The Young Dafa Practitioner in My Home
Many problems we encounter in educating young Dafa practitioners are actually caused by our adult attachments. My daughter is also a practitioner and she is now 14 years old. Today I look back at her progress and surprisingly find that it is a reflection of my cultivation progress and the improvement of my xinxing. It was very painful sometimes. But most of the time, I experienced Teacher's tremendous benevolence.
When my child was young, I often took her to group Fa-study and let her participate in the large-scale Fa spreading activities. She acted like a practitioner, saying, "Hardship is a good thing." Since 1999, we have lost the environment of group Fa-study. In 2000, I went to Beijing to appeal for justice for Falun Gong and was constantly harassed by the police after I returned home. My family members who did not practice would not allow me to take my child to study the Fa again. They frequently repeated the lies broadcast on TV to her and deceived her, saying, "Do not listen to your mother. Your mother went to Beijing because she did not want you any more." My child was really scared and refused to listen to anything I said. She was six years old at the time.
During the following few years, I practiced on and off. I knew Dafa was good and I did not want to give it up, but I had little desire to study the Fa. Most of the time I struggled. My daughter went to school and she started to accept the lies from the school's textbooks.
But compassionate Teacher gave me hints again and again. Finally in 2004, I started to study Zhuan Falun again. I received a hand-written copy of truth-clarifying material from a practitioner and learned how to go to the Minghui website (Chinese version of Clearwisdom.net). I started to practice Dafa again. I started to clarify the truth to my child, but with strong attachments. I wished she could return to cultivation so we could cultivate diligently together, since there were no other practitioners around. With this attachment, every time I tried to talk to her, it turned into a fight. After the Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party was published, I tried to persuade her to quit the Young Pioneers. But she did not agree. I looked inward and I found I had the attachment of sentiment. I did not want my child to be hurt. I was never so anxious when I clarified the truth to others. I also had the attachments of showing off and competitiveness, trying to persuade my daughter to be on my side. It seemed like I had found many of my attachments, but things still did not change. What was wrong?
My cultivation state was not good. I felt no excitement in cultivating and I saw so many cases of persecution that my fear made me lose confidence in cultivation. Could I break through this huge tribulation? I could not even get this former young practitioner to understand the truth, so who else could I clarify the truth to? My attachment to getting results was generating a huge tribulation, which I could not pass. I really felt I had come to a dead end and there was no way to go further. Should I just give up?
"Study the Fa"--that was the only thing I could think of at that moment. In regards to leading my child to study the Fa, I had the thought of not pushing her anymore. With a firm belief in Teacher and the Fa, I thought that if my child can become a practitioner, Teacher will help her (I think it was my righteous thought at that time). Just two days later, my child asked me, "Mother, could you please help me quit the Young Pioneers?" I was very happy and immediately published the announcement for her. After that, she started to read truth-clarifying materials and "Minghui Weekly," listen to Minghui Radio, and so on. She also started to study the Fa and read Hong Yin and Hong Yin II.
In the beginning, my daughter did not spend a lot of time studying. At first she read one of Teacher's poems every month, then later she could read one each week. Finally, she could read Hong Yin II three times in one day. The whole process lasted about two years. During that time, it was always me who asked her to study and she just passively followed my directions. During those two years, compassionate Teacher showed her many miraculous things. For example, her academic marks improved and a fever disappeared in one day when she went through a tribulation (this had never happened before). She also believed in the Fa more and more.
She was still in the passive state of Fa-study. She never did the exercises and only studied the Fa before a school exam or when she felt physically uncomfortable. She even bargained with me about my assignment of Fa-study to her. I was very angry and frequently spoke harshly to her. I said that she did not deserve to be a young Dafa disciple and she should give up and go back to being an everyday person. I also said Teacher would be very sad because of practitioners like her. I was not behaving like a practitioner. Even worse, when I got very angry, I slapped her. I would shout at her, "Do you want to cultivate the Fa or not? Tell me seriously." I did not want to waste tremendous time and effort on her. Now when I recall this, I realize I was scared. If she really gave up cultivation, it would be a serious sin for me.
This young practitioner was very patient. When I yelled at her, she never said a word; instead, she just listened to me. I paid attention to my appearance when I was in front of other practitioners or regular people. But in front of her, I did not care. She became my target to release my anger. She reminded me, "What you tell me also applies to you." I suddenly realized my mistakes. But after that, I made the same mistakes again. It was very painful. I told her, "I am also a practitioner and I also have many human notions. If I cannot control my anger and yell at you again, please use the wooden stick to knock the bed frame or the cup. Then I will realize that you are not fighting back. Instead, you will remind me and make my mind clear." We agreed to cultivate diligently together.
I really appreciate Teacher's arrangement of letting such a good practitioner walk beside me. During that period, the sound of knocking on the bed frame or cup frequently came out of my home. She never abused this right. Every time I did not control my xinxing, she knocked. Sometimes when she knocked the cup and walked toward me, I said, "Stop knocking and get away. What if I just stop talking?" I actually did not cultivate well and each time it took a long time for me to pass my xinxing test. Now I recall that I have not heard the sound of knocking cups for almost two years. It was only through writing this article that both my daughter and I remembered this experience.
In 2006, she started to recite Zhuan Falun and study Teacher's new articles. She began to study the Fa for two hours every day. During the winter and on summer vacations, she practiced the exercises at home every day using the 30-minute exercise tape. When the new semester started, she got up at 5:10 every morning and studied the Fa until 5:45. Then she ate breakfast and went to school. She sometimes sent forth righteous thoughts at six o'clock, sometimes not. Every day she used paper money on which was written facts regarding the truth of Dafa and clarified the truth to her classmates. The environment in her class was very good. If anyone received a bill with truth-clarifying words on it, he/she would tell others the content. With this young practitioner's lead, her many classmates all wanted to see it. When some student who did not know the truth tore up the bill, other students would surround him/her and condemn the behavior.
I think as adult practitioners, we must do the three things well and cultivate ourselves well. This is the key to leading young practitioners well. We should not look down on young practitioners. Their minds are less distracted and very pure. They sometimes love to play, and we should also look at this with compassion. When we just started to practice Dafa, we had many human notions and did not cultivate diligently. We repeatedly asked Teacher questions that we would be ashamed to ask now. Our compassionate Teacher answered our shallow questions again and again with patience. He did not look down on us. With Teacher's protection and help, we have walked our paths. We do not have any right to accuse young practitioners of anything. Even when we spend a lot of effort on the young, compared to Teacher, our efforts are so little. Leading the children well is our great responsibility. We must look inward and cultivate ourselves well in order to lead them well.
This is my personal understanding. If there is anything improper, please kindly point it out.
September 25, 2008