A Fellow Practitioner Reflects My Attachments
(Minghui.org) I started to practice Falun Dafa in 1998. Like other practitioners, I have experienced ups and downs in cultivation. With Master Li's protection, I am walking my cultivation path and doing the three things a practitioner should do. I will share a recent experience of how I helped an elderly practitioner overcome sickness karma.
Connecting to a Practitioner in Need
I once clarified the truth about Falun Dafa to a woman in my neighborhood. She said she was a practitioner. I was surprised and asked how many years she had been practicing. She said she practiced on and off. Her mom was also a practitioner, but was in bad shape and had been in a wheelchair for 10 years. She asked for my phone number and left.
In December 2019, that woman Niu (pseudonym) called me. She said her mother was not doing well and asked me to visit. When I got to her home, I saw an elderly lady with a sallow complexion. She was vomiting with her eyes closed. I said to Niu and her mother, “Don't be afraid. We have Master.”
Niu told me that her mother had been in hospital for a day, but the injections and medication didn’t work and they realized she couldn’t stay there. When she got home, her mother threw up even more after taking nutritional supplements.
I assured her that everything was all right as Master was purifying her body. I asked the elderly practitioner to recite in her mind, “Falun Dafa is good. Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance is good.” Then I sat down to send forth righteous thoughts.
After a while, she felt much better. I read On Dafa (Lunyu) to her. With Master’s compassion and protection, she was able to overcome this tribulation.
The Practitioner’s Background
The elderly practitioner obtained the Fa in 1996 and was now 86 years old. She said that before she practiced Falun Dafa she was so sick she was dying. All her illnesses disappeared soon after starting cultivation. Her complexion became fair, and she began menstruating again. She was diligent and organized others to study the Fa together.
She said there was one xinxing test she did not pass. It had to do with a watch. Her eldest daughter gave her an expensive watch, which she treasured. As she was going to the group study, she took it off and put it in her pocket before boarding a bus. She wanted to put the watch on again, but it was no longer in her pocket. She thought to herself, “I should not get angry. I should just ask the people around me.” Instead of doing so, she started to swear. Suddenly, there was a sharp pain in her arm, but she didn’t think too much about it.
When she arrived at the Fa study group, she told everyone what happened. The son of a practitioner said he could help her find her watch. However, his mother signaled at him to convey not to do so. Her resentment grew, and she left without studying the Fa. To this day, she still had not forgiven that woman.
She told me how she suffered as a child, and how she saved a lot of money to help her daughters after she became a Dafa practitioner. However, local practitioners told her she was not in line with the Fa. She was not convinced and said she spent all her money on others, not herself. Then she complained that she was getting old and no one came to visit her. She wept bitterly.
I patiently tried to enlighten her, “This is all human sentimentality! All of it must be put down.” But she continued. Her daughter then interrupted her, “Mother, why are you still talking about it? What’s the use of mentioning these things? Isn’t it all about human attachments?”
She replied, “I just hate them!” I felt so sad in my heart, seeing her entangled in sentimentality and all sorts of everyday notions.
Showing Signs of Improvement
Through reading the Fa, the elderly woman improved very quickly. She was able to push her wheelchair and go to the bathroom by herself when we met the second time. I went to her home every other day to study the Fa with her. After reading, we shared our experiences.
She regretted wasting time in the past. “Our Fa study in the past 10 years was useless. We just read, but did not know what we were reading. We never shared our understanding of the Fa or our experiences. We often chatted about daily life, or gossiped about others. Master gave us hints via my granddaughter, who said we did not act like practitioners and asked why we were talking about people behind their backs. We did not take what she said seriously, but passed her off as just a child.”
She went on to tell me that the Fa study group fell apart. Some practitioners in the group were detained, some fell ill, and some moved away. She cried and said she really missed a practitioner who moved to another city.
I read a paragraph from Zhuan Falun to her:
“Cultivation must take place through tribulations so as to test whether you can part with and care less about different kinds of human qing and desires. If you are attached to these things, you will not succeed in cultivation. Everything has its karmic relationship. Why can human beings be human? It is because human beings have qing. They live just for this qing. Affection among family members, love between a man and a woman, love for parents, feelings, friendship, doing things for the sake of friendship, and everything else all relate to this qing. Whether a person likes to do something or not, is happy or unhappy, loves or hates something, and everything in the entire human society comes from this qing. If this qing is not relinquished, you will be unable to cultivate. If you break free from this qing, nobody can affect you. An everyday person’s mind will be unable to sway you. What comes and replaces it is benevolence, which is a nobler thing. Of course, it is not easy to cut off this qing right away. Cultivation is a long process and a process of gradually giving up your attachments. Nonetheless, you must be strict with yourself.” (Lecture Four, Zhuan Falun)
I said she should compare everything to the Fa. She was silent. Niu said her mother was dominant; she had to have the final say on everything, no one could criticize her, and practitioners felt they had to listen to her or she would get mad. No one dared to argue with her!
I also noticed her attachments of resentment, jealousy, showing off, competitiveness, arguing, avoiding criticism, seeking self-interest, and looking down on others. Sometimes I pointed these out to her, and she protested, “How can my heart be set aside after I see all that’s going on in my family!?”
Looking inward in every situation is the magic key in cultivation. I went home to study the Fa calmly and looked inward for my issues. Master said:
“Cultivation is about reforming yourself, and things are indeed as I’ve described.” (“Fa Teaching Given at the Epoch Times Meeting” from Collected Fa Teachings, Vol. X)
I wondered why I saw this fellow practitioner’s attachments? They were demonstrated so vividly in front of me. Was this telling me that I also had those attachments? I did have them a few years ago, but I removed them via Fa study and sending forth righteous thoughts. I felt that I was free of those attachments. So why were they being displayed? I looked carefully at my every thought, word, and deed but I did not find any attachments that stood out.
One day while I was cooking, a thought came to my mind: Why did I think that others would say I was a wonderful person after I chatted with them? After sharing with fellow practitioners, I unconsciously believed they would praise me, saying I had better enlightenment quality and a clearer understanding of Fa principles.
I was shocked. Why would I think this way? What was this? I didn’t pay attention to such thoughts before but today I had them again. Wasn’t this seeking fame? When I dug deeper, I realized this was wanting to hear pleasing things.
Another scenario came to mind. During group Fa study, three practitioners were sitting lower than I was. At that time, I thought I was better than them. Wasn’t this looking down on others? I also remembered a dream where I was standing in a high place, and some practitioners were looking up at me from a lower position. I woke up thinking I was better and higher than them.
When Master saw that I still was not aware of my attachments, he arranged for this elderly practitioner to reflect my problems. I had all the attachments that she had, especially showing off! I was so ashamed. Master was helping me! I put my hands together in heshi (palms pressed together in front of the chest) and sincerely thanked Master.
I dug out a bunch of everyday attachments, which scared me. Wasn’t this close to demonic interference from one’s own mind? I almost went astray! Master said:
“Even in this class, there are people who think quite highly of themselves right now and speak with a different attitude. It is taboo even in Buddhism for one to find out what one is all about.” (Lecture Six, Zhuan Falun)
How could I have such a dirty mind? I also had an attachment to lust. I wanted to expose all of them. They were hidden so deep! It was horrible! If that practitioner did not hold up a mirror for me to see myself, I would still think I was pretty good!
I immediately sent forth righteous thoughts to disintegrate the attachments completely, to eliminate all harmful notions and bad thoughts, and to dissolve all unrighteousness. I did not want them. They must be eliminated!
When these defeated things were removed, I felt at once that I could be together with other practitioners harmoniously. I didn’t feel superior to them any more. If I could also cultivate humility, I would see the good points of each fellow practitioner.
Letting Go of Myself and Truly Thinking of Others
I had a lot of worries when helping the elderly practitioner. She did not know how to look inward at her own shortcomings. Sometimes, I wondered whether I should continue to help her. But I felt it was wrong to not support a practitioner when she was in trouble.
All of these thoughts were churning, and I could not make up my mind. I was afraid she might die at any moment; moreover, there were surveillance monitors in her subdivision, and the police might notice me. I knew I must send forth righteous thoughts to eliminate my fears. I kept studying the Fa to correct myself and strengthen my righteous thoughts.
Then the CCP virus (coronavirus) broke out in January this year. I started to ponder whether I should continue to visit this woman. I knew all these were everyday notions. I thought I should study the Fa first, so I picked up one of Master’s collected works and saw the following:
“True compassion doesn’t have any selfishness mixed in, and one will, when dealing with anyone, or sentient beings in general, look at things with righteous thoughts and loving kindness.” (“What is a Dafa Disciple” from Collected Fa Teachings, Vol. XI)
I was stunned. I read this paragraph over and over. This was Master enlightening me. All my concerns were selfish thoughts! Master also said:
“The Dafa disciples who have cultivated well, however, truly cannot be interfered with—not even in the least. Moreover, their righteous thoughts are strong, and they are helping others at the same time. They are truly helping Master rectify the Fa.” (“Fa Teaching Given at the 2010 New York Fa Conference” from Collected Fa Teachings, Vol. XI)
“Helping Master.” I repeated these words several times. I knew that helping this woman was “helping Master.” I knew what to do. I sent forth righteous thoughts to completely disintegrate all the evil beings and factors that interfered with my reaching out to other practitioners. Helping them was what I should do. No one could stop me. I would let go of myself and think of others first. My body and mind suddenly felt so relaxed. I decided to go to her house in the afternoon.
A few minutes later, Niu called and asked, “Sister, do you have time? My mother...” After I hung up, I got ready to go to Niu’s home. My husband said, “Are you still going? This is a pandemic period!” I said, “I have to go. I know what to do.”
When I arrived there, I saw a room full of family members. The elderly practitioner had difficulty breathing, and her mouth was wide open. I was very calm and said, “Don’t be afraid. It will be okay. We have Master. Please ask Master to save you!”
I was also begging Master to save her. I sat down and started to send forth righteous thoughts. Then I opened Zhuan Falun and let her see Master’s picture. I began to recite On Dafa to her.
She gradually came to her senses and said in a weak voice, “Master, help me. Master, help me...” I told her and Niu, “We can all say together, ‘Falun Dafa is good. Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance is good.’” As she recited the words, her voice became clear. She suddenly cried out loudly, “Thank you, Master for saving me… I’m sorry… I will cultivate well in the future and go home with Master!”
Seeing her getting better, I asked, “Were you getting angry again?” She nodded.
“Remember this lesson. Don’t get angry again. Preserve your virtue and look inward when you experience conflicts. Don’t let the old forces take advantage of you.”
Her family was thrilled and said, “Thank you. Thank you!” I replied, “It's all done by Master. Please thank Master!”
There were four significant instances like this. One time Niu said, “My mom told me to get her shroud ready. She doesn’t want to bear it any more. It’s too hard to suffer like this over and over again. She wants to give up.”
I told her to give up this thought and dissolve it quickly, since it was not what she wanted for herself. I reminded her not to forget her vow to Master. He has been waiting for us to cultivate well and go home with him! Don’t let Master down.
She said tearfully, “You’re helping me, I feel it.” I said this was what I should do.
When I returned home, I looked inward about why this practitioner wanted to give up. And I found it! I had the thought of giving up on her. My thoughts really had a bad effect on her. So I corrected myself based on the Fa.
Now this woman is much better. She has learned to look inward when things happen. Previously, when I went to her home, it felt like a burden. Now I am happy to go to her place. What a difference!
Regarding Niu, she had not been serious about her Dafa practice. I told her that since she had the opportunity to learn the Fa, she should not have one foot in and one foot out. Now she studies the Fa with us.
The elderly practitioner’s second son and daughter-in-law previously didn’t believe in Dafa. But his mother’s experience changed their thinking. Her son then started listening to audio files of the Fa.
She asked, “How did my eldest son change so much? He was the one who used to make me worry.” I said, “You are a practitioner. When you are in line with the Fa, everything else will follow.” She smiled with joy!
Helping a fellow practitioner is helping oneself. During the process, I got rid of many attachments, like fear of trouble, wanting results, worry, impatience, and resentment. I continuously remind myself to look inward in every situation, to think of others, and to be considerate of their feelings. With righteous thoughts, I need to walk every step well, so Master can worry less.
I also profoundly realized that Master painstakingly arranged to bring the fellow practitioner to me to expand my capacity so I could cultivate compassion. I am grateful for the extended time that Master has given us to fulfill our missions. Thank you, Master!