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The Attachment of Self Doubt

September 06, 2007 |   by a Western Practitioner

(Clearwisdom.net)Greetings Master,Greeting Fellow Dafa Disciples,

I have become aware that self doubt is an omission that the old forces use to interfere with my cultivation and my self confidence when I do Dafa work.

For quite some time I kept myself from volunteering to polish articles for Clearwisdom because I did not think that I had the skills for it. There is some truth that my heart for this project is definitely greater than my skill level. When I was asked to consider polishing I was doubtful of my abilities in this area because I often miss mistakes. Quite frankly, they just do not appear to me.

What I have come to realize is that I have average skill at polishing in terms of grammar, punctuation and style, but I make up for it in my general understanding of what the author is trying to say and my understanding of the Fa.

One of the most rewarding experiences I have doing Fa work is to decipher an article written by a practitioner in China, and feel that I have done my best to give that practitioner a voice in English. Sometimes I can actually feel that person near me, as if they are giving me guidance to write their words. Because I have participated in writing letters to the labor camps and prisons in China, I am fully aware of the amount and severity of abuse inflicted on practitioners. But something happens when I am actually working on someone's personal story; some kind of transformation takes place in me. In the process of transposing their paper, the people who are exposed to the evil each and every day in China, become more tangible. My awareness of one body is heightened, and I think to myself how miraculous it is that a person so far away and from such a different culture has similar understandings. We are truly one body. Under such harsh living conditions how do they find courage and kindness? I find this extraordinary. And many times the article that I am assigned to polish contain some issue that I am dealing with in my own cultivation.

There was a time when I became discouraged and began to doubt myself because my submitted articles looked like they had not been polished when I received the feedback from the editors. I felt bad that I was causing the editors so much work. I would submit the article thinking I had located all errors and yet the papers would come back with many corrections. I began to feel bogged down and no longer looked forward to polishing. Then I realized that I just needed to do the best that I could and try to learn from the feedback. I do reference the polishing manual and refer to the thesaurus and dictionary often. Now I am improving and gaining more confidence in my abilities.

I have been involved with many different aspects of Dafa truth clarifying work. I had another opportunity to face self doubt when I went to Billings, Montana to attend the Montana-China Trade Expo last spring. A group of business representatives from some of the larges companies in China had stopped in Billings during a nationwide tour. Although I was encouraged not to doubt myself by other practitioners, I found I just could not feel that job that I did in Billings clarifying the truth was good enough. I kept finding fault with my effort, even though, under the circumstances everything went well.

Self doubt provides a breeding ground for fear and questioning that interferes with situations which the old forces then capitalize on. What I personally experience is a feeling of inadequacy and not being good enough or not doing a good enough job. I know these are only human emotions at the human level, but they become very real if they are not controlled. For two weeks I struggled with these feelings, until one day I finally let them go. Because my life and cultivation path has many tribulations brought on by my inability to overcome conflict with my spouse, not long after the event in Billings, my husband asked for a divorce. When I really looked inward I realized that I had been questioning if I could actually coupe with my marriage and my living environment. Could I really forbear without attachments? And isn't forbearance about sacrifice? Was I able to sacrifice enough and overcome my tribulations? Master tells us,

"There is sacrifice in forbearance, and a complete sacrifice is a higher principle of non-omission."("Perfect Harmony" from Essentials for Further Advancement II)

Omissions were brought on by self doubt. My understanding of Master's statement is that when we completely sacrifice ourselves by forbearing, at this level of the Fa there is non-omission. I do not know at this time what complete sacrifice is. Giving up attachments, especially the attachment to self, are the part of sacrifice I have some experience in.

I have taken these series of events as a stick warning from Master. I have a great heart for cultivation and know that I am Master's disciple and that I have come here for Fa rectification-- of this I have no doubt. Now I am cultivating away the human, self important emotions of shame and humiliation having failed these tests. However, Master has told us many time,

"You have to walk your own path, and its okay to trip and fall, you know how to pick yourselves up, and you know how to treasure everything that you do, and do everything afterwards even better." ("Explaining the During the 2003 Lantern Festival at the U.S. West Fa Conference")

Master is very merciful!

I have a great heart for polishing articles and this Dafa work is helping me eliminate the attachment of self doubt, and I know I will do even better in the future.

Please correct anything that is not in alignment with the Fa.