Handling Seemingly Trivial Family Matters With a Cultivator's Mindset
(Clearwisdom.net) The family is a cultivation environment that we all experience throughout our cultivation. Many practitioners have realized that there is little room for deviation on the path of cultivation, and we must always handle ourselves as cultivators, no matter what we encounter.
Some practitioners mentioned that when they did the three things or dealt with day-to-day affairs, they could follow Dafa's principle. However, when they were at home or when they interacted with their family members, their human attachments and human notions would surface. They tended to look at things with ordinary people's thinking, the way ordinary people talk or deal with things, not based on the Fa. These were tests, but they didn't handle themselves as cultivators. Instead, they missed the chance to improve and let go of attachments.
The family is the predominant cultivation environment. Every day one interacts with his family members in a wide range of circumstances. Because Dafa disciples are to cultivate to very high levels, every thought of ours must be based on the Fa. How can we accomplish this? The family members with whom we have the most contact with will help us to eliminate karma and improve ourselves. Therefore, we should constantly maintain a good mentality and let the principle of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance guide our lives and cultivation.
One practitioner recently encountered two things at home that gave him a lot of inspiration. First, the well in his old courtyard needed to be repaired. He wanted to ask one of his neighbors to repair it but his wife repeatedly stated, "Surely, he cannot fix it." Initially, he didn't take it seriously. But after his wife repeated it several times, he became so fed up, just as in Zhuan Falun:
"if it doesn't provoke you, it doesn't count, it doesn't work, and you won't be able to improve from it."
He replied, "How do you know?" "Because last time he did not fix it right," his wife answered. He was a little angry and said, "You are unreasonable. What will you do if he repairs it well?" Then his wife was really angry and she shot back, "I would fall over dead if he fixed it right!" They did not speak to each other for days. It was not until he calmed down that he became aware of his mistake. "If my wife wanted to talk in that way, why didn't I let her? Why did I have to try to get the upper hand? In fact, it was the competitive attachment. My wife was helping me to eliminate it, but instead I fought with her."
The second encounter took place when his daughter-in-law came back home from her mother's home with her two-month-old son. At that time, his wife had a cold and his daughter-in-law needed to cook some Chinese herbs to treat pain in her hand and feet. The practitioner and his son were left to do the chores. His son divided the tasks between them. The practitioner was to take care of the baby while the son was at work. He would do the shopping and cooking, and help to look after the baby. Meanwhile his son would cook the medicine for his wife and take care of the baby at night, as the baby was not sleeping well at night. At about 6 o'clock the next morning, his son opened the door and yelled at him, "Get up and cook the medicine!" He didn't say anything but a voice in his mind said, "Why do you talk to me this way? Besides, we divided up the tasks between us. Why aren't you doing it?" But he didn't say anything. After he sent forth righteous thoughts, the practitioner went to boil the herbs. Later he learned that the baby didn't sleep most of the night, so his son and daughter-in-law had very little sleep. After finding out about that, he thought that he should indeed help boil the herbs. But he still could not accept the way that his son talked to him. It troubled him for the entire morning. At last, he understood after he checked himself with the Fa, "You are a Dafa disciple, right? All things that a practitioner encounters are for him to cultivate. My son helped me to let go of this attachment. Hasn't he helped me to eliminate this karma? Isn't that a good thing?"
These two things were not great events, but both of them were for him to cultivate himself and let go of attachments. Every minor thing happening at home may be a test, and its aim may be at eliminating karma or getting rid of some attachments or notions. The practitioner realized that we are at the last stage of the Fa-rectification period and we should behave according to what Teacher tells us in Zhuan Falun:
"while we're cultivating, come to understand that we're cultivators when we run into difficulty; with whether we can understand and accept the Law that the master teaches, or the Dao that a Daoist master teaches; and with whether we can, in the process of cultivating, do things in line with that Law."
If we can always conduct ourselves as Dafa practitioners, regardless of the difficulties, tests and tribulations we face, we can do well and cultivate diligently until Consummation.