Why the Arhat Fell
(Minghui.org) While I was memorizing the Sixth Talk in Zhuan Falun, I had a sudden insight into one of the meanings behind this teaching.
Master told us the following story:
“There was this person who put in a ton of effort and finally cultivated into an Arhat. He was about to achieve a True Fruition and become an Arhat—how could he not be happy? He was breaking out of the Three Realms! That happiness was an attachment, though, an attachment of excitement. An Arhat should always be in a state of nonaction, with a mind that’s unshakable. But he dropped, and he cultivated in vain. Since he cultivated in vain he had to cultivate all over again, so again he cultivated himself upward. After he put in a ton of effort, he again moved up by cultivating. But this time he got worried and said to himself, 'I’d better not get happy this time. If I get happy again I’ll drop all over again.' When he got afraid he dropped again. Fear is an attachment.” (The Sixth Talk, Zhuan Falun, 2003 translation)
It dawned on me that the reason the Arhat fell was that he acknowledged the negative thought as his own instead of eliminating it. He hadn't found his true self and didn't have a strong Main Consciousness.
When one reaches the Arhat level, one should be in a state of non-action with a mind that’s unshakable. His happiness and fear did not truly come from him, and it's a pity that he acknowledged the feelings of happiness and fear as his. His thought of not becoming happy was equivalent to acknowledging that the improper thought was his.
“...this law holds in both the old cosmos and the new one: a being's choice is up to him, even if he made some kind of vow in history.” (“Teaching the Fa at the 2002 Fa Conference in Philadelphia, U.S.A.” from Collected Fa Teachings, Vol. II)
Since the Arhat recognized the negative thought as his, he couldn't stay at that level and had to drop. Instead of acknowledging the negative thought, his first reaction should have been to eliminate it. If he had thought, “This thought is not mine. Where did it come from? I have to eliminate it,” he would not have dropped.
We often think various human notions are part of ourselves and say, “I have strong sentimentality. I'm very jealous. My attachment to lust can't be eliminated. I'm afraid, etc...” The first misstep is acknowledging them, and then we have to work to get rid of them. It's like digging a hole, jumping into it and then trying to climb out. As a result, these human notions linger for a long time and are difficult to eliminate.
“Human beings have many attachments, all kinds of notions, and a range of emotions and desires. All these thoughts are in your head, yet none of them are you.” (Teaching the Fa at the Conference in Switzerland)
“In fact, other than a person’s innate purity and innocence, all notions are acquired postnatally and are not a person’s actual self.” (“For Whom do You Exist?” from Essentials for Further Advancement)
Where do these negative thoughts come from? They seem to have been formed as we reincarnated lifetime after lifetime. As a matter of fact, the old forces systematically arranged all of them, including the way we would respond to things we encounter, our roles in history, what notions we would form, and how these notions would be manipulated during the Fa-rectification.
“This Fa-rectification was arranged as early as the time of the previous Earth, and it was given a trial run once before. So in other words, this has been systematically arranged even since a time that remote. Then think about it: could the human society, and everything that we can see, exist by chance? Even each Dafa disciple's every move, every action, every word, and even the questions you ponder, none of it is that simple. In the future you'll see that everything was very carefully arranged. But it's not me who arranged this, it's the old forces who did.” (“Fa-Lecture at the Conference in Florida, U.S.A.” from Collected Fa Teachings, Vol. II)
“Now as practitioners, if in this tribulation you can manage not to acknowledge the old forces' arrangements, then you can make it through.” (Explaining the Fa During the 2003 Lantern Festival at the U.S. West Fa Conference)
As soon as thoughts of fame, fortune, lust, and anger emerge, our first thought should be to refuse to go along with them. They don't belong to us, and we should eliminate them along with the negative entities who've imposed these thoughts upon us.
This is having a strong Main Consciousness and righteous thoughts. It's the only way to break through the arrangements by the old forces, and it is part of rectifying the Fa.
“Sending righteous thoughts targets things that are outside of as well as inside of oneself, with nothing unrighteous allowed to escape.” (“On the Responses to the Piece About Assistant Souls”)
When we suddenly feel afraid of distributing truth-clarification materials, we have to realize that the evil specter of communism has worked for decades to impose “fear” onto people. Its goal is to interfere with our saving people. Could our true selves have such a thought? No, we couldn't, so we should eliminate it!