Recently, I read a story that made me think a lot.
The story was about Li Linfu, the Prime Minister for Emperor Xuanzong in the Tang Dynasty. When he was young, he met a person that cultivated Taoism. The Taoist said to him, "I've been travelling around the world for five hundred years before I found you, who has a predestined relationships to immortals. If you're willing to cultivate, you'll reach consummation and enter godhood. If you don't want to cultivate, you will be the Prime Minister and a powerful figure for twenty years. Go home and think about what I said and then tell me what you want to be." Later, Li Linfu chose to become a Prime Minister. The Taoist was very disappointed and said, "It took me five hundred years to find a person like you, yet you are so attached to everyday people's power and wealth. You have missed this opportunity. I sigh for you!" When Li heard this, he felt regret and wanted to change his mind. The Taoist said, "All the gods have heard what you said. It's too late to change. However, when you become a Prime Minister, you should try to help as many people as possible. Do not kill innocent good people and you'll have another chance to become an immortal after three hundred years." When Li became the Prime Minister, he started to kill people who had different political opinions from him. Many people were wronged and people always complained about him.
One day, Li once met the Taoist cultivator. Li knelt down to him. The cultivator said, "I told you to accumulate virtue yet you killed so many innocent people. The Emperor of Heaven knows everything you did and the punishment you'll receive is huge." Li kept kowtowing and said, "You mentioned I would be given another chance to become an immortal in three hundred years. Do I still have that chance?" That person said, "What you did was against the laws of the cosmos. Therefore, you'll have to wait for three hundred years more. You might have a chance after six hundred years." Li regretted what he did.
Li's one thought made himself wait for six hundred years. I was moved by this story since my recent experience made me realise the importance of keeping righteous thoughts when we cultivate in everyday people's society. We might drift away from the Falun Gong teachings if we cut ourselves some slack. When we focus on living a better life, we might not be so diligent in striving forward. When we pursue comfort, we might unintentionally lower the requirements on our improvement. If so, we could cause delays and huge losses to clarifying the truth.
One week ago, my mother-in-law was admitted to the intensive care unit in a hospital since she was scheduled to have cholelithotomy. My father-in-law also needs care. Therefore, I went to their home in the countryside to take care of them. However, I kept thinking of what I needed to do and I didn't want to cause any delay. I told myself, "I must strive forward diligently! I must strive forward diligently!" The original plan was I needed to stay there for almost one month. However, when I got there, my sister-in-law asked me when I needed to go back. I didn't shy away from my responsibilities, however, I did always remember the three things that Teacher asked us to do. When I was in the countryside, I had more spare time and therefore I was able to continue to study the Fa and send forth righteous thoughts. Before, my family would ask me to stay longer to take care of my parents-in-law since I'm a housewife. Yet this time, my two sisters-in-law took time off from their work to take care of my parents-in-law while asking me to go back. When it was my turn to go back to countryside, my husband's school was on recess. He knew the importance of clarifying the truth and therefore he went back to the countryside for me.
When I was in the countryside, I simply did what I was able to do, like studying the Falun Gong teachings and sending forth righteous thoughts. When my father-in-law was at the hospital and didn't need me, I went to coffee shops to speak to people via the Internet so that they too could have a chance to learn the truth. I knew I shouldn't stay there for too long. But I didn't shy away from my family responsibilities either. In fact, I was able to do a lot of things when I was at the countryside and I was able to come back when I needed to. I came to realise that Teacher would make the best arrangements for us as long as we are determined and strive forward diligently.
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