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Kathleen Irene Akin (Madhuri) Papers

Identifier: yhm-spe-com-mad

Scope and Contents

Diaries and dream journals; personal correspondence; flat artifacts (e.g. business cards, records of transactions, certificates and awards); artwork; poems and stories, in both manuscript and published forms. Researchers may gain insight into the functionings of the Rajneeshpuram communal society in the late 20th century, as well as the life of a member after the collapse of the society.


  • 1967-2012


Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions governing access to this collection.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright restrictions may apply. Unpublished manuscripts are protected by copyright. Permission to publish, quote, or reproduce must be secured from the repository and the copyright holder.

Biographical / Historical

Kathleen (Katy) Irene Akin (1952- ), also known as Irene Zelle Kathleen Akin or, later, Ma Prem Madhuri, was born in 1952 and spent her teenage years attending the alternative-education-based Free School in Riverside, California. At age 21, she was working as a poet in San Franciso, and visited Bombay with her mother. Shortly thereafter, by mid-1974, she returned to India, this time to stay: she joined the Poona-based commune led by master mystic Osho. While she was there, her first book, "Impassioned Cows by Moonlight," was published in New York, and she struggled with and overcame anorexia and sex addiction.

In 1981, Osho left India for medical treatment. Madhuri followed him to New Jersey and then to Rajneeshpuram, Oregon, where he had a second commune, called the Ranch. The Ranch collapsed in 1986 when Osho was arrested; upon his release, he returned to India, and Madhuri briefly followed, then left to travel the world. She spent time working as a psychic reader in Norway, New Zealand, Japan, Switzerland, and China, before returning to Oregon to live with her mother as the result of worsening health.

In 2003, a friend gave her a ticket back to India, where she recieved emergency surgery to remove a benign but cytotoxic tumor from her brain lining. She made a complete recovery, and travelled to Hawaii and then Switzerland. That near-death experience, as well as her spiritual teachings and many lovers, are the topics of the bulks of her published works, primarily memoirs and collections of poetry and short prose.


7.5 Linear Feet (6 standard archival records center boxes, 1 half box, 4 binder boxes, and 1 four flap)

Language of Materials


Spanish; Castilian


The Kathleen Irene Akin (Madhuri) Papers are the personal journals, correspondences, writings, and photographs of a longtime member of the Rajneeshpuram communal society, containing records from before, during, and after her memberships. Of particular note are a detailed account of the death of the leader of the society, a diary entry written on 9/11/01 recording the events as they unfolded, and detailed notes on the beliefs of the society.


The Kathleen Irene Akin (Madhuri) Papers are arranged by medium type, and then in chronological order within medium types. The papers are divided into six series: I.) Diaries, Journals, and Scrapbook; II.) Correspondence; III.) Artifacts, Ephemera, and Drawings; IV.) Publications and Stories; V.)Poetry, Cookbook, and Genealogy; VI.) Photographs and Artwork.

Original order was maintained as it was received by the creator. Oversized items (drawings and photographs) have been removed to a four-flap.

Dana Goettler
Summer 2022
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Hamilton College Special Collections Repository

Hamilton College
198 College Hill Road
Clinton NY 13323 United States