Close Encounters of a Mysterious Kind

waiting for the master

by Ma Chetan Rahasya

t was seventeen years ago when I first set eyes on an image of my master. Little did I know then that I would grow up and fall in love in the way that I have today. I remember it well, and I have thought back to that time and space persistently until recently, turning the memory around in my mind like a fine loop.

New York at the airport. Stoically, patiently, quietly, my family and I stood in an immigration line-up like good citizens of a foreign country. We had traveled far, leaving England on route to our home in Malaysia. I do not remember any of the people who must have clustered around my little body, any of the sounds or smells, any of the hustling and bustling of that airport ex-perience. All I remember are the people who began to materialize in an orangey red spec-tacle which grew beside me. It all began with the ecstatic, ebullient individuals of radiant array and their swinging beaded necklaces.

I was caught, astonished, transfixed as only an eight-year-old could be and I stared without blinking at this group of people in red and orange; smiling faces, laughing eyes, hugging arms, giggling, bubbling orations. I was dazzled with orange light, delighted as though drinking orange crush or cherry cream soda for the first time, my mouth watering as though I had just inhaled the vapour of a peeled fruit. I stared on, inundating my little self with the happening, all the while fastening my eyes on the image encased in plastic and dancing at the end of the wooden beads. The beads swung wildly with the movements of their wearers, never stopping long enough for me to properly capture the black and white image of the bearded face. I knew the answers to all of my questions would be revealed if only I could figure out who it was. The more I stared the more the picture evaded my gaze. All I was able to capture was a glistening of the face but nothing which satisfied my intense fascination. (This is all I can remember.)

Memory eludes me, it regulates my emotions, it forms and reforms as I do. It is fluid, never static; above all, my memory is selective. I remember nothing else from our voyage except that spectacle at the New York Airport. Over the years, I would remember it and forget it, over and over. I did not realize that at this moment I started a period of waiting which lasted sixteen years. Sixteen years of remembering and forgetting until the significance of the event was revealed.

A year and a half ago I arrived in Vancouver thinking I had come here to study. Oblivious to the other forces that drew me here, I had in fact come to Vancouver to meet my master. I moved into a communal house which became the Osho Samaroha Meditation Centre. I had been participating in group meditations and listening to Osho’s discourses for a couple of months before I realized who I was in the presence of. When I came across photo-graphs of a visit Osho made to New York something sparked inside me and there was an instantaneous recognition of my experience as a child at the airport. I had been told of Osho’s work, of the devices he uses to break the strong conditionings of his disciples; I had been told of the time when everybody wore orange and the mala; I had even been practicing some of his meditation techniques. All the while something had stirred inside me but no connection had been made. But there was no mistaking it, I had been hit by a thunderbolt. I ran to look more carefully at the picture on a friend’s mala. This is it! There was so much laughter and overflowing joy, I couldn’t believe what I was seeing, but it was true. Yes! This is the mystery I’ve been waiting for. This is the face I could never grasp. At that moment I realized Osho was my master. Two months later on the 10th of January, 1998, I became Ma Chetan Rahasya: conscious mystery.

The master uses all sorts of devices. Waiting seems to be a big one for me. For sixteen years I waited for the Master to be revealed to me, even though I did not know it at the time. Sometimes I feel impatient and regretful that I missed Osho in His body, that I had to wait for so long. But in my heart I know there was no other way that this could have happened. I have heard Osho say that with all His devices, it is always too early for someone to take sannyas and always too late, which to me somehow means that it is always the right time.

And why do I need my Master? Because I have forgotten. I have forgotten something vitally important about myself, I have forgotten who I am. The master is a gateway to my own being, to my own self. The master outside is a reflection of the master inside me. At the moment when I recognized my Master the waiting of sixteen years came to an end only to give way to the beginning of another kind of waiting. Perhaps there will be a day when I’ll look at the photograph on my mala but instead of seeing Osho’s face all I’ll see is emptiness. So I will continue waiting until a day when his face disappears, when I remember who I am, when I meet my conscious mystery.

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