Cultivating Myself Well and Saving Others
(Clearwisdom.net) Thinking about how many people have not yet been saved, I feel that I have not done enough. In particular, there are not many practitioners in our hometown, and most practitioners began cultivating relatively late. Because we started later, we need to adopt various methods to help save people. In recent years, we have continued to clarify the truth about Falun Gong to people face to face regardless of the weather or other impediments.
In thinking about how to do things more efficiently, I realized that we should always keep in mind our mission and responsibility. We have made prehistoric vows with Teacher and came to the world to assist Teacher in validating the Fa. The sentient beings' hope lies in our helping them to withdraw from the CCP and its affiliated organizations and to choose their position wisely. Also important is sending forth righteous thoughts. In addition to the four specified times for sending forth righteous thoughts, I send forth righteous thoughts when I go out and when clarifying the truth to people. I have repeatedly experienced how Teacher has guided predestined people to come to me so that I can help them withdraw from the CCP. I also do my best to remember to look inward. Sometimes people refused to quit the CCP and its affiliated organizations, and were rude about it. Of course, it's hard to know their reasons, but we have to look within to find out whether it is our mind that is not stable when we sent forth righteous thoughts, if the state of our heart is not pure, or maybe we were speaking on too high a level, or if our tone was not polite enough. In short, we should not blame others. We should not be in a hurry, harbor resentment or be discouraged during those occasions, and we should seize the next opportunity to do it again.
I am 70 years old now, and started to practice Falun Gong in September 1996. One day I received a copy of the book Zhuan Falun from a friend in Nanjing. I was thoroughly impressed by the principles in the book and could not stop reading it until I finished it that night. After that, I started to walk on my cultivation path. Within less than six months, the five to six ailments that I had suffered from, like high blood pressure and hepatomegaly, completely vanished and I have not taken a pill in the last thirteen years.
On July 20, 1999, the CCP started to persecute Falun Gong, and the situation changed tremendously. My faith was not fully steadfast and I did not do well during the following several months. However, under the care of Teacher, I have made it through to where I am now. From the beginning of 2000, I started to clarify the truth about Falun Gong. Although I did not stop, I was not strong enough and did not talk to many people. However, when I read Teacher's article "Let Go of Human Attachments and Save the World's People, " I realized that what I had done was far from enough, and I changed a lot.
Through studying Teacher's lectures, I noticed my problem, which was not doing well in persuading people to quit the CCP and its affiliated organizations. I had only talked to relatives, friends, and classmates, but did not dare to talk to strangers, which was mainly due to fear. Starting from the end of last year, I focused on talking to people about Falun Gong and the persecution, as well as helping them to quit the CCP. I've done everything I can to help people quit the CCP regardless of how much time I have to spend, how far I have to travel to talk to them, or the expenses of creating materials.
One of the most important things is to get rid of our attachment of fear, and the fundamental way to do so is to study the Fa. Teacher said:
"The fact is, those who can't step forward, regardless of the excuse, are concealing fear. Yet for cultivators, fear or lack there of proves [one's] humanity or divinity, and it is what differentiates cultivators from ordinary people. It is something that a cultivator must face, and the biggest human attachment that a cultivator must remove." ("Study the Fa Well, and Getting Rid of Attachments is Not Hard" )
Teacher also said in "Pass the Deadly Test":
"Cultivation is cultivation, and cultivation is about getting rid of one's attachments, putting a stop to bad human behavior and all kinds of fears, including the human attachments of being afraid of this and being afraid of that. Fear can cause one to make mistakes, and fear can cause one to lose a predestined opportunity. Fear is a death trap on a human being's journey toward divinity."
In order to get rid of fear, it is important to study the Fa better. Before, I read Zhuan Falun nearly a thousand times, but often I could not concentrate, as I was preoccupied with getting it done. In order to address this, I changed to reading a chapter and reciting a page of Zhuan Falun every day. Through doing this, I feel that my fear is lessening day by day. When the CCP held its national congress, someone called me and said that there were many plainclothes police officers dispatched to monitor us. I was totally unmoved and did what I normally do.
Another attachment I wanted to address was ego. I had been the CCP party secretary for several years and had quite a bit of power locally. However, I am introverted and not good with communicating with others, especially strangers. Teacher taught us in "Teaching the Fa at the 2003 Atlanta Fa Conference":
"Also, with those people that you run into by chance, who you run into in daily life, and the people you run into at work, you should all clarify the truth to them."
Teacher also said in "Hurry Up And Tell Them" (Hong Yin II):
"As Dafa disciples tell people the facts,
It's like sharp swords shooting out together from their mouths,
Shredding apart the rotten demons' lies.
Lose no time and save them, hurry up and tell them."
I am a practitioner and should certainly listen to Teacher's instructions. Once when I tried to talk to an elderly person and a young man, they crossed the street without letting me finish. The elderly man got angry and shouted at me, which made me feel very embarrassed. I'd never been talked to like that. But soon I thought of what Teacher said in Zhuan Falun:
"Perhaps in the future you may be slapped in the face twice, and you will lose face in front of someone whom you least want to see it. It is to see how you will deal with this issue and whether you can endure it. If you can tolerate it and yet it preys on your mind, it is still not good enough. "
I soon calmed down and realized that this event was for me to remove this attachment. I should have been grateful to that elderly man, instead of being resentful. I used this as a learning opportunity to better reach out to people from all walks of life with compassion.
The third attachment I wanted to talk about was our expectations for success and maintaining our cool. One day last year, I went to the homes of two veteran CCP officials, one of which was the municipal cadre. It went very smoothly, and the two people quit the CCP without any problem. That afternoon I went to the home of an old classmate from more than 40 years ago, with whom I usually stayed in good contact. Considering that I had talked to him about this a few times before, I thought that it would be easy to persuade him to quit the CCP. Unexpectedly, he did not accept what I said to him, and even said some disrespectful things about Teacher. I got angry and quarreled with him. After returning home, I realized that this happened because I had gotten overly happy about the success from earlier in the day, and my competitive nature was stronger than my compassion. When I realized this, I called and apologized to my old classmate.
Learning from many such lessons helped me to gradually mature. One of my relatives accepted the facts about Falun Gong, but did not quit the CCP. I patiently talked to him three times about it, and in the end he agreed to quit the CCP.
I have an attachment where I really dislike being interrupted, but at the same time I had tendency to interrupt others before they finished. After I realized that this could affect my efforts to help others withdraw from the CCP, I decided to change. Once I went to an elderly official's home to persuade him to quit the CCP, but I was not very confident. After meeting him, I carefully listened to him, let him talk about his family, his illnesses, etc. and I simply expressed my sympathy for him. After he finished, I then started to clarify the truth. Unexpectedly, he and his wife quit the CCP without any problems.
We are reaching the end of Fa rectification, and every day I recite Teacher's words:
"Get rid of any attachment you have, and don't think about anything. Just do everything a Dafa disciple should do, and everything will be covered." ("Teaching the Fa at the Washington, D.C. International Fa Conference," Guiding the Voyage)
I will certainly do my best to live up to Teacher's compassion and salvation, and to not let down his expectations of me to save all sentient beings. In the last stage of validating the Fa, I plan to be more diligent with clarifying the truth and persuading more people to quit the CCP and its affiliated organizations.