Sharing on Organizing the "Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance" Art Exhibition
(Clearwisdom.net) Several years ago, there were plans to present the "Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance" Art Exhibition in Austria and to enlist practitioners to help at the exhibit. At the time, I was not interested in participating since I knew nothing about fine art. It was not until a practitioner approached me about the exhibit that I began to consider if there was a suitable location in the city where I live. I immediately thought of a place and wanted to find out more about it.
At the same time I realized the responsibility that came with it and was afraid that my inability to clarify the truth properly might ruin the art exhibit, therefore I postponed inquiring about the exhibit location for a while. However, when I understood the power of the Fa, I was able to conquer my attachment of fear and visited the Department of Cultural Affairs. At first, I was very nervous, and I talked about the art exhibit in a loquacious and ambiguous manner. I also attempted to include all kinds of information into the conversation. Nevertheless, the gentleman that I talked to did not seem too interested, and was merely glancing at the schedule for the days that are available for the rental of the gallery. I felt relieved as soon as I walked out, and I recognized later that I lacked confidence in myself, but more importantly I did not have enough faith in Dafa and Teacher.
When a practitioner suggested that we should solicit supporters for the art exhibit, I saw what was blocking me. I'm a person who does not like to ask for help. But for the sake of the art exhibit, I went with another practitioner to meet with my neighbor who is a community councilman. When we mentioned our plans for the art exhibit, he immediately took out his cellphone, called a city councilwoman (also a member of the national assembly) who is in charge of cultural affairs, and informed her about our proposal. We made an appointment to meet with her and had an in-depth and relaxing discussion. The result of our meeting was good. She planned to extend the exhibit longer than our original request of three days. We decided that we would be responsible for all the expenses in connection with the art exhibit, and the artwork would be displayed at the City Hall's exhibition gallery the following January.
Once we booked the location, we began the preparation work. I was on the road almost every day for several weeks, arranging speakers for the opening ceremony, sending out invitations and advertisements, and inviting the media and informing them about the art exhibit. My son accompanied me on the road the entire time, without any complaints. Thus I witnessed the power of the Fa.
One time I walked into a coffee shop to request permission to post an art exhibit poster, and a customer suddenly and bluntly asked if it had anything to do with Falun Gong. I was taken by surprise because most people here have not heard of Falun Gong. So I asked him where he heard of Falun Gong, and he replied that he had learned about it through his job. My heartbeat went wild because I sensed his abrupt and critical attitude, and because I had identified myself as a representative of the "Arts and Culture Exchange Association" (Verein Ars Cara) rather than as a Falun Gong practitioner. Yet I tried to remain calm and continued to talk and to explain to him that we had established this cultural association to showcase the art exhibition.
Just as I easily refuted his misunderstandings on Falun Gong, he dragged me into another debate. He asked me why don't we rebel against the persecution, as otherwise nothing will change. When he began to discuss political issues, I did not know how to respond, thus I changed the subject and clarified the truth about Falun Gong, hoping to change his opposing stance. At the end of the conversation, he even asked to receive the Austrian Falun Dafa Information Center's monthly newsletter. I was exhausted when I left the coffee shop, but pleased that I was finally able to eliminate this person's negative views about Dafa.
That debate completely exhausted my energy and I did not know how to rejuvenate myself. I should have practiced the exercises to recover the energy as soon as I went home, but I completely ignored it and fell into an ordinary person's mentality. As a result, I was not able to accomplish certain tasks in a diligent manner and reach the targeted results.
For example, I had set goals to deliver the invitations in person but I was not able to accomplish that. It was also important to participate in conference calls to share about the art exhibit. But during the first exhibit, I had selfish thoughts and did not think there was much to discuss, so I did not participate in the conference calls. I also now realize that I was resisting any criticism and suggestions for improvement because I was afraid of being hurt. During the second art exhibit however, I understood that there were important and valuable suggestions for improvement at every conference call sharing.
Once I let go of self, I recognized that our practice group is one entity and every practitioner should take into consideration other Fa validating projects.
During the first art exhibit, many local and regional newspapers reported about it. Those who attended the exhibit were deeply moved by the artwork. Many people sensed that the entire gallery was amid a sacred atmosphere.
The second art exhibit in our city lasted from January to February. This event was arranged by the Department of Cultural Affairs and a very small amount of money was spent.
After reviewing the two art exhibits, I noticed there were many newspapers that advertised the first exhibit and even more newspapers reported after the second art exhibit was over. A television program about the exhibit was also produced. The two exhibits seemed to be one whole entity.
I felt that the artwork was very moving. Because some of my acquaintances could not attend the opening ceremony, I became their docent when they came to the exhibit. The first time I gave the docent tour, I was not sure what to say, but I knew I would find the appropriate words to explain the artworks when the time came. Sure enough, words flowed out of my mouth fluently, and I was able to apply my knowledge and vocabulary that I had never used previously to explain the artworks. The Fa emerged from my heart, and I was able to touch my friends' hearts.
Every time I have a deep conversation with someone about the persecution and explain what is Falun Gong, I feel connected to an infinite source of energy and immersed in the Fa. The art exhibition helped me greatly, and it provided me with a perfect opportunity to clarify the truth about Falun Gong from all angles, from the beauty of cultivation to the cruelty of the persecution. Like the Chinese New Year Spectacular, the art exhibition is a Fa instrument that Teacher placed in our hands to save sentient beings.
I'd like to express my understanding of the importance of the art exhibition, and plead and encourage everyone to take notice and find an appropriate venue to showcase the "Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance" Art Exhibition.