Don’t “Be Forced” to Let Go of Attachments
[PureInsight.org] Some fellow practitioners and I had a similar experience: although we were aware of an attachment we had, we were unwilling to let it go, or let it go completely. The attachment lasted for quite a long time and only when we were “forced” to learn a lesson did we let it go completely.
I thought my attachment of personal interest had been discarded already. I rarely made a fuss about money when I went grocery shopping. However, I always liked to buy things on sale. Whether it was at a shopping mall or a grocery store, whenever I saw things on sale I wanted to buy some. The root of this attachment was nothing but “selfishness” and “self interest,” namely, using the least amount of money to buy the most goods. It was supposed to be easy to let go of this attachment, but I still hadn’t gotten rid of this “habit.” A couple days ago, a man was selling pears. The price was one Yuan per Jin (one Jin is 0.5 KG). I thought it was really cheap. Then I asked him if I could choose the pears myself. He said: “Yes.” So I bought two Jin of pears. After I went back home, I noticed that some of the pears had black rotten holes. The pears had looked smooth to me when I picked them out. I immediately enlightened: “Human thoughts! Human thoughts! Didn’t you want to profit at another person’s expense? Those pears were already on sale, but you didn’t consider if he could make a profit. You were so picky. Was this the behavior of a Dafa disciple? Your selfishness was so strong.” From then on, I completely got rid of my attachment of being keen to get things on the cheap and being picky. Master has told us to always put others first in whatever we do. Even for small things, we should always consider whether our behavior will hurt others before doing anything. The realm of a cultivator not only reflects in our rational maturity and the “big things” that we encounter, but it also manifests in selflessness and compassion on small things. Only after I received a serious rebuff was I willing to get rid of my human thoughts. I was too passive.
A fellow practitioner raised many birds. He often went for a walk carrying a birdcage. I talked to him several times: “How strong your attachment is! When you reach consummation, will you carry the birdcage to Heaven?” He said: “That’s the only attachment I have. Just wait a bit longer. I will surely discard this attachment in the end.” Several years later, he raised more birds. One morning when he fed the birds, he found that one bird had been eaten by a cat. His heart ached and he thought: “Is this testing whether I am moved? No, I will not be moved.” The next morning he found that the cat had eaten yet another bird. Then he couldn’t take it anymore. He searched for the cat instead of looking within for his attachment. He caught the cat and gave it to a friend who lived 100 miles away so that the cat wouldn’t come back again. I said to him: “The closer it gets to the end, the more pure the cultivator becomes. The Arhat fell down just because of his one single thought. You wouldn’t be able to reach consummation because of the birds. Why do you need Master to force you to discard this attachment?” He said: “Yes, yes.” You could tell that he was not willing to let go of his attachment to birds even under pressure. Sometimes it is so difficult to move forward a small step. However, everyone knows that no matter how difficult it is, we must absolutely move forward that step. Master has cleansed us every step of the way. Why would we hold onto that dirty stuff tightly without letting it go?
In fact, I also had some obvious attachments. For example, when I was a child, I liked cats and dogs. At that time, my family was poor, so when I slept, I always cuddled with the cat to keep warm. The dogs were always my pals in childhood. Now, I live in the city. However, whenever I saw children or adults walking with various dogs, I got excited and my eyes stayed on the dogs until they were far away. Curiously, the things that you keep thinking of will happen. My neighbor raised a cute little dog. The dog was very smart. Every time when it saw me, it would jump and hop in front of me. One time it held a flower in its mouth for me. People were laughing at me but I felt proud and close to the dog. Ever since then, I often bought delicious food for it. It got even closer to me. I knew it was an attachment and I wanted to discard it. However, every time I saw it, I couldn’t help thinking: “It is just a dog. I will discard the attachment later.” One day the dog defecated in the corridor. It was so smelly that people could smell it everywhere in the corridor. While another practitioner and I were cleaning it up, a well-dressed girl who usually respected me a lot passed by with her nose covered. The look that she gave me showed that she didn’t understand me. It was not the end of the story. The dog defecated again behind my shop. The customers and shop staff complaints about the awful smell could be heard everywhere. Then I immediately woke up: my attachment was even smellier than the dog’s feces. Why did I still keep it? From then on, my attachment to dogs and cats was discarded completely. When I saw that dog again, I felt it was just an ordinary dog and I didn’t get excited again.
A local practitioner had a bad temper. She often spoke with biting sarcasm and hurt people. She was the king of her husband and children. After she cultivated, her temper got better but she still couldn’t calm down when bad things happened. She knew it was an attachment and she wanted to discard it, but she wasn’t fully determined to do so. When other practitioners pointed out her shortcoming, she often disagreed, or she used the excuse that she did well in clarifying the truth in order to disguise her shortcoming. A while ago, I heard from another practitioner that she was beaten severely by someone and now she’s in the hospital. I felt bad for her. But I wasn’t surprised. I would be worried if she still couldn’t enlighten after this incident. When an attachment or demon nature lasts for a long time, certainly a big tribulation will happen. The old forces use that loophole to persecute you. The lessons are too many. In fact, I think that as soon as we notice our attachment, we need to get rid of it immediately and actively. Don’t leave it there without doing anything, or else one day a big lesson will happen.
The other day, a practitioner told me that every time he turned on his computer, he couldn’t help surfing some porn websites. In his mind, he knew he mustn’t do that, but he couldn’t help watching those garbage websites. Every time after he surfed the porn websites, he had a headache and muscle aches for many days. Finally, the physical stress made him realize that it was garbage. After he discarded that attachment, both his mind and body felt relaxed. Actually, I felt it was very dangerous. Many of those practitioners who were persecuted in prison were persecuted due to their attachments lasting for so long that the old forces used it against them and took advantage of it. Cultivation is serious; it is absolutely not a trifling matter. I am not saying that these practitioners were bad. I just wrote down what I saw and exposed it so that we could recognize our shortcomings and improve together. We shouldn’t be forced to cultivate; instead, we need to take the initiative to get rid of our human attachments and human notions and meet the requirements of the new universe as soon as possible.
Translated from: http://www.zhengjian.org/zj/articles/2009/11/24/62765.html