Continuously Letting Go of Self While Assimilating to the Fa
(Clearwisdom.net) Revered Teacher and fellow practitioners:
We thank our fellow practitioners for providing us this experience sharing opportunity, despite their busy schedules. I realize that there is still a very big gap in my cultivation when I compare myself to Teacher's requirements. Thus, I'm hesitant to write this report. But, Teacher said,
"A Dafa disciple should put the Fa first in everything he does--whenever you evaluate something you have to consider the Fa first."
"The reason is, your surface, which is still assimilating to the Fa, needs to be constantly improved, and as you constantly improve, the things that you need to cultivate away have to be arranged for. Every realm has its own state of being. If you remain stagnant, you definitely won't be able to keep up with the Fa-rectification." ("Teaching the Fa at the 2002 Fa Conference in Boston")
I came to understand that during the Fa rectification and given Teacher's arrangement, each Dafa practitioner must harmonize him/herself with its requirements. Therefore, I will discuss below some of my experiences and understandings about my practice.
At the beginning of the persecution, because I did not understand the Fa from within the Fa, I wrote the guarantee statement against my will. However, merciful Teacher has not given up on me and had a fellow practitioner (my father) send me (Teacher's) articles. He also discussed and shared experiences with me. Since I had only practiced the Fa for a short time, I had a strong attachment to fear. Although I knew that Dafa was good, I dared not go to Tiananmen Square to clarify the truth. But I knew I should safeguard Dafa, so I decided to make truth-clarifying materials (for Dafa).
When the evil factors were rampant, I felt that I was not strong and good enough. Yes, I understood what Teacher meant regarding holistically improving and sublimating. But, almost all of the students in our village had stopped learning (Falun Dafa), and we had no contact with each other. I thought, "How good would it be if we could get together to study the Fa. In such an atmosphere, no one would stop practicing Falun Gong. However, I had only been at the exercise site twice and knew only three individuals. Would they listen to me? This warped imagination wore down my righteous thoughts. Therefore, I did not have the courage to follow through on my thoughts.
Teacher can see clearly each person's thoughts. He pointed out my attachment,
"Human beings are just human beings. At critical moments it is hard for them to let go of their human notions, but they always try to find excuses to convince themselves. A magnificent cultivator, on the other hand, is able to let go of his Self and even all of his ordinary human thoughts amidst crucial trials." ("Position" from Essentials for Further Advancement II)
I understood that the universe is being rectified, that each life is positioning itself, and each student has been given certain responsibilities. We have to assist Teacher's Fa rectification and save sentient beings. Dafa has created living beings at different levels. All things arranged by the old forces resulted in huge disturbances and tribulations for Teacher during his effort to save the entire firmament. Without Teacher and Dafa, I would not exist. Now, someone as insignificant as me was able to come across Dafa and I have been saved. How could I not let go of my selfishness, disregard all living beings' safety, and be self-centered? This was my fundamental attachment.
"...Fa-rectification disciples who aren't able to come through the Fa-rectification period will not have another chance to cultivate..." ("Fa-Rectification Period Dafa Practitioners" from Essentials for Further Advancement II)
If it was my fault that many practitioners were not active during the Fa-rectification, and I would not meet Teacher's expectations, my sins would be huge. We are in the human world with our Honored Teacher to guard the great and dignified Buddha Law. Teacher has placed me at that high a position. How could the evil overpower me? My heart became light immediately, and I was no longer afraid. My heart was filled with righteousness. I must accept my responsibility, although I was not an assistant. I decided to visit each practitioner in our village.
At first I met up with two practitioners. I gave them Teacher's scriptures. They told me that although they no longer did the exercises and studied the Fa they would not renounce Dafa. Alas, they did not know what was happening elsewhere. "How great it would have been if you had come earlier. We would have not wasted an entire year." I was encouraged and decided to create an environment for group Fa study. At that time, the first Fa study group was established with the three of us. After that, I began to visit some of the elderly practitioners.
Because the home environments are not alike, practitioners' mentalities are different. Some told me that they had given up the practice. Some told me that being a good person at home was good enough, and that they were not willing to implicate their children. Some returned Teacher's scriptures after reading them, and they became suspicious of Teacher. I continued to visit them over the next two years. I visited them, although they were reluctant to meet with me. Some feared that if I would give them material. Therefore, whenever they saw me they pretended not to see me. Noticing their behavior, I felt that something was not right. I wondered whether I was too attached to helping them. I was very busy and visiting them took a lot of effort. I was mad and agonized.
"When a cultivator's mind departs from the Fa, the evil will find its way in." ("Fa-Lecture at the Conference in Florida, U.S.A.")
I had not looked within. My attachment gave the evil the opportunity to strengthen my attachment. I became too attached to self again. I used ordinary people's mentality to analyze the problems I encountered when verifying the Fa. The more I was attached to the results, the more irritable I became. When I could not meet my expectations, I worried. I felt insecure when people did not understand me, and I neglected Fa study. I wanted everyone to understand everything I had enlightened to. I did not consider if they were able to understand it. With the attachment to fame, I easily became angry. I was disappointed and lost my compassion. Teacher's Fa opened my heart,
"I think that you absolutely shouldn't be discouraged or apathetic. Do this compassionately no matter who it is, and with a compassion that can melt steel you'll be able to do it well." ("Explaining the Fa During the 2003 Lantern Festival at the U.S. West Fa Conference")
After that, I became more diligent in cultivating my xinxing and worked on myself constantly. At the same time, I told other practitioners how I understood the difference between personal cultivation and Fa rectification cultivation. I told them about the supernormal power of Dafa and gave examples of how fellow practitioners eliminated the evil with righteous thoughts. I also sent forth righteous thoughts frequently to eliminate all evil that interfered with their cultivation. It did not take long for practitioners to participate in group study, one after the other. They became more rational and clear-headed and held stronger righteous thoughts. Some new practitioners came to learn Falun Dafa after we clarified the truth to them. The new practitioners did the three things diligently. Every practitioner tried hard to eliminate attachments. We created a group Fa-study environment. Although we experienced interference over the years, we have persisted in our group study and negated the arrangements of the old forces. I realized that I would not go wrong, as long as I followed Teacher's arrangements.
During my cultivation, I felt that all my courage, wisdom, and capabilities are infused with Teacher's immense compassion and sufferings. I can do the three things well only when cultivating diligently. We are doing everything not for Teacher. Instead, we are doing what we should do.
When I began to clarify the truth, I did not have a source for truth-clarifying materials. I therefore made my own with a brush. Although I had never practiced writing with a brush, I could write nice characters, filled with righteousness, after I asked Teacher to help me. Because my child was only three years old at the time, I brought him/her with me when I clarified the truth during the day. When I went outside (to make or distribute materials) at night, I left the child at home and let him/her sleep. The child was still asleep after I returned.
During the summer of 2002, I clarified the truth during my lunch break. Since it was easier to clarify the truth in our village, I felt that the elderly practitioners could do it. I traveled to another village. While I was posting a flier, I noticed a middle-aged man staring at me viciously. I send forth righteous thoughts toward him and kept posting the flier. The man said, "You are still posting! What is it?" With no fear, I smiled and said, "Hello, I am a Falun Gong practitioner, and I am posting a flier that talks about the goodness of Falun Dafa and that it is spreading throughout the world. Come and sit down here." I realized that I could not leave. I decided to clarify the truth to him.
As soon as he heard that I was a practitioner, the man said, "You sit down too and don't leave." I smiled and said, "I am not running away, and I did not commit any wrongdoing. Practitioners are all good people. I won't kill anyone -- the "self immolation" incident was staged. How could so many people learn it in over 50 countries if Falun Gong is not good? Because we speak words of truth, some bad people became jealous and persecute us." I also told him how my father was persecuted.
As he listened, he's attitude became friendlier and he even asked questions. He said, "Why does the government suppresse Falun Gong if it is good? Why has your Teacher gone abroad? Who told you to post the fliers here?" I told him while sending forth righteous thoughts, "There are many good people in history who were persecuted. There is good and evil in this world. My Teacher has lived overseas since 1997 (two years before the persecution started) and spread Falun Dafa throughout the world. Because of practicing Falun Dafa, my health improved and my family's life is harmonious. Now that some people slander my Teacher, I have to let people know the truth. Falun Dafa is indeed good. Teacher asks us to be good people. Furthermore, Falun Dafa is Buddha law, and those doing bad things against the Buddha law will be punished by Heaven. You are a good person. By doing good deeds, you will be rewarded. Hearing the truth about Falun Dafa today will bring you bliss. Tell what you heard to people you know and let's hope they will wake up to the truth as well. Tell your family members not to listen to those rumors and lies. The heavenly principles are most fair -- while blessing good people, they also punish bad people. Many people who persecuted and reported practitioners to the police have received retributions. I am not trying to scare you. I am saying all these for your own good."
I talked to him for an hour and he truly understood the truth. He also laughed and enjoyed the conversation. In the end, he said, "You are lucky today to meet me. Don't post any more -- leave now so avoid running into more people. People are patrolling this area now." I said, "Thank you, as a good person, you will receive good rewards." I was happy that another life was saved. Finishing up with my posting, I went home safely.
" We have said that good or evil comes from a person's spontaneous thought, and the thought at that moment can bring about different consequences." (Zhuan Falun)
I understood that Teacher would help me if I had righteous thoughts when clarifying the truth. After that, I used every opportunity to validate Dafa, because I knew that this was my true purpose for coming to this world. I want to try my best to bring the goodness of Dafa and Teacher's compassion to sentient beings.
The Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party heralded in a new stage in the Fa rectification and practitioners' cultivation. I think through our continuous effort to eliminate our various notions, remain clear-headed despite the delusions, and send forth righteous thoughts to eliminate the evil spirit of the communist party, we can save more sentient beings.
I think sending forth righteous thoughts is crucial in clarifying the truth. When the evil in other dimensions that controls people is eliminated, the knowing side of people senses that you are doing everything for his or her own good. Then it is easier to save them. How to maintain righteous thoughts? Only through studying the Fa diligently and living by the standard of the Fa can we eliminate attachments and desires formed in ordinary society. We will then be able to send strong righteous thoughts, eliminate the evil, purify the cosmos and correct all deviations. This is truly "sending forth righteous thoughts." We will also maintain righteous thoughts at all times.
I thought about practitioners going through countless tribulations, fulfilling their vows and helping Teacher in the Fa rectification. On the other side, some divine beings of the old cosmos held on to their selfishness -- they don't want to change their arrangements, which caused all the delusion in this human world. Their arrangements caused all kinds of interference to Teacher's Fa rectification, and their fundamental purpose was to annihilate sentient beings. These arrangements are not recognized by Teacher and practitioners. Practitioners' sending forth righteous thoughts and using their supernormal powers are following Teacher's wish and heaven's will, being responsible and compassionate toward sentient beings.
It was 3:40 a.m. when I finished writing this article. My previous draft was burned as a result of interference. All kinds of attachments interfered when writing this article. I calmed down and found many of my attachments. I decided to negate the old forces arrangements and eliminate them with my righteous thoughts. Thanks to Teacher's help, my mind became clearer and I was able to do what I should do.
I want to finish my sharing by quoting Teacher's words,
"So as a cultivator, what is truly remarkable is when you can be steadfast and have righteous thoughts so firm that nothing can sway you. Be solid and firm like diamond, or granite, and then nothing can affect you--evil will be afraid at the mere sight of you. If upon encountering trying circumstances your thinking can be truly righteous, then, when faced with the evil's persecution and when faced with interference, just one sentence of yours fortified with steadfast righteous thoughts can instantly make the evil disintegrate, and it will make those who are being used by the evil turn and flee, it will make the evil's persecution of you dissolve, and it will make the evil's interfering with you disappear without a trace. One thought born of righteous faith is all it takes. And whoever can hold firm that righteous thought and go the distance will become a magnificent god forged by Dafa." ("Teaching the Fa at the Western U.S. International Fa Conference")