(Clearwisdom.net) Sentimentality is a kind of matter. I have personal experience and appreciation of this. In over ten years of cultivation, aside from a couple of times when I saw Falun in other dimensions, I have not seen anything else. But I truly feel that sentimentality is a special substance. I seem to always see it as a pinkish mist floating about a person's body. But its power to delude people is considerable. Not too long ago I read an article by a fellow practitioner mentioning that in her dream she saw sentimentality as a kind of pinkish water. It seems to validate my impression of the color of sentimentality that is not purely imaginative. Another kind is like a white powdery substance that exists in the human body. It is a white powder that can arouse people's desire. For me as a cultivator, I basically equate it to the white heroin powder.

Once in a dream when I was being tested for my attachment to lust, a clear thought emerged--it is a substance, it is not me--amidst a lusty desire that seemed to have come from nowhere. As soon as the thought appeared, I felt a swoosh, and the white powdery substance rushed out from under my feet, and I felt much at ease. Then I woke up. I knew that it was indeed the evil in other dimensions casting bad substances onto me. But no matter what their excuses were, it was despicable.

When I tried to thoroughly understand it and see it for what it really is, and get away from it during my arduous and dedicated cultivation, I truly could feel that I was breaking away from the pestering and entanglement of this white and pink substance called sentimentality, one layer at a time, as I elevated myself one step at a time. The feeling was very painful, yet intriguing. During my infinitely long cultivation, when I truly felt that I had almost extricated myself from being hemmed in by this substance, and that it no longer could "control" me, the way I look at this world also changed. It is not easy to describe, but I felt that I was looking at people in this world like a child-- there was no longer any difference between a man and a woman--but wiser. When I broke away from the web of sentimentality, I truly felt that I was no longer an ordinary person. As I watched the people in the secular world who lived and died for sentimentality, it was like a bird soaring high in the sky looking down at the fish in the water below. The fish cruising happily in the water might feel that the water was soft, and cozy, and feel free and satisfied; but how would the bird look at it? The poor fish! How restrictive, and pitiful; they could not survive away from water.

Since ancient times, Chinese writing has long described the harmony between people, and between men and women as "getting along swimmingly." People feel pleased and joyous about it. But I felt a bit shocked after I extricated myself from the bondage of sentimentality. Actually Gods had already told us in our writings--What is sentimentality? It is the relationship between fish and water. Who does not know that fish has to live in water? But how painful and confining such a state is! Yet who would enlighten to the fact that people immersed in sentimentality are just as monotonous and painful as the fish.

There were times I had setbacks. My thinking was interfered with. Afterwards I felt awful. In my depressed and murky state, I realized the horror of having fallen. It was like a wounded bird with soaked wings; it would need much more effort to take off again. But it was a bird after all, and did not change into a fish, and that was a relief. Teacher said: "The truth is, you're no longer one of the ordinary human beings, and you couldn't even go back anymore, you really can't. (Applause) The difference between you and ordinary people has grown downright large." ("Teaching the Fa at the Meeting with Asia-Pacific Students") Sometimes we stumble because the evil exploits our loopholes and intensifies its persecution when we relax our guard. It is so important to always keep a clear mind, and that means no matter what, our thoughts must not depart from Dafa. What would be the use if one only studies the Fa but does not cultivate oneself accordingly?

Although to become a divine being we need to cultivate away all our attachments, what I want to say is that I have personally experienced the divine state and the wonderful realm when I had truly overcome the attachment to sentimentality between men and women, and lust. Then when I sent forth righteous thoughts and applied supernormal power, what I felt was the ease and self-confidence of the mind and body joining together. Cultivating away the attachment to lust is the first and a very important test for a cultivator. It is the dividing line between God and human. All cultivation methods since ancient times looked upon this issue the same way. Why then do we still want to be enmeshed in sentimentality and harmed by it?

It might be about a year ago, in a dream, I dreamed of a policeman abducting two male practitioners and putting them in a car. I went up and said to him: "Why do you arrest people so arbitrarily?" To my surprise the policeman flashed the bag in his hand and said to me self-righteously: "On account of this," and pointed at one of the practitioners indicating that the bag was found on him. Before I said anything, he continued: "You know what this is? A bag of condoms." I was stunned. When I recollected myself and tried to say something, I woke up. It obviously was a dream to give me a hint. But I was somewhat puzzled. Why was I given the hint? I was quite ok in this regard at the time. I thought of putting it in an article as a reminder for fellow practitioners. But because of my human attachment, I felt a bit embarrassed to write about such a dream. I did not enlighten to it at the time, but now I realize that Teacher wanted me to write an article on it. I feel sorry for those practitioners who enmesh themselves in sentimentality and let the evil take advantage of their loopholes, as the saying goes: The flood dragon is not indigenous to a pond, but once fallen into shallow waters, it can even be mocked by a shrimp.

The other day in my dream, someone gave me a pen. Before this I was adjusting the state of my mind in this regard because I was not in too good a state, and I felt that the standard required of us became higher the closer it was to the end. The slightest display of human attachment would be exploited by the evil. But I was able to tell that the surging waves of tempestuous thoughts were not me at all, and I was no longer down and confused. I was even amused by those thoughts when I kept the one thought of my true self. Soon everything became calm and peaceful. I enlightened to the fact that giving me a pen is Teacher's hint for me to write an article about my understanding on this issue.

We all know that the three realms was created for the Fa-rectification. The biggest difference between the three realms and all other dimensions in the cosmos is that there is "sentimentality" here. I felt that among all kinds of sentimentality, the most troublesome is the sentimentality between men and women, and lust. This is what I mainly refer to here as well. During my cultivating them away one layer at a time, because I found it grueling to break away from it I often pondered: "Why did divine beings create this sentimentality and lust?" Sometimes I felt that I had broken away from it, only to find that I was in the thick of it again when I woke up from the dream. Probably because at the time my sentimentality was quite strong. But now I see that many fellow practitioners have the same difficulties too.

Why did the divine beings arrange for human beings to live this way? Is it for the propagation of later generations? Of course this is the main reason. But I feel that if gods will it, children could grow from flowers or fruits on trees. Before I started cultivation I used to indulge in such rambling fanciful thoughts, but now I feel it may not be that fanciful after all. Indeed, having a different way to propagate life would not negate the living-in-delusion requirement of this dimension. But gods did not arrange it that way. They have people go forth and multiply this way, and let people have joy and love. Is it because gods were nice to people? No. On the contrary, I think it is a punishment for human beings. Because human beings have great sins, so going back up cannot be that easy after people have fallen to this level.

The substance sentimentality has a very high density. Permeating the human cells, an ordinary person submerged in it will be unable to extricate himself from it. When two people are attracted to each other, people say that there is magnetism or electricity between them. Perhaps there is. But Teacher told us, the field created when doing Dafa exercises cannot be called a magnetic or electric field. Rather it should be called an energy field. "The demon is one foot tall, while the Dao is one yard high." The words created to describe sentimentality are often related to long ribbons, such as: uninterrupted, entangled, entwined, lingering, attached, holding together, destined, etc., in order to use the long ribbon of sentimentality to firmly bind people together. With these words countless enthralling love stories of all descriptions unravel and play out in the long-drawn-out history of human society. But for a cultivator who sees through its essence, it is truly nothing, because we know that sentimentality is not part of our innate lives. It is nothing but layers of clothing and bindings that were put on us when we descended into the three realms. Once we see through its origin, particularly when we are able to tell that it is not part of our true, original self, we can cut it off with our sword of wisdom. What can sentimentality do to us?

People often relate sentimentality to predestined relationship. My thought on this is that ordinary people can only utter a sigh of helplessness when it comes to fate and sentimentality because they do not understand the principle of predestination and retribution. Before I was a cultivator, my girlfriend's marriage was the epitome of marrying someone whom she did not love, and she had no predestination for the one she loved. On the wedding day, I saw the tears in her eyes and felt the sobbing in her heart. It was a dramatic paradox for such an occasion. After seeing such incidents more than once, life only left me with the feeling of pain and sorrow. But after I began my cultivation, I realized the reason behind all this.

In fact, to the higher beings who arrange people's fate, a person's love for another person is not the most important. What is more important is whether there is a debt owed. If there is, then repayment of the debt comes first before love. Many people who owe the debt of life or sentimentality are often arranged to become the creditors' spouses to pay back their debts. Several practitioners have written articles on this subject. For those ordinary people who cannot see through this, they will feel that they are being mocked by their fate, and helpless about sentimentality. But if one can see through it, isn't sentimentality in the secular world rather meaningless? Human beings have never been able to dictate the terms. In fact what people feel as connubial bliss is but a fleeting moment of joy in one's brief existence. Let me quote a song by an ancient cultivator:

Scheming and greed for fame and profits, the world glutted. It can't compare to jaunting in a ragged monk's robe.

The caged chicken is well-fed but a stockpot is close by; a wild goose has no feed but the whole wide world.

Riches and fame can last no more than a hundred years; reincarnation is the heavenly principle, and changes go round and round

I urge you to seek cultivation soon; a human body, once lost, one may not get it back in million years.

Only the sacred relationship established with Dafa is bliss and worthy of cherishing. Only when we advance steadfastly in Dafa cultivation, consummate and go home with Teacher, would we not disappoint and could we meet the expectation of numerous lives that had all sorts of predestined relationship with us in our countless previous lives. The sentimentality and predestined relationships are like a dream. Only the benevolence of Dafa is real.

The above is my understanding. Please kindly point out anything improper.