Rajneeshpuram, a controversial religious community, transplanted from India to Oregon in 1981, attracted international attention when several of its leaders were arrested in 1985. The spiritual leader, Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, was deported from the United States and others subsequently served prison terms for arson, poisonings, attempted murder, and other crimes. Rajneesh's followers, called 'sannyasin', are distinguished from other religious groups by their denial of the legitimacy of any moral code for regulating conduct, their rejection of personal constraint by existing human institutions, and the absence of any stable shared system of beliefs. This book is a narrative account of the progressive regimentation of the commune and the escalating hostilities between it and the surrounding communities that led to eventual dismantlement. This is a comprehensive treatment of the Oregon Rajneesh incident from a sociological perspective, this study offers insights into the importance of shared values for regulating group processes and for negotiating relationships with other groups.
Table of Contents
1. The Oregon colony at peak development
2. Manufacturing and marketing a new religion
3. Organizational forms for exporting the
4. Transplanting the Poona colony to Eastern
5. Political and institutional overextension
6. Desperation defenses of Rajneeshpuram
7. Aftermath and what it might all mean?