(Minghui.org) Although I have been practicing Falun Gong for seventeen years, I have never had a good understanding of the Fa principle of what it means to truly be a good person. However, I have gradually gained a better understanding of this issue over the past six months. If I had not paid close attention to being diligent about Fa study and truly grasping the Fa, I might not be alive today.
After I retired, my father became ill, then my mother, and now my mother-in-law. My understanding was that as practitioners, we were supposed to do the three things well to validate the Fa, but I did not realize what I was doing wrong. Why did they become ill one after another? When my father was hospitalized, I stayed with him every night for about a week. Shortly after that my mother broke her wrist, so I visited her every day at her house. As soon as her wrist got better, she was diagnosed with glaucoma and was also hospitalized. So I then stayed with her every night. When her eyes got better from the glaucoma, she became dazed from a brain ischemia. I took her back to the hospital every morning for treatment, and did not get home until early afternoon. I then still had to cook lunch. I was exhausted!
My mother then broke her hip bone, and I stayed with her for nearly a month to take care of her. I was unable to sleep well during that time. I went home each day and took care of the housework, and in the evening I delivered the food that I had prepared for my parents to the hospital. I was too tired to function properly and asked my father if we could pay for someone to help take care of my mother. My father insisted, “I can't let others take care of your mother. I'll stay with her day and night so that you can go home and rest.” He was in his 80s. How could I let him take care of my mother 24 hours a day? I continued to watch over her in the evenings until she left the hospital. Finally, I was able to go home and rest, but I was still going back and forth between my home and my parents' home to look after them.
Eventually, I began to have health problems. I developed anuria and edema, and had difficulty walking. I had stomach pains all night long and kept vomiting horrible substances. I lost a lot of weight and my skin had changed from having a rosy complexion to looking pale and a sickly yellow. I had turned into a thin and sick old woman, but my family still kept asking me to do things for them. In order to prove that Dafa practitioners don't get ill, I did not talk about my pain or suffering to others and continued to study the Fa.
Through Fa study I was able to find my attachments. My symptoms gradually disappeared and my health improved. My parents were also feeling much better, but I still took care of their housework. One day, my mother said that her eyes were feeling uncomfortable and she had to stay in the hospital again. I thought, “Oh no, I'm going to have to take care of her again.” Then I realized, “I'm a practitioner, why are there so many things troubling me? I should not let the old forces use my parents to interfere with me.” Two days later, my mother told me that the doctor said that she did not need an operation, and that he would prescribe some medication for her eyes instead. It was like what Teacher said:
“If thoughts are righteous,
evil will collapse.” (“What’s to Fear?” in Hong Yin Volume II)
I received a phone call one day and was told that my mother-in-law had a stroke and was unconscious. I thought I was doomed again. Although I did not have to look after her, how could I do the three things well if she had to stay with us? Amidst my worries, I remembered that I was a practitioner and that nothing should prevent me from validating the Fa. The next day, my husband came home and told me that his mother had regained consciousness and was able to move around. She remained in the hospital for a month and had totally recovered within six months. It was another test to see if I had strong righteous thoughts!
I have experienced so many tribulations because my righteous thoughts were not strong. On the third morning of the Chinese New Year, my mother developed cerebral thrombosis and was hospitalized again. I could not figure out how to get rid of the old forces' interference, and managed to convince my father to hire a caretaker to look after her. My mother was extremely demanding, and her caretaker eventually quit. We kept hiring new caretakers, but they all quit after a few days. My husband and I then took turns helping out. We would wake up at 3 a.m. to change shifts with the caretaker at my mother's house. Although my husband went there more often than I did, it was still hard on me. Upon returning home at 9 a.m., I felt drowsy when I studied the Fa. All I wanted to do in the afternoon was sleep. I was seriously interfered with by the old forces and could not do the three things well.
As I was sending forth righteous thoughts one time, I realized that from the time I started cultivation, I had never really known how to truly be a good person. One day at work a colleague said, “Since Falun Gong practitioners are good people, you should wait on me.” Then when a group of colleagues played Mahjong at lunchtime, they often told another practitioner and me that we should go grocery shopping, cook and clean up after them after eating. How can practitioners wait on people like this? Although I knew it was wrong to do this, I didn't know how to say no. I didn't understand what practitioners are supposed to do until eight years later, when I was extremely exhausted from waiting on others. Bending over backwards to do things for others is not being a good person. Practitioners safeguarding the Fa, saving sentient beings and eliminating interference is truly being righteous and good. Practitioners not having attachments to self-interest does not mean that we should just do what others want us to do.
When I finally understood these Fa principles, my mother stopped being so demanding and difficult. Although the tribulations are not completely over, I realized that if practitioners do not have enough righteous thoughts, tribulations can threaten our lives. But once our righteous thoughts emerge, everything will be miraculously resolved.