Reflections Inspired by a Jackfruit

A Practitioner from Taiwan

PureInsight | July 9, 2001

It was the first time I ever saw a jackfruit. One day, a family member brought one home and told me its name. When I saw the veins in its flesh, I suddenly felt that it was so similar to the acupuncture system in a human body. They were not much different. I felt that was a life with a personal soul as well.

My mother used the seeds of the jackfruit to make soup. As I tasted the soup I just blurted out some comments that seemed to come from nowhere. Since I had just seen a jackfruit for the first time, I asked my parents, "Are jackfruits a tonic?" And "I found it contains many good things, so it must be true that only noble people should be eligible for its consumption." "We must not be greedy in eating it—perhaps a couple of people should share one, because just one seed of it has so many good things. It would be wasted if human body can not assimilate it all." "If only the water quality and soil were better, the pulp will be more delicate, more gorgeous;" "It must have been a no easy job for this one to grow so well, because I feel this plant has a special quality which is real."

My parents always thought that my thinking was quite different from that of most people. But this time, unexpectedly, they listened to what I said.

If I were a jack fruit farmer, I would ask my buyers to cut back on their purchases. If a person wanted me to mass-produce this fruit, I would definitely reject the idea. Isn't it a joke? This is a life. How could it be mass-produced in the any set amount? If anyone insisted on doing that, it would be bound to change its original nature, making it watered down and therefore falling short of its inherent optimum quality. Producing jackfruits in quantity goes against its nature, and is cruel in and of itself.

The harvest is decided by Heaven, but human beings always believe they own everything. When a person owns a plot of land, he will think that land is his own property, rather than the Heaven's. He will also take the harvest from that land as his own possession, instead of something "placed" by Heaven into that particular spot. The harvest, which is life itself, is a gift from Heaven unto human beings. The human beings should be most humbly grateful to the Heaven—how can he take those things as his own?

Mass production is in itself a form of disrespect for life. In modern times, everything is geared to maximize production, especially of items that are used only once and then thrown away.. Some people even mass-produce butterflies. But everything has a soul. So many beings are being plundered, one by one, without mercy. Those people who do not respect other beings, will not truly understand the dignity of their own lives. People living in this modern era have become decadent and debauched, a result of the quest for profits from over-production. And the human beings are setting their eyes on duplicating themselves. How lamentable this is!

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