I obtained the Fa in the first week of July of 1999.

In February 2002, I went to Beijing to meet other practitioners on Tiananmen Square for a peaceful protest. It seemed that the entire square was filled with security agents on that day of our planned gathering. As the time for our gathering approached, I saw that practitioners were getting arrested on the square. It looked hopeless to carry out our plan. I was alone and needed to make a choice: should I just go home safely, or should I use this opportunity to validate the Fa? I asked, can I really step forward and risk everything for the truth? Yes. I stood alone in front of the Monument to the People's Heroes and unfurled a large banner.

After arresting me, they moved me to a room in the basement of a hotel. In that dark room, I was surrounded by police and interrogated and threatened for hours. They tried to convince me to give up Falun Gong. In that evil environment, I experienced the power of sending righteous thoughts. While in detention for many hours I wanted to be fully conscious at all times and didn't sleep. While awake in the middle of the night, it dawned on me that although I was a U.S. citizen, I might not be able to return home safely. For the first time while in China, I became deeply afraid about the possibility of being tortured. I carefully reexamined my faith in the Fa and became more rational, and overcame much of my fear. I vowed to cultivate more solidly. On the following day, I was expelled from China and headed back home.

After getting a small taste of the persecution in China, I had deeper respect for the main body of practitioners who are cultivating and clarifying the truth in such a harsh environment.

It was good to be back home safely in the U.S. Although I had risked everything in China, I still had a long way to go in cultivation.

It seems that cultivating in this complicated ordinary society is much harder than giving up one's life. In this comfortable life where immediate benefits and temptations are all around, I have occasionally slacked off. I didn't always measure myself according to the Fa. Too often, I have measured my self with the principles of ordinary people.

We must always strive to do better and better according to the Fa to save as many people as possible. And we must do all of this while properly balancing the three things with our ordinary life.

I'd like to share with you how I improved in cultivation and where I have failed and need to improve.

Over a year ago, when the Washington, DC newspaper was getting started, I hesitated to take on responsibilities for the paper.

At the time, I was delivering the Chinese paper twice a week while maintaining a demanding full-time job and occasionally spent long hours helping with various other Dafa work. And I felt that I was already doing a lot.

I was measuring myself like an ordinary person instead of strictly measuring myself with the requirements of the Fa. Actually, I was attached to the little bit of comfort and freedom I was enjoying at the time. And I didn't want to commit to what seemed like another part-time job.

One of our most serious problems with the newspaper has been and still is the lack of resources and the number of dedicated staff members. I was concerned for the future of the paper in the Washington, DC area. I used to rely on others to resolve this. But after a while, I realized it wasn't right to rely on others. I should walk my own path. So, I asked myself: what more can I do? I knew that I can do more if I sacrifice more of my freedom and spare time. It was a painful process to give up even a little bit of this attachment. Only when I let go of more of this attachment, was I able to do more for the paper.

In the face of challenges and uncertainties of how to manage and operate a newspaper business, I was initially frustrated by the level of support from our local practitioners in contributing to the success of the paper in Washington, DC. Then I realized that everyone must walk their own path. If others don't help, it's not right for me to get upset thinking: how then can we get this done? I shouldn't rely on others to walk my path. In the face of difficulties, when I look inside myself, I often realize what more I can do. Sometimes, even when a goal initially seemed impossible to achieve, I have later experienced that it can be achieved with faith and guidance from the Fa.

Of course, certain things really need to be coordinated and require teamwork. And when practitioners don't work well with me, I still shouldn't get upset. Anything that upsets me is an indication of an attachment and a good opportunity to cultivate. When I look inside myself, I can often find attachments in me. Sometimes, I can see multiple interrelated attachments. Sometimes, I simply didn't communicate things well because I was not diligent enough with an excuse that I'm too busy to explain. When I put in the time and effort to explain things clearly and deeply, then cooperation tends to improve.

In the past, when serious difficulties developed, I considered quitting. I was sometimes thinking like an ordinary person trying to avoid pain or pursuing comfort. Actually, there is no use in running away from a problem. The attachment and karma will follow me wherever I go. When I feel pain from a conflict, isn't that due to some attachment? Isn't this a great chance to recognize and let go of attachments and upgrade xinxing? After coming to terms with this, when difficulties arise, I no longer have serious thoughts about quitting.

The Washington, DC edition is a weekly paper, and we have multiple deadlines every week. The process of reporting, editing, layout, proofing, and delivery have to be done correctly in order to produce and deliver a quality paper each week. Sometimes, I don't feel like doing a certain task. But that is just a human feeling. As a cultivator, I don't rely on my human feelings as much as I use to. When a task needs to be done, with a clear focus of what I'm doing and the good reason for why, I simply make a choice to get it done, regardless of how I feel.

When I have strong faith in the Fa and righteous thoughts, I can really take suffering as joy.

Importance of Being Diligent

I have made significant progress in cultivation over the years and accomplished some things. However, certain attachments and old habits still persist.

For a long time, I have been prioritizing things I need to do. And often, I neglected things that I considered to be very low priority with the excuse that the important things were being properly handled and that the minor things shouldn't cause serious problems. Many of these low priority things were related to my ordinary work and family. After some time, these things that I regarded as being low priority accumulated into problems that started to get serious.

These problems are actually an indication of a larger problem in my cultivation. I have not been diligent in all aspects of cultivation.

In my cultivation, I diligently worked hard on removing attachments that seemed serious. However, I slacked off in removing attachments that seemed minor. I used to think that they are not serious problems and that I'll always have enough chance to eliminate such trivial attachments in the future. Due to this slacking off in cultivation, I didn't use every minute of available time wisely.

This slacking off in cultivation, even with things that I felt were minor aspects of my character, is serious. This seems to degrade the quality of my whole xinxing.

Also, I didn't practice the exercises regularly, using the excuse that I was too busy. On some days, it's arguable that I really don't have time to do the exercises. But I have no excuse for not doing the exercises for weeks at a time.

I often felt tired. With a tired body, I have not been using my time efficiently and wasted precious time. This led to not having enough time to balance things well between my full-time job, family, and even certain truth clarification projects.

Also, with a tired body, the quality of my Fa study and sending righteous thoughts degraded as well. It seems that doing the exercises is an integral part of doing the three things well.

A practitioner suggested that I do less for the paper to resolve this issue.

But that's not acceptable. There was already a lack of dedicated staff members. How could I consider doing less?

I need to do better in everything. I stand before practitioners to declare that I will improve.

Truth and Compassion

I used to wonder why Master told us that all that we do in Fa-rectification is really for our own selves. This seems to contradict Compassion and saving others without condition. Why did Master tell us this? Is it a test?

After the persecution broke out in China in 1999, during the time when Master was not heard from, many practitioners selflessly clarified the truth. I also clarified the truth while making sacrifices without any conditions and without thoughts of gaining from Dafa.

So, for a long time, I thought that I can be just as diligent in cultivation and truth clarification for the sake of others without any benefits for myself. However, my past performance in cultivation shows that I'm not so pure. I can sacrifice a great deal for others without condition, but can I really give it my all to save people? Can I really use every good opportunity and every available minute of my life to save people? I have often slacked off with attachments to my own comfort and freedom, thinking: "It's alright to focus on doing the major things, besides I've already done so much."

The Fa can motivate us and help us to be more diligent, not just to save our own selves, but also to save countless sentient beings.

I realize now that Master was being very compassionate by teaching us the Fa about how we are actually doing Fa-rectification things for ourselves and the terrible consequences if we fail to do well. Master is not merely testing us. He is really trying to save us all by revealing more of the truth.

Now, I have a deeper understanding of what is meant by the "greatest mercy" and "infinite grace" during Fa-rectification.

This is just my limited understand at my current level.


I have been cultivating for seven years. And a few times, I developed some painful doubts about the Fa because I was attached to some human notions. And each time, I emerged with a greater faith in Dafa. The Fa is harmonious and has the greatest power to explain life and the universe. When I obtained the Fa years ago, I knew that I found the truth that I was looking for all my life. And I have found it again and again in the course of cultivation. The truth was in front of me all those years.