(Minghui.org) I have been practicing Falun Dafa for over a decade. Lately, I have faced some tribulations due to my past negligence. I am writing this article to further deepen my understanding, and hopefully provide a warning for practitioners facing similar situations in the process of cultivation.

Master said,

“Some of our practitioners are struggling with passing the tests of sickness karma. Don’t think that it’s necessarily something major [that causes that]. You might think that you haven’t done anything majorly wrong, and that you are very firm in your faith in the Fa. However, you shouldn’t treat the little issues you have like they are nothing. The evil will seize upon any gaps.” (“Fa Teaching at the 2015 West Coast Fa Conference”)

All thoughts count, even small ones that may seem trivial. With time, they can accumulate and build into bigger issues.

As I was raised in Europe, my parents inculcated Western values in me. I learned pretty good values in my early years regarding respect, work, and family life. At the time, we were one of the families that had no TV. Yet little by little, different notions formed, and around age 13-14 I started watching TV at some other places, which caused my attachment to lust to grow. This was also connected to other feelings, such as inferiority. In terms of relationships between men and women, my parents followed the trends of ordinary society, so those notions grew more and more.

After learning Dafa, I encountered some major tests related to lust. Because society’s standards are so far from those of practitioners, it took me time to adjust. Even later, when I understood the Fa better, I still failed some important tests. With time, I improved my understanding, and the situation evolved.

Yet lust was always present. As it was connected to various other attachments, it grew stronger without my really understanding why or being able to control it.

In addition to the big tests, I also had smaller thoughts of lust, many of which I did not consciously recognize. For example, I would see someone and my brain would have a bad thought. Only if I started to think deeper about how I looked at that person would I realize that I did it with an attachment. Even when I sometimes noticed these improper thoughts, I did not take the time or put the energy into rejecting each one of them, as it felt like too much trouble. I just continued what I was doing, thinking that they didn't really bother me. I felt I could still do what I needed to do.

Master said,

“Dafa disciples: I said long ago that sexual attraction and desire are a fatal roadblock that a cultivator absolutely must overcome.” (“Teaching the Fa at the 2004 Western U.S. Fa Conference”)

This was combined with another problem. Before I started practicing Falun Dafa, when I was around 18, I had to have an operation that may have been related to those bad, lustful thoughts. After I started cultivating, for some reason I accepted the idea that I would have to have some kind of tribulation linked to this, later in my cultivation. I unknowingly followed the old forces’ arrangements, as having such thoughts was like asking for the problem to return.

Master said,

“So think about it: could there be things that aren’t well-ordered? If you could see things for what they are, you would discover that, in your cultivation, whatever setting you are in, whatever social class you’re a part of, whatever status you have, whatever “coincidental” things you have done, or whatever your “luck” may be—all of this which is part of your path—was brought about by your vow, and nothing is by chance.” (“Fa Teaching Given at the 2014 San Francisco Fa Conference”)

I forgot to keep in mind that everything a cultivator encounters is connected to his cultivation path. I did not want to look inward regarding some attachments, to eliminate them proactively, as those thoughts did not directly bring trouble at the moment. Out of laziness, shortsightedness, feelings of guilt, and lack of understanding of the Fa, I let these things happen and slowly build up.

Master said,

“Of course, a three-foot block of ice doesn’t form overnight, so, although the material thing has been removed, the habits that you’ve formed and certain other things will make [argumentative words] spring right out of your mouth. These have become habits, and so if you want to eliminate them it is none too easy. But you have to eliminate them.” (“Fa Teaching Given in Manhattan”)

Because I did not do that, the symptoms related to my previous operation came back. I was ultimately not able to fight them, and they became stronger. I am not yet able to reject them and am still in the process of dealing with this in the proper manner. Moreover, I still have those habits that I need to eliminate.

I allowed the old forces to impose tribulations that made me less efficient in my tasks and made me suffer more than I need to. Because I followed the old forces, they had more and more justifications to interfere with me. I was tricked by them, as I did not take cultivation seriously enough as a whole.

Master said,

“That’s because cultivation is something serious, and requires having no gaps. If for a long time you haven’t dealt with those things through cultivation, small as they may be, if you haven’t taken them seriously for a prolonged period of time, then it is a big issue. Many people have passed away on account of such things.” (“Fa Teaching at the 2015 West Coast Fa Conference”)

Even though this article is about lust, I think the same problems can happen with other types of attachments as well. One has to be careful not to let such notions build up and create additional karma for oneself. We should instead eliminate them each time they appear. All attachments have to be cultivated away, as one cannot go to heaven with attachments.

Category: Improving Oneself