Walking Steadfastly on My Cultivation Path
Greetings, Master!Greetings, fellow practitioners!
I would like to take the opportunity at this conference to reflect on my cultivation path and share my experience with Master and fellow practitioners.
Going to China to Defend Master and Dafa
The CCP started its persecution of Falun Gong, also called Falun Dafa, on July 20, 1999. I read on the Minghui website that the persecution was worsening in China, while more and more practitioners were clarifying the truth about Falun Gong. I thought that since we cultivate according to Dafa, practitioners inside and outside China should be one body. I felt I should go to Beijing and speak out for Master and Dafa.
My visa to enter China was rejected at the Chinese consulate in Sydney before I flew to Hong Kong, because the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) shares its central dissidents’ database globally. I thought to myself, “Well, I’ve tried my best, and I should go back to Australia.” But there was another voice in my mind: “Cultivation is like a boat sailing against the current–it must forge ahead or it will be driven back.” I knew I was not ready to give up. Eventually, a practitioner found me a way–I hired a private boat and was able to enter China.
Upon arrival, I contacted local practitioners. One told me that Chen Zixiu from Weifang City, Shandong Province, had been persecuted to death by the CCP. That was the first known incident of this kind of crime. I was asked to drive to Weifang to get first-hand documents of Chen Zixiu and upload the information to the Minghui website to expose the crime.
Many challenges faced me: It would be 900 kilometers, I was not familiar with driving on the right side of the road, and GPS was not available at the time.
But Master's Fa resounded in my mind:
“It is a xinxing issue if you do not help stop a murder or arson when you see it. How will you otherwise demonstrate that you are a good person? If you do not help stop a murder or arson, what will you get involved with?” (Lecture Nine, Zhuan Falun)
So I calmly replied that I would go. We set out the next morning and arrived in Weifang late at night. We met Zixiu’s daughter and other local practitioners. They gave me some of her photos and documents about her case. After only a few hours’ sleep, we started our return journey. A practitioner reminded us of the heavy police presence guarding the city gate and suggested to hide the documents somewhere in the car.
I calmed down and saw that many pairs of eyes, from both Gods and demons, were watching me. I thought nowhere would be as safe as carrying the documents myself, so I put the documents in my shirt pockets and prepared to protect them with whatever I could. I recited the Dafa principles of “Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance” a few times before we were on our way.
At the city gate, a policeman pulled me over and started an inspection. I reminded myself constantly to be calm, as Master told us, “Just by staying unaffected you will be able to handle all situations.” (Teaching the Fa at the Conference in the Midwest-U.S.)
With Master’s protection, I went through the gate successfully and returned to Beijing. In a restaurant, I handed the documents safely to a practitioner who was in contact with Minghui, and Zixiu’s case was exposed globally.
Arrested and Detained in Beijing District Six Prison
Some days later, we heard that a reporter from the Washington Post was in Shandong. We decided to find him, have an interview, and expose the crime further. However, I was arrested by plainclothes officers while leaving Beijing and taken to Beijing District Six Prison.
In the cell, I told prisoners what Falun Gong was about, its persecution by the CCP, and how and why I came to Beijing. I said all I wanted was to defend Dafa and Master. I also explained how supportive and protective the international community was toward Falun Gong. My sincerity earned their trust and sympathy, but they worried about my situation.
I remembered that Master said:
“I am rooted in the universe. If anyone can harm you, he or she would be able to harm me. Put simply, that person would be able to harm this universe.” (Lecture One, Zhuan Falun)
I told them not to worry because only what our Master says counts. They did not seem to fully understand what I meant.
When I was interrogated by police in the middle of the night, I introduced Falun Gong to the police too. The smoking interrogator pondered and said, “You entered China without a valid visa, which violates the law, so we can sentence you on a charge of illegal entry.” I was not scared at all and replied, “So many people illegally enter Taiwan, Europe and the U.S., but have you ever heard of anyone illegally entering China? I applied many times officially to visit my family and relatives but was rejected each time. The Chinese government deprived me of my basic right as a tourist. It was the government’s fault. Since the UK ceded Hong Kong back to China in 1997, China has operated under ‘one country two systems’. Since I entered China from Hong Kong, it was traveling inside the same country and has nothing to do with illegal entry.”
The policeman was impressed, did not say another word, and just told me to sign a document. I wrote “Falun Dafa Is Good” before putting down my name. I saw light radiating from the characters I wrote. I wondered if it was because my eyes were tired and sore since it was 3 a.m, so I rubbed my eyes, but the characters were still shining.
“When you go home and write a few words—no matter how your handwriting is—it carries gong!” (Lecture Six, Zhuan Falun)
I realized that it must have been an encouragement from Master. Thank you, Master! Thank you, Dafa!
A week passed quickly. One night before going to bed, I said to Master, “Since everyone here has heard about Dafa, and many in Australia haven’t, I think I need to go home.” The next morning, a police officer told me, “Pack up your stuff, we’ll send you back to Australia.” After packing, I said goodbye to all the prisoners, “I’m going back to Australia. I hope when you are released, you can learn Falun Gong. It’s beneficial to yourselves and society.” One of them replied, “Indeed, it is as you said–what your Master says counts. Your Master is truly great!”
Following Master’s Guidance and Studying the Fa Well
During my over 20 years on the cultivation path, I remember one of Master’s teachings particularly well:
“In order to truly enable you to ascend through cultivation, I have utilized a method, namely, taking what I can give to you and what I can help you with, and compressing all of it into the book of Fa. The only thing left is to see if you want to obtain it.” (Teaching the Fa at the Fa Conference in Australia)
When I study the Fa daily, Master often reveals new levels of meaning to me. I also saw my gong column growing shockingly quickly.
But, at some stage I felt I was stuck and could elevate no further. One day when I was reciting Zhuan Falun to the line of “I’m a practitioner” (Lecture Six, Zhuan Falun) the Chinese character for Gong turned into that for “public” (they have the same pronunciation). This told me that it was time to change my fundamental understanding of cultivation.
Since the beginning, all I wanted to do was to cultivate. I wanted to improve, no one could disturb me, I wanted it this way, that way, and so on. I had such an enormous ego. Even when I promoted Dafa and worked on projects, I was still centered on myself. I started to realize that I should put the Fa first and foremost, as it is fundamental to everything; I should assimilate to the Fa instead of to my wishes.
I really felt like what Master said,
“After passing the shady willow trees, there will be bright flowers and another village ahead!” (Lecture Nine, Zhuan Falun)
At later Fa-study sessions, I enlightened to higher levels of Fa principles. I realized that an individual is like a particle of the Fa, moving in the universe based on the law of the universe.
One time during meditation I saw that various Buddhas, Daos and Gods within my dimension were watching me. They said, “The Placement of the Mysterious Pass has been achieved. This kid is teachable.” Then they vanished one after another. Master’s voice appeared from somewhere, saying, “You [need to] cultivate a universe.”
My mind was completely blank at that moment. Then I started to think about how hard it would be to cultivate a universe. Master seemed to see my hesitation and imprinted another snippet of Fa into my mind:
“It is because what we cultivate is very immense, which amounts to cultivating the entire universe.” (Lecture Five, Zhuan Falun)
Then another big character appeared before me: “to accommodate.” It strengthened my faith, and I silently made up my mind to cultivate and practice.
Since there are so many postnatal notions in my mind, sometimes I fall into endless arguments. One day I came across this part of the Fa:
“It can start from the baihui point (or also from the huiyin point), and it comes out to move along the borderline between yin and yang.” (Lecture Eight, Zhuan Falun)
I realized that a good cultivator should be beyond ying and yang [female – yin, male – yang]. When I’m not in it, I’m lifted above and beyond such conflicts.
The other day, another layer of meaning in the following passage of Master's teaching revealed itself:
“It is because what we cultivate is very immense, which is the same as cultivating the entire universe. Then think about it, everyone: This universe consists of two major schools, the Buddha School and the Tao School. With either of them excluded, it will not constitute a complete universe, and neither can it be called a complete universe.” (Lecture Five, Zhuan Falun)
Fellow practitioners are from all different paradises; some are Buddhas, some are Daos, and there are also some from the Qimen School. So, I should expand my capacity to include as many people as possible.
I realize that every conflict is a good chance to increase my capacity. Whenever I feel “unhappy,” there must be some attachments in me, and it’s time for me to find it and let it go. Whenever I find oddities in family members or friends, I learned to say to myself, “It’s time for me to improve.”
“The Tao school usually regards the upper body as yang and the lower body as yin.” (Lecture Five, Zhuan Falun)
I think that if I always see shortcomings in other people, it would be the same as looking at people from the perspective of the lower part. Because I was stooping to that low perspective, I was seeing their negative, or yin, side; only by elevating my xinxing would I be able to see the upper (yang), good side of others.
Improving While Distributing Epoch Times Newspapers
The CCP’s soft power infiltration leaves many Westerners and the Australian government with a biased opinion about Falun Gong. Many people could not see the CCP’s malicious intent. Earlier this year, the once-discontinued English Epoch Times (EET) finally resumed publication. This would be a powerful vehicle to clarify the truth to the Western world.
Canberra is definitely an important city in the EET distribution network. Because papers are printed in Sydney, someone needs to drive them to Canberra once they’re printed.
One day a practitioner offered me the role of transporting the paper to Canberra. I figured that the round trip would take more than 10 hours in one day each week. Also, if my job fell on the day that I needed to drive to Canberra, I’d lose my income for that day. So I declined. But the practitioner insisted, saying that it was really hard to find someone to fill the role, pleaded with me to reconsider, and stressed the importance of the paper reaching government offices and higher levels of society.
To take on the role or not was a hard decision for me. Then I thought: didn’t I follow Master to come down to the world to save sentient beings? This is my mission. So I said yes. Through the process, I could see I was still attached to benefits in ordinary society.
One night, I studied this portion of Master's Fa:
“Think about it, everyone: Isn’t it you who suffers knowingly? Isn’t it your Main Soul that sacrifices? As to what you have lost among everyday people, haven’t you knowingly lost it? Then this gong should belong to you, as whoever loses, gains.” (Lecture Eight, Zhuan Falun)
I felt ashamed of my previous thinking. Australia is a democratic country, and government officials are representatives of people in that country. If they understand the truth and choose a bright future, it means all the people they represent make the good choice too. It’s the same idea as cultivators serving as representatives of our sentient beings in our paradises. I realized that this is a great deal, so I felt calm about my decision after that.
On the second day of my first trip to Canberra, I took up extra distribution work, including delivery to 11 councilors, two state members of parliament, and a federal member. I am so thankful to Master, Dafa, and my colleagues at the Epoch Times. I am so honored to have the opportunity to do these things.
Let’s cherish the opportunity to cultivate, which comes only once in an eternity, and do the three things well. We should compare how we have studied and cultivated, to improve as one body and to save more sentient beings!
Thank you, Master! Thank you, fellow practitioners!
(Presented at the 2019 Australia Fa Conference)