Only Resolving One's Corrupt Disposition Can Bring About True Transformation (Part One)

Right now, you are all doing your duty quite energetically, and you are able to handle a bit of suffering; so when it comes to life entry, do you have a path forward? Do you gain new enlightenment or see new light? Life entry is a critical matter for those who believe in God, as is doing one’s duty; but to be able to do your duty well, to be up to an acceptable standard, to do your duty loyally—what is the way to achieve these things? (Pursuing the truth.) That’s right, you have to pursue the truth. What is the way to pursue the truth? You must read more of God’s words; only God’s words are the truth. You must put God’s words into practice and experience them more often to obtain the truth, and only then can you understand the truth. So in order to understand the truth, must you not put forth effort toward God’s words? Some people say: “In these years I have believed in God, I have read more than a few of God’s words and truly understood some of the truth, but when unusual things happen to me, I cannot find the path and do not know how to practice the truth; how can I not make use of the things I understand and talk about? At this time, I realize that all I know are words and doctrines, and I do not know how to practice the truth when things happen to me. I am so poor and pitiful.” Some people usually let out an unceasing torrent of words when they fellowship, and are even able to recite some of God’s words from memory, so they think that they understand the truth, that they are spiritual, and that they have some of the truth reality; but when something that is not in line with their wishes happens to them one day, they will start to have notions about God. At times, they might even complain about Him. Their corrupt dispositions will be revealed, and no matter how they pray, they will not be able to solve their problems. When other people fellowship about the truth with them, they say: “I understand this doctrine better than you. When it comes to understanding the truth, I understand more than you; when it comes to preaching doctrine, I know how to speak better than you; when it comes to listening to sermons, I have listened to more than you; when it comes to putting in effort, I put in more than you; when it comes to believing in God, I have believed longer than you. Do not try to teach me; I understand everything.” They think that they understand everything, but when their ambitions and desires come into play and they are controlled by their corrupt dispositions, they do not know what to do. The spiritual doctrines they usually spout off about are unable to resolve their difficulties. Is their stature actually great or is it small? They think that they understand the truth, so why can they not resolve their present difficulties? What is going on here? Do you not often run into these kinds of problems? This is a common difficulty believers run into when it comes to life entry, and it is man’s greatest difficulty. Before something happens to you, you might think that you have already believed in God for a while, that you have a certain stature and foundation, and when things happen to other people, you are able to see through them a bit. You are even able to suffer quite a bit as you do your duty, are able to pay a great price, and are able to overcome many of your own difficulties, such as physical illness, flaws, and deficiencies; but the most difficult matter to resolve is that of the various corrupt dispositions that people often reveal. “Corrupt disposition” is a term people are familiar with, but not everyone is clear on what exactly a corrupt disposition is, which revelations constitute a corrupt disposition, and which thoughts and actions are the products of a corrupt disposition. If people do not understand or comprehend what a corrupt disposition is, or which actions are the revelations of a corrupt disposition, then might someone not think that even if they live according to a corrupt disposition, they are practicing the truth as long as they do not sin? Do you have such a state? (We do.) If you do not understand or comprehend what a corrupt disposition is at all, then are you able to know yourself? Are you able to comprehend your own corrupt nature? Certainly not. If you do not know what a corrupt disposition is, then can you know how to act to put the truth into practice, which actions are right, and which are wrong? Certainly not. So, people who do not know themselves will not have life entry.

The path of life entry touches on many states. You probably all know this word, “state,” but what does it refer to? How do you understand it? (A state is the viewpoints and thoughts that pour out of a person when things happen to them; it can influence and control their speech, conduct, and choices. All these things are a state.) That’s close. Who else wants to say something? (A state means that a person is living in a negative, and quite abnormal state because they are being dominated by some kind of corrupt disposition, in a particular period of time, or in a particular matter—for example, when they are severely pruned, or when they face some difficulties.) (Recently, when I had some results as I did my duty, I was in a kind of self-satisfied, complacent state. I thought that I had changed, that I had the truth reality, and that I would certainly be approved of by God; in fact, according to God’s requirements, I was still far off. Only now do I understand that this was a kind of arrogant, conceited state.) The states you have discussed are all negative, so are there correct, positive states? (Yes. For example, when I want to satisfy God with all my might, I am able to rebel against my flesh and practice the truth: That kind of state is positive.) So far, you have only described some states without actually defining what a state is. So now, let us summarize what a state actually is based on what you have all said. What does “state” actually refer to? It is a kind of viewpoint people have or condition people are in when things happen to them, as well as the thoughts, moods, and standpoints this condition gives rise to. For example, when you are pruned as you are doing your duty, you will feel unhappy, and you will be in a negative state. At this time, the viewpoints and attitudes that you reveal, as well as what your standpoints are—these are some of the relevant details of your state. Does this not touch on the things you usually experience? (It does.) This is related to people’s lives; it is something that everyone can relate to—something they can feel, experience, and come into contact with—each day in their daily lives. So what do you think: When in a negative state, what things pour out of a person? (Misunderstanding, evasion, self-restriction, and giving up entirely after any setbacks; when it’s serious, someone might even shirk their responsibilities altogether.) When it’s serious and they shirk their responsibilities, is that an attitude or a standpoint? Or is it something else? (It is a kind of condition and mood.) It is more of a condition and mood. At this time, what is a person’s attitude as they do their duty? (They are negative and slack off, they have no motivation, and they just go through the motions.) This touches on the true state of affairs. Saying that “they have no motivation” is a meaningless phrase; you must speak to the true state of affairs. When people do their duty without motivation, what are they thinking in their hearts? What is the corrupt disposition they reveal at this time? (They are perfunctory in their duty; they do things half-heartedly.) This is not a disposition but a definition that is applied to you after you act; it is a way of acting. But as for what caused you to be perfunctory, do you not need to dig deeper? By digging deep enough, you will uncover your corrupt disposition. Being perfunctory is a revelation of a corrupt disposition. The way you think in your heart can lead to being perfunctory as you do your duty, and can lead to you being less energetic than before. That thought of yours is a corrupt disposition, and the thing which led to that thought is your nature. Some people encounter pruning as they do their duty, and they say: “With my limited abilities, how much can I really do? I do not understand much, so if I want to do this job well, will I not have to learn as I go? Will that be easy for me? God just doesn’t understand people; isn’t this like driving a duck onto a perch? Let someone who understands more than me do it. I can only do it like this—I can’t do any more than this.” People regularly say and think such things, right? (Right.) Everyone can admit that. No one is perfect, and no one is an angel; people do not live in a vacuum. Everyone has these thoughts and revelations of corruption. Everyone is capable of revealing these things and living in these states frequently, and it’s not of their own volition; they can’t help but think this way. Before anything happens to them, people have a fairly normal state, but things are different when something happens to them—a negative state is naturally revealed very easily, without obstacle or restraint, and without the instigation or incitement of others; as long as the things they encounter are not in line with their own will, these corrupt dispositions are revealed at all times and places. Why are they able to be revealed at all times and places? This proves that people have this kind of corrupt disposition and corrupt nature inside them. People’s corrupt dispositions are not imposed upon them by others, nor are they instilled by others, much less are they taught, instigated, or abetted by others; rather, people themselves possess them. If people do not resolve these corrupt dispositions, then they cannot live in correct, positive states. Why are these corrupt dispositions often revealed? Actually, you all have already become aware that these states are wrong and abnormal, that they need to be changed; up until now, you have not yet cast off these corrupt dispositions or given up these incorrect thoughts and viewpoints, and your states have not yet had any significant change. After ten or twenty years, you still have not had any change at all, and you are in the same state as before when you reveal corruption, with no significant decline, so what is the problem? What does this prove? After all these years, the majority of you have not had any growth; you merely understand some words and doctrines, but you cannot put the truth into practice, and are unable to give experiential testimony; this is because in all these years, you have not pursued the truth, and your corrupt disposition has not changed significantly. This proves that your life experience is too shallow, and has no depth; it can be said with certainty that your current stature is too small, and you do not possess any of the truth reality. Are you able to accept what I have said? Those who have a little practical experience should be able to understand My words, but those who do not understand the truth and do not yet know what life entry is might not understand the meaning of these words. Why did I just ask you what a state is? If you do not understand what a state is, then you will not understand what I am saying at all; you will merely listen to the words, treating them like they are correct. If you have this viewpoint, it proves that you have no experience, and you do not understand God’s words. If people want to enter into the truth reality, to have true life entry, they must understand quite a few states; they must understand and get a handle on their own problems, and know what kind of state they are in in their real lives, whether that state is right or wrong, what kind of corrupt disposition people reveal when they are in the wrong state, and what the essence of this corrupt disposition is—they must comprehend all these things. If you do not comprehend or grasp these things, then for one thing, you do not know where to set about for a knowledge of your own corrupt disposition, to allow yourself to change; for another thing, you do not know where to set about to eat and drink God’s words or enter into the truth. Do you often run into the following situation? After listening to Me speak about something, you only know about that thing, but not what state it refers to, and you are not able to apply it to yourselves? (We do.) This shows that your experience has not yet reached that point. If what I talk about has to do with you, and is closely tied to your life—for example, talking about the things people come into contact with every day as they do their duties, or the corrupt dispositions which people reveal as they do their duties, or things that touch on people’s intents, arrogant dispositions, their being perfunctory, or their attitudes as they do their duties—once you listen, you might be able to apply it to yourselves. If I talk about it more deeply, there are things you might not be able to apply to yourselves. Does this happen sometimes? (It does.) As to the things you cannot apply to yourselves, do you listen to them like listening to doctrine, merely letting them wash over you? Then how should you understand those things you can apply to yourselves? (Reflect on and come to know ourselves, and seek the truth to resolve our own corruption.) This is the correct way to experience.

To say that reflecting on your own corrupt disposition and getting to know it is important is a broad statement. How should you actually reflect and get to know yourself? There is a path here: When something happens to you, you should look at your viewpoint and attitude, the thoughts you have, and from what kind of standpoint you look at, deal with, and treat this problem. Through these steps, you can reflect and come to know your own corrupt disposition. What is the purpose of this kind of reflection and self-knowledge? It is to better understand your own corrupt state, and then seek the truth to resolve your problems and achieve a change of disposition. So what stage are you all currently in? How much and how deeply do you know yourselves? How much do you understand about what state you are in at different times or when different things happen to you? Have you put forth any effort or done your homework in this regard? Have you experienced any entry? (When more obvious things or major events happen to me, I may catch some of my own revelations while easily missing the smaller issues. Sometimes I am unaware that I live in the wrong state.) When you are unaware, what kind of state are you in? In what kind of situation would you be unaware? (Doing my duty as if it was merely doing things, without putting effort toward the truth in God’s words, so even if a corrupt disposition were to be revealed, I would not know.) Treating your duty as just doing things, as a kind of job, task, or responsibility, and doing it numbly, without linking it to life entry, is a very common state; it is treating your duty as merely a matter to be handled, rather than as a path or method to life entry. It’s just like going to work: Some people treat their work as a career, incorporating it into their lives, and integrating it with their interests and hobbies, as well as their life ideals and goals. Meanwhile, some others treat going to work as a kind of responsibility—they can’t not go to work. They show up punctually every day so they can earn some money to support their families but they have no life goals or ideals. Right now, are the majority of you not in this kind of state? Your duty is disconnected from God’s words or the truth. Even if you recognize your own errors, you do not achieve any real transformation; you only go back to think about matters of life entry when there is a little guilt in your heart. The rest of the time, you usually just do whatever you want. You do a little better when you are pleased or in a very good mood, but if something happens one day that goes against your wishes, or if you have a nightmare that puts you in a bad mood, then it can influence your state of mind for days, as well as influencing the results of your duty. Nevertheless, you have no awareness of this in your heart; you are muddleheaded, and for those ten days, or even two weeks, you hold things up, just being perfunctory to get by. When someone lives in such a state, does life entry not come to a standstill? If life entry comes to a standstill, can people’s actions and the duty they do satisfy God? (No.) Why not? Their actions and duty in this case have nothing to do with the truth and do not amount to testifying of God, so doing their duty in this way cannot satisfy God. It’s possible that you don’t make any mistakes in your duty for a time, so you think that doing your duty this way is totally appropriate; as long as you always keep busy with your duty, without abandoning your work, and without pondering other things, you feel that doing your duty this way is fine. Is this kind of attitude not an example of being perfunctory? If you are satisfied with mere actions, disconnected from the truth principles, then can you achieve results in doing your duty? When God’s work is finished, how will you make your account to God? If you do not take responsibility as you do your duty, and you do not seek the truth and handle matters according to principles, is this doing your duty up to an acceptable standard? Will it earn God’s approval? If you suddenly encounter a trial or are pruned, and then realize that judgment and chastisement have come because you have offended God’s disposition, rousing you abruptly from your dream and causing you to finally get it together for a couple of days, is this a normal state for life entry? (No.) The apparent change in you after you are pruned is like the pain after a whip strike. You have a little knowledge of yourself. From the outside, it may appear as if you have grown a little and have been emotionally impacted by being pruned, judged, and chastised. But subjectively speaking, if people do not comprehend or grasp their own corrupt dispositions and their various corrupt states at all, and if they have never carefully examined these things, and have never resolved these problems, can they achieve a normal state for life entry? Can they enter into the truth reality? I do not think it is easy for them to achieve. Some people say: “I am able to grasp principles in the matters of doing my duty; is this not understanding the truth and entering into the truth reality?” Keeping regulations is easy, and outward actions are easy to hold to, but they are not equivalent to practicing the truth, nor are they equivalent to handling matters according to principles. For example, say you were to get up at five in the morning every day, and go to sleep at ten at night; would you be able to follow this principle in your daily life? (No.) A schedule from five to ten is pretty good; it is in line with people’s natural rhythms, and is good for their bodies, but why is it difficult for them to accept? There is a problem here. It’s not to say that people do not know this reasoning or are not aware of this common knowledge—they know it all too well—so why can they not accept it? Why are people unwilling to keep to this schedule, unwilling to live according to this method and routine? This involves people’s physical interests. Is not wanting to get up early not the same as wanting to sleep more, as wanting to follow your physical preferences and physical feelings? Getting up early conflicts with people’s physical comfort, so they are unwilling to do it, and it makes them feel unhappy. So, can people accept the fact that “getting up early is good for your body”? They cannot. People cannot give up even this little bit of their interest, and yet they still must discipline their bodies, pray, and work on their thoughts. They must also be influenced by their environment: They only get up when they see that other people have gotten up and they become embarrassed about their desire for sleep. They feel compelled to get up every day, and they are particularly unhappy about it. What leads to these thoughts and states? People covet physical comfort, they want to act however they desire, and they harbor lazy, self-indulgent thoughts. For one thing, they do not consider the regular patterns of their bodies, and for another thing, they do not consider the duty they are doing; rather, they first focus on satisfying their physical interests. In the final analysis, there is something in the corrupt disposition of man, which is that they always want to indulge the flesh and be unrestrained. If they are pruned, they try to reason, always defending themselves, which is a little unreasonable. Getting up early is a small matter that does not touch on people’s gains or losses—as long as you can overcome your desire for more sleep, you can achieve it—but it is very difficult for people to give up the small physical benefit of resting a little longer. When your desire for more sleep influences your work, you become aware that this is not in line with the truth principles; not only do you not self-reflect, you even have complaints in your heart, and you are unhappy, always thinking: “How is it that I can never indulge myself a little, or do whatever I want for a while?” Some people often have such thoughts. So how should this state be resolved? You must pray, be able to overcome your physical difficulties, strive to mature, stop coveting comfort, be able to suffer, be loyal to your duty, not do whatever you want, and learn to restrain yourself. Is restraining yourself easy? (No.) Why not? (Because people are unwilling to be restrained, they do not like to be managed, and they want to indulge themselves.) People who cannot understand self-restraint, who are unable to restrain themselves, who have poor self-restraint, and who always act wantonly and indulge in fantasy have immature humanity, no matter their age. When this small matter touches on people’s interests, their corrupt disposition is revealed. When this happens, they need to seek the truth to resolve it; they need to come to know themselves and understand the truth, in order to resolve the problem of their corruption. When people are cleansed of their corrupt disposition, they unwittingly enter into the truth reality, their life grows and matures, and their life disposition changes.

I just drew a simple example about how something as small as a daily routine can reveal people’s corrupt dispositions and what is really going through their mind; this has all been uncovered now. By uncovering these corrupt dispositions, you have discovered that you have indeed been heavily corrupted by Satan. Although you have believed in God for years, and you understand a little doctrine, you have not yet cast off your corrupt disposition. No matter what duty you do, you cannot do it to an acceptable standard; no matter what matters you handle, you cannot do it according to principles; you are not yet someone who truly submits to God. So based on people’s current states, have they really been saved by God? Not yet, because they have not yet fully cast off their corrupt dispositions, their practice of the truth is still too limited, and they are far from truly submitting to God; some people are even capable of following Satan, or man. These facts are sufficient to prove that people’s stature has not truly reached the point where they have been saved. Everyone ought to categorize themselves based on their own true state and determine what kind of person they are. By reflecting on their corrupt dispositions, some people come to know their own various inner states, as well as the thoughts, viewpoints, and attitudes that arise as different things happen to them. Some people see that they are arrogant and conceited, that they like to show off, and that they like to sit on their high horse and place themselves above others. Some people see that they are crooked and deceitful, employing all kinds of underhanded measures, and that they are malicious. Others see that they put profit first, that they love to take advantage of others, and that they are selfish and despicable people. Some people reflect for a while and realize that they are hypocrites. Others used to think that they were talented, that they had caliber, and that they had a good command of their profession, but after reflecting for a while, they realize that they are without a single redeeming quality; they are talentless and, moreover, foolish and unprincipled in their actions. Some people reflect for a while and realize that they are petty, hair-splitting people; it is unacceptable for others to say anything that touches on their interests, and they know nothing about tolerance. Will it help with your life entry to gain knowledge like this from self-reflection? (It will.) How will it help? (It can help us to have a heart that seeks the truth. If we do not get to know these problems, then we will not know that we are often revealing corrupt disposition, much less be able to seek the truth to resolve our problems.) (If we do not know about these, then we will not know that we are in a pitiful situation. After getting to know them, we will want to seek the truth to resolve our problems. We will be willing to shake off the shackles of our corrupt disposition, and will want to seek the truth to comport ourselves according to God’s words.) Consider a person who thinks that they are quite great, that they have a strong sense of justice, that they are very magnanimous, talented, tolerant, kind, honest, and especially devoted to others, and that their own corrupt disposition has the same little flaws as ordinary people, such as arrogance, self-righteousness, hate, and envy, but also thinks that, other than these little blemishes, they are perfect, as well as more honorable, more noble, and more loving than others—if someone is always in such a state, do you think they can come before God and truly repent? (No.) Under what circumstances can a person really come before God to know themselves, truly prostrate themselves before Him, and say, “Oh God, I am deeply corrupted by Satan. I am unwilling to give up on anything that relates to my own interests. I am a selfish and despicable person, without a single redeeming quality. I am willing to truly repent and live out the semblance of a real human—I want God to save me”? When a person has the will to truly repent, it is good; then it is easy for them to enter onto the right track of belief in God, and achieve salvation.

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