A Letter To My Fellow Sannyasins And Other Lovers of Truth
When Osho (then Bhagwan) broke silence during the summer of 1984, I listened with great attention as He was dissing religions and followers of enlightened beings, being intent on convincing anyone who cared to hear, “don’t follow anyone, be true to yourself.” There were so many situations on the Ranch in those days that required compromising, yielding, following orders all in the name of surrender to some Ma, some authority placed above the numerous workers, but His words affected me. By the fall, the commune was busy with organizing shelter and transportation for busloads of homeless people to become residents that would affect the elections (among the many questionable practices from that era). It became increasingly clear that it was time for me to leave. By December 1984, I made my way to San Francisco where I remained for a year before returning to Zurich in January 1986.
During the celebration in January 1990 honoring the Master’s departure, I met Chaitanyo, who at the time, was the Swiss sannyas node, bringing in all the news of Poona, sannyasins around the world and it was through this that he and I connected to begin the first of many projects that involved communicating to an audience what it means to be conscious, grow, celebrate life, wake up, dance and love life. We had our own work on those topics as well of course, while we continued to publish after moving back to the US. By 1993, we were publishing a free magazine called Taos Time that was bringing environmental news, book reviews, astrology and other topics into a monthly magazine paid by the advertisers.
Through this, we were introduced to Ra, who had been introducing The Human Design System in Germany and Switzerland where our Swiss friend came across it. During our friend’s visit to the US, he brought our charts, and also asked us whether we would be interested in hosting Ra, who wanted to come to the US. We were fascinated with the chart mechanics, and I personally thought it was right up my alley, a system that synthesized astrology, the I Ching with chakras and the Tree of Life (Kabbalah).
Some weeks later, we were phoned, agreed to host this introduction, and began a relationship with Ra and the work of publishing and promoting Human Design. The first visit of seven weeks was a private education, and required of both of us that we suspend our “white path trip” (spirituality), since the Human Design System was purportedly far more profound a truth, based on No Choice. Ra wished to train an army of analysts according to how he interpreted this knowledge that came to him as a revelation.
Since he had had no previous experience with any of the elements of the system, nor had he ever had any spiritual practice, he learned the system by sharing with hundreds of people, from whom he gradually developed a better grasp of the individual elements. Our task, in adhering to his structure, to train people in the system, started out with a profound flaw, that being, that we were attempting to get people ready to “sell a product;” the product being a reading of a chart. By 1999, this flaw become completely clear to me, that from the beginning we were creating a very sophisticated belief system that relied on “this is what Ra says.”
At the same time, Ra decided that we’d outlived our usefulness and so he connected with others who were waiting to be in the position to promote him and his work, while we were left with a the challenge to rediscover our own truth and awaken once again to the spiritual path.
Because it was essential to suspend the spiritual truth as an exploration of the mechanistic No Choice, I felt that I had compromised my own inner being far more than ever I had allowed myself on the Ranch. I was aware of the inclination of the Front Row temptation, to feel justified in actions that maybe were not completely loving, conscious or kind by taking direction and instructions from someone higher up than me (in this case, Ra). After the dissolution of that partnership, I was left with the remnants of my behavior and dependence on someone else for what was true.
It was quite revelatory to acknowledge turning over my life in the service of someone else. The lessons of the discourses in 1984 came back to me, and as I dropped deep within, finding solace through wise women who reminded me not to relinquish my spirit, I began a journey into the elements of the system but without Ra’s mechanistic interpretation.
When I was given the name Zeno, Bhagwan (as He was called then) described the passage of Dhyan (meditation) as it was brought to China where it became Ch’an before it would turn into the Japanese word Zen. When I was visiting a friend, I happened across a small booklet on Ch’an Buddhism which I began reading, and then became entirely entranced as a deep message communicated itself, namely, my spiritual path reminder and its application to Human Design, namely, that of Conditioned Genesis.
Essentially, in the Buddhist concept of Oneness and Unity, it is a profound misunderstanding not to recognize the Other as a reflection of Self. Through this, you come to realize that by bowing down to the other, you are bowing down to yourself, and in this manner, you can come into your own Divine Wholeness.
From the concept of No Choice, absolutely the philosophical opposite to Conditioned Genesis, I had seen countless acts of selfishness and irresponsibility with the justification, “it’s my Design, what to do?” It had bothered me enormously being treated with disregard and it felt just wrong that we would not be using Human Design in the service of the Greater Good, but rather, in allowing ourselves an indulgence into self-centeredness.
The inspiration from the Buddhist text gave me the starting point of coming back into my spiritual task of bringing consciousness, meditation, love and celebration through the tool and my work with Human Design.
The last years were an unraveling of what I had learned from Ra, what was his personal interpretation and what was the essential revelation information. Because I had had the privilege of so much private time, and I also have a very good memory, I was able to recognize how he adapted, changed, altered over the course of the years that would modify the work. One of the biggest instances of this was his initial promotion of a logic system, not a belief system that you can prove to yourself.
His original brochure said, don’t believe me; don’t trust me, yet through the development of the training program, it became exactly the opposite. He also said, everyone will learn design according to what they already know.
So in going back to the original elements of the revelation, I had the great privilege to have a real front row seat.
During the first years of this deconstruction, I came across a text from a spiritual teacher in the I AM movement that described the nature of the soul’s choice. Now remember, as a student of Ra, I had previously to argue that there is No Choice, but to read the text, I immediately recognized the core element in anyone’s life, termed the Magnetic Monopole, was exactly the same description as the soul’s passage of incarnation.
It was fascinating to uncover this first of truly monumental misinterpretations that happened as a result of a question asked by one of the early students. She asked if the Design calculation (from approximately three months before the physical birth) was the moment the soul entered the body, to which he answered Yes, thereby setting the stage for analysts to repeat this particular piece of disinformation for a long while (and maybe students are still making this error).
By freeing myself from this fundamental error, I suddenly was able to access the Soul’s journey from the view of Body, Mind, Spirit, and to recognize that while the Body Mind part is an imprint, the consciousness that guides the vessel, the Magnetic Monopole, the Soul, the Charioteer, does not show up in the chart, and therefore, is the part that can take responsibility.
Being able to introduce clients to the notion of taking responsibility for their impact on others liberated my work, making it possible to use Human Design as a tool for becoming more conscious, loving, awakened, and making the world a better place.
The four elements, beginning with the Kabbalah, then Chakras and astrology, interpreted through the profound message of the I Ching give a student a perfect opportunity for growing toward the highest aspect, waking up the Sage within. It is obvious that this tool can be enormously potent. It is important that it be used to liberate rather than imprison people within labels and formulas.
It is my great privilege to awaken on the path as a Lover of Truth, in the tradition of a beloved Master, Osho, and to fulfill the promise granted me by my name, Ma Vedant Zeno.