Thoughts after Studying “Another Stick Warning”
(Minghui.org) I began to practice Falun Dafa in 1998, though I do not consider myself diligent during these past 20 some years. I have been doing the three things we are supposed to do, but my character has improved slowly. During recent years, I started producing Dafa truth-clarification materials in my home, which motivated me to maintain a better cultivation state and put more heart into cultivation.
During these years I did not encounter any big tribulations, although I had sickness karma now and then. Sometimes I did well during these tests, sometimes not; yet I was unable to figure out the root cause. Recently, while reading Master's new article “Another Stick Warning,” it really was a heavy blow to the head that woke me up. I discovered a major problem that I have overlooked in my cultivation.
A few days ago, I had symptoms of asthma. I had trouble breathing, was exhausted and my hands and feet were cold as ice. I sat up all night and slept little; during the day, I had no strength to do anything and even had difficulty using the restroom. At first, I maintained righteous thoughts and negated what was happening. I recited the Fa in my heart and kept sending forth righteous thoughts.
After two days with little sleep or food, I had reached my limit. When my daughter, who is also a practitioner, came to visit me, I was very distressed and said to her, “Why is my cultivation still like this after so many years? I have dug out all of my attachments and have tried to get rid of them. The debts I owed should also be paid off. I cannot bear it anymore.” I asked her to send righteous thoughts for me.
My daughter's third eye is open. After sending righteous thoughts, she told me she saw that, in one of my previous lives, I had helped build the Great Wall by putting chains around the laborers’ necks and whipping them. I was shocked and felt I had no choice but to pay back what I owed from the past. So I silently endured my misery for several days until I got better. My daughter had a toothache for no reason later that day.
After reading Master Li’s new article “Another Stick Warning,” my daughter and I came to an understanding that I should not ask her to use her vision and tell me what she saw.
Master said in Another Stick Warning (Team Blue Translation):
“Other than Master, no living being will be allowed to know the true situation of Dafa disciples, because this directly involves the purity of the new universe.”
“Looking at how practitioners are cultivating, looking at what sickness karma practitioners have, and irresponsibly talking rubbish—this is interference.”
I realized that I shouldn’t seek advice from other practitioners when I had sickness karma. I’d wanted to find shortcuts through them and did not want to deal with hardships. The practitioners I’d sought out rarely had sickness karma, so I thought that they cultivated well and I admired them. I hoped they would solve my issues for me instead of relying on Fa study. My tribulations were the opportunities that Master provided for me to enlighten to and elevate myself, but I just grew sad and started to complain if I couldn’t pass the test.
Master also told us:
“A cultivator thus needs to cultivate by correct and upright truths. Going through hardship and suffering is an outstanding opportunity to remove karma, be cleansed of sin, purify the body, elevate your plane of thought, and rise in level—it’s an extraordinarily good thing.” (“The Closer to the End, the More Diligent You Should Be,” The Essentials of Diligent Progress Vol. III)
When I had sickness karma during the past two decades, my relative and my daughter, both practitioners, saw me through it. At the outset, they calmly shared their understandings on the Fa with me. When the tribulation persisted and happened repeatedly, they advised me what to do, so I got used to listening to them.
If they did not say anything, I had to ask them for answers. Even though I knew what I should do, I worried if I didn’t confirm it with them. Sometimes my daughter wanted me to suffer less and get better sooner, so she would tell me what to do. She often had a toothache for no reason afterward. I was stuck in this situation for years.
When I saw other practitioners going through tests of sickness karma, I sometimes judged them, pointed out their shortcomings, and then gave them advice. I brought up one Fa principle after another, often in a contemptuous or accusatory tone of voice. Instead of truly helping them, I often confused them and left them not knowing what to do.
Once an elderly practitioner had symptoms of a stroke. After I heard about it, I began to analyze her problems and searched for “prescriptions” for her. During my regular time for Dafa exercises that night, I didn’t do the exercises, but downloaded audios for more than a dozen articles on the Minghui website related to dissolving Party culture.
However, when I brought the audio recording to her the next day, she did not take it. She said that she had plenty of audio materials to listen to. Although I did not say anything in front of her, I was upset and complained to myself about my wasted effort. I believed that she had strong Party culture and I did my part to help her. It would be her loss if she didn’t accept my help. On my way home, I lost the storage card for the audios. I thought maybe it was due to my sentiment for the practitioner and did not think too much of it.
In the past few years, while my “prescriptions” did help several practitioners, they thought highly of me and were grateful to me. They liked to share with me or invited me to their group study from time to time. When I joined them, they barely had a chance to share. Instead, I took over and became the main speaker. All kinds of my attachments were enhanced, such as seeking fame, showing off, arrogance and jealousy. I did not behave like a cultivator. The old forces thus seized the opportunity to temper me with repeated sickness karma, which caused me to lose a lot of time to save people. I was not in good enough shape to validate the Fa.
My daughter often told me that my cultivation state was unstable: when I was in good shape, I showed off; when I wasn’t, I was knocked down by sickness karma. I was afraid that others would point their fingers at me for not cultivating well. She was right about my attachments and my lack of diligence. I believe that those practitioners admiring me was another factor causing my tribulations.
Deviating from the Fa
I also noticed some practitioners deviating from the Fa.
One practitioner said that he improved faster by reading the weekly Minghui magazine than studying the Fa. He could concentrate better on the magazines. However, practitioners' articles in the magazines only present their understandings of the Fa at their levels. No matter how good their enlightenment, they cannot be regarded the same the Fa.
One practitioner told other practitioners that he soared upward after studying Master’s words in “Upon gaining the Fa, you soared upward” (“A Reading Response,” Hong Yin III). He said he reached beyond Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance and asked them to soar upward as well so as to save people in other dimensions. He even said that there was no need to clarify the truth about Dafa to people. He appeared to be at a loftier level than others and wanted others to listen to him. He agitated a group of practitioners to follow him.
We tried to stop him by reporting him to the Minghui editors. We were advised not to give him an audience. But he is still leading a small circle of practitioners and talks nonsense now. I really hope Master's new article wakes him—and them—up.
I hope that my experience and the behavior of the above practitioners can alert practitioners with similar shortcomings. The Fa-rectification is at its final stage and there are really not many opportunities for us to correct ourselves. If we don’t correct ourselves, it could lead to damages to the Fa, an unpardonable sin. We are Dafa disciples, particles of the Fa. Safeguarding Dafa is our responsibility, which is also safeguarding ourselves.
Master told us:
“Those who irresponsibly interpret the Fa are leading people into the confines of their own understandings. So tell me: Are they protecting the Buddha Fa or disrupting it?” (“Lessons from Buddhism,” Zhuan Falun Volume II)