Minghui Fahui | Validating Falun Gong via Stage Art Through Wisdom Bestowed from Teacher
(Minghui.org) Teacher said,
"The Buddha Fa can save mankind, but it is not for the salvation of human beings that the Buddha Fa came into existence. The Buddha Fa can unravel the mysteries of the universe, life, and science. It enables mankind to resume the correct path in science, but it is not for the guidance of mankind’s science that the Buddha Fa has been brought forth... In the future there will then be many experts and scholars whose wisdom will be broadened through the Buddha Fa. They will become the new mankind’s pioneers in different fields of learning. Yet it is not for you to become a pioneer that the Buddha Fa has given you wisdom. You have attained it because you are a cultivator. That is, you are first a cultivator and then an expert." ("Validation" from Essentials for Further Advancement)
I can relate to the above passage of the Fa as a Falun Gong practitioner who works in the field of stage art professionally. There are so many things I would like to share after 18 years of practicing Falun Gong. In each stage of my cultivation practice, Teacher has bestowed infinite wisdom upon me every year, month and day as long as I make the slightest progress. The gift of wisdom has enabled me to validate the Fa and create a better environment to clarify the truth about Falun Gong. I would like to share my personal experiences and understandings by using different examples.
1. The Mighty Power of Righteous Thoughts and Compassion
I once realized the importance of sending forth righteous thoughts, and I knew I should send them beyond the four set times daily. When I went out, I would send forth righteous thoughts along the way towards everyone I met when I was not listening to Teacher's Fa lectures. When I went to school to work, I would focus on the school and all the people in it when I sent forth righteous thoughts. I would not stop sending forth righteous thoughts when I taught classes.
Regardless of where I taught, few students would be tardy or skip my class although these problems might be prevalent in other teachers' classes. When students needed to be absent, they would inform me in advance and would not be absent unless they had my permission. I didn't know my class was anything special until the dean commented, "How curious. Your class has the highest attendance rate. Whichever class you taught, it has always ended up having the best attendance rating. I have asked some students, but they all told me that they didn't know why they dared not skip your class. You do not come across as an intimidating person, and you are actually quite feminine. It is rather curious." It is a common notion in China that one has to be intimidating to manage other people. I may appear to be amiable because I follow Falun Gong's cultivation principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance, but my students find me respectful and solemn. Their knowing sides must be aware that I am sending forth righteous thoughts to eliminate all the elements that do not conform to the Fa. Naturally they are happy to come to my class. After all, who would give up such a good opportunity?
One day a parent approached me before I was about to teach a group of children at a performing arts class. She asked, "What on earth did you teach in class?" I thought the parent just wanted to understand my curriculum, so I gave her a brief description. "I tell them a story and then ask them to act the story out." She asked with a confused look, "Is that it?" "Yes." Next she said, "I am particularly curious about your class because my two sons become very obedient after each class with you. They read quietly or do their own things. But on the days they do not have your class, they fight with each other, especially when I leave them under the care of a nanny. After two classes with you, if I go out and leave them with my nanny, when I return home, she tells me they were very good and did not fight. I thought it was a coincidence at first, but it kept happening. This is why I was eager to know what you have taught them in school."
I choked up. I knew it was because Teacher instructed me to send forth righteous thoughts. Teacher said, "As you continually practice and follow our xinxing requirements in cultivation practice, your energy will gradually become more powerful." (Zhuan Falun)
2. Teacher's Fa Guides My Teaching at All Times
My students often ask, "Miss, have you studied psychology or are you a divine being? Why do you always know what is on our minds or what has happened to us?" I have observed that my students' performance reveals their attachments, especially when their performance did not give the audience a good feeling. It is when they have a peaceful mind or show their kind nature that they perform well.
When an ordinary teacher sees problems in a performance, they try to solve them with a certain technique. But these superficial solutions do not solve the problems from their root. I know from my cultivation practice that the problems are the result of human attachments.
If students fail to speak out loud when they read lines, I know they are blocking the world because they must have encountered something that bothered them. If their voices float, their bodies show excitement or they have confidence in their eyes, I know they are showing off because their desire for fame must have been satisfied. If a student performs well, but does not have interactions with others, he/she is likely to be a recluse and can rarely relate to other people's feelings.
Whenever I saw their attachments, which were the root cause of their performance problems, I would kindly point them out. They are often shocked to find that the root cause came from within. I would tell them, "My teacher says that a person's face is a reflection of his mind. They would listen with their innocent, sparkling eyes. In their next performance, they would manifest purity, power and tolerance. When they faced problems in their performance again, they would ask themselves, "What is wrong with my state of mind?" The fewer attachments they had, the purer their thoughts were, and the more they thought of others first, the faster they were able to master the techniques of performing arts.
Teacher keeps teaching us to search inward. Teacher said, "For a cultivator, looking within is a magical tool." ("Fa Teaching at the 2009 Washington DC International Fa Conference")
Looking inward is the source of my wisdom when I teach. One day a student tried a monologue. He tried a few times, but he was just rigid, and I tried many different ways to help him, but nothing worked. Finally I lost my patience and told him that he did not have the talent for performing arts. His performance turned out to be even worse. He was actually a very kindhearted student, and he even tried harder regardless of my harsh comments. However, the more he tried, the worse he became. I knew what his problem was and I had pointed it out to him, but why did it not help? He performed again in the class before the exam, and I felt terrible that he never hated me for my harsh comments. Teacher has sent me to save people, but why couldn't I treat him with pure kindness? Why did I teach him with the approach taught by the communist regime? What am I validating? Am I really validating Falun Gong's principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance? Who is in the wrong? Why didn't I look within? How is it not my fault? I suddenly realized the problem with my approach. I have been criticizing him, but what if I encourage him instead?
I immediately thought of a solution. I told him, "Very well. You have made progress. We now will take a more relaxed approach. Let's play a game of impersonation. I will call out the name of one of your classmates, then you will play this role as him or her. Act the way you think your classmate will interpret this role. Ha ha ha. It is not just one person you have to impersonate. It is a test how well you know your classmates. Okay, let's begin!"
I was happy yet felt like crying throughout the process. I thanked Teacher with my heart because he did an excellent job. One of the performances was particularly touching and very true to the character. When I asked how he did that, he explained that the classmate he imitated once played the role of an elderly father and it touched him deeply. That's how he got his inspiration.
When I looked inward, Teacher gave me wisdom to find a solution. What was the secret? He tried very hard. It might appear that he was very receptive to feedback from his classmates, but he was so eager to perform well that he could not let go of himself. I asked him to impersonate others so that he could imagine how others might interpret a role. He had to let go of himself in order to do that. That's how he immediately opened up his mind and thought from others' perspectives. He freed his body and mind. He even learned from the wisdom of his classmates. Of course, I had to let go of myself first before I could come up with this solution. Looking inward really is a magic tool.
Teacher has taught us to coordinate and cooperate with each other. I have learned from trials and errors that selfishness is the root cause of the lack of cooperation. Am I able to help my students to cooperate? The education in China has caused today's youth to be highly competitive, jealous, and wanting to show off. I tried to design a performing exercise to show how selfish they had become so as to disintegrate the influence of the CCP. I designed a game where the team that reaches the destination first wins. I placed various sizes of blocks for different stages in the class. I divided the class into four groups of four students. One person from each team was blindfolded and would walk through the obstacle course. He would be guided verbally by his teammates. This is a variation of an existing exercise. Instead of having only one person as a guide, my variation required three guides. Therefore, the three guides had to cooperate with each other. Each time the result was good. Those teams with guides fighting to talk always took the longest to finish. They disagreed with each other's instructions and sometimes even blamed each other and bickered. Those teams that finished the obstacle course first always had only one person speak and the other two added instructions only when necessary. They would whisper and discuss a better way to guide the blindfolded teammate.
The one thing that was interesting was that there was no exception. The losing team always consisted of those who liked to show off. The winning team always consisted of those who did not usually stand out and did not have a strong competitive spirit in the class exercises. They tended to care more about the safety of their blindfolded teammate. Each time we ran this exercise, the students would exchange their thoughts and analyze the reasons behind winning and losing. Those who were eager to win and usually stood out in class, became unusually quiet. Something seemed to register in their mind.
There was a young girl in class that used to enjoy professing her ideas. After that game, she would listen quietly to others' ideas when the class discussed a project. She would add her opinion only if necessary. I was surprised by her transformation. I asked her one day about it. She said, "You told us not to always try to express ourselves first, and to listen to other people's ideas more." I felt very gratified, and was very happy for her. She has become all the more popular among her peers. More importantly, I have been influencing people around me and disintegrating notions and behaviors that do not conform to the characteristics of the universe as I upgrade my cultivation level. The Fa is profound, and Teacher is compassionate. We have been transforming our environment and people in it while we cultivate in ordinary society.
When I upgrade my cultivation level, I have helped fellow practitioners as well.
A Falun Gong practitioner was studying vocal arts. She had excellent technique, but she lacked confidence. Her vocal teacher commented that she lacked energy and expression. We helped each other, and she gave me feedback on vocal arts and I gave her feedback on performing arts.
For a period of time I had been contemplating such subjects as: "What is personal cultivation?" and "What is cultivation in the Fa-rectification period?" She was about to perform a part from a famous opera in a small concert. When she rehearsed before me, she still lacked confidence. There was no sparkle in her eyes and her body was too relaxed. She told me that she was not nervous, but she did not know how to express herself because she lacked the desire to show off. I said, "But we must act like Falun Gong practitioners because we are practitioners in the Fa-rectification period. We are not cultivating in the personal cultivation stage. We are not showing ourselves off on stage, but exhibiting the elevated realm of music and art as a result of our elevated minds."
I shared my experiences of teaching performing arts with her. I quoted Teacher. Teacher said,
"Heaven serves as curtain,
with Earth as the stage
The Cosmos moves,
Heaven and Earth open
Everything through the ages,
came about for the Fa
The Falun turns,
renewing the Three Domains" ("Just a Play" in Hong Yin II)
I asked her to visualize herself standing on the giant stage of the universe where all lives can hear her singing. I asked her to visualize using her supernormal capabilities to direct all of her, from the microscopic to macroscopic level, to manifest her understanding of high realms. I asked her to validate the Fa to all the lives that can hear her singing. She sang one more time. A power of righteousness was suddenly released. Her eyes and her body began to speak. Yet I knew she could do better. I told her, "Your universe is not big enough. There are not enough lives to hear you sing. Your faith in the Fa has not been manifested to everyone. Can you do better?" She tried again, and each time she reached further. She started as a timid singer, and in the end, she became a Falun Gong practitioner singing from her heart and carrying faith in her eyes. She sang beautifully. In less than 30 minutes, we solved the problem that a renowned professor could not solve for a long time.
Zhuan Falun has brought us and non-practitioners infinite wisdom. One day I clarified the truth about Falun Gong to a friend in the art world. She had a positive view of Falun Gong and was interested in reading Zhuan Falun, so I gave her a copy. When we met the next time, she told me excitedly, "This is a wonderful book! It inspired me in performing and teaching." She used the inspiration in her class and her students performed unexpectedly well. Even her students were very touched and felt something very different.
Even a person who has not finished reading Zhuan Falun has benefited so much from it. How can you say that it is not a book from heaven? A few months ago I read an article on Minghui.org where a fellow practitioner said that he was inspired by Zhuan Falun when farming and attending to his paddies. Indeed, Teacher has inspired people in drama, painting, business management, etc. Everything you need to conduct yourself in life is written in Zhuan Falun. A non-practitioner might borrow a copy of Zhuan Falun in order to run a successful business. You will never find business principles or farming secrets in Zhuan Falun literally, yet Teacher has included everything in it. As long as we cultivate solidly and improve our xinxing, we will find what we need in the book. As we continue to improve, we will see more.
3. Teacher Showed Miracles to Help Me Save People
One day I suddenly had a migraine headache before class. I knew it was interference. I said in my heart, "No one has the right to interfere. I must not have a headache. Teaching class is a form of validating Falun Gong. I must save these lives." The migraine disappeared right away. I was as good as new. The classes that afternoon went very well. I even had an opportunity to clarify the truth about Falun Gong. My students were all ears and I did not have any fear. All of sudden, a student exclaimed, "Miss!" "What is wrong?" She said, "There is a Bodhisattva behind you! Oh, my! Now there is Maitreya Buddha behind you too! He is very tiny. The Bodhisattva is right behind you, but Maitreya Buddha is high up." I was touched. I knew Teacher was right beside me and watching over me, but an ordinary person could see these divine beings sent by Teacher. Other students could not see them, but the vision has helped them accept the truth about Falun Gong.
One day we were selecting a drama script for a show. Each time I would select a script that would help me clarify the truth about Falun Gong. Finally I selected two scripts as my final choice: One script was about World War II and the other about ancient Europeans persevering in their faith. I knew about the second script, but I had never really read it. I decided to study the Fa first. All of a sudden I felt something blinking beside me. I thought it was an illusion. Shortly afterwards I saw it again. I saw a throbbing light above the second script. I knew Teacher was hinting at me to choose this one. Indeed, this script gave me many opportunities to clarify the truth about Falun Gong during rehearsals. By the time the show was completed, everyone understood and accepted the truth about Falun Gong.
4. Inspired in Art Creation
I may be living in China and cannot join Shen Yun Performing Arts or the Divine Land Marching Band, but I think I can make a difference in China. I kept thinking of a way to create a similar effect as Shen Yun and the band.
Once I made up my mind, I made sure to send forth powerful righteous thoughts before each performance. I would sit on the side of the stage to send forth righteous thoughts and would not waste time chitchatting with actors. There were so many people in the audience every day. I would make the best of the opportunity. Because of Teacher's compassion, my shows always sold well. When my thoughts were pure, the state of mind of the actors was very good, their performances were purer, and the audience's reaction was good. However, when I was overcome with fame, the performance would not go well. The actors would alienate themselves from the roles they played on stage and would tell off-color jokes backstage, and the audience would jeer. It proved that pure righteous thoughts do have power over this realm. For each performance I would try my best to keep powerful righteous thoughts and prevent myself from being interfered with. If I failed to do well, I would hurry to rectify myself by looking inward.
Secondly, I would tell myself that teaching and creating arts was my way of saving people. In each performance I would remind myself that each look, motion, voice, and thought carried the power of Falun Gong. Many audience members would tell me after watching my performances, "You have a powerful qi field!" They knew only of the energy field, but they did not know I also carried the energy field of the Fa and powerful righteous thoughts. Many would tell me, "I feel like sleeping when other actors are performing on stage, but I don't feel like sleeping at all when you come out. No matter how many actors there are on stage, we cannot help following you." Or, "Your voice is not the loudest, but it is the clearest. How curious!" Indeed. Teacher said, "[...] this field can rectify all abnormal conditions."and “Different Levels Have Different Fa” (Zhuan Falun) Teacher also said, "Do not get attached to any dimension in your cultivation." ("An Explicit Reminder" from Essentials for Further Advancement)
One day I discovered that I could do better. Sending forth righteous thoughts can eliminate evil elements from other realms, but the audience will not have any respect for you if you do not perform well. A bad performance will affect the result of my truth-clarification work.
The projector was broken before the show that day. The backstage technicians were panicking. Although it had nothing to do with me directly, I suddenly remembered that Teacher has taught us that nothing happens coincidentally. There was one minute left until the show would begin. The lights were out. I told myself in the darkness, "I shall use my supernormal capabilities to perform on stage. I shall assist Teacher in the Fa-rectification." Then a miracle happened. I was driven by a powerful energy to act on stage. It felt effortless and precise. During the performance I would even think: How did I deliver this line so beautifully? How did I control the tempo so precisely? How did I express this dance so elegantly? After the show, two strangers came to my dressing room and praised me in excitement, "You are the best! You have acted perfectly!" My friends also told me I was spectacular that day. It was then I realized that we can use our supernormal capabilities for acting as long as our goal is pure.
There are too many experiences to share.
Teacher has given me wisdom to help me clarify the truth in the art world in China. Because of my excellent performances, many people respect and trust me, and have accepted the truth about Falun Gong. Many people have quit the CCP and/or its two affiliated student leagues. Once they have accepted the truth about Falun Gong, they have tried to secretly protect practitioners. I have also run into children who used to practice Falun Gong with their parents, but gave up the practice since the CCP banned Falun Gong. I am trying to bring them back. So far I have persuaded them to quit the CCP's student leagues. I will keep trying until I bring them back.
I decided to write this article because I realized that fellow practitioners in the art world rarely share their experiences of clarifying the truth about Falun Gong in the art arena. Every time I tried to write, I became very busy with work. I would like to implore fellow practitioners in the art world to share their stories too. Teacher said,
"I will tell you: Cherish the path that you have traveled and what you’ve done, cherish all of the time you’ve spent validating the Fa. What has passed shall never return." ("20th Anniversary Fa Teaching")
I would like to thank Teacher for His compassionate protection! I spent three days recalling my 18 years of cultivation and writing this article. Teacher has given me so much. If I do not cultivate well, as soon as I upgrade my xinxing a little, Teacher gives me enormous wisdom to save people. These are but a few stories in my 18 years of cultivation. I shall write more in the future and share them with fellow practitioners.
Thank you, Teacher!
Thank you, fellow practitioners!