121. The Principles of Living Out Normal Humanity
(1) It is necessary to discern the difference between normal humanity and expressions of corruption, and to learn to use the truth to amend each sort of expression of corruption. Only thus can one live out normal humanity;
(2) It is necessary to train oneself at all times to be an honest person, and to speak and act truly, rather than engaging in trickery and disguising oneself. Learn to practice the truth and to act according to the principles;
(3) Interact lovingly with others. Be capable of tolerance and patience, and of understanding and respect. Help and support each other. Do not be overly critical of others, but treat them fairly;
(4) It is necessary to seek the truth in all matters. Only thus can one forsake the flesh and practice the truth. More than that, one should persevere in their quest to love and submit to God, and perform their duty well and faithfully.
Relevant Words of God:
God created humans and placed them upon earth, and He has led them ever since. He then saved them and served as a sin offering for humanity. At the end, He still must conquer humanity, save humans entirely, and restore them to their original likeness. This is the work that He has been engaged in ever since the beginning—restoring humanity to their original image and likeness. God will establish His kingdom and restore the original likeness of human beings, which means that God will restore His authority upon earth and among all creation. Humanity lost their God-fearing heart as well as the function incumbent upon God’s creatures after being corrupted by Satan, thereby becoming an enemy disobedient to God. Humanity then lived under Satan’s domain and followed Satan’s orders; thus, God had no way to work among His creatures, and became all the more unable to win their fearful reverence. Humans were created by God, and ought to worship God, but they actually turned their backs on Him and worshiped Satan instead. Satan became the idol in their hearts. Thus, God lost His standing in their hearts, which is to say that He lost the meaning behind His creation of humanity. Therefore, to restore the meaning behind His creation of humanity, He must restore their original likeness and rid humanity of their corrupt dispositions. To reclaim humans from Satan, He must save them from sin. Only in this way can God gradually restore their original likeness and function, and finally, restore His kingdom.
Excerpted from “God and Man Will Enter Into Rest Together” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
The source of man’s opposition and rebelliousness against God is his corruption by Satan. Because of Satan’s corruption, man’s conscience has grown numb; he is immoral, his thoughts are degenerate, and he has a backward mental outlook. Before he was corrupted by Satan, man naturally followed God and obeyed His words after hearing them. He was naturally of sound sense and conscience, and of normal humanity. After being corrupted by Satan, man’s original sense, conscience, and humanity grew dull and were impaired by Satan. Thus, he has lost his obedience and love toward God. Man’s sense has become aberrant, his disposition has become the same as that of an animal, and his rebelliousness toward God is ever more frequent and grievous. Yet man still neither knows nor recognizes this, and merely opposes and rebels blindly. Man’s disposition is revealed in expressions of his sense, insight, and conscience; because his sense and insight are unsound, and his conscience has grown supremely dull, thus his disposition is rebellious against God. If man’s sense and insight cannot change, then changes in his disposition are out of the question, as is conforming to God’s will. If man’s sense is unsound, then he cannot serve God and is unfit for use by God. “Normal sense” refers to obeying and being faithful to God, to yearning for God, to being absolute toward God, and to having a conscience toward God. It refers to being of one heart and mind toward God, and not deliberately opposing God. Having an aberrant sense is not like this. Since man was corrupted by Satan, he has come up with notions about God, and he has had no loyalty to God or yearning for Him, to say nothing of a conscience toward God. Man deliberately opposes God and passes judgments on Him, and, furthermore, hurls invective at Him behind His back. Man passes judgment on God behind His back, with clear knowledge that He is God; man has no intention of obeying God, and merely makes blind demands and requests of Him. Such people—people who have aberrant sense—are incapable of knowing their own despicable behavior or of regretting their rebelliousness. If people are capable of knowing themselves, then they have regained a little of their sense; the more rebellious against God people who cannot yet know themselves are, the less are they sound of sense.
Excerpted from “To Have an Unchanged Disposition Is to Be in Enmity to God” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
What aspects does normal humanity include? Insight, sense, conscience, and character. If you can achieve normality in each of these aspects, your humanity will be up to par. You should have the likeness of a normal human being, you should resemble a believer in God. You do not have to achieve too much, or get involved in diplomacy; you just have to be a normal human being, with a normal person’s sense, to be able to see through things, and at least look like a normal human being. That will be enough. Everything required of you today is within your capabilities; this is not a case of trying to shoo a duck onto a perch. No useless words or useless work will be performed upon you. All the ugliness expressed or revealed in your life must be gotten rid of. You have been corrupted by Satan and brim with Satan’s venom. All that is asked of you is to get rid of this corrupt satanic disposition. You are not being asked to become some high-ranking figure, or a famous or great person. There is no point in that. The work that is done in you takes into account what is inherent in you. What I ask of people is defined within limits. If you practiced in the way and tone in which intellectuals speak, this would not do; you would not be able to do it. Given your caliber, you should at least be able to speak with wisdom and tact and explain things in a clear and comprehensible manner. That is all it takes to meet the requirements. If, at the very least, you gain insight and sense, then that will do. What is most important right now is casting off your corrupt satanic disposition. You must cast off the ugliness that is manifested in you. How can you talk about supreme sense and supreme insight, if you do not cast these off? Many people, seeing that the age has changed, lack any humility or patience, and they might as well not have any love or saintly decorum, either. How absurd such people are! Do they have even an ounce of normal humanity? Do they have any testimony to speak of? They are utterly without insight or sense. Of course, some aspects of people’s practice that are deviant and erroneous need to be corrected; their former rigid spiritual lives and their benumbed and imbecilic appearance, for example—all of these have to be changed. Change does not mean letting you become dissolute or indulge in the flesh, saying whatever you want. You must not talk loosely. To have the speech and comportment of a normal human being is to speak coherently, saying “yes” when you mean “yes,” and “no” when you mean “no.” Stick to the facts and speak appropriately. Do not cheat, do not lie. The limits that a normal person can reach regarding a change of disposition must be understood. If not, you will not be able to enter into reality.
Excerpted from “Raising Caliber Is for the Sake of Receiving God’s Salvation” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
In the dispositions of normal people there is no crookedness or deceitfulness, people have a normal relationship with each other, they do not stand alone, and their lives are neither mediocre nor decadent. So, too, is God exalted among all; His words permeate among man, people live in peace with one another and under the care and protection of God, the earth is filled with harmony, without the interference of Satan, and the glory of God holds the utmost importance among man. Such people are like angels: pure, vibrant, never complaining about God, and devoting all their efforts solely to God’s glory on earth.
Excerpted from “Chapter 16” of Interpretations of the Mysteries of God’s Words to the Entire Universe in The Word Appears in the Flesh
You ought to know that God likes those who are honest. In essence, God is faithful, and so His words can always be trusted; His actions, furthermore, are faultless and unquestionable, which is why God likes those who are absolutely honest with Him. Honesty means giving your heart to God, being genuine with God in all things, being open with Him in all things, never hiding the facts, not trying to deceive those above and below you, and not doing things only to curry favor with God. In short, to be honest is to be pure in your actions and words, and to deceive neither God nor man. … If your words are riddled with excuses and valueless justifications, then I say that you are someone who is loath to put the truth into practice. If you have many confidences that you are reluctant to share, if you are highly averse to laying bare your secrets—your difficulties—before others to seek the way of the light, then I say that you are someone who will not attain salvation easily, and who will not easily emerge from the darkness. If seeking the way of the truth pleases you well, then you are someone who dwells always in the light. If you are very glad to be a service-doer in the house of God, working diligently and conscientiously in obscurity, always giving and never taking, then I say that you are a loyal saint, because you seek no reward and are simply being an honest person. If you are willing to be candid, if you are willing to expend your all, if you are able to sacrifice your life for God and stand firm in your testimony, if you are honest to the point where you know only to satisfy God and not to consider yourself or take for yourself, then I say that such people are those who are nourished in the light and who shall live forever in the kingdom.
Excerpted from “Three Admonitions” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
People do not make high demands of themselves, but they make high demands of God. They ask Him to show them special kindness, and to be patient and forbearing toward them, cherish them, provide for them, and even smile at them, be tolerant toward them, make allowances for them, and take care of them in multiple ways. They expect Him not to be strict with them at all or do anything that would upset them even slightly, and are only satisfied if He sweet-talks them every single day. Humans are so lacking in sense! They are not clear on what they should do, what they should accomplish, what viewpoints they should have, what position they should stand in to serve God, and what position is suitable to place themselves in. People with a little bit of status have a very high opinion of themselves, yet those without status also think quite highly of themselves. Humans never know themselves. You must come to a point in your belief in God where, regardless of how He speaks to you, how strict He is with you, and how much He might ignore you, you can keep on believing without complaint and continue to fulfill your duty as usual. You will then be a mature and experienced person, and you will truly have some stature and a bit of the sense of a normal person. You will not make demands of God, you will no longer have extravagant desires, and you will no longer make requests of others or of God based on your own likes and dislikes. This will show that to a certain extent, you possess the likeness of a human.
Excerpted from “People Who Make Constant Demands of God Are the Least Reasonable People” in Records of Christ’s Talks
Whenever one reveals a corrupt disposition or corrupt thoughts and ideas, it is no small matter. If you do not seek the truth to resolve them, it will be impossible to cleanse these corruptions. If, on the other hand, you can seek the truth rationally, then you will easily discern the root cause of your mistake and resolve the issue of your expressions of corruption. As you grow more able to withdraw into your spirit to wait and seek, it will be easy to find relevant passages of God’s words with which to discern the essence of the problem. By doing so, you will reveal your corruption less and less, and your rationality will grow more normal—and the more normal one’s rationality, the more they act within the boundaries, no longer speaking or acting based on their notions and imaginings. What does it mean to “act within the boundaries”? It means to act in a way that is in keeping with the standards of normal humanity, with one’s conscience, with the standards of God’s requirements, and with the truth principles. If, as soon as you are stirred to act, you do not think deeply, but wave your hands and say, “Just do it like that. It’ll be fine!” then are you acting with the good sense of normal humanity? Is there an expression of normal humanity in this? These are expressions that normal humanity should be without. Therefore, no matter what issue befalls you, you must first calm down and contemplate it, come before God, withdraw into your spirit, and become quiet—first seek from God how this matter should be done and how it should be discussed. Does this require a lot of time? No, it does not. Normal humanity contains these rational things, and people are able to restrain themselves and achieve them; whether they do simply depends on whether they are willing to practice in this way. If you wish always to show yourself off, always to stand on high, to parade yourself, to become an idol in others’ hearts and to establish your own image there, then you will always act rashly; you will never be able to come before God or withdraw into your spirit. If you always want to do things your own way, and if, having done so, you always think you have done something of great importance or accomplished some great undertaking, and that you are very talented and unlike ordinary people, then this means you are not walking the right path. Your heart must be quiet at all times, and when you encounter an issue, you must not become irritable and stubborn or act rashly. Do not be pretentious or false, but learn to be quiet, and act reasonably. These are the ways in which normal humanity should be manifested.
Excerpted from “The Path to Resolving a Corrupt Disposition” in Records of Christ’s Talks
When a person does not understand the truth, how great a role his conscience can play depends on what his humanity is like. If this person does not understand the truth and does not act according to his conscience, and you can neither see any aspect of his actions that shows any consideration for God’s intentions nor shows any reverence for God in him, then can this person be counted as possessing a conscience and humanity? What kind of person is this? This sort of person is precisely defined as someone without humanity who has fallen below the minimum standard of human conduct. He has no conscience, and he does things neither based in reason nor according to conscience. Some people do not understand many truths; they do not know what the right thing is to do when they encounter problems, and they have not mastered principles. What is to be done, then? The lowest standard they should meet is to act according to conscience. How should one act according to conscience? The particulars are that, when a person acts, he must do so relying on a true heart, and be worthy of God’s having given us this life, and worthy of this God-given opportunity to attain salvation. Once you have met this bare minimum of standards, you will have obtained protection; you will not then so easily do things to disobey God or shirk your responsibilities, nor will you be so liable to act in a perfunctory manner. You will also not be so prone to scheming for your own position, fame, fortune, and future. This is the role that conscience plays. The most fundamental and important components of one’s humanity are conscience and reason. What kind of person is one who lacks conscience and does not have the reason of normal humanity? Generally speaking, he is a person who lacks humanity, a person of bad humanity.
Excerpted from “Give Your True Heart to God, and You Can Obtain the Truth” in Records of Christ’s Talks
If you have yet to find the feeling and the principles of being a saint, this proves that your life entry is too shallow, and that you have not yet understood the truth. In your conduct and the environment in which you live each day, this requires you to savor and to ponder, to fellowship with each other, to encourage each other, to keep each other alert, to help and care for each other, and to support and provide for each other. Do not always focus on others’ faults, but reflect on yourself frequently, and be proactive afterward in admitting to another what you have done that constitutes interference or harm to them. Learn to open yourself up and fellowship, and often discuss together how to fellowship practically on the basis of God’s words. When the environment of your lives is frequently thus, relationships among the brothers and sisters become normal—not complicated, indifferent, cold, or cruel like relationships between unbelievers. You will slowly divest yourselves of such relationships. Brothers and sisters become closer and more intimate with each other; you are able to support one another, and to love each other; there is goodwill in your hearts, or you have a mentality with which you are capable of tolerance and compassion toward each other, and you support and care for each other, rather than a state and attitude in which you fight with each other, trample over one another, are jealous of each other, engage in secret competition, harbor hidden scorn or contempt for each other, or in which none obeys another. Living in such states or circumstances creates terrible relationships between people. It not only creates all sorts of negative influences on you and causes you harm, but also negatively influences and harms others to varying degrees. It is very difficult, in general, for people to overcome this—you get angry when people look at you the wrong way, or when they say something that is out of line with your will, and when someone does something that stops you from getting a look-in, you resent them, and feel uncomfortable and unhappy, and can think only of how to restore your reputation. Women and young people are particularly incapable of overcoming this. They are always ensnared in these petty dispositions, these tantrums, these petty emotions, and it is difficult for them to come before God. Entangled in these complex, weblike relationships, entwined in them, it is difficult for people to quiet themselves before God, and quiet themselves in God’s words. Therefore, you must first learn how to get along well with your brothers and sisters. You must be tolerant of each other, lenient with each other, be able to see what is exceptional about one another, what each other’s strengths are—and you must learn to accept others’ opinions, and to retreat deep into yourself to engage in self-reflection and gain self-knowledge. You must not indulge yourself, or give free rein to your ambitions, desires, or your merest strengths, forcing others to listen to you, to do as you say, to think highly of you, and to raise you on high, yet be oblivious to the strengths of others while exaggerating and magnifying their shortcomings without restraint, at all turns publicizing, belittling and despising their shortcomings, or using words and others means to hurt and aggravate others, such that you will have made them obey you, heed you, fear you, and hide from you. Would you want to see such a relationship between people come about or exist? Would you want to feel what it is like?
Excerpted from “The Most Fundamental Principle for the Practice of Entering Truth Reality” in Records of Christ’s Talks
In order to restore the likeness of a normal person, that is, to achieve normal humanity, people cannot merely please God with their words. They only harm themselves in doing so, and it does not benefit their entry or transformation. Therefore, to attain transformation, people must practice little by little. They must enter slowly, seek and explore bit by bit, enter in from the positive, and live a practical life of truth; a life of a saint. Thereafter, real things, real events, and real environments allow people to have practical training. People are not required to pay any lip service; instead, they are to train in real environments. People first come to realize that they are of poor caliber, and then they eat and drink of God’s words normally, and enter into and practice normally as well; only in this way can they obtain reality, and this is how entry may occur even more rapidly. In order to transform people, there must be some practicality; they must practice with real things, real events, and real environments. Can one achieve true training by relying on church life alone? Could people enter into reality this way? No! If people are unable to enter into real life, then they are unable to transform their old lifestyle and ways of doing things. This is not entirely due to people’s laziness and high level of dependency, but rather it is because people simply do not have the capacity for living, and, moreover, they have no understanding of God’s standard of the likeness of a normal person. In the past, people were always talking, speaking, communicating—and they even became “orators”—yet none of them sought transformation in their life disposition; instead, they blindly sought profound theories. Thus, people of today must change this religious style of belief in God in their lives. They must enter into practice by focusing on one event, one thing, one person. They must do it with focus—only then can they attain results. People’s transformation begins with a change in their essence. The work must be aimed at people’s essence, their life, and at their laziness, dependency, and slavishness—only in this way can they be transformed.
… Without practical matters, people can only gain a theoretical and intellectual understanding—this is not an effective way to transform. So how does one acquire wisdom and insight through training? Can people acquire wisdom and insight simply from listening, reading, and advancing their knowledge? How could this be so? People must understand and experience in real life! Therefore, one must train, and one must not depart from real life. People must pay attention to different aspects and have entry in various aspects: level of education, expressiveness, the ability to see things, discernment, the ability to understand God’s words, the common sense and rules of humanity, and other things relating to humanity that people must be equipped with. After understanding has been attained, people must focus on entry, and only then can transformation be attained. If someone has attained understanding, yet they neglect practice, how can transformation occur? Presently, people understand much, but they do not live out reality; thus, they possess little essential understanding of God’s words. You have only been marginally enlightened; you have received a little illumination from the Holy Spirit, yet you have no entry into real life—or you might not even care about entry—thus your transformation is lessened. After such a long time, people understand a lot. They are able to talk a lot about their knowledge of theories, but their external disposition remains the same, and their original caliber remains as it was, not advancing in the slightest. If this is the case, when will you finally enter in?
Excerpted from “Discussing Church Life and Real Life” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
People who have the truth are those who, in their real experiences, can stand firm in their testimony, stand firm in their position, stand on the side of God, without ever retreating, and who can have a normal relationship with people who love God, who, when things happen to them, are able to completely obey God, and can obey God unto death. Your practice and revelations in real life are the testimony of God, they are man’s living out and the testimony of God, and this is truly enjoying God’s love; when you have experienced to this point, the due effect will have been achieved. You are possessed of actual living out and your every action is looked upon with admiration by others. Your clothing and outward appearance are unremarkable, but you live out a life of the utmost piety, and when you communicate the words of God, you are guided and enlightened by Him. You are able to speak God’s will through your words, communicate reality, and you understand much about serving in spirit. You are candid in your speech, you are decent and upright, non-confrontational and decorous, able to obey God’s arrangements and stand firm in your testimony when things befall you, and you are calm and composed no matter what you are dealing with. This kind of person has truly seen God’s love. Some people are still young, but they act as someone of middle age; they are mature, possessed of the truth, and admired by others—and these are the people who have testimony and are the manifestation of God. Which is to say, when they have experienced to a certain point, inside they will have an insight toward God, and their external disposition will also stabilize.
Excerpted from “Those Who Love God Will Forever Live Within His Light” in The Word Appears in the Flesh
When people experience until the day their outlook on life and the meaning, the basis of their existence have entirely changed, when they have been altered to their very bones and have become someone else, is this not incredible? This is a great change, an earth-shattering change. Only when you become disinterested in the fame and fortune, status, money, pleasure, power and glory of the world, and can easily forgo them, will you have the likeness of a human being. Those who will ultimately be made complete are a group such as this; they live for the truth, live for God, and live for that which is just. This is the likeness of a true human being.
Excerpted from “One Must Understand That There Are Similarities and Differences Among People’s Natures” in Records of Christ’s Talks