Learning to Cultivate with Sincerity
(Minghui.org) I was very fortunate in 1994 to listen to a recording of Master Li Hongzhi's (the founder) lectures in Jinan City. I soon began to practice Falun Dafa.
My mom is 82 now, and she began to practice Falun Dafa in 1996. Before practicing Dafa, my mom had many illnesses; the most severe was a stomach disease. She received various medical treatments, but she did not get better. She would be in bed face down and vomit mouthfuls of blood. I said to her, “Only Master Li can save you. You should practice Falun Dafa.” I brought her a copy of the book Zhuan Falun.
Afterward, I rode my bike to her home every day after dinner to read Zhuan Falun to her. Slowly, she was able to lift her head and eat a little bit of porridge.
One night she was half asleep and saw a person who walked up to her bed. He pulled a huge snake out of her body and threw it aside. My mom was very scared and yelled, “Kill it! Kill it!” She saw a big foot stomp on the snake, and then everything disappeared.
My mom told me about her dream the next day. I told her that it was Master Li cleansing her body. Maybe she had a snake possession, and the stomach disease was caused by it. I told her that she should treasure what happened and cultivate well. With her disease gone, she was able to eat any kind of food. She then began to go to a nearby Fa study site to do the exercises. She was very diligent and her xinxing quickly improved.
The former dictator of China, Jiang Zemin, initiated the persecution of Falun Dafa on July 20, 1999. My husband and I went to Beijing twice to appeal for the right to practice. We were brought back to a local detention center and later detained at my workplace. Our home was ransacked. We were also fined, not given our full salaries, and eventually fired. My husband was sentenced to 11 years in prison.
We lost our cultivation environment due to the chaotic persecution, and gradually my mom and I were not diligent anymore. Her health deteriorated, and she went to the hospital for treatment. I lost my job and had to look for other things to do to make a little money so that my son could continue going to school. We became just like ordinary people, and maybe not even as good as some ordinary people. Not until the last two or three years did we come back to cultivation. After we took up the practice again, my mom gradually became healthy.
I felt that my mom didn't know to cultivate her xinxing, however, and she would get mad even with small things. I saw it again and again. My attitude was also changing: from initially discussing it and sharing with her, to then arguing with her, to looking down on her, and even feeling a little disgusted by it. I wondered why she would look for trouble with me repeatedly, and sometimes even purposely, and why she seemed to try to make me angry on purpose. Maybe it was because my emotions and sentimentality toward her as a daughter were very strong.
After my dad died 12 years ago, my mom lived with me and suffered a lot with all the things that happened. I always felt that I owed her so much because I could not provide a good living for her. I did not look for my own issues or cultivate myself based on the Fa. So these tribulations lasted for two to three years, and I still could not get through to them. I felt very tired and it was very painful.
One evening last year, my mom and I went to another practitioner's home to do the fifth exercise. As I was sitting there, a sentence came into my mind: “A fellow practitioner is like a mirror.” Then I remembered two quotes from Master's Fa:
“It would be good if they could manage to search within themselves for the things that they have been able to find in others.” (“A Dialogue with Time,” Essentials for Further Advancement)
“Cultivation is about cultivating one's self. No matter what kind of state emerges, you need to take a hard look at yourself.” (“Teaching the Fa at the Fa Conference at the U.S. Capital,” Collected Fa Teachings, Vol. VII).
I suddenly awakened: all of these issues were actually intended for me to eliminate my own attachments. I saw so many issues in my mom, but she wouldn't listen to my advice. All of these were issues because I only used the Fa to cultivate others and not myself!
Wasn't my mom's state a reflection of my own cultivation state? For instance, I had always criticized her for falling asleep while doing the meditation and being drowsy and low-spirited during the day. But I was shocked when I finally compared myself with her. Even though I wasn't falling asleep or drowsy, my mind was never completely focused when I studied or sent forth righteous thoughts. My mind was filled with all kinds of things from the past, due to all sorts of attachments.
I had a competitive mentality, resentment, jealousy, selfishness, and feelings of hurt. All of these attachments and human notions are real and alive in other dimensions, and at that moment I felt like they were all looking right at me. I was shocked. How would I be able to calm my mind with all these strong attachments? For so many years, I was only cultivating on a superficial level. I had used the Fa to measure others, but not myself. I often looked at the shortcomings of others, but never considered that what I saw in other practitioners were reflections of my own cultivation.
It has been about half a year since I realized all of this. Now I'm gradually learning to cultivate myself. When I encounter something, I don't criticize others anymore, but instead I'm able to look inside myself. During this time my mom also changed a lot. She no longer randomly gets angry at me, and she is now more considerate of me. The relationship between us has grown to be more harmonious and calm. I know that this is because my xinxing has improved.
I still have many more human notions. I'll gradually eliminate all of them and improve myself according to the Fa.