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Rectifying Myself One Step at a Time

August 19, 2008 |   By a practitioner from Jilin Province, China

(Clearwisdom.net) I began practicing Falun Gong in April 1998 and have received great benefits. All of my diseases went away and I learned how to read by studying the Fa.

After the persecution began on July 22, 1999, I continued to practice the exercises outdoors with several other practitioners. When the police came and recorded our names, I felt intimidated. The retirement office of my work place contacted me and asked me whether I intended to continue practicing. I told them that I would, so they repeatedly put pressure on me to give up Dafa. Policemen from the local station also came and asked me to write a "guarantee statement"(promising not to practice any longer), but I didn't agree to this.

From that moment forward, I couldn't study the "Fa" or practice the exercises publicly with fellow practitioners. This was a real test for me. At that time, I didn't recognize all the words in "Zhuan Falun," and my exercise movements were not exactly correct, yet these issues didn't sway my determination to continue my cultivation. I studied the Fa at home and used the dictionary when I came across words I did not know. At first, I didn't even know how to use the dictionary, and would thumb through the whole dictionary to find the words. Sometimes it took me more than an hour to look up one word. I stayed up well into the night to look up the words, but I did not feel tired. When my grandson visited, I asked him to show me how to use the dictionary. After I found the words, I wrote them down on a piece of paper so that I wouldn't forget them. I invited the children living downstairs to help me look up words in the dictionary, too. Although it was difficult, I had only one thought in my mind: No matter how difficult, I would read through Zhuan Falun.

Teacher saw my heart and helped me. Finally, without any schooling and in my sixties, I was able to read through Zhuan Falun - I was so happy. I studied the Fa and practiced the exercises at home. Later I started to distribute truth-clarification materials. Sometimes I obtained materials from fellow practitioners, then distributed them. In the beginning I was quite scared, and I could not post the materials properly. The persecution in our region was severe, and the local police arrested quite a few fellow practitioners. After that, we seldom made contact with each other. We could hardly acquire the new Fa lectures and the "Minghui Weekly."

This situation continued for three years, until an elderly female practitioner moved here. She had strong righteous thoughts and was very warm and sincere. She vigorously rebuilt our environment for group Fa study and sharing. Through the Fa study and sharing, I began to understand what it meant to cultivate in the Fa rectification period - we need to go above and beyond personal cultivation. Not only should we cultivate ourselves well, but we must also save sentient beings and assist Teacher in Fa-rectification. This practitioner also encouraged me to accompany her to clarify the truth in public. However, I had a strong attachment of fear and had not yet helped my family members to understand the truth of Dafa, so I did not always go with her. She did not give up on me and continued to invite me to go with her. If I could not go, she would give me some materials to distribute when I found the opportunity, or she would ask me to help by sending forth righteous thoughts. I was greatly encouraged and tried my best to go with her each time. Little by little, my fear was removed. I was able to clarify truth to others; first to my relatives and friends, then gradually to neighbors, colleagues and others.

Cultivation isn't always smooth sailing. I went to the group Fa study frequently, and my neighbors took notice and started rumors about me. At first I was afraid and stopped going to the group Fa study, but then realized that I was interfered with by my attachment of fear and that I should let go of it. I did not do anything bad, so why not go openly? If they asked me about it, I should just take the opportunity to clarify the truth to them. Once my mind became upright, everything went well and nothing unexpected happened. "The whole process of cultivation is the process to constantly get rid of human attachments."(Zhuan Falun) Sometimes my attachment of fear would resurface when I sensed the slightest sign of trouble, but then I would eliminate it. Over time, my attachment of fear became weaker and weaker. My husband was worried that I might be persecuted and didn't want me to go out to clarify the truth. I told him the truth about Dafa. If he was in a good mood, he would just tell me to practice at home. If he was in a bad mood, he would say something negative about Dafa. I patiently explained why he shouldn't say bad things about Dafa. Eventually he understood the truth and stopped the negative comments about Dafa, although he continued to restrict my truth-clarification activities.

I realized that the environment reflects our cultivation state. My husband's actions were due to my attachments. I was determined to eliminate my fear, and my husband loosened his control of me. At first I was nervous, but thought to myself: "I have Teacher and Dafa on my side. I should not be afraid." Step by step, I overcame my fears. When I went to the market, got on a bus, went shopping, or visited relatives and friends, I always brought truth-clarification materials with me. In the beginning, my relatives, friends and neighbors did not understand the truth, but after I clarified to them time and again, they understood more and more, and most of them quit the CCP and its affiliated organizations. When I first started to clarify truth to my relatives, they would not accept it. I couldn't maintain my xinxing and became angry with them, so I returned home and looked inward. I realized that I should let go of the attachment to my relatives. I didn't clarify the truth well because of my unstable xinxing level. I decided to do better the next time.

There is another thing I'd like to share with fellow practitioners. A former colleague had some disputes with me at work in the past. Although we both became practitioners, there were still barriers between us, and we didn't maintain contact with each other. When we began studying Fa together, our human notions surfaced, resulting in disagreements. I tried to let it go, but my forbearance didn't come from a cultivator's heart. I was forcing myself to be tolerant, and sometimes in the heat of the conflict, I would fight back. This lasted for quite some time. Although I tried continually to look inward, the moment I saw her, my human notions would get stirred up, and I wanted to fight with her. Later, I would regret this. Through Fa study and sharing, both of us improved our xinxing, but only after reading a fellow practitioner's sharing paper did I truly let go of this attachment. As practitioners, we must cultivate ourselves solidly. Otherwise, how can we improve ourselves? Teacher said in Zhuan Falun,

"In cultivation practice, there may be two scenarios when dealing with specific conflicts or when others treat you badly. One is that you might have treated this person badly in your previous life. You feel in your heart that it is unfair, "How can this person treat me like this?" Then why did you treat this person that way in the past?"

I also realized that I should be tolerant towards fellow practitioners and treat family members and others with a benevolent cultivator's heart. I should not treat myself as a non-practitioner but rather, let go of all of my human attachments, harmonize with Dafa, and put my heart into saving more people. I continued to send forth righteous thoughts to eliminate the evil factors and to do the three things well.

Step by step, I am rectifying myself, but I sometimes fail to do enough truth-clarification and feel bad. Occasionally, my attachment to self and fear arises to interfere with me. I will seize the time to cultivate myself well, save more people, and walk my cultivation path well so that I do not leave with any regrets.

Please kindly point out anything inappropriate.