How Our Temperaments Become Interference in Cultivation
(Minghui.org) I have been telling people the truth about the persecution of Falun Dafa since 2008. In 2011, I was twice arrested and sent to a forced labor camp, and as a result, I also lost my employment.
Upon reflection, even though I had been practicing Falun Dafa for more than ten years, I was not cultivating myself seriously while doing the three things. So I decided to search deep within myself, beginning from childhood all the way to the present.
To my surprise, I realized my temperament had not changed much in spite of many years of cultivation. Selfishness, narrow-mindedness, cowardice, and impatience have always been my characteristics.
It became easier for me to let go of my attachments once I started to eliminate them proactively. As a result, I had more favorable outcomes when I spoke to people about Falun Dafa and the importance of renouncing their affiliation with the Chinese Communist Party.
There is an old Chinese proverb: It is easier to alter mountains and rivers than to change one's character.
Why? After going through many life cycles, our innate character in relation to Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance has been buried by selfishness. Growing up under the communist ideology also exposed us to twisted concepts of thought.
Our relationships are caused by our karma in past lives. For example, we might feel especially close to certain people but have unresolvable conflicts with others. Thus, in certain situations, the old forces will take advantage of our characteristics and relationships and lead us astray.
For example, some practitioners love to talk. They can talk nonstop for hours, ignoring whether others are pressed for time, offended, or distracted.
Some are careless about their cell phone safety. They don't even listen after other practitioners point it out.
Practitioners with quick tempers, jealousy, and competitiveness are also used by the old forces, and their demon-nature causes damage to what practitioners ought to do.
Some practitioners used to be easy going and capable. They would help other practitioners with anything, and as a result, they became so busy that they did not have time to study the Fa.
A practitioner I know was very competitive. He came from a supportive family and had a good paying job. He was a diligent cultivator and coordinated many projects. The old forces expanded his attachments to ego and fame, however, and he was eventually arrested and sentenced to prison, causing a big loss in his local area.
I’ve noticed diligent practitioners have very mellow temperaments. Other practitioners have improved themselves, but still get upset when disagreements arise.
There are also practitioners who have no awareness of their own characteristics, as they like to hear what they like to hear and get angry when things do not agree with them. Some practitioners are easily manipulated by the old forces because they like to do things based on their passions.
Master said, “But I think they simply need to work on their tempers, as practitioners should be able to stay composed.” (The Ninth Talk, Zhuan Falun)
As a practitioner, we need to stay composed and not let our emotions get the better of us. A bad temper includes any characteristics that need improvement, as many attachments are hidden in layers underneath them.