Sentimentality Towards Other Practitioners Must Be Relinquished
(Minghui.org) Jiping (alias) is a Falun Gong practitioner in our area. She was sentenced to prison for ten years because of her belief and was released in 2014. During our interactions, I started to admire her. However, I knew that a Falun Gong practitioner shouldn't have this attachment and that I needed to get rid of it.
Righteous Thoughts Stop Police Surveillance
After Jiping was released from prison, around a dozen closed-circuit television cameras were installed around her home, and officers from the Domestic Security Division monitored her activities 24 hours a day. Two officers were also assigned to follow her whenever she left home. Whoever visited her would be scrutinized, so many practitioners rarely visited her.
I still went to Jiping's home to study the Fa with her. She met me at the station every time and was always accompanied by a police officer. One day, Jiping introduced the officer to me. He was the head of the Domestic Security Division.
I chatted with him on the way to Jiping’s home and told him about Falun Gong and the persecution. My righteous thoughts seemed to eliminate the old forces behind him, because from then on Jiping was no longer accompanied by anyone when she came to meet me.
Overcoming Conflicts by Looking Within
A local practitioner named Hui (alias) was severely persecuted at a labor camp. She was in critical condition as a result of the torture and was allowed to return home. She was bedridden at home, so local practitioners often went to look after her and studied the Fa with her.
Hui’s husband also started to study the Fa, but his motivation was purely to help his wife, and he didn’t hold himself to the requirements of a practitioner.
Though he studied the Fa, he was grumpy to practitioners who offered him help with Hui. His resentment even kept practitioners away from their home.
Hui’s husband didn't like me. I was resentful about it but still went to study the Fa with Hui. Once, when Hui became very ill I went to get Jiping for help.
Jiping talked to Hui’s husband. The first thing she did was to clear up any misunderstandings that he had about Falun Gong. He liked Jiping and listened to her. We then sent forth righteous thoughts and studied the Fa with Hui.
We studied the Fa intensively each day, and Hui's health started to improve. Through regular Fa study, Hui’s husband's attitude also improved.
As a result of Hui's condition, she needed to use the bathroom quite a few times during the night and needed help getting there. This meant that her husband was only having a couple of hours sleep each night. I tried to offer help, but he became angry with me. I felt wronged and left.
Hui’s husband phoned me to apologize when I got home. That evening, I confessed to Jiping that I held a lot of resentment towards Hui’s husband and need to get rid of it.
The next time I visited Hui I still had a few clashes with her husband, but this time we both looked within, rather than blame each other.
My Attachment to Sentimentality
Jiping had been fired from her job 18 years ago because she practices Falun Gong. Many practitioners offered her financial assistance, but she refused to accept it. So they bought her clothes and daily necessities instead. Jiping was very strict with herself and often talked about how Shakyamuni led his disciples in begging for food. But I couldn’t really understand what she was getting at.
Before the Chinese New Year, practitioners took goods and clothes to Jiping, but she gave them away to others who were in greater need and donated money, equivalent to the value of the clothes, to fund the local truth-clarification materials production site.
Jiping often told me that I looked up to her. She was right. I knew that it was a mentality that I needed to relinquish.
A practitioner and I took her some gifts one day. She was very serious and wouldn’t talk to us. I said, “We came to see you. Why are you being so rude?”
She told us that if we continued to give her presents then we shouldn't go there anymore. She added, “We must all set a high standard for ourselves, otherwise none of us will reach enlightenment.”
I was angry! I tried to suppress my feelings, but I couldn't. Why was she so rude to me? I tried my best to take care of her and held her in high regard.
Jiping said, “Shakyamuni didn’t let his disciples have any contact with money or material things. If I accept so many gifts, it is not in line with the Fa.”
“But that is the requirement set in Buddhism!” I replied.
“As long as it is mentioned in Zhuan Falun, we should give it serious thought!” Jiping responded.
Was I wrong? I couldn’t understand this concept and had to read what Master said:
“Cultivation is something you do right in the thick of tribulations. They’ll test whether you can sever your emotions and desires, and they’ll see if you can take them lightly. If you’re attached to those things you won’t be able to finish your cultivation. Everything has its cause. Why can human beings be human? It’s exactly because humans have emotion. People just live for emotion. The affection among family members, the love between a man and woman, love for parents, feelings, friendships, doing things for friendship’s sake—no matter where you go you can’t get out of emotion. You want to do something, you don’t want to do something, you’re happy, you’re unhappy, you love something, you hate something—everything in society comes completely from emotion. If you don’t sever emotion, you won’t be able to cultivate. But if you do break out of emotion, nobody can affect you, and ordinary attachments won’t be able to sway you. What replaces it is compassion, which is more noble.” (The Fourth Talk in Zhuan Falun)
Master also said,
“There is a small number of students who are privately becoming like buddies and pals--"we do things together, we're a little group"--and they often talk about a bunch of useless things, wasting large amounts of time. Right now every minute and every second is crucial. If you miss out during this period of time, you miss out on everything.” (“Teaching the Fa at the 2003 Atlanta Fa Conference”)
After carefully reading both paragraphs of the Fa, I realized that I shouldn’t see things from an ordinary person’s perspective, especially in having strong emotions and sentimentality towards Jiping.
I must rectify myself in line with the Fa, and use my time more effectively to do what a practitioner should do. I will walk the correct cultivation path and go back home with Master.