My Grandma Helps Me Improve My Cultivation
(Minghui.org) When my father came home one day, my grandmother told him that she hadn’t eaten all day. I had actually cooked for her earlier and she ate.
Not only does grandmother lie, she pressures others to lie. My father and aunt (neither of them practice Falun Dafa) are used to going along with grandma’s lies. Whenever I tell her the truth, she yells at me. For example, when my father was on a business trip, grandmother asked when he was coming home. When I told her he’d return in two days she yelled at me and told me to admit that my father would be back shortly. I felt very frustrated and often argued with her.
“Under all circumstances, we must be good and kind to others, not to mention to our family members.” (Lecture Six, Zhuan Falun)
“...that as a practitioner one should not fight back when being punched or insulted, but should conduct oneself with a high standard.” (Lecture Four, Zhuan Falun)
I realized that I shouldn’t argue with her. She’s my elder and I should respect her instead of looking down on her. I also realized that I shouldn’t go along with her lies. Slowly, from being overwhelmed and not knowing how to deal with her, I’ve learned to resolve matters peacefully. Whenever my grandma demands to know where father is, I tell the truth. If she yells at me, I don’t take it to heart.
Grandma slowly began changing. She’s stopped pressuring me to tell lies. When father asks if she’s eaten, she stops and thinks, then answers truthfully. This was a big improvement for my grandma, a person who's been lying all her life.
Fighting Over The Bathroom
Ever since I was in elementary school, grandma and I always fought over the bathroom. Whenever I started to shower, grandma knocked on the door demanding to use the bathroom. She yelled, “Come out this instant, why do you always sneak into the bathroom when I have to use it!” She curses, twists the door knob and bangs on the door. If this happened only once or twice, it wouldn’t be an issue.
One winter day I shampooed my hair when my phone rang. Thinking it was urgent, I hurried out to answer it. As soon as I ran out grandma stepped into the bathroom. She stayed in there for a long time. As I waited the shampoo dried in my hair. I stood in the living room, cold and aggravated.
When I examined my behavior I realized that of the three principles, “Truthfulness, Compassion and Forbearance”, I hadn’t been practicing compassion or forbearance. Master taught us to think of others first and to be compassionate. Grandma really did have to use the bathroom every time. I should take shorter showers instead of always getting angry and arguing with her.
Now whenever I hear grandma’s footsteps in the hallway, I remind myself, “No matter what she says, I won’t be moved. I need to cultivate compassion and forbearance.” When grandma knocks on the door, I tell her how much longer I need the bathroom and that I’ll be out as soon as I can.
Grandma no longer curses at me when I use the bathroom. Now when she realizes someone’s in the bathroom, she quietly goes back to her room and waits. Sometimes if she really has to use it, she says, “Come out quickly.” Her tone is completely different.
Grandma’s change made me deeply understand the power of compassion. Once I looked within and cultivated my own compassion, my relationship with grandma improved.
Learning To Have Consideration for Others
Grandma recently began having trouble with her legs, but she refuses to use a cane. She has difficulty bending down when she uses the bathroom, and her urine and feces end up on the floor. Sometimes, she steps into it, and urine and feces are all over the house.
When she realizes what she’s done she tries to clean it up. Because of her poor eyesight, however, the feces get smeared everywhere. She doesn’t wash her hands and whatever she’s touched: windows, sink, wall, water faucet, washing machine, doorknob and light switch are stained.
On top of that, because grandma never showers (she has a really strong body odor), she leaves the bathroom in a horrendous state. Grandma has another bad habit, when it’s mealtime, she has to use the bathroom. She doesn’t close the door so the sounds and smell drift into the dining table.
“Wherever we practice Falun Gong will become a good place. We’re remaking the environment, not selecting the environment.” (Teaching the Fa at the Assistants’ Fa Conference in Changchun)
I thought about the practitioners who are illegally detained. They did not give up because they were frightened. Instead it made them more determined to cultivate. Our environment is much better than theirs, how does this qualify as a hardship?
One summer night, the bathroom light was broken. Grandma had just finished using the bathroom and the smell drifted all the way to the bedrooms. My mom had to meet with other practitioners, so the job of cleaning the bathroom fell on me. As I pushed open the bathroom door, I noticed the tiles and the sink was smeared with feces. On top of that the bathroom light was broken. I was determined to get through this tribulation. I took a flashlight and thoroughly cleaned the bathroom. As I surveyed the clean bathroom, I could feel many of my attachments had been eliminated.
My resentment and disgust towards my grandma is slowly disappearing and I’m learning to be considerate of others. I stopped complaining about how the bathroom smells. She’s actually very weak and totally dependent on her medication. Because I practice Falun Dafa I’m very healthy. What reason do I have to complain about grandma?
Though many things about grandma still disturb me, Dafa has taught me how to be a good person, and to think of others. My heart has become more open. Dafa has taught my how to understand the joy of suffering and allowed me to have an open, cheerful and kind heart.