Cultivation Is Not Just Going Through the Motions
(Minghui.org) When I operated a loading crane at work, I always wanted to be faster than my coworkers and receive praise from them. Since most of them knew that I practiced Falun Dafa, I wanted them to see that a person who practices Falun Dafa is better than others. Whenever I saw two cranes in operation at the same time, I saw it as an opportunity to compete with my colleague. Sometimes, in order to perform well at work, I recited the Fa or sent forth righteous thoughts in advance. I always feared being left behind by others, and sometimes I even counted on them to make mistakes in their work.
I recall that a coworker and I were once loading 10 railroad cars. I thought to myself, “I will show you how capable Dafa practitioners are!” After we finished, I looked at the results as if it were a battle: I had loaded six and a half cars. Not only did I do my part, but I also loaded an extra car for my coworker. At that moment, I felt self-inflated, proud, and superior. I felt light and like I was floating when climbing out of my crane. I was a winner!
Sometimes, I immodestly said to them, “I am fast, so you can take more time for your break.” This was also to have others think that I was very kind.
Another time, I was loading cars with one of my coworkers and thought, as a Dafa disciple, I could not lose to him: “If I let him get the upper hand, I will feel embarrassed when I climb down off the crane.” With this attitude, my peaceful state of mind became tense. It was as if I was getting ready to fight. But for some reason, the crane I was operating suddenly didn't cooperate with me very well. After finishing the job, my coworker had been a few minutes faster than me. I felt terrible for losing face.
At that moment, a line of Master Li's Fa teaching reflected in my mind, “There's something you must pay attention to: you are validating the Fa, not validating yourselves.” (“Teaching the Fa at the Meeting with Asia-Pacific Students” in Collected Fa Teachings, Vol. VI)
I always thought that I was validating Dafa, but I was in fact validating myself. More specifically, I was using Dafa to satisfy my own attachment to fame. Enjoying competing with coworkers exposed my competitive mentality. Demonstrating my ability in front of coworkers exposed my mentality of showing off. Getting excited when I won the competition exposed my zealotry. Feeling depressed when other people performed well exposed my jealousy. In trying to prove myself, the attachment to seeking fame was inflated. In retrospect, I feel heartily ashamed.
It Turned Out That I Was Not Compassionate
One night on my way home, a van drove past me. There were no street lights. I heard a “bump,” which sounded like something was dropped from the van. The driver kept going and didn't seem to notice it.
I walked over with my bicycle and saw that it was a high-powered welding machine. It looked like it would be worth over a thousand yuan. The driver was gone, and there was no one around. I moved the welding machine to the roadside by the wall and waited for the owner to come and claim it. After waiting for 10 minutes and not seeing anyone show up, I thought they probably wouldn't be coming back for it.
Then I asked Master to have them come back for it, since I had to explain the facts about the persecution to them. While I was thinking this, one of my relatives drove by and asked me what was going on. I said that I moved a welding machine out of the road. He told me to put it in his car. I shook my head.
At that moment, a lady was approaching me and anxiously asking, “Did you see a welding machine when you came here?” My relative did not say anything. I said, “Don't worry, I have it.” She immediately seemed quite relieved and made a phone call to tell someone she found it. Not long after, the driver arrived. They were a couple.
They insisted on giving me 100 yuan and invited me to dinner. I said, “I cannot take your money. If I was greedy, I would not have returned the welding machine to you.” I went on to say that it seemed that we had a predestined relationship. I explained to them the beauty of Falun Dafa and about withdrawing from the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and its affiliated organizations. They sincerely thanked me. With my palms pressed together in front of my chest (heshi), I said, “If you want to thank someone, you should thank my Master. It is my Master who taught us to do so.” The driver imitated me in doing heshi and said thank you!
It seemed on the surface that I had done a good job by returning the welder to the owner and, at the same time, helped them withdraw from the CCP. However, when I think back on my mindset at the time, I feel that I did not do very well. When the driver dropped the tool, I didn't initially think of them or the trouble they would face, nor did I feel empathy. Instead, I thought about myself, “Oh, great! Chances are coming for me to save more people.” Since I tasted the benefit of doing this, every time I went out, I would think, “Wouldn't it be wonderful if I could always find things other people lost? It would present a safe opportunity to save them. Plus, I wouldn't have to worry about them leaving before I finished telling them about the persecution. Isn't it like killing two birds with one stone?” Now when I think back about it, I counted on others to lose things so that I could effortlessly help save them. How obvious was my selfishness?
Through a few incidents like these, I realized that I used Dafa to gain fame and save face. I clarified the truth just to check off something asked of me. Cultivation is a serious matter; it is not merely going through the motions. When I think back about my cultivation attitude at the beginning, I feel I was foolish then. Although I validated the Fa and told people the truth, I did not genuinely cultivate in Dafa, and I did not raise my xinxing.
I will diligently cultivate on my path of cultivation and conduct myself according to the requirements of Dafa.