One Fight Revealed My Deeply Hidden Ego

A Dafa Disciple in China

PureInsight | August 4, 2013

[] I had always thought that I was not ego-centric. Whenever I was dealing with other practitioners, I would always maintain a calm mentality. However, a recent incident had exposed my deeply hidden selfishness. I came to realize that I still had a very strong attachment to my own ego, and this attachment had become much more difficult to detect.

The other day, one of my sisters called me from my mother’s house telling me that my mother appeared to have developed symptoms of a stroke. I started to think about my mother’s problems as I hurried to her house. She has very strong faith in Falun Dafa and she studies the Fa and practices the exercises every day. She also performs SFRT on time, yet, she is very stubborn sometimes and has been somewhat bossy in the family. Everyone has to listen to her. I had talked to her about this on many occasions but she would refute it most of the time. Now, she was sick again. Could it be that the old forces had taken advantage of her shortcomings? If that was the case, I had to talk with her once again so that she could come to realize the problem and perhaps her sickness karma would be eliminated immediately.

When I arrived at my mother’s house, my two younger sisters, who are both practitioners, were already there. I said: “Look, Mom has suddenly developed this symptom, there must be a reason. Let’s have a talk with her and see where the problem is?” One of my sisters responded very bluntly: “Don’t say anything right now, let’s just send forth righteous thoughts together.” Everyone started to erect their hands to send forth righteous thoughts. I said to myself: at this very critical moment, we really should enlighten to the proper and correct resolution. The most important thing was to find out the cause for the apparent sickness. After that we could SRFT and the effects would be much more powerful. We had not discussed anything and yet we immediately ventured to SRFT. I questioned myself: “so what kind of thoughts should we send forth?” I may be thinking about one thing and my sisters thinking about another—there was simply no focused group power. I felt somewhat frustrated that my sister didn’t even let me speak before pulling me into SFRT. I was not calm at all when doing it. After we finished my sister continued: “No matter what might be the cause of mom’s sickness, let’s just cleanse the influences with our righteous thoughts today, let’s not yield to the evil forces’ persecution. Today’s not the time to discuss the cause.” I then returned: “Yes, it is all right to SFRT, however, mom has been attached to too many human notions. Isn’t it time for us to talk about it and try to see where the problem lies? This is very important in helping resolve mom’s problem.”

My sister silenced me immediately: “What is there to talk about? What are you trying to seek? Let’s just SFRT today; you don’t have to say anything today.” I had thought about a plan to address mom’s problem and I was very confident that my plan would work. However, now that it had been coldly rejected, I lost my usual calm mentality very quickly. I still realized that I should not fight with my sister so I went to a room by myself.

My other sister came to talk to me. As if I had found an ally, I started to tell her my story, saying: “Aren’t we here trying to find the cause of mom’s problem? We really shouldn’t just simply SFRT right now.” She said: “Well, our sister asked us to SFRT, so let’s just do it. Why are you having so many issues today?”

I couldn’t control myself anymore: “What? Why are you not letting me speak today? Isn’t it the right thing to do to try to find the root cause of mom’s problem so that she can improve herself quickly?” Obviously, I was not looking inward; I was just trying to use the Fa to suppress or viewpoints.

To my utter surprise, my sister continued: “You know what mom’s problem has been. Every time you come around, don’t we always discuss it? Have we found the cause yet? Have we found any fundamental issues? Ok, since you are so bent on talking about it today, go ahead and tell us what you think!”

Right at that moment, I felt as if my mind was going to explode. My heart was beating heavily and I wanted to leave immediately. I then realized that if I just left without saying anything, I would simply fall into the separation trap that had been set up by the old forces. Not only would there be no group power, my mother’s sickness would be aggravated as well, and the old forces would laugh at us. Nonetheless, I found it very difficult to continue to stay in my mother’s house, and I kept talking to myself: “Is my understanding wrong? Why aren’t they accepting my suggestions today?”

In retrospect, I should have let go of my own ego and stop fighting with my sisters. I should quietly cooperate with them to SFRT; that would have been a totally different outcome. The improvement of my character didn’t hinge on whether or not my suggestions were good or accepted. The crucial thing was whether or not I had forgone my own attachment to my ego. Master has said: “But true improvements come from letting go, not from gaining” (“Teaching the Fa at the 2002 Fa Conference in Philadelphia, U.S.A.”).

Still, in the end I couldn’t calm down and decided to leave. I got back home with a very heavy heart. On my way back I kept thinking: “Was I wrong today? Where was I wrong? Did I not understand the Fa properly? I don’t think I behaved incorrectly.” I was much too entangled in my own thoughts and I noticed that I had lots of complaints and aggressive thinking. After I got back home I decided to cleanse myself of those bad thoughts, and gradually I seemed to lose all my complaints. I felt my energy field was becoming much brighter.

While I was cleansing my thoughts, I suddenly realized that today’s fight with my sisters was not only meant to get rid of my complaining mentality, but more importantly, it was about letting go of my deeply hidden ego. This ego was not that easy to detect; it was not very simple and direct in revealing itself. I had always thought that I had been mature enough and rationally in line with the Fa that I could always make the right decision and judgment for myself and for others. It seemed that whatever I concluded was always in accordance with the Fa, and it was the best choice available. When other practitioners’ ideas matched that of mine, I would readily accept them; otherwise, I would refuse right away. In my mind, it was clear that my ego was standing out just like a mountain right in front of me. This mountain was standing there, blocking my view and making it difficult to accommodate others. When I saw this mountain in my mind it started to crumble. My righteous thoughts rushed across the mountain like a thunderstorm. Right at that moment I came to recall Master’s teaching: “Actually, did you know that those Great Enlightened Beings have a lot of things in the heavens that they too need to coordinate and discuss with each other?” “So what's their state of mind? It's tolerance, an extremely immense tolerance, being able to accept other beings, and being able to truly think from other beings' perspectives. This is something a lot of you haven't achieved yet in your cultivation, but you're gradually catching on and achieving it. When another God proposes an idea, they aren't eager to reject it, and they aren't eager to express their own ideas and they don't believe that their own ideas are good. Instead, they look at what the end result of the other God's proposed approach will be. The paths are different—everyone's path is different—and the truths that beings validate and enlighten to in the Fa are different, too, but the results might very well be the same. That's why they look at the results, and if the result of a God's idea can achieve the goal, if it can truly achieve it, then all of them will go along with it. That's how Gods think. Also, if there's something lacking in it they'll unconditionally and quietly supplement it to make things more complete and perfect. That's how they handle things” (Excerpts from “Teaching the Fa at the 2002 Fa Conference in Philadelphia, U.S.A.”).

I came to realize that whenever I started to think that my own understanding on the Fa was mature and proper, this was exactly the time when my own understanding was not mature and proper. I was emphasizing myself too much and I was inhibiting others’ ideas. Wasn’t that a serious problem for me? What was the difference between my thinking and the old forces’ arrangements? I should only try my best to align with the Fa, to elevate myself so that I could meet the standards for the beings of the new universe. Right then, I felt complete relief and that I had genuinely improved myself from this incident.

One hour later, my sifter called me and said cheerfully: “Are you still upset? I was wrong today. I don’t know what was going on, but I was also very upset; please don’t get mad at me anymore.” I immediately sensed I was falling behind my sister regarding this conflict; why was I the first one to make the call and apologize? It seemed that there were still too much ego inside myself, blocking me from taking the first step toward my sisters.

The next day my other sister also came to visit me and apologize. She said: “I was wrong yesterday. I always thought you were very accommodating and forgiving and I didn’t realize that I had hurt your feelings badly. We should not let the old forces separate us. As a matter of fact, I was not trying to stop you from expressing your thoughts yesterday. I was simply thinking that we should first SRFT to try to clean up all those messed up things that were persecuting mom. I was thinking that we should not give the old forces any time and that we could always have time to discuss the issues afterward.” After hearing these words, I was almost speechless. Only Dafa practitioners can have such accommodation toward others. Only those individuals that have cultivated in Falun Dafa can let go of their self and form an insurmountable integrated entity.

Shortly afterward she kindly reminded me: “I have heard of many of your discussions with fellow practitioners; some of your understandings were very good and some were very ego-centric. For example, you seem to like to talk in front of everyone and keep talking without giving others a chance to weigh in. Everybody has to listen to you and you are the only one that is correct. Isn’t that the case?” I immediately acknowledged and thanked my sister for pointing this out.

Through this incident, I have made a great stride toward the complete elimination of my ego. One more layer of human attachment is gone.

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