Looking Inward When Helping Fellow Practitioners
(Minghui.org) Master Li Hongzhi, the founder of Falun Dafa, said:
“I’ve often said that when two people have friction between each other, each one should examine him or herself. Not only should the two people with the friction examine themselves, but also the bystanders who happen to observe the incident should. That’s when you’ll really improve by leaps and bounds.” (Teaching the Fa at the Conference in Singapore)
Master Li has told us that sometimes, as genuine cultivators, we may find ourselves in a situation where we cannot let go of attachments and therefore our level does not improve. Then we find ourselves in a situation where we witness the shortcomings of others, which leads us to discover our own issues or attachments by observing or helping these people.
Sometimes I feel pleased when I am asked to help someone else. If one does not look inward, however, and the focus is only on helping another, the result may be the opposite or you will end up not making any improvement. If you really take your fellow practitioner as your mirror and search your inner self, then that practitioner will be fine without your help. Or you can improve yourself by seeking out and really discovering your own attachments.
For example, some time ago, someone said to me, “Please visit Ms. Wang (a fellow practitioner). Her situation is not good.” I went to see Ms. Wang and her problem seemed obvious. Sometimes, her understandings were still from the perspective of personal cultivation rather than based in Fa-rectification. Without denying the old forces with a firm understanding of Fa-rectification, her sickness karma was more serious. After sharing with her, she improved quickly. But I recognized that I was complacent about this.
I later met several other practitioners who had the same problem as Ms. Wang. After sharing with them, they still didn't seem to “get it,” but I didn’t know why. It wasn’t until one day when Ms. Wang swore at me that I realized that I had a problem, too! I look inward and was shocked: I had the same problem! After I realized it, I quickly upgraded my character. Later, whenever I came across such a problem, I would look inward and thus I quickly broke through this level of understanding.
From then on, I wasn’t attached to just pointing out someone else's attachments. After seeing their weak points, I would search my inner self and improve myself. Then my fellow practitioners also improved.
For example, when I was at a practitioner’s home, I saw that a lot of ordinary things had been put next to Master’s photo and I felt she didn’t respect Master. When I got home, I looked around and tried to find out in which way I didn’t show respect to Master. That night, I had a dream in which I saw Master lying on a broken bed. Suddenly I woke up and recalled that many local Dafa practitioners had been illegally arrested and taken away a few days before when I left Dafa books on the top of the closet. When I realized this, I immediately put the Dafa books back in a safe place.
A member of our Fa-study group recently suffered from sickness karma that appeared with symptoms of pericarditis. She was hospitalized repeatedly and unable to study the Fa with us. Other practitioners began to miss Fa-study for one reason or another during this period of time also, and then there were only two of us left in the group.
I wondered if this Fa study situation had anything to do with me. Upon searching within, I realized that this practitioner’s sickness karma reminded me that I should improve my thoughts related to a problem with our home water supply. I did not feel the river water was good enough for me to drink and bought an expensive water purifier. I then had a righteous thought: “As a Falun Dafa cultivator, should I be concerned that my body may be harmed by river water? How can it be restricted by the material of the Three Realms?” I finally broke through this attachment. The next day, I went to see this practitioner and found she had been discharged from the hospital!
Through this incident, I have deeply realized the magic of looking inward! Just as Master taught:
“For a cultivator, looking within is a magical tool.” (“Fa Teaching at the 2009 Washington DC International Fa Conference,” Collected Fa Teachings, Vol. IX)
A few days ago, several older practitioners at the practice site were dealing with sickness karma. I thought they had not denied the human notions of being old, sick, or dying, so I shared my understanding with them and they came to realize their shortcomings. But then I wondered why I had witnessed this. What did it have to do with me? One day, my sister told me, “When we reach 70, we should buy a house together.” I suddenly enlightened that I hadn’t denied the human notion of being old!
Then I realized that not only the thoughts of being old, sick, or dying, but any human thoughts are a particle of these notions. It is dangerous to harbor any ordinary thoughts, which can accumulate the substances of being old, sick, or dead. I have now let go of many attachments and human thoughts.