For the Unalterable Vow (Part I)
(Clearwisdom.net) Greetings honorable Master! Greetings fellow practitioners!
I learned Falun Dafa in 1996. Later, I began to memorize the Fa. I worked on memorizing it whether I was walking, sitting, working, or holding my child. After I finished memorizing Zhuan Falun, I started memorizing Master's other lectures. I submerged myself in the Fa every day and continued to absorb its deeper meanings. I realized its profoundness and the power and depth of Teacher's compassion. I often shed tears when I was memorizing the Fa. I was surrounded by Dafa's strong energy and could feel the enormous changes in my body, layer by layer. I quickly assimilated myself to the Fa and became peaceful and compassionate. I felt myself making tremendous changes daily, which laid a sound foundation for my future practice. My steadfast efforts in memorizing the Fa helped me pass various tribulations again and again, and I have been doing so persistently for many years.
1. Balancing Family Relations
After the persecution started in 1999, many practitioners had a hard time convincing their families that they wanted to continue the practice.
When I was forced to leave my home because of the persecution, my husband wanted a divorce because he could not withstand the endless harassment and persecution. Initially I had human notions that I could not give up. My child was young, I didn't have a place to stay or a job, and my husband was leaving me. I then realized that the nature of the practice was not supposed to be easy and comfortable. I found my attachments and let them go by prioritizing my mission in validating the Fa. As a result, my troubles disappeared.
Shortly after I began practicing Falun Dafa, when my husband and I had disagreements, I would invariably yield. He thought I was simply easy to push around. When the persecution started and I refused to compromise no matter what tortures I was subjected to in the prisons, he was impressed by my fortitude.
Fear of the persecution continued to grow in my husband's heart. He didn't want me to go out to clarify the facts and thought that the movement of quitting the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) had political motives.
I often left the book Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party in plain sight, where he had easy access to it. I frequently played DVDs exposing the CCP culture and its evil deeds. At first he refused to watch them. After a while, he began to understand the true situation. I occasionally talked to him about the CCP, and gradually the CCP culture inside him disappeared.
I once told him, "My Teacher is being slandered and my fellow practitioners are being tortured. So many people in China are misled by the CCP's propaganda and don't know what Falun Gong really is. As a practitioner, I can't just sit at home. If I did, even you would look down on me. If your good friend was in trouble or a person was drowning and you didn't offer any help, what would people think of you?" He said nothing. I knew the words that came from my righteous thoughts moved him.
In the end, if he was present when I talked about quitting the CCP, he would assist me. He either helped to get to the topic in the conversation or pushed it a little when I got to the main point by saying "let's all quit." Others would often agree because my husband was not a practitioner. At times when he was meeting with his friends, he would come home with a few people's names who wanted to quit the CCP. I was very touched by the changes in him.
Teacher said in "Teaching the Fa in Canada, 2006,"
"Many students understand only that doing the exercises and studying the Fa are cultivation. Yes, with those you directly engage the Fa. But as you go about truly cultivating yourself in your day-to-day life, the society that you come into contact with is your cultivation environment. The work and family environments that you spend time in are both settings in which you are to cultivate yourselves, are part of the path you must walk, are what you must handle, and handle correctly at that. None of these should be glossed over."
When I showed my family that I was a good wife and mother, while doing what I should do as a practitioner, I helped them see what a real practitioner is. I think this is the best way to harmonize my family.
2. Eliminating Fear
I was almost arrested several times because of the persecution and that left doubts in my mind.
One day, several practitioners asked if I would go with them to the city prison and detention center to hang up some banners. I reluctantly agreed. After I went home, I kept on having doubts, "Those places are too dangerous, but I shouldn't acknowledge the persecution. If someone saw us, it would not be easy to run away in that area, but what we are doing is the most righteous thing, and nothing can interfere." I turned on my MP3 player and the song "Teacher's Grace" began playing, "I can still hear the vows and remember the sacred oath. We came for the sentient beings and are not afraid to suffer in order to help Teacher rectify the Fa." I could not stop crying, feeling so much shame. I was only worrying about myself and fell short of Teacher's expectations of me. I was determined to go.
That night, we sent righteous thoughts before we set off. We successfully hung dozens of banners around the prison and the detention center, and returned home safely. A few days later, a practitioner who went there to send righteous thoughts told me that the banners were still there. When fear arises, that means we didn't negate the old forces, and walked the path they arranged for us. When we let go of ourselves, the element of fear will disappear. Teacher said,
"If you are not afraid, the factor that would make you afraid will cease to exist. This is not to be self-imposed, but is achieved by truly and calmly letting go of it. ("Eliminate Your Last Attachment(s)" from Essentials for Further Advancement II)
3. Exposing the Persecution Using a Cell Phone
After reading articles about how practitioners expose the persecution through cell phones, I bought a cell phone and learned to use it by following the directions given to me by a practitioner. I encountered hindrances in the many steps needed to make things work, but I saw Teacher's grace in every step and felt that I was improving as a practitioner.
When I think back about the first time I sent text messages, I couldn't help but laugh at myself. That morning I successfully sent out 110 messages. I was so excited. When I tried to text in the afternoon, it didn't work. I changed the IMEI and switched to a new SIM card. This time, I only managed to send out 20 text messages before it stopped working. I started to look within. I was acting with my human notions. I was happy when I succeeded, and upset when I failed. Teacher's story about the person who became an Arhat twice and fell back down twice came to my mind. My attachments to zealotry, showing-off, and validating myself were very strong. Gradually I adjusted my attitude. As I gained more experience, the process of sending text messages became much smoother.
The process of clarifying the facts is a process of disintegrating the evil. Master said,
"Your every word, every flyer, every keystroke, every telephone call, and every letter is having a huge impact. Beings that have come to understand the facts become mobile media, and they too clarify the facts." ("Teaching the Fa at the 2003 Midwest-U.S. Fa Conference")
I don't make a lot of money at my job. I try to save in every way I can. Teacher mentioned on several occasions about the resources of practitioners.
"You have wasted the limited resources that we have, leaving nothing for when it comes time to really save people." ( "Fa Teaching Given at the 2010 New York Fa Conference")
One time a practitioner who was well-off bought several cards for the practitioners who did Dafa work with cell phones. I didn't take them, thinking that my income, though limited, should be used in doing Dafa work and saving people instead of to live better.
(To be continued)