Cherish the Opportunity of Coordinating with Fellow Practitioners, and Fulfill the Mission of Saving Sentient Beings
Greetings Revered Master! Greetings fellow practitioners!
In February of 1998, I was very fortunate to obtain the Fa in Taiwan. Six months later, I went to the University of California, Los Angeles, to pursue my Ph.D degree. Under Master’s compassionate care, I went through the stage that centered on personal cultivation, and continued on to practice cultivation amidst the Fa-rectification. I practiced with fellow practitioners, and clarified the truth in many different projects. Los Angeles is a large city, and also very international. There were many projects in Los Angeles. Practitioners often have group Fa-study, practice the exercises together, and share experiences within the group.
After graduation, I landed a full-time teaching job in a tranquil and isolated college town in Northern Michigan. I really hoped to help the sentient beings in this area understand the truth. Therefore, I tried to contact fellow practitioners, hoping that we could work together and clarify the truth. However, in terms of driving time, the city I am living in, is about 6 hours away from Milwaukee, 8 hours away from Chicago, and 9-10 hours away from Detroit. In other words, to find a fellow practitioner, I have to travel hundreds of miles. So, how can I help sentient beings in this area understand the truth? Although the environment of my cultivation practice changed, the three things that Master asks us to do well, did not change. I did some research on the geographical environment of this area. I found that this is an area with a huge amount of land and natural resources, but a small population. However, a Tech University is located 100 miles away from the city where I live. It is another college town which is smaller and even more isolated than my town. But there are hundreds of Chinese people living there. I thought: “I have to use any possible means to let the sentient beings and those precious Chinese people know the truth.”
In the beginning, I tried to contact an Asian grocery store in that town, hoping that they would carry The Epoch Times in their store. But the owner of this store listened to the opinion of some Chinese students and declined my request.
In the year 2006, the CCP’s crimes of forced organ harvesting was exposed. I registered at a local summer festival event in that town, so that I could start a petition drive and clarify truth there. In addition to the truth-clarification material I brought with me when I moved from California to Michigan, I printed petition forms, ordered banners from fellow practitioners in another state, and purchased tables, display boards, and a canopy. I also brought three reprints of paintings from the “Truth, Compassion, Tolerance International Art Exhibition” to a professional framing store for framing. After a few days of preparation, I drove to the event with a full trunk of truth material and many other things. However, upon arrival, I realized that the event was held on the lakeshore, and it was much too windy to set up the big, heavy canopy by myself. So, I left it in my vehicle. I was truly missing the days when I cooperated with fellow practitioners in various events in Los Angeles. It was very precious to be able to work with fellow practitioners.
After setting up the booth, I started to distribute flyers and collect signatures. I felt sad that the truth material and the reprints of the paintings were all displayed under the scorching sun. Then I thought: “The purpose of doing everything is saving sentient beings.” So I concentrated on truth clarification. Many local residents had not heard of Falun Dafa and the persecution in China. Some of them showed their support by signing the petition. Some of them looked at the paintings for a long time, appearing deeply moved.
I saw a Chinese family in the crowd. I brought the newspaper version of Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party with me and approached the family, to speak with them. The Chinese man became very upset after seeing the Epoch Times newspaper and shouted at me with anger. His wife said gently: “Don’t behave like that, we should go.” As they were leaving, he still shouted: “Get out of here!” At that point, I had a human mindset, and felt very embarrassed. I left quietly, although I worried about this sentient being’s future very much. I could only hope that he will have another opportunity to understand the truth in the future. If there were fellow practitioners with me, to send him righteous thoughts, he might be willing to stay and listen to the facts. It reminded me of the importance and preciousness of working with fellow practitioners.
It was not enough to count on myself. In order to fulfill the mission of saving sentient beings, I had to do my best to contact fellow practitioners and work with them. Meanwhile, I need to know the details and characteristics of each local area. I cannot just copy the ways that I used in a metropolitan area and apply them here.
After getting in touch with fellow practitioners in Michigan and some nearby states, I obtained a lot of help from them. Under Master’s arrangement, the project of setting up a distribution site of The Epoch Times also had a breakthrough. A fellow practitioner went to the Tech University in that town to pursue his Ph.D. degree. He had a better understanding about the shopping behavior of local Chinese students, faculty, and their families. He recommended another store to be a candidate of the distribution site. I listened to him and took his advice. Next, we coordinated with each other. When one of us contacted the store, the other person sent forth righteous thoughts to clear all interference. With this practitioner’s help, the distribution site was successfully set up. The Epoch Times was brought to local Chinese people.
I was fortunate to join the team of answering hotline phone calls of Shen Yun’s performances, and the team of clarifying truth to government officials. The requirements of coordination became more, and higher, after that. Sometimes I did not do things well. Fellow practitioners would point out my shortcomings and helped me upgrade my xinxing. I am very grateful to fellow practitioners for their help. I reminded myself that I need to cultivate well, do the three things that Master asked us to do, so that I can do a better job with helping sentient beings understand the truth. I told myself that they are all precious sentient beings that Master wishes to save, and I would like to give them that opportunity.
When Shen Yun performances were held in Michigan this year, fellow practitioners told me that a lady who purchased tickets via hotline brought a bouquet of beautiful flowers to the front desk before the show started, saying that it was a gift for me. I thought these beautiful flowers should be presented to our compassionate Master. I hope I can coordinate with fellow practitioners well so that more sentient beings can come to see the performance of Shen Yun, understand the truth, and be saved by Master.
The 2001 earthquake and tsunami in Japan took many lives in Japan in a very short period of time. Time magazine had a cover picture of a Japanese lady who cried sadly and hopelessly in the aftermath of the disaster. It is heartbreaking. I place a copy of this magazine in my living room, reminding myself that I should not slack off on doing the three things. I do not want to see sentient beings suffer and cry sadly and hopelessly in the future. They have been waiting for this moment for thousands of years. I should not disappoint them.
I am very grateful to our compassionate Master for arranging many opportunities to clarify the truth. I teach economics at a university. Many modern economics textbooks talk about the market of organ transplant. Therefore, it is natural for me to clarify truth and present a documentary about organ harvesting in class. I have done it for years, knowing that it is the greatest gift for my students.
My University held a forum and invited me to give a speech in the forum. I accepted it and tried to incorporate the truth about the persecution into my speech. On the day of the presentation, the president and the provost of my university attended the forum as well. I was glad that I did not miss this opportunity. When the white house petition was initiated near the end of last year, fellow practitioners suggested informing college professors of this issue. It is convenient to use group e-mail since many people would get the information immediately. However, there are downsides as well. First, group-emailing may cause complaints. Second, misunderstanding may occur if any recipient replied to the entire group with an inappropriate comment. To better help the sentient beings, I chose customized e-mails. I used the time between answering hotline phone calls to send a private e-mail to each of my colleagues and some staff members, asking them to sign the white house petition to help save lives. I also customized the e-mails sent to the faculty members I am familiar with. Although it took me about two weeks to finish the entire project, I received many replies expressing their support and encouragement. I was happy for these sentient beings.
Two things occurred during the process of truth clarification this year. They helped me realize the importance of coordinating with fellow practitioners and forming one body. The first thing is writing truth-clarification articles in the student newspaper of my university. The editor of the student newspaper of my university invited a few professors to write Op-Ed articles. I was invited too. I thought this was not accidental. The readers of this student newspaper include not only students, faculty, and staff members in my university, but also community members and local government officials. I had to cherish the opportunity of clarifying the truth in the newspaper.
The first article was about stopping forced organ harvesting in China. I sent my draft to two western fellow practitioners for professional proofreading and copy-editing. We discussed the revision with each other and then finalized the article. The article was published in the newspaper one week after the submission. The second article was more difficult to write. I planned to write an article about Shen Yun. However, how could I introduce the beauty of Shen Yun to readers in an Op-Ed article? I spent a few days to write it, and then asked a western practitioner in Michigan to polish the article for me. Although I received the editor’s criticism on the style of my article and had to revise it further, the article was published because I coordinated with fellow practitioners and formed one body. The third article was about supporting the movement of quitting the CCP. After I finished the draft, I tried to contact another practitioner for help, but did not get a response. Because the due date was approaching, I hastened to submit the draft to the editor. A lot of interference appeared afterwards. The article was not published. I calmed down and looked inward. I saw my loophole. I did not communicate and coordinate with fellow practitioners well to form one body. That was why I did not do the job well.
The second thing is about clarifying truth in workshops. To enrich students’ skills and knowledge, my university holds two series of workshops each year. These workshops cover a wide variety of topics. I consider them as opportunities created by Master to help sentient beings understand the truth. Hence, I have been participating in these biannual workshops since 2006. When holding a workshop, I introduce the beauty of Falun Dafa to the attendees first, and then clarify the truth about the persecution.
When the first workshop was about to be held last semester, a blizzard warning was issued. I was informed that the workshop would be cancelled if the university was closed. However, I could reschedule it to another date. I thought that many people had registered for the workshop. If they missed the opportunity to understand the truth this time, they may miss it forever.
I thought about sending an e-mail to Michigan practitioners' e-mail list for help. In the beginning, I hesitated since I worried about bothering fellow practitioners. Many practitioners were busy. I was not sure if it was appropriate to bother fellow practitioners with the interference happening to a local workshop. Then, I changed my mind. This kind of notion was a human mindset and an attachment as well. Why do we do all these things? We do them for sentient beings. We hope the sentient beings will have a beautiful future. Then, I sent an e-mail to fellow practitioners and asked everyone to help send forth righteous thoughts for the workshop. It was about 10 p.m. already. When I woke up in the morning, I turned on my TV and got the good news that the blizzard had weakened. The university was open, and the workshop was held as scheduled. I witnessed the magnificent power of one body formed by Dafa disciples. I thanked compassionate Master for saving sentient beings. I was also grateful to fellow practitioners for their selfless help.
In the process of cultivation practice and clarifying truth, I often realized the importance of looking inward. When I did not do things well, or when I failed to complete a project, I looked inward. Sometimes, it was due to a wrong approach, sometimes, it happened because I slacked on Fa study, practicing exercises, or sending forth righteous thoughts. Sometimes it was because I did not coordinate with fellow practitioners well. Sometimes, it happened because I did not discard my human attachments, and then these human attachments became the obstacles for sentient beings understanding the truth. I know I still have many attachments. But time is pressing, I need to get rid of my attachments immediately whenever I identify them. I need to follow Master’s instructions solidly and practice cultivation diligently so that I can fulfill the mission of helping Master rectify the Fa and save sentient beings, and fulfill my vow.
Let us cherish the opportunity that Master gives us and coordinate with fellow practitioners better so that we can do a better job saving sentient beings. The above is my limited understanding in my current level of cultivation practice. Please kindly point out anything inappropriate. Thank you, compassionate great Master. Thank you, fellow practitioners. Heshi.
(Presented at the 2013 US Midwest Falun Dafa Sharing Conference)