Am I Firm in My Belief?
(Minghui.org) As Falun Dafa practitioners, it is no small matter if we are not firm in our belief in Master and the Fa. Master has pointed this out during numerous Fa teachings. However, due to a lack of Fa study and solid cultivation, I have wavered in my belief without knowing it.
I have always thought I had firm belief in Master and the Fa. Now, I realize that my mindset about this matter has greatly affected my Fa study and cultivation.
One day, an elderly practitioner who had attended Master's lectures in China told me that he found it difficult to move his body and that he felt so heavy he could not even keep his back straight. Even though he sent strong righteous thoughts to clear away the interference, he was still so tired that he could barely keep his eyes open.
I questioned him, “Do you remember what Master said about feelings?
He replied, “What one feels accounts for nothing.”(Zhuan Falun)
I responded, “Then how should you treat your feelings according to Master?”
“It is all fake,” he said. “I do not acknowledge them! But you know, my body feels really heavy. If I am not careful, I will fall to the ground.”
I prodded him. “So what did Master say? Shouldn't we listen to Master?”
“Of course I listen to Master! I know it is all fake and I should not acknowledge it. But I feel so heavy! It really feels like I will fall to the ground!”
Listening to him speak from both sides, I suddenly lost my patience and was instantly filled with rage. I raised my voice and interrupted him. “You say that you listen to Master, but you follow your feelings. Are you really cultivating? Do you really believe in Master and Dafa?”
Master told us, “He is right, and I am wrong”( “Who is Right, Who is Wrong? From Hong Yin III)
Now he was on the defensive. “Of course I believe in Master!” he said. “An hour ago, I went to get the Minghui Weekly in the pouring rain. When I showed up, even the practitioner was surprised!”
Seeing how emotional the old practitioner had become, I realized that I should not have treated him like that. I saw that my behavior was not in line with Master's requirements for us. I apologized to him, but I didn't stop to look inward. I was still upset when I left his home. Later, I reflected on what had happened. After I sent righteous thoughts that night, I looked within and was surprised to find that my belief in Master and Dafa was not firm.
Looking Within for What I See in Others
Master taught us, “It would be good if they could manage to search within themselves for the things that they have been able to find in others.” (“Dialogue with Time” from Essentials for Further Advancement)
Only if we look within can we find and eliminate attachments and truly improve. I had not followed what Master taught us regarding this issue. Because I had not been firm in my belief, I was affected by what appeared before my eyes. I did not look inward unconditionally, and I did not have firm righteous thoughts on the issue of examining within for what I see in others. Once this became clear, I continued to search deeper within my self.
When I arrogantly pointed out what I perceived as “mistakes” of the senior practitioner, I was completely unaware of the fact that I was not firm in my own belief. I am not saying here that we should not point out other practitioners' mistakes, but when we do, we should cultivate ourselves with righteous thoughts. We should remind others kindly, without any human notions, and communicate in a constructive way.
Too Keen on Helping Others Improve?
Recently, I have heard practitioners I work with lament about different issues. Some have admitted that they have been slacking off in cultivation and that their feelings of helplessness arose. Among our group, a particular senior practitioner is considered one of the better ones, yet in my mind, I have judged him and many other practitioners harshly.
My mind thinks, “So-and-so has strong righteous thoughts, and I can discuss things with her.” Or, “He cannot be counted on because he has many human notions! That practitioner often causes trouble, so I should not involve him. “
I then remembered how Master wrote, “Dafa disciples are one body” (“Following Master” in Hong Yin III).
When I looked within and found that I judged fellow practitioners using my limited worldly experience, it helped me see that I do not even have a firm righteous belief in Master and Dafa. I tend to waver because I am not truly one with the Fa.
Over time, my attachments to achievement, fame, reliance on others, not wanting extra work, and looking for easy solutions all resurfaced. I was aware of them and knew I had these attachments before I became a practitioner. I had been making a point to eliminate them, but they had not been uprooted. Now they were resurfacing so that I could recognize them and completely eliminate them.
How to Help
Somewhere along my path of cultivation, I lost touch with how much fellow practitioners can endure. I wanted them to improve quickly! And I wanted to improve quickly, too. But I judged many of them based on how they appeared in this world. Do they look energetic after doing the exercises? What is their mindset? What is their tone of voice? Even just a brief eye contact could affect my thoughts toward them.
Also, I am very attached to what impact the three things has on our human society. Thus, my thoughts and behavior contradict what Master requires of us. When I found my pursuit, I realized that I do not have faith in Master and Dafa.
Master wrote, “Cultivation depends on one’s own efforts, while transformation of gong is done by one’s master.” (Zhuan Falun)
Master also told us the story of a man whose eyes were blindfolded while listening to dripping water. I enlightened that what we can see, hear or feel in the human world are like blindfolds. Master's teaching unlocks our wisdom, which is just like uncovering our eyes.
Some practitioners have gradually lost their confidence in cultivation. It might be because they are too focused on their feelings and unknowingly wear a blindfold.
“As true practitioners, we should look at issues from a very high level instead of from the perspective of everyday people.”
“Because the transformation of gong is very complex, what one feels accounts for nothing. One cannot practice cultivation based on how one feels.” (Zhuan Falun)
No matter what situations we find ourselves in, no matter what we can feel or what we experience—no matter what we have to deal with in this human world—these things are all just landscapes on our journey of cultivation. The path to godhood has been paved by Master. We should not let those illusions blindfold us and cause us to miss the boat or lose our confidence in cultivation.
My level of understanding is limited. This sharing is to invite others to weigh in and improve together with fellow practitioners.