Check out these 5 useful tips for a blissful career!
Nothing to Lose by Manbeena Sandhu is a no holds barred Ma Anand Sheela biography, a fascinating and controversial woman from the Osho cult.
The story of Ma Anand Sheela is controversial, provocative and intriguing. She is indeed the most fascinating anti-hero – intelligent, persuasive, and driven by her love for her master whom she calls ‘Bhagwan’ to do whatever it takes to satisfy his demands.
The book starts with Sheela in a guesthouse in Germany – planning to start a new life with twenty of her followers – to start a new business.
Sheela is shocked when FBI knocks on her door – to arrest her and two of her aides. Her lawyer tells her that the FBI and her Bhagwan have slapped multiple changes on her – attempted murder, bio-terrorist attack, wire-tapping, theft, drugging, immigration fraud.
We are intrigued – why would an intelligent, strong woman land up in jail because of her master?
In the jail, as Sheela ruminates on her past, her childhood in a liberal household where the children are not shackled by rules.
At the young age of 16, Sheela attends the lecture of Acharya Rajneesh, a new age Guru with revolutionary ideas. Sheela is mesmerised by the hypnotic voice and powerful eyes of the master – she sits in front of him in complete surrender.
With the ‘master’ in her heart, Sheela goes to the US for her graduation where she falls in love with Marc at first sight and spends happy moments with him. Her parents accept Marc unconditionally – this unconditional love empowers Sheela to follow her heart.
Sheela brings Marc to the master’s ashram in Pune where they them as his disciples, converts them into neo-sannyasins. They are renamed Ma Anand Sheela and Swami Chinmaya – they don orange robes and malas round their necks and stay with the master.
The book then goes on to describe ashram life in the Osho Rajneesh cult, Ma Anand Sheela’s meteoric rise to power, and the misuse of it on all sides – it all reads almost like a crime thriller complete with property issues and Osho’s flight to the US, and later incidences.
The photograph of Ma Anand Sheela with her head on the master’s lap in complete surrender shows how deep their relationship was. Other photographs of the master and his followers speak volumes about the cult.
The author dwells in length about the master, the physical and mental health issues of followers, and the increasing problems for the ashram – but we are distanced from Sheela, her thoughts, emotions. Is she running around, only to please her master? She stops at nothing to satisfy his ever-increasing demands. While the master indulges in a luxurious lifestyle, Sheela takes the entire brunt of managing the commune, upto the arrest, and the present.
It is heartening to see Sheela’s resilience and her ability to start from the scratch to build a business and life. A strong message for women – “failure is never fatal.”
Has the author done justice to Ma Anand Sheela’s story? I am not sure – the ‘master’ takes so much space, and yet I cannot see any greatness in him that makes Sheela so devoted to him.
Sheela’s story is controversial yet fascinating – we might dislike the master’s philosophy, question her blind faith, disapprove of her methods, but we cannot fail to appreciate her grit, confidence, perseverance and indomitable spirit.
If you would like to pick up a copy of The Forest of Enchantments by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni, use our affiliate links at Amazon India, and at Amazon US.
Women’s Web gets a small share of every purchase you make through these links, and every little helps us continue bringing you the reads you love!
Image source: YouTube and Por Fonte, Conteúdo restrito, Link
Women's Web is an open platform that publishes a diversity of views. Individual posts do not necessarily represent the platform's views and opinions at all times. If you have a complementary or differing point of view, sign up and start sharing your views too!
Author of book, Hello Banker.
Founder, Trainer at Banxzu training and development solutions.
23 years of banking experience, 13 years training experience read more...
Women's Web is an open platform that publishes a diversity of views, individual posts do not necessarily represent the platform's views and opinions at all times.
Stay updated with our Weekly Newsletter or Daily Summary - or both!
Neena Gupta’s take on love between a man and woman opens a can of worms. She’s speaking her truth, which is a reality for so many people, but is it universal?
Neena Gupta made a statement in her interview with Humans of Bombay that she doesn’t believe love exists between a man and a woman. She said it starts off with lust, which then changes into affection, and becomes a habit. The only love she’s ever known and felt is for her daughter, Masaba.
Neena is married to Vivek Mehra, a chartered accountant who she first met on a flight. Vivek Mehra has two children, and it’s his second marriage. It’s Neena’s second marriage too. She was earlier married at an early age of 20. She has one child, Masaba, from her previous relationship with the now retired West Indian cricketer, Vivian Richards.
Her statement about love evoked some vehement reactions ranging from she’s not met the right man to “blood runs thicker than water”.
Emotional Eating: the practice of finding comfort in food is common and if unregulated can lead to eating complications. Here is a step-by-step guide on how you can cope up with emotional eating.
Do you find yourself reaching for a bar of chocolate or a bowl of ice cream when you are upset? Well, finding comfort in food is common and is part of a practice called Emotional Eating.
People who emotionally eat are found to do so several times a week to suppress their negative feelings. They may later regret on doing so and this becomes a vicious cycle leading to multiple eating disorders and weight related stress
What causes someone to eat emotionally? Anything from work stress to financial woes, health issues and even relationship struggles can be the root cause of emotional eating. It’s an issue which affects both sexes, but is more common in women than in men.
Please enter your email address