A Short Summary of My Cultivation Path
(Minghui.org) Greetings, Master! Greetings, fellow practitioners!
I am from Romania. I came to the English Epoch Times to work as a software developer.
I gained Dafa in 2006 in Romania. After reading Zhuan Falun, I understood that my lifelong search had ended and that I had found what I was looking for since a very young age. I was happy that the book would answer for me the meaning of life and how one should govern his or her life. It would finally allow me to get out of the endless pain of living in ordinary human society. I have not put the book down since then, and it has never stopped enlightening me and elevating my cultivation.
Before starting cultivation, I tried to fix and control everyone and everything that had any connection with me in an attempt to keep my environment clean. This proved to be one of my biggest attachments at the beginning of my cultivation, until I understood that I cannot control the lives of others and that Dafa would clean my environment on its own.
“I would say that this is your wishful thinking. You are unable to interfere with the lives of others, and neither can you control others’ fates, including those of your wife, sons, daughters, parents, or brothers.” (Zhuan Falun)
After I understood the old forces' arrangements as Master explained to us in the lectures, I have been involved in every project I can and tried my best to save more and more people. In the earlier years, clarifying the truth was arduous, hard work and full of interference. The only way I could move anything forward was through sending intensive righteous thoughts.
One time, I was in Prague to help the practitioners there to distribute Shen Yun flyers to residential areas. Another practitioner and I went to a nearby city next to Prague. As we approached the city, a storm started to form and go the same direction we did. We saw that the storm would try to interfere our distributing the flyers, so we started to send righteous thoughts.
I politely asked the rain to move to Prague, as we had finished distributing materials in Prague. As if it absolutely had to rain in that exact moment, I saw the rain start to move. But then some bad elements inside the rain started to come back up, and the storm returned. I sent righteous thoughts toward those bad elements, and we saw the storm move away to Prague.
We successfully distributed the flyers and returned to Prague. The practitioners there were all disappointed that it rained the whole time in Prague as we were distributing the flyers and were convinced that it would rain in that nearby city too. We told them it didn't rain because we sent the rain to them in Prague.
Another time, some practitioners told me that when I sent righteous thoughts, they saw me as an immense warrior with chest armor and holding two big ancient swords, smashing all evil on the battlefield.
Sending righteous thoughts has been one of my best and most powerful tools, and it has helped me a lot. In that time, Master evolved my wisdom and capacity to endure at every level of my cultivation, and he taught me how righteous thoughts work and how effective they are on the spot. When sending righteous thoughts, I feel just like how Master described in his poem:
“Swift like lightning, soaring to cosmic heightsMighty like a thunderbolt, reaching beyond heavensSweeping across the cosmos, no place untouchedEliminating altogether all that’s decayed and deviant”(“Righteous Thoughts,” Hong Yin IV)
Master also let me see how he takes my cultivated part away. One time, I felt that my righteous thoughts were very strong, my head and understandings were very clear, and my general cultivation level was quite high. As soon I felt that, the next second I felt that part leave me. What was left was weak. I had little power when sending righteous thoughts and understood that I had to start all over again.
Master said in “Fa Teaching Given at the 2014 San Francisco Fa Conference,”
“Of course, having said that, your human side has nevertheless also reached a place where its abilities at the surface are weak. (Master laughs) As things progress to the most surface part of human beings, your power appears to be weaker than before. But if you have strong righteous thoughts, you can still summon the same amount of power, and that is why all the more so you need to place importance on sending righteous thoughts.”
All the suffering I had endured in my life and in my cultivation have not been in vain. For every bit of suffering, I would receive ten times the reward and be positioned on the next level. Master let me know and see how all these arrangements work. Looking back, my past and my hardships seem to be a million years away and feel like a dream.
Because my childhood was very different from those of others and because of the hardships I had to endure since a young age, I couldn't relate to people or stand their lack of endurance or wisdom. A part of me didn't have any understanding, consideration, or compassion for them.
I later discovered that these were two sides of the same coin. One part was very compassionate and wanted to save all people and the world, and the other part was cruel; it had no feelings and did not care. In my cultivation, I had to replace the cruel part with compassion and think more for other people's well-being and those around me.
In one instance, I was annoyed by the lack of energy, willpower, and endurance of one local practitioner, and I started to be disrespectful toward him, thinking how he was able to live that way.
Later that night, I had a dream about this practitioner. He was sitting on a couch, but instead of his body being bent forward, it was bent backward. His knees were bent backward; his arms, back, and whole body were handicapped. He had to live every day in that condition, and the fact that he is alive in the human dimension is amazing. The fact that he is also a practitioner is simply a miracle. I learned not to judge others because everyone has complex circumstances and no one can tell from the surface what one is all about. I also felt ashamed at myself for thinking in such a way.
I learned that all the bad things I thought of others were, in fact, coming back to me ten-fold. Once I replaced the bad thoughts with compassion toward others, a big, heavy stone was lifted off my back, and I became lighter and more peaceful.
Because I never stayed in the same place very long for my whole life—it felt just like staying at hotel after hotel—I developed a feeling of not knowing where my roots are, who I am, what I am, or what I am or am not able to do. I distrusted myself. These feelings gradually went away with more Fa-study and understanding how the old forces work.
One time I had a dream. A being came to me. It dressed in black, was tall, and had an evil-looking face. I understood that it represented the old forces. The being had a bag with her that looked like a doctor’s bag from the old times. She opened the bag and started to take out different torture instruments. She tried to apply and test each one on me, measuring me from head to toe, trying to figure out which instrument would break me. After testing all of the instruments, she became upset and nervous that none of her instruments worked on me. Finally, she put all the instruments back into the bag, gave me an evil look, and left.
I understood that we practitioners are indeed made of a different type of matter than the old cosmos. The beings in the old cosmos can't reach us as long as we are in the Fa. Because we are disciples of the Fa-rectification period, we signed a contract with Master to come here to help Him rectify this world, and we are beings transcending the old cosmos, the material we are made of is different–it is better and purer. We are indeed able to have an impact in Master's Fa-rectification. It was time for me to stop harming myself in such a way and start cherishing more of what I am and how much Master had to go through for me so that I can be here today.
I understood that because we are this type of being, we cannot act like monks from the past, even in our private lives. Our mentality has to be open, alert and communicative at all times. We will have to preside over so many beings in the future, and we cannot get there thinking about escaping to our caves and away from our troubles.
Coming to New York
After a 20-hour trip from Europe, I arrived at the New York media headquarters tired and thirsty. I thought I was so thirsty that I could drink water from even a shoe. I saw a water dispenser but couldn't find any glasses or cups. A Chinese boy saw me and went back and forth to the kitchen, desperately looking for a cup, but he found nothing. He reappeared and stretched out his arm to give me a very thin plastic plate that bent at the touch. “Take this,” he told me. I took the plate but couldn't believe he would expect me to be able to drink from it.
I thought to myself, “Maybe that thought with the shoe was not quite right.” Immediately, a smiling Chinese lady appeared. Seeing a Caucasian trying to drink water from a plastic plate, she gave me a cup and said, “You can drink out of this.”
My days in the company were very good, and I immediately felt that this environment was very precious. I felt I had finally returned home from a long, hard stay far away.
During this time, I noticed some of my karma and attachments reappear. Master let me see how it got dissolved and his compassion for me during this process.
I don't feel the pressure from Europe anymore, and I found this environment more free and open. I could let go of more of my yang side and didn’t feel I had to be on guard and ready to fight every day. This allowed me to be more soft and gentle. I think this was a step toward my original nature.
I was also able to understand more the concept of wuwei (non-action). I am a person who doesn't go with the tide. I had to be in control of my actions and destination, and I had to know at every moment what I was doing, where I was going, and why. Of course, Master emphasized the need to have a strong main consciousness.
But wuwei is not about such small things. It is about bigger things–cosmic changes, cycles, and arrangements that automatically influence one’s life and are out of our control. At that time, when one insists on doing things his own way and not according to the cosmic flow, then of course the results would be bad, and one gets stuck or even harmed. Once I understood this, I felt more relieved and less stressed compared to having to manage and control every single thing in my life.
My patience and compassion have also improved along with my general cultivation.
I was once on a bus when I noticed the driver waiting for a woman to cross the street to allow her to board. She was blocked by traffic, and the green light never seemed to come. I became impatient, thinking how the bus driver was waiting so long for this woman even though he had a timetable to follow. To me, the wait felt like hours. I later realized that my patience and compassion at the time was not even at the level of that bus driver.
At another time, I was on the subway going home from work. Several kids entered the train and started to beat their drums and sing. They made so much noise that it was hard to hear anything else. They were trying to make a penny and selling their entertainment. But in my mind, I thought about how the city could allow these people to come onto the subway and make so much noise. If I were the police, I would have taken them out immediately.
Instead, after they finished singing, all the people started to applaud. They gave the kids trust in themselves for doing a good job. I was amazed by the kids' smiles. My compassion and forbearance were at such a low level that day. I no longer wonder now why some of these reactions come back to me from other people.
When I look back, I now understand how my cultivation path was arranged and the reasons behind it. I feel that even if I run in a circle with my attachments, with them being the same at every level, the circle turns upward and does not stay at the same level.
I see my cultivation path as the seed of a lotus flower, which at the beginning of life gets to be dumped onto the bottom of the pond. Slowly but surely, it grows through the muddy water and rises to clearer water until it reaches the sun and gets to be a beautiful lotus flower on a beautiful magical lake.
Please correct any incorrect understandings.
Thank you, Master! Thank you, fellow practitioners!
(Presented at the 2018 New York English Experience Sharing Conference)