PureInsight | October 20, 2003
[PureInsight.org] I didn't plan to write any experience sharing initially, mainly because I thought that I still had a long way to go to achieve a good cultivation state. On second thought, however, maybe writing down some of my experiences, even lessons learned, can be beneficial to everyone's cultivation.
At a small local experience sharing conference in Texas two years ago, I shared some of my understandings of tribulations in marriage and family. Today I want to talk about the same topic again. As I mature in cultivation and gain deeper understandings of the Fa principles, my understanding of my tribulations continues to change, as well.
Looking back at two years ago, my heart feels heavy even now. At that time, my wife proposed to divorce me. Prior to her request, the conflicts between us, in the superficial level, were all relevant to my actively participating in local Fa activities, and stretching my limits on my time, energy and financial capabilities. At that time, I was out almost every weekend. I took part in all kinds of activities, big or small. Sometimes I drove to remote suburban cities to host seminars and enjoyed this thoroughly. The majority of practitioners in my city have non-practitioner spouses. Now thinking of this characteristic, maybe this is providing future cultivators a relatively comprehensive reference on this aspect. My reactions to family tribulations were a relatively negative example.
For a long time, I believed that my resolute participation in Dafa activities despite the barriers in my family was a reflection of my good cultivation state. In my mind and conduct, it was clear that I was not very happy with practitioners who had paid more attention than I to maintain a happy family. Now, looking back, I did not truly look inward during my family conflicts for more than a year. I often failed to hold onto my xinxing and quarreled with my wife, just like an ordinary person. In my mind, I excused myself from such behaviors because my wife was an ordinary person and I thought the tribulations she brought me were to test whether I was resolute with Dafa or not. My understandings at that time were not very mature. My continual tribulations were mainly due to the fact that for a long time, I had refused to look inward.
When fellow practitioners expressed different opinions on my marriage troubles, rather than calming down and reflecting inward, I complained about them. I thought "If you people can put more time into Dafa activities….. if you people shared more of the workload, then maybe my family tribulations won't be so huge. You don't contribute enough so I must bare huge resistance in my family. Maybe I'm having to deal with family pressure that you should have to deal with. Now, you see me in trouble, and instead of being grateful for all I've done, you complain to me? In this way, I blocked different opinions with my extremism and stubbornness. I took how much work I did for Dafa as the measure of my cultivation realm. I was wrong. This understanding was away from the Fa. And it reinforced the suppression that these practitioners received from other practitioners who had similar opinions to me. Even now, in some areas I may still have some wrong understandings like this. I hope that we can all pay attention to this topic so that together, we can reach a truly clear understanding of this from the Fa's perspective.
After this, my family conflicts evolved drastically. One day, my wife suddenly said that she would move out and separate from me. Frankly speaking, I was shocked. However, my unclear understanding of the Fa principles again was dominant. I thought: it's just another test of life and death. Isn't the attachment to a stable life the hardest for ordinary people to get rid of? Looking at myself, at that time, my passport had been seized by the Chinese Consulate, and now I had this conflict in my family. I felt that this was only the evil trying to shake my resolution in cultivation. I thought it was almost a joke. I felt I had to overcome the test quickly, so I tried to act nobly and accepted my wife's move-out request.
However, I sensed that something was wrong. Fa-rectification projects were occurring one after another. Just at the same time of my wife's move-out, urgent global rescue activities were being launched on a full scale. Practitioners in Texas also wanted to create a van tour to co-operate with the activities. Looking around, I saw manpower shortages. So, I put all my questions aside and again joined the van tour without hesitation.
Now in retrospect, my firm faith in safeguarding Dafa and participating in different Dafa was correct. However, cultivation is serious and solemn. As a cultivator, it's important whether we can get rid of impurities according to the Fa. Otherwise, we blend a lot of ordinary human attachments into our Dafa work and turn very solemn things into something not so pure.
Now, let me get back to my situation at that time. In the eyes of my wife, my going out without hesitation again and again was hopeless to her. Shortly after she moved out, she requested a divorce.
I finally sensed that maybe something was seriously wrong with me. I started asking myself: what am I doing?
What am I doing? I'm trying to clarify the facts to people. I put in so much time to tell people that Falun Gong practitioners are good people, who practice Truth, Compassion and Tolerance. The persecution is unjust. However, looking at my behavior and the results of my marriage, how would non-practitioners view all of this? What would people think once they know this directly or indirectly from my wife? Is what I'm doing safeguarding Dafa? Has it really achieved the effect?
Suddenly I was confused. My emotional behavior when reacting to conflicts and other things played back to me in my mind. At the same time, I realized how my family and friends could have misunderstandings of Dafa because of my wrongdoings. It disturbed me a lot. I had never felt so confused during my individual cultivation. I didn't know what to do. I didn't know why I was so nervous. One of the reasons may be that just at that time, Master has disclosed higher Fa principles to us. I understood that a person doesn't represent just a person; he/she corresponds to a vast group of lives. I realized the consequences of my refusing to improve on issues due to my long-term attachments.
Motivated by this uneasiness, I started comprehensively reflecting on myself. When I had the courage to face my issues, I could understand how my "resolution" and extreme reactions made my wife feel hopeless. She, as an ordinary person, just wanted a peaceful and secure life. If I put myself in her shoes, I would understand that there was nothing wrong with her wishes. I also thought of my motivation for actively participating in Dafa activities, and I saw my attachment to doing things and accumulating gong. At this point, I was so shocked that I questioned whether I was a genuine cultivator.
As the tribulations of my marriage escalated, this external force finally shocked my heart and woke me up. It shattered my shell of self-protection.
After deep analysis, I saw the deep-level distorted factors in my life, such as indifference, selfishness, stubbornness and arrogance.
Upon realizing my problems, I knew that I had no other choice but to simply make efforts to make up for my mistakes. Therefore, I admitted my wrongdoings to my wife and her relatives in the U.S. and parents in China. I hoped that they could help me rescue this marriage, knowing that I've realized my mistakes. However, the old evil forces wouldn't let me go easily. They used the distorted morality and marriage values, selfishness of human beings, and the evil field of the persecution to block my efforts. I felt I had no way out. All the people seemed to try to break the marriage up behind my back, while totally ignoring my sincerity in solving the issues.
Among fellow practitioners who knew my situation, I also felt that many practitioners were not content with me because they thought that I had damaged the image of Dafa. At that time, I didn't mind so much about how ordinary people viewed me. However, my heart ached when fellow practitioners didn't understand me.
After serious reflection, I made up my mind to stand up again, face the music and assume my responsibilities. As for those who didn't understand me, I treated them with my compassion and didn't give up my efforts to save the marriage.
Things ended up against my wishes. We still divorced a year later. Now, looking back, my attachment to the fear that the resulting divorce would cause could have lent further excuses to the evil to impose tribulations on me.
After the divorce occurred, I got rid of my worries about this result. I also realized that I should remove this mental burden and continue to do what a Dafa disciple should do. One thing that was very different from the past was that I felt that I treated many things with very different mentalities. I would try to do Dafa work with a purer heart and try not to consider whether the work was big or small. I didn't subconsciously think of doing so-called "big" things any more. I have become more willing to listen to different opinions of other practitioners. I also tried to form a habit of putting myself in other people's shoes when there are different opinions. When I saw that others' ideas were reasonable, I was willing to adjust my plans and ideas.
Due to my personal experiences in tribulations, when I saw fellow practitioners in other types of tribulations, I became more considerate and willing to help them all I can from my heart.
Before closing, I want to talk about my current situation. The predestined relationship between my divorced wife and I didn't end. One time when chatting with me, she was suddenly moved by the sincerity in my words. She decided to try to live with me again. I almost couldn't believe that this could truly be happening. However, I then felt that it was a natural result of my xinxing reaching a certain level.
This time, my wife and I persuaded her family that this was good and got married again. After we remarried, we bought a house and started a new life. Now, in addition to balancing my family life and cultivation, I try my best to go to social activities with my wife. I try to join in and do my best to manifest the image of a Dafa disciple. From some feedback I've obtained, the recovery of our marriage and my improvements have changed some misunderstandings of Dafa. I knew that everything's was advancing because of the rapid development of Fa rectification, evil being eliminated on a large scale, plus my approaching more maturity in my cultivation state. However, I also realized that I should not slack off on my self-requirements, as there were still many aspects I could improve according to the Fa. However, I firmly believe that as long as I study the Fa well and improve myself all the time according to the Fa, my environment will become better and better.
My lessons learned in my marriage and family life showed me the importance of assimilating to the Fa and looking inward. I knew that my shortcomings in these two aspects caused some of my problems. I sincerely hope that my sharing can be helpful to fellow practitioners. Let's take every step well, rationally, and maturely, and with a state of assimilating into the Fa.
Thank you Master. Thank you, fellow practitioners.
Translated from: http://www.zhengjian.org/zj/articles/2003/10/13/23959.html