(Minghui.org) I am 65 years old. I have been practicing Falun Dafa for about eight years. Although I was given Falun Dafa informational materials twice in the past – in Odessa and Kyiv – I did not read them or start to practice at that time.
As a youngster I grew up without parents, and was brought up in a boarding school. I had to go through many trials and tribulations, including not getting enough to eat, resulting in starvation. The teachers beat us. I learned to endure a lot. Despite all of this, I remained kind to others. Education at the school was based on the principles of communist ideology, on competition, envy, and selfishness – lying was the norm. Since I was a child I read a lot, studied hard, and dreamed of working in the special forces. Thus, I tried to be disciplined and had no bad habits.
After I started practicing Falun Dafa I gave up all other practices, and my health issues disappeared. This was confirmed by the doctors after an examination. I hold a very strong faith in Master, the founder of Falun Dafa, and I could feel the Falun cleansing my body when I was doing the exercises. After a week, I had recovered from my old injuries.
The fifth Dafa exercise was very difficult for me. An old knee injury prevented me from sitting in the lotus position. At first I had to sit with my legs just loosely crossed. A year later, I could sit in the lotus position, and my knee no longer hurt.
Faith in Master and Dafa helped me overcome all the difficulties I encountered on my cultivation path. As Master asked of us, I try to approach everything very sensibly. For many years now I have been reading two Zhuan Falun lectures a day. One lecture sitting on my knees, and the second in the lotus position. I read all the scriptures several times. I do the exercises twice a day, and do the second exercise for an hour.
“Clarifying the facts and saving sentient beings are what you need to accomplish. There is nothing else for you to accomplish. There is nothing else in this world that you need to accomplish.” (“Fa Teaching Given at the 2015 New York Fa Conference,” Collected Fa Teachings, Vol. XIII)
After I began Dafa cultivation, I wanted to tell everyone about it. I bought books and distributed them to my former colleagues. Also my children have read Zhuan Falun. But the desire to constantly achieve results did not always bring success. Some read Zhuan Falun, and some did not, despite my asking them. I don’t participate in specific Dafa projects, but I always try to distribute a lot of Dafa materials in different languages, and I consider saving people as my main project. I know that everyone whom I meet needs to be saved.
I live outside of the city and have to travel two hours each way, five times a week, carrying a heavy backpack on my shoulders to get to the practice site. I am one of the practitioners responsible for the practice site in Khreshchatyk, and I have never failed to fulfill my obligations. This is a very important place, the city administration is located there, and a lot of tourists frequent the area. I ask everyone to sign the petition calling for an end to the persecution in China.
When I first started clarifying the truth, I spoke very loudly and went on and on. My fellow practitioners pointed this out to me, and now I have better control of myself. I also try not to react when someone praises me.
“I have always taught that a practitioner should look at things in the opposite way of how people normally do. When things go badly for you, you should see it as good, and understand that it’s meant to help you rise higher. [You should think,] “I’ve got to handle it well. This is a test for me to cultivate through, another test.” And when things go well for you, you should remind yourself, “I can’t get too happy. When all is well, I can’t improve and can easily slide downward.”” (“Teaching the Fa in Washington D.C. in 2018,” Collected Fa Teachings, Vol. XV)
Khreshchatyk Street in the capital of Ukraine is one of the most important places for saving people. But when there are confrontations between Dafa practitioners, bad things happen. If there are contradictions among the practitioners, then problems arise. One day, the practitioners had an argument at the practice site when I was clarifying the truth to my former colleague.
When I turned around, I saw that people were looking at a rat, which calmly went down the steps to the sidewalk below, came over, and sat down next to the practitioner who'd started the argument. The rat is a symbol of anger and aggression. The other practitioners were doing the second exercise. I bent down to the rat and told it not to interfere with practitioners doing Dafa work, as this place was holy. I also recited the auspicious phrase – “Falun Dafa is good, Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance is good.” The rat turned around and went up the steps. At that time, people of various religious denominations were passing by. They occupied a lot of space, and their music was very loud.
I realized that I had not fully freed myself from the passion of zealotry, selfishness, and the desire to fight and show off. One day I was handing out fliers, when suddenly a man of European appearance but with a dark face and a pendant around his neck depicting animals, walked up to me. He was chanting some spells. I gave him a leaflet and recited the auspicious Dafa phrases. His face contorted, he got scared, and he disappeared. The woman who was walking with him was surprised by his behavior. I was shown that Master had protected me, and also that all who practice a crooked way fear Dafa and Dafa practitioners.
There were also other things that impeded our cultivation. For example, a man with horns and hooves, wearing gloves with long nails stood near the practice site for several days. There was also another man with a loudspeaker who preached salvation along a deviant path. I gave him a leaflet. He appeared to be frightened, left, and never returned.
Also, on one of the days that I was clarifying the truth, a truck drove down the steps and crashed. There were no practitioners there at the time, but it was impossible to practice for several days. This happened because we must fulfill Dafa’s requirements with a pure heart and hold righteous thoughts. Many people who attended other religious meetings, and who belonged to different religious denominations thanked me and signed the petition after they understood the truth about Dafa. They said that communism is a great evil. And all this is the result of the manifestation of the great power of Dafa, which gave them the opportunity to learn the truth.
Generally, the process of my body cleansing is easy. However, one day, when sending righteous thoughts, my kidneys started to hurt. I decided to go outside to hand out leaflets to conquer the pain. The pain became severe, and I barely made it home. I started listening to Master’s lectures and asked Him for help. After two days the pain disappeared. Usually this is how my karma is paid off. I looked inside and found the attachment to lust and sexual feelings. Before practicing Dafa, I led an immoral lifestyle, was hunting, and had many inappropriate sexual relationships. Master helped me to get rid of this karma through ordeals.
One of the ordeals was my wife’s adultery. I did not take offense or retaliate against her lover and saved our family. I also got rid of jealousy, fear of losing face, and passion for my high status. My wife’s friends were surprised at my calm attitude towards this problem. Only a Dafa disciple can treat problems this way.
I have military experience and many connections with the security forces. I manage to explain the truth to both low and high-ranking officials. During the current war with Russia, I distributed leaflets and asked people to sign petitions at military checkpoints near Kyiv.
“It’s possible that some of you who are learning Falun Dafa have fought in times of war. Those wars were states of affairs brought about by larger, cosmic events, and you were but one tiny part of those affairs.” (The Seventh Talk, Zhuan Falun)
On February 24, 2022, Russia attacked Ukraine, and the war began. In my town, everyone already knew about Dafa, so almost no one was hurt, and no houses were damaged or destroyed. Despite a curfew, I put fliers in mailboxes. and asked people who had not left town to sign petitions calling for an end of the persecution. I also asked men from the territorial defense groups to sign a petition. At one of the checkpoints, I met a military commander of the armed forces of Ukraine. I explained the truth about Dafa to him, he signed the petition, and the next day the commander came to my house to collect the combat equipment I had kept after serving in the military. I also shared my experience with him. The commander allowed me to distribute leaflets to the vehicle drivers. The soldiers were displeased and shouted at me for disturbing them. I was shown a place where the cars stopped, and I could communicate with the passengers.
After the bridge to Kyiv was blown up, I decided to ride my bicycle through the villages. Once, I was attacked by a man when I wanted to give him a flier. I realized that I had to act based on the requirement of the situation, without zealotry.
The desire to clarify the truth in the towns around me has not disappeared. I thought it was right to seek permission from the commander of the territorial defense, but I could not get to him, so I was detained, searched, and my documents were checked as if I was a suspect. Later, I was released and allowed to hand out brochures until curfew. There was a former student of mine in the territorial defense headquarters, I explained the truth to him, and he signed the petition.
I was treated in different ways at the block posts. Some shouted at me, some were suspicious and asked me to show my documents, and others reacted normally. At one of the block posts, a commander jumped at me. Before setting off to clarify the truth, I still ask that Master help and strengthen my righteous thoughts, I read “Lunyu,” and eliminate the desire to show off and fight.
When the shelling was not heavy, I went to the village, which was located close to the place of the hostilities, and put fliers into letter boxes. I was invited in for tea in one of the houses. Near one of the houses, a group of people demanded to see my documents and called over a military patrol. They interrogated me for more than an hour to see whether or not I was a spy. They then returned my documents and the document permitting me to practice in Khreshchatyk, apologized, and said that they very possibly might face combat operations at that place.
Air raid sirens and curfews continue. Like other cities in Ukraine, Kyiv is bombarded with rockets, but our group practice in Khreshchatyk takes place five times a week and twice in the city of Boyarka. I clarify the truth and help Master save sentient beings. There, practitioners distribute fliers and lotus flowers sent by Taiwanese practitioners, clarify the truth, and collect signatures calling for an end to the persecution. So, practitioners continue to save people even during the war.
Thank you, Master, for the opportunity to practice Falun Dafa and help save living beings.
Thank you to the practitioners for helping cleanse and purify me.
If there is something in my experience that is not in line with Dafa, please kindly point it out to me.
(Submitted to the 2022 European Fa Conference)