A New Practitioner's Cultivation Journey
(Minghui.org) Greeting Master! Greetings fellow practitioners!
I'm a Falun Dafa practitioner from Taoyuan City in Taiwan. I began practicing Falun Dafa (also called Falun Gong) after attending a promotional event for the Shen Yun Symphony Orchestra in September 2016 and have been cultivating for two years now.
Looking back at my life before obtaining the Fa, many things were difficult for me to handle. My emotions – whether I was happy or sad – were in the hands of my friends and family.
In particular, my husband and one of my sons gave me the most headaches. For example, my husband would get drunk and cause trouble in our neighborhood while I was out of town on business. My son had poor academic performance and almost didn't graduate from high school.
I was unable to sleep well and was always exhausted. I tried many different folk remedies, but none of them really helped.
After I began to practice Falun Dafa, the quality of my sleep significantly improved. Most importantly, Falun Dafa helps me to look at things from a different perspective. I became much more energetic and my temper improved. People around me all saw my changes. My eldest daughter-in-law even asked her hot-tempered mother to learn Falun Dafa from me.
Introducing the Fa to My Friends
Not long after I began to practice Dafa, I invited eight friends of mine to attend the nine-day class in which we played the videos of Master Li Hongzhi's (the founder of Falun Dafa) lectures.
These friends have known me for years. The changes in me after I picked up the practice were the most telling examples of how great the Fa is.
I had been working hard most of my career, seeking accomplishment and a better life. After my sons grew up and I turned 50, I suddenly lost my motivation to make lots of money. I felt that life was so empty and I began searching for peace to fill the emptiness in my heart. I looked into many cultivation practices, but none of them answered my questions about life.
When I read the Falun Gong books, I knew that this was the real teaching. I was really moved when I read Master's words in Falun Gong that a cultivator must “bear hardships upon hardships, and endure almost unendurable things.” (7th Translation Edition, 2016)
Many problems that were difficult to understand suddenly became clear to me. In the past, I tried very hard to live well, but no matter how hard I tried, I just couldn't achieve what I wanted. On the other hand, some people didn’t seem to be putting in much effort, and yet they lived a good life and their marriages were sound.
After studying the Fa, I understood about fate and karmic relationships between people. Falun Dafa's teachings helped me take lightly many of the things that had bothered me in the past, and my heart was no longer moved along with the ups and downs around me.
Many other cultivation schools talk about how to let go of worldly pursuits. But I felt that none of them really explained things clearly or provided specific guidance. The texts of some cultivation schools are also very hard to understand.
“Regardless of how much money you have, how high your position ranks, or what kind of private enterprise or company you run, it makes no difference, as you should trade fairly and maintain a righteous mind.” (Lecture Four, Zhuan Falun)
As I understand it, anybody can cultivate. What really matters is how we look at loss and gain, whether we are attached to fame and power, or are easily affected by our emotions. After all, everything comes down to our hearts.
In addition to the spiritual teachings, Falun Dafa also has five meditative exercises that cultivate our bodies.
I told my friends about all the benefits of practicing Falun Dafa and that it's a free practice, and added that nobody would force them to stay if they didn't want to learn.
Although some of my friends didn't finish the class and some said that it was difficult for them to persist, I feel I've gained the most in attending the nine-day class with them.
Letting Go of Fear and Validating the Fa in Hong Kong
I was often very moved when I heard practitioners sharing their experiences of participating in the large-scale Dafa parades in Hong Kong. I felt the urge to contribute to the effort to clarify the facts at this time when Dafa is under persecution and attack by the communist regime. It's a huge loss that people lose their opportunity to practice Falun Dafa because of the persecution.
But the thought of walking two or three hours in a parade really made me nervous, as I have had a delicate digestion since childhood. Even if I don’t eat, I often have diarrhea. I was afraid that this would happen to me during the parade.
On the other hand, I knew that Dafa is really great, and I need to step out and clarify the facts. Eight months after I obtained the Fa, after overcoming my fear and human thinking, I participated in a parade in Hong Kong.
The streets were full of people and I was glad that they could learn the facts about Dafa from us. From then on, I went to every parade in Hong Kong.
Some thugs hired by the communist regime often used loudspeakers to interfere with our activities. The evilness of the Communist Party made me want to participate in these events even more. Although I don’t know how to clarify the facts to people face-to-face, I can hold banners, send forth righteous thoughts, or pass out newspapers.
Although I still have a full-time job, I'm not working as many extra hours to make as much money as I did before. It's fine as long as I have enough money to meet my needs. To my surprise, after I let go of my attachment to fame and personal interest, my performance at work wasn't affected at all. Instead, I have easily reached my sales quotas without much effort.
I feel that Master arranged all of this for me and gave me this extensive free time to go to Hong Kong. My stays there have increased from an initial 10 days to 15 days and even a month. This year, I have already spent two one-month periods in Hong Kong.
The tourist attractions in Hong Kong are in great need of practitioners to send forth righteous thoughts, hold banners and display boards, as well as clarify the truth and help people quit the Chinese Communist Party and its affiliated youth organizations.
Although I don’t yet know how to clarify the truth to Chinese tourists face-to-face, some of them do look at the display boards I'm holding. After that, other practitioners will talk to them and persuade them to quit the Party. We work as one body to save sentient beings. I was also happy to see Chinese tourists salute us from their tour bus after they have understood the facts about Falun Dafa and the persecution in China.
Passing Out Newspapers in Hong Kong
Passing out Falun Dafa newspaper in Hong Kong is a very effective way to clarify the facts to people.
The first time I passed out newspapers, I was assigned to an intersection. There were two other practitioners near me on both sides of the street, also passing out the paper. At first, I was upset about the assignment and felt that it wasn't necessary for me to be there. I wanted to go to a different place to distribute newspapers.
But then I realized I should go with the flow and that the people who have a predestined relationship with me will take the newspapers from me. It doesn't really matter whether I have a “good spot” or not.
After changing my thoughts, many people began to take newspapers from me. I soon finished passing out all the newspapers I had and was able to help other practitioners with theirs.
Usually when people see the Minghui Weekly, they know that it is Falun Dafa's newspaper. I usually let them know what I'm handing out and they will only take it if they want to read it; that way, fewer newspapers will be thrown away.
Sometimes I become attached to the number of newspapers I handed out. I then remind myself to eliminate such attachments, as everything is under Master's arrangement.
I sometimes become impatient and worried if people don't take a newspaper from me. Then I realized that passing out newspapers is like meditation – we need to keep a calm mind and not be moved by anything.
A coordinator once said that practitioners all like to go to areas where it is easy to pass out newspapers, but avoid those places where people aren't familiar with us. My understanding is that we shouldn't avoid any place just because it's difficult to clarify the truth there, or sentient beings in those areas may not have the chance to hear the facts. Sometimes it just takes time for people to get to know us.
We meet all kinds of people while passing out the newspaper. Some people are very rude and curse us, some are friendly, some give us a thumbs-up, and some salute us.
In addition to all the xinxing tests involved with clarifying the truth in Hong Kong, standing or walking long hours is also a physical challenge for me. But as time passed, I began to really enjoy passing out newspapers and was no longer afraid of walking.
But as other areas also need people, whether it's passing out newspapers or going to tourist sites, I keep the big picture in mind and cooperate with the coordinator's arrangement, without being attached to only doing things I like to do.
A Fellow Practitioner's Righteous Support
I always wished to see Master after I began practicing Falun Dafa, so I signed up for the New York Fa Conference last year. On the day of the grand parade, I was in the exercise demonstration group. Because I hadn't let go of the fear of having diarrhea, I skipped breakfast that morning.
It was cold that day. By the time the parade was about to start, I still didn't feel right. So I told the group leader that I was afraid I wasn't able to participate in the parade. I explained that because I'd skipped breakfast, I might not have enough energy to finish the parade, but I might also have diarrhea if I had breakfast.
The group leader replied, “It is not a problem whether you eat or not. The fact is that you don’t have any problem.”
So I gave up the idea of running away from the parade. I felt a little dizzy at first, but as soon as the Tian Guo Marching Band began to perform, I was immediately energized and finished the parade in good shape.
After so many years of searching, I finally found Dafa that answered all my questions. Any discomfort or tribulation in my life is because of my attachments. With Dafa's guidance, I am no longer lost. When someone misunderstood me in the past, I would definitely reason with them. Now I don’t have to explain myself, unless it is really necessary.
I feel that daily Fa-study is like having meals. The Fa fills me with positive energy and gives me the strength to do well in saving sentient beings.
Fa-study is very important, but I can’t guarantee it every day at home in Taiwan. My granddaughter needs a lot of attention. Although I often make up my mind to persist in Fa study, I also have a hard time sticking to my resolution. So the group cultivation environment in Hong Kong is very important to me.
At my exercise site, fellow practitioners start the sitting meditation right after sending forth righteous thoughts at 6 a.m. It allows me, a new practitioner, to quickly catch up. I can now do the double lotus with everyone for 75 minutes. Although it is really painful, I can endure it.
This time in Hong Kong, I met a practitioner who studied the Fa for four hours with his legs crossed in the full lotus position. I was really inspired. I began to sit in the lotus position during my Fa study, and I sat for nearly four hours as well.
The cultivation environment in Hong Kong helps me do the three things well and I feel more grounded. Thank you, Master and fellow practitioners for this arrangement.
(Presented at the 2018 Taiwan Experience Sharing Conference)