I am Now a Falun Dafa Practitioner
I am a 30-year-old Swedish practitioner who has been practicing Dafa for one year. During my childhood I was in contact with literature dealing with supernatural phenomena. My parents were also interested in those things but they were not what you would call religious people. I could tell that it was my father who had the most interest in the Christian church.
I missed something that was divine and pure during my time growing up. I felt that the so-called religions and the church were not true or completely genuine. Even still I hoped somewhere inside of me that there would be a life after this and something better than what you would see in our society. I tried to adapt to this world and do what everyone else did, but most of the time things went wrong. I felt I was an outsider and was often exploited because I was too kind.
When I was nineteen, I was approached on the street by two people from the Church of Christ, a group who tried as best they could to live according to Jesus' teachings. They were often called a sect. I felt what they did both interesting and terrifying. Sometimes they might be too fanatical, but there was a genuine desire among most of them to practice the teachings of Jesus and to elevate their moral standard. I was attracted to them somehow. I participated for 2-1/2 years, until all the work wore me out. I worked days at my regular job and joined church activities and did evangelizing in the evenings. Everything proceeded at a furious tempo, and I never achieved any peace and quiet, no harmony with what I was doing. During this period, I thought a lot about Eastern philosophies and daydreamed about the simple life in the Chinese rural areas, the closeness to nature and the characteristic of the universe. I was longing for a meditative calmness to give me the energy to be a good person and to be different from ordinary people in society.
I left the church, but I did not leave my longing for the divine. I just could not cope with the pace and effort in that form. For a while I lived isolated from friends and social life. I did work, of course, but in my free time I liked to be by myself and to find a little peace. During this time I did not even have a telephone at home.
It was not until I borrowed a book with a blue cover from the library that I seriously grabbed hold of cultivation to the divine again. The book was China Falun Gong. The elevation of my heart nature has progressed steadily since then. In the beginning when I read the book and practiced at home, many tribulations arose with my girl friend, family, and friends, and most things seemed to go wrong. I lost much of my commitment but continued to hang on in a small scale. Last summer I found a Falun Dafa group of like-minded people to practice with, and it felt very good. Now I started to feel that things were happening in my body. Last autumn I was at home from work for one week. During that period, I read through Zhuan Falun. I had some physical reactions in my body, but they were over very soon. However, I noticed that as soon as I started to have bad thoughts, the pains would start again.
In my experience there are big differences between Falun Dafa and the Church of Christ. The greatest difference is that within Falun Dafa there is not so much social control: it is one's own responsibility. I could say that it is more divine than human. Furthermore, we have the exercises, which strengthen the energy-mechanisms: "The Fa cultivates the practitioner." In every fiber of the body it feels that this is something strong and genuine. With this method, you don't have to exhaust yourself with human efforts but follow what is natural.
During autumn, I learned about Fa-rectification, so I am now sending forth righteous thoughts and studying Zhuan Falun, translating articles, clarifying the truth to people by handing out materials, and talking to the Chinese people who live in my city. Many Chinese people stop to listen to us and talk with us about Falun Dafa.
I feel it easier and easier now to talk about Falun Dafa with people at my work and with my friends. They ask me what I do in my spare time, and I tell them that I translate articles and cultivate Falun Dafa. Often they become curious and ask more questions, and I answer them as best I can from my understanding. Sometimes, when I feel I am talking too high to them, I feel a pressure against my forehead. At least, that is my interpretation. If it is meant to be, they will read the book and listen to Master Li's lectures. I wish they would have the same chance as me to return to the divine and leave the triple-world for good.
When I first heard about how Falun Dafa was persecuted in China I felt really awful. How could something sick like that happen? I rejected it at the beginning, due to fear and a lack of understanding. Now my resistance has disappeared, thanks to the Dafa websites and the article bank on Clearharmony Net. I download articles that I can translate, an easy way for me to contribute to the end of the persecution.
I am not as fearful now to stand up for Falun Dafa, even when I talk to aggressive people who slander Falun Dafa and scold me for interfering in Chinese matters. Right now we are paying visits to Chinese people living in our city to clarify the truth to them about Dafa.
When I heard about the Chinese Embassy's smear campaign, I thought it would die by itself, because, at least in Westerners' eyes, its accusations were so absurd.. But not so to many Chinese eyes. I have met some Chinese people who have accepted the propaganda blindly. I have tried to explain to them that we Dafa-practitioners are good people and not at all as portrayed by the Chinese government. They were very stubborn, saying it was the difference between Swedish and Chinese practitioners. I told them, "There is no difference. We are reading the same book and have the same teacher."
Would I give this up?! All of my life I have given up and haven't completed anything except my education and getting a driver's license. Sometimes I am afraid that I will not reach consummation and will give up. I gave up my cultivation once, and it frightens me. I know that fear is a human notion. I will do my best to give up only my human notions and not my Dafa-cultivation.