Practitioners Must Be Truthful in All Circumstances
(Minghui.org) A phrase in Buddhism, “A monk never lies,” is similar to the one in secular society, “A gentleman doesn't lie.”
The two phrases advise people not to lie, as telling lies is usually done to deceive or cheat others.
Truthfulness, honesty, and integrity are highly valued traits. In traditional Chinese culture it is said that people who uphold integrity would rather lose their life than not keep a promise. A related Chinese phrase is, “A promise is worth more than a thousand ounces of gold.”
However, these traditional values have been virtually destroyed by over half a century of indoctrination by the Chinese Communist Party's (CCP) atheist education. Today's Chinese society has been saturated with traits of cheating and deceiving. It has become normal to say that one cannot achieve anything without telling lies.
People in China have become accustomed to the lies and cheating due to years of the CCP's education, which has even resulted in some practitioners lying without giving it a second thought.
“In cultivating Zhen-Shan-Ren, the Tao School emphasizes the cultivation of Zhen. Therefore, the Tao School believes in the cultivation of Zhen to nurture one’s nature; one should tell the truth, do things truthfully, become a truthful person, return to the original, true self, and in the end, become a true person through cultivation. However, it also includes Ren and Shan, but with an emphasis on the cultivation of Zhen. The Buddha School emphasizes cultivating Shan of Zhen-Shan-Ren. Because the cultivation of Shan can generate great, benevolent compassion, when compassion develops one will find all beings suffering and thus develop an aspiration to offer salvation to all beings. It also has Zhen and Ren, but with an emphasis on the cultivation of Shan. Our Falun Dafa is based upon the highest standard of the universe, Zhen, Shan, and Ren, all of which we cultivate simultaneously. The system that we cultivate is enormous.” (Zhuan Falun)
Falun Dafa practitioners follow the principles of “Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance,” and therefore must not lie.
A practitioner must not lie, give false statements, or tell half-truths. There is no compassion if one is not truthful. If one chooses to tell a lie for a particular reason, he is not practicing forbearance.
For years, I regarded myself as doing well when it came to being truthful and compassionate, but I lacked the patience to forbear because I couldn't take criticism.
I believed that I was an honest person who did not lie, but when I examined my conduct I found that I had lied. So I hadn't done well when it came to both truthfulness and compassion.
Not Following Through on a Promise
When I bought vegetables at a market I often told the vendor that their produce looked to be of excellent quality. But I only said these words to please the seller so that they would accept my paper currency with truth-clarification words printed on them.
I often promised to come back to buy from them, but I rarely did.
Realizing that I should not lie, I began to send forth righteous thoughts when using this type of paper currency at the market. However, the lie naturally came out of my mouth at times. So when it did happen, I tried to remember that particular seller and buy from him or her again.
When I saw a laborer who looked very poor I sometimes promised to give them some clothing or shoes after talking to them about Falun Dafa and the persecution. However, I sometimes forgot. And when I did remember they had already moved on to another place.
I felt guilty for making a promise I did not keep.
I once promised to bring a cap to an elderly man, as he was sweating profusely under the summer heat. But he was no longer there when I returned a day later.
Even though I went back with the cap as promised, I still felt bad because he might think that a Falun Dafa practitioner had lied to him.
People are Like Mirrors
Some people have asked me my name, address, and occupation when I spoke to them about Dafa. Given that Falun Dafa practitioners are persecuted in China I cannot give my name and address to people for security reasons, so I gave a fictitious name, occupation, and address.
I wondered why people often asked me this, and after looking inward I realized that I was the one who started this by asking others for their personal information. After realizing this, I stopped asking people for these details, and in turn they stopped asking me.
I often arrived late for meetings with other practitioners. I had a bunch of excuses, but most of the time the real reason was that I left home late.
When I did not make an appointment, I told the other person that I was too busy and forgot.
This was not the proper behavior for a practitioner, and so I began leaving home earlier to ensure I arrived on time. I'm now often the first one there and have to wait for other practitioners.
There is nothing trivial in cultivation. An exaggeration or understatement also hides the truth. Lying, false promises, exaggeration, and understatements are all contrary to the principles of “Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance.”
A liar cannot reach righteous fruition or consummation. A cultivator cannot lie and must eliminate the habit of lying.