Contemplating My Every Thought to Walk My Cultivation Path Well
(Minghui.org) I had always questioned the reason for human existence, but never found a satisfactory answer. That was until I first read Zhuan Falun, the main book of Falun Dafa, at the end of 2012, and was attracted by this sentence:
“One should return to one’s original, true self; this is the real purpose of being human. Therefore, once a person wants to cultivate, his or her Buddha-nature is considered to have come forth.”
This was the answer I had been looking for, and so I started to practice Falun Dafa. Through practicing Falun Dafa I have found many attachments that I need to relinquish.
As a young female practitioner (post-80s generation), I felt that my attire was fairly decent and appropriate.
I recently went out in a pair of shorts because it was hot. On my way to work, a male colleague remarked, “You’re dressed so lightly today, we feel refreshed just by looking at you.”
I didn't think anything about it, and joked around with him and the other men he was with. When I got off the bus, I scrapped my thigh against a piece of metal on the seat, and tore some skin off. It was so painful that I had to wait for the pain to subside before going on to work. I didn't give the incident a second thought.
When I got home, my mother, who is also a Falun Dafa practitioner, commented, “Your pants are too short and too revealing! It’s so indecent!”
“It's so hot,” I argued back. “Everyone wears things like this on the street. Stop making a fuss!”
However, I had questioned myself as to whether I should wear shorts this short. But why not?
An elderly practitioner dropped by our house that evening, and said, “You need to take note of many behaviors of the youth today.”
After thinking about this, I came to realize that my male colleague’s comment the other day was about my shorts making me look enticing and sexy. It encourages the attachment of lust. I did not view the matter from the perspective of a practitioner. That's why I scraped my thigh as I was getting off the bus.
In the past, people put a lot of thought into their attire. People who dress decently and modestly garner respect from the people around them. Practitioners should think carefully about what they are wearing. Every step that practitioners take will be left for future generations. Many things may seem to be right, but they are not when they are measured against the standards of the Fa.
I frequently shopped online, and would compare the prices of several stores to see which offered the best deal. Sometimes, I might spend a few hours or even days searching online before finally purchasing just one article of clothing.
I slowly realized that although comparing and finding bargains may seem normal in the eyes of everyday people, practitioners who understand the principle of “following the course of nature” should know that no matter what you pick, what reaches your hand is the piece that has a predestined relationship with you. So all of the time wasted online is the precious time that Master has made for us to cultivate and help save people.
When I wore new clothes, I wanted people to see them. I would be delighted if people complimented me on the clothes, the price I paid or my figure. If they felt that the clothes were of poor quality or too expensive, I would feel dejected. My expectation of compliments stems from my mentality of showing off.
As I was looking at clothes online, I would also comment on the models' appearance. I did not cultivate my speech, nor did I control my attachment to lust.
Many stores will refund a few dollars as a reward if their customers are willing to leave positive comments. If the quality of the goods is bad, and we leave good comments just to receive a few dollars in reduced prices, then we are being untruthful, and misleading future consumers. Dafa practitioners should act according to the highest standard in the Universe: Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance.
I could have been considered a “game master” on the Internet before I started practicing Falun Dafa. I had been gaming for over ten years in both stand-alone and cyber games. A game provider even made me a moderator to organize events in exchange for gaming equipment and credits. I felt very proud of myself for playing such an important role in the gaming scene.
However, after I started practicing Falun Dafa, I realized that Internet gaming destroys people, and practitioners shouldn't even touch these games. It is not only time consuming, but it also brings disastrous consequences. Games nowadays mostly require people to complete quests to increase levels. Some of these quests involve killing monsters, animals, plants and even humans in the games.
“All matter in the universe, including all substances that permeate the universe, are living beings with thinking minds, and all of them are forms of existence of the universe’s Fa at different levels.” (Zhuan Falun)
Aren't the plants and animals in the games also lives? Objectively, they are.
So killing them is equivalent to killing a being. How many lives do we kill just to complete a quest? How many are killed after an hour of gaming? How many after a day? What serious consequences lie behind gaming?
Many picture-editing software can beautify a picture, or make a person look more attractive. I like to use it on my photos, and the end product was so perfect that I sometimes couldn't even recognize myself.
I would feel very happy when others complimented me on my pictures. This even reinforced my reliance on picture-editing software, to the point that I would not show normal photographs of myself without editing them first.
After I started practicing Falun Dafa, I realized that I purposely sent these edited pictures out in the hope of getting compliments, enhancing my attachment to fame. But the edited pictures do not even look like me. Aren’t I deceiving others about myself if I do that? This also goes against Dafa's principle of Truthfulness.
Singing Everyday People's Songs
I love singing and have even made and sold some albums. A practitioner came to my house one day, and saw one of my albums. She asked if it was really me singing. I assured her that it was, and offered to give her one. But she shook her head and said, “I don't want it. Fa-rectification is at its end, you should stay on your path.” I thought that since I did not sing communist songs, it shouldn't be a problem with my cultivation.
That night, I dreamt that I went back to my childhood home. My mother had just obtained the Fa at the time. There was a portrait of Master in the living room, and a sofa beneath the portrait. I was tidying my desk, and when I turned around, I saw an old lady sitting on the sofa. I had a feeling that the old lady was Master. I asked, “How should I address you?” The old lady smiled and said nothing. I wanted to ask if she had the surname “Li”, but instead I asked, “Where do you come from?” The lady pointed to Master’s portrait and said, “I came from here! Recite a few verses from Hong Yin and sing a few Dafa songs for me, will you?” My mind went completely blank, but after she kept prompting me, I uttered a few lines of a Dafa song.
I was woken up by the alarm clock, and realized that Master was trying to hint to me to memorize the Fa and focus on singing Dafa songs, instead of everyday people's songs.
“If you really want to practice this school of cultivation, you should only read the texts in this school of cultivation.” (Zhuan Falun)
Practitioners should really put all their energy on the Fa, and this includes listening to Dafa songs as a way to relax instead of listening to everyday people's songs.
Dafa songs are pure, but the songs written by everyday people contain their own messages, so when we listen to them and learn them, we are actually asking for those messages. This will then interfere with our school of cultivation.
When I was studying the Fa with my mother one time, she told me that I had made a mistake when reading, so I read it again. But I found out that I hadn't read it incorrectly, and thought that my mother must have been distracted and not been listening properly. After a while, my mother said that I read incorrectly again. I looked closely and found nothing was wrong, so I grumbled: “I didn't make a mistake, you’ve wrongfully said so quite a few times already.”
My mother responded, “When others correct your mistakes, sometimes it is because of you, other times perhaps they didn't hear clearly. If you are holding this attitude, then you’re wrong. I won't correct you anymore.”
Although I felt wronged, I held my tongue and told myself that I should be more tolerant. Yet, I still felt uneasy in my heart. Then, the word “humble” flashed through my mind. I calmed down and looked inward.
When there is a group of us studying the Fa, I tend to read the Fa smoothly with few mistakes, which gained me compliments from other practitioners. When I listen to the slow reading pace and the numerous mistakes made by other practitioners, I correct them with a tone of irritation.
When I listen to other practitioners share their experiences, I either get bored by the repetitive content of some veteran practitioners, or hold a sense of superiority towards those who seem to have read less well than me.
What an arrogant, complacent heart I have!
Master is always so friendly and benevolent towards everyone. I have only learned a fraction of the Fa, yet I thought so highly of myself. I felt really ashamed.
Fishing for Compliments
I have grown into the habit of fishing for compliments from my husband, and repeatedly emphasize my good deeds, only to be satisfied when he expressed his appreciation each time.
When I tried to get him to praise me once, he did not compliment me as expected, but instead shouted: “Stop trying to fish for compliments after doing every single thing! Are you trying to trade your work for something?”
This made me wonder, Why do I want to fish for compliments? It is to demand appreciation and gratitude from others. I am demanding a reaction from the other person. How selfish it is for me to try and satisfy my own desires!
Dafa practitioners should be benevolent and compassionate, and should truly think about others without wanting anything in return.