(Minghui.org) Master’s recent publications and the Minghui Editorials have increased our awareness of the seriousness of cultivation. The issues of flattery and demonic interference from one’s own mind initiated discussions among practitioners. I’d like to share my experiences on this issue.

In 2014, I and more than 30 coworkers were transferred to teach at another school. Every year, this school holds a “high-performance demonstration class.” A teacher from each subject gives a demonstration class that day. As a newcomer, I was asked to participate.

I did not prepare anything for the activity, or teach a class I was good at. I taught the usual content and the related syllabus. However, my class received a lot of attention. Many teachers praised me, saying that my presentation was well done, and I spoke eloquently. They compared my class to other teachers’ and said mine was especially good. From then on, the staff and teachers complimented me.

I never believed that my class was outstanding or that I was brilliant. However, as time passed, the compliments and flattery made me feel I was the best. That day became the “highlight” of my life. I used to think I was young and still had a lot to learn, but after that day I did not make much progress.

The incident showed me how compliments substantially changed my mentality and how dangerous they can be. When a person feels he’s better than others, he’s less likely to improve. He’s no longer humble, mindful of others, or respectful. Compliments can easily give a person an inflated sense of self, make one arrogant, and cause one to look down on others. They cannot accept it if someone seems better than them and they may become jealous.

The situation is even worse when practitioners compliment each other. The practitioners who are usually complimented are good at clarifying the truth, behave righteously when facing persecution, or were not arrested when the police seized others. But, if more and more practitioners compliment them, they may gradually develop attachments and start to feel they are better than others. This is the beginning of demonic interference from one’s own mind.When talking about demonic interference from one’s own mind, Master said in Lecture Six, Zhuan Falun, “It is very difficult for one’s mind to stay undisturbed.It’s a gradual process as the flattered practitioner will only see where he did well, believe that he did well in all aspects, and then stop seeing his shortcomings and attachments. When others point out his attachments, he cannot see it or may try to hide them to safeguard his reputation and image. He may do this unintentionally because he’s become complacent.When the old forces exploit his gaps and persecute him, he might not remember Master and the Fa. The demonic interference from his mind suppresses his righteous thoughts, so he cannot negate the persecution. Master gives us time and opportunities to get back on track. However, when the practitioner suffers prolonged persecution, he can easily develop a grudge and wonder why he is suffering. After all, he feels he’s done so much for Dafa and saved many people. This gives the old forces even more reasons to persecute him. Some people eventually pass away. These are some of the consequences of being flattered by others.

We all should have learned from this painful lesson by now. I noticed some practitioners believe they cultivate well and do a good job in clarifying the truth. Some even use the amount of Dafa work they’ve done to evaluate how well they’ve cultivated. Such practitioners forget that their abilities and achievements came from Master and Dafa. They also forget what Master said,

“For a cultivator, all the frustrations he comes across among everyday people are trials, and all the compliments he receives are tests.” (“A Cultivator is Naturally Part of It” from Essentials for Further Advancement)

Practitioners should never forget that everything we have came from Master and the Fa. No matter how intense the tribulation may seem, as long as we keep Master and the Fa in mind and our thinking is righteous, Master will help us. We must absolutely respect Master and the Fa. The slightest thought that we are better than others might become a big loophole that the old forces can use to destroy us.

This is based on my current understanding. Please kindly point out anything not in accordance with the Fa.