(Clearwisdom.net) When I recently read the "Minghui Weekly," one article stood out. It stated that the inability of Dafa disciples to end the already eight-year-long persecution is a disgrace. This opinion seemed too harsh to me. I thought this persecution to be unavoidable because of the existence of the old cosmic forces as well as the still-cultivating Dafa disciples. However, a recent incident made think that the persecution of Dafa disciples is indeed a humiliation, is a disgrace to Dafa, and has caused a huge negative impact on our efforts to offer sentient beings salvation. "Clarifying the facts" and saving people does not require the existence of the persecution.

1. The persecution of Dafa disciples plays a negative role in our efforts to save sentient beings

A few days ago I went a hospital to see a young girl who has suffered from diabetes since the age of ten. She is the daughter of one of my husband's colleagues. Before I left for the hospital I told my husband we would clarify the facts about Falun Gong after we got there. In past efforts, when the effect was good, my husband would help me with the truth clarification. But if the effect was not good, once we returned home he would say something negative. For example, he had said, "Why should we try to clarify the facts to them? They do not believe. They might report us. We could be arrested and suffer persecution."

I said to the girl at the hospital, "Let me tell you something amazing: you will recover from your illness by believing that Falun Dafa is good!" The girl said without hesitation, "Our teacher said we should not believe in superstition." I told her, "This teacher does not understand. I have practiced Falun Gong for almost ten years. Based on my experience, I tell you that Falun Gong is not a superstition, and Falun Dafa is good." I also told her that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) considers Falun Gong superstition, because the CCP advocates atheism and does not believe in gods. I told her that a person is entitled to his or her own belief.

Besides the girl and her mother there was also a 29-month-old boy in the room. The boy's grandmothers from both sides of the family were there to take care of him. The boy's maternal grandmother said she believes in Buddha. She asked me what I believed. I responded that I believe in Falun Gong. The boy's paternal grandma said she did not object to people having beliefs, but she did not agree with anyone believing in Falun Gong. She also said to me, "Have you gone astray in a demonic way?"

I felt that her mind was deeply poisoned by the CCP propaganda. I told her, "Falun Gong is not at all what you have said. People from 80 countries around the world are practicing Falun Gong." She asked me if I had seen them practicing and then began to rant non-stop about Falun Gong. She said there was a practitioner at her place of work who did not take care of her family and grown child and did not allow her child to go to a university, which had already accepted her child based on good recommendations. She said that the practitioner was arrested several times, was sent to a forced labor camp, and did not listen to any advice.

The old lady further mentioned that the practitioner also went to her home to talk about the bad things the CCP did and gave her a VCD. The old lady wanted to report this practitioner to the police, but her son stopped her. The old lady continued, saying that she did not know where the practitioner went, and all of the practitioner's family had disappeared. The old lady had retired, but the CCP still paid her an allowance. If Master (she called out Master's name) would give her so much money per month, she would also start to practice Falun Gong.

I sent righteous thoughts mentally while occasionally saying a few words to counteract her accusations. I said to her, "Who would ever want to be arrested or detained? That is persecution. What mother does not want her children to go to a university? I do not know the details about these circumstances, but I know for sure that this happened for a reason. The CCP still pays you an allowance after your retirement. But who pays an allowance to those many farmers who have worked so hard all their lives?"

The older woman (the maternal grandmother) who believes in Buddha asked us to stop arguing. I sensed that arguing further with this confrontational woman would be counter-productive, because she was almost irrational. I then said, "Madam, please remember that no matter what, it was for your benefit that that practitioner went to your home to tell you those facts."

I stopped talking but still sent forth righteous thoughts. That argumentative woman also stopped. I stopped arguing with her because I was worried that any argument would push her to the opposite side. Instead, I talked to the girl's mother about improvements in my health after I started my cultivation, the benefits my whole family has received from Dafa, my performance in my position at work, and the positive acknowledgment of my work performance in my job. I talked about these things to let that woman see the genuine demeanor of a Dafa disciple.

Before I left, I again asked the girl and her mother to remember that Dafa is good. I also tried to persuade the girl's mother to withdraw from the CCP and its affiliated organizations. On the way home, my husband said, "That old woman will definitely say something about you." I said that it would be nice if she really wanted to say something, as what I had revealed was the goodness of Dafa.

Once at home again I thought it over. The old woman's train of thought was the result of her mind being poisoned by CCP propaganda. I did not know how the practitioners at her place of work had behaved and lived. It seemed that the way in which the practitioner and her family had been persecuted had caused the old lady to have negative feelings about Falun Gong, which made her unwilling to learn the facts about the persecution. I felt very bad.

2. Having been persecuted is a disgrace to Dafa practitioners

Recently I met a practitioner who had been arrested and then released after ten days of detention. We did not talk too much. She said that she considered the arrest a personal disgrace. Her words squarely touched on the topic I had thought about.

After the persecution began on July 20, 1999, our cultivation has transitioned from personal cultivation to Fa-rectification period cultivation, as Master had told us. I could not initially tell whether many of the tribulations I encountered were for the improvement of my personal cultivation or due to the persecution of the old forces. I usually thought about what was going on from the perspective of my personal cultivation and elimination of my attachments. Sometimes I acquiesced and acknowledged the persecution and even thought that enduring the persecution was a reflection of our great forbearance.

In 2000, when I was illegally held in a detention center, those in charge tortured the practitioners by forcing them to stay in the painful position known as "flying an airplane". Some practitioners compared this torture to Han Xin's enduring the humiliation of crawling between someone's legs. Many practitioners were arrested during the second half of 2000. Some of them even told the authorities the names of fellow practitioners with whom they had frequent contact. They thought that stepping out meant going to detention centers. They regarded the detention centers as temples. So they thought that they went to the detention centers to cultivate and improve themselves. Remembering this thought, I indeed feel that it was a disgrace to Dafa.

Master said:

"Your path is, and I think you've all seen this now, actually very narrow. If you deviate just a little bit you won't measure up to the standard of a Dafa disciple. There's only one very righteous path we can walk on, and we can't deviate even just a little bit, because this is required by history, and required by the lives of sentient beings in the future cosmos. The cosmos in the future can't have any deviation or errors due to your having omissions during the Fa-rectification, so it's important for you to walk each and every step well during your own validating the Fa. It only looks as if it's ordinary. Don't leave any stain or regret on the path that you walk when you validate the Fa and during this period when you establish your mighty virtue. Those can never be erased. Of course, whether it's cultivation, validating the Fa, or clearing away the persecution with righteous thoughts, this affair hasn't ended yet, and before it has ended it's an opportunity for those who haven't done well. If in the end you still don't handle things well, when the end comes you will fail. When the persecution first began the students in Mainland China and outside the Mainland alike indeed didn't do well with a lot of things. When they didn't do well at that time you could say that they lacked experience, or that they hadn't ever run into something like that, so they didn't know what to do. Now that a few years have flashed by you can't say that anymore. Now you know full well and rationally how to handle things, so you should do even better, and what happened in the past shouldn't happen again." ("Teaching and Explaining the Fa at the Metropolitan New York Fa Conference," April 20, 2003)

I believe that the practitioners who have been arrested repeatedly would not again take their experiences to be their glory and virtue during their cultivation. These things have already become history. In spite of the blemishes and spots on our cultivation, our benevolent Master still gives us the opportunity to cultivate. So, we should become mature in our cultivation.

In the recent six months there were practitioners in various places who were harassed, arrested, sentenced, and even killed. We should not be misled by this false manifestation that the evils still appear strong. We should study the Fa well, and assimilate the Fa principles into our cultivation. With righteous thoughts and actions, we can prevent further incidents of persecution.

3. Melt into the Fa and dissolve the persecution

Master said,

"Indestructible righteous faith in the cosmos's Truth forms benevolent Dafa disciples' rock-solid, Diamond-Like Bodies, it frightens all evil, and the light of Truth it emanates makes the unrighteous elements in all beings' thoughts disintegrate. However strong the righteous thoughts are, that's how great the power is. Dafa disciples are truly stepping forward out of ordinary humanness. ("Also in a Few Words" in Essentials for Further Advancement II)

With the publication of Master's article "Towards Consummation" and with Master continuing to give us Fa lectures, we have understood the nature of the persecution. Furthermore, Master has also taught us the formulas for sending righteous thoughts to disintegrate the evil. So we now should be completely able to prevent any further persecution incidents. We should not only prevent but also annihilate the persecution. After 2001 I encountered danger in personal persecution but escaped because of my righteous thoughts and actions. These dangers were lurking when I distributed Dafa truth-clarification materials, when I clarified the truth face-to-face, when I tried to persuade brainwashed practitioners [to return to cultivation], and when I worked to rescue detained practitioners.

Having said this much, what I want to emphasize is that we first need to study the Fa well. Comprehending the Fa and melting into the Fa principles can prevent us from being persecuted. Additionally, as long as our thoughts are on the Fa and our xinxing is in accord with the requirements of the Fa at different realms, Master can protect us. The evil ought no longer persecute us! We should no longer tarnish the image of Dafa. We should stop negatively affecting our efforts to save people. We should believe in Master and the Fa and walk our future path well.

This is my personal understanding. Please point out anything improper.