Only Resolving One’s Corrupt Disposition Can Bring About True Transformation
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 blame Him. Their corrupt dispositions will pour forth, 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 often pour forth from people. “Corrupt disposition” is a term people are familiar with, but not everyone is clear on what exactly a corrupt disposition is, which outpourings 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 outpourings 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 dealt with and 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 praised 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 forsake 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 dealt with and 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 pour forth from you, 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-definition, 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 that pours forth at this time? (They just go through the motions as they do their duty; they act perfunctorily.) 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 just go through the motions, do you not need to dig deeper? By digging deep enough, you will uncover your corrupt disposition. Going through the motions is an outpouring of a corrupt disposition. The way you think in your heart can lead to just going through the motions 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 and being dealt with 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 corrupt outpourings. Everyone is capable of having these things pour out of them 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 naturally pours out of them 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 pour out of them at all times and places. Why are they able to pour forth 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 do these corrupt dispositions often pour forth? 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 pours forth from people 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 pour forth from people as they do their duties, or things that touch on people’s intents, arrogant dispositions, their just going through the motions, 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 outpourings 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 pour forth, 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 going through the motions 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 just going through the motions? 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 dealt with, 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 and dealt with 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, dealt with, 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?” The rules are easy to keep, 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 dealt with, 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 pours forth. 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 great, righteous, 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.
Say someone paints a painting—they think it is perfect and they are satisfied, until one day, someone says that their painting has a lot of flaws. Before that person even gets into the details, they feel that this constitutes an attack on them. They feel upset, and immediately counter with: “You say I don’t paint well? You paint worse than me and your works have more problems! No one even wants to look at them!” Why are they able to say such a thing? What sort of state are they in to be able to say such a thing? Why is such a small thing able to make them so angry and furious, and give rise to a retaliatory, aggressive mindset? What led to this? (They think their painting is perfect, and someone else saying that it has flaws offends them.) It’s that you cannot damage their perfect image. If they think something is good, you had best not point out any blemishes or bring up any doubts. You must say: “Your painting is really good. It could be called a masterpiece. I don’t think the skills of even the great masters are any better than yours. If you release this piece, it will certainly make a stir in the industry, and be a prized possession for generations!” Then they will be pleased. The pleasure and fury are from the same person, so how is it they have two different outpourings? Which one is their corrupt disposition? (They both are.) Which of these corrupt dispositions is more severe? (The second one.) The second one reveals their hypocrisy, ignorance, and foolishness. When someone says that you paint badly, why are you so unhappy, to the point that you develop a hateful, aggressive, retaliatory mindset? Why are you so pleased when someone strings together a few nice words for you? Why are you so extremely smug? Are such people not totally shameless? They know no shame; they are both foolish and pitiful. Although these words do not sound very nice, this is nevertheless the case. Where do people’s ignorance, foolishness, and ugly countenances come from? They come from people’s corrupt dispositions. If someone has such an attitude when things like this happen, the things that pour forth from them are not the reason and conscience that someone with normal humanity ought to possess, nor are they what someone with normal humanity ought to be living out. Then how should matters like this be dealt with? Some people say: “I have a way. When someone else boasts that I am good, I am silent; when someone says that I am bad, I am also silent. I deal with everything in a cold way. This does not involve being right or wrong, nor is it an outpouring of a corrupt disposition. Isn’t it great?” How is this viewpoint? Does this mean that these people do not have a corrupt disposition? No matter how good someone is at pretending, even if they can do it for a while, doing it for a lifetime is not easy. However good you are at pretending, or however tightly you cover things up, you cannot disguise or cover up your corrupt disposition. You might be able to deceive people about what is in your heart, but you cannot deceive God, nor can you deceive yourself. Regardless of whether or not it pours out, in the end, what a person thinks of and what arises in their mind, whether intense or not, whether apparent or not, represents their corrupt disposition. So do these corrupt dispositions not naturally pour forth anywhere and at any time? Some people think that they might let a remark slip sometimes when they are not careful, exposing their innermost thoughts, and they regret it. They think, “Next time, I won’t say anything; he who talks a lot errs a lot. If I don’t say anything, then my corrupt disposition won’t pour out, right?” In the end, however, when they act, their corrupt dispositions pour forth once again, and they once again expose their intents, which can happen anywhere and at any time, and is impossible to guard against. So, if your corrupt disposition is not resolved, it is normal for that corrupt disposition to regularly pour forth. There is only one way to resolve it, which is that you must seek the truth and put forth some effort, until you really understand the truth, and are able to see through to the essence of your corrupt disposition; then, you will be able to hate Satan and your flesh, and in this way, it will be easy for you to put the truth into practice. When you are able to put the truth into practice, what pours out of you will not be a corrupt disposition, but rather outpourings of conscience, reason, and normal humanity. So, only by seeking the truth can you resolve the problem of a corrupt disposition; relying on self-control, restraint, and self-discipline is not a good method, and cannot resolve a corrupt disposition at all.
So how do you resolve corrupt dispositions? First, you must recognize and dissect the origin of these corrupt dispositions, then find the corresponding method of practice. Take the example I just gave. This person thinks that their painting is perfect, but in the end, someone who understands painting says that it has many flaws, so they are not happy, and feel that their self-esteem has been injured. When your self-esteem is injured, and when your corrupt disposition pours out, what can be done? Other people put forth different ideas and perspectives, so what can be done when you cannot accept them? Some people are incapable of handling this correctly. When something happens to them, they first analyze it: “What do they mean by that? Are they directing it at me? Is it because I gave them a nasty look yesterday, so today they want to retaliate against me? If they’re directing that at me, then I won’t just let it drop: a tooth for a tooth, an eye for an eye. If they will not be kind to me, then I will not be just to them. I must retaliate!” What kind of outpouring is this? It is still the outpouring of a corrupt disposition. In practice, this kind of outpouring of a corrupt disposition shows an inclination and intent to retaliate. In essence, what is the character of this course of action? Is it not malicious? There is a malicious nature contained therein. Would people retaliate if they did not have a malicious nature? They would not think of it. Only when thinking of retaliation does this kind of language pour out of them: “You say I don’t paint well? You paint worse than me and your works have more problems! No one even wants to look at them!” What is the character of such speech? It is a kind of attack. What do you think of such a course of action? Are attacking and retaliating positive or negative? Are they commendatory or derogatory? Clearly, they are negative and derogatory. Attack and retaliation is one type of action and outpouring which comes from a malicious satanic nature. It is also a kind of corrupt disposition. People think like this: “If you are unkind to me, I’ll do wrong to you! If you don’t treat me with dignity, why would I treat you with dignity?” What sort of thinking is this? Is it not a retaliatory way of thinking? In the views of an ordinary person, is this not a valid perspective? Does it not hold water? “I will not attack unless I am attacked; if I am attacked, I will certainly counterattack,” and “Here’s a taste of your own medicine”—the unbelievers often say such things; among them, these are all rationales that hold water and completely conform to human notions. Yet how should those who believe in God and pursue the truth view these words? Are these ideas correct? (No.) Why are they not correct? How should they be discerned? Where do these things originate? (From Satan.) They originate from Satan, of this there is no doubt. Which of Satan’s dispositions do they come from? They come from the malicious nature of Satan; they contain venom, and they contain the true face of Satan in all its maliciousness and ugliness. They contain this kind of nature essence. What is the character of the perspectives, thoughts, outpourings, speech, and even actions that contain that kind of nature essence? Without any doubt, it is man’s corrupt disposition—it is the disposition of Satan. Are these satanic things in line with God’s words? Are they in line with the truth? Do they have a basis in God’s words? (No.) Are they the actions that followers of God should do, and the thoughts and points of view that they should possess? Are these thoughts and courses of action in line with the truth? (No.) Seeing as these things are not in line with the truth, are they in line with the conscience and reason of normal humanity? (No.) Now you can clearly see that these things are not in line with the truth or with normal humanity. Did you previously think that these courses of action and thoughts were appropriate, presentable, and had a leg to stand on? (Yes.) These satanic thoughts and theories take a dominant position in people’s hearts, guiding their thoughts, viewpoints, conduct, and courses of action, as well as their various states; so can people understand the truth? Absolutely not. On the contrary—do people not practice and hold to the things they think are right as if they were the truth? If these things are the truth, then why does sticking to them not resolve your practical problems? Why does sticking to them not produce a true change in you, despite you having believed in God for years? Why are you unable to use God’s words to discern these philosophies which come from Satan? Do you still hold to these satanic philosophies as if they were the truth? If you truly have discernment, then have you not found the root of the problems? Because what you were holding to was never the truth—rather, it was satanic fallacies and philosophies—that is where the problem lies. You all should follow this path to examine and scrutinize yourselves; see which things within you are those that you think have a leg to stand on, that are in line with common sense and worldly wisdom, that you think you can put on the table—the incorrect thoughts, viewpoints, courses of action, and foundations that you have already treated as the truth in your heart, which you do not think are corrupt dispositions. Keep digging for these things; there are many more. If you dig up all these corrupt and negative things, dissect them until you have discernment, and are able to give them up, then your corrupt dispositions will be easily resolved, and you will be able to be cleansed.
Let’s go back to the example from before. When the painter hears others’ assessments of their work, both negative and pleasant, what sort of response is the correct one, with behavior and outpourings that have both humanity and rationality? I just said that those thoughts within people, whether they think they are right or wrong, all come from Satan, from their corrupt disposition; they are incorrect, and are not the truth. However rightly you think, or however much you think others approve of your thoughts, they do not come from the truth; they are not the outpourings or the living out of the truth reality, and they are not in line with God’s will. So how should you actually treat this matter with reason and humanity? First of all, do not have smug feelings about the words of praise others give you; that is one kind of state. Additionally, do not be averse to or loathe the bad things others say about you, much less have a malicious or retaliatory mentality. Whether they are praising you or not, or saying bad things about you, you must have a correct attitude in your heart. What kind of attitude? First off, you must keep calm, then say to them: “Painting is just an amateur hobby for me. I know my skill level. Regardless of what you say, I can treat you correctly. Let’s not discuss painting; I’m not interested in it. What I am interested in is if you can tell me where I have outpourings of corrupt dispositions that I have not yet realized, that I am unaware of. Let’s fellowship and investigate these matters. Let’s both experience growth in our life entry, and have deeper entry—that would be so great! What use is it to discuss external matters? That cannot help a person do their duty well. Whether you say my painting is good or bad, I don’t really care. If you praise my painting, might you not have an ulterior motive? Might you not want to use me to do something for you? If you want me to help you handle a matter, I will help with what I can, free of charge; if I can’t help, I can give you some suggestions. There is no need to interact with me in this way. It’s hypocritical, and makes me feel disgusted and nauseated! If you say my painting is bad, are you trying to tempt me, and make me fall into temptation? Do you want me to act impetuously, and then to retaliate and attack you? That, I will not do; I am not so stupid. I will not be tricked by Satan.” What do you think of such an attitude? (It is good.) What is this course of action called? It is called striking back at Satan. Some people who do not pursue the truth have nothing to do, and say all kinds of useless words: “Ah, your old career was so prosperous, it’s enough to make someone jealous!” “Ah! Look at how beautiful you are! Your face is the epitome of good fortune.” They look to see who is powerful, who has the looks, or who could be of some use to them, and then stick close to them constantly, flatter them, praise them, and fawn on them. They use all kinds of despicable, shameless methods to satisfy their own unmentionable intents and desires. Is this not disgusting? (It is.) So how should you treat this kind of person when you run into them? Is it right to go a tooth for a tooth, an eye for an eye? (No.) If you have no time, just say a few harsh words to strike back and shame them. You can say: “How are you so boring? Do you not have any matters to attend to? What use is it to gossip about such things?” If you think that their flattering words are too superficial and nauseating, you do not like to listen, and you do not have the time to speak at length, then reply with these few sentences and be done. If you have time, then fellowship with them. Speaking of fellowship, here, there is no corrupt disposition, no hotheadedness or naturalness, no attacking or retaliation, no hate, and not a thing that people detest—the things that pour out of you must be in line with normal humanity, must be in line with conscience and reason, must have the truth reality, must be able to help others, and must be constructive and beneficial to others. All these things are positive outpourings. So what are some negative outpourings? Try to summarize them. (Retaliation, attacking, going tooth for tooth.) Retaliation, attacking, going tooth for tooth, an eye for an eye, and the ideas that people traditionally think are correct: “Here’s a taste of your own medicine,” and “I am an upright gentleman, I am not a despicable person, and I am not a hypocrite.” Are these things people think are right in line with the truth? (No.) These things are worth probing. Those things which are simple, clear, and easy to see at a glance are a bit easier to discern. As to the things that the majority of people cannot see, which many people think are right and good—people do not discern them, so it is easy for them to treat and keep to them as if they were the truth. In keeping to them, people think that what they are living out is the truth reality and normal humanity; they think of how perfect, how good, how just and honorable, how open and aboveboard they are. Living out and replacing the truth with those things which are hotheaded, natural, fleshly, ethical, and moral as if they were the reality of the truth is a mistake that the majority of people are prone to committing, such that even those who have believed in God for many years are unable to discern it; almost everyone who believes in God must go through this phase, and only those who pursue the truth are able to escape this mistaken idea. So, people must recognize and probe deep into these things which come from hotheadedness and from naturalness. If you can see through and resolve these things, some of the things that normally pour out of you will be in line with the truth reality. Practicing the truth can be achieved with normal humanity; practicing the truth is the only standard which proves that someone has conscience and reason. No matter how much of the truth they practice, it is all positive; it is absolutely not a corrupt disposition, much less acting with hotheadedness. If someone has hurt you before, and you treat them the same way, is this in line with the truth principles? If, because they hurt you—hurt you very badly—you try by fair means or foul to retaliate against and punish them, according to the unbelievers, this is fair and reasonable, and there is nothing to criticize; but what kind of a course of action is this? This is hotheadedness. They hurt you, which course of action is the outpouring of a corrupt satanic nature, but if you retaliate against them, is your course of action not the same as theirs? The mentality, starting point, and source behind your retaliation are the same as theirs; there is no difference. So, the character of your actions is certainly hotheaded, natural, and satanic. Seeing as it is satanic and hotheaded, should you not change this course of action of yours? Should the source, intents, and motivations behind your actions change? (Yes.) How do you change them? If what happens to you is something small, although it makes you uncomfortable, when it does not touch on your own interests, or hurt you badly, or cause you to hate it, or make you risk your life to retaliate, then you can lay down your hatred without relying on hotheadedness; rather, you can rely on your rationality and humanity to properly and calmly handle this matter. You can frankly and sincerely explain this matter to your counterpart, and resolve your hatred. But, if this hatred is too deep, such that you get to the point of wanting retaliation and feeling bitter hatred, then can you still exercise patience? When you are able to not rely on hotheadedness, and can calmly say, “I must be rational. I must live by my conscience and reason, and live by the truth principles. I cannot respond to evil with evil, I must stand firm in my testimony and shame Satan,” is this not a different state? (It is.) What kinds of states have you had in the past? If someone else steals something of yours, or eats something of yours, this does not amount to some great, deep hatred, so you will not think it necessary to go argue with them until you are red in the face because of this matter—it is beneath you, and not worth it. In this kind of situation, you can handle the matter rationally. Is being able to handle the matter rationally equivalent to practicing the truth? Is it equivalent to having the truth reality in this matter? Absolutely not. Rationality and practicing the truth are two separate things. If you encounter something that makes you particularly furious, but you are able to rationally and calmly deal with it, without letting hotheadedness or corruption pour out of you—this requires you to understand the truth principles and rely on wisdom to deal with it. In such a situation, if you do not pray to God or seek the truth, hotheadedness will easily arise in you—even violence. If you do not seek the truth, only adopting human methods, and dealing with the matter according to your own preferences, then you cannot resolve it by preaching a little doctrine or sitting down and laying your heart bare. It is not that simple.
Right now, what we are fellowshiping about all touches on the problem of people’s corrupt dispositions and corrupt natures. Some people are born with a simple, straightforward temperament; when others cause losses to their interests, or say something unpleasant to them, they laugh it off and let it pass. Some people are petty, and cannot let it pass, bearing a grudge all their lives. Which of these two kinds of people has a corrupt disposition? Actually, they both do, it’s just that their natural temperament is different. Temperament cannot influence a person’s corrupt disposition, nor does temperament determine the depth of their corrupt disposition. People’s upbringing, education, and family circumstances do not determine the depth of their corrupt disposition. So is it related to the things people study? Some people say: “I studied literature and have read many books; I have good taste and am cultured, so my ability to self-restrain is stronger than others’, my understanding of people is greater than others’, and my mind is broader than others’. When I encounter things, I have a way to resolve them, so my corrupt disposition might not be so deep.” Some people say: “I studied music, so I am a special talent. Music uplifts people’s souls and purifies their souls. As each note impacts a person’s soul, their soul is purified and transformed. Listening to different music puts people in different states of mind, and gives rise to different moods. When I am in a negative mood, I listen to music to resolve it, so my corrupt disposition gradually weakens as I listen to music. My corrupt nature is also gradually resolved as my musical ability improves.” Some people who sing say: “Pleasant songs can bring happiness to people’s souls. The more I sing, the more splendid my voice becomes, the greater my singing skill becomes, and the more professional I become, which then improves my state. As my state becomes better and better, will my corrupt disposition not become smaller and smaller?” Do you think it is this way? (No.) So, many people have mistaken ideas in their knowledge and understanding of corrupt dispositions; when they have received a little education, they think their corrupt disposition is reduced. Some older people even think: “When I was young I suffered a lot, and life was very simple; I focused on saving and not wasting. Whatever job I did, I was clean as a whistle and my speech was courteous. I spoke frankly and was a guileless person. So, I don’t have that many corrupt dispositions. Some young people are influenced by their social environment: They take drugs, and they pursue wicked trends. They are severely infected by the social atmosphere, and are deeply corrupted!” These mistaken understandings and knowledge of corrupt dispositions cause people to have different feelings and biases regarding their corrupt essence and satanic nature. These feelings and biases make the majority of people feel that although they have a corrupt disposition, although they are arrogant, self-righteous, and rebellious, the majority of their behavior is still good. In particular, when people are able to observe the rules, have normal, regulated spiritual lives, and can speak some spiritual doctrine, then they are even more convinced that they have achievements in the path of believing in God, and that their corrupt disposition has largely been resolved. There are even some people who, when their state is not too bad, when they have achievements in doing their duty, or when they accomplish something, think that they are already spiritual, that they are holy people who have already been perfected and cleansed, and that they no longer have a corrupt disposition. Are such thoughts of people not the various misconceptions that arise under the circumstances of not truly knowing their own corrupt, satanic dispositions? (They are.) Are these misconceptions not the greatest obstacle to people resolving their corrupt dispositions and difficulties? This is the greatest obstacle, the thing that makes people most difficult to deal with.
Do you understand what we have fellowshiped about today? Have you grasped the key elements? If people’s corrupt dispositions are not resolved, they cannot enter into the truth reality. If they do not know which corrupt dispositions they have, or what their own satanic nature essence is, then are they able to truly admit that they themselves are corrupt humans? (No.) If people are unable to truly admit that they are satanic, that they are members of the corrupt human race, then can they truly repent? (No.) If they cannot truly repent, then might they not often think that they are not so bad, that they are dignified, high in station, that they have status and honor? Might they not often have such thoughts and states? (Yes.) So why do these states appear? It all comes down to one sentence: If people’s corrupt dispositions are not resolved, then their hearts are always disturbed, and it is difficult for them to have a normal state. That is to say, if your corrupt disposition is not resolved in some aspect, it is very difficult for you to be free of the influence of a negative state, and very difficult for you to walk out of that negative state, such that you might even think that this state of yours is right, correct, and in line with the truth. You will hold to it and persist in it, and naturally become trapped in it, so it will be very difficult to walk out of it. Then one day, once you understand the truth, you will realize that this kind of state leads you to misunderstand and resist God, and leads you into conflict with and judgment of God, to the point that you doubt God’s words are the truth, doubt God’s work, doubt that God is sovereign over all, and doubt that God is the reality and origin of all positive things. You will see that your state is very dangerous. This severe consequence was brought about because you did not truly have knowledge of these satanic philosophies, ideas, and theories. Only at this time will you be able to see how sinister and malicious Satan is; Satan is quite capable of deceiving and corrupting people, causing them to take the path of resisting God and betraying Him. If corrupt dispositions are not resolved, the consequences are severe. If you are capable of having this knowledge, this realization, it is entirely the result of you understanding the truth, and of God’s words enlightening and illuminating you. People who do not understand the truth cannot see through how Satan corrupts people, how it deceives people and makes them resist God; this consequence is especially dangerous. As people experience God’s work, if they do not know how to self-reflect, discern negative things, or discern satanic philosophies, then they have no way to be free of Satan’s deception and corruption. Why does God require people to read more of His words? It is so that people will understand the truth, come to know themselves, see clearly what gives rise to their corrupt states, and see where their ideas, viewpoints, and methods of speaking, behaving, and dealing with matters come from. When you become aware that these viewpoints to which you hold are not in line with the truth, that they are in conflict with all that God has said, and that they are not what He wants; when God has requirements of you, when His words come upon you, and when your state and mentality do not allow you to submit to God, nor be submissive to the circumstances He has arranged, nor cause you to live free and liberated in the presence of God and satisfy Him—this all proves that the state to which you hold is wrong. Have you run into this kind of situation before: You live by the things that you think are positive, that you think are the most useful to you; but unexpectedly, when things happen to you, the things that you think are most correct often have no positive effect—on the contrary, they cause you to have doubts about God, leave you without a path, give you misunderstandings about God, and give rise to conflict with God—have you had such times? (Yes.) Of course, you would certainly not hold to those things you think are wrong; you only keep holding to and persisting in the things you think are right, always living in such a state. When one day you understand the truth, only then do you realize that the things you hold to are not positive—they are totally erroneous, things that people think are good, but which are not the truth. How much of the time do you realize and become aware that the things you hold to are wrong? If you are aware that they are wrong the majority of the time, but you do not reflect, and you have conflict in your heart, are unable to accept the truth, are unable to correctly face these things, and you also reason on your own behalf—if this kind of erroneous state is not turned around, it is very dangerous. Always holding to such things makes it very easy for you to come to grief, easy for you to stumble and fail, and additionally, you will not enter into the truth reality. When people always reason on their own behalf, it is rebellion; it means that they have no sense. Even if they do not say anything out loud, if they hold it in their hearts, then the root problem still has not been resolved. So at what times are you capable of not coming into conflict with God? You must turn your state around and resolve the roots of your problems in this regard; you must be clear on where exactly the mistake is in the viewpoint you hold to; you must probe at this, and seek the truth to resolve it. Only then can you live in the right state. When you live in the right state, you will have no misunderstandings about God, and you will not have any conflict with Him, much less will notions arise in you. At this time, your rebelliousness in this regard will be resolved. When it is resolved, and you know how to act in line with God’s will, will your actions at this time not be compatible with God? If you are compatible with God in this matter, then will all you do not be in line with His will? Are courses of action and practice that are in line with the will of God not in line with the truth? As you stand firm in this matter, you are living in the right state. When you live in the right state, that which pours out of you and which you live out is no longer a corrupt disposition; you are able to live out normal humanity, it is easy for you to put the truth into practice, and you are truly submissive. Right now, the experience of the majority of you has not yet reached this point, so maybe you do not understand God’s words very well, and your understanding of them is unclear. You can accept them in theory and it seems as though you understand, but also as though you do not understand. The part you understand is the doctrine, and the part you do not understand is the part about states and reality. As your experience deepens, you will come to understand these words, and you will know how to put them into practice. Right now, regardless of the depth of your experience, the difficulties you have in the various things that happen to you are certainly not few, so how can you resolve these difficulties? First, you must reflect on the corrupt states that you should probe into: What different aspects are there? Who would like to try describing these? (It includes five such aspects: ideas, viewpoints, conditions, moods, and standpoints.) Once you understand the doctrine, then how should you practice and experience when things happen to you? (When something happens, we should go examine what disposition and nature the attitudes and ideas that pour out of us pertain to, come to know these mentalities, ideas, and viewpoints, then start to resolve them from here.) This is right. If you thoroughly know your own true states, attitudes, ideas, and viewpoints, then this problem is already half solved, and then by seeking the truth and putting it into practice, the difficulty is gone.
There are quite a few young people among you, as well as people who have not yet established families. You all have left your homes to do your duty for several years, so do you miss home? Do you miss your parents? Do you often live in the state of missing your parents? Let’s hear about the state of missing your parents—this is a real experience. (When I had just come overseas, I especially missed my mother and sister; I always used to rely on them, so when I left on my own, I constantly missed them. But with this much overseas experience, I feel that the One I can’t leave behind now is God; when anything happens, I pray to Him, and I do not miss them anymore.) These are two different states. What is the first state? Always missing home, missing your mother and sister. What are the specifics of this kind of state? It’s that when something happens, you do not know how to do this or that, so you feel helpless; you cannot be without your loved ones at your side, and you have no one to rely on. When you open your eyes in the morning, you start to miss them, and before you sleep at night you think of them; you are stuck in this kind of state of missing your loved ones. So why do you miss them so much? It is because your circumstances have changed and you’ve left them behind. You worry about them, and moreover, you had grown accustomed to relying on them, living and depending on them for survival. You were already inseparable from one another in many things in life, so you miss them very much; this is the kind of state you are in. So what kind of state are you in now that you do not miss them? (I feel like leaving my home and doing my duty is the love of God, His salvation, which has enabled me to learn how to rely on Him. My corrupt disposition has changed somewhat, and my soul feels comforted; additionally, by recognizing God’s sovereignty, I know that the fates of all people are in His hands. They have their mission, and I have my mission, so I no longer miss them.) Is the problem resolved? (I feel like it is.) What does everyone think, is it resolved? (It is temporarily resolved.) It is temporarily resolved. If one day you were to run into a sister whose looks, tone of voice, or way of treating you is especially like your mother, or especially like your sister, how would you feel? (I would start to miss them again.) You would once again fall into the state of thinking of them, so the problem would not be resolved. So how do you solve this problem at its root? When you miss your loved ones, what are you missing? Usually when you miss someone, miss a loved one, or miss home, you certainly do not miss the things that made you sad; you miss the things that pleased you, the things that made you feel happy and good, and that you enjoyed, like how your mother used to take care of you, dote on you, and cherish you, or the nice things your father used to buy for you. You miss all these good things, so you cannot stop missing your loved ones. The more you think about your loved ones, the more you cannot give them up, and you cannot restrain yourself. Some people say: “After all these years I’ve never left my mother before. I follow her wherever she goes, I am the apple of her eye. How can I not miss her after having been gone so long?” Missing her is natural; this is just how people’s flesh is. Corrupt human beings live in their emotions. They think: “Only living this way is the semblance of a human. If I don’t even miss my loved ones, or think of them, or find sustenance in them, then am I even human? Would I not be the same as an animal?” Do people not think this way? If they have no affection or friendship, and they do not think of others, then others think they have no humanity and that they cannot live this way. Is this viewpoint correct? (No.) In fact, whether or not you miss your parents is not a big issue. It is not wrong to miss them, nor is it wrong to not miss them. Some people are highly independent, while some people are glued to their parents, but you have all been able to leave your homes and parents to do your duty. First of all, you do have the willingness to do your duty, the will to do your duty, the will to expend yourselves and cast things aside for God; but your difficulties cannot be solved with a single burst of effort, nor can you resolve your corrupt dispositions with a single burst of effort’s good deeds and good conduct. You do understand this doctrine, right? So how do you resolve the matter of missing your parents at its root? Some people have left home and been living independently for two or three years; they have already grown up, and do not miss their parents so much. Is the problem thus resolved? No. If you ask them who they are closest to, they reply with a textbook answer: “I am closest to God, God is dearest to me!” But in their hearts they think: “God is not at my side, nor is He able to take care of me. I am still closest to my mother. I come from her very flesh, she dotes on me the most, and she understands and comprehends me the most. When things are at their most difficult and bitter, my mother is always there to comfort, help, and care for me. Now, having left home, there is no one like my mother to take care of me when I am sick. You say God is good, but I cannot see His face, so where is He? That’s not practical.” They think it is not practical to rely on God, and their words about God being the closest to them are a little forced, a little hypocritical. In fact, in the depths of their heart, they think that their mother is closest to them. But why? “I believe in God because of the gospel spread to me by my mother; without her, I wouldn’t be here.” Do they not think this way? (They do.) Do you think such people understand the truth? (They do not.) Your mother merely gave birth to you and cared for you for twenty-some years. Can she grant you the truth? Can she grant you life? Can she save you from Satan’s influence? Can she cleanse your corrupt disposition? She cannot do any of these things. Parental grace and parental love are therefore severely limited. What can God do for you? God can grant people the truth, can save them from Satan’s influence and from death, and can grant them eternal life—is this not great love? This love is as high as the heavens and as deep as the earth. It is incredibly great: a hundred, no, a thousand times greater than the love of a parent. If people really come to know how great God’s love is, will they still feel so strongly about their parents? Will they still think about them all day long during New Year and holidays? If they understand the truth, they will think more about God’s love. If someone believes in God for years and still thinks that their parents’ love is greater than God’s, then that person is blind, and they have no faith in God at all. If someone believes in God, but does not pursue the truth, can they resolve their corrupt disposition? Can they attain salvation? They cannot. If your corrupt disposition has not been resolved and your spiritual life has not grown to a certain stature, then you can shout some slogans, but you will not be able to carry them out, because you do not have the stature. You can do things as great as you have the power to do. You can get through trials as great as you have the stature to endure. You can enter into as much of the truth reality as you can understand; that is how much of the truth reality you can live out. Correspondingly, it is also how much of the outpouring of your corrupt disposition and how many of your own difficulties you can solve; it is homologous.
One day, when you understand some of the truth, you will no longer think that your mother is the best person, or that your parents are the best people. You will realize that they are also members of the corrupt human race, and that their corrupt dispositions are all the same. All that sets them apart is the physical blood relationship with you. If they don’t believe in God, then they are the same as the unbelievers. You will no longer look at them from the perspective of a family member, or from the perspective of your fleshly relationship, but from the side of the truth. What are the main aspects you should look at? You should look at their views on belief in God, their views on the world, their views on handling matters, and most importantly, their attitudes toward God. If you assess these aspects accurately, you will be able to see clearly whether they are good or bad people. One day you may see clearly that they are people with corrupt dispositions just like you. It may be even clearer that they are not the kind-hearted people who have real love for you that you imagined them to be, nor are they able to lead you to the truth or onto the right path in life at all. You may see clearly that what they have done for you is of no great benefit to you, and that it is of no use to you in taking the right path in life. You may also find that many of their practices and opinions are contrary to the truth, that they are of the flesh, and that this makes you despise them, and feel aversion and hatred. If you come to see these things, you will then be able to treat your parents correctly in your heart, and you will no longer miss them, worry about them, or be unable to live apart from them. They have completed their mission as parents, so you will no longer treat them as the closest people to you or idolize them. Instead, you will treat them as ordinary people, and at that time, you will completely escape the bondage of emotions and truly emerge from your emotions and family affection. Once you’ve done that, you will realize that those things are not worth cherishing. At that point, you will see relatives, family, and fleshly relationships as stumbling blocks to understanding the truth, and to freeing yourself of emotions. It’s because you have that familial relationship with them—that fleshly relationship that paralyzes you, leads you astray, and makes you believe that they treat you the best, are the closest to you, care for you better than anyone, and love you the most—it’s all of this that makes you unable to clearly discern if they are good or bad people. Once you have truly walked away from these emotions, though you may still think of them from time to time, will you still miss them with all of your heart, dwell on them, and long for them the way you do now? You won’t. You won’t say: “The person I really can’t be without is my mother; she is the one who loves me, takes care of me, and cares for me the most.” When you have this level of perception, will you still cry when you think of them? No. This problem will be resolved. So with problems or matters that are causing you difficulty, if you haven’t gained that aspect of the truth and if you haven’t entered into that aspect of the truth reality, you will be trapped in such difficulties or states, and you will never be able to come out from them. If you treat these kinds of difficulties and problems as the key problems of life entry and then seek the truth to resolve them, then you will be able to enter into this aspect of the truth reality; unwittingly, you will learn your lesson from these difficulties and problems. When the problems are resolved, you will feel that you are not as close to your parents and family members, you will more clearly see their nature essence, and you will see what kind of people they truly are. When you see your loved ones clearly, you will say: “My mother does not accept the truth at all; she is actually sick of the truth and hates it. In her essence, she is an evil person, a devil. My father is a people-pleaser, standing on the side of my mother. He neither accepts nor practices the truth at all; he is not someone who pursues the truth. Based on my mother’s and father’s behavior, the two of them are nonbelievers; they are both devils. I have to completely forsake them, and draw clear boundaries with them.” In this way, you will stand on the side of the truth, and will be able to renounce them. When you are able to discern who they are, what kind of people they are, will you still have feelings for them? Will you still feel affection for them? Will you still have a fleshly relationship with them? You will not. Will you still need to restrain your emotions? (No.) So what do you actually rely on to resolve these difficulties? You rely on understanding the truth, on depending on God, and looking up to God. If you are clear on these things in your heart, then do you still need to restrain yourself? Do you still feel wronged? Do you still need to suffer such great pain? Do you still need others to fellowship with you and do ideological work? You do not, because you have already settled things yourself—it is a piece of cake. Coming back around, how do you resolve the issue of not wanting to think of or miss them? (Seek the truth to resolve it.) Those are big words that sound very official—but speak a little more practically. (Apply God’s words to see through to their essence; that is, discern them based on their essence. Then, we will be able to set aside our affection, and our fleshly relationship.) That’s right. You must base your discernment of people’s nature essence on the words of God. Without the revelation of the word of God, no one can see through to the nature essence of others. Only by being based in the words of God and the truth can one see through to people’s nature essence; only then can one solve the problem of human emotions at its source. Start first by leaving behind your affections and fleshly relationships; whoever your emotions are strongest for, that is who you should first analyze and discern. What do you think of this solution? (It’s good.) Some people say: “Discerning and analyzing the people for whom my feelings are strongest—that’s so callous!” The point of having you discern them is not so that you will sever relations with them—it is not so that you will cut off your parent-child relationships, nor is it so that you will totally forsake them, never to interact with them again. You should fulfill your responsibilities toward your loved ones, but you cannot be constrained or tangled up by them, because you are a follower of God; you must possess this principle. If you might still become constrained or tangled up by them, you cannot do your duty well, nor can you guarantee that you can follow God to the end of the road. If you were not a follower of God or lover of the truth, then no one would require this of you. Some people say: “I do not currently understand the truth; I do not know how to discern others.” If you do not have this stature, then set aside discernment for now. When your stature is sufficient, and you are able to pass through such trials, and to take the initiative yourself to practice this way, it will not be too late for you to practice this aspect of the truth.
Many people needlessly suffer emotionally; in fact, this is all unnecessary, useless suffering. Why do I say that? People are always constrained by their emotions, so they are unable to practice the truth and submit to God; in addition, being constrained by emotions is not at all beneficial to doing one’s duty or following God, and is moreover a huge obstacle to life entry. So, suffering the constraint of emotion has no meaning, and God does not remember it. So how do you free yourself from this meaningless suffering? You need to understand the truth, and see through to and understand the essence of these fleshly relationships; then it will be easy for you to be free of being constrained by the emotions of the flesh. Some people who believe in God are persecuted severely by their unbelieving parents; if they are not being forced to find a partner, they are being forced to find a job. They can do whatever they want, but they are not permitted to believe in God. Some parents even blaspheme against God, so these people see their parents’ true devilish colors. Only then do their hearts cry: “They truly are devils, so I cannot treat them as my loved ones!” Thenceforth, they are free from the constraints and fetters of their emotions. Satan wants to use affection to constrain and bind people. If people do not understand the truth, it is easy for them to be deceived. Quite often, for their parents’ and loved ones’ sake, they are unhappy, they cry, they endure hardships, and they make sacrifices. This is their benighted ignorance; they take it on the chin, and they reap what they sow. Suffering these things is without value—a futile effort that God will not remember at all—and one might say they are going through hell. When you really understand the truth and see through to their essence, you will become free; you will feel that your previous suffering was ignorant and benighted. You will not blame anyone else; you will blame your own blindness, your foolishness, and the fact that you did not understand the truth or see matters clearly. Is the problem of emotion an easy one to resolve? Have you resolved it? (Not yet. We have not yet practiced or entered into the path of practice that God has pointed out; it is just that we have a basis for reference when this kind of thing happens.) In saying all of this, whether speaking about practical matters, or about the things you have interpreted as paths, I am telling you: When you encounter this kind of thing, the best method for handling it is to pray to God and seek the truth, and then you will have a way to resolve it. When you have seen through to the essence of the emotions of the flesh, it will be easy for you to handle matters according to the truth principles. If you are always constrained by fleshly relationships with your loved ones, then you have no way to practice the truth; even if you understand doctrine and shout slogans, you will still be unable to solve your real problems. Some people simply do not know how to seek the truth. Others are able to seek the truth, but when people fellowship the truth clearly to them, they do not fully believe and are unable to totally accept it; they just listen to it as if it were doctrine. So, your problem of being constrained by your emotions can never be resolved; if it cannot be resolved, you can never emerge from within it, and you will continue to be constrained and bound. If you believe in God but are unable to follow Him or do the duty you ought to, then in the end, you will not be worthy of receiving God’s promise, until one day, you will fall into disaster and be punished—weeping and gnashing of teeth will be useless, and no one will be able to save you. Are you clear now on the consequences of not resolving corrupt dispositions?
What have we fellowshiped about today? We have fellowshiped about people’s states, their corrupt dispositions, as well as how to enter into the truth reality, how to correctly treat the matters that you encounter, what kind of viewpoints you ought to hold, and how to know, dissect, and resolve your own corrupt disposition. The lesson of life entry must always be learned; it is never too late to learn, or too late to start. So when is it too late? If you have died, then it is too late; if you are still alive, then it is not too late. Right now you are all alive, not dead, but are you really clear on what the living and the dead are? In English, people always say, “I’m still alive.” What does that mean? It is when you are at a loss when things happen to you, or you have been dragged into the tide of society, or you feel that you are degenerate, and then you prick yourself with a needle and can perceive it—then you will feel that you are still alive, that your heart has not yet died. If you are still alive, then you should have pursuits and live out the semblance of a human. Before, you were degenerate, you followed worldly things and you lived in a tide of wickedness; is it not time to pull yourself together now and avoid degenerating further? You see, Westerners have not found the true way, and they feel hopeless when it comes to human life and their lifestyle, so their words are filled with deep emotion, and have a sort of dejection and hopelessness—that is to say, a helpless mood—contained within. As they live, they often feel that they are not human, but they must live this way; even if they feel like ghosts, animals, or beasts, they must continue to live this way. What can be done? There is nothing they can do. If they do not die, then they must live this way; there is no other path for them, and they live pitiably. Are you all like this? If you are one day filled with deep emotion, thinking, “Ah, I’m still alive, my heart has not yet died”—if a person lives to that point, what will become of them? They are already in great danger! For a believer, this is already very dangerous. You absolutely cannot say something like “I am still alive, but my flesh is a shell, and I am a walking corpse. My heart is alive, and only the few desires and ideals in my heart are propping up my flesh.” Do not get to that point! If you get to that point, it will be very hard to save you. Looking at you all right now, your situations are not bad. If you read the word of God to an unbeliever, they will not gain any awareness; so if I now use severe words to prune and deal with you, will you be at all conscious of it? (Yes.) Some of you only come to a knowledge of yourselves after being pruned and dealt with; only then do you feel remorse. This means you are still conscious, and your hearts have not yet fully died, which proves that you are still awake, still alive! If you can accept the truth and put it into practice, then you have a hope of being saved. If someone gets to the point that they simply will not accept the truth, then they have fully died, and they are beyond saving. There are more than a few people in the church who simply will not accept the truth. Although these people are breathing, they actually have no spirits. They are the spiritless dead, walking corpses. Such people have been completely exposed and cast out.
October 5, 2016