Only by Truly Cultivating Ourselves Can We Better Save Sentient Beings
(Clearwisdom.net) Some time ago, other than going to work, I spent all my time doing the three things and thought myself to be an earnest practitioner. Later, when I discovered many attachments, I found my xinxing was not high. I quietly thought about it. Doing Dafa work is not equivalent to cultivation. We should continuously get rid of our attachments and improve our xinxing while doing Dafa work and in our daily lives. Otherwise, our effectiveness in doing Dafa work could suffer.
I was deeply moved by an article I read on the Minghui Website (Chinese version of Clearwisdom.net). The practitioner's discipline for looking inward, rejecting and eliminating attachments shocked and awoke me. I made up my mind to eliminate all my attachments.
I had a dream about a public restroom that was very dirty, while our bathroom at home was very clean and even had cushions covering the floor. A person wanted to use our bathroom, but I didn't want the cushions to get dirty. I went to pick up the cushions and found a pile of feces under them. I realized that Master was giving me a hint. I only did well superficially, and my attachments were hidden underneath. So I searched inward and found a lot of attachments, including fame, gain, sentiment, fear, competitiveness, jealousy, show-off mentality, selfishness, lust, and anger. Upon discovering these, I used the my free time, such as walking, cooking, and the time before sending forth righteous thoughts, to reject and eliminate them.
I was seriously affected by the human sentiment of love for my daughter and did not search inward. I thought that she was very pure-minded and adorable. I sensed this attachment a long time ago, but I did not really pay attention to it or make up my mind to eliminate it. When she left home to go study in another city, I was seriously affected by this sentimentality. I could not concentrate at all. It felt like my heart was being cut into pieces. To eliminate this sentiment, I continued to recite, "evil qing is destroyed, I don't want it." Gradually, I quieted down. I felt that a chunk of stuff which pressed on my mind was removed and I was much more relaxed.
"Being diligent means that he is able to watch his words and actions closely every moment, pay close attention to his thoughts, and is able to be strict with himself, and is usually able to conduct himself strictly. That describes someone who is diligent in cultivation." ("Teaching the Fa at the Fa Conference at the U.S. Capital")
From Master's words, I found that some thoughts to protect myself had become so natural that I could not sense them if I did not pay special attention.
Once a fellow practitioner brought a booklet and said to me, "So-and-so wrote it. It just arrived." I asked, "Who is So-and-so?" The fellow practitioner was astonished and said, "Don't you know? Why, So-and-so is ...." I was kind of embarrassed and asked another practitioner, "Do you know So-and-so?" The practitioner said, "I don't know that person, either." Suddenly, I felt much more comfortable and said, "Right, why should we know so much? The only things that we should know are to study the Fa better, and do the "three things" well." A few words from the fellow practitioner brought out so many of my own words without any thought. After the practitioner pointed this out, I understood that I should not behave like that. In order to protect my vanity, ego, and attachment to fame, I tried to form a small group to fight against the person who stimulated my attachment. The incident also exposed my attachment to competitiveness.
When I went home for lunch, I met my landlord. He greeted me and said, "Are you off from work?" I immediately replied, "It's not early any more. It's already 11 o'clock." There was an attachment buried deep in my mind that I was concerned that he would increase my rent if he saw I had an easy business. So when he questioned me, I immediately answered without thinking, and hidden in my words was my desire to protect myself from loss. Oh, how complicated human thoughts are! With such a dirty mind, how could my words be powerful and reach people's sacred, microscopic dimensions when I clarified the truth?
"Because pain is hard on people, they try to, consciously or unconsciously, ward off suffering in hopes of leading a more pleasant life. And so it is that in the pursuit of happiness people form ideas about how to avoid harm, how to live well, how to get ahead in society and achieve fame and success, how to acquire more for themselves, how to come out on top, and so on. To this end, as they gain experience people come to form notions about life; and those experiences, in turn, come to fortify these notions as people live out their lives." ("The Closer to the End, the More Diligent You Should Be")
Master said in "Cautionary Advice" from Essentials for Further Advancement:
"If you do not change the human logic that you, as an ordinary human, have formed deep in your bones over thousands of years, you will be unable to break away from this superficial human shell and reach Consummation."
"In practicing cultivation, you are not making real, solid progress on your own, which would effect great, fundamental changes internally. Instead, you rely on my power and take advantage of powerful external factors. This can never transform your human nature into Buddha-nature."
How can we completely change our human mentalities? We must treat difficulties as good things, treat those who hurt us as helping us and search inward with appreciation, be willing to listen to words that are painful to hear, accept ideas other than our own, realize everything with compassion, not put ourselves before others, not think our opinions are the most important, give up selfishness and be merciful, etc.
Once, I asked a fellow practitioner, "Why don't I change much?" His answer impressed me, "I just think about other people. I only consider others without considering myself. After that, I started to change."
We must cultivate ourselves well! Only after we cultivate ourselves better, will we achieve a high attainment status, purify our fields, and be capable of truly saving sentient beings.
October 26, 2006