Look at the Bigger Picture and Break Through the Difficulties
(Clearwisdom.net) It's rare for practitioners working for the Minghui website [Chinese version of Clearwisdom.net] to hold a Fa conference. I'd like to take this opportunity to share with everybody my cultivation experience in this project. Please kindly point out if any of my understanding is inappropriate.
When I joined this project in 2003, Minghui had made it through the most difficult period of time since the evil started the persecution, and had become mature in many aspects. The foundation had been laid well. But for me, it was still a new field, and I was at a loss.
Before and after July 20, in the most difficult times, the same as many other practitioners, I had benefited a lot from the Minghui website. I read Master's new articles, kept abreast with the latest situation in China, read articles from practitioners around the world who shared their insights and understandings. Minghui had accompanied me on my Fa-rectification journey.
Since I joined in the project, I had to change the angle of my thinking, from a reader who absorbed nutrition from the website to a helper who provides assistance for readers. I also came to understand that every sentence, every article and every truth clarification material that seems to be simple, actually involves careful consideration and dedication behind the scenes. It requires clear understanding of the Fa, thorough consideration, mastery of the direction of overall situation, and minding the details so as to satisfy readers with different levels of experience. Moreover, as a project for validating the Fa, it [Minghui] must continuously improve to fully achieve the effect of saving sentient beings. It requires constant development and creation. To do well, besides individual efforts, it requires the overall coordination and cooperation of practitioners with different understanding and personalities, so everybody's specialty and advantages can be fully displayed.
I felt great pressure, but I know clearly that things that put no pressure on me may not be effective in saving sentient beings. As a Dafa disciple, it's my duty and mission, and I must do it well.
The Importance of Looking at the Whole Picture
It is well-known that Dafa disciples set up the Minghui website and that the contents on the website have direct connection with Dafa and cultivation. Every article as well as the overall presentation will have a bearing on how Dafa disciples are perceived by the readers. As practitioners in China do not have an easy channel for sharing information with each other, Minghui's direction is the guide for their cultivation. The materials published on Minghui are essential ammunition for their truth clarification work. For non-practitioners who do not know much about Falun Gong, Minghui articles' perspectives, point of views and quality of writing may affect the extent to which they can accept the truth. The evil also keeps a close eye on the Minghui website. If we do well, we can directly suffocate the evil, and save those who are driven by the evil but still have a conscience. Our omissions will be taken advantage of by the evil. The more we are clear about the characteristics and roles of the Minghui website, the more serious we will be about our work at Minghui. We have to keep our readers in mind because the Minghui website has a great influence on them.
As soon as I joined Minghui, I learned to switch my thinking from focusing on individual cultivation, regional situations to looking at the whole picture, which I believe is a requirement for all those involved in Minghui.
For example, when editing an article, I have to consider the choice of words, the overall content and decide on what to edit out. Once, a reporter wrote an article about an interview with a practitioner who had suffered the persecution when she was in China and now lives abroad. The article was well-written, but the interviewee had cultivation issues, [she did not have a clear understanding of the Fa]. For example, she considered committing suicide while being tortured, passively endured while being persecuted, and treated the persecution as "just human beings persecuting other human beings." ("Teaching the Fa at the 2003 Atlanta Fa Conference") She had not improved in her understanding on these Fa principles even after she escaped the persecution. All these cultivation issues were revealed in the article. If non-practitioners read this article, they would be moved by the persecution she had suffered, but they may misunderstand Dafa cultivation. Practitioners who have not studied the Fa well (especially practitioners in China who are still being persecuted) may be misled, thinking that those understandings and behaviors are acknowledged by the Minghui website. So the article could not be published on the Minghui website.
The accuracy of articles and reports is also very important. As practitioners are still cultivating, they still have cultivation issues which may display themselves. At times, those issues are rather serious in the articles they submit. Some may not have clear understanding of the Fa principles, some articles are emotional and may exaggerate or alter the truth, and some may be self-promoting due to attachments. Especially for practitioners who have suffered severe persecution, their cultivation and understanding of the Fa have obvious and serious omissions. These are the things that we need to watch for when we review the articles. Otherwise, once the reports are inconsistent with the facts, even if only a single detail is incorrect, the evil persons in forced labor camps, brainwashing centers and "610 Office" would spread rumors that the information published on the Minghui website is false, creating trouble for local practitioners in their truth clarification efforts, and the practitioners who know the situation would be worried. Practitioners whose cultivation environment is not good in China would be confused over these issues and may argue as result, causing interference for practitioners in China to save people.
There are no shortage of articles that are about isolated incidents and the writer did not seem to have a solid understanding on the Fa principles. Considering our audience, we just do not publish these articles. We don't want to mislead our readers by giving undue coverage on minor issues.
When some practitioners could not agree on how to do things, they would write to Minghui and defend their own ways of doing things and blamed the others. Sometimes, practitioners argued over how to do a particular thing, and both parties could not view and solve the problem harmoniously. Practitioners who are attached to this matter would write an article and submit it to Minghui, but what he wrote contained elements that defended his way of doing a certain task and criticize other practitioners' methods. At this time, we should look at this issue from the overall situation of the Fa-rectification, and then decide how to express and make a trade-off from the perspective of the Minghui website.
In order to do well in the circumstances that seem to be complicated, we must make sure that our cultivation state is good. If we do not study the Fa well, we would be unable to see the real picture, let alone providing the readers with quality material. One of the reasons that I cherish the cultivation in the environment of Minghui, is that practitioners in this project attach great importance to Fa study and look at problems from the Fa's perspective. This environment helps me constantly adjust my state of mind, and urges me to do as a cultivator should.
For quite some time I was unable to adapt to coordinating reports, because I did not feel I was capable, neither am I good at writing articles and communicating with others, let alone doing coordination work. Many reporters in our team joined not because they liked to be reporters but because of the need of Fa-validation. Sometimes when fellow practitioners asked for my opinion on reporting, I thought, "I, myself, don't know how, so how can I tell you?" I was upset, and wanted to shift the coordination work and the part that I'm not good at to practitioners who are more capable than me. I tried several times, and many responsibilities were returned to me. I had to face reality. There are many things that are used to validate the Fa. Practitioners who are capable are very busy. Even if they may be free for a while, soon they will be given more duties to take. I can cultivate myself to become capable, thus, as a whole, we can play an even greater role. Otherwise, able practitioners would be too fatigued to finish doing things that we are supposed to do.
Fa-rectification and saving sentient beings both have high requirements on us, and there's no time to wait for us to slowly improve. Inadequate capacity and restriction of conditions are difficulties that we need to overcome, but should not become limitations to be considered when setting our standards and goals.
Once, the Chinese Ambassador would come to my local area to discuss with government officials and the Chamber of Commerce on the establishment of an airport and to strengthen trade. Reporters from mainstream TV station and radio station called me on the phone and asked if our Falun Gong practitioners would hold some protest activities when the Chinese Ambassador came, and they wanted to cover the event. At that time, we even did not hear about the news, neither did we have any plan on what to do. That non-practitioner reporter from the radio station who has been supportive to us found an excuse for me and said, "It's true, you have to go to work and earn money to make a living, so you can't always have time."
Although the radio station and television station conducted interviews and made positive reports on us, I felt regret and also greatly touched. It is true that we are restricted by all kinds of limitations. We are short-handed, and practitioners who can drive have to go to work, while practitioners who don't work usually don't know how to drive a car or speak fluent English. When holding activities we often meet with a lot of difficulties. However, people from different social stratas are expecting us, although they did not speak out or take action, they have been observing us. The international community responded to the persecution of Falun Gong happening in China quietly on the surface, actually their minds have been continuously changing. If we do well, we can save more sentient beings; if we slack off, don't overcome difficulties, the loss would increase in silence. These changes cannot be seen immediately, but will emerge as they accumulated to a certain extent. So how to do, and to what extent we do, our difficulties, restrictions and abilities--all these problems should not be in our consideration, because we must overcome them as cultivators, and everything should focus on how to truly save sentient beings.
From this matter, I also realize that our Minghui work, be it in Chinese or English, items published every day, the presentation to readers as a whole, plus all kinds of services, are watched by countless eyes. The quality and standard of commentaries, reports, photos and materials at least should meet a professional standard. The sentient beings who need us to save can't understand our difficulties. Many people will look down upon and refuse to accept material that does not meet a high standard. However, we can't receive much feedback for various reasons, and can't see the changes immediately. We can't rely on urging and encouragement from the outside world. We should depend on cultivators' understandings, diligence and will to make sure of the correct direction and improve.
We can't be hindered by difficulties. We are indeed short-handed and have many projects to do. Difficulties may not be overcome immediately. Once, while facing a resource shortage, a practitioner suggested me to take means that ordinary people often use, and the result could be seen immediately. I thought it over and thought that was not right. I determined that no matter how challenging, I could only break through as a cultivator should do. I looked within and let go of bad things. I did not know how to resolve the problem immediately, but when I truly placed my mind correctly, shortly after, I felt the pressure became small.
The workload for Minghui project involves heavy, day-to-day work, grasp of the direction and ideas of all kinds of articles, tens of thousands of submissions for online Fa conference from China, periodical and weekly journals, truth clarification flyers for readers with different levels of experience and practitioners in different places in China. Many practitioners handled several things at the same time, but for security reasons, they have to keep secret, working day by day with high intensity, and have to bear the loneliness. They also have to deal with work and life in ordinary society. It is really not easy. Such circumstances enable us to cultivate to have greater endurance and to be capable of handling several things at the same time.
For a period of time, all pressures came down on me, heavy workload from the project, slow progress, problems also occurred in truth clarification work in my local area. Enticed by the Chinese Communist Party's (CCP) interests, the Chinese community changed from being friendly to rejecting Falun Gong, the western politicians and business circles wanted to do business with the CCP and avoid contact with us, what's worse, the theater where Shen Yun performances are to be held stopped cooperating with us. I felt that I had too many things to handle, I was exhausted, and unable to break through. My work efficiency dropped. What I was able to finish in ten minutes before, was now taking me an hour. Things piled up, and I was anxious. My attitude toward others became bad. Once when I argued with a practitioner on the phone, my colleague in the company heard our conversation and asked me why I used to be kind and friendly to others, but now I shouted and blamed others so harshly.
I realized that my cultivation state was in danger. I must strengthen my Fa study and look within at the same time. After I calmed down, and studied the Fa for a period of time, I saw a big problem of mine, which was a pessimistic attitude towards things. Since my childhood, I have never been optimistic. After I started cultivation practice, the problem continued. I know it manifests as a life walking toward declination. Without sufficient confidence, there won't be courage to forge ahead while facing challenges. Reflecting in my cultivation, my righteous belief in the Fa is not sufficient. I attached greater importance to superficial facts, and what I thought about more was how to resolve particular problems, how to get something done, and how to drive the trouble away so that I could take a short break. I failed to understand that my cultivation is just to face all kinds of things, constantly cultivate myself, ultimately cultivate myself to have a steady state of mind, and be unaffected by the outside environment. I have so much karma to repay, and so many sentient beings are waiting to be saved. How can such a process be smooth and quiet? What I cultivate is state of mind, and what Dafa gives sentient beings must be a bright future. After becoming clear on these points, I calmed down and I also knew how to solve many other problems. Trouble and difficulties always exist and appear this way or that way, but all these are good things and opportunities. When something comes up, I'll soon grasp it, and then find the incorrect part in my state of mind, correct it, and handle it with an active attitude. Bad things will turn out to be good things. We must be sure not to let sentient beings suffer the loss. Now facing challenges and conflicts, though I may still feel unhappy, but I can feel somewhere in the bottom of my heart, there is a joyful feeling, and I have a chance to find my deficiency. I think that my continuous Fa study will constantly strengthen my positive thoughts, and abandon the negative things.
I used to only like chill and depression in autumn. Overcast and rainy days were most suitable for my state of mind. Unknowingly, I began enjoying warm spring and bright sunshine, and I like that kind of lively and vibrant scene. It's not simply a matter of aesthetic issues. I know, Dafa has changed my nature, turning a life that walked toward declination to regaining new vitality.
I'm grateful to practitioners who have walked through with me in this project. When I was lazy, they urged me to strive forward diligently. When I met with difficulties, they provided me assistance. When I was negligent, they silently made up for it. Many practitioners who have been working for the Minghui website from an earlier time, have silently born a lot of pressure. Reporters on my team traveled here and there carrying heavy notebook computers and rushed home late at night to write reports, staying up until morning. Some practitioners are misunderstood by local practitioners because they keep secret what they are doing, but they can treat it lightly. Seeing all this, I was moved and also encouraged to be diligent in my cultivation. We are a whole entity. In the eyes of ordinary people, what they see is not a particular article or a piece of material; what they see is Minghui. They won't take Minghui as a website only. Be it Minghui, The Epoch Times, NTDTV, or distributing flyers on the street, clarifying the facts to the government, protesting in front of the Chinese consulate, or doing the exercises at practice sites-- we are all practitioners of Falun Gong, but each practitioner has a different vow and mission in the overall situation of Fa-rectification. Each of us should keep the one body in mind, help each other, and we will definitely be able to save more sentient beings.