(Minghui.org) I am 85 years old, and I started practicing Falun Dafa in 1995. Due to my poor enlightenment, I didn’t pay attention to looking inward and had many attachments that interfered with my progress. I would like to share my experience so others can learn from it.
Why Did Others Not Like to Study With Me?
Jia once asked to come to my house to study the Fa together. She then stopped coming for a while. I found out she had set up a Fa-study group with three practitioners in her own home. When I told her that I wanted to join, she pointed out, “You always lean to one side.” I said this had been an issue for a long time and was hard to change. She replied, “Do you think that just anyone can come to my Fa-study group?” I realized I was not welcome and haven’t studied the Fa with her since.
Another Fa-study group was hosted by Zhang. I went there to share experiences and discuss my issue with them. Because I didn’t fully understand the discussion, I went there again the next day. Zhang told me, “We have enough people in our group and cannot accept more.” I replied, “I came to gain understanding on this. I won’t come again once I get some clarification.” Right after she mentioned they had enough people, she murmured, “Xiao hasn’t come for quite some time. I’d better visit her.” I didn’t say anything but realized I was not welcome. So I didn’t go to Zhang’s group anymore.
There was another Fa-study site very close to my home, and I began to go there. One day, the host, Bing, said, “We have a lot of people studying the Fa in this group. The stairs here are a bit steep, and there is no indoor toilet. You are old, and it is inconvenient for you. Please find another place to study.” I was kicked out again!
When these things happened, I didn’t worry about it. I thought, “I can study the Fa anywhere; I do not mind going someplace else.” After these three rejections, however, I was a little upset: Why was no one welcoming me? Was I too old? Was there another reason? I didn’t feel that there was anything wrong with me. I also thought that, since I was a senior Dafa practitioner, I should not care about who was right and who was wrong but should just cultivate myself.
Changing My Perspective
I was studying the Fa at home and read this quote from Master:
“Facing conflicts, no matter who is to blame, you have to look inside yourself first.” (Fa Teaching at the 2019 New York Fa Conference)
When I read this part, I followed Master’s request to look inward. It was really startling! I found that I had so many attachments, some conscious and some unconscious.
I graduated from a technical secondary school in the 1950s. Most of the practitioners who studied the Fa with me had not gone to secondary school, so when we studied together, I had to tell them how to pronounce some of the words. Sometimes, I had to tell them how to interpret the meaning of some sentences, and I even corrected them on how to read based on specific punctuation marks.
For example, if a sentence had a period but was read as a question, it would change the meaning. So after a while, I felt superior and spoke out aggressively. I became self-centered and liked to show off. I was jealous and competitive and easily got carried away. I had a tendency to look down on others and prove myself. I also liked to hear compliments. I thought that, since we were all fellow practitioners, not outsiders, I didn’t need to cultivate my speech and said whatever I wanted. Having all these attachments, how could I not have a negative impact on other practitioners?
Of course, I also realized their reasons were not the real reasons why they didn’t welcome me. So I continued to look inward. Only then did I understand that these practitioners were not unfriendly. They all stood by the Fa’s principles to help me improve. Jia pointed out that I didn’t sit up straight. Wasn’t that Master using her to give me a wake-up call? Not only did I fail to correct it, I also said, as if it didn’t matter, “It has been many years, but I can’t get it right.” As a result, not only did I not correct myself, but my hunchback got worse, which had a negative impact on Dafa. Many fellow practitioners have mentioned that they should sit up straight in the lotus position when studying the Fa. If someone was as lax as I was, not only was it disrespectful of Master and the Fa, but could the true meaning of the Fa be revealed?
Zhang lived in a high-rise. When many practitioners go there, it can easily attract attention and cause concern for the neighbors and management. With so many people coming every day, wasn’t this a security risk? So Zhang didn’t want too many people going to her place. Because my cultivation state was not solid, I thought the practitioners disliked me because I was too old. The gap between me and my fellow practitioners was great. Some of the participants did not come to study on a regular basis, so Zhang tried to contact them out of concern. She was helping others to be diligent and improve together. However, I was stuck in jealousy. Ugh!
Bing is a warm-hearted person. The stairs in her house are steep and narrow. Young people struggle to get up and down them, let alone an old lady in her 80s. The restroom is outside and difficult to get to at night. So Bing had good intentions when she asked me to find a more suitable place to study the Fa. It was out of concern for me. Not only did I not thank her, but I also misunderstood her. I was really ashamed.
These fellow practitioners let go of their human hearts, stood by the Fa, and tried to help me improve. But I did not realize this for a long time. I sincerely apologize to them.
By looking inward, I dug out all of my past notions and selfishness that did not comply with the Fa. I learned to think from the perspective of the other person. I should focus on others’ merits as well as my own shortcomings. Every thought and deed should make me look inward according to the Fa so I can disintegrate any negative thinking:
“… so as to attain the righteous Enlightenment of selflessness and altruism.” (“Non-Omission in Buddha-Nature,” Essentials for Further Advancement)
I also should do the three things well and become a qualified Dafa disciple to return home with Master.
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