Study and Memorize the Fa to Eliminate the Interference of Sleepiness
(Minghui.org) Through studying and memorizing the Fa, my wife (also a practitioner) and I were able to overcome the test of sleepiness during Fa study, practicing the exercises and sending forth righteous thoughts. For many years, we always wanted to change this state of sleepiness, but were unable to breakthrough it. Recently we started to memorize the Fa diligently, and then we were finally able to overcome this test.
Interference of Sleepiness
A few years ago, when I maintained an alert state while doing the exercises, I found it absurd when some practitioners mentioned that they often fell asleep when meditating and that their books dropped to the floor when they studied the Fa. I thought, “How can this be possible?” Later, however, I experienced this state myself. I also felt sleepy when sending forth righteous thoughts. Then I experienced the difficulty of overcoming this test.
I had this state of sleepiness for many years. In 2011, I usually went to sleep after I finished sending forth righteous thoughts at midnight. Then I would wake up at 3:40 in the morning to practice the exercises. However, I dozed off while doing the exercises. Later I thought, “Dozing off when doing the exercises? This won't do!” I also realized that if our cultivation state is not good, no matter how much work we do, it will be an ordinary person doing Dafa work. If I cannot reach the state full of spirit by sleeping only two to three hours a night, then I should not insist on it. Thus, in 2012 I went to sleep at 10 or 10:30 p.m. and got up at midnight to send forth righteous thoughts. I thought that by increasing my sleep, the phenomenon of dozing off when studying the Fa, practicing the exercises and sending forth righteous thoughts would be eliminated. Initially, there was some effect, but it did not solve the fundamental problem. Furthermore, over time I returned to my original state of dozing off. My wife was very anxious when she saw me dozing off. However, later she also started to doze off.
Through studying the Fa, we knew that this was interference from the evil. It is the evil that pushes down your palm when sending forth righteous thoughts and causes you to fall asleep, thus rendering you unable to have the proper effect. We sent forth righteous thoughts to eliminate this interference, but were still unable to overcome it.
Master said in Zhuan Falun,
“However, you should not fall asleep or lose consciousness, otherwise good things might be practiced by someone else.”
Sometimes, we would use our mobile phones to take photos and videos of each other. We were shocked when we saw ourselves dozing off when practicing the exercises and sending forth righteous thoughts. It was really shameful. Initially, our main consciousness strengthened after we saw these images of ourselves, and the sleepiness lessened. However, over a period of time we became numb to seeing this. Hence, the sleepiness did not stop, and we felt helpless.
Diligently Studying and Memorizing the Fa
Recently, other than reading Zhuan Falun every day, I read through the rest of the Dafa books once. While reading Master's lectures, I saw mention of disciples feeling sleepy when studying the Fa and practicing the exercises. I felt all the more that I must immediately breakthrough this state of sleepiness.
In “Teaching the Fa at the Assistants’ Fa Conference in Changchun,” Master said in response to a disciple's question on this issue:
“You fall asleep while studying the Fa, you fall asleep while reading the book, you also fall asleep while doing the exercises. You haven’t even broken through the beginning stage yet. It’s about willpower! As you know, during your cultivation, not only will all elements that constitute your humanness try to stop you from breaking away from being a human, but also everything that constitutes the human environment won’t let you leave. You have to break through everything and overcome all kinds of ordeals. The biggest manifestation is the suffering they create for you. Suffering comes in different forms, and sleepiness is one of them. Those people who aren’t able to cultivate or who aren’t diligent don’t realize that this is a form of hardship. You are unable to attain the Fa—it doesn’t let you study the Fa—and yet you aren’t even aware that it’s an ordeal. Unless your heart isn’t with the Fa or you don’t want to cultivate, why not overcome it? Strengthen your willpower. If a person could become a Buddha simply by overcoming sleepiness, I’d say it would be too easy. How will you cultivate yourself if you can’t even pass a small hurdle like this one?”
It is really very dangerous to doze off when practicing the exercises. After reading though all of the Dafa books, my wife and I started to memorize all of Master's teachings on dozing off when studying the Fa. We started to memorize the Fa after we finished practicing the exercises and sending forth righteous thoughts in the morning. We memorized the Fa diligently and continuously, and we gained a better understanding on the cause of sleepiness when studying the Fa, practicing the exercises and sending forth righteous thoughts and the consequences of not overcoming this test. Through this, we got our wake-up call.
We enlightened that it was due to our thought karma or external interference that we dozed off when studying the Fa, practicing the exercises and sending forth righteous thoughts. The interference was to prevent us from obtaining the Fa and elevating. It is disrespectful to Master when we feel sleepy during Fa study, and we would not be able to obtain the Fa in that state. When feeling sleepy, we were unable to read more than a few sentences for a long time. When practicing the fifth exercise, my upper hand would occasionally fall to my knee when the state of sleepiness occurred. My wife's head and body would occasionally bend by 90 degrees when she meditated. When we sent forth righteous thoughts in a state of sleepiness, our palms would move back and forth like a fan. We realized that if we wanted to change this state, we had to increase our determination to study the Fa.
Improvement Will Come When We Truly Cultivate
Initially, I did not feel sleepy when I started to practice the exercises and send forth righteous thoughts. However, when I closed my eyes slightly, I still unknowingly fell asleep. One day before I was about to mediate, I suddenly realized that the Fa is here to guide us in cultivation. It will not work if I only memorize the Fa but do not truly cultivate myself.
Master said in “Teaching the Fa at the Assistants’ Fa Conference in Changchun”:
“I don’t believe that if you keep your eyes open you’ll still fall asleep! Open your eyes during the exercises if you can’t control it. You have to pass this hurdle.”
Only by following Master's Fa can one truly cultivate. I decided that I would start to practice with my eyes open. Even if I felt sleepy, I would still keep my eyes open. My wife and I reached a consensus that only by doing so could we overcome the interference of sleepiness.
As a result, when practicing the fifth exercise, we were able to stay alert, minute by minute, following Master's voice and the exercise music. During this period, I became sleepy numerous times. I thought, “If I close my eyes, I will allow the interference to win, so I insist on keeping my eyes open and listening to Master's words.” Following this approach, my wife and I did not fall asleep, and we were clearly aware that we were practicing the exercises, day after day.
Originally, we did not show respect to Master and the Fa when studying the Fa. My wife would sit on the bed with her back against the heater, and she would doze off after studying the Fa for not more than half an hour. When she became very sleepy, she would get into bed after studying not more than half a lecture in Zhuan Falun. Now, we sit on chairs or in the lotus position on the sofa. If there is any sign of sleepiness, I stand up and study the Fa while standing, not giving the interfering elements any chance to exploit my gap. Thus, I am able to read one lecture of Zhuan Falun from beginning to end without letting up after dinner. My quantity and quality of Fa study has greatly improved.
In regard to sending forth righteous thoughts, Master said in “Righteous Thoughts,”
“Closing your eyes and not closing your eyes both have the same effect when you send righteous thoughts.”
Finally, we were able to breakthrough the state of sleepiness while studying the Fa, practicing the exercises and sending forth righteous thoughts.
The Fa Is Universal
The key to having a breakthrough in all kinds of tests is to study the Fa more and improve on the basis of the Fa. Only by studying the Fa more will the power of the Fa manifest itself. When we truly study and diligently memorize a considerable amount of the Fa, the Fa will enlighten us on how to handle things, and we will be able to overcome tests.
In the past, when I slept five to six hours a night, the most I ever slept, I didn't hear the alarm right away in the morning. Since experiencing the breakthrough described above, however, even when I had to sleep a lot less due to my busy schedule, I could easily wake up five minutes before the set alarm time. I think this was Master encouraging me to be more diligent. Thank you, respected Master!
My wife and I hope that sharing our experience will help fellow practitioners who are still experiencing the interference of sleepiness.