Another Discussion on Selfishness
(Clearwisdom.net) Recently, a Dafa practitioner from my county was forced to attend a brainwashing session and was illegally sentenced to prison for the third time. The two previous times, he was sentenced to a total of five years in prison and suffered inhuman torture there. Not long after he got out of prison, he was arrested and sent to a brainwashing session again. After that he was illegally sentenced to two years. I finally saw my apathy at that point, and I felt extremely guilty and sad. I strongly felt the selfish mentality deep in my body.
In the past, when I saw Minghui's reports about persecution cases in different regions and the constantly increasing number of cases where practitioners were tortured to death, I always felt that they were far away from me and there was not much I could do. I always felt that there would be others to rescue fellow practitioners. I thought that if one had righteous thoughts, he would be safe, and be able to negate the old forces and walk the path arranged by Master. In short, I pushed most of the responsibility for negating and disintegrating the old forces to fellow practitioners, as if what I needed to do were just things around me and cultivating myself well. This is a big attachment of selfishness, and it creates a huge distance between fellow practitioners.
For example, when I study the Fa, I often use my own judgment to pick the lectures I think are better. In my mind, I frequently hope for Master's new writings to be published. When I write something, I like to cite Master's words to support my own points and try to make them more persuasive. When I do the three things like a Dafa disciple should, I want fellow practitioners to know about it, and I like to hear encouraging words from fellow practitioners. I also like to drop hints for fellow practitioners to criticize me and thus show my "tolerance". Whenever my cultivation gets a little better, I would talk about my feelings at length in front of fellow practitioners, and when it is not good, I would try to avoid talking about it. I would intentionally show off after having a dream that I perceive to be significant. The more I cultivate, the more I feel that I am so shallow and hypocritical.
This fellow practitioner called me before he was arrested. He told me that he was interfered with by the evil factors and hoped that I and other fellow practitioners could send forth righteous thoughts for him. I agreed and also did it. However, I still had that thought in my mind, hoping that he could get through it by himself. Thus when I sent righteous thoughts for him, my thoughts were not very pure, strong, or compassionate. The selfish factors constrained the effect. This fellow practitioner was arrested, subjected to brainwashing, and then sent to forced labor. We did not even know about it at the time. Later, we discussed how we would rescue him but did not reach a definite resolution. We again began to talk about our own tribulations and difficulties, and things we just enlightened on, etc. It was again that strong selfish mentality that was magnified by the old forces. When there was a big gap among fellow practitioners and damage was being done by the old forces, we did not even notice. We put all the responsibility on the old forces and others. We were searching within, but it was just for self improvement. We talked about how we could form a harmonized and indestructible body, but in action we did not advance on this at all and were not in a true cultivation state. The weekly Fa study was becoming a formality. Though in different degrees we did give up some attachments and we all made some improvements, ultimately the root causes were not touched upon. In this path of assisting Master during Fa-rectification, our group was disorganized and passive. Even at this moment as I am writing, I still find that I have thoughts of complaining to fellow practitioners. However, I still have to point out that every practitioner in our area has the issues I mentioned above to some degree. To my understanding, the reason for searching within and cultivating oneself is to be better assimilate to the Fa and to be able to do better in saving sentient beings. The goal should not be how "I" can improve or how "I" can go save others and become a greater being. It should be others first before self. One has to achieve this in the process of giving up selfishness. The beings who are completely selfless are so broad-minded and magnanimous. However, a lot of times we have fallen short of this. If we cannot let go of selfishness, we cannot really reach a pure state that a Dafa practitioner should. If it were not for Master being compassionate and continually giving us more and more chances, what could we have accomplished and what could we have obtained?
There are many times when we are stuck with cultivation at the superficial level. In order to guarantee "keeping up" with the Fa-rectification process, we did things on the basis of formality but did not actually cultivate ourselves. In this way, there is a lack of deeper understanding of the Fa, and we do not have the compassion or righteous thoughts of Dafa practitioners. That is the reason that we have the attachment of discrimination when we do the three things - who is easier to save, whether it is a method I like for saving sentient beings, who cannot be saved according to us, and so on. This further encourages the growth of human attachments and demonic nature, and in the end we cannot even rescue fellow practitioners who are being persecuted. It may be true that when a practitioner gets arrested, he probably has some issues that placed him at risk, but the rest of us cannot be so negative and passive as fellow practitioners in the Fa-rectification process. When we received the information, although we quickly put it on Minghui, subconsciously we were still trying to push responsibility toward other fellow practitioners instead of taking real actions ourselves. It was again selfishness, which then evolved into the attachment of fear, anxiety, and suspicion.
My main purpose for writing this article was to expose the attachment of selfishness in myself, as the old forces have used it to cause problems. I am not blaming fellow practitioners. I just hope that the whole body of Dafa practitioners can be stronger and purer. The sides of us which have not been fully cultivated must face the old forces with clear minds and eliminate them.
If anything is inappropriate, please kindly point it out.