Breaking Through the Old Forces' Arrangements and an Understanding Of "One Body"
A little while ago I had a great breakthrough in my cultivation. I could see many shortcomings and a few fundamental gaps and deviations in my cultivation. They seemed quite big when I enlightened to them and I could see my past cultivation over a certain period of time. It was quite difficult to bear seeing my many shortcomings and the problems I had caused. It was stirring in my heart making me very angry. I was trying to send righteous thoughts to eliminate the evil anger inside. It helped me to calm down.
I left home to run some errands. I was driving on my own and began unintentionally reflecting. I kept seeing my shortcomings and the problems I had created from many different perspectives and my heart kept breaking time and again. I knew that I was just breaking through another level and it was natural to feel that way. This did not ease the pain because the majority of the pain was out of deep regret of letting the old forces use my attachments to interfere with Master's Fa Rectification.
I had only seen a certain segment of my cultivation. I saw it as a cycle of my cultivation. I call it a cycle, as it is something I feel that I have gone through many times. The cycle refers to a process of my cultivation state that I have gone through time and again. At the beginning of the cycle my attachments are strong. They gradually become weaker and then they're gone. At the end of the cycle I always break through with an enlightenment in my cultivation. Then I would wake up the next morning and feel as though I was back at the beginning of my cycle and starting all over again.
While driving my car my broken heart turned back to anger as I began to see many of my past cycles all at once. It was all very clear and frustrating as I could see the many times the old forces had used any and all of my shortcomings at any point of my process to interfere. This was not only heart breaking, making me cry, but I was extremely angry and began punching my car steering wheel to alleviate the pain and frustration.
I felt as though I was a pond of the old forces. This was emotionally difficult to bear and found myself going to extremes. Although I calmed down and was able to see things in a more balanced way, I still felt like this cycle was something that was beyond my control.
For the next few days I felt very discouraged as I lingered in this state. I used to accept this cycle as my "process of my cultivating into a divine being", but I couldn't anymore.
Our cultivated side is separated from our human side. Yet our human side is given to us so that we may be here and take part in the Fa Rectification and save sentient beings not so the old forces can use it at every chance to cause interference.
I have had many conversations with the old forces before but they are all almost the same. They consisted of me telling them that they should not cause interference whenever I notice it. Then they would follow with some excuses that almost deceived me a number of times. Then I would remember that we are involved with the establishment of the future universe and the future of all sentient beings and the excuse of a practitioner having a shortcoming is never good enough to justify the loss that is suffered from the old forces' interference. They never had any response after that.
They angered me because the old forces used the parts of practitioners that were not cultivated, or the human things that were simply part of the cultivation process, to interfere with the Fa Rectification.
"I told them not to do this a long time ago. For any being, let alone human beings, no matter how high a being he is, as long as he's a being within the cosmos, I can rectify him during the Fa Rectification, from his fundamental nature, from the origin of his existence and from all the elements that constitute his being eliminating the impure and turning those things around."
Master has told them this. They have chosen not to listen, so each time I saw this I was very indignant towards the old forces and told them directly that I don't acknowledge what you have arranged. Yet not accepting their interference or their arrangement wasn't good enough. Not acknowledging them is what Master said in Philadelphia, "I don't even acknowledge you."
When I was preparing this sharing for another group sharing several months ago, I stopped typing, closed my eyes and told the old forces that I don't even recognize them. In an instant I found myself in nothingness. I was a little scared. What was there for me to believe in? I asked myself. After a little discomfort I thought of Master and became more scared. Quickly I told Master that I completely believed in him and nothing else. At this point I felt gong rush through my body, the dimension of nothingness filled with shining gong and I saw a Chinese character shining in my Tianmu. I examined it carefully and then wrote it down, as I didn't know what it meant.
Later some practitioners told me it meant life and birth ("Sheng"). This was a new beginning for me.
To realize that I need to have faith in Master may not sound like a realization worthy of a practitioner who has been cultivating four years during the final stages of the Fa Rectification. After not recognizing the old forces at all I found myself floating in nothingness and I was a little scared because I honestly didn't know what to believe in at first. After searching within myself, I saw why.
My faith had never been that pure. When I first read the Fa and watched Master's nine day lecture, it just made perfect sense to me. I didn't need to believe. I always told people that even if I don't believe it, it is still the Law of the universe. Even if I don't believe it, it is the truth. Master is in this world, his book is in my hands and it makes complete sense.
After Master lectured on the Fa I would just implement the principles and see their power. If I didn't understand, I would just wait until I did. Yet I never had absolute faith. When I was sitting in this dimension of nothingness, and had nothing, I saw that I hesitated to believe in Master without first giving it some thought. But once I did, I was renewed and reborn.
It seemed that fundamentally I had faith in myself to harmonize myself with Dafa. I was like the old forces, using Master's grand efforts to harmonize the things that I wanted during this time. Yet even with all my effort to do what I wanted, it still was not enough. I saw this most clearly while I was floating in nothingness. Even though I could do the right things to oppose the old forces, in the end it was still just me, all by myself, with nothing. Yet with complete faith in Master, I became a new being.
Since then I have had other experiences of breaking through the old forces' control. I had done something wrong in my cultivation that I shouldn't have. The following morning I woke up and began to study Dafa intensively. I knew that I had to get up quickly after falling. It was very uncomfortable to read but I didn't stop. I just gritted my teeth and kept reading. While studying I had consistent interference, and my heart kept hurting as the Fa I was studying showed me the shortcomings I had that caused my fall.
Despite the pain and discomfort, I clenched the book tightly and just kept reading. I knew the failed test was a result of the old forces taking advantage of my gaps that I had left uncultivated. I kept facing the attachments I saw righteously. I admitted my fault and promised to improve. Then my failed test was traced to its root and I could see the root of the problem.
When faced with a test to let go of something I wanted to hold onto I would let the surface thing go and tell Master that I wanted Zhen Shan Ren instead. This addressed the problem at the time. Yet I was failing to change the part of my heart that wanted the attachment. Even though I could tell myself not be lustful, that I am a practitioner and that I don't follow such attachments; still, the part of my heart that wanted those things was being left alone only to surface again. Now I could see how fundamentally important it was to eliminate the deviated matter in my heart instead of just refraining on the surface. It was like "changing the soup without changing the medicine."
This was very important to me as it helped me take more grounded steps in my cultivation again. I felt very grateful to have seen this about my cultivation state and felt very warm and grateful towards the old forces. The instant this feeling arose I knew right away that it was wrong. I sat confused for a moment as this enlightenment was dear to me but the old forces had guided me to it by interfering with me. They were even smiling on me and they were happy for me.
I then thought of Master and knew that my Master is Li Hongzhi. This is whom I follow. I did not like feeling grateful to the old forces, so I told Master that I followed him and directed my righteous thoughts at the portion of my heart that felt grateful to the old forces and treated it as the "medicine" that needed to be removed. All the muscles in my body tightened to the extreme. My body jolted forward and my head was pushed all the way over to the right. My ear smacked into my shoulder and I heard and felt a loud crack in my neck.
Once my body relaxed I sat to start reading again and I could see some old force beings confused and very indignant, discussing with themselves as they were frustrated with me. Over their shoulders I could see my Master watching and smiling. I really could understand their pained hearts as they really felt that they were helping me and then I destroyed the gratitude for them. They are watching a cultivator treat them this way and they are Gods. How could they accept that if they didn't believe Master? They just can't. Although I saw this situation I didn't think much about them as sentient beings, nor was I concerned for them, as they were just some kind of interference. Besides I was happier that Master was smiling at me.
There was another instance when I was going to send righteous thoughts before going to meet a practitioner. The three days prior I had studied very little or not at all. That had never happened to me before. When I closed my eyes to clean myself it was virtually impossible. There were far too many ordinary thoughts and my mind was rushing everywhere and going nowhere. Then came time to send righteous thoughts and it was impossible. I knew that it was exactly because of my lack of Fa study. I knew that tests and interference with me was for my personal cultivation, while my righteous thoughts where for Fa Rectification, and that nothing can be compared to the importance of the Fa rectification.
I told the old forces that although the most important thing for me to do was to study the Fa and that I was wrong for not doing it, it was not an excuse for them to persecute me. Even though I was wrong for not following Master's requirements, it was they who were doing the greater wrong, and I told them that I don't accept them at all. At this point it felt as though an invisible force began to push down on me. I can only describe it as direct pressure, with rapidly increasing intensity from all directions. In less then a second the intensity increased to an unbearable point and I cried out in my mind as loud as I could for Master. In an instant I was able to bear it, remain calm, oppose the old forces and have very pure and strong righteous thoughts for the remaining time of sending righteous thoughts.
After I finished I felt like a completely different person. It is one thing to describe this but to experience it was quite traumatic. My mind was empty and my heart was sad as I paced, waiting for a fellow practitioner. My eyes welled with tears as I could feel Master's compassion, but what really broke my heart was the things that had happened that were not necessary. I felt if I just had studied the Fa properly that it didn't have to happen that way. If I could have cultivated myself better in the past, these times of interference wouldn't have happened and the beings that caused this interference wouldn't have damaged their futures. Although this thought was a compassionate thought toward the old force beings, it was still wrong as it acknowledged the old forces and how they use excuses to persecute Dafa practitioners.
I still felt sad for the beings that had to be eliminated. I do not think about it too much, but it was good that I no longer hated the old forces, yet I shouldn't feel close to them either. I should just not acknowledge them or their arrangements.
I had felt that these experiences helped me to better understand our relationship with the old forces and begin to understand how to break through the old forces' arrangements. Yet this was all in relation to myself. My lack of ability to coordinate well with other practitioners still remains a significant difficulty in my cultivation.
A few fellow practitioners and I had been given the opportunity to give a presentation to a committee in our government, and I had volunteered to coordinate the presentation. On the last day before our presentation, the agenda completely changed, and based on the group's decision, the entire presentation had to change as well.
Although we had weeks to prepare, we were on a conference call past midnight trying to decide how best to handle this change in the agenda. When I look back now, I see that it was just an opportunity for us to see the manner that we coordinate things was not meeting the standard of the Fa.
Almost everyone on the call didn't seem to hold too strongly to their own desire for what should be done, and each practitioner was doing their best to be responsible for the next day's events, but most of us seemed to be just "getting the job done" and not really sincere in our hearts. Each time we had one arrangement, there was another aspect that was not resolved, so then we would rearrange the presentation and still another aspect was left undone. This happened a number of times until we had a resolution to the problem, but it depended on one practitioner stepping forward, but this practitioner did not. So then another practitioner and I both attacked the one who chose not to step forward in this particular way. We told him that if he didn't do what was needed of him, it was as if he were admitting that he didn't want to validate the Fa. This surely hurt his heart.
We were tired and frustrated and tried to manipulate him. Other practitioners quickly jumped in and corrected the situation. I immediately felt terrible, and along with the other practitioner, we apologized.
We eventually finalized the agenda for the presentation. I was to prepare slides for the main speakers, so once they emailed them to me, I began to prepare slide shows for their short speeches on my computer.
Early the next morning I finally finished the presentations and began to burn them onto a CD. When the CD was finished burning, it was impossible to read any of the information from it. I destroyed my last two CD's trying to complete it. I had no time to shower, shave or eat, so I just grabbed my shaving equipment and decided that if I had time, I would shave in the basement where I was headed. I didn't want to clarify the facts to government official's unshaven, as this would not be representing Dafa properly.
I was stuck in traffic and began to get frustrated that a whole night's work was gone with nothing to show for it. When I searched my heart I saw some attachments to my own accomplishments, making a name for myself and not truly being responsible for validating Dafa.
I ended up arriving at the meeting late. I saw a practitioner waiting in the lobby so I figured I could take the time to quickly shave. I went to the basement to shave my face in the washroom but when I was finished I cut my finger very deeply with my razor and began to bleed and I couldn't stop the bleeding. Then I got blood on my pants. I was very tired and was trying my best not to get frustrated, but everything just kept going wrong. When I saw the blood on my pants I quickly cleaned it off, but in the process got blood in a more revealing spot. I thought to myself, "Now how am I going to look?"
Then I realized again that I was really more concerned about my appearance and my own reputation and not really the reputation of Dafa and Dafa practitioners.
In Master's article "No Politics" it states,"the very reason for people to get involved in politics is their desire to make a name for themselves and for selfish gains."
I am a cultivator yet it seems that I have not fully melted into the Fa when doing Fa Rectification because I still carry that desire to make a name for myself and harbor selfish gains. There are still too many times that I am holding onto what I want when I work on Dafa projects. I was very embarrassed to read the part of Master LA lecture that stated:
"They've considered their choices the most essential, and have thought that everything I do should harmonize everything they want--they've completely reversed it."
I see now that whenever I hold onto what I think is right, or do things with attachment, it is often because I want something and I am not willing to let it go. When I look deeper I see that I am in fact using this set of circumstances, the Fa Rectification, to get what I want. It is just like the old forces. In one instance I can let go of what I want and quietly fill in gaps, then the next moment I am insisting on what I want, or trying to satisfy an attachment, thus trying to harmonize what I want.
I saw this and vowed to further eliminate my incorrect notions, wrapped some tissue around my bleeding finger and headed upstairs. My fatigue and worn out patience began to take away my confidence but while I climbed the stairs I told myself that those were all my personal cultivation issues that I must work through, but they are nothing compared to the Fa-Rectification and that the morning events would not discourage me from fully taking part in the day's events. Master is with me and I will support my fellow practitioners with all of my heart and mind and send pure and strong righteous thoughts. As I arrived at the floor of the meeting room I felt very touched in my heart and void of attachment.
Once I walked in the room though I didn't see any practitioners there. I sat for a few moments and kept looking around but no practitioners could be found. I left the room to take a look around and I found all the practitioners standing in the hallway speaking to a supportive government official. At the end of it all, the presentation had been canceled.
When I saw the group out in the hallway, I was reminded of the importance of being one body, and of proper coordination. It was not enough for me to be cultivating sincerely, but we had to really form a harmonized Dafa body by coordinating well. I do not understand this completely, but would like to share some thoughts on this issue.
The issue of true harmonized coordination has been weighing heavy on my heart for some time.
In Master's article "No Politics," it states"...politics has been filthy since its emergence." In our society today however, politics is everywhere. It is how our nations are run and people also talk about politics in the work place, politics in schools and religions, even politics between family and friends. Its just everywhere and has become the manner in which humans live. A common saying is, "well that's just politics" and it is used in any environment.
Yet we don't have politics in Dafa. Master has said we take the "great way without form." Master also said,"We don't talk about the 'unity' everyday people do, which is a forced, superficial thing." Master also said in his comments to a practitioner's article, "Different approaches are in fact the all-encompassing way in which roles are dynamically distributed in the operations of the Fa, and the Fa-power is a reflection of the one body."
When I think about it, each of these statements is very profound and gives me some understanding, but actualizing them is very hard. I can only appreciate the importance of doing so.
The manner in which beings interact, work together and accomplish things becomes a critical feature of lives at this level, and is also a major factor for the Fa at this level. So our laying a foundation for the future beings in how we coordinate is critical for the future of beings at this level, how they will work together and for the eternal existence of this level. This is the level where humans, and fallen sentient beings in the universe can cultivate back into Gods and truly go home. In Master's Question and Answer period in Los Angeles he said,
"Do you know how important this form of cultivation of today's Dafa disciples is? In the time to come, here where humans are, a human becoming a God will no longer be a myth."
If laying a proper foundation isn't done right it can cause greater problems for future beings who need to cultivate and go back to their heavens. Then it's not just a matter of this level but an issue for the many levels they need to return to.
This is only understanding it from the perspective of the future. Just as politics makes up much or our environment for beings at this level today, our coordination or the lack thereof is what makes up our Dafa body today, and as we cultivate, our ability to improve our coordination will make our Dafa body better tomorrow.
I would like to end with a quote from Master's Question and Answer period in Los Angeles. Master Li said,
"it's just like what the student who submitted the question slip brought up, how are we to do a good job cooperating and coordinating with each other--that's what Fa-rectification needs the most from Dafa disciples."