Chapter 20: The Rebel Has No Path
That’s why I have spoken about the middle way many times when I was contradicting the people who follow the extreme; because the extreme can never be whole, it is only one polarity. In certain contexts I have contradicted them, saying that to be on one polarity is to miss the other polarity, is to live only half of life. You will remain always with something tremendously valuable missing, and you will never know what it is. In that context I have talked about the middle way.
The man who walks the middle way, the golden mean - exactly in the middle - has both the extremes, like two wings reaching to the farthest corners. He comprehends the whole polarity in his being. He stands in the middle, but his wings reach to both the extremes simultaneously. He lives a life of wholeness.
But in another context, I have spoken against the middle way - because life is not so simple to understand. It is the most complex phenomenon in the world. It has to be, because it is the most evolved state of consciousness in the whole of existence. Its basic complexity is that you can never speak about it in its totality; you can only speak about one aspect. And when you are speaking about one aspect, you are automatically denying other aspects - or at least ignoring them - and life is a combination of all contradictions. So when you are talking about one aspect, the contradictory aspect of it - which is also part of life, as much as the aspect you are speaking about - has to be denied, negated.
To understand me means to understand everything in a certain context. Never take it out of context, otherwise you will be simply bewildered, confused. Sometime I have spoken of the middle way because, as I have told you, it comprehends the whole of life; its beauty is its totality. Sometimes I have spoken in favor of the extremes, because the extreme has its own beauty.
The life of the man who walks in the middle is always lukewarm. He is very cautious. He takes every step very calculatedly, afraid that he may move to the extreme. The man who follows the middle way cannot live passionately; he cannot burn his torch of life from both ends simultaneously. For that, one has to learn life at the extreme points. The extreme point knows intensity, but it does not know wholeness. So when I was talking about intensity, I emphasized the extremes. But these were all spoken in a certain context.
I have also said that there is no path. With the idea of a path we always conceive of highways, superhighways, which are already there - you just have to walk on them. That’s why I have been denying that there is any path.
In the world of reality, you have to create the path while walking on it. As you walk you create, by and by, a footpath; otherwise you are entering into an unknown territory with no boundaries, no pathways, no milestones. Your walking is creating a path, certainly, but you cannot follow it; you have already walked on it - that’s how it has been created.
And remember, your path is not going to be anybody else’s path, because each individual is so unique that if he follows somebody else’s path he loses his own identity, he loses his own individuality, he misses the most beautiful experience in existence.