Seeing the Light at the End of the Tunnel After Letting Go of Attachments
(Minghui.org)I am a single mother. My husband died in 2003, the year my daughter entered college, and my son was studying drawing at a liberal arts college. I had a small vendor business to provide for us. Life was difficult.
Also at that time, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) was heavily persecuting Falun Dafa. They searched, illegally arrested, and sentenced practitioners everywhere. I remained steadfast despite financial pressure and fear of being arrested, because I am a Dafa practitioner. I have Dafa and Master guiding me along this path.
Every day, I went out to run my vendor business, but my focus was to validate the Fa. I handed out truth-clarification fliers, exposed the persecution, posted Dafa informational materials in public, and sent forth righteous thoughts to eliminate the evil. It was Master who helped and protected me during the most difficult time of my life. During those years, I encountered numerous tribulations, large and small. Every single one of them was excruciating and severely tested my xinxing. As a result, my xinxing was elevated.
As time passed, both of my children graduated from college and started working. I could finally relax a little and felt relieved. However, the situation didn’t last long. My son decided to quit his job and start his own business. He made some money with his business, but then he lost all of his money and was heavily in debt. He quit his business and he came to live with me. However, he didn’t even try to find another job and just stayed at home for two years.
Nothing on the path of cultivation is a coincidence. Facing this situation, Master’s Fa suddenly appeared in my mind.
“How can you be prepared, then? If you can always be compassionate and calm, you will handle the issues that arise in your life well since you will have a buffer, in a sense.” (The Fourth Talk, Zhuan Falun)
I let go of my emotions and said to him calmly, “Nothing goes as planned in life. It is normal to gain something, and to lose something. You need to pick yourself up when you have fallen down. For a young and ambitious man, owing one or two hundred thousand yuan to the bank is not a big deal. You have the ability to pay it back within one or two years.”
Everything I said to him fell on deaf ears, as he wouldn’t listen to me. Whenever I tried to say something to him, he would talk back to me, and sometimes he became very violent and smashed things. Sometimes, he took his anger out on me, as if I was the one who cost him his business. Every day, I cooked for him and made him feel at home. However, he didn’t appreciate anything and had a really bad attitude towards me. At times, he got so angry it felt like he wouldn’t stop until he tore up the whole place.
I looked inside myself and found that my biggest attachment was my wish for my son to become a successful person one day. I also discovered that I am constantly worried about everyone in this family. I wanted to tell my children how to live, and know what my children are doing. When my son lost his business and came home, I wanted to plan everything out for him.
“But that sounds like wishful thinking to me. For one, you don’t have the power to change another person’s life or fate, ultimately, even if they are your closest of kin. Could you really change a person’s destiny? And secondly, if you really were to have no worries on the home front and be free of all troubles, what would your spiritual practice consist of? It’s hard to grow spiritually if your life is full of comfort and ease. So it’s not how you may have imagined it, with conventional thinking.” (The Fourth Talk, Zhuan Falun)
I realized another meaning of this paragraph of Master’s teaching. I am a cultivator and not an ordinary person. I must measure myself using higher principles. I shouldn’t struggle internally when dealing with the conflicts of family; instead, I should let go of my attachments and face it directly. A cultivator must take the path guided by the Master, measure everything with the principles of the Fa and do what a Dafa practitioner must do.
Cultivating Instead of Wallowing in Sentimentality
During the last two years, things have changed in our family. I am almost 60 years old, and I moved to a new place. I closed my vendor business, and my monthly income is less than 1,000 yuan. I couldn’t work to earn money anymore. On the other hand, my son has reached the age where he would be supporting his own family and supporting this house. However, he is creating karma by staying with me and not working and earning his stay.
I am no longer burdened by the attachment of family or worried by ordinary things. I have rearranged my daily routine, and am committed to doing Dafa projects every day. In the morning I go out to clarify the truth to people face-to-face, and in the afternoon I study Master’s Fa lectures. At night I either hand copy Zhuan Falun or read Zhuan Falun until 10 p.m. I don’t even feel sleepy by midnight when I send forth righteous thoughts. This has yielded great results.
Early each morning, I get up and do the fifth exercise, and then memorize the Fa for one hour. I have memorized Hong Yin IV, which took me about four months. I am now trying to memorize Essentials for Further Advancement. I memorize the Fa when I am cooking, doing laundry and other chores.
After a year of continuing in this routine, I noticed that my thoughts have become purer, and I have less human emotions. I have been able to remain calm and handle complicated issues easily. I haven’t felt annoyed by my son, who did nothing at home. And I gained a more optimistic view of life.
A relative asked me, “Aren’t you annoyed that a fully grown man is idle and doing nothing in your house? My older sister died because she had to help pay her son’s debt, and she was constantly worrying about him.” (That sister was also a cultivator, but she couldn’t let go of her attachment to family.)
I replied, “I am more carefree now. I am different from your sister. My attitude about the issue is different, and the way I approach the issue is different as well. I handle the issue with the principles of Dafa, but your sister handled it with human notions.”
However, right after the New Year, I became worried because our financial stability became shaky. I suddenly wanted to get a job and make some money. Nowadays relationships between people have become very complicated, and many holiday and social situations require one to save money for occasions such as the red envelopes during Chinese New Year, gift money for a marriage ceremony, the white envelope for funerals and so on. Cultivators also have to follow these social expectations in society.
I was hesitant when I reached out to a fellow practitioner to ask her to find me a job. I told her that I wanted a part-time job for six months so it wouldn’t interfere with my doing Dafa projects, and I could have some sort of income for our family. I stood in front of Master’s picture and said, “Master, I don’t know whether or not I should work again. What should I do? Is it possible for me to be like other practitioners and cultivate without worrying about my finances, and just doing Dafa projects?”
Just as I was thinking about all these things, my son said, “Mother, I signed a contract with a website because they really liked my paintings. You don’t need to look for work anymore.”
I said, “Great! You can make some money and pay off your debt. Start fresh and don't leave any regrets in life.”
He said cheerfully: “Mother, so many websites wanted to sign a contract with me. I couldn’t find these websites when I was searching previously, but suddenly they all appeared and wanted to sign with me.”
I didn’t answer him. I knew that I had to let go of my attachment to my children, after which the old forces couldn’t interfere any longer. Master has resolved all my past debt; Master often gave me hints so I could elevate my level and helped me reject the arrangements by the old forces. Thank you, Master.
I can finally cultivate without worrying about my financial situation. I must be diligent in my cultivation and save more people in order to fulfill my vow, repay Master for saving me and return to our home in the heavens.