I began practicing Falun Dafa with my parents when I was five years old. It was very easy for me to sit in the lotus position, and I did not have many human notions. Many elderly practitioners said they wished they could be like me.
As I came in contact with more ordinary things, my thoughts gradually became more complicated. In college, many of my classmates regularly used Internet social media tools, and I did, too.
New Internet words surfaced each year, and I followed along and used such words to show I was keeping up. I never thought about the origin of these words, nor did I use Falun Dafa’s standards to evaluate them. I frequently used these words and thought that if I didn’t, my classmates would treat me differently.
We did a team project in one course during my senior year. The teacher gave us over 20 topics to pick from. I selected the topic “insulting words on the Internet” and recommended the topic to my team members. They unanimously approved.
I don’t know how I got so many good ideas about how to design the questionnaire, what questions to ask, which popular Internet words to select, and how to analyse the data. I was typically not a leader, but I naturally became the leader of our team for this project. Everyone thought my suggestions were very good.
As we prepared the questionnaire and analysed the data, I discovered that many of the Internet words originated from insults. For some words, their pronunciation weakened. Other words had their usage changed. And for some, the nature of the words changed.
Regardless of how they were changed, the insulting meaning of these words did not change. People used these words every day, but did not realize they were insulting others because their moral values had deteriorated. Until that time, I did not realize that I was also drifting along with that current.
Our team worked together well, and the teacher was satisfied with our work. He wanted us to write a paper together. He also allowed us to skip other work so we had more time to work on this project. That really helped, since I had a lot of homework. I got a very good grade in the course.
I later realized that Master had directed me to choose that topic so that I could learn the origin of those popular Internet words. I realized that using those words was no different than using insulting words.
Cultivating Speech and Removing Bad Words
I had never used curse words, even as I child. So I was shocked after I discovered that those popular Internet words were actually dirty words. Cultivators should not use that kind of language. I decided to correct this bad habit, but the process was not as simple as I thought it would be.
Some words had become my mantra, and I used them frequently. They often flew out of my mouth before I could stop myself. For some time after I realized I shouldn’t, I continued saying those words, which upset me.
I lived in a school dormitory, and many of the other students used those popular words. The words poured into my ears even if I did not want to hear them. It was so hard to change my habits of speech. I did not look within, but instead blamed others and my environment.
During the next few weeks, I got up very early each morning to seriously study the Fa and read Master’s lectures. Master tells us to look within. I did so, and analysed why I was using those popular Internet words.
I found that I was not being strict with myself. I didn’t pay attention to each of my thoughts, and didn’t correct them. I didn’t consider if what I said would hurt others, and also didn’t think about whether or not others liked hearing what I said. I just focused on how I felt good using such words.
After I realized my problem, I held back before speaking, and adjusted my thinking before I opened my mouth. Gradually, I felt awkward if the bad words slipped out of my mouth accidentally. I was eventually able to refrain from letting them spill out of my mouth. In time, the words were finally wiped out of my mind completely.
I found another reason why I used those popular Internet words. I regularly looked at social websites. Every morning, I first logged onto these websites to see if anything new had happened, instead of studying the Fa. I was polluting myself. After I realized this, I deleted my accounts on those social media sites.
Whenever an addiction arose in my mind, I sent righteous thoughts to remove it. I told myself that it was not my true thought. Before long, I was able to eliminate the desire to visit those websites.
This tribulation helped me understand something Master said:
“During your practice of cultivation, no matter what type of trouble you encounter, as long as you can start by examining yourself for the cause, you will be able to resolve any kind of problem. You have to search inside yourself when you encounter problems. As I said earlier, it’s not because others treat you improperly, but rather that there’s something wrong on your part. For example, if the grand cosmic body is in harmony but there is discordance on your part, and a knotty situation occurs only where you are, you are the one who isn’t in accord with others. When you spot the cause within yourself and correct that problem, the situation will become harmonious and calm, and everyone will treat you nicely once again. I used a simple example to illustrate this principle.” (“Lecture at the First Conference in North America”)
I used to think my classmates would dislike me if I did not use those words. Moreover, instead of looking within, I thought it was the environment that made it difficult for me to remove my use of bad language.
After I changed, my classmates also no longer used those words, and our relationships were not affected in any way. My classmates liked to discuss things with me, and they came to me if they had questions about their homework.
Young practitioners can be more easily affected by the Internet because they have gotten used to communicating via the Internet. I would like to remind young practitioners to pay attention to speech, and think through the origin of words before using them.
I also noticed that some practitioners curse about the weather. I realize now that the weather is managed by higher beings. Thus, cursing the weather is like cursing them, which is bad, and needs to be corrected.
Anything that happens in cultivation is not a trivial thing. I have used my example of cultivating speech to encourage other practitioners to improve together.