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Western Practitioner: On What “Sharing” Means and on Being Alone

March 06, 2011 |   By a Western practitioner


Greetings, fellow practitioners,

I would like to share my understanding on a few things I've noticed during cultivation.

Today a practitioner came over to my place and said that she wanted to share with me. I was working on a project, but put it aside to listen to her, a fellow practitioner.

She talked for about an hour without interruption and I listened to her patiently. The tribulation she spoke about did not seem to me to be something major, as it was just a xinxing issue between two fellow practitioners.

I thought about her wanting to “share” with me, since sometimes I hear other practitioners doing the same thing. I think there is a misunderstanding about what “sharing” means. I often hear practitioners say that they would like to share, and then talk about the unfairness of life or what is wrong with others, rather than looking within to examine what caused the situation.

We cultivate at different levels and sometimes practitioners have the need to share, but in my experience, much of what some practitioners think is “sharing” is actually looking outward at others, whereas true cultivation comes from quietly looking within. When we are truly quiet inside, we do the three things with a calm mind and a calm heart, and there is no longer any need for this false “sharing.”

Upon encountering difficult situations, we should just look inside and find where the problem lies within us. My own understanding is that we have to be responsible to fellow practitioners and not waste their time by wanting their attention. We have to be responsible for ourselves as well, and instead of wasting time on talking, focus on doing what we have to do.

Sometimes if a tribulation comes, I say to myself: “What can move a place without anything in it?” If something inside me moves, then I have some kind of attachment. Master said:

“For example, if a bottle filled with dirty things is sealed tightly and thrown into water, it will sink all the way to the bottom. You pour out some of its dirty contents. The more you empty the bottle, the higher it will float in the water. If it is emptied entirely, it will float on the surface completely. In the course of our cultivation practice, you must clean out various bad things in your body so that you can move up. This characteristic of the universe exactly plays this role.”
(Lecture One, Zhuan Falun)

“I am among everyday people and still doing something purposeful—that is, saving people—and my heart is devoted to saving people. But how peaceful were their minds? Their minds were tranquil to the point of being scary. It is possible for one person to reach this tranquility. But with four or five people sitting over there with tranquility like that, it resembles a pond of still water with nothing in it.”
(Lecture Three, Zhuan Falun)

My understanding is that sharing on the basis of the Fa about our understandings is fine, but doing so out of a desire to complain, show off, or an attachment to socializing – is not. I am not talking about external silence, because we have to talk and we have to do our work and clarify the truth, but rather I am referring to the internal state of silence – the quiet mind.

When we let go of ourselves, we will not feel the need to talk about things that do not contribute to our doing the three things that Master has asked us to do.

Please point out anything not in accordance with the Fa.