Photo © 2003 Samvado Gunnar Kossatz

An Entire Wardrobe Inspired by the Rajneeshee Movement of 'Wild Wild Country'

New Age exhibitionism, but make it fashion.

by Gabriella Karefa-Johnson
Apr 5 2018, 3:18pm

Photo © 2003 Samvado Gunnar Kossatz

Wild Wild Country is freaky. The Netflix docuseries tells the almost unbelievable tale of the Rajneesh movement, and the 7,000-person commune they developed in the sleepy town of Antelope, Oregon in 1981. Over six parts, we get to know Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, the group’s spiritual leader, through extensive interviews with his trusted aids, including Ma Anand Sheela, a no-nonsense risk taker with killer style and (spoiler alert) actual killer instincts, and his disciples, the Neo-Sannyasins. The Neo-Sannyasins are notorious for host of wacky things: overthrowing a local government to rename their city Rajneeshpuram; engaging in violent meditation and group sex; committing what was, at the time, one of the largest acts of bioterrorism in American history; and serving consistently major looks.

Three Sannyassins dressed in red. Photo by Rainer Binder/ullstein bild via Getty Images.

Know as the “rich man’s Guru,” Bhagwan championed capitalism, and believed that monetizing his teachings would lead the movement to lasting prosperity. He didn’t shy away from materialism: he was known to wear a million-dollar diamond watch, and collected Rolls-Royces, making them the official means of transport in Rajneeshpuram. Style was a consideration in Rajneeshpuram, and with a dress code that called for members to wear “the colors of the rising or setting sun,” its residents turned it out with remarkable all-red ensembles.

Clockwise from left: A.W.A.K.E. Inside-out trench-coat dress, $1,171. Marni Pannier large leather tote, $2,690, LOEWE. Snails gold-tone, resin and shell earrings, $395. The Row, Ellen Satin Sandal, $610.

While the movement effectively died with its leader in 1990, its monochrome look is eternal—and surprisingly easy to pull off in the year 2018. Here, three New Age looks inspired by your favorite crystal carrying auntie, Sheela.

BALENCIAGA, Circle hoop earrings, $425. PROENZA SCHOULER, Peplum-hem textured-knit top, $1,196. MARINE SERRE, High-rise moire cropped trousers, MARTINIANO, Glove leather flats, $435.

Clockwise from left: THE ROW, Nancy Silk Dress, $2,650. THE ROW Bindle Nylon Shoulder Bag, $790. Exclusive ROSANTICA BY MICHELA PANERO, Inganno beaded hoop earrings, $134. ILEANA MAKRI, Diamond & yellow-gold ring, $1,609. ILEANA MAKRI, Diamond & yellow-gold ring, $790. BRIGID BLANCO, Prehnite, beryl & yellow-gold ring, $7,415. Marco de Vincenzo, Braided Velvet Slides, $625.
Rajneesh cult
Baghwan Shree Rajneesh
Ma Anand Sheela
wild wild country
new age