No biography can penetrate to the depths, particularly of a man who has known the no-mind also.
Many people have been asking me about Osho’s biography and I tell them that he is a mystic without a biography. They become puzzled and ask me then, why don’t you write his biography. I tell them that I cannot go against his vision, though I can say a few things which I have learned from being in his presence.
Osho has been known with various names — and he is not his names. The first name that he was given after his birth on December 11, 1931, was Rajneesh Chandra Mohan. At the young age of 21 (on March 21st, 1953 to be precise), when he was living in Jabalpur, he attained his enlightenment. And with this existential gift, his biography ended completely. From that moment onwards, he did not exist as a person. Yes, there was certainly an illumined presence, but no person, no ego, just a state of no-mind — an oceanic consciousness in a physical form.
In the Glimpses of a Golden Childhood, Osho himself describes this: The biography is bound to be very superficial, so superficial that it is not worth reading at all. No biography can penetrate to the depths, particularly the psychological layers of a man. Especially if the man has come to the point where the mind is no longer relevant to the nothingness hidden in the centre of an onion. You can peel it layer by layer, of course with tears in your eyes, but finally, nothing is left, and that is the centre of the onion; that is from where it had come in the first place. No biography can penetrate to the depths, particularly of a man who has known the no-mind also.
Talking about enlightenment, Osho says: Mind was disappearing; it was millions of miles away. It was difficult to catch hold of it, it was rushing farther and farther away, and there was no urge to keep it close. I was simply indifferent about it all. It was okay. There was no urge to remain continuous with the past.
Osho talks about that fateful night of enlightenment — the night of 21st March 1953: That night I became empty and became full. I became non-existential and became existence. That night I died and was reborn. But the one that was reborn has nothing to do with that which died, it is a discontinuous thing. On the surface, it looks continuous but it is discontinuous. The one who died, died totally; nothing of him has remained. Believe me, nothing of him has remained, not even a shadow. It died totally, utterly.
He concludes: That night the death was total. It was a date with death and God simultaneously.
As an illumined presence, Osho continued to remain in the body till January 19, 1990. During this period, he has been known as Acharya Rajneesh, Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh — and finally, his disciples started calling him Osho — which simply means: The Oceanic Consciousness. He has explained that the word “Osho” is derived from William James’ expression “oceanic experience” which means dissolving into the ocean.