As the mall slowly comes alive on a lazy Sunday morning, one obscure corner stands out because of its inactivity. If you peer deeper through its half-shuttered fašade, you witness a curious calm amid the surrounding chaos as a small group of men and women quietly sit on mats, meditating. What comes across as some cult congregation, is a gathering of Osho followers who converge at the Osho World outlet in Forum every Sunday.
There is nothing unusual in this yet another stress-busting measure propagated by new-age gurus. Except for the rather unique concept of Meditation in the Marketplace, which draws upon the thought that ". noise is divine. If one listens silently, there is a certain harmony in the noise even in the marketplace, it ceases to be a distraction any more". The idea gives form to Osho's view that one doesn't need to run to the jungles to meditate and find peace. The treasure exists within oneself and not outside.
The sessions at Forum were started exclusively for the employees of Osho World, Ishis and Patchi outlets in Forum, all of which are owned by the parent company Aarcee Exports Pvt Ltd.
"We, at Osho World, felt it was a wonderful way to overcome stress right here at our workplace and we wanted employees in our sister concerns to get a taste of this as well," says Om Satyam of Osho World.
Under popular demand, space had to be created for another session with regulars after the first session for the staff members. The 45-minute exercise, costing Rs 50 per session, teaches various meditation techniques like Chakra Sound (activating the various chakras of the body) and Anapana-Sati Yoga (a technique of watching one's breath).
"I attended one session here and have since been practising at home. Over a period of time I've experienced perceptible changes in my persona. I don't feel like drinking alcohol anymore for one and my inter-personal relationships have improved manifold. My wife says I've become softer now!" says Prem Lal, an advocate.
Osho World is planning to carry this forward by organising meditation workshops for clubs and corporate houses.
- Sangita Sultania G. Roy