(Minghui.org) Yesterday I heard the sad news that a relative of mine who started practicing Falun Dafa before 1999 had passed away. The last time I saw her was in the summer of 2011, when she was wheelchair bound after developing symptoms of a stroke. She could no longer express herself verbally and just smiled at me. However, she cried when I brought up the subject of cultivation.

A Diligent Practitioner's Health Deteriorated After Leaving Dafa Due to Increasing Pressure from the Persecution

She was in her 50’s when she was introduced to the practice and used to suffer from high blood pressure, but all her illnesses soon went away. During the busy farming season, she usually went to work the crop fields before dawn and didn’t call it a day until well past eight o’clock at night.

She was the local volunteer coordinator, and everyone would gather at her house in the evening to listen to Master’s lectures on audiotape and practice the exercises for one hour. After the practitioners left, she began to cook dinner and do house chores. I felt she was leading a very tiring life, yet she was full of energy and didn’t feel burdened at all.

Although she was a diligent practitioner, her life met with hardship when the persecution of Falun Gong began in 1999. At first she held firm to her belief when her children tried to stop her from cultivating. But with increasing pressure and a lack of contact with fellow practitioners, she eventually left Dafa. She developed symptoms of a stroke soon afterwards. In the years that followed, her condition only deteriorated.

A Second Relative Also Experienced Deteriorating Health Because He Failed to Step Forward to Clarify the Truth

I remembered another relative who was also his local Dafa coordinator. After the persecution began, he failed to step forward to clarify the truth and validate Dafa. Instead, he stayed home all day studying, transcribing the Fa and doing the exercises. He figured that was “cultivation.” Though he did the exercises often and studied a lot, his reading was limited to Zhuan Falun. He seldom read Master’s lectures written after 1999. He also experienced deteriorating health and eventually passed away in 2010.

A Third Relative's Prolonged Isolation from the Group and Interference from His Family Were Contributing Factors to His Passing Away

I also had a third relative who started cultivation practice in 1994, and he was held in high esteem for organizing his local group for Fa-study, doing the exercises and promoting Dafa.

However, after the persecution began in 1999, he was persuaded by his family to go to Beijing to do odd jobs and ended-up staying for three and a half years. When he eventually came back to his hometown, I showed him Master’s new lectures and articles published on Minghui. However, he went to Beijing again before he was able to finish reading all the materials. At the beginning of 2003, a practitioner family member talked him into returning home again.

This third relative failed to see the loss of staying away from the whole body of practitioners in his area. He thought he was doing pretty well in cultivation since he was still able to do the exercises and study the Fa at his workplace in Beijing (albeit secretly). Because of his outstanding performance, he was highly praised by his boss. Upon returning home, he kept studying the Fa, but was really behind in terms of catching-up with the Fa-rectification process.

His prolonged isolation from the group, lack of systematic study of Master’s new lectures and interference from his family were all contributing factors in his death.

After the publication of the Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party in November 2004, we realized the importance of group Fa-study and began to urge him to join us. Though he participated in the group study, he was still plagued by non-stop interference. He once again left us to stay with his daughter in Beijing.

When I asked him about his cultivation in Beijing after his return, he said with sadness, “Living there for two months felt like being confined in a prison. Out of the three things required of us, I could only manage to study the Fa in secret, since my son-in-law was opposed to my reading Dafa books.” Not long afterwards he developed sickness symptoms and eventually checked into a hospital. He passed away in October 2005.

A Fourth Relative Stayed away from the Group but Recently Resumed the Practice

A fourth relative of mine also started practicing Falun Dafa in 1994. At the beginning of the persecution, she still participated in some Fa-validation activities, but later moved out of town and thus left behind the whole body of practitioners.

At her new location, she wasn’t able to assimilate into a cultivation environment and gradually drifted further away from Dafa. When she eventually returned to her hometown, I gave her Master’s new lectures to read, but she refused to take a look and didn’t even want to talk about cultivation. To my surprise, she later resumed Dafa cultivation.

Young Dafa Practitioners Become No Different from Non-Practitioners After Gradually Leaving Dafa As they Grow Up

A lot of children followed their parents’ lead to study the Fa, do the exercises and participate in Dafa promotion when they were younger. Some of these youngsters were even fortunate enough to attend Master’s Fa-teaching seminars. However, as they grew older and went off to college or entered the workplace, they gradually slacked off and lost contact with a solid cultivation environment. When adding in the factor of the persecution, these young adults are now almost no different from non-practitioners.

Lesson Learned

Looking back, I realize that quite a few practitioner relatives of mine have passed away. How many of those little Dafa disciples are still cultivating? I urge everyone to wake-up and see the seriousness of cultivation. We should all follow Master’s instructions to look within unconditionally when encountering tribulations and stay diligent on our cultivation paths.

The Importance of Assimilating to the Fa

I'm writing this article because I just realized the importance of assimilating into the Fa. My fellow practitioners, I ask that we cherish the cultivation format bestowed to us by Master, that is, to join group Fa-study and practice and assimilate to the whole body of practitioners.

Each of us is like a drop of water, while the whole body of practitioners is like the ocean. A drop of water will soon evaporate once it leaves the ocean. Only by staying in the ocean can water drops achieve immortality.

Above are just some recent thoughts of mine. Please point out anything inappropriate.