The Jaina asks how to make one’s own self free, and the Buddhist asks how to be free of one’s own self. But these different inquiries are all accidental, borrowed. Even your questions are borrowed, your queries are borrowed. Even your inquiry is not yours. It is not true, and when you begin with an untrue inquiry you will never come to a true conclusion.
That is one of the greatest problems every seeker has to face. Don’t start with what you have heard, start with what you have felt. Can’t you feel the beauty of existence and the mystery of existence? Can’t you feel this utter poetry of existence? Have you to go into the Vedas to feel the poetry of existence? Have you to go into the Bible? Have you to ask Buddha, Christ, Krishna? Can’t you yourself see? Don’t you have eyes to see and ears to hear and a heart to feel? Then what are you doing here? What are you? Are you alive or not?
An alive person is one who will look at life, who will witness life; who will not only witness life but will witness the witness itself. And then there arises a great inquiry – “What is all this?” It is not borrowed, it is not heard from somebody else. It arises from the deepest core of your being just like a sprout arising out of a seed. Then the inquiry is not plastic; it is a real rose. And only a real rose can have a real fragrance.
There was once a woman who had heard of the fruit of heaven.
She had just heard; and when you hear you are bound to misunderstand.
Now, the “Fruit of Heaven” is just a metaphor. It is just a way of saying it, a poetic way of saying it. The ultimate truth cannot be expressed in words. No word is adequate to express it. Hence metaphors have to be used, similes have to be used, just to give you a little indication, a little taste. It is difficult to show you the truth directly, so some indirect ways and means have to be devised. Parables have to be told, stories, because stories don’t say anything directly, they only give you subtle hints, delicate hints.
The Fruit of Heaven – what does it mean? If you have heard it from somebody it simply means “fruit of heaven.” Then you start thinking of some fruit. It is not a fruit, it is fruitfulness. The fruit only represents a state of fruitfulness. The fruit represents three F’s: one is fruitfulness, another is flowering, another is fragrance. And when all these three F’s exist together – the fruit, the flower, and the fragrance – the fourth F comes into existence. That is fulfillment. That is the real goal.
Now if you try to decipher, to decode the symbol of the Fruit of Heaven, how are you going to work, how will you decode it? The Christian will think it means Kingdom of God, and the Brahmin will think it means God-realization, and the Jaina will think it means freedom of the self, and the Buddhist will think it means freedom from the self. Again you have fallen into the trap of the herd.
Be a little more intelligent. Be a little more trusting of your own being. Decode these beautiful metaphors on your own; meditate on them.