[Celebrating World Falun Dafa Day] I Went From Being the Lowest Ranked Student to Winning the Top National Scholarship
(Minghui.org) I was considered a problem child in elementary school and ranked lowest in my class. By the time I went to college, I had won the top national scholarship. All the changes in me were because of my belief in Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance.
This all started 1998 when my mother began practicing Falun Dafa. She then introduced Dafa to me.
At the time, my scores were often the lowest in my class, and my misbehavior was causing problems for everyone. As a result, my teachers decided to assign the class monitor to sit next to me. To their dismay, his grades soon went down from 90% to 60%. I was told that it was all due to my influence.
My parents lived in the family quarters of their work unit. Our neighbors were mostly my parents' colleagues and their kids, who were also my schoolmates. I often ended up getting into fights with them. As a result, their parents told them not to associate with me.
It was also natural for me to tell lies. I even stole things from classmates. My parents were often called to school by my teachers and class adviser. They often ended up scolding and beating me in front of everyone.
My class adviser told me, “Even your parents have given up on you. What else can we teachers do?”
An Opportunity to Turn My Life Around
After my mother began practicing Falun Dafa, she changed from being hot-tempered to mild-mannered and no longer beat or scolded me. My parents also used to argue with each other. But after starting cultivation practice, my mother kept saying she would first look for anything she did wrong and try to correct herself whenever a problem came up. She decided to quit playing mahjong and devote more time to my education instead.
My mother set an example for me by following Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance. I really saw how Falun Dafa brought changes to my family, and it took root in my heart.
After following my mother to practice Falun Dafa, a lot changed in me. I realized that telling lies or stealing from others was wrong, and that if we did those things, it would cause serious consequences.
School Success Follows
I made significant progress with my grades and wanted to be a model student. When needed, I volunteered to take on tasks that were heavy, tiring, or messy. With beads of sweat dripping from my face, I reminded myself of what I had learned in Falun Dafa–that enduring hardship is a good thing. When others asked me for something, I was willing to give it away. If I was treated unfairly, I kept it to myself and simply did the best I could.
Many classmates now became willing to associate with me. I started to make good friends!
Two students used to constantly gang up on me to give me a hard time. I never argued with them and still treated them as friends. One later apologized to me. I replied, “That's alright, I didn't blame you to begin with.” She wondered, “Why didn't you blame the two of us for treating you like that?” I said, “I am now practicing Falun Dafa and do things by following Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance. That's why.” We both laughed.
After seeing such changes in me, my class adviser pulled me aside and asked, “Why are you suddenly are acting like that? You've changed into another person!” I answered, “My mom started practicing Falun Dafa. She appears to have changed herself completely. Now, I follow her in practicing Falun Dafa, and I've changed, too.” She then asked, “My mom is also learning the same practice. What kind of practice is it?” I told her that it is a practice that teaches people to be kind.
Holding Firmly to My Faith
During the summer when I graduated from elementary school, fabricated reports attacking Falun Dafa were broadcast in the media around the clock. After that, many Chinese people were misled and believed the propaganda.
On Chinese New Year's Eve in 2001, Jiang Zemin and his followers staged a self-immolation hoax on Tiananmen Square to turn public opinion against Falun Dafa. When I learned about the news, the first thought in my mind was, “This is made up!”
Falun Dafa has changed me from a selfish boy loathed by everyone into one who puts others' interests first. In addition to my mother, my uncles, aunts, and grandparents, with whom I practiced the Falun Dafa exercises and read the books, are the kindest people I have ever met. I knew full well what Falun Dafa is and what type of people Dafa practitioners are.
When I entered junior high school, the textbooks contained passages that slandered Falun Dafa. They also incorporated this misinformation into our examinations. I knew that I would rather lose points on the tests than answer such questions.
In the politics textbook in senior high, Falun Dafa was again slandered. When the teacher read the textbook, a student in front of me said, “I have a neighbor who practices Falun Dafa, a really good fellow. It's nothing like what the textbook says.”
The teacher was not sure how to respond, and instead asked, “Those who think Falun Dafa is good, raise your hand.” I immediately raised my hand. Some other students also raised their hands. The teacher had to acknowledge, “Quite a few students think Falun Dafa is good.”
Excelling as a Model Art Student
I was later assigned the role of assistant to the art teachers. I always arrived early to open the classroom doors. Throughout the year, I assisted the teacher to collect school work, post drawings, make purchases, and schedule the still life models. After class, I helped clean up. Every day, I was the last to leave the classroom.
On one occasion, works from our class were to be displayed in the school's exhibition hall. All the paintings had to be framed. At the same time, an important exam was approaching. My classmates were busy preparing for the exam, so no one was available to help with the framing.
I took care of all the framing work. On the day of the exhibition, our art teacher saw that everything was framed and was surprised that I did it all alone. She asked, “You framed all the paintings by yourself?”
When classmates needed help, I always offered assistance. There was a time when several asked for favors at the same time. Still, I managed to help each of them. The art teacher smiled and commented, “My class assistant is quite outstanding!”
I was accepted into an art institute after graduating from high school. Because of my good scores during the enrollment exams, I was made a member of the class committee. Just as I did in senior high school, I did things for the benefit of our class, which was quite rare in the entire institute.
Classes would start at eight o'clock. I used to arrive a little past six and stayed there till five o'clock in the afternoon. To do a good job, I often studied until 10 p.m., when the building was locked up. Sometimes, I was the only one in the building. The hallways were completely dark by the time I left. My roommates were concerned and asked, “Aren't you afraid when the whole building is empty?” I told them, “No, I'm not. I'm full of righteous energy.”
When I was small, I was scared of darkness and often got sick. After taking up cultivation practice in Falun Dafa, I was no longer scared of the dark and could walk a long way at night. I also became physically strong and saved on medical expenses for my family.
The teachers at college were impressed with my grades and overall performance. The dean of the institute even nominated me as the top art student. Some of my artworks were selected for competitions, with some of the award-winning ones being compiled into art textbooks. Our institute also collected some of my works.
By graduation, I ranked number one in my class. For winning provincial awards and other competitions, I was recommended by the institute as a candidate for the top national scholarship. I was also the only winner in our grade.
Some leaders and teachers of the institute were aware that I practiced Falun Dafa. When awarding me the top national scholarship, they must have acknowledged that it was Falun Dafa that brought me these outstanding achievements.
The teachers also told me that I was qualified to apply for another scholarship. However, an instructor in charge of another class asked me to yield the opportunity to a student in his class. “Sure,” I said without hesitation. The faculty members were quite touched.
It was my cultivation in Falun Dafa that made me take things lightly when giving up personal interests!
I am now enrolled in graduate school. Such changes in my growing up were quite dramatic, and they were all brought to me by Falun Dafa and its principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance.