversy – especially with regards to someone whose intellectual and spiritual gifts are of such magnitude.’