Looking Inward and Improving Myself in Cultivation
From the Eighth Internet Experience Sharing Conference for Practitioners in China
By Xinyuan, a practitioner from Handan City, Hebei Province
Greetings, our great compassionate Master!
Greetings, fellow disciples from all over the world!
How time flies! This is the eighth Internet experience sharing conference for practitioners in China. As the Fa-rectification progresses rapidly under Master’s merciful care, and with the help of practitioners and the motivational experience sharing articles from the Minghui website, I have struggled for 12 years to make progress little by little. I began cultivating Falun Dafa in 1999. Before practicing, I suffered from many different kinds of diseases, such as colitis, inflammation of the kidneys, and cervical spondylosis, which were all chronic and recurring. Incredible as it may seem, I was cured of all illness within a month after starting to cultivate. I am clear that Master cleansed my body and Dafa purified my mind. It is our revered Master who saved and purified me. Surrounded by Master’s boundless blessing, I can continue cultivating and become the happiest person in the world, and the most fortunate being in the cosmos.
However, I have taken a roundabout path, and experienced joy and sorrow through tests. I witnessed a turn for the better after I upgraded my xinxing. The following are some of my experiences during the process of cultivation over the years. I would like to report them to Master and fellow practitioners.
Upgrading My Xinxing
1. Eliminating the desire for self interest
I have indulged myself in worldly pursuits over my reincarnations. In society, where desires are everywhere, my true self was buried, and every cell in my body was soaked in the desire for reputation, self-interest, and feelings. I have a great attachment for self-interest. Sometimes when I think I have let go of something, it turns out that I still have a long way to go.
For example, once during negotiations involving a small-scale project, a person who had always been very friendly suddenly changed their attitude without explanation, and abruptly asked for 2,000 yuan. I was shocked by what happened, and my mind went blank. I tried my best not to quarrel with him, but I was caught off balance and felt very angry even after returning home. I told my colleague not to give any money to the man, who was obviously cheating us. However, the man insisted that we pay him the money and even tried to blackmail us over the phone. I calmed down and thought, “I am a practitioner, not an ordinary person. Nothing happens without a reason, and what happened to me was to help me let go of my attachment.” I evaluated myself according to the Fa, and look inward to find any desire for self-interest that I hadn’t gotten rid of. The man was just helping me to upgrade my xinxing. If I owed him a debt, shouldn’t I pay him back? A Dafa disciple should think about issues based on the Fa, rather than from the perspective of ordinary people. After this, I was no longer angry. Instead, appreciation arose from my heart. I immediately paid him 2,000 yuan. I felt completely relaxed and bright, and knew the real happiness that comes after upgrading xinxing.
As practitioners, there is a reason for everything we encounter that is closely related to our own cultivation. Master said,
“Therefore, from now on do not regard it as accidental when running into a conflict. Because when a conflict occurs, it will happen suddenly. Yet, it is not a coincidence. It aims to improve your Xinxing. As long as you conduct yourself as a practitioner, you will be able to deal with it properly.” (Zhuan Falun)
2. Looking inward during a conflict and eliminating adversity
As Fa-rectification makes rapid progress; there are stricter requirements according to the Fa. Because I was always straightforward with other practitioners, I usually had harmonious relations. However, one day, a practitioner told me, “Someone from our Fa-study group held a meeting behind your back, and you were replaced as the coordinator. This caused a dispute among many of the practitioners.” Upon hearing this news, I felt uncomfortable. This practitioner tried to marginalize me out of revenge because we didn’t always agree. I immediately felt the attachment to protect myself come up. I explained that the practitioner who had done this had preconceived notions about me. After I got home, I studied the Fa, looked within, and realized that I was at fault. The first notion I had after hearing the news was an ordinary persons notion. As practitioners, we should look inward during a conflict and improve ourselves. Why did I often concentrate on the deficiencies of fellow practitioners? Could another practitioner’s improvement be substituted for my improvement? Didn’t Master teach us to look inward? Why did such things affect me?
“As gods see it, for a cultivator to be right or wrong in the human world is not important in the least, whereas eliminating the attachments that come from human thinking is important, and it is precisely your managing to eliminate those attachments rooted in your human thinking as you cultivate that counts as important. (Applause) If you can manage to handle things calmly no matter how wronged you may feel, if you can remain unmoved and not try to come up with some kind of excuse for yourself, then with many things you won’t even need to argue. That’s because on your path of cultivation there is nothing that is by chance. So, when you get into a heated exchange and it stirs things up in you, or you get into a conflict over something that concerns your vital interests, perhaps the factors behind it were put there by Master.” (“Fa Teaching Given in Manhattan”)
Master is reminding me to upgrade my xinxing every time I have a conflict with fellow practitioners. Without any conflict, opportunities to upgrade xinxing would not exist, and my attachments wouldn’t be exposed. How would I improve myself? Maybe the practitioner didn’t realize this, and so we tested each other’s xinxing, which paved a path for our cultivation, which is a good thing. I recognized the faults of the other practitioner during this incident, and I looked inward and realized that I had many attachments that hadn’t been eliminated. For instance, when we couldn’t agree, many of my attachments were exposed, such as looking to find fault with fellow practitioners, being afraid of offending others, protecting myself, jealousy, and lacking kindness and compassion. These attachments didn’t belong to my true self, rather, they were notions formed as I grew up and arranged by the old forces. I told myself that I shouldn’t accept them, and I should get rid of them.
As Dafa disciples, we followed Master and descended to the human world from an incomparably splendid world. We are blessed with an historical mission, and are part of one body. Only if we cooperate with each other well, can we save more sentient beings. We are still practicing cultivation, and have deficiencies, so we should be tolerant toward each other. We must look at the merits of others, cherish predestined relationships, and correct ourselves according to the Fa. In this way, the conflict between the fellow practitioner and myself was eliminated. My impression of the practitioner changed, and all I could see was his merits. I thought of a time when we cooperated with each other doing the three things Dafa disciples are supposed to do. He was serious, responsible, and fully devoted to the project. He contributed his money, energy, and time. For example, he stayed up an entire night to rewrite articles, and he performed the tasks really well. During the following process of cultivation, I should cooperate well with fellow practitioners, learn from others’ strong points, look inward, and really cultivate.
Becoming Compassionate while Clarifying the Truth Face to Face
1. Eliminating attachments while clarifying the truth
After Master’s article “Hurry Up and Tell Them” was published, I tried to clarify the truth face to face. Some people easily accepted what I was saying and would listen and complete the “Three-Withdrawals.” This made me happy; however, there were some people who didn’t believe me, didn’t want to listen, and even said bad words. They attempted to report me to the authorities, which made me unhappy. I would tell myself, “Can’t you tell the difference between good and evil? Let’s wait and see. In the future when you are suffering from retribution, it will be too late.” Instead of being compassionate toward sentient beings, I wanted vindication for what I was saying. I was looking at and interacting with others through my attachments. For example, once I went to do business in another town and ran across a young man waiting for someone on the side of the road. I went over to talk with him, to clarify the truth to him, and to persuade him to do the “Three-Withdrawals”. At first he was peaceful, and said that some of his family believed in religion and cultivation. But then he changed his attitude and said that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) controlled the world, so we’d better be obedient, and he didn’t believe that doing the “Three-Withdrawals” would keep him safe. When he finished, I told him that Falun Gong had spread to more than a hundred countries in the world, and Heaven was going to eliminate the CCP. Then he said kiddingly, “Don’t tell me this. I am a policeman, and I’m going to call my department.” I didn’t back down. I said; “Young man, if you do this, your actions will harm you. You will pay for your behavior.” He was unpleasant and said, “I will make you pay.” With this, another young man encouraged me to leave as quickly as possible, which I took to be a hint from Master. Then I left on my bike. I started to send righteous thoughts, and looked inward immediately. I realized that when I was clarifying the truth to him, I merely focused on trying to persuade him, and forgot about being compassionate, so I unable to persuade him. Attachments can never save a person, but in contrast, they can only stir up the negative elements.
Master said in “Fa Teaching Given in Manhattan”,
“What this means is, nothing that you come across as you go about saving sentient beings and validating the Fa is coincidental. Nothing is that simple, be it something seemingly minor, what thoughts someone has, or the wide array of people and things that you run into when you are clarifying the truth. But, it’s only acceptable when you go about things with compassion in your heart. Don’t be bothered when people have a certain attitude or misunderstandings. When you act just to save the person, to save sentient beings, then I think the impact of that can change everything. If, however, as you clarify the truth your mind is affected by ordinary human attachments, then you won’t be able to achieve anything.”
I looked inward and found that I was not compassionate enough. I was not holding that sentient being in my heart, but rather, I was thinking about what a high position I was in. “Look at me, I am a Dafa disciple, and I am clarifying the truth to you and saving you, but you don’t realize it.” My lack of kindness irritated his negative side. How could I save people with the attachments of showing-off and being competitive? Rather than saving people, I was pushing them away. I learned a good lesson from my experience. I calmed down and studied the Fa well because I thought compassion came from the Fa. Also, I used a peaceful tone to clarify the truth, put myself in the other person’s shoes, and avoided saying certain things, and the results of my clarifying the truth got better.
Compassion carries the power of kindness. I feel that the true meaning of “kindness” is far from just talking nicely to and treating someone well. Instead, “kindness” is the natural reflection of a disciple’s level, and it comes from diligent cultivation. When I study the Fa deeply, I make breakthroughs in clarifying the truth. I take time every day to clarify the truth, and never pass up an opportunity when I go out to do business. I clarify the truth to all kinds of people: vegetable peddlers, passers-by, people standing on the side of the road, taxi drivers, etc. I also clarify the truth to all ages of people, from senior citizens who are in their 80’s, to teenagers. By continuously clarifying the truth, studying the Fa, and sharing experiences, I constantly improve myself. I also get a lot of help from fellow practitioners’ experience sharing articles on the minghui.ca website. I feel very strongly that before I go out to clarify the truth, I must study the Fa well and send the righteous thoughts well. In this way, I can obtain good results. Because I have strong righteous thoughts, what I say has the power of the Fa.
2. Saving people without judgment
I clarify the truth to veterans. I patiently clarify the truth when I meet veteran Red Army men, and veterans or seniors who are engaged in education. They are the generation that has been most severely poisoned by the CCP, and they have suffered a lot from previous movements launched by the CCP. We must urgently save them. I talk to them to learn what they think. I mention the movement against the “three evils" and the “five evils", the Cultural Revolution, the Tiananmen massacre, and the corruption of the CCP. They tend to be very clear about the CCP’s behavior and they are sympathetic to Falun Gong and want to do the “Three-Withdrawals”. Once I came across a senior citizen who was a retired educator. I told him, “With so many people around, I have the good fortune to meet you, and I have something good to tell you. “Withdrawing from the CCP can save your future, for the CCP will be eliminated by Heaven.” At first he was shocked, and then said excitedly, “Thank you for telling me this with such confidence. In my heart, I know this to be true, and I know what to do.”
Once I met a young man walking a dog in the park. After talking with him for a while, I knew that he was a policeman. I asked him, “Have you ever dealt with people who practice Falun Gong?” He said “No.” Subsequently, I clarified the truth to him and persuaded him to do the “Three-Withdrawals.” I told him, “Don’t forget to save yourself by withdrawing from the CCP.” He didn’t say anything Then I said, “I think we both should be considered good people. Can I help you with the ‘Three-Withdrawals’ by providing you with an alias?” He smiled and said, “Sure!” Actually, Master has paved the path for us. Only if we keep righteous thoughts and save people with compassion can Master do everything for us. Master tells us that:
“Compassion can harmonize Heaven and Earth, ushering in spring
Righteous thoughts can save the people in this world.”
(“The Fa Rectifies the Cosmos” from Hongyin Volume II)
Now when I meet people who refuse to listen to the truth, I no longer feel angry; rather, I feel pity for them. Sometimes when I see the streams of people rushing along the street, struggling to advance themselves in their careers for the so-called “better life”, and competing for reputation, self-interest, and glamour in the future, I feel sorry for them from the bottom of my heart. People have become lost in the human world and have totally forgotten their true purpose. They require a Dafa disciple to awaken their righteous and kind side. At this critical time, Master requires us to shoulder a historical mission. We must hurry to save people and to pull them away from the old forces, so that they can remember the promise they made in a pre-historic time. Faced with such a colossal mission, and having trust instilled in us by Master, we don’t have any excuses to not do well. Sentient beings expect us to do well. During the last phase of Fa-rectification, we should be diligent in cultivation and eliminate our deficiencies, firmly do the three things that Dafa disciples are supposed to do, go forward righteously and steadily, complete our historical mission, while living up to Master’s compassionate mercy. Master asks us to be as diligent as when we began cultivating the Fa. We must follow Master’s teaching.
My cultivation level is limited. Please kindly point out anything inappropriate. Heshi.
Posting date: 12/9/2011
Category: 8th Internet Experience Sharing Conference of China
Chinese version available at http://minghui.ca/mh/articles/2011/11/30/明慧法会–时时向内找-249213.html