Making the Case for Group Fa Study
(Minghui.org) In Zhuan Falun, Master explained the characteristics of the universe, the key to improving one's level, the realm of a great enlightened being, and much more. The entire essence of cultivation is explained in the teachings. Master said: “An Arhat should be free of attachments, with a heart that cannot be affected.” (Lecture Six, Zhuan Falun).
We then can measure our xinxing against this standard, find our shortcomings, and improve on our cultivation path. Master said:
“The Fa can break all attachments, the Fa can destroy all evil, the Fa can shatter all lies, and the Fa can strengthen righteous thoughts.” (“Drive Out Interference,” Essentials for Further Advancement II)
Every single word and even the punctuation in the Fa has layers of Buddhas. If we read the Fa with great sincerity and respect, the Buddhas in the Fa will help us cultivate.
The Fa is boundless. Is it true that as long as we read it, we will be able to do the three things we are expected to do well and reach consummation? Not necessarily. Zhuan Falun is profound and boundless, but our inborn quality and enlightenment are limited. If we just read the Fa by ourselves, we may not able to break through our own limitations and not be able to see the immense universe.
Some practitioners were able to recite the Fa fluently, but they later betrayed Dafa and even tried to “transform” others. Some of them quit cultivating, and some of them passed away. Why? It is because they always read the Fa by themselves and never assimilated into the group. When they went awry, they claimed that they reached consummation. This is the demonic interference from one's own mind.
They cultivated alone, so they could not compare themselves with other cultivators and share understandings. Some of them did the exercises incorrectly for more than 10 years without realizing it. Some of them never read the Minghui website articles to follow the trend of the Fa-rectification. All of these are serious obstacles in one's cultivation, which keeps a practitioner from being able to tell good from evil. Thus, some of them believed the Party's evil propaganda.
Importance of the Minghui Website
Master said: “I hope that sharing what you’ve learned will truly enable everyone to improve.” (“To the Florida Fa Conference,” Essentials for Further Advancement II)
The articles published on the Minghui website are selected accounts of true cultivation. Reading them is like reading dramas about cultivation. They are different from mainstream dramas, as these dramas depict real life. At the surface level, we are reading sharing articles and following the dramas acted out by fellow practitioners. Actually, when we read them, we are influenced by their righteousness and thus are able to correct ourselves.
For example, when I read The Lament of “Untruthfulness” and A Dialogue with “Cunning,” I saw my own shortcomings and corrected my thoughts. Reading articles on Minghui helps us mature in cultivation so that we can make progress with our fellow practitioners.
My own understanding is that all practitioners form a whole body, which cannot be seen in this dimension, but in the other dimension, it takes form. Minghui is the glue that holds the whole body together. It connects every practitioner that reads the articles. Following Minghui, we can be part of the entire body.
Master has acknowledged the importance of Minghui multiple times. So we really need to pay serious attention to it. Our attitude towards Minghui accurately reflects our xinxing and enlightenment.
Importance of Sharing Understandings
Practitioners have different inborn qualities, levels of enlightenment, tasks, and responsibilities. In everyday society, they also have different family backgrounds and personalities and are of different ages. In fact, our fellow practitioners should be looked at as the “Buddhas around us.” If we are humble enough, we can measure ourselves against these Buddha natures manifested in our fellow practitioners.
We clearly see their behavior and can listen to what they say. Some of them have overcome tests of life and death and are solid in their belief in Dafa. Others are strict with themselves but treat those around them compassionately, while still others are forgiving and never complain. There are those that can endure great suffering and have never been critical about the tasks assigned to them. They are the golden Buddhas around us, and we should always measure ourselves against them.
One practitioner said: “One can only be fearless if one is selfless. The less selfish you are, the less fear you have.”
Those practitioners always help fellow practitioners to do all kinds of truth-clarifying tasks. I am always amazed by the righteousness demonstrated by their behavior and what they say, which encourages me to stride forward diligently.
Actually, their criticism can also be seen as a wake-up call for us. Their uncompromising attitudes can be treated as opportunities for us to mature. Quarrels among practitioners can be turned into sharing and discussing. Their words are precious. Only if we can communicate and share can we help each other to improve.
Some practitioners are picky and look down on others. Actually, this is their own problem—they didn't look inward, so they look outward and get picky about others.
Finding One's Weaknesses and Shortcomings
The Buddhas in the Fa show us heavenly secrets, while the Buddhas in the dramas document genuine cultivation and the Buddhas around us display wisdom.
Studying the Fa alone may lead to wrong understandings. Reading articles on Minghui can help us build up the whole body and lead us to a bright future. By sharing face-to-face, we can learn from each other and correct ourselves.
The choice one makes is significant for one's personal cultivation as well as the success of the entire body. Actually, many practitioners who have left the whole body or stopped reading the articles on Minghui have already dropped in their levels, have improved slowly, or have been facing multiple obstacles.
Leaving the group and cultivating alone will make one narrowminded and cause troubles in cultivation. One may lose direction and even drop out.
“The lofty conduct that Dafa disciples have established in this environment--including every word and every deed--can make people recognize their own weaknesses and identify their shortcomings; it can move their hearts, refine their conduct, and enable them to make progress more rapidly. Therefore, new students or self-taught disciples have to go to the practice sites to do the exercises.” (“Environment,” Essentials for Further Advancement)
Fellow practitioners, please cherish Minghui, as it is the home for our souls. Please cherish the practitioners around us, for they are golden Buddhas.
I hope that everyone can read Master's article “Environment” in Essentials for Further Advancement again and cherish the precious relationships among us. It entails reading Minghui, sharing face-to-face, assimilating into the whole body, learning from others, and correcting oneself. Only be doing those things will we improve faster, walk righteously, and do better.