A Wider and Better Path Ahead for Righteous Fa Cultivation
(Clearwisdom.net) I started practicing Falun Dafa in 2002. Because of Teacher's compassionate salvation, though I was surrounded by karma and human thoughts, I have gradually felt the greatness and magnificence of being on a divine path. Recalling the process of my cultivation, I would like to write down my experiences and lessons learned.
Recognizing My Fundamental Attachments
Since I started cultivation, there has been a strong but hidden force lying ahead that prevented me from striving forward. I have repeatedly looked within myself and asked, "What is my fundamental attachment?"
Recently my father, a non-practitioner who has quit the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and its affiliates, came to help me take care of my child. He has always been worried about his physical condition and suspicious of having diseases. I had grown accustomed to it, but recently my father began to discuss this in detail more and more. I said to him, "Try not to focus on it and see what happens." I realized later that this was a hint from Teacher about my own shortcomings.
I had lived away from my parents throughout my childhood. For as long as I can remember, I would try to observe others carefully so as to please them. I felt very insecure deep down, but I also went to the opposite extreme, regarding indifference and unkindness as a strength to admire. I was also vain and tended to make snap decisions, and I was always trying to manipulate people and events. It felt like throughout my life, I was miserable, mired in destructive emotions and unable to extricate myself. Just like those who came to Dafa for curing their physical illnesses, I started in practicing Dafa for the purpose of curing my mental shortcomings. In short, my fundamental attachment was to seek spiritual peace.
When I sold my house, I lost tens of thousands yuan, but I didn't let it bother me. My family members and fellow practitioners were quite impressed and praised me. However, things happened later to show that I had never really let go of my attachments to money and the house itself. I didn't obsess about the money not because I was following the Fa principles, but rather because I was seeking some kind of peace with myself. I was trying to get to a point where I could say, "See, look at how well I am doing."
The same has been true of doing three things. If one day I clarified the truth well, I would be very pleased. If I didn't do it or didn't do it well, I would be downcast. It seemed as if saving sentient beings was for the sake of my feeling good. The same has been true of doing the exercises. If I practice, I feel pain in my legs and arms, but if not, I feel pain in my heart and then decide to practice. Teacher told us to follow the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance. I had always tried to follow Teacher's words, but it was because I thought, "I would feel good about myself if I did this." The result, of course, was just the opposite. Then I would think, "Why do I still feel perturbed even though I have done well already?"
I was constantly looking out for my own feelings, and I could not even suffer a little. I eventually realized that as cultivators, we have no illnesses, nor do we harbor "qing". If we do not go look for, accept or pay attention to such emotions, demons would find no weaknesses to take advantage of. As a result, the emotions themselves would not have any effect on us, and then the cultivators would truly act as divine beings and assist Teacher to fulfill our prehistoric vows.
Notions and Qing
Many years ago, fellow practitioner G and I became close friends. Though we live far away from each other, we share our experiences over the phone every day. Recently fellow practitioner G passed by my city and stayed here for several days. We decided to clarify the truth together. This was my first experience in cooperation with a fellow practitioner.
It was about 11:00 p.m. when we brought truth-clarifying materials to a residential area. At the time, I didn't bring my cell phone with me, which later I found to be my attachment to security. I entered a building as usual, and G entered another one. I put up the materials and left quickly, and I waited for G to come out for ten minutes. It occurred to me at the time that we had not seen each other for several years, yet she still worries me so much. In the past, G often got lost and had a poor sense of direction. I always thought that she had trouble dealing with things in everyday life. That impression stayed rooted in my mind, and I didn't realize how serious it was.
We came to another residential area and distributed materials separately. When I put up truth-clarifying materials onto an information board, I saw a security guard behind me, so I went back to the entrance of the residential area alone while sending forth righteous thoughts. I sat along the street, waiting for her for one hour, but she still didn't show up. I thought maybe she had been arrested, so I started to blame myself because I didn't coordinate our efforts well. At that moment a police car with flashing lights came over. It led me to realize my attachment, and I sent forth righteous thoughts to eliminate it. After calming myself down, I returned to the place where we parted to find her but still couldn't. I waited for another hour. Various thoughts came to my mind such as self-accusation, complaints, and so on. Later, I had no choice but to go back home, where I saw G waiting for me downstairs. She did get lost, but that didn't prevent her from doing what she was supposed to do. After distributing the materials, she found her way back home successfully, and then she waited for me downstairs while sending forth righteous thoughts.
This event exposed two of my shortcomings, judging a person using preconceived notions and having strong emotions towards fellow practitioners. I regarded my fellow practitioner with old notions. Though I didn't say it out loud, it served a very bad function. While clarifying the truth, I often used my notions to make a judgment in my mind, "This person is likely to accept the truth, and that person is not likely to accept the truth." It is very dangerous when such a thought comes forth, and it may well prevent others from accepting the truth.
I learned a lesson from what happened to me that day. Once I clarified the truth to several young people who were born in the 1980s. Though they were reluctant to listen to me at the very beginning, I didn't judge them. I sent forth righteous thoughts to eliminate their bad thoughts and then clarified the truth to them. They quickly agreed to quit the CCP. When we clarify the truth without any notions, that is strong enough to melt steel.
Truly Denying the Old Forces
Teacher taught us several times about the Fa of "absolutely denying the old forces' arrangements". However, I recently found that actually I didn't understand it truly from the Fa's basis. I think that this is also a phenomenon that currently exists among many fellow practitioners. It is one of the reasons that the persecution is still going on, even though the evil has been almost completely eradicated.
My husband was a department head under the CCP's direct authority. He was one of a group of people who are closely monitored by the CCP. Several years ago, I wrote a letter to clarify the truth to his boss. When he found out, he threatened to divorce me, spoke rudely of Dafa, and even beat and cursed me. According to what I had enlightened to at that time, I was not angered or shaken by him. We have been living separately in two different locales, and he refused to listen to the facts about Dafa. Recently my husband was going to work in my area. I thought this was Teacher's merciful arrangement because I could finally clarify the truth to him and his colleagues, most of whom are members of the CCP. One day when I talked about this over the phone, he suddenly said offhandedly, "Relatives also need to be politically examined. You will be examined soon, so be cooperative."
The fact that I practice Dafa is not really a secret in my company. Many of my colleagues have listened to me clarifying the truth and urging them to quit the CCP. I realized that this was interference by the old forces. In the following days, various assumptions appeared in my mind and I just could not let them go. If there were an item about Dafa in the political examination form, I would refuse to select it. If anyone asked me to write a letter of guarantee related to Dafa, I would firmly refuse. If anyone induced me with the chance to reunite with my husband, I would not be moved. If the leaders of my company forced me to resign, I would firmly deny it. If the police arrested me, I would by no means cooperate, and I would shout loudly in the company and clarify the truth to the police who tried to persecute me. I decided to deal with the political examination with unshakable determination.
One day I was still thinking about this, and I shouted loudly in my heart, "I am not afraid!" I shouted and shouted, but then suddenly I felt that it was not right. One of Teacher's sayings came to my mind,
"If you have no fear, the factor that would make you afraid will cease to exist." ("Eliminate Your Last Attachment(s)" from Essentials for Further Advancement II)
Teacher said clearly "have no fear" instead of "not afraid"! I was attached to the political examination that had not even happened yet. It seemed that I was very righteous, but actually it was the same mistake that was made several years ago when fellow practitioners cooperated with the arrests. What is saving sentient beings about? It is the most effective way to save sentient beings when my colleagues witness that I am safe while I clarify the truth openly. I should protect those colleagues who already quit the CCP. Moreover, I should develop an open environment of clarifying the truth. From then on I just stopped thinking about that matter. I refused to accept the so-called political examination at all. Several days later the re-organization at work was canceled, and the political examination also ended.
I have been practicing cultivation in a closed state, as I cannot see anything in other dimensions and my physical body is not sensitive, either. I could barely sense the feelings about which Teacher spoke in lectures. I admired fellow practitioners very much when I heard them talking about their dreams or Teacher's hints. I always wanted to have Teacher's hints.
On the evening before July 1st, the CCP's party day, I vowed to let people see the materials for quitting the party when they got up that morning. While I was preparing the materials, the instrument I used for binding suddenly broke. As soon as I went out of the elevator, I saw the exit sign fall off. Was this Teacher's hint to warn me of danger? One practitioner's experience sharing article quickly flashed in my mind: His tire blew out while he was distributing materials, but he didn't pay attention to it and kept going and later he was reported to the police. It was raining that day, and I stood at the entrance of the building wondering if I should give up on my plan for the night. I called fellow practitioners to discuss it. Our conclusion was that Teacher will not prevent us from doing righteous things, so maybe it was my attachment to Teacher's hints that brought me this interference. I went out as planned and covered three or four residential areas. I came back home safely after distributing all the materials.
After I got rid of the attachment, Teacher really gave me hints. Once I had a dream that I was taking an exam. I finished the last essay but when I turned over the exam paper, the spelling test was still not done. I started practicing Dafa after July 20, 1999. I started to do the three things as soon as I started practicing Dafa. I am still not doing the exercises well. Once I dreamed of a mouse burrow in the heatable brick bed. Many maggots were crawling inside. What a dirty loophole it was! I dug inside and found lust deeply hidden inside. Once I dreamed of the evil chasing me. I thought of all kinds of ways to hide, but was still caught. It was then that I thought of sending forth righteous thoughts. I awoke to find that I had erected one palm to do so.
The above is my personal experiences, and my level is limited. I hope that fellow practitioners will strive forward vigorously and find their paths ahead wider and better.