Ghost Dancers to Rajneeshees

Ghost Dancers to Rajneeshees

Cults in Oregon

A lecture by William L. Sullivan

The author of 21 books about Oregon hiking, history, and mystery, William Sullivan takes us on an illustrated tour of the utopian and religious cult movements that have spread in Oregon in the past two centuries: settlers dreaming of Polyanna, native tribes dancing to restore their power, religious cults spiriting away young women, and idealistic communes that did not always fail.

Sullivan’s latest novel, “The Case of the Reborn Bhagwan” (April 2016: Navillus Press), is a murder mystery about the fictional revival of one of Oregon’s most controversial utopian movements. The Rajneeshees built a city in Eastern Oregon’s desert in the early 1980s, but abandoned the project amid claims of attempted murder.

Sullivan writes an outdoor column for the Eugene Register-Guard and the Salem Statesman-Journal. His journal of a 1000-mile hike across Oregon, Listening for Coyote, was chosen by the Oregon Cultural Heritage Commission as one of Oregon’s “100 Books.” For more information, see

The Case of the Reborn Bhagwan (April 2016: Navillus Press), $14.95, ISBN 9781939312143