To be an individual is the greatest courage….OSHO
In a society, there is a deep expectation that you will behave exactly like others. The moment you behave a little bit differently you become a stranger, and people are very much afraid of strangers.
People are continuously wanting to be in a crowd in which they fit. The moment you behave differently the whole crowd becomes suspicious; something is going wrong.
And the society does not tolerate anybody who falls out of the fold because the society lives by numbers; it is a politics of numbers. When there are many numbers people feel good. Vast numbers make people feel that they must be right — they cannot be wrong, millions of people are with them.
And when they are left alone great doubts start arising: Nobody is with me. What is the guarantee that I am right?"
That's why I say that in this world, to be an individual is the greatest courage.
The most fearless grounding is needed to be an individual: "It does not matter that the whole world is against me. What matters is that my experience is valid. I don't look at the numbers, at how many people are with me. I look at the validity of my experience — at whether I am just repeating somebody else's words like a parrot, or the source of my statements is in my own experience.
If it is in my own experience, if it is part of my blood and bones and marrow, then the whole world can be on one side; still, I am right and they are wrong. It doesn't matter. I don't need their votes for me in order to feel right. Only people who have the opinions of others need the support of others."
That's how human society has functioned up to now. That's how they keep you within the fold. If they are sad, you have to be sad; if they are miserable, you have to be miserable. Whatever they are, you have to be the same.
Difference is not allowed because difference ultimately leads to individuals, uniqueness. And society is very much afraid of individuals and uniqueness because that means somebody has become independent of the crowd, he does not care a bit about the crowd. Your gods, your temples, your priests, your scriptures, all have become meaningless for him.
Now he has his own being and his own way, his own style — to live, to die, to celebrate, to sing, to dance. He has come home.
And nobody can come home with a crowd.
Everybody can come home only alone.