How to Pursue the Truth (1) Part One

What topic did we fellowship on at our last gathering? (Why man must pursue the truth.) After we finished fellowshiping, I gave you a homework topic—what was it? (How to pursue the truth.) Have you contemplated on this topic? (God, I have contemplated on it a little. When it comes to how to pursue the truth, it is about examining our outpourings of corruption and corrupt dispositions in all the people, events, and things that we encounter each day, and then seeking the truth to resolve these issues. At the same time, the performance of a duty touches on certain principles, so we must seek relevant truths to understand how to act according to these principles when we are approaching different duties—that is another way that pursuing the truth is practiced.) So for one thing, seeking the truth in one’s daily life, and for another, by seeking the truth principles while fulfilling one’s duty. Are there any other aspects of this pursuit? This should not be a difficult topic, should it? Did you contemplate on “How to Pursue the Truth”? How did you contemplate on it? Contemplating on this topic should entail spending a certain amount of time thinking about it, and then making notes on the knowledge gained through that contemplation. If you only take a quick look at it and think about it a little, but do not spend time or energy on it, or think about it carefully, that is not contemplation. Contemplating means that you think about the matter seriously, you put real effort into pondering it, you gain some concrete knowledge, and you receive enlightenment and illumination, and you reap some rewards—these are results that are achieved through contemplation. Now, did you really contemplate on this topic? None of you really contemplated on it, did you? Last time, I gave you homework, a topic so that you could prepare, but none of you contemplated on the topic and you did not take it seriously. Were you hoping that I would just spoon-feed you? Or did you think, “This topic is very simple, there’s no depth to it. We’ve already figured it out, so we don’t need to contemplate—we already understand it”? Or is it that you are not interested in questions and matters related to the pursuit of the truth? What is the problem? It cannot be that you are too busy with work, can it? Really, what is the reason? (After listening to God’s questions and reflecting on myself, I think that the main reason is that I do not love the truth. I did not take God’s words seriously, and I did not earnestly contemplate on the truth. I was also hoping to be spoon-fed an answer. I was hoping that once God had finished fellowshiping on the topic, I would be able to understand it. That was the attitude that I had.) Are most people like this? It seems that you are used to being spoon-fed. When it comes to the truth, you are not very meticulous and you do not make much of an effort. You especially love doing things and running around blindly. All you do is idle your time away; you are muddle-headed when dealing with the truth, and you do not take it seriously. That is your true state.

How to pursue the truth is one of the topics most commonly fellowshiped on in God’s house. Most people understand some doctrine about how to pursue the truth, and they know some approaches and ways to practice it. There are some people who have believed in God for a long time who more or less have some real experiences, and they have also experienced failures and falls, and have had negativity and weakness. In the process of pursuing the truth, they have also experienced many ups and downs, and in pursuing the truth, they have learned from their experiences and have some rewards. Naturally, they have also encountered many difficulties and obstructions, as well as various actual problems in their lives or environments. In short, most people have some level of understanding about the pursuit of the truth, whether in form only or through some practical problems, and they also have some doctrinal knowledge of it. Once people have started believing in God or walking the path of the pursuit of the truth, regardless of whether they have really paid a price on that path or if they have only made a little effort in their approach to pursuing the truth, more or less all of them will have some understanding of it. For those who love the truth, this understanding represents genuine and precious rewards, but those who do not pursue the truth have no experience, no learning from their experience, or reward. In sum, the majority of people are moving forward hesitantly and harboring a “wait-and-see” attitude while pursuing the truth, while at the same time experiencing a bit of what it feels like to pursue it. In most people’s thoughts, views, or consciousness, pursuing the truth is a positive thing and of the greatest significance. They think of it as a life goal that people should pursue, and even more than that, as the correct road that they should follow in life. Whether on a theoretical level or based on their real experiences and knowledge, people all regard pursuing the truth as a good thing and the most positive thing. There is no pursuit or path that mankind engages in that can compare to the pursuit of the truth or the path of pursuing it. Pursuing the truth is the only correct road that humans should follow. As a member of the human race, the pursuit of the truth should be the life goal of every person, and they should view it as the correct path for people to follow. Now, how should one pursue the truth? Just now, you brought up some simple, theoretical ideas, which most people would probably agree with. Everyone thinks that these kinds of pursuits and practices relate to pursuing the truth. They believe that the things which specifically relate to pursuing the truth are merely: gaining knowledge of oneself, confessing and repenting, and then finding the truth principles to practice from God’s words, and ultimately, living out His words in one’s everyday life and entering into the truth reality. This is the common understanding and comprehension that most people have of how to pursue the truth. Aside from the methods you can recognize and comprehend, I have summarized some more specific paths and methods of practice for pursuing the truth. Today, we will fellowship in more detail on how to pursue the truth.

Aside from the few methods you have listed, I have gone into more detail and summarized two methods for how to pursue the truth. One method is “letting go.” Is this simple? (It is simple.) This is neither abstract nor complicated. It is also easy to remember and easy to understand. Of course, practicing it may involve a certain level of difficulty. You see, this method is much simpler than the ones you brought up. What you said was just a stack of theories. They seem lofty and deep and, of course, there is a concrete side to them, but they are much more complicated than what I just told you. The first method is “letting go,” and the second is “dedicating.” Just these two methods, three words in total. People can understand them just by looking at them, and people know how to practice them without fellowshiping about them—they are also easy to remember. What is the first method? (Letting go.) The second? (Dedicating.) You see? Are they not simple? (They are simple.) They are much more succinct than what you said. What is this called? This is called being incisive. Does using fewer words necessarily mean that something is incisive? (It doesn’t.) Whether or not something is incisive is unimportant. What is crucial is whether the key point is being made and whether it is functional when people put it into practice. Additionally, it is important to look at what results are achieved by practicing it; whether it can resolve people’s practical difficulties; whether it helps people to follow the path of pursuing the truth; whether it allows people to resolve their corrupt dispositions at the source; and whether practicing it helps people to come before God, and accept His words and the truth, thereby achieving the results and goals that the pursuit of the truth is supposed to attain. Is this correct? (It is.) You have now heard these two methods of “letting go” and “dedicating,” and you know them. What is the relationship between these two methods and pursuing the truth? Are they linked to those methods you have mentioned, or do they conflict with them? This is still not very clear, is it? (It is still not very clear.) Generally speaking, the specific methods of practicing the pursuit of the truth are the two that I just discussed. Of these two methods, what is the specific content of the first one: letting go? What is the most simple and direct thing you can think of when you hear the words “letting go”? How does one put this method into practice? What are its specific parts and content? (Letting go of one’s corrupt disposition.) What else, aside from one’s corrupt disposition? (Notions and imaginings.) Notions and imaginings, emotions, one’s will, and one’s preferences. What else? (Satanic philosophies for living, mistaken values and outlooks on life.) (One’s intents and desires.) In short, when people try to think of things they should let go of, aside from various behaviors related to corrupt dispositions, they also think of things that make up people’s thoughts and views. So, there are two major parts: One involves corrupt dispositions and the other involves people’s thoughts and views. Aside from these two, what else can you think of? You are perplexed, are you not? What is the reason for this? The reason is that the things that come to your mind immediately are the topics which, in your everyday life since you began believing in God, you frequently encounter and which people often speak about. But as to the problems that no one mentions, which nevertheless exist in people—you do not know them, you are not aware of them, you could not come up with them, and you have also never seen them as problems to contemplate. This is the reason that you are perplexed. I am discussing this with you because I want you to think over and carefully consider the issue we will be fellowshiping on next, and for it to make a deep impression on you.

Now we will fellowship on the two major things related to how one is to pursue the truth: number one, letting go, and number two, dedicating. Let us start by fellowshiping on the first thing—letting go. This is not simply the letting go of sentiment, worldly philosophies, self-will, desire for blessings, and other such general interpretations. The practice of “letting go” on which I will fellowship today has a more specific designation and requires that people examine and practice it in their daily lives. What is to be mentioned first regarding letting go? The first thing that people must let go of in their pursuit of the truth are the various human emotions. What do you think of when I mention these various emotions? What do these emotions include? (Hotheadedness, willfulness, and passivity.) Is hotheadedness an emotion? (I understand emotions to mean when people do things while performing their duties according to how they feel. They adopt different attitudes toward things depending on whether they feel good or not.) Are these the emotions I have been talking about? Is this how emotions are to be explained? (God, my understanding of emotions is that they mostly include irritability, annoyance, along with the pleasure, anger, sorrow, and joy.) This is an appropriate generalization. So what was mentioned just now about people doing things according to how they feel, is that an emotion? (That is just a manifestation.) It is a kind of manifestation of emotion. Feeling bad, irritable, and downcast—these are all manifestations of emotion, but they are not the definition of emotion at all. So, how should people understand the first thing they need to let go of in the pursuit of the truth—the various emotions? What are people letting go of when they let go of the various emotions? It is to let go of the feelings, thoughts and emotions that arise in various situations and contexts, as well as with various people, events, and things. Some of these emotions become a person’s self-will. And, although some do not become a person’s self-will, they can still often affect that person’s attitude in their actions. So, what do these emotions include? They include, for example, despondency, hatred, anger, irritability, unease, as well as repression, inferiority, and weeping tears of joy—all these can be considered emotions. Are these the concrete manifestations of emotion? (Yes.) Having said this, do you know what an emotion is? Do they have anything to do with the passivity and hotheadedness you mentioned? (No.) They bear no relation. So, what are those things you mentioned? (Corrupt dispositions.) They are a kind of manifestation of corrupt dispositions. Do the emotions I listed just now, the repression, despondency, inferiority, and so on, have anything to do with corrupt dispositions? (The emotions God spoke about just now are unrelated to corrupt dispositions, they do not constitute corrupt dispositions, or else they have not yet reached the level of a corrupt disposition.) So, what are they? They are the pleasure, anger, sorrow, and joy of normal humanity, and they are the emotions that arise and the manifestations that are revealed when people encounter certain situations. Some are perhaps brought about by a corrupt disposition, while others have not reached that level and are not that related to corrupt dispositions, yet these things do indeed exist in the thoughts of people. In such circumstances, regardless of what situation people encounter or what the context is, these emotions will naturally often influence their judgment and views to some degree, and they will influence the position that people ought to take and the path they ought to walk. The various emotions we just spoke about are mostly rather negative. Are there any that are rather neutral, that are not so negative or positive? No, there are none that are relatively positive. Depression, despondency, hatred, anger, inferiority, irritability, unease, and repression—these are all quite negative emotions. Can any of these emotions enable people to positively face life, human existence, and the situations they encounter in life? Are there none that are positive? (No.) They are all relatively negative emotions. So which emotions are somewhat better? How about yearning and missing? (They are rather neutral.) Yes, they can be neutral. What else? Nostalgia, longing and cherishing. What do these emotions we are talking about refer to? They are things which often hide in the depths of the human heart and soul; they can often occupy people’s hearts and thoughts and can often affect people’s feelings and their views and attitudes toward doing things. Therefore, whether these emotions are found in people’s real lives, or in their belief in God and pursuit of the truth, they will, to a greater or lesser extent, interfere with or influence people’s everyday lives and affect their attitudes toward their duties. They will also, of course, affect people’s judgment and the position they take when pursuing the truth, and in particular, these rather passive and negative feelings will have a tremendous impact on people. When people develop memories and begin to sense their own diverse emotions, or start to form an awareness that recognizes events and things, the environment, and other people, their various emotions begin to gradually arise and take shape. Once these have taken shape, then as people get older and experience more worldly matters, these emotions gradually become more and more entrenched inside them, within the depths of their heart, becoming the dominant feature of their individual humanity. They gradually direct their individual personality, their pleasure, anger, sorrow and joy, their predilections, as well as their pursuit of goals and direction in life, and so on. That is why these emotions are indispensable to each and every person. Why do I say this? Because once people begin to have a subjective awareness of the environment surrounding them, these emotions gradually influence their pleasure, anger, sorrow and joy, they influence their judgment and cognition of people, events, and things, and they influence their personality. Of course, they will also influence people’s attitudes and views regarding how they face and handle the people, events, and things around them. Even more importantly, these negative emotions influence the ways and principles governing how people comport themselves, as well as the goals they pursue and their baseline for human comportment. You may feel that what I have said is not that easy to understand, that it may be rather abstract. I will give you an example and you may then understand things a little better. For example, there are some people who, as children, were ordinary-looking, inarticulate, and not very quick-witted, causing others in their families and social environments to give rather unfavorable appraisals of them, saying things like: “This kid is dull-witted, slow, and a clumsy speaker. Look at other people’s children, who are so well-spoken that they can wrap people around their little finger. Whereas this kid just pouts all day long. He doesn’t know what to say when meeting people, doesn’t know how to explain or justify himself after doing something wrong, and can’t amuse people. This kid is an idiot.” The parents say this, relatives and friends say this, and their teachers also say this. This environment exerts a certain, invisible pressure on such individuals. Through experiencing these environments, they unconsciously develop a certain kind of mindset. What kind of mindset? They think that they are not good-looking, not very likable, and that others are never happy to see them. They believe that they are not good at studying, are slow, and always feel embarrassed to open their mouths and speak in front of others. They are too embarrassed to say thank you when people give them something, thinking to themselves, “Why am I always so tongue-tied? Why are other people such smooth talkers? I’m just stupid!” Subconsciously, they think they are worthless, but still are unwilling to acknowledge being that worthless, being that stupid. In their hearts they always ask themselves, “Am I really that stupid? Am I really that unpleasant?” Their parents do not like them, and neither do their brothers and sisters, their teachers or their classmates. And occasionally their family members, their relatives and friends say of them, “He is short, his eyes and nose are small, and with looks like that, he will not be successful when he grows up.” So, when they look in the mirror, they see that their eyes are indeed small. In this situation, the resistance, dissatisfaction, unwillingness, and unacceptance in the depths of their heart turn gradually to acceptance and acknowledgment of their own shortcomings, deficiencies, and issues. Although they can accept this reality, a persistent emotion arises in the depths of their heart. What is this emotion called? It is inferiority. People who feel inferior do not know what their strengths are. They just think that they are unlikable, always feel stupid, and do not know how to deal with things. In short, they feel they cannot do anything, are unattractive, are not clever, and have slow reactions. They are unremarkable compared to others and do not get good grades in their studies. After growing up in such an environment, this mindset of inferiority gradually takes over. It turns into a kind of lingering emotion that becomes tangled with your heart and fills your mind. Regardless of whether you are already grown, have gone out into the world, are married and established in your career, and regardless of your social status, this feeling of inferiority that was planted in your environment growing up is impossible to get rid of. Even after you start believing in God and join the church, you still think that you have average looks, have poor intellectual caliber, are inarticulate, and cannot do anything. You think, “I’ll just do what I can. I don’t need to aspire to be a leader, I don’t need to pursue profound truths, I’ll just be content with being the least significant one, and let others treat me however they like.” When antichrists and false leaders appear, you feel unable to discern or expose them, that you are not cut out for doing that. You feel that as long as you yourself are not a false leader or antichrist then that is enough, that as long as you do not cause disruptions and disturbances then that is fine, and that it is enough so long as you can stand in your own position. In the depths of your heart, you feel that you are not good enough and are not as good as other people, that others are perhaps objects for salvation, and that you, at best, are a service-doer, and so you feel you are not up to the task of pursuing the truth. Irrespective of how much truth you are able to understand, you still feel that, seeing as God has predestined you to have the kind of caliber you do and to look the way you do, then perhaps He has predestined you to be merely a service-doer, and that you have nothing to do with pursuing the truth, becoming a leader, becoming someone in a position of responsibility, or being saved; instead, you are willing to be the most insignificant person. This feeling of inferiority is perhaps not inborn in you, but on another level, because of your family environment and the environment you grew up in, you were subjected to moderate blows or improper judgments, and this caused the feeling of inferiority to arise in you. This emotion affects the correct direction of your pursuits, influences the proper aspiration for your pursuits, and it also inhibits your proper pursuits. Once your proper pursuit and the proper determination you should have in your humanity are inhibited, then your motivation to pursue positive things and to pursue the truth is stifled. This stifling is not brought about by your surrounding environment or by any person, and of course God has not determined that you should suffer it, rather it is brought about by a strongly negative emotion deep in your heart. Is this not the case? (It is.)

On the surface, inferiority is an emotion that manifests in people; but in fact, the root cause of it is this society, mankind, and the environment people live in. It is also brought about by people’s own objective reasons. It goes without saying that society and mankind come from Satan, because all of mankind lies under the power of the evil one, deeply corrupted by Satan, and no one can possibly teach the next generation in accordance with the truth or with the teachings of God, but rather does so in accordance with the things that come from Satan. Therefore, the consequence of teaching the next generation and mankind the things of Satan, besides corrupting the dispositions and essence of people, is that it causes negative emotions to arise in people. If the negative emotions that arise are temporary, then they will not have a tremendous effect on a person’s life. However, if a negative emotion becomes deeply rooted within the innermost heart and soul of a person and it becomes indelibly stuck there, if they are completely unable to forget about it or get rid of it, then it will necessarily affect that person’s every decision, the way they approach all manner of people, events, and things, what they choose when faced with major matters of principle, and the path they will walk in their life—this is the effect real human society has on every single person. The other aspect is people’s own objective reasons. That is, the education and teachings people receive as they grow up, all the thoughts and ideas along with the ways to comport oneself that they accept, as well as the various human sayings, all come from Satan, to the point where people have no ability to handle and dispel these issues they encounter from the correct perspective and standpoint. Therefore, unknowingly under the influence of this harsh environment, and being oppressed and controlled by it, man can do nothing but develop various negative emotions and use them to try to resist problems they have no ability to resolve, change, or dispel. Let us take the feeling of inferiority as an example. Your parents, teachers, your elders, and others around you all have an unrealistic assessment of your caliber, humanity, and personality, and ultimately what this does to you is attack you, persecute you, stifle you, restrain you, and bind you. Finally, when you do not have the strength to resist anymore, you have no choice but to choose a life of silently accepting insults and humiliation, silently accepting, against your better judgment, this kind of unfair and unjust reality. When you accept this reality, the emotions that ultimately arise in you are not happy, satisfied, positive or progressive ones; you do not live with more motivation and direction, much less do you pursue the accurate and correct goals for human life, but rather a profound feeling of inferiority arises in you. When this emotion arises in you, you feel you have nowhere to turn. When you encounter an issue that requires you to express a view, you will consider what you want to say and the view you wish to express in your innermost heart who knows how many times, yet you still cannot bring yourself to speak it out loud. When someone expresses the same view that you hold, you allow yourself to feel an affirmation in your heart, confirmation that you are not worse than other people. But when the same situation happens again, you still say to yourself, “I can’t speak casually, do anything rash, or make myself a laughingstock. I’m no good, I’m stupid, I’m foolish, I’m an idiot. I need to learn how to hide and just listen, not speak.” From this we can see that, from the point when the feeling of inferiority arises to when it becomes deeply entrenched within a person’s innermost heart, are they not then deprived of their free will and of the legitimate rights bestowed upon them by God? (Yes.) They have been deprived of these things. Who exactly has deprived them of these things? You cannot say for sure, right? None of you can say for sure. This is because, throughout this whole process, you are not only the victim but also the perpetrator—you are the victim of other people, and you are also the victim of yourself. Why is that? I said just now that one reason for the inferiority that arises in you comes from your own objective reasons. Since you began to have self-awareness, your basis for judging events and things has had its source in the corruption of Satan, and these views are instilled in you by society and mankind and are not taught to you by God. Therefore, regardless of when or in what context your feelings of inferiority arose, and regardless of the extent to which your feelings of inferiority have developed, you are helplessly bound and controlled by these feelings, and you use these ways instilled in you by Satan in your approach to the people, events, and things around you. When feelings of inferiority are implanted deeply in your heart, they not only have a profound effect on you, they also dominate your views on people and things, and your comportment and actions. So, how do those who are dominated by feelings of inferiority perceive people and things? They regard other people as better than themselves, and they also view antichrists as being better than themselves. Even though antichrists have evil dispositions and are of poor humanity, they still treat them as people to emulate and role models to learn from. They even say to themselves, “Look, although they have a bad disposition and evil humanity, they are gifted and are more capable in work than me. They can comfortably display their abilities in front of others and speak in front of so many people without blushing or having heart palpitations. They’ve really got guts. I can’t match up to them. I’m just not brave enough.” What brought this on? It must be said that part of the reason is that your feelings of inferiority have affected your judgment of people’s essences, as well as your perspective and standpoint when it comes to viewing other people. Is this not the case? (It is.) So how do feelings of inferiority affect how you comport yourself? You tell yourself: “I was born stupid, with no gifts or strengths, and I am slow to learn everything. Look at that person: Although they sometimes cause disruptions and disturbances, and act arbitrarily and recklessly, at least they are gifted and have strengths. Wherever you go, they’re the kind of person that people want to make use of, and I’m not.” Whenever anything happens, the first thing you do is pass a verdict on yourself and close yourself off. Whatever the issue is, you retreat and avoid taking initiative, and you fear taking on responsibility. You tell yourself, “I was born stupid. No matter where I go, no one likes me. I can’t stick my neck out, I mustn’t show off my minuscule abilities. If someone recommends me, that proves that I’m alright. But if no one recommends me, then it wouldn’t do for me to take the initiative to say that I can take on the job and do it well. If I’m not confident about it, I can’t say that I am—what if I mess it up, what would I do then? What if I got pruned? I’d be so ashamed! Wouldn’t that be humiliating? I can’t let that happen to me.” Take a look—has it not affected your comportment? To a certain extent, your attitude toward how you comport yourself is influenced and controlled by your feelings of inferiority. To a certain extent, it can be called a consequence of your feelings of inferiority.

Under the influence of this feeling of inferiority, how does it affect how you regard the various kinds of people, whether they are people with humanity, with so-so humanity, or with no humanity or evil humanity? None of your views on people is in accord with the truth or with God’s words, much less do they meet God’s requirements. At the same time, under the influence of this feeling of inferiority, you choose to conduct yourself carefully, cautiously and timidly, and most of the time you are passive and dejected. You have no get-up-and-go determination or motivation, and when you do have some positive and active inclination and wish to take on a little work, you think, “Is this not me being arrogant? Am I not pushing myself forward? Am I not flaunting myself? Am I not showing off? Is this not my desire for status?” You cannot figure out what exactly is the nature of your own actions. The legitimate needs, aspirations, determination and desires of humanity, as well as that which you can strive to achieve, that which is proper and that which you ought to be doing, you will turn these things over many times and ponder them many times in your heart. When you are unable to sleep at night, you will contemplate over and over again, “Should I take on that work? Oh, but I’m not good enough, I dare not do it. I’m stupid and dumb. I don’t have the gifts that person has, nor the caliber!” When you are eating, you think, “They eat three meals a day and perform their duty well, and their life has value. I eat three meals a day but do not perform my duty well, and my life has no value whatsoever. I’m indebted to God, and to my brothers and sisters! I don’t deserve and shouldn’t eat even one plate of food.” When someone is too cowardly, they are worthless, and they are not able to accomplish anything. No matter what happens to them, when cowardly people meet with some difficulty, they shrink back. Why do they do this? One reason is that this is caused by their feeling of inferiority. Because they feel inferior, they do not dare to go before people, they cannot even take on the obligations and responsibilities they ought to take on, nor can they take on what they are actually capable of achieving within the scope of their own ability and caliber, and within the scope of the experience of their own humanity. This feeling of inferiority affects every aspect of their humanity, it affects their personality and, of course, it also affects their character. When around other people, they seldom express their own views, and you hardly ever hear them clarify their own standpoint or opinion. When they encounter an issue, they dare not speak, but instead constantly shrink back and retreat. When there are few people there, they feel brave enough to sit among them, but when there are a lot of people there, they look for a corner and head for where the lighting is dim, not daring to come among other people. Whenever they feel they would like to positively and actively say something and express their own views and opinions to show that what they think is right, they do not even have the courage to do that. Whenever they have such ideas, their feeling of inferiority comes pouring out all at once, and it controls them, stifles them, telling them, “Don’t say anything, you’re no good. Don’t express your views, just keep your ideas to yourself. If there is anything in your heart you really want to say, just make a note of it on the computer and ruminate on it by yourself. You must not let anyone else know about it. What if you said something wrong? It would be so embarrassing!” This voice keeps telling you not to do this, not to do that, not to say this, not to say that, causing you to swallow back down every word you wish to say. When there is something you want to say that you have turned over in your heart for a long time, you beat a retreat and dare not say it, or else you feel embarrassed to say it, believing that you ought not to do it, and if you do it then you feel as though you have broken some rule or violated the law. And when one day you do actively express your own view, deep inside you feel incomparably perturbed and uneasy. Even though this feeling of great unease gradually fades, your feeling of inferiority slowly smothers the ideas, intentions and plans you have for wanting to speak, wanting to express your own views, wanting to be a normal person, and wanting to be just like everyone else. Those who don’t understand you believe you are a person of few words, quiet, shy of character, someone who does not like to stand out from the crowd. When you speak in front of lots of other people, you feel embarrassed and your face turns red; you are somewhat introverted, and only you, in actuality, know that you feel inferior. Your heart is filled with this feeling of inferiority and this feeling has been around for a long time, it is not some temporary feeling. Rather, it tightly controls your thoughts from deep inside your soul, it tightly seals your lips, and so regardless of how correctly you understand things, or what views and opinions you have toward people, events and things, you dare only to think and turn things over in your own heart, never daring to speak out loud. Whether other people might approve of what you say, or correct and criticize you, you will not dare to face or see such an outcome. Why is this? It is because your feeling of inferiority is inside you, telling you, “Don’t do that, you’re just not up to it. You don’t have that kind of caliber, you don’t have that kind of reality, you shouldn’t do that, that’s just not you. Don’t do anything or think anything now. You’ll only be the real you by living in inferiority. You’re not qualified to pursue the truth or to open up your heart and say what you want and connect with others like other people do. And it’s because you’re no good, you’re not as good as they are.” This feeling of inferiority guides people’s thinking inside their minds; it inhibits them from fulfilling the obligations a normal person should perform and from living the life of normal humanity they should be living, while it also directs the ways and means, and the direction and goals of how they regard people and things, how they comport themselves and act. Even if they believe they should be an honest person and they enjoy being an honest person, yet they never dare to express their desire to be an honest person in words or deeds in order to enter into the life of being an honest person. Because of their feeling of inferiority, they do not even dare to be an honest person—they are totally devoid of courage. When they do say something honest, they hurriedly look at the people around them, and think, “Is anyone forming an opinion of me? Will they think, ‘Are you trying to be an honest person? Don’t you just want to be an honest person so you can be saved? Isn’t this just the desire to be blessed?’ Oh no, I don’t dare say anything. They can all speak honestly, it’s just me who can’t. I’m not qualified like they are, I’m on the lowest rung.” We can see from these specific manifestations and revelations that once this one negative emotion—the feeling of inferiority—begins to take effect and has laid down roots in people’s innermost hearts, then unless they pursue the truth it will be very difficult for them to uproot it and break away from its control, and they will be controlled by it in everything they do. Even though this feeling cannot be said to be a corrupt disposition, it has already caused a severely negative effect; it severely harms their humanity and has a great negative impact on the various emotions and the speech and actions of their normal humanity, with very serious consequences. Its minor influence is to affect their character, their predilections and their aspirations; its major influence is to affect their objectives and direction in life. From the causes of this feeling of inferiority, from its process and from the consequences it brings to a person, from whichever aspect you look at it, is it not something that people should let go? (Yes.) Some people say, “I don’t think I’m inferior and I’m not under any kind of control. No one has ever provoked me or belittled me, nor has anyone ever stifled me. I live very freely, so doesn’t that mean that I do not have this feeling of inferiority?” Is that correct? (No, sometimes we still have that feeling of inferiority.) You may still have it, to a greater or lesser extent. It may not dominate your innermost heart, but in some scenarios it can arise in a moment. For example, you bump into someone you idolize, someone much more talented than you, someone with more special skills and gifts than you, someone more domineering than you, someone more overbearing than you, someone more wicked than you, someone taller and more attractive than you, someone with status in society, someone rich, someone with more education and with higher status than you, someone who is older and has believed in God for longer, someone with more experience and reality in their belief in God, and then you cannot stop your feeling of inferiority from arising. When this feeling arises, your “living very freely” vanishes, you become timid and you lose your nerve, you ponder how to phrase your words, your facial expression becomes unnatural, you feel restrained in your words and movements, and you begin to package yourself. These and other manifestations happen because of the arising of your feeling of inferiority. Of course, this feeling of inferiority is momentary, and when this feeling arises, you just need to examine yourself, be discerning, and not be controlled by it.

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