Facing Relationships in Cultivation With Righteous Thoughts
(Minghui.org) I began practicing Falun Dafa more than 20 years ago. The longer I cultivate, the deeper my understanding of the Fa becomes.
My brother introduced me to Falun Dafa in 1997. The first time I read Zhuan Falun, I felt that I was fortunate to have found this cultivation practice. I have experienced many tribulations, passed many tests, and learned many lessons throughout my journey of cultivation.
Falun Dafa practitioners have predestined relationships among one another. The old forces have made good and bad arrangements, affecting these relationships. There are also sentimental ties, such as sentiment between parents and children or between husband and wife. These ties create attachments that interfere with a practitioner's cultivation.
Many practitioners may not be able to recognize their predestined relationships. They may have run into a practitioner whom they don't know, yet they feel they have known this person for a long time.
Practitioners may also run into practitioners they dislike. They know that they should look inward to improve themselves, but the dislike keeps affecting their relationship. Such situations create barriers among practitioners and interfere with the cooperation among practitioners. This could be due to arrangements by the old forces.
If we can treat predestined relationships in the right manner, we will be able to deny the old forces' arrangements and let go of our dislikes. That does not mean that one needs to know the details of past relationships.
“The complicated situation faced by the cosmos’s Fa-rectification is beyond the comprehension of human beings, and the interference by the old forces’ arrangements has been very severe. Master just doesn't want you to get mired in the details of the tangled mess and have it affect your cultivation. Instead, I ask you to treat sentient beings with the broadest mind and utmost compassion.” (“On the Waves Stirred Up by the Article About Assistant Souls”)
Attachment to Sentimentality
My brother began to practice Falun Dafa because he was suffering from a liver disease at the time. He attained good health shortly after he started practicing. His short temper improved, and he stopped fighting with me. After I took up the practice, I no longer hated him, and our relationship improved greatly.
Master allowed me to see our previous lives: we were divine beings but fought each other. We both died during a battle and dropped down to the human world. I injured him before I died, causing damage to his liver.
My brother met his future wife when we were students. He was filled with sentiment for her, which interfered with his cultivation. She agreed to practice Dafa, but I realized that this was only because of her feelings toward him. I talked to them several times, telling them to let go of their affection for each other and cherish the opportunity to cultivate.
I lost contact with my brother due to the persecution and other reasons, but we met up again a few years ago. I found that he was still stuck in the old forces' arrangements of sentimentality.
Similar situations to that between my brother and I are common among practitioners. Only through diligent cultivation can one balance well the relationships between family members. There is a lot of interference from the old forces' arrangements when it comes to one’s family. If one studies the Fa well, one will be able to follow the Fa's guidance, get rid of the attachments, and break through the old forces' arrangements.
I understand that everything a practitioner experiences is predestined. Master has made the best arrangements for us, which will help us reach Consummation. But the old forces have taken advantage of all of our loopholes throughout history and imposed a set of arrangements on us. These loopholes include sentimentality to relationships.
Dafa resolved the negative relationship between me and my brother, but the old forces still tried to interfere. I have let go of all bad feelings between us, but my brother still cannot find the barrier in his heart, which interfered with him listening to me.
The old forces also made the arrangements for him and his wife, and they took advantage of my brother's loopholes and interfered with his cultivation.
To deal with the old forces' arrangements, one must practice solid cultivation. Master has arranged many opportunities for my brother to improve. As long as he can see this issue based on the Fa, he has a chance to make a breakthrough. Every practitioner and every sentient being must choose his or her own future. It is up to us whether we can reach Consummation.
Master's Arrangements and Those of the Old Forces
My wife and I met after the persecution began, and we got married in 2003. I was aware that our marriage is partially due to the old forces' arrangement, but I believed that solid cultivation can break their arrangements.
Every tribulation I have encountered during my cultivation was caused by my human notions or attachments, but my solid belief in Master and the Fa has never wavered.
I told my wife about our predestined relationship and helped her reject the old forces' arrangements.
At first, she didn't know how to distinguish between arrangements made by Master from those of the old forces. I told her that she needed to maintain strong righteous thoughts. No matter what we run into, good or bad, as long as we can look inward and cultivate, we will turn everything into good things. So even if we run into the old forces' persecution, as long as we cultivate, Master will help us improve.
I had the attachment to “self”, and the old forces took advantage of it. Although Master hinted to me the danger of being arrested, I was unable to deny the persecution due to my strong attachments and was arrested and sentenced to prison.
My wife was also sentenced to prison, but given our solid belief in Dafa, Master saw our righteous thoughts and helped us get released and leave China.
Conflicts Present Opportunities to Improve
My wife has been involved in many Dafa projects since we moved overseas, but she often had conflicts with other practitioners. I talked to her many times about this, but she continued to look down on some practitioners or held hatred toward others.
I told her that all conflicts are opportunities for us to improve in cultivation. The relationships among practitioners were formed in previous lives so that we can assist Master during the period of Fa-rectification. We need to cherish this time together.
To ensure that we don't get lost in the human world, Master has arranged the relationships for us so that we can help each other and remind each other of our goal. Behind every practitioner we meet in this lifetime, there is a profound relationship that has developed through many lifetimes. This is the understanding I came to after reading Master's poem, “Fulfilling the Vow” from Hong Yin.
Many practitioners cultivate diligently in China, so there were no conflicts among us, even though we pointed out each others problems. However, in the cultivation environment overseas, many practitioners try to protect themselves, creating barriers between us. We can't have direct and honest discussions.
Sometimes I talked to practitioners, trying to help them get rid of some of their human notions, but the results of our conversations were not always good.
I understand that I need to be responsible for them. Whether or not they accept my words, I need to do my best to help them.
The old forces have imposed bad substances on practitioners' relationships. The fights and conflicts are these substances. The old forces use them to make us have attachments. So, we need to look inward.
Cherishing the Opportunity to Cultivate
Master allowed me to see in a dream the relationships between my wife, my mother-in-law, and me. We all cultivated in Dafa on the previous Earth during its final period. My wife, who was male, and her mother were husband and wife back then, and I was their good friend.
Due to strong sentimentality, they slacked off in their cultivation. I left them and cultivated until I reached Consummation. But I did not leave the earth right away. Knowing that the earth was about to disintegrate, I found them and told them.
Although I made them aware of the dire situation, they gave up cultivation because of sentimentality. But, I knew that we would meet again on this earth.
When my wife learned about this, she was shocked. Finally, she understood that the strong sentimental relationship she had with her mother was actually arranged by the old forces. She began to use righteous thoughts to rectify the relationship between her mother and other practitioners, and she tried to eliminate all unrighteous thoughts she had.
In cultivation, we point out one another’s mistakes, we protect one another, and we also have conflicts. We improve ourselves through all of these, which are all Master's arrangements.
At the final stage of Fa-rectification, let us cherish our relationships, help one another, and cultivate diligently. Let's get rid of our attachments to sentimentality and fame and get out of these traps. Let's do the three things well and cherish the cultivation opportunities Master has given us.