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The Day I Met OSHO and Why I Couldn't Stop Laughing

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Margot Anand tells how she went from a broken heart to laughing uncontrollably every day. Marrying because “Having a man in your life is tantamount to being successful,” Margot found herself divorced and brokenhearted. She meets Osho, the spiritual master, and asks him for his help. At vipassana sessions, instead of feeling peaceful, “One mad soap opera after another starts to unwind in my mind.” Another meeting with the master and the soap operas stop. During her meditation practice, her inner voice reveals, “You are a woman who is free, whether she has a man in her life or not.” At a final meeting with Osho, he gives her the gift of laughter.

Margot Anand

Margot Anand, the world’s leading authority on Tantra, is an internationally acclaimed author, public speaker, teacher, and seminar leader.

She has extensive training in Gestalt therapy, Hindu, and Buddhist Tantra (having studied with several spiritual masters, including the great mystic Osho in India), bioenergetics, massage, meditation, Arica, and Integral yoga.

Margot’s best-selling books integrating spirituality and sexuality have sold more than a million copies worldwide.

I'm in bed. It's a tender Monday morning in New York, and we're basking in post-orgasmic bliss. On this Monday morning, everything is relaxed. We let go. And suddenly, he asks me, "Margot, will you spend the rest of your life with me?" My God. That's the last thing I wanted to hear. I don't believe in marriage. I don't believe in ending up in a golden cage of marriage, like my parents. So I'm like scratching my chin. And I'm thinking, on the other hand, I do have a belief that having a man in your life is tantamount to being successful. So what to do? So I tell him, "Darling, I'm so honored. Give me five minutes, so I think about it."

So I tiptoe down from the loft of our bedroom in New York, and I discreetly and silently go to the office downstairs, open the door, close it, grab the phone, and make a call to my friend Robert the lawyer. "Hi, Robert, can you tell me how much money does it cost and how much time does it take to divorce in New York?" "Oh, easy. $200 and in two days." Oh, wow. This is just what I wanted to hear. "Thank you." I hang up the phone, go back to the bedroom. "Darling, it's a yes, it's a yes."

Well, time passes, and now we're five years later, and $200 and I'm a divorced woman, and I'm on my way to India to meet this famed spiritual master called Osho in Pune. I have to admit that I have a broken heart. This divorce wasn't so easy. I made it sound easy, but I woke up to the fact that this man really loved me, and I kind of maybe didn't take him seriously enough. So my heart is crying. I missed an opportunity for love.

So I come in front of Osho—the great Osho. Ah, he's wonderful. He wears a white robe, and he has a long beard, and he's at the same time, impressive and tender and soft and open. And I look in his eyes, and I say, "Osho, my heart is broken. Will you help me?" Osho takes a flashlight out of his pocket, shines it on me, reads something mysterious—I don't know what—and says to me, "You have gone in deep emotions and suffered a lot, but it has not affected your core." "Ah, I see. There's hope. I don't have to stay stuck in this sadness and these tears for the rest of my life." And then he says, "Okay, go to do the vipassana group and come and see me later." "Okay. Very good."

Off we go to the vipassana. Piece of cake. I'm such a good meditator. I am going to learn my peace on the pillow. It's gonna be easy. No problem. (It's my ego speaking.) Anyway, we arrive at the vipassana. We start the meditation. I sit on the pillow, and it's not at all what I expected. In fact, what happens is one mad soap opera after another starts to unwind in my mind while I'm sitting there, and there's nothing I could do about it. So the first day, I see my husband, or I should say my ex-husband, getting his bones bruised by some karate champions, losing the fight. The next day, I see gangsters coming and dousing gasoline over his house, and everything is burning. His pajamas are on fire. He jumps through the window into the pool. Ha ha ha! The next day the cops are stopping him and fining him because he didn't pay his debts, and he goes to jail.

I'm watching all this, and I'm kind of wondering, what is this? What is going on here? This never happened to me before. And I have to admit that there is a secret part of me that kind of relishes the revenge. I am having my revenge sitting on the pillow in fact, but I don't feel too proud about it.

Anyway, it goes on and on and on day after day, another soap opera, and it goes on. There's nothing I can do about it. I'm totally fed up. So I go to the teacher. I said, "Teacher, what is going on here?" And I explain what's going on. And she says something very wise. She says, "Well, when your body or your mind are wounded, then the infection is there, and the pus has to be released so the infection can heal. And so the wound also can heal. So your mind is like your body. Your mind is releasing the wound, and there's nothing you can do." Nothing I can do. Gee. Back on the pillow with hope. Same old, same old, more soap operas. He breaks a leg. He goes to the hospital.

So finally I said, okay, it's enough. I'm gonna ask Osho for help. So I write Osho a letter, and I said, "Dear Osho, I didn't come to sit on the pillow here to kill my husband. Can you do something to help me?" I send the letter over. The next day peace in the house. No more soap operas. Everything is quiet. Peace on the pillow. Peace in my mind—blessings. Oh my God. Finally, I can meditate. Thank you, Osho. I'm very grateful.

So I meditate, and the pearl arrives. The gift of this week-long meditation. This inner voice that says to me, "As a human being, you are a woman who is free, whether she has a man in her life or not." Now that to me meant a lot because I realized at that moment that I was actually in this program—in this belief—that I married this man because this was the way to be successful. This was the way to go out in the world to be socially accepted. And so without a husband, no success. So now I was getting the real teaching. And now the challenge was you are free as you are, and you don't need to have anybody to feel you can be creative and successful. So this was a new step into a new life for me—a big teaching. So I was very grateful.

So end of the meditation, I go home. I rest, and I remember Osho told me to come see him when I was finished. Well, I got nothing to tell him, really, except I'm full of gratitude. Well, I go anyway. So I walk in the hall, the lecture hall. There's about forty people there, all rather solemn and serious. Germans. I sit down. I wait until they call my name. And when they call my name, I go sit at Osho's feet. And I just look at him adoringly. And I say, "Thank you" because I have nothing else to say, really.

And then he smiles, and he puts his middle finger on my third eye as he usually does as a blessing. I receive it expecting nothing in particular. And all of a sudden, I feel like I'm in an earthquake. The ground under my coccyx is rumbling and grumbling and shaking. And I say, "What is going on?" And soon enough, it turns out that this grumbling and shaking is this uncontrollable laughter that is coming up from my loins through my bones. And I'm exploding in mirth, and there's nothing I can do to control it. Ha-ha-ha. And I laugh, and I laugh until I roll on the floor. I'm rolling on the floor with laughter, and Osho is laughing in his beard. And now, all of a sudden, the whole room is laughing, and I'm completely helpless. I'm here with my legs up, my arms up, laughing, laughing, holding my belly. Finally, they have to carry me to my seat. Okay. Well, this is a pretty exhausting experience. So at the end of it, we go home, and I say, "Wow, that was great. That was definitely, you know, a good gift—this laughter."

I go home, and I think, Ah, time to rest. I'm really tired. The next day I get up. It's not finished. What happens, to my great amazement, is that every day at 7:00 p.m., the laughter comes back, and I have nothing to do with it. I might be walking down the street—ha-ha-ha-ha! I might be eating a restaurant with a friend—ha-ha-ha-ha! The food goes everywhere. It explodes in a moment that is completely unexpected. I forget. I don't know when it's coming. Suddenly the plate and food flies and my friend laughs.

I get the tissue, the laughing tissue, out of my bag. I'm ready by then. And then I'd be writing a letter to someone—ha-ha-ha! Anyway, whatever I do—talking to a friend, walking down the street—the laughter comes back day after day after day. And guess what? Guess how long it came back? One month. Imagine that. For one month, you are breaking out in uncontrollable mirth, complete laughter. You have no control over it. You are not even doing it. It's happening to you. You don't know where it's coming from, but you realize a few things. You realize, my friends, that when you laugh, something happens. You are dissociated from the object of your laughter. You become a sort of a witness to something which isn't, you know, you. It's something. You are laughing, but you don't know what it is. So, after a while laughing and laughing and laughing, I start to realize what's happening here.

I'm laughing at myself. You know, I'm laughing at myself because why else? Why else would I be laughing? So, then I start to say, "Yeah, I'm laughing at myself. Well, okay. So who is the self I'm laughing at? Oh. And I start to see all the shenanigans I've played in my life, and all the idiocies and the divorce and you know, everything becomes a kind of a ridiculous joke, you know? And I begin to see like life, everything around it, everything around me, you know, I see everything as a ridiculous joke. I can't take anybody seriously anymore. Myself the first. I am a clown. Everybody's a clown. Okay. Forget about it. Get onto your work. Write your letters. Do your thing. Ha-ha-ha! There it comes back to remind me once again.

And so finally, I realized that this master had given me an incredible gift, and that was this gift to not be able to take myself seriously anymore, and not be able to take anything in life seriously anymore. And so there is this kind of deep inner joy, especially there, because imagine what would happen to you if every night at 7:00 p.m. you would start to laugh for no reason. I mean, it doesn't make any sense. You're not doing it. Okay? You have no reason to laugh and there it goes, and you have no control over it. I mean, it does something. It imprints laughter in the cells of your body. And you know that laughter is part of your nature, and laughter is your way to enlightenment. Okay. So that's the story.


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