Diary excerpt:

Tuesday, December 31, 2002. Weather: Overcast

I practice Falun Gong and my husband does not. We have a four-year-old son. I have been using the principles that I have understood from Master Li's books to teach my son. Children are pure and once they know how to handle an issue, they often do it better than their mother.

At noon when my full attention was on the computer, my husband walked behind me and tweaked me with a cold hand. I expressed my dissatisfaction by yelling at him. My son, who was sitting on the sofa and reading a picture book, unexpectedly threw down his book, ran up to us, and held my leg in front of me, saying, "Mum, don't yell like that. It's not good to do that. If Dad is wrong, please tell him nicely. Yelling's not ok." I blinked and sensed that my son was right and this is what I had taught him before -- tell someone nicely if he does something wrong. Do not get angry. Do not fight or we are also wrong.

That is what I had learned from reading Teacher's book. When things come to a head, we often forget that we're cultivators and act rashly. Although this tendency lessens over time, it's still not correct, as I have been reminded repeatedly by my son of this principle. This was another time he reminded me of it. I couldn't help but feel ashamed. I had to nod my head saying yes earnestly. I feel my son is giving me a helping hand in upgrade my xinxing, or heart-nature. I didn't expect the further development from my son, "Mum, you have to think it over later on. Don't let me remind you all the time. I've got to have some time to play as well. I'll run out of time if I have to tell you all the time." My Goodness! How familiar with human affairs this child is! He's been so conscientious and responsible to his mum! I felt an internal power when realizing my son's earnestness towards me. I made up my mind quietly that I shall remember to act correctly at all times, not slack off, and not make the same mistakes all the time. I shall also completely let go of this bad habit, and treat each big, small, or unfair disturbance with a kind and peaceful mind. After all, this time it was just a little practical joke played by my husband.

My son didn't eat properly recently because he always could not finish the rice in his bowl. He left a little but felt hungry earlier than usual and asked for a cake, etc. Tonight he had a little rice porridge left in his bowl. I said to him, 'Mum has told you many times that it's no good to leave any rice behind." He replied, "I know, but I can't eat anymore." My husband said, "Just finish it, as there's only a bit of rice porridge left. You can finish it." My son still wouldn't do it. I said, "I won't force you. However, I'm just reasoning with you. It's up to you. I have told you many times it's no good to leave your rice but you have left a little almost every day. Is this good?" My son said, "No." So he had a little bit more but he still left some in the bowl. My husband and I looked at each other, felt helpless, and didn't know what to do next.

Later on my husband and I had a disagreement over something, and both of us refused to budge. While I was worrying that it would be difficult for us to reach an agreement, my husband said all of a sudden, "I will not force you, but I'm just giving you a suggestion." Suddenly, where we had both been fenced in and unable to breathe, a breathing space appeared. I realized that it hadn't been caused by the division between us but the selfishness inside myself. I know that my husband has never realized this before; however, when he heard me teaching our son he thought I showed respect to him. He thinks it is correct and good. He has accepted it ever since and no longer pushes others to agree with him. I felt the atmosphere continue to become harmonious. I felt warm and respected, and I also felt loved. But I still couldn't give in, as it was something that I had to insist on. When I explained with calm words he still didn't get it, he said, "I'll never get it, I'm afraid." This made us both laugh.

My husband didn't lose anything. On the contrary, he has gained a lot.

Hand in hand we welcomed 2003 together.