(Minghui.org) I started practicing Falun Gong in 1997. Since the Chinese Communist Party's (CCP) persecution of Falun Gong began in 1999, I've witnessed practitioners who were not diligent leave the path of cultivation. I became progressively more sluggish until I saw the old force arrangements clearly. I was also really moved by a comment Master made at the New York Fa Conference.
“With cultivation, don’t you know—the old forces precisely want to sift out those who aren’t diligent or up to standard.” (“Fa Teaching at the 2013 Greater New York Fa Conference (Questions and Answers)”)
Practitioners remain diligent under harsh conditions
Many practitioners were out diligently validating the Fa under the harshest of conditions of the persecution. From 1999 to 2004 under such cruel conditions, practitioners resolutely clarified the facts about Falun Gong and the persecution. But after the environment became more relaxed, many practitioners, including myself, became lax in our cultivation. We lost the determination and diligence that we had at the beginning. Some who had gone astray awakened and returned to the righteous path, but they were lured by many attachments and soon slacked off. Many even thought, “Maybe it's OK to relax. We've validated the Fa and saved many people.” This thinking was incorrect and caused them not to be diligent.
Practitioners became sluggish under relaxed conditions
At the start of the persecution practitioners were attached to time and believed that Fa-rectification would end soon. They were in a hurry to save sentient beings. However, the Fa Rectification seems to have gone on for a long time, and some practitioners have become relaxed. It is extremely easy for the old force to interfere with practitioners who are not diligent. The old forces can seduce practitioners into having more attachments and encouraging their moral standards to decline. Serious sickness karma can develop and major mistakes can be made in Dafa work and validating the Fa. A practitioner who has many attachments is unable to use righteous thoughts to handle sickness karma effectively, deny the old force arrangements and follow the path arranged by Master. The old forces utilize fear and attachments to persecute practitioners to death and has done so repeatedly.
Old forces sift out practitioners who aren't diligent
My current understanding is that the old forces want only “one household in ten” (Fa Teaching at the 2013 Greater New York Fa Conference) to remain, and they also want to eliminate practitioners who they don't think are diligent or up to standard. Their main goal is to interfere with practitioners by making them more and more sluggish, and then to sift them out step by step. Many practitioners are prepared to deal with the cruel persecution brought about by the CCP, but are caught completely off guard by this method of persecution - weeding out practitioners who aren't up to standard.
Practitioners need to wake up!
We really need to enlighten to this method of persecution by the old forces, as it is not what Master wants. Whether it is the ruthless persecution or making practitioners not diligent over time, Master doesn't want or recognize any of this. These are principles of the old universe. Master wants us to unconditionally assimilate to the Fa, save sentient beings, complete our missions and reach Consummation.
Doing the three things well
To prevent the old forces from exploiting our gaps, we first need to pay attention to doing the three things well. We should study the Fa, send forth righteous thoughts and clarify the facts. The three things are interlinked and all are indispensable. There will be interference when we don't do any of these well. If we allow the old forces to interfere with us when we study the Fa, the words won't penetrate deeply into our minds and we won't reap the benefits of practicing. There will be interference even if we are just a little careless. Sometimes I've thought: Fa-rectification will end soon and there's not much interference, so I don't need to send righteous thoughts. There was also a period of time that I couldn't remember to send righteous thoughts. As a result, I had more and more interference. It wasn't until I awakened that I realized my thinking was wrong.
Remembering that we are practitioners
Society is disorderly, morality has declined and the amount of karma in the environment is huge. It is the old forces that arranged this, and this presents a severe test for practitioners. Our cultivation plays a major role to help clean up such an environment. We must keep in mind that we are practitioners while immersed in today's society, otherwise it is extremely easy to be moved, develop attachments and become sluggish.
The old forces try to eliminate practitioners that they don't approve of. They try to cause practitioners not to be diligent, and use this method to sift out practitioners that they don't want. All practitioners should take this issue seriously. Every practitioner has had a difficult path to follow. We need to clearly recognize the path that Master arranged, as well as the arrangements of the old force. We need to eliminate the old forces arrangements at the root. We need to cultivate well, save sentient beings, complete cultivation and follow Master home.