Awakening from Holding Ordinary People’s Notions
(Minghui.org) Greetings, Master and fellow practitioners!
I’m a Falun Dafa practitioner from Geneva, Switzerland. After I started practicing Dafa in February 2018, my entire worldview changed significantly. I no longer wanted to waste time by going out partying, drinking and shopping with friends, or watching videos on the Internet. It was Master who awakened me and helped me realize the life I had been leading was ridiculous.
Whenever I think of what Dafa has done for me, no human language can describe my gratitude.
Master told us on so many occasions that time was limited, that we must seize the time, and do what we were supposed to do–save sentient beings. I was deeply moved. After several months of cultivation, I truly understood the urgency of helping people understand the truth about Falun Dafa. However, my attachments affected my understanding of the Fa in a lot of ways.
Getting Rid of Notions
During my two years of cultivation, I sometimes felt I was treated unfairly, became impatient, and consequently behaved inappropriately when clarifying the truth. I sometimes spoke in a satirical and condescending tone, or sounded unfriendly, which could push people away and cause them to forever lose the opportunity of being saved.
I realized that if I thought I was treated unfairly and was not calm, how could my energy eliminate the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) deception and reach people’s hearts? If I used the old forces’ way to express myself, how could people understand what I told them?
I used to classify people into different categories. For example, cool and uncool, smart and unwise. I put myself into this or that category, according to whom I was with. When I felt “not cool” or “unwise,” I wanted to hide. When I felt I was cooler or smarter than others, I became very bossy and condescending, and ignored others’ needs. In either case, I felt pressure.
After practicing Dafa, I stopped classifying people. I respected all those around me and treated them with kindness, whether they were cool, smart or not. I no longer categorized myself, because I understood that being truly smart was wisdom, and succeeding in cultivation did not require everyday people’s knowledge or achievements.
I stopped planning for my future; instead I chose to follow Master’s arrangements.
Measuring Myself Against Dafa, Not Everyday People
Although I knew the classifications formed during my adolescence existed only in my mind, I had concerns about them, which formed a new notion. I began to have doubts about myself and wondered if I could practice Dafa. I felt I was not worthy. I felt it was too late for me to start practicing and that there was not enough time to get rid of my attachments.
I went to another extreme because the world was either black or white for me, and I did not know how to take the middle road. I was very worried that people would not understand or respect my faith. I was worried what labels they would put on me when they found out I was practicing Dafa. I knew some young people who had been misled regarded Falun Gong as a cult.
Students at my university were promoting socialism. After reading the Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party and How the Specter of Communism Is Ruling Our World, I realized that people around me were deceived by the evil communist specter, but they did not know it.
I felt so lonely because they didn’t know what I knew. I realized that my truth-clarification efforts could not awaken people but instead pushed them to think I was strange.
When I was little, my mother told me I must have a strong personality to be appreciated. She wanted me to actively express myself and be “cool” like other children. I complied and became cunning and complicated. I knew exactly what to say and how to say it so people would think I was “cool.” I pursued fame and began to despise those who were kind, simpleminded and humble.
“In the eyes of gods, if a person's mind is simple and clean, gods consider him a good person. And if a person's mind is complicated, then gods consider him bad, because as gods see it, hasn't it become complicated because of attachments formed in the human world? Isn't being complicated a result of being attached to the human world? So this is a truth in cultivation.” (“Teaching the Fa at the Meeting with Asia-Pacific Students,” Collected Fa Teachings, Vol. VI)
Identifying My Attachments
Recently, I understood why people around me didn’t recognize Dafa. Like them, I had also formed a lot of notions amid social interactions during childhood, adolescence and college. My peers and I learned to develop “critical thinking” and regard all things as evil and dangerous even when they were just and fair.
I cared a lot about saving face and always wanted to be the “cool” person in the eyes of others, so I didn’t expect to be looked down upon by them for the righteous path I chose to follow. I was ashamed to say Dafa was extraordinary. I was sad for giving up popular things such as speaking loudly, judging and making fun of others, partying and smoking, and so on. I even felt uneasy for being a kind person.
To keep myself from being judged by others, I used Dafa to judge those around me and categorize them: lustful, self-proclaimed communists, and drug addicts. When others made mistakes, I looked down on them instead of pointing it out to them gently and kindly. I was full of resentment, afraid of losing face, and unhappy when criticized because I was self-righteous.
I thus went to another extreme, became skeptical of everyday people’s media, and made negative comments regarding politicians and social phenomena.
Keeping in Mind That Saving People is the Fundamental Issue
Now, I understand that I must conform to the state of ordinary society rather than talk about some things that people cannot accept. I have the right to be simpleminded and kind, but I cannot force others to understand me or recognize what I do. I should take what others label me lightly, because I know Dafa is righteous and no criticism can prevent me from assimilating to “Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance.”
I do not need to defend myself or explain to people why the world is unjust. The only thing I need to do is to save people. The power of compassion can break all misconceptions, including those of my own and others. I won't let others’ judgments affect my righteous actions.
Master said in the Fa,
“Only when you have an attachment will you be affected inside; if you don’t have an attachment, it will be like a breeze passing over you—you won’t feel a thing. If you hear someone say that you want to commit some horrible crime, you’ll just find it amusing. (Master laughs) You will think, “How could that be possible?” and will laugh it off. You won’t take it seriously at all. Since you don’t even have that thought, those words can’t touch you.” (Fa Teaching Given at the 2014 San Francisco Fa Conference)
I no longer wanted to give the evil any excuses for persecuting me or be influenced by the mainstream media that doesn’t tell the truth. When I heard others lie, I no longer wanted to insist on my ideals. I believed these things were testing whether I was unmoved.
No matter how eloquent I am, or how well I know the ins and outs of the CCP and Marxism, if my heart is not pure or I cannot be a truly good person who wants to save people, then there is no need for me to practice Dafa.
I abandoned the idea of being treated unfairly as a Dafa practitioner. The world’s people are the ones truly persecuted. If I am blinded by my attachments, I would not be able to do what I am supposed to do.
Thank you, my fellow practitioners, for setting a good example for me and pointing out my mistakes! I will cultivate greater compassion and get rid of all my bad notions.
(Presented at the 2020 Online Cultivation Experience Sharing Conference in France)