(Clearwisdom.net) I have been practicing Falun Dafa for many years now, yet I have only just realized that the way I have been practicing the fifth exercise has been totally wrong. In the past, I struggled to complete even 45 minutes, let alone a full hour. Whenever I finished the meditation I felt like I was in a daze and could barely stay awake. I knew something wasn’t right, but I figured I needed to force myself to meditate more frequently to break through the interference. However, the situation remained the same. Over time I became less and less motivated to do the meditation.

Today I realized I was practicing the meditation entirely wrong. In Lecture 9 of Zhuan Falun, “A Clear and Clean Mind,” Master says, “‘Once I settle down, I’ll think of everything, including odd thoughts and ideas.’ It is like overturning rivers and seas with everything surfacing, and one cannot attain tranquility whatsoever.” After sitting for a while, I realized I was entering into a dream-like state where stray thoughts and odd ideas were really entering into my brain. I had mistakenly thought that was what entering the state of ding was like.

But Master says in Lecture 8, in “Attachment of Zealotry:”

“Our practice requires you to cultivate yourselves with full awareness. Someone always says: 'Teacher, once I close my eyes my body will swing.' I would say that this does not necessarily need to be so. You have already developed a habit of abandoning your Main Consciousness. Once you close your eyes you will put the Main Consciousness to rest, and it will disappear. You have already developed this habit. While sitting here, why doesn’t your body swing? If you maintain the state in which your eyes are open, will your body swing with eyes slightly closed? Absolutely not. You think that qigong should be practiced this way and you have formed such a concept. Once you close your eyes, you will disappear without knowing where you are.” (Zhuan Falun)

I realized that if I were just sitting there with my eyes open, I would not be in such a state. I had developed this bad habit of abandoning my Main Consciousness and I didn’t even realize that was what I had been doing.

Today during meditation, I was determined to break this habit. Every time it felt like I was drifting away, I would force my Main Consciousness back. As I struggled to keep my Main Consciousness dominant, it felt as though dozens of electrical currents were flowing through my face, blasting away the heavy veil of drowsiness. Eventually something clicked and suddenly everything was different. I felt very light and very aware of myself practicing, like I was sitting in an eggshell. The meditation no longer seemed like an unbearable burden and it finally felt the way I had heard the meditation described.

I know I still have a long way to go to make sure I have fully broken my bad habit, but for the first time in a very long time, I’m actually looking forward to meditating again.