(Minghui.org) I am a 74-year-old retired college professor. I firmly believe in Master and study the Fa diligently, send righteous thoughts, and have clarified the truth about Dafa for more than 20 years. However, I noticed that I often behave like an ordinary person if I don’t pay close attention to my cultivation.
I would like to share my experience of overcoming illness tribulations, removing attachments, and cultivating compassion.
One day during my afternoon nap, my stomach suddenly started to hurt. I tossed and turned and couldn’t sleep. I thought it was the result of eliminating karma, which is a good thing, and I should continue to do what I need to do without worrying too much about it. However, after I finished grocery shopping in the afternoon, I was in so much pain that I had to sit down and rest on the way home. Even worse, it started to rain. I thought, "Let me just get home first!" A miracle happened – the rain stopped. I then noticed that my pain also subsided. After I arrived home, it started to rain again.
While resting on the sofa at home, I thought that I should look within and correct myself first. I called for all beings in my dimensions, from the smallest to the largest, to recite repeatedly together: “Falun Dafa is good, Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance is good,” and to comply with the universal characteristic of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance. Then I sent forth strong righteous thoughts for a long time and sweated a lot. I knew that Master was cleansing my body.
Removing Fear and Sentimental Attachments
I continued to look within and think about my recent cultivation state and daily life to identify and eliminate attachments. I found my attachment to fear. I was arrested last May and released five hours later, given Master’s protection. My house was ransacked again later. Although these incidents happened last year, a shadow of fear still lingered in my mind and affected me from time to time.
Additionally, I found sentimental attachments to my loved ones, including my adorable young grandson. He has a predestined relationship with Dafa and often recites, “Falun Dafa is good; Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance is good.” I cared for my little grandson very much and worried about his safety, daily life, academic performance, and so on. I realized that I often fell into the affectionate behavior of an ordinary person. I also found other attachments, such as caring about reputation, enjoying compliments, seeking comfort, and feeling sentimentality for relatives, friends, and fellow practitioners.
Although I could not focus very well due to the pain, I kept memorizing Master’s teaching about resolving karmic debts properly. I spent as much time as possible studying and memorizing the Fa. The situation got even harder at night, so I could not sleep or sit still. I tried to do the exercises, but could only complete the first exercise.
I firmly denied all the arrangements of the old forces and said: “In my more than 20 years of cultivation, I have never taken a single pill. I have been through several tests and even been close to death, but I never had the slightest idea of going to the hospital. It is pointless to hurt me again, so let’s end this as soon as possible! Whoever makes me suffer again will get all the pain back.”
Then I made a statement: “Void any contract that I signed in any lifetime, except for the contract with Master.” At the most difficult time, I asked for Master to save me: “I am a disciple of Master Li Hongzhi, who would dare to harm me? Disintegrate the persecution!” Meanwhile, I was constantly looking inward. The pain lessened or increased at times. I felt the pain until midnight. It felt like a big inflated balloon in my chest that was about to explode.
Then I recalled many of my deceased relatives given the influence of sentiment. I am a very sentimental person. In addition to spending a lot of time studying the Fa, sending forth righteous thoughts, and clarifying the facts about Dafa, I tend to think about my deceased relatives when I had free time. Some of the different things I recalled included how my grandpa was killed by bandits, how good and capable my parents were, the life of my deceased brother and sister, and so on. I felt that I owed a lot of people and didn’t have time to repay them before they passed away. I recalled heavy feelings about my wonderful mother-in-law, my brother-in-law, and my sister-in-law, who died young. Suddenly, I realized how much sentimentality I had for my deceased relatives! Wasn’t this a big gap in my cultivation? I wanted to get rid of all these attachments.
While I looked within until one o’clock in the morning, dazed and exhausted, the word “compassion” suddenly came to mind, which must have been a hint from Master. Before I knew it, I fell asleep and slept until 8:00 a.m. I woke up feeling comfortably rested and without any pain. After breakfast, I hurried to the computer to find Master’s specific lectures on compassion. According to my understanding, compassion is the state of Gods and Buddhas, and there is Master’s compassion for the universe, the earth, us, and all beings.
What compassion should I have? Master taught us long ago:
“Being compassionate means casting aside all past history and grievances had with ordinary people, and it means not getting attached to anything associated with ordinary people, not seeking the fame or gain of ordinary people, and letting go of human attachments. It means taking everything associated with ordinary people lightly as you go about cultivating, and that is how you will be able to free yourself of it.” (First Fa Teaching Given in the United States)
“We should treat everyone well, which of course includes parents and children, and think of others first at all times. Your heart will not be selfish, then, but will be loving, kind, and compassionate. Common people, by contrast, tend to just be motivated by feelings and emotions.” (The Six Talk, Zhuan Falun)
Even though I had removed some attachments, I only removed a layer of them, as if I only peeled off a layer of onion. I must constantly pay attention to eliminating stubborn sentimentality.
Removing the Attachment of Jealousy
However, the problem was not over yet, as the pain returned very intensely the next night. I thought I must have a big attachment that I hadn’t yet discovered. I suddenly remembered a dream I had some time ago: I went to take the postgraduate entrance exam with two fellow practitioners. The results were that they passed the exam, but I did not. In the dream, I was very disappointed and puzzled and thought, “I am superior to them in every aspect, but how did they pass the exam?” Then I quickly woke up and realized it was a hint from Master. Thus, I looked inward right away: “Wasn’t it most obviously a hint of jealousy?” I thought my jealousy problem was not too serious then. However, despite the fact that I always paid attention to jealousy, I didn’t understand the attachment deeply enough. I thought I should have a clear understanding of such an important issue.
I began to think about the root cause of jealousy in the context of self. As a university professor, I often received praise for being a talented woman. At home, I am in charge of many things in my family. The fellow practitioners around me have always asked for my opinion on difficult problems. A fellow practitioner, who was arrested and returned a few days later, told me, “I said what you told me to say.” Another practitioner said, “Thanks to you, things turned out very well.” I felt very good about this and thought I did well for Dafa. Over time, I gradually believed that I was capable and that I cultivated better than others. Thus, I developed attachments to looking down on some practitioners and imposing my viewpoints on others unconsciously.
Now, I finally realized that I had a serious issue when it came to jealousy, I told myself that these attachments are not my true self, and I don’t want them. When I returned to my senses, I found that my stomach didn’t hurt anymore. It was back to normal. Thank you, Master, for your compassion and protection.
In the following days, I have been paying attention to cultivating compassion. In the past, when I practiced the exercises, sent forth righteous thoughts, or was unable to calm down from any wild thoughts, I would think: “These are not me, I don’t want them.” Now I add the focus of compassion: “These are not me, I am not attached to anything of ordinary people. I want to cultivate compassion. The true self is pure, selfless, and compassionate.” I find that my mind is much calmer. I feel that all ordinary people’s things are meaningless, so I don’t want to think about them anymore. I emerge out of the ordinary into the energy of great compassion, and my righteous thoughts are more powerful and cover a wider area.
This experience sharing was based on my current cultivation level. I share it with my fellow practitioners to remind us all to remove all attachments and human desires, improve xinxing, elevate out of the human state, and cultivate a heart of great compassion.
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