Sharing with Practitioners Whose Children Are Preparing for High School or College Entrance Exams
(Clearwisdom.net) I have wanted to write this article for years, but I did not feel the urgency to start until I recently observed and heard about several incidents in my area.
In the Chinese education system, the College Entrance Exam is a national exam and is used as almost the only measure for college admission. The exam comprises several subject tests, and the total score, in the range of 700 to 800, varies every year. Most students will spend their senior year (12th grade) in high school preparing for this exam. The High School Entrance Exam is also important because it decides whether the student can go to an exemplary high school, where they would have a better chance to go to a better college later. Many parents consider the year preparing for the exam the most critical time for their child.
I heard that some previously diligent practitioners rented apartments at remote locations because their children were preparing to take the High School or College Entrance Exams. They hoped that this would allow them to stay away from police interference and meanwhile cut down contacts with other practitioners to spend more time with their children at this critical time.
I would like to quote Teacher's words from "Fa Teaching at the U.S. Capital:"
"But no matter how smart or cunning a person is, everything ends up the same in the end. Let's take the case of someone who is very dumb. You may find one person stupid and naive, while another is very cunning. But no matter how you live your life, the outcome is the same. It definitely won't change any just because a person is cunning, nor will it change any because a person is naive."
Nevertheless, Teacher said in "The Ability of Knowing Fate," The Second Talk, Zhuan Falun, 2003 translation:
"And when a person is born, his whole life already exists simultaneously in a special dimension where there's no concept of time, and for some people there's more than one life there."
From Teacher's words, we know that no matter how much time and energy the parents spend with their child, whether their child will go to college, which college the child will attend, and even the entire life of the child is predetermined. As a Falun Dafa practitioner, if we put the three things aside and spend our most precious time helping our children prepare for the exam instead of cultivating, shouldn't we look inward to see what went wrong? Aren't we lacking complete belief in Teacher's Fa? Where did our previous diligence go? Doesn't it mean that we still have some selfishness we need to let go of?
Some practitioners' children are also practitioners, but their parents only ask them to spend more time on their schoolwork and sometimes even to spend less time studying the Fa and doing the "three things." Some children are very diligent with their cultivation. Not only do they study the Fa, but they also clarify the truth about Falun Gong to others. However, once their academic scores go down even slightly, their parents jump in and stop them, blaming practicing Falun Dafa for taking too much of their time, instead of reminding them to look inward to improve their xinxing and be more efficient in their schoolwork to save more sentient beings. My fellow practitioners, what are we really pursuing? Are we pursuing fame and gain in the human world? If you are so concerned with the poor score that your child receives on one exam, isn't it possible that Teacher is using this to expose your attachment? Shouldn't you look inward instead of asking your child to spend less time studying the Fa? Are you still fundamentally a Dafa disciple?
The Fa has higher standards for cultivators than for everyday people. Teacher has said this very clearly. Knowing their heavy responsibility and mission as a cultivator but not fulfilling them because of personal interests and priorities is a very strong attachment. If the practitioners indeed waste the cultivation time for themselves and their children, they have made a big mistake. It will also negatively impact their child.
Here are a few examples:
Practitioner A's child was very talented, and his academic achievements should have gotten him into one of the top four universities in China. However, he was not a practitioner. Practitioner A had a very strong attachment to him. Since he started the 12th Grade, she spent a lot of time at home to support him while he prepared for the College Entrance Exam. She went to the market every day to buy fresh vegetables and meat and cooked three meals a day with balanced and ample nutrition. When other practitioners went to her home to share experiences with her, she always appeared very busy. As a result, her interaction with other practitioners became less and less frequent. When the National College Entrance Exam in China was finished, some practitioners asked her to send forth righteous thoughts for the practitioners who were illegally arrested; she did not even know what had happened. Then she told the other practitioner not to ask her for anything because she would be too busy helping her child apply to universities. Her child was admitted to an elite university, but his score was not as high as it could have been, and his major was in a department that he was not really interested in. It has been two years since her child started preparing for the exam; Practitioner A has not yet made any major breakthroughs in her cultivation.
Practitioner B's husband had died in the Chinese Communist Party's (CCP's) persecution against Falun Gong. Her son is a young practitioner at an exemplary high school, but he claimed that he was too busy with schoolwork and always stayed up late working on his studies, so he rarely studied the Fa and did the "three things." He was a straight A student, and his score should have been above 600, but he received only 580 points on the College Entrance Exam. It was also said that he made mistakes in his college application. Her son now attends a normal university in Heilongjiang Province. I was not very familiar with Practitioner B, but I always wanted to tell her, "The most important thing is to lead your son to study the Fa well and be diligent yourself. That's the only way to pay respect to your husband who lost his life for his firm belief in Dafa. The persecution has lasted eight years. Many practitioners have lost their family members, but they still firmly believe in Dafa. Don't be depressed anymore. Isn't it better to follow the example of Fadu's mother (whose husband was also tortured to death by the CCP) to expose the persecution, clarify the truth, and validate the Fa?"
I also would like to share my story of cultivating Dafa. I was a student at an exemplary high school, but my academic scores were not very high. I worked hard but did not improve much. I started practicing Falun Gong when I was in the 11th grade. The more I studied the Fa, the more I felt its broadness and profoundness. So I put Fa study as the top priority in my life and schoolwork second. However, I still ranked in the bottom half of my class. Maybe I was too attached to schoolwork.
At first, seven 11th graders at my school practiced Falun Gong. We met several times a week for Fa study and experience sharing. Liangliang, who was a top student at our school, was the first person to leave our group. He said that he wanted to spend more time on schoolwork and would pick up practicing after he went to college. By the winter of the second year, when we were in 12th grade, only Xiaofan and I remained in our Fa study group. We chose one of Teacher's books to study at a time and moved to another after we finished it. Once, when we were practicing the exercises outside in the freezing weather, it snowed heavily. We did not have exercise music, and I felt that my hands and feet were frozen. However, he was still doing the exercises, so I did not stop either. Then the weather became colder and colder; eventually we had to stop studying the Fa outside. We did not have a room to study inside, so we stopped our group study and practiced and studied separately.
At that time, I read two lectures of Zhuan Falun each day, and sometimes I read Teacher's other lectures as well. The schoolwork was very heavy for the seniors. The school day started at 6:40 a.m. and finished at 9:50 p.m. I used all of my nap time to study the Fa. I would also study the Fa during the break between dinner and evening classes. I got home after 10:00 p.m. and had to do homework until eleven or sometimes midnight. After that, I continued studying the Fa. I sometimes studied the Fa until 2:00 a.m., then did the exercises until 3:00 a.m. Occasionally I had to stay awake the whole night to get my homework done. Although I was focused on my schoolwork, I always put Fa study as my number one priority. I also tried to get rid of my attachment to scores. Every time the score sheet was distributed, my score was not handsome at all. But after I took a look, I just happily devoted myself to the next round of studying. Contrary to other students, I did not feel nervous when our school held several rounds of simulation tests for the College Entrance Exam. I did poorly on the last two simulation tests, even making many mistakes on the two subjects that I knew best. My parents became really worried and began to look for back door connections with people in charge of college admissions. Later my father told me that he could get me into the Heilongjiang University directly and that I did not have to take the exam.
My current academic achievement would not have gotten me into Heilongjiang University. My original plan was just to try taking the exam. If I was not admitted to any college, I would repeat my senior year and re-take the exam the next year. It would be a great relief to me if the Heilongjiang University admitted me without requiring me to take the exam. However, I did not want to reap without sowing. With some unknown strength, I felt that I should take the exam; otherwise I had wasted all my time on studying. My father was surprised when I told him, "No, I don't want to go to Heilongjiang University." After discussing the situation with my teacher, he agreed with my decision.
I remembered the first day of the College Entrance Exam. I sat extremely relaxed in the bus taking us to the exam site. I chatted and joked around. One student reminded me, "Sister, we are not on a field trip; we're going to take the College Entrance Exam." After each section of the exam, I felt very good about how I did. When my parents asked me, I told them that "I did it above my normal capabilities." My mother told the same thing to our relatives and friends who called, inquiring about my situation. Our high school President told us, "There won't be any extraordinary achievements during the exam. It is good if you perform at 80% of your normal capability. Your estimated score should stay in a 30 point range of the average score of your simulation tests."
In the end, my score was 80 points above my average score and 50 points higher than my best score on the simulation tests. I also made good decisions in my college application and was admitted to an elite university directly under the Ministry of Education. It was truly a miracle for me and great fortune for my family. Xiaofan, who continued to participate in the group Fa study with me, also scored beyond his normal capabilities and was admitted to the Nankai University in Tianjin City, one of the top universities in China. He said his score was also 80 points above his average score on the simulation tests.
Liangliang, the first student to leave our Fa study group, did poorly on the College Entrance Exam and now attends a mediocre college, even though she was considered a top student in our school. Even more sadly, less than two weeks after the exams, the CCP started persecuting Falun Gong. Since Liangliang stopped practicing during the self-cultivation period, he could not understand Fa-rectification period cultivation. He thought we were participating in politics, so he never came back to Dafa. He was once so close to Dafa, but he never came in. It was a big loss for his eternal life. For those practitioners who want to give up cultivation temporarily to support their children for the College Entrance Exam, shouldn't they look for issues deep in their roots?
When I was in the 12th Grade, I only thought to practice the Fa persistently. However, those two years were most precious to lay the foundation of my cultivation before the CCP's persecution! If I had known it, I would definitely have tried my best to bring Liangliang back. My fellow practitioners, you may think the things and interests in front of your eyes are important, but have you realized how little time you have left for your cultivation?
I later had a filthy thought of utilizing Dafa. Remembering the benefit I received from cultivation and my outstanding achievement on the College Entrance Exam, I overestimated my scores in the Graduate School Entrance Exam and applied for the best Graduate schools in China. I wanted to validate myself and was hoping for the miracle to happen again. I did not fully understand the Fa and did not pay attention to saving sentient beings. As a result, I spent several years preparing and re-taking the Graduate School Entrance Exam, but I was never admitted to any graduate school. I now feel deep remorse for wasting those years.
My fellow practitioners, please think it over. The opportunity for Fa-rectification cultivation will be gone soon. Be careful to avoid being remorseful forever for some mistake you made just for a temporary benefit.