The Cultivation Journey of a Western Practitioner
(Minghui.org) When the coordinator asked practitioners over the age of 65 to write about their experiences I admit I was a little surprised. She explained that senior practitioners have been on the front line for several years. They’ve participated in various projects to awaken people so talking about their experiences will encourage and help others to advance together—therefore it’s very important.
Identifying and Eliminating My Irritation
I didn’t mind at first but felt there was some discrimination. Why was only the elderly asked to write about their experiences? It took me a long time to write this article. Looking inward, I realized the reason I was irritated was actually the same reaction I had when I was told to stay home because of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) Virus (coronavirus). After looking inward I regained my rationality.
Master Li (the founder of Falun Dafa) said that we will not age. I realized that even our appearance was arranged and we should take it lightly. Everything that happens is for me to cultivate. My writing this article was a cultivation process.
I Found Falun Dafa
In 1997, my husband printed out the first three lectures of Zhuan Falun in French, which was then only available on the Internet. Everything I had been searching for was in Zhuan Falun – I was overjoyed! I found a true cultivation path! My husband and I went to a practice site together. I later participated in a nine-day lecture workshop at the end of 1998.
That’s how I began practicing Falun Dafa. I had many happy experiences that showed me that Master Li is always present. I came from heaven, but Dafa shows me how to go back: to cultivate and improve one’s character (xinxing).
What is xinxing? Through the years I walked the path and cultivated step by step. Climbing the ladder to heaven as I peel away layers of attachments. Everything is arranged by Master. The characteristics of the universe, Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance are my beacon to return to my true self. I have no doubt about this. I’m certain that I have found a precious treasure and the way to return home.
Retirement and Sickness Karma
I hesitated to retire. I didn’t want to be involved in so many Dafa-validation projects. I wanted to use my job as an excuse to have breaks. When I finally retired it seemed to be arranged. My husband who worked with me was diagnosed with kidney cancer which metastasized into bone cancer. He stopped practicing Falun Dafa a few years ago and became an ordinary person. Obviously, his illness karma that had been taken away when he practiced, was returned to him. I really hoped he would resume practicing but the more I tried to persuade him, the angrier he became. He wouldn’t listen to anything I said. I stopped trying to change his mind. I wondered whether my excessive behavior caused him to give up cultivation because I ignored him for so long.
Although I haven’t participated in big projects, I found that almost all of my spare time and my weekends were devoted to helping awaken people to the facts about Falun Dafa and the persecution. I didn’t have space left for him or my children, not to mention my other family members.
Now that the project pressure has eased, I've started to take care of him. I care about his comfort. I help him and try not to hurt his self-esteem. More importantly, I now do things with him. I accompany him every time he goes to the hospital. I don’t think about anything, hope for anything, or ask him for anything. We have reconnected with each other and are more harmonious.
I finally realized that all these years I did not understand the meaning of our cultivation from Master’s Fa, that is, “...conforming to the way of ordinary people...” (“Teaching the Fa at the Fa Conference at the U.S. Capital,” Collected Fa Teachings, Vol. VII) but should not “...conform to everyday people [in and of itself].” (“Eliminate Your Last Attachment(s),” Essentials for Further Advancement II)
My husband and I actually lived separate lives. Except for work and children, we had almost no common language. His illness brought us closer and gave me the opportunity to take care of him. I suddenly became aware of everything he’s done, because when he was hospitalized, all the responsibilities fell on my shoulders. It was very hard even though the children tried their best to help me.
I don’t feel I’m suffering – instead I feel blessed by Dafa. I realized that there is nothing I can do about what happened except “follow the course of nature” (Zhuan Falun). I’m still very worried about my husband. He needs to think well of Dafa if he is to be saved. I have to get rid of the attachment of emotion.
Because of the CCP Virus pandemic, I cannot accompany him to see a doctor due to age limitations. His condition seems to be stable and he is still having chemotherapy. He is not in pain and works on the farm every day, plowing, cutting, planting, and working as if he were completely healthy. I’m still trying to balance my mission and the time I spend with him. I try to keep everything in balance but I don’t always succeed.
If I hadn’t practiced Dafa for so many years, it would be difficult for me to face this adversity. Falun Dafa is my true and irreplaceable support. I hope that my husband will remember that Falun Dafa is good!
Grounded Due to the Virus
The government recommends that people over 70 should stay home and use delivery services to make purchases. I suddenly found myself labeled an “old woman.” It’s difficult for me to accept being grounded because of my age.
I decided to use this time at home to share articles that expose the CCP’s lies about the virus with my children and family members. When my sister told me that she thought she saw a deceased relative, I mailed her Zhuan Falun and suggested she read the second lecture about the celestial eye. She called to thank me. Her voice on the phone sounded like a teenage girl. I thought that if I was patient people’s minds would change. They now know that the CCP has deceived the world, including the Chinese people. Now they’ll be more likely to accept the truth of Dafa and know that Falun Dafa is not only harmless but actually beneficial.
Attaining the Fa
Looking back over the twenty-three years of my cultivation, the time has flown like an arrow. My attachments were slowly worn away. I’ve realized many things I was attached to is not important.
One must be diligent and cultivate every moment. I especially pay attention to my thinking. I try to think about others first, have compassion, be tolerant, and look inward. This is not easy. But only this way can I be a true practitioner.
Time is precious and I’ve wasted a lot of time. I often became depressed and let the depression distract me from cultivation. I do my best to remember that I’m blessed as a human being to walk with Master Li during the Fa-rectification period.
Let me share Master’s poem as encouragement,
Imprisoned as you are,don’t be sorrowful or sadCarry on with righteous thoughts and actions,and the Fa is with youCalmly reflect on the attachments you haveRemove your human thoughtsand evil will naturally die out”(Hong Yin, Translation Version A)