How far would you go to protect someone you love? I just finished watching Wild, Wild Country – a Netflix documentary about the controversial spiritual teacher Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh and his disciples, in particular his personal secretary, Ma Anand Sheela. Those of us who followed this bizarre saga as it unfolded in the early 80s remember watching in disbelief as the guru, a rebellious character who championed freedom (especially when it came to sex), transplanted his commune to the wilds of Oregon – only to clash violently with God-fearing locals.
The enthusiastic sannyasins transformed 64,000 acres into a thriving community. Yet with the Jim Jones massacre still fresh in peoples’ minds, the antics of these orange-clad, sex-loving, gun-toting devotees struck fear in the hearts of Wasco County residents. Rajneesh (later known as Osho) and his bliss-filled teachings, detailed in brilliant books like Tantra, Spirituality and Sex, were indeed revolutionary. Yet Osho, who was deported back to India in 1985 amid charges of immigration fraud and died five years later, was very much a flawed human being.
Osho craved power and wealth. And he found a willing accomplice in his closest confidant, Ma Anand Sheela, who helped him amass over $50 million in assets (including 94 Rolls-Royces!) Interviewed for the series, Sheela readily admitted that she was in love with her master. Though they were apparently not having a sexual relationship, she was willing to go to dangerous lengths to cover for him. She ultimately incurred his wrath by fleeing the commune, and testified that he was complicit in her criminal activities (which he vehemently denied). She ended up pleading guilty to attempted murder of a government official and assault during her involvement in a 1984 bio-terror attack.
Sheela was given absolute power, and she abused it. But who among us has not moved mountains for our beloved? Her Capricorn Sun and Mercury are conjunct Osho’s Mars, Mercury, Venus, Moon and Saturn in his eighth house of shared wealth and secret dealings. Together, they wielded unimaginable power. Once I saw that, I realized why Wild, Wild Country was popping up on Netflix right now – with an impending conjunction of Mars and Saturn in Capricorn, exact on April 2. Mars in its exaltation conjunct Saturn in its domicile gives access to power and rewards those who are focused and persistent. Yet dealings with authority figures (such as the law) are also likely. We need to stay centered in our inner authority and handle relationships with as much maturity and restraint as we can muster, especially near the Libra Full Moon (March 31, 5:36 a.m. PDT). This tricky Full Moon conjuncts retrograde Mercury and squares Mars-Saturn in Capricorn. Full Moons illuminate, so whatever is out of integrity – on the world stage or in your personal life – is apt to be revealed. The involvement of retrograde Mercury says that whatever is coming to a head now has been brewing for some time.
The Moon in Libra opposite the Sun in Aries is strongly polarizing. You could find yourself having to choose between your own needs and someone else’s. Ask yourself: What am I doing in the name of love (or duty)? And is it working? Whether it’s me vs. you or us vs. them, fairness and justice take center stage. Think carefully before you argue or accuse, as retrograde Mercury can easily twist your words. The best use of this Full Moon is to reflect on your true motives and goals. To examine your commitments. Mars-Saturn is like a knife – wield it wisely. If you must slice something away, do it in a clear-headed, impartial manner. Be as authentic as possible in all your dealings – and trust that justice will be served.