PureInsight | October 11, 2013
Greetings fellow practitioners
My name is Alejandro Nadal, and I am a practitioner from Spain who obtained the Fa in 2006.
During the Shen Yun meeting recently held in New York, Master mentioned that practitioners in Europe were very passive. For years I have asked myself the same question: Why are there so many practitioners who engage very little in the Fa-rectification projects?
Most of the time I looked outside for the answer and rarely searched for it inside. The first time I noticed this was after studying Fa Teaching at the 2009 Greater New York International Fa Conference, in which Master says: “Those who manage things are responsible for this, and so are those who should cooperate--each is responsible. But has it occurred to you that we're always talking about how others ‘don't cooperate well,’ with some people always talking about how the management has this and that problem? In every case, that is looking outward, cultivating outward, and dwelling on what others are doing. Why don't we instead look for our own faults, and try to truly do well? If you can truly do things correctly, how will others view you? Then when you, as the coordinator, are anxious about getting something done, why don't you reflect for a moment on what you might have done inadequately that has led students not to want to do what you tell them? So you must remember, it is cultivation--exactly cultivation!”
It was clear to me that I had to look inward to find the cause of why most practitioners did not join the project of The Epoch Times in Spain. That was the first time I realized that my negative thoughts towards other practitioners were directly affecting the project and were creating a barrier in other dimensions that separated us and prevented us from working together.
For the first time I added a thought to eliminate all negative thinking towards my fellow practitioners every time I sent forth righteous thoughts, and for months I did everything possible to restrict any negative thought that arose towards fellow cultivators.
The situation changed very quickly, and two practitioners soon called to tell me that they had come to understand that they should be more involved in the project of The Epoch Times and asked me how they could help. These practitioners became two pillars of the newspaper and remain so today.
Soon after, the three of us arranged several meetings with practitioners from different areas of Spain in order to exchange ideas about the project and get more involvement, and the result was that about 40 practitioners came together to participate in one way or another.
However, I was not able to maintain this momentum for long, and negative thoughts recurred towards my fellow practitioners. Just as quickly as several practitioners had joined the project, many turned away or minimized their involvement.
Having more patience
Teacher said in Zhuan Falun, Lecture 2 (Transcending the Five Elements and the Three Realms): "Which level you will reach all depends on your cultivation. If you want to transcend the Three Realms, keep on cultivating yourself."
How many times did I read this sentence? However, it was still very hard for me to internalize it, and I recently found out why.
Worried about the economic situation of the newspaper, I asked a fellow practitioner for further involvement with sales. His response was that he was too busy with other projects, and it was impossible to do more than what he was already doing. This deeply upset me, and for several days I fell into a state of denial and looked down on fellow practitioners. I even spoke very badly to them. I was so upset that it took me several days to realize that I should look inside and find out why I was behaving that way.
First I realized I was not doing the three things well. As in previous situations, I had fallen, without realizing, because I gave more importance to doing things than to my own cultivation. I was not studying the Fa well, my mind wandered constantly and I did not make conscious efforts to concentrate. I was rarely and poorly sending forth righteous thoughts, my mind was on other things and I suffered from interfered sleep. I was exercising only once or twice a week, using my lack of time as an excuse. I felt very heavy as if I were bearing a heavy burden that was slowly causing me to sink deeper into the ground.
Well, it was clear to me that I had to first do the three things well and re-prioritize my cultivation. So little by little, since it was very difficult, I started studying the Fa better, I began to focus more while sending forth righteous thoughts and I started doing the exercises more regularly. All together it took me out of the state in which I found myself.
Then, one morning, I enlightened to how important it was to accept the difficulties with Ren in my heart, and how by doing so, the difficulties were resolved quickly and my xinxing rose.
Teacher said in Zhuan Falun, Lecture 1 (Why Doesn’t Your Cultivation Energy Increase When You Do Cultivation?): "What is xinxing? It covers many aspects of things, including De (virtues, a type of matter), Ren (forbearance), awakening quality, giving, giving up all kinds of desires and all kinds of attachments which are common to everyday people, and the ability to bear hardships. Only when every aspect of your xinxing has been improved, can you really go up."
I understood better than ever when Master said: “We say that when you face a conflict, take a step back and you will find the seas and the skies boundless, and it will certainly be another situation.” (Zhuan Falun, Lecture 9 - Enlightenment). Since then, I have tried to keep that in mind, and whenever a difficulty arose, I try not to worry and instead look inside and find a solution. I cannot do it all the time, but I try more consciously than before.
I see how this small improvement directly affects my relationship with my fellow practitioners and how everything flows more naturally when I am more tolerant. Even so, I still have much forbearance to cultivate and hope to do better from now on in this regard.
Being more compassionate
In my mind I am very fussy with others, but I do not always express it in words. I demand them to cultivate better, to do more things for Dafa, to get rid of their attachments, etc. Instead of looking at their good aspects, I see the bad and I judge and sentence them for it. I look at their attachments as if they were them. Instead of understanding that attachments are something they have accumulated and have not yet been able to eliminate, instead of thinking about how I could help them eliminate them, I thought those attachments were they themselves. He is selfish, he is lazy, she is fearful. How could I help them remove their attachments if I fixed them in stone?
Those negative thoughts form a dirty substance in another dimension that prevents us from assimilating to Zhen, Shan, Ren. It is a type of karma that makes it more difficult for us to cultivate, isolating us from the characteristic of the Universe. On the surface one might be doing all three things well, but if he or she makes no effort to eliminate this matter and continues increasing it, I think this karma could become serious sickness karma. So I think this issue is extremely important, and we should pay a lot of attention to it.
I recently found out that by developing more tolerance, I could be more compassionate. I could see the attachment as something external to the practitioner, and I could have the heart to help him or her remove it. I could change the demands in my mind into understanding and mercy, which is powerful enough to help momentarily dissolve any evil factor that could be exploiting the gap left by any attachment, and the practitioner responds positively. This compassion comes naturally from the heart and goes straight to the heart of the other person; one does not need to intend to be compassionate.
A week ago I decided to call each and every one of the practitioners involved in The Epoch Times for the very first time to summon a meeting to study the Fa and have a sharing. I have always called the meeting by email, thinking that it was enough, but once when I saw that only a few attended a meeting, I was angry, and my mind harbored all kinds of negative thoughts towards those who did not come. However, this time I decided to leave my negative thoughts aside and call even those against whom I had held a grudge in my heart for a long time, as if nothing bad had ever happened between us.
The result was that more practitioners came to the meeting. During the sharing, several practitioners appreciated the fact that I had personally called them. My words were the same as they were in the past, but my heart had changed.
While writing the above words at the Epoch Times office, one of the practitioners who thanked me for calling her came to say she wanted to distribute for an extra day in order to take part of my distribution work so that I could put more time into sales. The following day before starting the distribution, another practitioner also came to me and said she was willing to do part of my distribution so I could spend more time selling. Although I had asked for help in distribution for several months in order to put more time into selling, it was not until that meeting that this aid had come, right when my heart changed.
Yet I still have to cultivate much more compassion, and I see that one of the main reasons is that I give too much importance to myself.
Being more humble
At the beginning of my cultivation I found I had strong attachments to fame, recognition and showing off. Since then I have always tried to restrict myself in this regard, but these attachments have many layers, and when I measure myself with the Fa, I realize that they are still present and sometimes create a negative effect on my fellow practitioners.
I usually forget that I have skills that have been granted by Dafa to assist Master in rectifying the Fa. I take them as my own, and I am proud of them. I feel very capable, which makes me think that my ideas are the most correct and that my understandings are best suited. This sometimes leads me to quickly discard others’ ideas without much consideration, which discourages my companions who slowly begin to feel more separated from the project.
Also, I do not try to find out what skills Master has given to my fellow practitioners, so in my mind I limit their potential and distrust their ability, forgetting that every practitioner is equivalent to 100 or 1,000 ordinary people.
If I were more tolerant and compassionate, I would be able to remember that every Dafa disciple is extraordinary and that my work as a coordinator to promote the best of each practitioner so that he or she can give the best of him or herself in saving sentient beings.
More forbearance, more compassion and less importance to oneself are the very characteristics that I have observed in coordinators who have achieved greater involvement of practitioners in a project.
By observing the purity with which they act, I have been moved to tears by these coordinators, and I quickly understood how they managed to involve all practitioners and finally achieve the success of a project.
Without knowing, they have helped me change my way of looking at certain practitioners who I believed were impossible to deal with. They simply had more Shan and Ren than I had towards these practitioners and thus were able to make the best of these practitioners, achieving great success for the project. Thanks to them, I learned that I should put no limit on my forbearance or my compassion. I should not put limits on others’ abilities. I should be humble.
I thought that I was humble, but I was measuring myself with the standards of ordinary people, not the standards of the Fa. After looking at these coordinators, I see that I am still very far from reaching their humility and that I should make conscious efforts to move in this direction.
Being as diligent as I was in the beginning of my cultivation
In order to be more humble, the first thing I need to do is be more diligent doing all three things. I have to study the Fa better, I have to send better righteous thoughts, I have to clarify the truth and I have to do the exercises every day because doing so gives me enough energy to do all that I have to do more smoothly.
Master said in Fa Teaching Given at the Epoch Times Meeting: "The same holds true for working on The Epoch Times. It doesn’t matter what work you assume there, none of that represents the height of your cultivation. The only thing that matters is whether or not you are diligent. With cultivation, you know, what Gods and Buddhas look at is simply a person’s heart; they only look at whether or not you are diligent about your own cultivation."
Master also has reminded us in Fa Teaching at the 2013 Greater New York Fa Conference: "Often, people say to me things like, ‘In the past, when I read the Fa my level rose so quickly. And as I read the book, things that would improve my understanding were constantly revealed to me. How come I don’t experience that anymore?’ Then think about this: are you ‘cultivating with the heart you once had?’”
I take this opportunity to apologize to my fellow practitioners for my lack of humility. From now on I will do my best to prioritize my cultivation and look inside when I meet difficulties. I will be more tolerant and compassionate towards my fellow practitioners, and I will do everything possible so that together we can assist Master in saving more sentient beings. I will not let my Master down, I will fulfill my historic mission and I will return to my heavenly kingdom.
Thank you Master
Thanks fellow practitioners
(Speech at 2013 European Falun Dafa Experience-Sharing Conference in Copenhagen)