All the religions emphasize the opposite; all the religions try to prove that they are the most ancient – to be an ancient religion is a great value. The reality is, the more ancient a religion is, the more rotten it is bound to be. The more ancient, the farther away from you. There is no question of following any ancient way. You should not follow even a modern way, because all ways that are created by others may only be suitable for them.
This is a great challenge of existence, that you have to create your own path to your own temple. No help is possible, and it is the grandeur of humanity, a tremendous dignity, that you can follow only your own path.
All religions are leading people wrongly; they are destroying people, making them into sheep. An authentic religion will make a man into a lion who walks alone, who never walks in a crowd. The crowd never suits him, because with the crowd you have always to compromise. With the crowd you have always to listen to others: their criticism, their appraisal, their conceptions of right and wrong, their values of good and bad.
In the crowd you cannot remain natural. The crowd is a very unnatural environment. Unless you are very aware, the crowd is going to crush you into dust. It is because of this that you don’t find many buddhas in the world. A buddha has to fight inch by inch for his individuality. He has not to give way to the crowd, whatever the cost. Unless such an uncompromising attitude remains constantly in you, you cannot remain unaffected by the crowd in which you live.
And unfortunately everybody is born in a crowd – the parents, the teachers, the neighbors. Nobody is fortunate enough to be born alone, so that is out of the question. You are born in the society, in the crowd. Unless you can keep your intelligence clean of the pollution that will be surrounding you from every side, sooner or later you will become somebody else, somebody who nature had never intended you to be.
Remember constantly that you have your own destiny, just as everybody else has his own destiny. Unless you become the flower, the seeds of which you have been carrying within you, you will not feel blissfulness, fulfillment, contentment, you will not be able to dance in the wind, in the rain, in the sun. You can be in paradise only as an individual, if you have followed the path that you create by walking in. There are no ready-made pathways.
When you enter in, you enter into pure space – not a road; there are not even footprints. Buddha used to say that the inner world is just like the sky. The birds fly but they don’t leave their footprints. Nobody can follow their footprints because in the sky their footprints are not; as they have flown away, their footprints have dissolved.
The inner sky remains always pure, just waiting for you, because nobody can get inside you. He is saying:
“You must travel a living road on your own.