Solid Cultivation Is Instrumental in Improving Oneself
(Minghui.org) When I had begun to practice Falun Dafa, it took me quite some time to understand what cultivation was all about and how to cultivate. Studying the Fa was instrumental in improving my xinxing and understanding what predestined relationships were all about.
Master (Li Hongzhi) said:
“Of course, we believe in predestined relationship. Everyone sits here all because of a predestined relationship.” (Zhuan Falun)
“Actually, let me tell you, the predestined relationship discussed by those of us in the cultivation world can’t be explained in terms of a short time in history. It goes beyond any one lifetime of a person, or even several lifetimes, or even a still longer time. This predestined relationship doesn’t end.” (“Teaching the Fa in New York City” from Lectures in the United States)
Not everything a practitioner encounters in cultivation is a simple matter. However, one should not discount many things experienced before cultivation. No matter what, a practitioner must remember to do well at all times.
I was very interested in spirituality and mystical legends from a very young age. When I was four years old, I asked my grandfather, “Why do human beings live? What for?” He told me that I was too young but that I would understand when I reached his age.
Whenever legends were retold, I believed that they had really happened. When listening to stories about the heavens, I could never hear enough. I always felt that I was born at the wrong time.
After I obtained Dafa, I realized that my past was laying a foundation for me to practice cultivation.
Dealing with Attachments
I looked within and found many stubborn human notions. When I found the root of a certain attachment, I tried to let it go. But sometimes, it appeared again. The worst of my habits I had formed while living in China was telling lies.
When facing problems, no matter if I was right or wrong, I would make all kinds of excuses. Even if another practitioner pointed out my faults, I often used Master’s words to justify my reasoning.
I was in that state for a long time and treated everything with all sorts of human notions. I regarded suffering in life as being unfair, which was just the opposite from a cultivator’s standard.
When I noticed other practitioners' shortcomings, I generated a lot of negative thoughts and only saw their bad points. Compared to their shortcomings, I felt that I cultivated better. Sometimes, I acted worse than before I started on my cultivation path.
I was hooked on electronic games, novels, and animation. I behaved more like an everyday person. Except for eating and sleeping, I spent my time and effort on these things. Thus, my school work suffered and family relationships were very stressful. I clearly knew that this state was dangerous, but I just could not walk away from it.
I had reached the brink of losing everything to my bad habits. Fortunately, I never gave up my cultivation. As I kept studying the Fa, I got hints from Master.
Then, I realized that all my past experiences from many lifetimes could not be compared to practitioners holding up their palm to send righteous thoughts. Nothing could compare to what I saw with my third eye while doing the sitting meditation.
Once I enlightened to this, I found that whatever I read was filled with the indoctrination of the Communist Party. Even the kindness of character being extolled was twisted under the influence of warped notions.
Balancing the Relationship Between Cultivation, Study and Family Members
It is not easy for a practitioner to balance the relationship between cultivation, study, and family members.
I am a cultivator, a student, the eldest among the boys in my family, and a role model for my younger brothers. I found that many of my attachments could manifest in my brothers. Watching them grow up, I realized that it was not easy to be a parent.
My father is a practitioner. I used to think that he was not diligent, but when I looked at the problems from his angle, I found it was difficult to remove the attachment to emotion without a solid Fa-study foundation.
Now my thinking is based on to how to help my father improve through Fa-study instead of from the angle of being emotionally attached to family members. Now, my notion that he was not diligent is gone completely!
Dealing With Conflicts
I found that when I was able to truly view problems from the other person’s point of view, any gaps and negative thoughts quickly disappeared.
Two local practitioners had conflicts all the time. First, they did not accept each other's opinion and then looked for the other person's shortcomings. Other practitioners became involved in their conflicts, while I just watched; they were veteran practitioners, while I had practiced Dafa for only a short while.
As the conflict worsened, I thought, “How could practitioners behave like this? How come other practitioners are afraid of getting involved?” I then lost interest in attending group Fa-study and became aloof for close to half a year.
On the surface, it looked as if it was a conflict between two practitioners in the beginning, but actually, it was targeting all practitioners. We should have looked within. For a practitioner, nothing happens without a reason!
Believing in Master and the Fa
Fa-study enabled us to learn that the old forces had made arrangements that interfered with Master's Fa-rectification. On the surface, they were creating mighty virtue, while in reality, they were doing what they wanted. If we do not strictly keep ourselves in line with the Fa principles, we end up walking on the path arranged by the old forces.
“I also want to tell you that your nature in the past was actually based on egotism and selfishness. From now on, whatever you do, you should consider others first, so as to attain the righteous Enlightenment of selflessness and altruism. ” (“Non-Omission in Buddha-Nature” from Essentials For Further Advancement)
Master taught us to look within. When we change from being unable to look within, to being able to look within, we become more solid in our cultivation. Since every test is arranged for us according to our ability, we can certainly enlighten as long as we put in the effort to cultivate.
Then if we stray from our paths, the things arranged by the old forces will block us from attaining enlightenment. They try to block the righteous thoughts and divine parts of practitioners, leaving only the human side to suffer through all sorts of tribulations – they do not want us to cultivate successfully!
Whether it was the tribulations we had to pass or the difficulties imposed upon us by the old forces, it all targeted our different human notions. Thus, practitioners need to solidly cultivate and diligently study the Fa to strengthen righteous thoughts.
I used to believe that Zhuan Falun was a book that taught people to behave well. Then, I came to realize that it was a ladder enabling us to reach enlightenment. With constant diligence, I gained new knowledge from Zhuan Falun: This book covers everything from the lowest to the highest level.
As a Dafa practitioner in the Fa-rectification period, what is our truth? What is our life purpose?
“You are cultivators. I’m not talking about your past, what you once were, or what you display on the surface. I am talking about your core and the meaning of your life, the responsibility you shoulder, and your historic mission. Only thus are you truly a Dafa disciple.” (“What is a Dafa Disciple” from Fa Teaching Given at the 2011 New York Fa Conference)
When truly facing problems, can we recall what Master has said? When encountering difficulties hard to pass, can we think about Master and ask for strength? That is exactly what we need to do as a cultivator who has a firm belief in Master and the Fa.