Avoid Going Astray in Cultivation through Clearly Understanding the Fa
(Clearwisdom.net) Once I met over a hundred Dafa practitioners while in detention. I noticed that only a limited number of them clearly understood the Fa principles. This made me very sad. With so many bewildered thoughts, how could they not have stumbled!
Lacking the habit of looking within
There is an elderly Dafa practitioner who is very steadfast in his belief in the Fa. He had overcome many tribulations of life and death. When he was being shocked with multiple electric batons, he still shouted, "Falun Dafa is great!" However, he had been persecuted multiple times and incarcerated for as long as five years. When I asked him what loopholes caused him to be detained here, he did not know. Although I helped him find his gaps, it was, after all, not he himself who had dug out his own attachments through searching within himself.
Some practitioners have a very smooth path of cultivation, and they seldom experience any persecution. They have developed the habit of looking within every day and correcting their shortcomings in a timely manner. If one is not careful about one's minor attachments, the evil will take advantage of this gap in the practitioner's understanding and exacerbate the practitioner's attachments, eventually causing the practitioner to be persecuted. However, some practitioners still do not search within even after they have lost their freedom. Master has said,
"Imprisoned as you are,
don't be sorrowful or sad
Carry on with righteous thoughts and actions,
and the Fa is with you
Calmly reflect on the attachments you have
Remove your human thoughts
and evil will naturally die out"
("Don't Be Sad" in Hong Yin II)
When one has gotten rid of human attachments, the evil will no longer come to interfere. Master told us:
"So, when you meet with ordeals, it is the perfect opportunity for you to improve. If you are able to look inside, that trying situation will become instead an opportunity, something to overcome and a chance to enter a new state. Why haven't you looked at things that way? As soon as you meet with an ordeal, you push it away." ("Fa Teaching at the 2008 New York Conference," May 24, 2008)
Master has always emphasized the importance of looking within, which is essential for a cultivator to have righteous thoughts and actions.
Incorrect understanding of righteous thoughts
I talked to one practitioner who had been seized by the police for the second time. He could have gotten away when the police arrived at his home to get him, but he thought, "I am a Dafa practitioner. How could I be afraid of them?" He was then taken away by the police and given a jail term of two years.
The practitioner's thought was, of course, not wrong from the perspective of the Fa. Master told us:
"Indestructible righteous faith in the cosmos's Truth forms benevolent Dafa disciples' rock-solid, Diamond-Like Bodies, it frightens all evil, and the light of Truth it emanates makes the unrighteous elements in all beings' thoughts disintegrate. However strong the righteous thoughts are, that's how great the power is." ("Also in a Few Words" in Essentials for Further Advancement II)
When the evil comes, whether the practitioner's righteous thoughts are strong and whether they meets the requirement is critically important. Otherwise, these thoughts will not play the role of righteous thoughts. Many practitioners sent righteous thoughts when they were tortured, but they could not feel the effectiveness of their righteous thoughts, so they became confused.
"When you are persecuted in any way you can use righteous thoughts to turn the tables on the bad people and stop the persecution. And this includes those who assault the students with punches and kicks: strong righteous thoughts can make the person's punches and kicks land on himself, or make the wicked policemen and the bad people lash out against each other, and they can transfer all the pain and injuries over to the wicked person or policeman who assaults you. But the premise is that you have strong righteous thoughts, no fear, and no human attachments, apprehension, or hatred; only when you're in that state will it be effective, and it will take effect as soon as your thoughts emerge. While sending righteous thoughts, don't panic or be afraid, and as long as that wicked person keeps being violent, keep sending righteous thoughts." ("Stop the Evil Acts with Righteous Thoughts," February 15, 2004)
I came to understand the cause of failure of these righteous thoughts when one is being tortured by the evil: One has too many human notions, which is far from Master's requirements on sending forth righteous thoughts. This is because one has not cultivated himself solidly. A Dafa practitioner's powerful righteous thoughts, which can cleave a mountain, come from one's incomparably strong faith in Master and Dafa and from one's clear understandings of the Fa principles.
For example, when the authorities forced a practitioner to stand for a long duration, he just stood all day long enduring the pain, as if he were resisting the evil. He was, in fact, resisting the persecution while enduring the persecution. So one can imagine the effectiveness of these righteous thoughts. We should not even have the thought of standing there; we just do not stand, we just want freedom, and we just want to get out. Some practitioners were satisfied when they had the freedom to read the Fa and practice the exercises where they were being detained. They also believed that they had done pretty well. Master has taught us the Fa of the cosmos. Who is qualified to not let us study the Fa? Wherever we study the Fa, it should not be in a place where we have no freedom. Only Master can decide how we walk our paths and only Master's words count. How could the evil be qualified to arrange our path of cultivation?
Lack of the understanding of personal cultivation and Fa-rectification period cultivation
Some practitioners worked very hard doing forced labor in places of detention. There were even some who said, "We have plenty of energy." They even criticized those practitioners who resisted the physical persecution and refused to do any forced labor. They claimed that we needed to be good people. Some practitioners even said, "You do not work hard, so other practitioners have to do the work for you." There were even practitioners who did whatever the authorities told them to do. A Dafa practitioner should not cooperate with the evil and follow its demands, orders, or instructions under any circumstances. We are the Fa-rectification period Dafa disciples.
It is a disgrace that the greatest beings of the cosmos are being persecuted. This is due to the degeneration of the cosmos, and this is a monstrous crime that the old forces have committed. We need to rectify everything that is not righteous, as we are Fa-rectification Dafa disciples.
"A Dafa disciple who fails to achieve the effect of safeguarding and upholding Dafa has no way of reaching Consummation, because your cultivation is different from that of the past and the future. Therein lies the magnificence of a Dafa disciple." ("Fa-Rectification Period Dafa Disciples" in Essentials for Further Advancement II)
Having an unclear understanding of the relationship between sickness karma and the persecution
Quite a number of practitioners took medication when they were persecuted, and they even experienced serious health issues. Some mistakenly thought that they were experiencing the elimination of sickness karma and did not realize that this very thought of theirs had become an excuse for the evil to further persecute them in the form of sickness karma, as they themselves had taken it as "sickness karma" rather than a form of persecution. Isn't this the same as your asking for it? In this way, the evil not only persecutes you physically and mentally, it also persecutes you financially.
One practitioner was very weak during the persecution, so he took medicine and got injections. Once he suffered so much from heart pain that he suddenly fell to the floor. Later, I exchanged views with him on this issue. He said, "Now I don't know what to do. I sent righteous thoughts and I also resorted to benevolent solutions, but nothing worked." He was very disheartened. I asked him what he had meant by benevolent solutions. He answered, "I would rather give up my heart or replace it with another one in order to save the being that caused me pain."
I told him that this was his problem. "You let your heart, rather than yourself, make the decision. This is what the evil wishes for, as it took this chance to persecute you. A benevolent solution is not resolved this way! How could your sending righteous thoughts still work after you had acknowledged the evil's persecution? You have not fundamentally disintegrated the evil, not to mention that you always want to get out of here by way of having sickness! You are not clear on the Fa." He understood the issue after listening to my words.
Without studying the Fa diligently, there is no Fa in our minds
After I contacted a large number of practitioners who had been persecuted, I found that many of them could not recite the Fa from memory. Some did not read the Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party. Some even used the Party's jargon whenever they spoke. They were not happy when others pointed out their shortcomings. Many of us have already cultivated for over ten years, but many still cannot recite even one sentence of the Fa from memory. In fact, Master asked us to learn to recite the Fa by heart a long time ago. When the Fa Conference in Changchun City was held, many practitioners recited the Fa from memory. After one practitioner recited one paragraph, another practitioner recited the next. If one word was recited incorrectly, the practitioner would start over and recite the whole paragraph again. They were really admirable for having cultivated themselves so diligently--they were as mighty lions!
"Why do I tell you to study, read, and memorize Zhuan Falun? To guide your cultivation!" ("What is Cultivation Practice?" in Essentials for Further Advancement)
We stumbled many times, but we did not know the cause or why we had stumbled. This is all because we have not put the Fa in our minds and we have not solidly cultivated ourselves well.
Please point out anything that is incorrect in my understanding.