Finding Human Attachments Related to Marriage
(Clearwisdom.net) A short while ago, a fellow practitioner introduced me to a young male practitioner who lived out of town. On our first date, we chatted and hit it off right away. I learned that he had started practicing Falun Gong before me. He was computer savvy, too. I was very satisfied with my new relationship. Later, we exchanged cell phone numbers. I was happy inside to finally find someone who was a practitioner and, at the same time, I could satisfy my non-practitioner father and others who worried about my ever getting married.
It was easy to handle a relationship between two practitioners. My new relationship triggered my attachment to human sentiment and affection and was not at all what I expected. He was quite reserved and a little indifferent, and I did not like that. In my mind, that was not a romantic relationship. However, I knew as practitioners, we should not behave like ordinary people. Next came a bigger test. One day, his cell phone was turned off. I could not send him text messages. I felt downhearted and could not control my feelings. I knew I should not be like that. I realized I had been trapped in my sentiment and the affection between us. That night after I burned incense in respect to Teacher, I said, “Teacher, I am deeply swamped in human sentiment and affection and can't get out of it. Please help me.” Later in the evening, I talked to him on the phone, and we started to argue about some trivial things. He said something that really hurt my feelings. He said he did not want to continue talking to me. Out of anger I told him we should not continue our relationship.
He did not talk to me anymore. I felt like I had lost my bearings, became depressed, and could not sleep. Around four o'clock in the morning, I had a dream in which he told me over the phone, “If you don't mind your temper, you won’t ever get married.” I was so mad I started quarreling with him in my dream.
I felt smothered because I could not talk to my mother about this, nor did I want her to worry about me. I could not talk to ordinary people either because a conflict among practitioners should not be brought to ordinary people for solutions. I did not want to resort to other practitioners because I felt ashamed. The next day was long and difficult. I wanted to cry, but could not find anywhere to do it. It was the first time I had ever felt how painful human affection could be. At work, my mind was occupied by the breakup. I tried to resolve the problem by myself, but I knew it was because of my strong human attachment. Suddenly, I thought, “Why treat a fellow practitioner as an enemy? Even if we can't be a couple, aren't we still fellow practitioners? Fellow practitioners should have the closest relationships.” After that thought, I could view the whole situation rationally with a calm mind.
During the next few days, I thought about the purpose of fellow practitioners getting married. I remembered reading an article on Clearwisdom that pointed out that fellow practitioners should use caution when entering marriage. If it was for fame, personal gain, and affection, it would be better not to get married. I reviewed my short relationship with my fellow practitioner. We met one time and had a few telephone conversations. Frankly, I could not even remember how he looked, so why was I so upset about our senseless breakup?
When I viewed this from the standpoint of an ordinary person, we were both at fault, 50-50. From a cultivator’s point of view, I was the one at fault. As a practitioner, I should look within, not outside, for answers.
One day, I was reading Minghui Weekly and realized that many of the articles were about practitioners looking inside. I was reminded that practitioners should help one another not tread on or hurt each other. Another article encouraged practitioners to learn how to apologize to resolve issues with ordinary people and with fellow practitioners. The author of this article mentioned that he had apologized many times in cases where he was not at fault. I thought about it and decided I should apologize to my fellow practitioner to clear up any friction between us. Immediately, my attachment to fame and vanity came out. I feared I might get hurt if I initiated the apology. I consoled myself, thinking, “I am not in the same town as he. We may never see each other again, so ignoring this would not be a big deal.” I realized this thought was wrong. Practitioners around the world are a united body. How could I think living in a different town would change that? In the end, I gathered up my courage and wrote a short text message of apology.
I thought I had deleted his number from my phone, but I noticed I had forgotten to delete it from the “sent message” section. I sent him a text message. He replied quickly with a very short text accepting my apology. As I read his reply, I had mixed feelings and a little bit of anger, “So you think you were right? How can you accept my apology so easily with justification?” I was somewhat disappointed because his text meant to put an end to this issue. I did not respond. I realized I was attached to getting a definitive result and attached to the affection between us.
I regret I did not resolve the issue completely and my heart was not pure. In another dream, I met a man who was introduced to me by a fellow practitioner. He was handsome, with a personality exactly the opposite of the practitioner before. He was very outgoing and paid attention to my needs of vanity and ego. The practitioner before him had acted as if I was not important. In the end, I asked, “How is your practice?” He replied, “I do the exercises about once a week.” I then asked, “How often do you study the Fa?” He said, “I have not finished reading Zhuan Falun even once.” I knew I did not want to have a relationship with him. I did not want to hurt his feelings, so I said, “You are a very good person and would make an ordinary girl very happy, but I hope you can read the book at least once.” Then I woke up. The dream was so vivid and it felt so real. Suddenly, I thought, “What if I met such a person in real life? Who would I choose, him or the other practitioner?” I became enlightened. If I wanted to get married and enjoy an ordinary person’s life and affection, I should go find an ordinary person who supported Falun Gong. It brought me back to the old question, “Why do fellow practitioners enter marriage?” If it is to enjoy human life, it does not make a difference whether one marries a practitioner or an ordinary person. If I had chosen to be with the practitioner before, I would have to endure loneliness in the eyes of this human life with ordinary people. The purpose of fellow practitioners marrying should be to form a unified body and a better environment for mutual advancement in cultivation while assisting Teacher in Fa rectification. The purpose should not be affected by apparent conflicts in personalities in an ordinary person’s life.
After being enlightened, I felt great. I started reading the Fa on my cell phone. I came upon a page where it said,
“She came to the class and told me this story, and I was very pleased. Our practitioners’ xinxing have indeed improved.” (Zhuan Falun)
I was moved to tears that fell down my cheeks. I knew Teacher was encouraging me.
After this whole experience, I obtained something. I used to think that fellow practitioner and I were equally to blame. Now I don't think that at all, because I have realized it does not matter who is at fault and who is not, especially if it is based on human affection and sentiment. At the time, I felt hurt. However, it was not that he hurt my feelings; it was due to my human attachment and desire for affection. Why would I blame that practitioner for hurting me? Teacher said,
“If this sentimentality is not relinquished, you will be unable to practice cultivation. If you are free from this sentimentality, nobody can affect you. An everyday person’s mind will be unable to sway you. What takes over in its place is benevolence, which is something more noble. ” (Zhuan Falun)
Letting go of one's sentimentality and attachment to human affection is the key to resolving the problem.
I hope my sharing will benefit fellow practitioners. Please point out anything that falls short of the Fa.