Abandoning the Attachment of Showing Off and Cultivating Speech While Helping Others Improve
(Clearwisdom.net) I was fortunate to start practicing Falun Dafa in 1994. Master has never stopped arranging for other practitioners to stay in contact with me and share understandings together, and we have been able to maintain contact, even during the darkest periods of the persecution. Sharing experiences has helped us form an environment of comparison while studying and cultivating, exposed my attachment of showing off, and pointed out my poor cultivation of speech. Hints from other practitioners have made it possible for me to improve.
During our sessions we tend to share openly whatever we have seen with our third eyes, and any of our dreams and understandings. We have good intentions of encouraging each other to advance diligently, but it has also exposed our poor cultivation of speech. For example, my intentions to point out others' shortcomings were well-intended, but I went to great lengths to explain things, as if I had a better understanding. I envied practitioners who did well in cultivation of speech. But as soon as it came to speaking with other practitioners I just couldn't stop talking, even though I regreted it afterwards.
An assistant told me prior to the persecution that a lock came from the heavens and locked her mouth up. So, I asked Master sincerely, "Master, would you please lock my mouth too?" One day while sending righteous thoughts, I saw a big mouth suddenly shrinking to half its size. I told myself, "Master didn't lock my mouth entirely, leaving half of it, so I can clarify the truth to people and save them." I now understand that the other half was left for me to cultivate and remove what needs to be abandoned myself.
During that time Master gave me hints three times. The first time I saw an empty, neckless bottle without a lid, with the character "Envy" written beneath the opening of the bottle. The second time I saw the Fa vessel arriving. I had everyone on the platform board the vessel. Everyone had boarded but me, and I alone was still standing on the platform. The third time I was organizing dinner in a dining hall. Food was placed on every table, and I seated each practitioner that came in, to enjoy the food. I only took a few bites in a hurry. When it was over I returned to my hotel and found everyone gone. I hurriedly packed things up trying to catch a train... When I understood the dream, I was shocked. I hadn't cultivated my speech, and poured out everything I had. I helped everyone else but myself to cultivate! My attachment to zealotry, showing off, and talking down to other practitioners controlled me, to keep speaking. Fa study helped me remember.
"In genuine cultivation practice one must cultivate one's own heart and inner self. One should search inside oneself rather than outside." (Lecture Nine, from Zhuan Falun)
I came to understand that cultivation practice is for oneself, and one cannot slack off. To help remind myself I put next to my bed Master's Fa,
"Pause for a moment of self-reflection,
and increase your righteous thoughts
Thoroughly analyze your shortcomings,
and progress with renewed diligence"
("Rational and Awake" from Hong Yin II)
In my humble understanding, other practitioners are a mirror. Their shortcomings are a reflection of my own. Because I was able to conduct myself with righteous thoughts and righteous actions, practitioners somehow relied on me. I know now that I should have done more Fa study with them instead of people study, because the latter not only harms them, but also harms me.
I now remind practitioners to strengthen sending righteous thoughts and increase Fa study, and tell them that they should not only study Zhuan Falun, but also Essentials for Further Advancement, as well as Master's other lectures. At the same time I have removed my attachment to vanity and saving face. Many practitioners come to me for help. Some come from out of town and stay in my home for a few days. My daily routine of Fa study, sending righteous thoughts, practicing the exercises and distributing truth-clarifying materials is not affected.
While helping other practitioners I have increased time for Fa study and practice. The Fa principles have since become clearer for me, and I can remove attachments rather quickly. My understandings have improved, as well as my endurance. I have deeply understood that the process of helping practitioners is actually cultivating myself.
It is the boundless, mighty power of Dafa that is saving people. We can become selfless, enlightened beings because our esteemed Master has put forth endless effort and endured countless hardships for us! I will advance diligently without stopping, walk well the path of cultivation practice Master has arranged for me, and return everything Master has bestowed upon me.