My Journey to the World of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance
It is now three years since I started learning Falun Dafa. I am now a student in an art college in Ukraine. Not long ago, a strong wish came to my mind: I wanted to introduce Falun Dafa to people through various artistic forms such as pictures and platform design, etc, which are familiar to and can be comprehended by ordinary people. I eagerly hoped to show people the tremendous influence that practicing Falun Dafa has brought to my art. I wanted to express my feeling and understanding of Dafa through my paintings, and thus exhibit the magnificence of Falun Dafa.
In the process of developing the painting series, the initial pleasant feeling of airiness and elegance brought forth by this idea gradually transformed into something more solid. I sensed that cultivation is important, sacred, and means more than any pursuit in my life. I recalled the compassion that Dafa and practitioners have been spreading to people, all the best that Master has provided to us, and my infinite gratitude. I embodied all of these in my designs. During that period of time, I often failed to maintain my xinxing. I realized I had so many weaknesses. I felt I was alienated from sacredness and that Master would be sad to see me. The feeling of shame and the pain made me strive forward more vigorously.
Owing to these realizations, I stressed studying the Fa more and the new articles. I knew very surely that this would be good for me and others, and could not be superseded by drawing many paintings. Our Master wants us to cultivate ourselves first so we can better accomplish Dafa work. Master said, "You can't do Dafa work without studying the Fa, or it would be an everyday person doing Dafa work. It has to be Dafa disciples who do Dafa work-- this is the requirement for you." ("Teaching the Fa at the Washington D.C. International Fa Conference," Guiding the Voyage) At this time, I felt extremely relaxed, and sent forth righteous thoughts every hour.
I was very excited when I decided to produce an opera platform design named "Journey to the World of Truthfulness, Compassion and Forbearance" as my academic project of this semester because I could utilize the special skills that I had learned to unfold the magnificence of Dafa in the human world to many people, including the students, professors and fellows of this college.
I started my design and fabrication confidently. My ideas were well accepted by the advisors. Much to my surprise, however, I began to become gradually confused. The form of disturbance was very subtle. It was not very easy to recognize the real faces of this confusion because they also appeared to "make sense." I recalled the paragraph in Zhuan Falun about "karmic obstacles." (Lecture Six, "Your Zhu Yishi Should Predominate") I strengthened my main consciousness to dispel them. After a short period of time, the disturbance disappeared itself. I almost forgot about it, and continued my design work.
On May 13, World Falun Dafa Day, I held a small exhibition with 12 pictures. I was encouraged by how people were influenced by these paintings. People gave very positive comments; they also read Master's poems on the paintings. Looking at the heavenly beauties carrying words of "Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance," and listening to my interpretation, they all correctly recognized Dafa and accepted it. They seemed to see Dafa's beauty and purity through the wisdom that I had obtained from Dafa.
I told people that my painting became more beautiful after practicing Dafa because Dafa helped me to find my own artistic style. It was Dafa that led me to realize the meaning and values that my art should portray. Dafa's principle, truthfulness-compassion- forbearance, is so mind-awakening. How beautiful these words are. Using the principle as subject matter, how many beautiful, shining and pure pictures can be made? It will bring people endless happiness, and make them willing to unfold the kindness in their hearts. People all agreed with my thoughts and sincerely wished me success.
My artistic design was put on exhibition two weeks later. I made the preparations very happily. I had a deep belief that my design would be loved by all of the people because it was a combination of intrinsic and extrinsic beauty. However, I still encountered some tests before the exhibition. When the major part of my design was decorated on the platform, one of my male classmates put forward his opinions in a very offensive way because he was not in a good mood. He is an admirer of modern art. He said a lot of bad words as though he were trying to let me understand my design was useless. He even said he could not tolerate looking at it. What he said was totally beyond my imagination. I was shocked, and felt sad. It was not because of my design techniques, but because of the incorrect way he recognized Dafa. I realized the serious degeneration of human concepts about beauty and arts nowadays. I also found my own attachments of indecisiveness and fear of loss of reputation. I told myself that if they thought in that way, they might be right, at least in some aspects. My classmate is a lover of modern art-- he does not like anything that does not belong to modern art. I tried hard to explain to him the internal meaning of my design. I believe the primary task of Dafa disciples is to treat people who are lost with compassion-- to use wisdom and compassion to guide them to the right path. The task of Dafa disciples is complex and tough-- to help others to know Dafa, and to help them accept Dafa from the heart. I tried hard to explain to my classmate the meaning of my artistic design in these days. I told him why I used this name for my design and what I wanted to express through it. Interestingly enough, within less than a minute after I started to discuss with a female classmate (a Dafa practitioner, too) why this situation occurred, the male classmate walked toward me and apologized for his misconduct.
When I talked to that male classmate and others, I told them why good behavior was so important, because our mistakes would also negatively influence the people around us. I would try my best to minimize and correct my mistakes and misconduct. As a result, a lot of famous artists and sculptors as well as the professors in the college had a chance to know Falun Dafa and Dafa's principle of truthfulness-compassion-forbearance. A prestigious sculptor, Mr. B. Z. Vuchetich (the creator of the sculpture "Homeland - Mother" and the monument, "Founders of Kiev") gave a very high appraisal of my creation. He said he has not seen such a beautiful design since he joined the organizing committee of the college.
I hope all Dafa practitioners can strive forward vigorously. Thank you for reading this article. Should there be anything inappropriate, please kindly point it out for further rectification.