I Now Understand What It Means to “Cultivate the Same Way as When I Started”
(Clearwisdom.net) I have not cultivated very well recently. Although I was doing the three things, I didn't seem to get much out of Fa study. It was like completing a job. When I sent righteous thoughts, I wasn't able to stay focused. My efforts to clarify the facts about Dafa were also ineffective. It seemed that I was blocked by something. I knew I was not doing well and was trying to look inward to find the cause. However, I didn't find it for quite some time.
I recently spoke to a colleague about withdrawing from the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). It seemed to me that he didn't understand what I was saying. He wanted to avoid the issue, and derided the subject. I was thinking that sentient beings were truly lost and beyond help. Furthermore, I was discouraged by the persecution stories on the Clearwisdom website, which made me think that both cultivation and saving sentient beings were too difficult to do.
When I woke up this morning, it occurred to me that this feeling of hopelessness, and all the negative emotions associated with it, was stopping me from doing well in cultivation. I wasn't using righteous thoughts to look at things. It was this negative feeling that hindered me, and this was why the power of Dafa could not manifest through me. I then realized that this negative reaction had established itself over a very long time, following the cosmic changes of formation, stasis, degeneration, and destruction. This is why I didn't notice the problem. It was caused by deviating from the Fa, and the result was a tendency to follow the crowd and be pushed around by outside events.
I now understand that negative reactions by sentient beings indicated that I was holding onto a negative frame of mind through a lack of understanding of the Fa. My own lack of righteous thoughts was the reason why people couldn't understand what I said. Indeed, the attitudes of everyday people are influenced by the state of mind of Dafa practitioners. Teacher said,
“Throughout history the Tao School has considered the human body a small universe: It believes that the exterior of the universe is as big as its interior, and that its exterior looks the same as its interior. ” (Zhuan Falun)
Hence, the problem I encountered was not caused by everyday people, but by me. Everyday people are being misled by outside events and are waiting to be saved. It is wrong for me to blame them instead of improving my own character.
In the past I had difficulty understanding what Teacher taught in “Eliminate Your Last Attachment(s),”
“If a cultivator can let go of the thought of life and death under any circumstance, evil is sure to be afraid of him. If every student is able to do this, evil will of itself no longer exist. All of you are already aware of the principle of mutual-generation and mutual-inhibition. If you are not afraid, the factor that would make you afraid will cease to exist. This is not to be self-imposed, but is achieved by truly and calmly letting go of it. ” (Essentials for Further Advancement II)
I now understand that I was too concerned about the outside events and other people's feelings. I was also giving too much weight to the evildoers. I was thus giving them power, and they pushed me around. In reality, outside events were not the cause. They only reflect the status of our own minds. Thus, by changing our state of mind, we change our outside environment. Teacher said,
“The cause of your illness has been removed, and what remains is only this bit of black qi that will come out on its own to let you suffer some and have some pain. It is forbidden for you not to suffer even a little bit.” (Zhuan Falun)
Teacher is in control of Fa-rectification. The old forces and evildoers are no more than the black qi. We should pay no attention to them.
I now understand an inner meaning of what Teacher said in,
Who are the Lords of Heaven?
Level after level of beings
have drifted from the Fa
Each of whom claimed to rule
the vault of Heaven
The time of return now draws near
Let us see who remains deluded
(Hong Yin Vol. II)
We deviated from the Fa in the past. That is why we need to cultivate now. By aligning ourselves with the Fa we can return home, and this is our historical mission. Also, I understand an inner meaning of the following words from Hong Yin III,
I close my eyes and doze off
to sever all troubles here
Upon waking, endless things come along
Neither heaven nor earth can
block my road of Fa-rectification
But disciples’ human hearts can
Our human notions are impeding the completion of Fa-rectification. Teacher is waiting for us to improve our character until all of us form one body. If this were not true, I believe the evildoers would have already been crushed.
I have awakened to the fact that while we all say “Assist Teacher in Fa-rectification,” I am not sure that I have done that. I also question whether I am completely unselfish in doing the three things. There is definitely a lot of room for improvement on my part. However, I have understood how to cultivate with the same frame of mind as when I first started. I must move forward to save sentient beings and to fulfill my historical mission.
The above is my understanding of a portion of the Fa. Please point out anything that is improper. Heshi.