These videos made me nostalgic and I would like to share some details about the camp.
I have attended three camps by Swami Chaitanya Bharti, lovingly
called Gurudev. Camps are either of 10days(Guru Purnima, july) and
40 days (11dec, Osho birthday, to Jan 19 Mahaparinirvan), but this
time camp may not happen as Gurudev is busy for making an Ashram. I
have seen the site of the Ashram and its on the bank of a river,
close to Nature and one feel silence all around. It's just that mind
drops on its own. Gurudev is planning to conduct the next camp in
the Ashram only.
Gurudev prefers working with a limited number of sincere seekers. but the fact is that people spend some years with him and then they move on and in their place new people come; only very few people stay on. And if someone has the guts to stay but is not willing to go deep in himself then Gurudev himself kicks him out :-)
Gurudev says, "In meditation camp one should have enough space so
that one goes deep in meditation". All 40 days camps have happened
on the seashore and last dec. 58 people attended. Gurudev says 40 is
the right number, above 40 it becomes difficult to tackle the
group-energy and it can loose the harmony.
Lots of laughter, meditations (like Kundalini, Gibberish, Tratak on Osho's photo, Nataraj, etc) happen.
But Gurudev says, "How long you will keep on doing meditation, go deep, watch the Watcher". In the camps meditations happen but the emphasis is on going beyond the Mind, in NO-Mind. As I remember, Gurudev talks a lot about consciousness and self-remembering.
In a 40 day camp, day 11 to day 32 (21 days) is in total silence.
One can put questions to Gurudev by writing or verbally, but no
talks with any one else. Stay in the camp is excellent, royal
treatment; I mean to say i have never tasted such good food in my
life, simple vegertarian food, least spicy and good rooms, lots of
breaks for tea, coffee. Emphasis is on conducting the camp in a
natural place where we dont have to use mind.
In the night there is white robe brotherhood, sufi music is played (mostly Bulle Shah) with the fragrance of Lobhan.
It's difficult for me to get a leave for 40 days to attend the camp but somehow things are arranged.
Last time the fee for a 40 day camp was 50k Indian rs, but, if many people come, Gurudev may increase it to 60k so that only potential people come. Gurudev says, "If you are really sincere then you'll get the money or money will be arranged for you. Indirectly I am making you rich. You'll earn more money so that you can attend camp(Gurdjieff) :-), but my experience is that I am getting financially poor but rich inwardly.
As I said before, "Many meditations happen in the camp", but the emphasis is on "just be". Gurudev also quotes Nisargadataji Maharaj (I AM technique) and Ramana Maharshi a lot. I'll put it in my words, Gurudev's message in each camp is: "Who does all these meditations, who watches the thoughts/feelings, You are that. Watch that watcher" and "Every thing is determined, happening. so don't waste your time changing life. If we are choosy in outside life then how can we have Choiceless Awareness inside. Accept and rejoice, be playful, just be."
Previously he was giving discourse every sunday in his house in Mysore 4 - 6 pm. and the fee for that discourse was 1000rs., but now that discourse is also discontinued. I feel he wants himself to be available for only a selected few, rather than attracting the crowd and this proposed Ashram is where those few people can stay together and rise higher in consciousness. In the Ashram also only 40 - 50 people can stay, at the most 70 - 80.
I am happy and sad for this unavailability of Gurudev. Sad because I can't meet him again for a long time. Happy because going to his place and coming back to my city is a hell of a Job.
A few excerpts from his book "Nothing Has Ever Happened" are available at the bottom of this page.