Let Compassion Arise in Our Hearts and "Eliminate the Evil with Righteous Thoughts"
One day as I was about to begin my meditation, I was quietly listening to the instructions given by Master Li at the beginning of the music when the words "Compassion should arise in the heart, and the facial expression should be peaceful" suddenly penetrated the depths of my being.
It reminded me of what a fellow practitioner told me when we were sharing experiences with each other. He said that once as he was about to send forth righteous thoughts, he imagined that he would use his power of goodness (Shan) to destroy all the evil. At that moment, he could feel the formation of an entire field of righteous thought that was powerful enough to topple any mountain. He had never experienced that kind of power before. Its strength could be felt from the most microscopic level to the most macroscopic level. He felt as if he was frozen in the righteous field, filled with such benevolence, peacefulness, and tranquility.
On the surface, I appear to be very quiet and reserved, but deep down, I am actually quite impatient. Whenever I encounter a problem, especially something that did not work out the way I had envisioned, I would feel as if my heart was on fire. Oftentimes, I could not control myself. Sometimes I could tell that my demon nature was emerging, and my behavior matched a Chinese saying perfectly, "As anger arises from one's heart, one dares to do anything and turns vicious." My behavior was a combined result of the lack of benevolence and patience on my part.
Two giant demons get in the way of my cultivation. The first one is fear, and the second one is impatience. They are like two mountains that try to prevent me from progressing "toward Consummation." I had always worried about them and felt helpless. Then one day, a fellow cultivator told my wife, who is also a cultivator, "The way I see it, the boorish temper of XX (referring to me) has not fundamentally changed even a bit from the beginning of his cultivation to today." This comment startled and awakened me. I realized that a cultivator who cannot change this has not even reached the realm of an Arhat. Then how could he participate in an event as majestic, grand, and solemn as the Fa-rectification?
Therefore I started to take action to address this. When I think about eliminating the bad thoughts in my mind, I first think that I am a god as tall as the heavens and incomparably noble, with an enormous body. I then tell myself "Let compassion arise in my heart; Let compassion arise in my heart..." (the number of times that I repeat this verse varies from day to day based on my state of mind. Normally repeating 4 or 5 times is good enough to achieve the desired results). My facial expression becomes peaceful. I then start to eliminate all the bad notions in my mind, including fear, anxiety, lust, karma, imagination, exhaustion, and all the other notions or external interference, and think that they die. Then I silently repeat over and over, "Eliminate all the bad notions in my mind, including fear, anxiety, lust, karma, imagination, exhaustion, and all the other notions or external interference, and think that they die" for 5 or 10 minutes until I reach a relatively tranquil state. I then begin to send forth righteous thoughts to eliminate the evil for 5 or 10 minutes. When I send forth righteous thoughts, I try to follow the guidelines listed in the notice posted by Clearwisdom entitled "Send Forth Righteous Thoughts at Set Times." With that as a basis, sometimes I add in righteous thoughts that focus on more specific targets.
After several days of experimentation, I felt this was very effective. On top of that, reciting the scriptures, "What is Forbearance (Ren)," "A Cultivator is Naturally Part of It," "Realms," "Cultivators' Avoidances," "Beyond the Limit of Forbearance," and "Also in a Few Words" is a must for me everyday.
In my own experience, when I send forth righteous thoughts, I feel differently when I use the "Big Lotus Palm" versus the "Upright Palm." I cannot see anything at all through my Celestial Eye. However, I could feel that the results of the two gestures are different based on the way that my hands, my body and the energy around me feel. I heard fellow practitioners who have their Celestial Eyes open say that when we use the "Big Lotus Palm," the kind of supernormal abilities, instruments of Fa, and the material of energy that it brings are different from those that the "Upright Palm" brings. Hopefully fellow practitioners can provide more experience in this aspect to enhance our understanding.
In addition, for each of us when we reach a certain level, one or several obvious attachments will surface. These attachments prevent us from making progress in our cultivation. As a result, we are stuck at a certain level and cannot progress beyond or it, or we remain at a certain level for too long. We cannot make breakthroughs and elevate toward higher levels. In times like this, we need to be vigilant and try to come up with ways to break through these obstacles. In my own personal experience, at such a time, in addition to reading the Dafa books to elevate our xinxing (moral character) in general, we also need to read selective passages in Master Li's teachings that apply to the situation at hand. This way, we will be clearer in our understanding of the principles of the Fa, and we can give a more concentrated effort to make the breakthroughs through the principles of the Fa. "The Fa can reveal all attachments, the Fa can eradicate all evils, the Fa can expose and dispel all lies, and the Fa can strengthen righteous thoughts" (from the scripture "Deter Interference").
Furthermore, when I send forth righteous thoughts to eliminate the bad thoughts in my own mind, I add in all of my major attachments and eliminate them at the same time. Since I started doing this, the result has been quite positive. For example, I have tendencies to become afraid, feel impatient, imagine things, get sleepy, and feel lustful. When I send forth righteous thoughts, I focus my righteous thoughts to eliminate them.
The reason that these attachments exist is because there are substances in other dimensions that support their existence. These substances manifest themselves in this dimension as attachments. If we can eliminate these negative substances in other dimensions using righteous thoughts, the attachments that appear in this dimension will be gone as well.
Before I send forth righteous thoughts, I think of Master Li's words, "Compassion should arise in the heart, and the facial expression should be peaceful." It is because a cultivator needs to assimilate himself into Dafa and must cultivate goodness (Shan). At the same time, goodness (Shan) is also a manifestation of the power of the Buddha Fa. It can melt away everything that is bad and has endless power. Mercy is obtained through the cultivation of goodness (Shan).