1. Studying the Fa
I am a new practitioner who began studying the Fa in February 2008. At that time, my mother suffered from facial paralysis, even though she had already undergone treatments for more than half a year. Her eyes and mouth were contorted and she was in great pain. But then I remembered back to when my mother was diligent in her practice before, her arthritis was cured and she could sit in full lotus for half an hour. So, I suggested that she take up the practice again. My mother did not follow my suggestion immediately, so I borrowed her Zhuan Falun. This was the first time that I read Zhuan Falun. While reading, I learned that qigong is not just for healing and fitness. Falun Gong guides people toward high levels and teaches people how to achieve Buddhahood, or Tao, or Godhood. It is not a means just for healing illnesses. This was exactly the great profound way that I had been looking for for years. I read a few paragraphs to my husband. He was very excited and felt like he had found a treasure. This is how we first learned the authentic Fa - Falun Dafa.
My husband and I decided to practice Falun Dafa. With our encouragement, my mother began practicing again. She taught us the five exercises. After two months practicing, my mother totally recovered from facial paralysis. We witnessed the magnificence of Dafa again.
In March, our twenty-four-year-old daughter also became a practitioner. In April, my sister and then my brother-in-law started practicing. Their son learned the facts about Falun Dafa. My aunt, my friend and her twenty-four-year-old son began practicing Falun Gong, too. Many of my relatives and friends learned the facts about Falun Dafa.
I enlightened to why it was now that we learned the Fa that we had been waiting billions of years for. I had been steered away from Falun Gong by the old forces and the Chinese Communist Party's (CCP) information blockade, slanders, and their subterfuge using the self-immolation in the Tiananmen Square to discredit Falun Gong. It was Master's merciful salvation and ingenious arrangements by which we were saved. Through continuously learning the Fa, practicing and studying Master's lectures, we steadfastly followed Master and followed the Fa. The gate of heaven was opened for us. We would break through any obstacles, "Steadfastly cultivate Dafa, the will unflinching" ("True Nature Revealed" from Essentials for Further Advancement II), and cultivate directly to completion.
2. Assisting Master in Fa-rectification, Clarifying the Truth to Save Sentient Beings
"The Fa can break all attachments, the Fa can destroy all evil, the Fa can shatter all lies, and the Fa can strengthen righteous thoughts." ("Drive Out Interference" from Essentials for Further Advancement II)
Demonic interference occurred as we began cultivation practice. It disturbed our minds. The interference was very severe. Even while we slept and practiced, we were not left alone. I followed the benevolent solutions as described in Master's "Teaching the Fa at the 2004 International Fa Conference in New York". The beings said they would stop, but they did not. One night, during our Fa study, I read Master's "Touring North America to Teach the Fa", while my husband listened. Those beings that were interfering with us also listened.
The next morning while we meditated, they told me, "We know the secrets that people do not know. We also know the secrets that Gods do not know. We know that your Master came to save beings. This is really the greatest offer of salvation for all sentient beings. We are really leaving this time. All beings, including the ones which interfered with your friends' cultivation, are leaving. We won't interfere with your cultivation practice any more. We will wait and choose our own way." It is Master's mercy and magnificence that saves all beings. It is Dafa that harmonizes all lives.
From continuously studying the Fa, I knew our tasks as Dafa disciples - assist Master in Fa-rectification and save all sentient beings. We came to save people. Therefore every once in a while, before we sent righteous thoughts, we had a righteous thought of benevolent solutions for beings. Those beings had longstanding past relationships with us but did not know the facts of Falun Gong yet. We wanted them to be saved, not to interfere with the Fa-rectification, and to position themselves correctly.
Through studying the Fa, we learned that the requirements for disciples were the three things: studying the Fa and practicing the exercises well, clarifying the facts to save sentient beings, and sending forth righteous thoughts. We learned the Fa late. We should follow Master's mission and be steadfast. We studied the Fa and practiced the exercises daily. We looked inside, cultivated our hearts, broke from our desires, and removed our attachments. We sent righteous thoughts at the four times daily to dissolve the arrangements of the old forces and the evil persecution. We clarified the facts about Falun Dafa to all our relatives and friends, asked them to denounce the CCP and its affiliated organizations, told them that they would be blessed by sincerely saying, "Falun Dafa is good. Truthfulness-Benevolence-Forbearance is good."
Early one morning, just after waking, my husband told me the dream he had: "I dreamed about my friend Yang. He drank half of a small bottle of wine and said the remaining half was for me. I have stopped drinking for some time. How could I have such a dream?" I realized that Master was hinting that we should share Dafa with him and his family. I said, "It must be Master's plan. You have been close friends for almost thirty years. During the seventies, when we were in poverty, the two of you always shared your alcohol even if it was just a tiny bottle. Now we have learned the Fa. How could we forget them?" My husband replied, "Let's visit them today."
Yang was a vegetable farmer in the suburbs. He was honest, simple and kind. But he was also stubborn and did not believe anything easily. He was the kind of person who had worked hard his whole life. My husband and I went to his home. We told him about my husband's dream, and that I had realized it was a hint from Master. We also told him that Dafa was here to save beings. It had been spread to more than eighty countries around the world. The CCP was the only government which persecuted Falun Dafa practitioners and it staged the self-immolation incident in Tiananmen Square and deceived many good-hearted Chinese. We told him it was Master who hinted to us today to save people with predestined relationships, and asked him to please remember, "Falun Dafa is good. Truthfulness-Benevolence-Forbearance is good."
Yang listened with tears in his eyes. He said, "I believe you. I have nothing to be afraid of." When we learned that he had never enrolled in the CCP or its affiliated organizations, we told him that his family members should denounce it if any of them had enrolled. He said they would.
After hearing about how the CCP persecuted Falun Dafa practitioners, many relatives and friends denounced the CCP of their own accord. They have chosen a bright future for themselves.
3. Looking Inward, Discarding Attachments, Eradicating the Old Forces' Persecution
Two months after we began practicing, my husband and I wanted to sit in full lotus more quickly, so we helped each other press our legs down. After only a couple of pushes, my right knee popped. I was in so much pain that I couldn't move my leg. After gentle stretching and light massaging, the pain subsided a little. But, from that point forward, it was painful for me to sit cross-legged or walk.
One day, when I was doing the fifth exercise, I felt tremendous pain in my right knee like it was tearing from the inside out. I endured the pain and continued until the exercise ended. Afterward, I held Master's photo and asked, "What should I do?" I could not hold back my tears; my heart was in great pain. I knew that Master was trying to give me hints, but I did not understand. Since my daughter also studied the Fa, she helped me look for the answer. We finally understood Master's hints,
"Whenever I see you suffering, Master feels even more troubled than you; whenever you do not take a step well, it really pains my heart. Everything that the evil has done has actually targeted the attachments and fears that you have not let go of. You are future Enlightened Beings who are becoming Buddhas, Daos, and Gods, and you are not concerned with the losses and gains of this world. So you should be able to let go of everything." ("Eliminate Your Last Attachment(s)" from Essentials for Further Advancement II)
After studying the Fa and looking inward, I realized that the evil had intensified my leg pain because it was exploiting my attachments to fear of pain in meditation, fear of hardship, and my attachment to comfort. In addition, the evil tried to make me feel that it was too hard to cultivate and give up by taking advantage of my attachment to fear of pain. In a sharing afterwards, a fellow practitioner said, "The mechanism that Master gave us was sitting with legs in full lotus. We would rather sit with our legs in the full lotus position for one minute than the half-lotus position for an hour." My daughter and I decided to sit in full lotus. Before I did it, I rubbed my leg and sent righteous thoughts. I lifted my legs and sat in full lotus. That first time, I sat for 15 minutes and did not feel any pain at all. It was exactly like Master's words,
"Disciples' righteous thoughts are strong
Master has the power to turn the tide" ("Master-Disciple Grace" from Hong Ying Vol.II)
My leg recovered slowly.
Six months passed, the three of us kept sitting with our legs in the full lotus position. No matter how much pain we experienced, we did not put our legs down. We were able to distinguish Master's eliminating karma from the evils' persecution, and were thus able to reject the old forces arrangements using Master's Fa-truth.
In steadfast cultivation practice, I understood more clearly why, in every lecture, Master emphasized studying the Fa well. When we study the Fa well and look inward to find and remove our attachments, our cultivation improves. Only when we study the Fa well are we able to continuously validate and enlighten to more and more Fa-truths in the boundless Dafa. We are able to gradually understand Master's Fa, and more effectively help in Fa-rectification, which is our mission. We are not lost in the illusory world. We are able to "attain the righteous Enlightenment of selflessness and altruism." ("Non-Omission in Buddha-Nature" from Falun Dafa Essentials for Further Advancement) We are able to understand the Fa's truths to improve our abilities in righteous thoughts to eliminate the evil, become steadfast in our righteous thoughts, position ourselves in the right place in Dafa, and perform well as a disciple should do.
Due to my limited level, if there is any incorrectness, I look forward to fellow practitioners' merciful corrections. Heshi.
October 16, 2008