Days of My Youth in Dafa
(Minghui.org) When I first started to practice Falun Dafa, I was in junior secondary school, and I didn't understand what cultivation was. It just seemed that my mother became good-tempered and looked very healthy, so I wanted to learn, too. After I read Zhuan Falun, I realized that this was what I had been looking for and I decided to study the Fa and do the exercises with her.
Because I didn't really understand cultivation, I thought that I could wait until I got older or retired to really practice. Then Master's articles were published, including “Practicing Cultivation After Retirement” (Essentials for Further Advancement). When I read the article, I realized that Master was talking about me and I became serious about cultivation. Whenever I had time, I would go study the teachings with a group or do the exercises at the practice site. I thought it would be nice if I could host a group study. To my surprise, fellow practitioners started to come to my home to study. I can't remember when we started to do the exercises in the morning in those days, but it was very hard for me to get up and do them. I just remember that the others came before dawn. I felt very good after we did the exercises every day. In the early days, I had a dream that I still clearly remember: A cloud emerged from my ancestral tomb and rose upward. (Translator's note: That is supposed to be an auspicious sign that a family member obtained the Tao and went to heaven.) Several people surrounding the tomb told me, “We were wondering who it was. So it was you!”
I Begin My Cultivation Journey
Over the years, I've stumbled along in my cultivation. Sometimes I've done better; other times I behaved like a non-practitioner. Prior to July 20, 1999, when the persecution started, I hosted the group study and we shared many amazing stories. I was very timid before I learned Dafa and avoided going out alone at night. This changed after I took up cultivation. One day, my teacher said that the evening class was canceled. I got on my bike and rushed home. I was afraid that I wouldn't be there in time for group study and hoped that they would wait for me. With this one thought, Master assisted me. They had not begun because the cassette player was broken. It was fine as soon as I got there. I was very touched and thanked Master.
Many similar things happened. When I was in secondary school, one day it looked like a thunderstorm was coming and I didn't have my umbrella. I peddled my bike as fast as I could, hoping it wouldn't rain until after I got home. It didn't! In those days, I was always able to escape a downpour just in time.
On April 25, 1999m when more than 10,000 practitioners gathered near the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) compound in Zhongnanhai to appeal, I was attending school in Tianjin. I didn't know about the get together so I didn't participate. One day, a secretary of the school's CCP Youth League asked if anyone praised Falun Dafa. I gathered up my courage, stood up, and told everyone about the goodness of Falun Dafa. When I finished, my classmates clapped. I felt like a big stone was lifted off my shoulders, a feeling that I never experienced before. When I walked down the stairs, my body felt very light. I knew that I did the right thing and Master was encouraging me.
When I began attending university, I studied the Fa secretly. I soon realized that I shouldn't hide. When I first started openly reading the teachings, I was fearful. I decided to place the Fa first. When the others asked what I was reading, I told them that I practiced Falun Dafa. My classmates were understanding and my roommates protected me. I later made my own banner with the message “Falun Dafa is good” and posted it on the billboard. I didn't have any pamphlets, so I hand-wrote them and made copies at a copy shop and distributed them. When I returned home during school vacation, fellow practitioners gave me quite a few materials. I brought them back to university to post them widely. Every time I put up a poster, it was a test of my xinxing. When I was calm with a pure mind, the poster would stay up. But if I just focused on finishing the task, the posters would soon be torn down.
Shortly before I graduated, my sister was admitted to my university as a graduate student. We set up a small home-based printing station. The two of us worked together: my sister would download and print the documents and I distributed them. A few times when my sister was not home and she asked me to do her job, I found it very difficult. I was so fearful that I couldn't even get on the internet. The more fearful I became, the more frightening things I saw. I even had problems getting on the internet or I had problems downloading the materials. Whenever I heard a police siren, I thought they were coming to get me. My heart pounded so hard that I could feel it in my throat. In the end, I gave up and depended on my sister.
Maybe because of my dependency on her, Master separated me from my sister. After I graduated from university, I lived in a different city. I finally overcame my fear and began downloading and printing materials. I was able to make enough for my own use. As time went by, I was able to produce more than I could use, and I wanted to share them with other practitioners. Master heard me and I was able to connect with other local practitioners who needed materials.
The process of producing materials is a cultivation process. As I worked with other practitioners, we ran into many conflicts and misunderstandings. Sometimes when the machine wasn't working well, the quality of the printouts was poor. Some practitioners thought that I gave them bad copies because they didn't donate any money. I was defensive, but I later decided to look inward. When I found my attachment, I felt very much enlightened. Other times, I watched TV while I made copies. My mind was not pure and the copies were poor quality. As a result, fellow practitioners would reprimand me. I realized that I had to do this with a pure mind. I had this thought: “Do not let my attachments influence the effect of each copy; may each pamphlet's effect be maximized so that people can be saved.” Although I understood the Fa principles, I wasn't always able to maintain a pure mindset. I was influenced by my attachments. Looking back, I am ashamed.
Although my husband does not practice Falun Dafa, he's very supportive. Ten years ago he agreed to have fellow practitioners come to our home for weekly group study. It started when I was pregnant; they came to my home so I wouldn't have to travel. They continued coming because other practitioners couldn't host the group due to family members' objections. My door has always been open.
There have been xinxing tests throughout. Sometimes after we agreed to meet at a particular time and I changed all my prior commitments and tidied up my home, they told me they wouldn't be coming. I would be very upset. Looking back, I realized that it was due to my attachment to showing off. I wanted others to see how clean and nice my home was. It was a bad thought.
At other times, when I heard the CCP might be out to get us, I was fearful. I was afraid of becoming a target. Other practitioners advised me to send righteous thoughts more often. Then it was decided that, because my home was also a printing site, for safety reasons, it wasn't suitable for group study. We switched to another practitioner's home. We still meet every week rain or shine, and I always try to make it. It's important to regularly attend group study. I found that when I slacked off, it would affect my ability to do the three things.
I still have many attachments: seeking comfort, lust, showing-off, fear, fame, personal gain, and jealousy. Although I've practiced for many years I feel that I haven't lived up to Master's expectations. There is still much room for improvement. I will redouble my efforts to catch up with the Fa-rectification and do what I am supposed to do.