Realizing the Seriousness of My Attachments
(Clearwisdom.net) I eagerly read Teacher's new article, "Teaching the Fa in the City of Los Angeles," several times and realized that my attachment of sentimentality (qing) had become quite serious. I was especially touched by Teacher's words:
"When Dafa disciples make mistakes, they do not like to be criticized. No one can criticize them, and when someone does, it sets them off. When they are right, they don't like others bringing up things they could improve on; when they are wrong, they don't want to be criticized. They get upset as soon as others criticize. The problem is becoming pretty bad."
"If you always reject reproaches and criticism, always point your fingers at others, and always refute others' disapproval and criticism, is that cultivating? How is that cultivating? You have grown used to focusing on other people's shortcomings, and never take examining your own self seriously. When others' cultivation one day meets with success, what about you?" (Teaching the Fa in the City of Los Angeles," 2006)
After reading these words from Teacher and examining myself, I knew that this was also my biggest problem.
Before the persecution began on July 20, 1999, during a period of individual cultivation, I paid more attention to cultivating my heart-mind nature and correcting my shortcomings in various situations. While in the presence of other practitioners or ordinary people, I always paid attention to my speech and acted according to Dafa. By doing so, my shortcomings of an ordinary person were rectified and suppressed. At that time I conducted myself very well and even my family was very satisfied. My physical health and moral character improved quite well also.
After July 20, 1999, during the period of Fa-rectification, Dafa practitioners have been persecuted by the evil party. Our practitioners have cultivated while opposing the persecution and clarifying the facts. We have faced the issues of how to remove our attachments of fear and enhance our righteous thoughts, and we have clarified the facts to people who did not know about Dafa. When facing everyday people's misunderstandings and accusations, although we didn't argue, our attachments of fighting, hatred, complaining, self-defense, and so on slowly and unconsciously developed. Since 2004, my attachment to not allowing people to reproach or criticize me has obviously emerged.
At the beginning, the problem appeared in family matters and daily life. I didn't allow my family members to talk about any of their misunderstandings concerning Dafa or Dafa practitioners. I also didn't allow my family members to restrict my contact with other practitioners. As time went on, I couldn't tolerate any reproach or criticism about anything, including matters of daily life, from my family members. By 2005, the problem had become so serious that even I was shocked at myself. As soon as anyone in my family criticized me, it would set me off and I would even argue with them quite loudly. My behavior, indeed, was certainly not that of a cultivator. No wonder my husband angrily said, "How could it be that the more you cultivate, the worse you have become? Now your behavior is much worse than a few years ago."
Among practitioners, I could usually accept the kind criticisms from those who co-operated well with me during activities validating Dafa. However, when those practitioners that I thought didn't cultivate well criticized me, I couldn't endure it at all. When they irritated my most sensitive attachment of "self-respect," I easily showed the feelings of dissatisfaction on my face. I might not argue with them at the time, but I would hold the anger in my heart. Later I would express my grievances to other practitioners privately instead of removing my exposed attachments.
I was taken advantage of by the evil that unceasingly expanded my attachments so that it could achieve its purpose of controlling me. After each time I became angry, I always asked myself, "How could this happen? Why couldn't I control myself?"
After tracing the root of my attachments, I enlightened to several points.
1. The Rigid Notions Formed While Growing Up
I was a child who received plenty of love from my parents. At school, I was a good student, and many teachers loved me. I have been a highly respected teacher in a university for several decades. I have always tried to do a good job either in my home or in society, so I was relatively competitive. I always wanted others to accept me as a "good person" and I especially wanted people to respect me, although I didn't want to become famous. In reality, I truly received more praise than criticism. Therefore, I formed the very bad habit of regarding myself as infallible and always pointing out other people's shortcomings. I didn't like hearing other people's reproaches and criticisms of me. I have worked hard in my home and community to obtain other people's affirmation and respect. As a result, I formed a rigid notion of defensiveness. In the course of cultivation, I only removed part of this attachment, but not the root of this attachment. Therefore, it is just as Teacher states,
"But as cultivation is lived out, when the suffering bears down on you and conflicts come up that hit upon the deepest part of you--and especially when it rattles the rigid notions you have--the test is really hard to pass. It can even be to the point that you know full well it's a test but still can't let go of your attachments." ("The Closer to the End, the More Diligent You Should Be")
2. Poisoned by the Communist Party's Evil Thoughts
From the time that I first started school, the Chinese Communist Party instilled in me the "struggling" philosophy. It was this way for several decades. The Chinese Communist Party has always vigorously protected itself by lying to the people and by not permitting us to point out its wrongdoings. I was poisoned by the evil party with its vicious thoughts for many years and thus developed the mentalities of self-importance and defensiveness.
3. The Extreme Manifestation of Pursuing Sentiments
The cruel facts and unceasing promotion of the evil persecution of Dafa practitioners are continually being exposed. Sometimes, the cultivation environment was very difficult due to the pressures of my individual hardships as well as the evil's madness. This bad environment should be a good place for practitioners to improve their xinxing and confidently face the evil. However I always, either knowingly or unknowingly, rejected the difficulty. Subconsciously, I held onto my hatred of the old forces' interference with Fa-rectification and to the evil authorities persecution of Dafa practitioners. I also was upset with those who refused to learn the facts. Therefore, my impetuous mood emerged. Running into a conflict among practitioners, it was impossible for me to remain calm. Among my relatives, my behavior was the same. Since I was buried in my loved ones' sentiments, when I clarified the truth about Dafa to our relatives, the results were not good either. I also liked to be involved in ordinary people's business. When encountering a conflict, I didn't find my own problems but instead picked on someone else. This was because I pursued the attachment of complaining. While involved in conflicts with my daughter, I always felt that she didn't pay me enough respect, so I often felt indignant. Frequently, my heart was easily moved by ordinary people, because at that time, I became an ordinary person.
After reading Teacher's new article, I have realized the seriousness and danger of my attachments. I must remove my ordinary people's notions as soon as possible and remove the bad habits that have developed over many years. I should truly walk away from my attachments of sentimentality and become a true Dafa practitioner.