Breaking Through Human Notions
(Minghui.org) As Dafa practitioners, we do not belong within the Three Realms, and this human world should not have any effect on us. Human notions may however sometimes create additional difficulties for cultivators. I would like to share some of my personal experiences in breaking though human notions.
Drinking Water to Relieve a Sore Throat
I woke up one morning to a swollen and painful throat. I instantly attributed these symptoms to certain foods I had eaten the day before, and a few glasses of water effectively relieved my sore throat. My symptoms recurred the following morning, and two glasses of water again helped to relieve the discomfort and pain. On the third day however, the symptoms refused to go away no matter how much water I consumed. That evening, while contemplating why the water was not working, the word “human notion” suddenly appeared in my mind. I pondered over these two words before suddenly realizing that I had been treating the issue like an ordinary person. I was believing that my condition was an illness and viewing water as a medication to relieve the symptoms. Practitioners should strive to think otherwise, and I resolved to eliminate this human notion.
This realization prompted me to search inward for the cause of my sore throat. A few days prior, I had a conflict with my wife. Though I refrained from arguing with her, I was upset, and the resentful, accusatory, and hostile thoughts I harbored against her were unbecoming of a cultivator. My sore throat disappeared as soon as I recognized and eliminated this shortcoming.
I had suffered from severe backaches for a long time. The pain would flare up in the midst of my daily activities, forcing me to lie down for a while to relieve the aching. As cultivators should be free of illnesses, I started searching within myself for the root cause. Although I uncovered a number of attachments, none resolved the pain.
One morning, while eating white melon seeds, I suddenly recalled why I had started eating them regularly. Several years ago, I had hit upon the notion that my backaches were due to a calcium deficiency. As white melon seeds were supposed to be rich in calcium, I had developed the habit of eating them regularly. Over time I had forgotten the reason for this habit, but the idea was certainly based on an everyday person’s notion.
This revelation led me to recall the circumstances under which my back had been injured. Seven or eight years ago, while attempting to cross a blocked-off part of a street, I was forced to climb through a gap in the wall and jump down to reach the adjourning street below. I landed abruptly and begged Master for help. Master helped banish my pain and I was able to stand and continue my journey. If I had immediately rejected the human notion of sustaining an injury, I would not have needed to seek Master’s help. My backache disappeared after this attachment was eliminated.
Recovering from Knee Pain
I used to suffer from severe knee pain, which forced me to walk slowly. Despite searching within, I was unable to discern the reason I had this condition.
One morning while practicing the exercises, my leg suddenly went limp and I fell to the ground. I knew that Master was adjusting my body and immediately thanked Master before standing up and continuing the exercises. However my knee continued to hurt even after I completed the exercises. I was puzzled. Master had adjusted my body, why did the pain remain?
A phrase from Master's teachings suddenly surfaced in my mind,
“When a tribulation arrives, if you, a disciple, can truly maintain an unshakable calm or be determined to meet different requirements at different levels, this should be sufficient for you to pass the test. If it continues endlessly and if there do not exist other problems in your xinxing or conduct, it must be that the evil demons are capitalizing on the weak spots caused by your lack of control.” (“Expounding on the Fa” from Essentials for Further Advancement)
The word “conduct” continued reverberating in my head. I then realized that this referred to the way I had treated this tribulation. I deliberately adopted a slower walking pace to accommodate my knee pain. By doing so, I was acknowledging the existence of the condition, even though Master had already eliminated the cause. I started walking briskly and found that my knee pain vanished.
Suspicion and Fear
Because of our special environment and circumstances, attachments to various fears easily surface. In such situations, acknowledging the fears is equivalent to treating oneself as an ordinary person.
These fears occasionally strike me when I run into patrolling police officers, or when a random passerby walks behind me. My sense of fear and danger is heightened, even though there is nothing to be suspicious or fearful about.
My irrational fears came to a head one day when I started experiencing debilitating fear while walking around my own house. This continued for a few days until I was seriously contemplating selling my own home. At this point, I stumbled across a paragraph in Zhuan Falun (Lecture Six, Cultivation Insanity):
“With this fear, it may indeed bring this person some trouble. Once you are scared, it is an attachment of fear. Isn’t that an attachment? Once your attachment surfaces, shouldn’t it be removed? The more you fear it, the more it will appear like a sickness. This attachment of yours must be removed. You will be made to learn from this lesson so that you can remove your fear and improve.”
Upon analyzing my previous experiences I realized there had been nothing to fear. During my first encounter, I had let my human notions take over and this increased my sense of paranoia, which fanned the flames of suspicion and fear. Master had taken mercy on me and pointed out this paragraph so I could realize and effectively eliminate this attachment.