(Minghui.org) Not long after I began practicing Falun Dafa, practitioners recommended that I take on the role of assistant.

One day, I organized practitioners to watch the video of Master’s lecture. While watching Master describing the “tooth extraction” story, some fellow practitioners laughed and made trite remarks.

I was a bit upset and said, “Master is teaching the Fa, but you are merely treating it as a story, and lacking seriousness! Isn’t Master teaching us the Fa principles? Master is telling us to fundamentally remove attachments, and that any hurdle can be passed. If we only do things superficially, using human methods, and do not fundamentally remove attachments, then nothing can really change.”

Upon hearing this, the practitioners quieted down and concentrated on watching the lecture. That day, another practitioner’s daughter began practicing Dafa.

Today, when I studied the Fa about “tooth extraction,” I suddenly gained a new layer of understanding. I realized that Master had explained the difference between Fa-rectification cultivation practice, and the so-called “cultivation practice” imposed by the old forces.

In my understanding, Fa-rectification cultivation practice that Master arranged for Dafa practitioners is extracting teeth by solving the problem at the root. As soon as the root of the problem is solved, all the problems on the surface are solved.

At that time, only a limited amount of action was required from us to complete the task, in order to conform to the principles of the human world. This way, the problem is solved fundamentally – from the inside out.

In addition, that person’s goal is not “tooth extraction;” his intention is to demonstrate the power of his “potion.” In other words, his goal is to let people recognize and accept his “potion.”

Looking Inside Solves Dafa Issues

The same is true with Dafa disciples’ Fa-rectification cultivation practice.

During the course of cultivation, when a problem arises, we look inside for the root cause of the problem, find it, and cleanse ourselves in the Fa. At this point, all the illusionary issues on the surface no longer exist. As long as we conduct ourselves with righteous thoughts and righteous actions, the problem will be solved, and the three tasks will be performed well.

This requires that everything that Dafa disciples do, not being for themselves, but for validating Dafa and saving sentient beings, and with no selfishness or “self” in the process.

In contrast, the so-called cultivation practice that the old forces imposed on Dafa practitioners is just like the Western doctors’ “pulling teeth.” The old forces use external coercion to persecute the physical body of Dafa practitioners by arranging demonic tribulations.

This method starts from the outside and targets the attachments on the inside. The old forces’ goal is to position practitioners’ so-called cultivation and self-improvement before validating Dafa. Their method does not solve practitioners’ fundamental problems, and it has selfishness and “self” written all over it.

Resolving Issue in Prison

Years ago, a practitioner told me her experience in the evil den at the beginning of the persecution, and it touched me greatly.

She wanted to do the exercises in the cell one day. The head inmate said, “You are not allowed to practice, or I will report you!” The practitioner did not insist. She sat down and looked inside, “What attachment do I have that made the head inmate forbid me from doing the exercises, and caused her to commit a crime against Dafa?”

She found her problem - she had been looking down on the head inmate. She immediately corrected herself. Almost instantly, the head inmate made a big change in attitude, and said, “You can practice right here. No one will dare to report you!”

The head inmate watched her practicing very attentively, and exclaimed, “I never noticed how beautiful you are! This gong is really good!”

In this example, the fellow practitioner looked inside not for her self-improvement or breaking through some tribulations, but for saving sentient beings and validating Dafa. When she found her shortcoming, all the imposed persecution was instantly disintegrated. She validated Dafa, and saved sentient beings at the same time.

If we had realized this all along, how would there be any persecution? We would have been validating Dafa and saved sentient beings. Practitioners are perfected through validating Dafa and saving sentient beings.

Stop Wandering in the Old Fa Principles

I found that some practitioners look inside centering around their “self” improvement, removing tribulations, or solving some problems, without prioritizing validating Dafa, and saving sentient beings. In fact, if we do not remove “selfishness” and “self,” we would be wandering in the old Fa principles, run in circles in everything arranged by the old forces, and won’t be able to advance in cultivation.

Of course, cultivation is like peeling an onion, in which human attachments are removed layer by layer. Therefore, looking inside for self-improvement that we did in the past, you couldn’t really say it was wrong, because Fa’s standard for us at the time was that.

However, I realized that the process of Fa-rectification today has advanced to the last and most fundamental part of the old cosmos, and the time has come for Dafa disciples to remove the last layer of the shell, which is made up of “selfishness” and “self.”

I recalled a past experience as I was writing this. About ten years ago, as I was riding a long-distance bus home, I looked out the window and saw how peaceful the fields, the earth, and the sky were. At that moment, my mind became tranquil and Master’s poem occurred to me:

Master said,

“...Heaven and earth were created by the Fa (Way)...”(“A Chance In The Twinkling of An Eye,” Hong Yin III)

At that moment, I understood more of the Fa principles. I thought, “Since everything in heaven and earth were created and perfected by the Fa, what is the point of me clinging to my thoughts, my understandings, and what I want? I wish to let go of everything, and let the Fa smelt everything of mine!”

At that moment, I felt a tsunami of powerful energy gushing out of the deepest part of my lower abdominal area! I could not express my feelings from that moment, I just wanted to cry out loud, as my face was already covered with tears.

At that moment, I saw my true self running like a seven or eight-year-old boy, wrapped in a thin, black, transparent film. I felt that I had been covered in dust for a long time, and was about to be freed from it!

Getting off the bus, I found that the entire world had changed, and I could feel Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance in all matters. I knew that film was made of “selfishness” and “self.”

If we are still looking inside for the purpose of self-improvement, we will not be able to advance at all because such thoughts are generated by the last layer of the shell that wraps up our true self, it is from “selfishness” and “self,” not from our original true nature.

Main Obstacle

Our true self is a particle of Dafa, a life dedicated to validating Dafa and saving sentient beings, a life that conforms to Master’s will and does not have any selfish cognition. Selfish cognition is from the shell of “selfishness” and “self” practicing so-called cultivation. The shell is blocking our true self from cultivating.

It is this last shell that prevents us from meeting Dafa’s requirements and standards and it is this last of the old cosmos that restrains us and prevents us from advancing in cultivation, truly breaking away from the old cosmos, and meeting the true standards of a Dafa practitioner.

I believe the shell of “selfishness” and “self” has become the main obstacle for practitioners to cultivate. We must break through it, so we reach the consummation that conforms to the will of Master and the new cosmos.

Editor’s note: This article represents the author’s personal understanding at present to share with fellow practitioners. Practitioners should “Compare with one another in study, in cultivation.” (“Solid Cultivation,” Hong Yin)

Chinese version available

Category: Improving Oneself