My Understanding of Various Causes of Long-Term Sickness Karma (Part 2 of 5)
(Minghui.org) Continued from Part 1
7. Failing to Keep One's Promise
I met a fellow practitioner who was paralyzed, and many fellow cultivators sent forth righteous thoughts to help him. However, there was no improvement for quite a while.
I talked with him often, and found out that he had made a careless promise many years ago that he failed to keep. He explained that it was a promise he never should have made in the first place, but I reminded him that as a cultivator, he should always keep his word. He realized his mistake, and he and his son resolved the decades-old issue. He later recovered from his paralysis.
Master said in Zhuan Falun:
“I am a person who will not say what he does not want to say, but what I say must be true.”
The above principle holds true everywhere. Moreover, it does not apply only to everyday people, but also to practitioners. But some fellow cultivators make wild statements, or even lie in order to achieve their aims. Sometimes, when they cannot uphold the casual promise they made, they either deny ever making the promise, or try to find scapegoats.
Master taught in “Sifting of the Sand” from The Essentials of Diligent Progress, Vol. III:
“For the cosmos’s law is this: whatever a being does, he must be held accountable for it.”
Our words and deeds produce substances. If we make a mistake, it is fine that we correct it. We should, however, not use this as an excuse to change our promises and try to get off the hook. Also, some fellow cultivators do not take their promises seriously, and they change their minds at will. They forget that they are accountable for what they say to others.
It seems that the sickness karma of some practitioners originated for this reason. In the case above, the fellow practitioner's paralysis was due to not fulfilling a promise made many years prior.
8. Slacking Off in Cultivation
“Rather, to quietly cultivate in bleak loneliness, unable to see hope, is the hardest of all. Doing any form of cultivation entails undergoing a trial such as this and a path with such features. Only if one can persevere and continually forge ahead does it amount to true diligence. It's easy to talk about, but putting it into action is tremendously difficult. That is why it's said that always cultivating as if you were just starting will surely result in achieving your ultimate rank.” (“Fa Teaching at the 2009 Greater New York International Fa Conference”)
After one cultivates for a while, one may start to slack off. Some may not do the exercise for long periods of time, and some may do the sitting meditation only sporadically. If so, their main body may not be purified and transformed enough, so when the sickness karma attacks, it can go on for a long time.
Some practitioners are rather lazy, which affects them in every aspect of their lives. This is especially prominent in their xinxing and their behavior, and gives the old forces the excuse they need to intensify the sickness karma.
One out-of-town practitioner developed some severe sickness karma, and she was bed-ridden. Many practitioners came to support her, but her condition did not improve. Others commented that she had cultivated for over 20 years, and was very diligent. Moreover, in order to have more time for doing the three things, she even gave up a lucrative job.
I once paid her a long visit. I discovered that she had slacked off so much that she appeared to be an ordinary person. Indeed, many of her primary activities included those of ordinary people. She played online games, watched movies and TV, and neglected Fa study and exercise. She appeared quite active among fellow practitioners, as if she were very diligent. However, whenever a conflict surfaced, she did not search within, and she developed some resentment toward others. When she participated in Dafa-related activities, it seemed that she was just going through the motions instead of using her pure heart to save people.
Her initial diligence was gone, the improvement gained by letting go of self was no more, she had ceased looking inward to resolve conflicts, and the joy of gaining a deeper understanding of the Fa had disappeared. She had turned the other way and begun her pursuit of the so-called pleasures of the ordinary world.
Since she still clung to Dafa, I asked her why she chose to play online games for half the night instead of focusing on cultivation. At first, she tried to deny it, but she finally came around. I told her it was not too late to start anew, to treat herself as if she were a newcomer. She could begin Fa-study and exercise from the start, and little by little she would overcome her sickness karma. She could re-focus on Fa study and again start searching within. I reminded her that whether she can make it or not was up to her.
9. Lacking a Rational Understanding of the Fa
Master told us in “Expounding on the Fa” from Essentials for Further Advancement:
“Having humanly fostered the evil demons, you allow them to capitalize on the loopholes in the Fa. When a tribulation arrives, if you, a disciple, can truly maintain an unshakable calm or be determined to meet different requirements at different levels, this should be sufficient for you to pass the test. If it continues endlessly and if there do not exist other problems in your xinxing or conduct, it must be that the evil demons are capitalizing on the weak spots caused by your lack of control. After all, a cultivator is not an ordinary human. So why doesn’t the side of you that is your original nature rectify the Fa?”
A certain practitioner had a short temper. After learning Falun Gong they learned how to control themselves in front of ordinary people, but once a conflict surfaced among fellow cultivators or family members, they would forget to cultivate. They would instead shift blame and begin to resent others, thereby reinforcing their demon nature, time after time.
One has to cultivate away demon nature little by little in order to eliminate it completely. If one's demon nature maintains the upper hand, it will grow stronger and stronger, and in the end, the person may come to believe this “nature” is his or her natural, in-born temperament. This demon nature may then come to completely control them. The practitioner may then explode at the slightest of conflicts.
Master taught us in “Buddha Nature” Zhuan Falun, Vol. II:
“This means that an ordinary person who inhabits this world cannot find himself. And such a notion controls a person for not just one lifetime, but continually onward. Only when a change takes place will it be eliminated. Failing that, it will continue to exert control. When the notion gets progressively stronger, the person’s real self will truly cease to exist.”
Some practitioners complain that their poor health is the result of unresolved resentment held toward other people. They fail to realize that their resentment, as well as many other emotions, are the source of their sickness karma. If each time one can elevate and improve from within amid interpersonal conflict, the sickness karma will be dissolved little by little. If they fail to do so, their demon nature will only be reinforced over time, and it will create symptoms of illness, just as it does for everyday people.
10. Owing Hard-to-Resolve Debts from Previous Lives
Some practitioners owe debts to others from previous lives. However, Master can help resolve the debt—no matter what it is.
“When disciples have ample righteous thoughtsMaster has the power to turn back the tide”(“The Master-Disciple Bond,” from Hong Yin Vol. II)
But it seems that this realm may require that a practitioner cultivate the kind of compassion that can move the being to whom he owes the debt. However much he can touch his former victim, that is how much Master can help resolve the problem.
In other words, if one fails to cultivate diligently, he cannot count on Master to take care of everything. As a result, one may then develop sickness karma.
(To be continued)