Only by Looking Within and Cultivating Oneself, Can One Do Better in Saving Sentient Beings
(Clearwisdom.net) I have been practicing Falun Dafa for 14 years. Both joy and hardship have accompanied me on my journey of cultivation. I could not have made through today without Master's compassionate protection. While reporting my cultivation experience to my great, compassionate Master, I hope to find my gaps, cultivate myself well and save more sentient beings.
1. Looking Within, Cultivating Myself Well and Harmonizing My Family
For a long period of time, I did not look within. As a result, my husband often blamed me for things and was never happy about what I did. When this happened, I focused on his faults instead of searching inside and often argued with him and became more and more angry as I continued to argue. Later I chose to simply avoid him when he blamed me. The conflict was avoided, but my attachment was not gone. The problem would come back again.
My mother-in-law is in her 90s and always talks too much. She cannot hear well, so she talks loudly. Because of that, I couldn't concentrate on studying the Fa and was unhappy. While I was meditating, she came in with her crutch making a thump, thumping sound and then stood in front of me. Her crutch then fell from her hand and hit the floor with a sudden bang that scared me. Furthermore, my mother-in-law has a lot of children and grandchildren who keep coming to our home for a visit. During their visits, my husband found more faults with me and sometimes embarrassed me in front of others. I felt really tired and angry. I could not study Fa calmly and could not do the three things well and was really anxious. These conflicts happened often during the period when I did not spend much time studying the Fa, let alone looking within.
I then started to search inside. Why did so many troubles happen? Why was my heart moved so easily? Afterwards I spent a lot of time studying the Fa. Master said,
“Accordingly, in your future cultivation practice you will run into all kinds of tribulations. How can you practice cultivation without these hardships? If everyone is good to one another without conflicts of interests or interference from the human mind, how can your xinxing make progress by your only sitting there? That is impossible. One must truly temper and upgrade oneself through actual practice.” (Zhuan Falun, 2000 version)
I finally found my selfishness. I was afraid that my mother-in-law would interfere with my Fa study and doing the exercises and hinder my doing in doing the three things. Looking superficially, I was afraid that my doing the three things would be interfered with, but in fact, my mother in-law fears being alone and always wants to talk with somebody. I was acting impatient and did not have enough compassion. I did not think about things from my mother-in-law's point of view.
I was determined to let go of this selfishness and decided to set apart a bit of time every day to accompany my mother-in-law and manifest a Dafa practitioner's tolerance and compassion. For every day that she lives with us, I would treat her well and take good care of her. At the same time, I sent forth the thought that I would not allow the old forces to take advantage of my mother-in-law to interfere with my doing the three things well.
After I let go of my attachment, her talking seemed to get quieter and I became more calm. At the same time, I started to recite and transcribe the Fa. My heart became more peaceful and benevolent, I no longer paid attention to her shortcomings and I only thought about my duties and responsibilities toward her. Now my mother-in-law tells everybody how good her daughter-in-law is. I know that Master helped me after I let go of my attachment.
I had a strong attachment of competing with my husband and could not look within when conflicts happened. I always argued and wanted to prove that he was wrong and I was correct. I always wanted to hear good words about myself. After realizing this, I started to strictly discipline myself. I no longer argued with my husband and my heart was no longer bothered as much no matter what he said. One day when my daughter and I were cleaning the kitchen, he again started to blame me for this or that. I did not say anything and continued with my work. Hearing no response from me, he said, “Why are you not speaking?” He meant that I did not argue with him. I was calm and smiled to him, “I have good character.” He became very amused and kept laughing and repeating “good character” even after he walked out of the kitchen. He had stopped blaming me from then on. Sometimes he voluntarily cooked for the family and overall he became more considerate.
I let go of my attachment of competing through studying the Fa and my family became more harmonious.
2. Letting Go of Sentimentality and Being Compassionate to Fellow Practitioners
My daughter started to cultivate with me in 1996. She saw the three characters of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance in the corner of her eye even at the beginning of her cultivation. In the evening, she saw the room filled with red light and it was bright even with no light turned on. She saw that Master's fashen (Law bodies) were all over the room, wearing yellow robes with blue and curly hair, and it was magnificent. Sometimes she saw little infants jumping around on her palm and they were very naughty. When we studied the Fa together, she saw chains of srivatsa 卍 symbols coming out from my mouth while I was reading the Fa. Although I could not see anything, what she saw encouraged me to strive forward vigorously on my journey of cultivation. We participated in group Fa study and group exercises every day with no interruption.
However she stopped studying the Fa afterwards and I could not persuade her to resume no matter what I said. Several years went by. She then entered Grade 12 and was under great pressure to do her school work. I encouraged her to study Dafa since Dafa opens up ones wisdom. She responded that she had too much school work and did not have time to study the Fa. The situation remained the same until one day, both of her eyes became red and swollen and she could no longer do her school work. Her father took her to a hospital and the examination result showed that her retina fell off. She was given medication and came back home to rest.
I shared my understanding with her and pointed out that she kept saying that she did not have time to study the Fa, but now with her eyes swollen so badly, she should have time to study the Fa now. I asked her to think things over: She had never become sick since she started to cultivate. Why did her eyes become like this now? Isn't it suggesting that she should study the Fa now? If she had been studying Fa well, could such a thing happen to her?
This time, my daughter agreed to study the Fa. I then played the video's of Master's lectures for her. Her grandmother and her great aunt were all at my home. Her father told her not to listen to the Fa and asked her to take the medication. We ignored the interference and continued to listen to the Fa. A miracle happened that night. Her eyes recovered without taking any medication and she was able to see things again. My whole family witnessed Dafa's supernatural power and her father then no longer tried to stop her from studying the Fa.
Later my daughter graduated from school and I then thought that she now had time to study the Fa but she was not active in studying and would not send forth righteous thoughts. I could not persuade her to change no matter how I shared my understanding with her. I was very anxious, blamed her a bit and she became angry and yelled at me. I felt so sad. A long period of time passed and my daughter kept cultivating on and off.
I calmed down and conscientiously searched inside and found so many of my attachments. I ignored her strengths and only focused on the shortcomings. When she was not doing things well, I did not point it out with compassion. Instead, I made sarcastic remarks. My words carried a lot of things from the CCP culture and did not have the compassion and tolerance that a cultivator should have. I was looking forward to her graduation so that she would have time to study the Fa and do the exercises. This increased my attachment of zealotry, which then made her not want to study Fa. When I saw my daughter not studying the Fa and not doing exercises, I became anxious, which was also an attachment. When my daughter lost her temper with me, I felt aggrieved and hurt. Isn't that sentimentality? Master said:
“Since one’s real life is one’s Primordial Spirit, the one who gives birth to your Primordial Spirit is your real mother. In the course of samsara, you have had mothers who were human and non-human, and there are too many of them to be numbered. It is also countless how many sons and daughters you have had throughout your different lifetimes. Who is your mother? Who is your son or daughter? No one knows it after one passes away. You must still pay for what you owe others.”(Zhuan Falun, 2000 version)
I still treated her as my daughter instead of as a fellow practitioner and I did not treat her with the mindset of a cultivator. Although I did all of those things for my daughter's cultivation, I also needed to cultivate myself, but I had kept searching outside.
Seeing my shortcomings, I was determined to let go of those bad things. I sincerely apologized to my daughter, “Although we are mother and daughter in this life, your true mother is in heaven. We are so fortunate that we obtained the Fa together in this life with our predestined relationship. Today I realized the seriousness of cultivation. I will treat you as my fellow practitioner and be responsible to your cultivation so that I will not feel guilty if I face your true parents in the future. Please pardon me if I did things wrong and hurt you!”
I told Master in my heart, “Master, I did not cultivate well and I did not guide her well. Now I will stop thinking and completely let go of everything. I will leave everything to Master to arrange. In fact, Master arranged the cultivation path for everyone and also takes care of everyone. I should only treat my fellow practitioner with compassion instead of forcing her to accept my will and I will cultivate through this to achieve compassion. I believe she will cultivate well by studying the Fa.”
I let go of my sentimentality and my heart was full of compassion. My whole body felt so light and I had joy in my heart. I knew that Master helped me. I will definitely cultivate well and will not let Master down.
Also, we should treat our fellow practitioners with compassion. A local elderly practitioner had been enduring “sickness karma” which was a false appearance, for a long period of time and she could not step out. Many practitioners shared their experiences and understandings with her and sent forth righteous thoughts for her, but it was not very effective. Sometimes I became anxious when I saw that she couldn't let go of her attachment. Over time, I also became attached to her attachment. Another practitioner's cultivation status had not been good because she had not been able to give up her attachments and other practitioners could not communicate with her. Some practitioners told me her shortcomings and what attachments she was holding on to.
Why did I encounter such thing? Master said, 'when two people have a conflict and a third person sees it, even that third person should think about whether there are any problems on his part—“Why did I happen to see it?”'(“Teaching the Fa at the Eastern U.S. Fa Conference”) Fellow practitioners are a mirror. There must be some problem on my part because I encountered it so I started to search inside and found that I had many attachments. I could not discipline myself strictly and slacked off sometimes. I always focused on others' shortcomings when I tried to help them. I lacked compassion, but always thought that I was helping.
Soon I started to change how I thought and no longer focused on the concrete things no matter what kind of attachment a practitioner may have. I only view the positive side of a practitioner and be kind to them. I gave the other practitioner a righteous thought to encourage them and believed that they would definitely realize their attachments and upgrade their level. After that, when I shared my understanding with practitioners again, they were also able to accept what I said and were willing to share their understanding with me. In fact, the process of helping other practitioners is the process to improving oneself. During the process, I found many of my attachments and improved through cultivating myself. My character ascended and my heart expanded.
One day I was very eager to study the Fa so I sent forth righteous thoughts to eliminate all interference that stopped me from watching Master's lecture video. After I watched three lectures in a row, my heart became very calm. Every sentence that Master said went straight into my mind and I enlightened to many principles. I had not been in the correct state during Fa study for a long time. My husband had been playing computer games behind me and had not made any noise for several hours. Everything seemed still. I was immersed in the happiness of Fa study. Because of studying the Fa with a calm mind, I felt that every cell of mine became energetic. After studying the Fa with my daughter that evening, she asked me to take a nap because for a long time, I had felt sleepy in the evenings and had not being able to keep my hand straight when I sent forth righteous thoughts. However this time I did not feel sleepy at all. I sent forth righteous thoughts at 12:00 a.m. and continued for over one hour without feeling sleepy. It really manifested the power of the Fa. It also made me understand that as long as I truly study the Fa with a calm mind and search inside when facing problems, I can do it well and the meaning of the Fa will manifest itself.
3. Clarifying the Truth at My Workplace
As my heart became cleaner after I constantly searched within and upgraded myself, I clarified the truth with more effectiveness. At my workplace, I disciplined myself with Dafa's criteria and worked diligently with no complaint. My words and deeds affected people around me and I was recognized and trusted by my boss and colleagues. Through my efforts, the majority of my colleagues understood the truth and withdrew from the CCP. A new worker was an introverted girl. She was depressed because of a broken heart. I often cared for her and comforted her. I also tried to free her from suffering by explaining to her the principles of Dafa and letting her understand why a human becomes a human and why we suffer. She has already started to read Zhuan Falun. She came out of the depression and gradually became cheerful.
I also helped a custodian withdraw from the CCP. One day, she found me in a hurry and asked me to tell her what really happened to Falun Gong. I played the video, “Traveling Heaven and Earth Through Wind and Rain” and watched it with her. She finally understood the truth. This also made me understand that numerous beings are waiting to hear the truth and that when we persuade people to withdraw from the CCP, we should explain these fundamental facts about Falun Gong so that numerous beings can truly be saved.
Sometimes I clarify the truth and persuade people to withdraw from the CCP when I go out for business, take a taxi or go shopping. When I study Fa well, search within and cultivate myself, my state of mind is very good and people will voluntarily ask me to clarify the truth to them. Once I went to a tax inspection bureau and persuaded an official to quit the CCP with only a few words. Another time, I clarified the truth to a Chief Director from a radio station who gladly quit the CCP. Her husband also quit and said happily, “Thank you! Thank you!”
I often come into contact with some entrepreneurs in my work. I clarified the truth to them and they also quit the CCP. Sometimes I burn DVDs about Falun Gong and print informative brochures in my spare time and provide them to other practitioners to distribute. I'm doing what I ought to do within my power. Now I'm preparing to clarify the truth using a cell phone and break more obstacles to save more people. During the period that I did not focus on searching within the effect of my truth clarification was not so good. Once I took a taxi and clarified the truth to the driver and talked for a long time but he still wouldn't quit from the CCP. Therefore searching within is fundamental in saving numerous beings.
Of course, only through Master's compassionate protection and Dafa's guidance, was I able to do these things. I'm still falling far behind the requirements from Dafa in saving people. I still seek comfort and still have the attachment of selfishness. I wasted a lot of precious time due to being unable to let go of my attachments. I feel guilty for taking advantage of Master's compassionate and painstaking salvation. I will study the Fa more, study the Fa well, constantly cultivate myself better, clarify the truth to more people, persuade more people to quit the CCP, and fulfill my oath made in a prehistoric time.