With or Without Projects, Cultivation Always Comes First
[PureInsight.org] When I read on the Zhengjian website the October 21, 2011 article, “Respect Teacher and the Fa and Place Projects in the Right Position,” I had the same feeling. Here, I want to talk about my experience of working on projects founded by overseas Dafa disciples.
Early in the persecution period, Dafa disciples founded a number of projects, such as media, which were designed for the purpose of exposing the persecution and to widely spread the Fa. They have been performing such responsibilities for more than a decade, effectively clarifying the truth and gaining repute locally and abroad, deterring and inhibiting the evil specter.
Because of this, Dafa disciples have confused the relationship between cultivation practice and Dafa projects. Dafa disciples’ projects are able to deter the evil not because the projects are great. The reason is, Dafa disciples have cultivated well in the process of carrying out the projects, validated the Fa and demonstrated the power of the Dafa of the universe through the medium of these projects.
Master, in the “Fa Teaching Given at the NTDTV Meeting” stated: “Of course, work at the TV station is not itself Dafa cultivation and it has no direct connection to Dafa. The station is run by Dafa disciples, and it is for the purpose of validating the Fa and saving sentient beings. That’s the connection. The station is not part of Dafa itself, but rather, it is a tool that is used by Dafa disciples to save sentient beings.”
Master has left us a broad and invisible way to practice. With or without the projects, practice is always first. If there were no projects, Dafa disciples could still practice. In China, Dafa disciples clarify the truth in vastly different ways everywhere. They are validating the Fa.
Overseas, some people think they are considered diligent in cultivation only if they are involved in projects. When Master’s lecture “Be More Diligent” was published, some people understood that they had to have a project to practice and only then could they reach consummation. Therefore, no matter whether conditions are appropriate, they want to squeeze into the project. This is a one-eyed understanding of Master’s Fa.
In the first lecture of Zhuan Falun, Master says: “However high your character is, that’s how high your gong is. That’s a Truth, and it’s absolute.”
This is the Fa of the universe and the standard of measurement is based on character. This would not change whether Dafa disciples did projects or not, or what kind of projects. The standard of a Dafa disciples’ cultivation status cannot be judged by “whether they do the projects or not.” This also cannot be treated as a guarantee to reach Consummation, as behind the actions and ideas of some practitioners there hides a heart harbouring intent and selfishness.
Master’s poem “Acting with Intent” (Hong Yin) says:
“How they busy themselves, building temples, worshiping,
Knowing not their acts are all for naught;
Lost in stupefying illusion, they vainly dream of journeying to the Western Paradise,
Groping blindly, walking in darkness, they try to scoop the moon’s reflection from water.”
The form each project takes is for us to cultivate. If we have an attachment to the form of the project, how is that different from “temple worship”? Even though many projects have become world-class, Dafa disciples who do not improve their xinxing, cannot become Buddhas. Of course, if Dafa disciples do not improve their xinxing, it is impossible to gain merit.
Master said in “What is a Dafa Disciple,” “Even if you are involved in Dafa disciples’ projects, in the heavens above there are no such things as television stations, nor do gods have newspapers. Those are forms in ordinary human society. If you don’t use righteous thoughts to guide yourself, and if you cannot manage to conduct yourself and look at the world and others according to the standard of a cultivator, like a Dafa disciple does, then you are the same as an ordinary person.”
Dafa disciples’ projects are an opportunity to complement and co-operate with each other. However, people who do the projects do not let go of their human notions and become attached. They have competing interests within the projects, and between the projects, and have grown attachments to their own business. They emphasize the importance of the projects, which brings about all kinds of human notions, showing off, becoming elated and overjoyed, chasing fame and fortune. There are also mutual constraints between projects. They look down on each other's situation, especially harbouring jealousy. There have also appeared situations that have sabotaged other projects.
Dafa disciples must identify the relationship between a project and practice. There are different kinds of media and thousands of different kinds of companies in the world. We only use a few in this form to practice.
Master said in “Teaching the Fa in the City of Los Angeles:” “What we are doing here is cultivation, and this is a process whereby lives are fundamentally transformed into high-level beings. What I am saying is, those in the audience here are all lives who are on their way to divinity.”
How a cultivator reaches fruit status will depend on how high his state is, not to see how high his position is in a project. A project is not an "umbrella" for practice and neither is it a safe harbor for avoiding ordinary society, nor is it a club for us to entertain. When the project has done well, it will be a tool for us to save people. If not, it will become a cultivator’s constraints. Working for a project does not mean to work for Dafa. If the process of doing is not in line with a cultivator’s righteous thoughts, it means you are doing an ordinary thing and do not have the mighty virtue.
I would like to talk about my shallow enlightenment here. Dafa disciples have to correctly position the relationship between Shen Yun Performing Arts and other projects. Some fellow practitioners regard Shen Yun as a project. I do not think so. Master is doing Shen Yun in person, and the lyrics of Shen Yun have been published in Hong Yin III. I enlightened that Shen Yun is part of the Fa and plays an extremely important role during the process of Fa rectification. From my understanding, when Dafa disciples reach Consummation, Dafa disciple’s projects will be left for future generations to continue with. “Shen Yun” will exist in the history of the new universe forever. Therefore, no project can be compared to Shen Yun. Nowadays, when many different projects have occupied Dafa and Dafa disciples’ resources, every project and Dafa disciple should be making promoting Shen Yun their highest priority. This is necessary when participating in the Dharma-ending period.
The above are my personal opinions for fellow practitioners’ reference.
Translated from: http://www.zhengjian.org/zj/articles/2011/10/25/78135.html