(Minghui.org) I had been struggling to maintain an ordinary person's life in the past couple years. Because of this, the old forces took advantage of the weaknesses in my cultivation and put me through many tribulations involving both ordinary people and fellow practitioners. However, Master has been caring for me, providing me with hints, and encouraging me. Master wrote:
“Steeling the mind, lift up the leaden legs.”
(“Climbing Mount Tai” from Hong Yin)
I was arrested in the winter. In detention, I kept sending righteous thoughts while searching within for loopholes. A woman in a down jacket followed me when I went to use the restroom. Looking at each other, we both felt as though we were long-lost acquaintances. We started chatting right away and calling each other “Sister.” She told me her name and about her hometown. I then talked about Falun Dafa and quitting the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). She readily agreed to quit.
At the time, a dozen police officers were right outside, guarding the area. Yet, I did not feel a shred of fear and my mind was totally focused on saving her. Later, I learned she was the deputy captain of the city's domestic security team. I was happy for her and for what I did.
Master's taught us:
“Compassion is the Divine's eternal state”
(“Why Do You Reject It?” from Hong Yin III)
This teaching was etched in my heart. I have been treating the police and government officials without a bit of resentment, even though they had gotten me fired from my job, forced me to undergo brainwashing, and even detained and interrogated me. I am concerned that if their consciences are not awakened and they continue to participate in the persecution, their lives will be sacrificed for the CCP and former Party leader Jiang Zemin.
In the detention center, I found myself in a cell with a wide bed on which all 14 inmates had to sleep. I looked at their faces and it seemed as if they all were once my relatives. They smiled and clapped their hands to welcome me once they heard I was a Falun Dafa practitioner. The head inmate held my hands with tears in her eyes and told me I looked just like her mother. Maybe I had predestined relationships with them in my past lives.
I said to myself, “No matter where I am, it is always a place for me to save sentient beings and fulfill my mission.”
I took advantage of the evening break when they watched TV to speak to them one-on-one about Dafa and quitting the CCP. I told them that Falun Dafa was a Buddha school cultivation that taught people to conduct themselves according to Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance and that the five exercises improved both mental and physical health. I also told them about the relation between people's illnesses and their behavior.
A majority of them listened to me and some agreed to quit the CCP and its affiliated organizations.
A drug-addicted inmate nicknamed Shuang Shuang was special to me. When I first met her, her hair covered half of her pale face, her eyes were half shut, and she looked dazed all day long. She was hot-tempered and refused to make the cloth flowers we were ordered to produce. Everyone else had to do extra work to meet the group's daily quota, and other inmates would often quarrel with her out of resentment. She would also threaten to kill other inmates. As a result, she had to be transferred to different cells periodically. The guards gave her medication every day to keep her mental state in check.
“I used to be a wealthy businesswoman,” she told me. “But I spent several million on drugs. My husband divorced me. Then I started dealing drugs to make a living. My mom sent me here out of desperation.”
The medication the prison gave her made her depressed and sluggish. I talked to her multiple times about Falun Dafa and told her to be considerate of her parents and to be a good person. I also advised her to recite “Falun Dafa is good and Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance is good,” which would be beneficial to her health. She agreed to quit the CCP organizations.
One day, she looked exhilarated and said to me, “I have been reciting these words all the time. It truly makes a difference. Now I feel great!”
I told her she was very wise to do that and that she had good enlightenment quality. I encouraged her to keep it up. In the next couple days, she cut down on her medication and started wearing her hair in a ponytail. She looked full of vitality and beautiful. Everyone was happy to see her dramatic transformation; she even started to participate in the daily work routine.
Seven days after I met her, she stopped taking medications once and for all.
There was an easygoing inmate named Xiao Qian, who used to be a kindergarten principal with a graduate degree and a good family. I talked to her about Falun Dafa and quitting the CCP. She was very receptive and believed in Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance as the universal principle.
When she learned about the persecution, the staged self-immolation, and the organ harvesting, she expressed her indignation.
“Those people are bound to receive retribution for their evil deeds,” she said.
One night she held my hands and seemed worried.
“I know practitioners are kind people. You should not be here. This is hell. Do you know that you could be released if you just said, 'I give up practicing Falun Dafa?' If not, you could be sentenced to prison,” she said.
“Under no circumstances would practitioners betray Master Li Hongzhi and our practice,” I replied. “Not even in words. Don't worry about me. I will get out of here soon.
“I am here to tell everyone about Falun Dafa and quitting the CCP so you will be blessed. Enduring hardships is not necessarily a bad thing. Once all of you learn 'Falun Dafa is good' I will leave, because I came here just for you.”
She nodded in tears, saying, “Thank you! Thank you!”
I learned that she regretted her past wrongdoings. “I have been in detention for three months,” she said. “The judge said I could face one to two years in prison. I don't know yet when the sentencing will be issued.”
“Heaven looks at your heart,” I told her. “Now you are remorseful. You will be forgiven and cared for by Heaven.”
“I will remember what you said. I have learned my lesson and will conduct myself according to Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance in the future,” she said.
Three days later she was handed her verdict and sentencing. She got one year of probation and could go home the next day. She cried in surprise and happiness.
I was later transferred to a long-term detention center.
A guard told me, “The minimum stay here is 37 days.”
I thought to myself, “I will stay for only seven days and will leave once I have saved those I need to save.”
I was not able to sleep most nights, and my thoughts were not very clear. I tried to recite the Fa and send righteous thoughts. I immediately regretted the fact that I did not memorize very much Fa before. I also looked inside to search for loopholes in my cultivation that were being taken advantage of by the old forces.
I realized that, in the past year or so, I had slacked off in my cultivation and let my guard down when it came to certain attachments. I found that my main issues were the attachments to accomplishments, showing off, seeking comfort, and competitiveness. On top of that, I didn't pay proper attention to security. I decided to start paying attention to these issues from that very moment.
I firmly believed that Master was right next to me.
I told myself, “I will put myself completely in Master's care. Master will arrange everything for me.”
One night I grabbed the bars on the cell door, looked out the windows in the hallway, and said to Master in my heart, “Master, I have talked to people here about Falun Dafa. There are so many more people outside waiting for me to save them. Please help me get out of here. On the seventh day, if I can leave, would you please open this door?”
Just then, a beam of blue light shone through my window and opened up like a double door. Through the open window, I saw a wide-open path leading into the distance. The blue light was so bright that it lit up the whole night sky. I could feel a strong energy field around me, as if I existed in another dimension, basking in an atmosphere of tranquility and calmness. I put my palms together in heshi and thanked Master, tears rolling down my cheeks.
On the seventh day, I was released. Before I left, I did not forget to urge all the inmates to keep reciting, “Falun Dafa is good. Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance is good.”
The day after I was released, I had a vivid dream. A middle-aged woman led me to a room where several other women were. It seemed no one was allowed to leave the room. Their expressions were hard to understand.
I said to myself, “It's terrible that I am trapped here right after I escaped the detention center.”
When nobody was watching, I managed to jump through a window into a ravine outside. Then I struggled to climb up a hill to reach the top. After I woke up, I kept telling myself that I must always act with righteous thoughts and not be taken advantage of by the evil forces again.
During the early days after my release, many practitioners came to share their experiences and understandings with me. Not only did that eat up a lot of my time to study the Fa well, but they also left me confused. Some believed that all imprisoned practitioners had major flaws and had to start from scratch in their cultivation. Some even suspected that practitioners' arrests and detention were a result of things they had done to damage the Fa. It was like agreeing with the old forces that the persecution was justified and well-deserved.
In the past, I was grateful and indebted to fellow practitioners for their help and encouragement when I was in detention. Now I started to harbor a lot of resentment. Unbeknownst to anyone, a wide gap among us practitioners developed little by little. It was truly like what I experienced in my dream. I felt as though a large, formless net had covered all of us and the tentacles of the old forces were controlling us.
Master taught us,
“When you encounter ordeals during your cultivation, you have got to cultivate yourself and look at yourself--that doesn't mean acknowledging the ordeals arranged by the old forces and trying to do well amidst the ordeals they've arranged, that's not the case. We negate even the very emergence of the old forces and everything that they've arranged; we don't even acknowledge their existence. We're fundamentally negating all of their things, and all of, and only, the things you do while negating and getting rid of them is mighty-virtue. It's not that you're cultivating amidst the ordeals they created. Rather, you are to walk your own path well while not acknowledging them, not even acknowledging the elimination of their ordeals' manifestations. (Applause) So looking at it from this angle, what we need to do is completely negate the old forces. Dafa disciples and I don't even acknowledge the manifestations of their last-ditch efforts.” (“Teaching the Fa at the 2004 Chicago Conference” from Teaching the Fa at the Conference IV)
Master's words awakened me. I enlightened to the fact that I should not allow the old forces to use fellow practitioners to create new tribulations for me; also, I must completely deny the tests among practitioners that were arranged by the old forces. I stopped meeting with and talking to them. Instead, I continued to do the three things every day. Along with studying the Fa and looking inward for improvement, I was able to get rid of many attachments and transformed my resentment into gratitude toward my fellow practitioners. Now I can cooperate with them to the best of my ability whenever my assistance is needed.
Eventually, we all came to the same understanding: we ought to form a unified whole in order to seize the day and save more sentient beings rather than argue about fellow practitioners' good or bad cultivation states. We should focus on doing the three things well. Even though there are loopholes in our cultivation, we should rectify them by doing the three things, without accepting or acknowledging the old forces' arrangements.
Fellow practitioners, please kindly point out anything in my understanding that falls short of the Fa.