(Minghui.org) I am a young Dafa practitioner from rural China. With Master’s guidance and protection, I've been able to walk the path of cultivation. I would like to share some of my experiences of validating the Fa during the past two years, in the hope that young practitioners don't make the same mistakes that I did.
Living in the Material World
I started on the path of cultivation when I was a child. After my father was forced to leave home on July 20, 1999—when the persecution of Falun Dafa began—my mother was left with the responsibility of taking care of the whole family. Shortly after, I decided to wholeheartedly walk the path of cultivation and validate the Fa.
In the beginning, I only clarified the truth within the confines of my local village. However, since there were so many practitioners in our village, everyone knew that Dafa was good. Thus, I wanted to clarify the facts outside of the village, like the older practitioners did. When I heard that others had delivered a lot of informational materials and helped save a lot of sentient beings, I admired them and wanted to go with them. But they told me that I was still too young and should wait until I was older.
Time flew by, and before I knew it, I was ready to enter senior-middle school in another city. I knew then that I was ready to venture outside of my village to save more sentient beings.
"Wandering about is pretty hard—he goes from place to place, begging for food and running into all kinds of people who laugh at him, and insult him, or take advantage of him. He runs into all kinds of things." (Zhuan Falun)
However, instead of diligently cultivating myself while attending senior-middle school, I became dazzled by society's violence, indecency, alcohol consumption, and smoking. As a result, I gradually slacked off in my cultivation and even competed with others for petty things. I struggled to deal with my budding lust, and was driven by the attachment of comfort and ease. I also yearned for a happy life, like an everyday person, and completely forgot about Fa-study; sending righteous thoughts, and clarifying the truth.
Although I had lost myself in the material world, compassionate Master had not given up on me. He patiently waited for me to wake up out of my stupor. Several times, I dreamed that I was studying the Fa with other practitioners, like I did in the past. I knew that Master was giving me a hint to study the Fa. Due to my attachment of laziness, and my desire for comfort and ease, I did not listen to Master's audio lectures and sometimes even fought with my classmates over trivial matters of personal gain. As a result, my grades plummeted, as did my class ranking.
Once I dreamed that practitioners from my local village and I were doing the exercises in my backyard. Suddenly, the sky was filled with colorful clouds and lotus flowers, along with celestial music. Some practitioners said that both the time for validating the Fa in the human world and the calamity that was to befall mankind would occur that evening.
I suddenly realized that I still had a lot of sentient beings to save. I rushed home to call as many people as I could from the phone book. I wanted to tell them “Falun Dafa is good, Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance is good” to save them. However, no matter how hard I tried, I could not find the phone book!
While the other practitioners around me were busy getting ready to sit on the beautiful lotus flowers in the sky, I got very upset and felt like I would rather die then endure this sadness. I woke up in tears, regretting the fact that I had wasted so much time chasing after human pursuits, instead of doing the three things well. I immediately got up and started to study the Fa.
This was the first paragraph I read when I opened the book:
“Cultivation practice is not child’s play. It is more serious than anything of everyday people—it isn’t something to take for granted. Once you miss the opportunity, when will you be able to get a human body again in the sixfold path of reincarnation? Opportunity knocks but once. Once the illusion that you cannot let go of disappears, you will realize what you have lost.” (“Practicing Cultivation after Retirement” from Essentials for Further Advancement)
When I looked inside myself, I realized that I had always relied on my parents to encourage me on my cultivation path, so I did not study the Fa from my heart. After the persecution began, I only had a perceptual understanding of the Fa, rather than a rational understanding, therefore I did not firmly believe in the Fa.
Moreover, some of my fundamental attachments had not been completely eradicated, and I still held on to many human notions. This was the main reason why I fell so far, so fast, during my years at senior-middle school.
Then, one day, I suddenly became aware of the great mission that every Dafa practitioner is to fulfill, and began to cherish this grand opportunity given to us. To eradicate my many attachments, I used every free moment to recite the Fa and kept strong righteous thoughts, as much as I could. I also reminded myself that I was a Dafa practitioner and that I needed to look inside myself whenever I ran into conflicts or interference.
Studying the Fa and Clarifying the Truth
Due to my attachment of fear, whenever I read the Fa in my dorm, I pretended that I was reading some ordinary book. I was afraid that someone would find out that I was studying the Fa. This was disrespectful to both Master and the Fa.
When I realized my mistake, I decided to rectify the environment in my dorm. At the start of the second semester, I took the responsibility for cleaning up my dorm and did not argue with anyone over anything. In addition, I listened to my teachers and paid more attention to cultivating my speech.
When someone praised me, I always said, “I am a Dafa practitioner. That is why I do what I do.” Since my classmates knew that Dafa was good, some of them asked to borrow my MP5 player to listen to the Fa. Others wanted to listen to Dafa music with me.
“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.” (Essentials for Further Advancement II)
I realized that it is not that hard for practitioners to extricate themselves from the perils of this material world, if they truly treat themselves as practitioners; believe firmly in Master and the Fa, and keep righteous thoughts. If we hold onto godhood with one hand and to humanness with the other, the old forces will take advantage of our loopholes.
Lately, I noticed that some attachments and thoughts related to the evil Party culture have become weaker and weaker, especially while I am clarifying the truth to strangers.
A classmate of mine recently asked me if I would help him clarify the facts to some of his friends and family members. I told him I would be happy to. Once, he climbed a high wall to retrieve a shuttlecock for another student. The student on the ground looked up and sarcastically asked, “Are you a Falun Dafa practitioner?” My classmate used the opportunity to clarify the truth to him.
I felt happy watching this non-practitioner bravely defend Dafa after he understood the truth. Not even I, a veteran practitioner, could do what he did. When I look back, I realize how much time I had wasted being hesitant and fearful of stepping forward for Dafa. In addition, when I spoke to people in the past about Dafa, I always spoke at too high a level, didn't send righteous thoughts to clear up my field or theirs, and felt resentful towards people when they did not accept the truth about Dafa.
Removing the Attachment of Lust
Although I had gotten rid of a lot of attachments over these past two years, the attachment of lust seemed to be deeply hidden in me—thus I found it especially hard to remove. At first, I mistakenly thought that lust was a normal physiological response between the sexes, especially between young people.
However, the more I thought like this, the more my attachment of lust grew. At some point, I found it almost impossible to pass the test of lust in my dreams. Later, I realized that lust was just another human attachment, something that practitioners needed to get rid of—especially since Master had already adjusted our bodies.
I realized that if I did not completely remove all of my human attachments, especially the attachment of lust, I would be ruined in the end and would fail in cultivation.
At first, I made sure I did not read filthy novels, look at dirty pictures, or watch adult movies, even when most of the boys in my dorm were doing just that. At that time, I spent a lot of time reciting the Fa specifically related to the issue of lust. I also sent righteous thoughts to clean up my own field and the field around me.
Before I went to bed every night, I recited the following passage of Master's Fa, "I’m no average person. I’m a practitioner. Don’t treat me this way. I cultivate Falun Dafa." (Zhuan Falun)
I also downloaded the series of articles, “Eliminating the Attachment to Sexual Desire,” from Minghui.org, and read each article very carefully. Gradually, I succeeded in removing the attachment of lust. In the end, I felt extremely light and peaceful. Whenever I spoke to girls while clarifying truth, I kept a proper emotional distance.
After I got rid of the attachment of sentimentality and threw off the shackles of lust, I found that I was no longer bound by conventional thinking concerning this issue. If we as practitioners get stuck in the trap of sentimentality, we could lose this scared opportunity of the ages. Actually, when a practitioner makes up his mind to get rid of an attachment, cultivates his xinxing, and believes firmly in Master and the Fa, he will be able to get rid of any attachment.
I know one young practitioner who used to be very diligent, but later became polluted by the material world. He used to get into fights with his parents and did not behave like a practitioner. Other young practitioners that I know were unable to extricate themselves from the allure of modern-day society. Some refused to return to the cultivation path with the excuse that they didn't have enough time, as they were too busy with their schoolwork. Others forgot about cultivation altogether and, instead, talked about achieving some worldly goals.
I wish I could wake every one of these practitioners up by sharing my own cultivation experiences with them. If we all came to the world to attain the Fa and to complete our historic missions, then we are all connected to Master, the Fa, and each other. If we lose this opportunity of the ages because we are unwilling to give up our different human attachments, we will eternally regret it in the future.
As we all know, on the day that Dafa practitioners are to consummate, those who walked their paths well will ascend in broad daylight. Will you be one of them?