Indiana: Experience-Sharing Conference Held at Purdue University
(Minghui.org) Indiana practitioners held an experience-sharing conference at Purdue University on February 7, 2015, the day before the Chinese New Year.
Not only did the event allow for participants to share experiences and improve in cultivation, it was also an opportunity for the entire group to wish Master Li, founder of Falun Gong, a happy New Year.
Being Considerate of Others
Professor Xu, who has been practicing Falun Gong for nearly 20 years, shared his experiences in promoting Shen Yun. “In particular, I learned to stop complaining about this or that.” But it was easier said than done, so he often reminded himself to let go of negative thoughts. Now the situation is much better than before.
As time continues, Xu realized that there were more human notions behind the complaints. “I came to understand that we need to be considerate of others. By doing that, we would share our understandings and exchange information in a timely manner. When there is no barrier among ourselves, even if something unexpected comes up, we would be able to handle it well.”
One example is that the local coordinator asked him to organize group exercise and two times for the group to send righteous thoughts every day. “We formed one group on the internet to get up at 4:50 a.m. to send righteous thoughts and then do the exercises. We have kept this schedule every day.” Xu encountered severe interference in the first days, and he suffered a sharp pain in his ankle.
Recalling Master Li's lectures, he knew it could be a process of eliminating karma, or interference from the old forces. Bearing in mind the importance of being a coordinator, he strengthened his righteous thought and the situation quickly improved.
Daily Responsibilities Are Cultivation Opportunities
Cole, another professor teaching in a public university said he was sometimes confused by the balance between cultivation, life, and work. “I knew cultivation was most important, but sometimes it seemed to conflict with other things I needed to do.” This internal struggle lasted a long time and he knew he needed a breakthrough.
When thinking about it further, he had a deeper understanding of Master's lecture in Teaching the Fa at the Conference in Singapore, “What I’ve taught you is to cultivate while conforming as much as possible to the way of everyday people’s society.” Being a Falun Gong practitioner means one needs to fulfill family responsibilities and be mindful of other family members. “I need to handle it well, not just to avoid troubles. In fact, family life itself is part of my cultivation.”
Similar things happened at his workplace. “When looking within, I noticed my attachment to fame as well as jealousy.” Knowing such human notions could be difficult to eliminate, Cole said he has faith in Master and the Fa. “I will study the Fa more because Master told us, 'The Fa can break all attachments, the Fa can destroy all evil, the Fa can shatter all lies, and the Fa can strengthen righteous thoughts.' (“Drive Out Interference” in Essentials for Further Advancement II)”
Improving Oneself When Seeing Problems in Others
Xi, a practitioner who works at a college, found Shen Yun promotion was a good cultivation opportunity for her. “I used to have negative thoughts against some practitioners, thinking they have a strong ego and are unwilling to change.” After this issue continued for a long time with little progress, she examined herself and realized she also had similar problems—in fact, what she saw in other practitioners was just like a mirror that reflected her own attachments.
Another thing she learned during Shen Yun promotion was to sacrifice and endure hardship while saving people with compassion. One day as she was walking from house to house putting up door hangers, a man came out of his home and began chatting with her. The man said he and his family went to watch Shen Yun every year, and they liked the performance very much. He also thanked Xi for her efforts, saying, “I know you must have worked very hard on this.”
Xi said she learned a lot from this, “The man's words were very encouraging. Sometimes we may be picky and avoid some approaches to reach out to people because it involves hard work. In fact, everyone has been waiting for this for a long time. If such efforts could save people, I am willing to do it.”
Community college professor Jin said she has come to understand the importance of righteous thoughts. “For example, I may have complaints towards someone or something related to me. From Fa-study, I know I should maintain righteous thoughts and do not let such human notions interfere with our efforts of assisting Master to save sentient beings.”
Realizing the seriousness of cultivation, Jin said she has been striving harder in this regard lately. She often reminded herself of Master's words, “Instead, you are placing yourselves in Dafa. Like a particle of Dafa, [you feel that] no matter what it is, you should just do it.” (“Teaching the Fa at the Great Lakes Fa Conference in North America”) Gradually, her complaints and negative thoughts faded away.
Attachment to Comfort
“When I was in China, one family member was detained for practicing Falun Gong and I was forced to stay away from home. In that environment, it was crucial to maintain righteous thoughts and do three things well every day,” recalled Xiao, a practitioner who came overseas in 2013.
Although now enjoying the freedom in the US, Xiao said she felt distracted and no longer diligent in her cultivation. “Especially after I had a baby. I became attached to my baby, my family, and a comfortable life.” Many of her human notions, which had been suppressed by the harsh situation in China, had re-emerged.
“I appreciate the opportunity today, because we have come together to look within and do better on our cultivation journeys. Any complaint or negative thought could drag us into the trap set up by old forces,” Xiao said. “It's time to take cultivation seriously, in everything. This is because cultivation and assisting Master with Fa-rectification is very sacred.”