(Minghui.org) I was illegally sentenced to forced labor in 2008 for practicing Falun Gong. When wondering why I was sentenced, I realized that I had done very little Fa study and did not know how to look inside for my own shortcomings.

While in the labor camp, the days felt like years. But not being able to study the Fa became the most unbearable pain in my heart. I regretted that I had not memorized Zhuan Falun.

After I was released, I was determined to memorize Zhuan Falun. Since then, I have memorized the book many times, which underscores that Fa-study is of great importance for a practitioner's personal cultivation.

Achieving Merit Unconsciously

I had not made a breakthrough in my cultivation, even though my heart longed for doing better on my path. I could not pass xinxing tests when I had conflicts with practitioners. Their faces often popped up in my mind.

Therefore, I thought about how wonderful it was when I first started to cultivate. Master Li Hongzhi said, “... are you “cultivating with the heart you once had”?” (“Fa Teaching at the 2013 Greater New York Fa Conference”).

While meditating I asked myself, “Why can't I cultivate with the heart I once had?” This thought opened a floodgate in my mind, and I remembered what I had done as a practitioner – they were all things a practitioner was supposed to do. That showed me that I achieved merit unconsciously.

Improving My Cultivation Environment

In the labor camp, I could not be transformed despite the brutal persecution. After I was released, I visited police departments without fearing arrest to clarify the truth about the persecution.

I remembered all that was given to me by Master Li. My wisdom was opened, and I could clarify the truth well. Yet, it occurred to me that I took credit for all that I did, instead of realizing that it was due to the glory of Falun Dafa.

After this thought, a shiver went down my spine. I said to myself, “Master, I was wrong. I must start fresh and treat myself as if I have just started cultivating.”

All the bad substances in my body, such as attachments to achievement, hard work, conflicts and worrying about others' opinions about me, were no longer important. I developed a new understanding of “Cultivate with the heart you once had.”

Cultivation of Speech and Validating Self

When a practitioner badmouthed another practitioner, I also joined in. I immediately regretted it and realized I failed to cultivate my speech.

I could not fall asleep that night, so I asked myself what made me do that. A phrase entered my mind, “Validating self.” Master's hint was so true!

Practitioners have to let go of selfishness and the attachment to self. I felt it was relatively easy to identify selfishness, however it was very hard to identify the attachment to self. I had ignored the issue of validating self. How would this deep-rooted attachment be removed if it could not be detected?

Validating myself has been rooted within me. I blamed other practitioners and family members for things they had done to show that I was right – which is related to validating oneself. My show-off mentality was also part of validating myself.

Lack of Understanding the Truth about Falun Gong

It was difficult to persuade people to quit the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and its youth organizations in the county where I reside. Many villagers had never received truth-clarification materials.

So I decided to go from door-to-door to distribute Falun Gong brochures in every village. I have distributed the materials in six townships over the past six years.

Someone in one village called the police at the end of 2016 about my distributing Falun Gong information. Many villagers surrounded the police van. I said to the crowd, “Don't worry. Wait for me, I will come back. Remember 'Falun Dafa is good! Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance is good!'”

I was taken to the police department, where I spent the entire afternoon talking about Falun Gong to the two junior police officers watching me. They both quit the CCP.

Standing Tall in the Detention Center

I was transferred to a detention center where I refused to wear the uniform and persisted in doing the exercises. The guards had refused to let me have any water, but an inmate handed me water through the bars.

When the guards also refused to let me have any food, I stopped every one that passed my cell and said, “Who gave the order not to let me have any food or water? Write it down and sign your name. I will use it as evidence to bring charges against all of you.” Although I was never told who gave the order, I was given something to eat.

A guard accosted me for not wearing the uniform and not paying for the food. I told him, “Don't you know? A Buddha school cultivator like me cannot wear such a uniform. It is humiliating to the Buddha Fa. The person who forces me to wear it will increase his or her karma.” From then on, I was excused from wearing the uniform and was allowed to do the exercises.

When I was outside in the yard, I saw a young inmate shivering from the cold. I returned to my cell, took off my cotton vest, and asked the guard to give it to the young man. The guard refused. I then found an unclaimed cotton padded coat which the guard allowed me to take to the young man. The inmate was grateful and quit the Chinese Communist Party after I talked to him about Falun Gong and told him that it is not wise to be a member of the Party.

I was released in 15 days. Instead of going home, I went back to the same township to further clarify the truth.

Seeking Personal Benefits from Falun Gong Creates Problems

For years, I have been clarifying the facts to police officers in the police departments and stations face-to-face and by mailing truth-clarification letters.

When some Falun Gong practitioners were persecuted for filing criminal charges against Jiang Zemin, the former head of the communist regime, I called the section chief of the national security division.

The section chief and several police officers then came to my home. The chief picked up Zhuan Falun and told me that he wanted to take it home and read Lun Yu. Since he had confiscated this book when he ransacked other practitioners' homes, I told him that he could not take my book.

When leaving I said, “If you visit me as a guest, I will offer you good food. But, if you come because I practice Falun Gong, please never come again.”

When he visited another time, he suggested that I no longer go out to distribute Falun Gong materials.

“I don't blame you for not knowing,” I said. “The more I go out an distribute information, the more Falun Gong's power will strengthen me, the faster I will walk, and the lighter my body will feel.

“The more I stay at home in comfort, the heavier my body becomes.”