Young Practitioner: My Experience of Eliminating Lust and Desire
(Minghui.org) I’ve practiced Falun Dafa with my family since I was a child. I was born after the persecution began in 1999. I am now in my third year of university outside of China. I am grateful to revered Master Li for his mercy and for saving me. He has taken care of my cultivation, granted me a healthy body, and bestowed unlimited blessings upon me.
I was fortunate enough to meet a group of outstanding young fellow practitioners. A practitioner called Mai (pseudonym) did some matchmaking and introduced me to a male practitioner named Jian (pseudonym). On our first date, Mai warned us not to let ourselves down in this relationship and that we should cooperate with each other to play a greater role in saving people.
As Dafa practitioners, we should decide on our own ways of getting along as a couple and should not confuse our relationship with the love and affection of ordinary people. We must cultivate in an upright manner and walk well the path of cultivation.
Jian and I were also determined to cultivate diligently together and hold ourselves to high standards. However, before we met, I had been exposed to many deviant concepts, including strong expressions of lust. Through studying the Fa, reading the articles on Minghui.org, and communicating with fellow practitioners, I was awakened as if from a dream and felt deep regret and fear.
Giving In to the Temptation of Lust
In the big dye vat of ordinary society, I thought I was conservative, traditional, and high-minded and had always rejected the temptation of lustful relationships. I knew from Chinese tradition that a husband and wife should treat each other like honored guests, which is the orthodox approach.
But when real love was before me, I realized that I was acting according to modern concepts. I fell in love with Jian and entertained scenes in my mind from romantic movies, television dramas, and the experiences of ordinary friends. I was sucked in by this kind of sweetness and felt great.
On our third date, we seemed to have suddenly changed from being cooperative, respectful, and courteous fellow practitioners into an ordinary couple in love. We had very close bodily contact, letting lust freely control us.
I reassured myself that falling in love was supposed to be this way. After enjoying the feeling of being in love, we studied the Fa and did the exercises together. We mistakenly thought that we did not deviate from the Fa. Later, I felt that we should adjust our schedule to study the Fa and do the exercises first. But my righteous thoughts were like a flash in the pan. Afterward, our lustful thoughts surfaced again.
In fact, studying the Fa and doing the exercises before behaving lustfully together was just an attempt to hide the reality of our wrongdoing and to buy some kind of insurance for our behavior. We felt that, compared to our ordinary friends, we controlled ourselves well, as long as we didn’t cross the boundary of sexual intimacy. We engaged in flirting, casual visits, holding hands, and hugging as if they were natural.
“When someone is doing a wrong deed, he will not believe it if you point out to him that he is doing a wrong deed. That person indeed will not believe that he is doing something wrong. Some people evaluate themselves with the declined moral standard. Because the criteria for assessment have changed, they consider themselves better than others. No matter how the human moral standard changes, this characteristic of the universe remains unchanged, and it is the sole criterion that distinguishes good people from bad people. As a practitioner, one must then conduct oneself by following this characteristic of the universe rather than the standards of everyday people.” (Lecture One, Zhuan Falun)
Only then did I realize that I had abandoned the constraints taught in traditional Chinese culture about the relationship between a man and a woman. I was not behaving like a true practitioner but more like this person Master described:
“Once they stepped out the door, they would act differently and go their own way...” (Lecture One, Zhuan Falun)
I sent a message to Jian to apologize for attracting rotten stuff into our dimensions due to my lacking diligence in cultivation, not clearly grasping Fa principles, not guarding my speech, as well as having a shallow understanding of traditional culture. I said he should be my fellow practitioner first and my boyfriend second no matter what. According to the high-level standards, we had acted terribly even though we thought we had done well compared to non-practitioners.
At this juncture, we chose to be together and do better. I decided I must be responsible for our cultivation. As a girl, I should be more reserved, reminding Jian of the boundary between men and women because the old forces were waiting for any opportunity to allow lust to sneak in. Jian also recognized the issues when we got together. He reminded me to study the Fa more and quickly adjust myself as needed.
Adjusting Ourselves by Looking Within
When we met a couple of days later, Jian said that he had been studying the Fa a lot and had specifically read the articles on the Minghui website about lust. He was very calm and polite and paid attention to good manners in my presence. But I didn’t keep up with my Fa study and didn’t let go of my dependence on him.
I suddenly became uncomfortable. I wanted to hold his hand as I did before, but he cleverly joked and avoided it. At that time, I was affected by jealousy and resentment. I was as angry as the senior monk in the temple who saw the junior monk achieving enlightenment.
I thought to myself, “When he wanted to be close to me, I reminded him to study the Fa and do the exercises. I took the initiative to point out the problem. But now he is doing much better than me and keeping his distance from me.”
I couldn’t pass this hurdle in my mind until I read this section of one of Master’s poems while at group Fa study:
I was able to let go of the knot in my mind and suddenly became open-minded. Jian and I met while supporting our local Shen Yun show. What a sacred and pure relationship we had! Yet I didn’t walk the path well. Seeing that Jian had improved on this issue, I should have been happy for him so as to motivate myself to focus on how I studied and cultivated.
After the group Fa study ended, Mai talked with us for a long time since she saw that I was in a poor cultivation state. She said that she cherished us as much as her younger brother and sister. Seeing that we had not fundamentally realized the seriousness of indulging in lust, she was afraid that her matchmaking would ruin two young fellow practitioners. I was ashamed.
“The Fa can break all attachments, the Fa can destroy all evil, the Fa can shatter all lies, and the Fa can strengthen righteous thoughts.” (“Drive Out Interference,” Essentials for Further Advancement II)
When I got home, I started to study the Fa a lot. I copied down the passages about getting rid of lust, then read them repeatedly. I also read articles about this issue on the Minghui website. I realized that my previous grievance was not me, it was just the lust monster in my dimension, which was angry after its desire couldn’t get satisfied.
I calmed down to send righteous thoughts to clear away the interference of the lust demon and completely denied those bad thoughts. However, the scenes of my dating Jian would play back in my mind, making me feel both sad and nostalgic. It interfered with my sending righteous thoughts.
I wanted to get rid of these thoughts generated by my “false self” and not allow this rotten stuff to reflect scenes into my mind. I had to wake up my main consciousness. When I saw Jian again, I clearly felt that the previous sticky material in my field had been removed and our relationship was no different from other practitioners.
Seeing him standing there, I knew that this was the practitioner who was going to live with me in the future. At the time, there was basically no sense of possessiveness or sexual desire in my mind. We no longer had the desire to be together all day, nor were we afraid to meet up with each other because of our previous deviation. My mind was much clearer, and I was comforted by seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.
“In the medical sciences it’s believed that addiction occurs when the part of the nervous system associated with addictive behaviors is stimulated and develops to a sufficient degree. But that’s not it. What’s happening, then? Over time, that addictive substance accumulates, and forms inside of your body an identical version of you that comes to control you.” (“Fa Teaching at the 2019 New York Fa Conference,” Team Yellow Translation)
“Of course, it may not do anything other than crave drugs. It can’t bear to be without them. That’s because it is now alive. So what happens, then? As you might imagine, it will become progressively lighter if you stop using drugs, as a result of your body’s metabolic processes, until eventually it dies. Since it doesn’t wish to die, it compels you to take drugs again in order to strengthen it.” (“Fa Teaching at the 2019 New York Fa Conference,” Team Yellow Translation)
It took time to get rid of lust, and there were resurgences. For example, we spent lots of time talking on the phone. My understanding was that, due to our previous bodily contact, a body composed of lust had formed in another dimension. Now it was hungry and dying, so it instructed me to look through our chat records. It replenished its energy through our phone chatting, so I needed to pay more attention when we spoke and not say things that evoked attachments.
I also made an agreement with Jian that we wouldn’t let our guard down; if one of us saw the other doing wrong, we would bring it up without any concern. As fellow practitioners, we must let go of the attachment to saving face and the fear of being criticized. If one party hesitated to remind the other, we knew it was actually the rotten stuff hindering us. During these final moments, we must study the Fa more and take the right path.
In the limited time left for Fa-rectification cultivation, I shall practice diligently and earnestly to save more people. I hope that my understanding can provide a reference for other young practitioners.