Returning to the Fa-rectification Path after Eliminating Human Attachments and Overcoming a Test of Life and Death
(Clearwisdom.net) I began practicing Falun Dafa in 1996. Earlier this year I had symptoms of illness karma when some omissions in my thoughts were taken advantage of by the old forces; I experienced a life and death tribulation. Eventually, I conquered the evil with righteous thoughts and actions, and I also eliminated many of my attachments. With the help of our benevolent Teacher, I returned to the path of Fa-rectification.
Righteous Thoughts and Righteous Actions
Before I began practicing Falun Gong, I had all kinds of diseases, including heart disease, numbing sensations throughout my nervous system, bursitis in my shoulder, overlapping of the lumbar vertebral disc, nasosinusitis, and more. I lived in constant, tremendous pain. Since I was fortunate enough to discover Dafa, I was completely freed from that life of illness. My health improved greatly both physically and mentally. I appreciate Teacher's blessings. I studied the Fa diligently. Even though I didn't finish primary school, I managed to memorize most of "Zhuan Falun", Essentials for Further Advancement and "Hong Yin", and I could sit in meditation from one to two or even three hours, and I didn't feel cold when doing the exercises outdoors.
On July 20, 1999, the Chinese Communist Party's persecution of Falun Dafa started. Seeing many practitioners go to Beijing to validate the Fa, I was very worried. Out of concern for my safety, my husband and children tried to convince me not to go to Beijing. I looked at Teacher's image with tears in my eyes and my heart severely tormented. Teacher has done so much for me, and given me tremendous happiness--when Dafa was attacked and defamed and Teacher was slandered, how could I not defend the Fa and still be a practitioner? With these thoughts weighing heavily on my mind, I, who had never been out of town, boarded a train to Beijing.
December 10, 2000 is a date that I will never forget. While unfolding my "Falun Dafa is good" banner in front of Tiananmen Square, everything in my life became sacred and broad. I was glad I would have no regrets or shame in my life and I also felt proud for truly becoming one of the millions of Dafa practitioners validating the Fa!
I was taken away by the police and put into a detention center. At the detention center, a guard, who in the beginning was very rude, was later willing to listen to what I said because of my benevolent thoughts. I talked about how I began practicing Falun Gong and the changes in my physical condition. I also persuaded him to treat practitioners well. Because of Dafa, I was able to overcome the control of the evil with my compassion and eventually the guards called a cab to take me to the railway station. Three days later, I returned home safe and sound. My husband and children were very excited; they considered my coming home safe a miracle. As long as you are able to follow Dafa's requirements, Teacher will always look after you.
Since Teacher asked us to do the three things well, I have been studying the Fa, doing the exercises, and sending forth righteous thoughts. In the beginning of my truth-clarification work, I posted only a few fliers on walls, but later they numbered over a dozen. In terms of clarifying the truth face-to-face, I began hesitantly to do it when I went out, such as when I went shopping at the supermarket, and gave out the "Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party". As I clarified the truth, I truly came to realize the sacredness of Fa-rectification cultivation, and my fear went away.
One time I went to a supermarket and a female merchant called to me, "Ma'am, you are such a good person--do you have any updated copies of the material you gave me before? If you do, please give me some." Her simple words were a testimony that every sentient being was longing to be saved. Even if only one being were saved, I wouldn't have wasted my time.
Overcoming a Life and Death Tribulation with Righteous Thoughts
At the beginning, I thought that as long as I studied the Fa diligently, sent forth righteous thoughts, and clarified the truth, then this evil persecution would end soon. However, the persecution didn't end quickly as I had expected. In addition, while reading reports on how Dafa practitioners were persecuted to death, I became a little bit depressed and didn't notice the omissions in my thoughts.
"A person has many tests to overcome in the course of cultivation, one reason being, from the time of birth on, a person ceaselessly forms notions of every sort as he comes to an understanding of human society, and attachments result." "And yet a small number of students--veteran students, even--have to differing degrees exhibited a despondent state and slackened in their resolve to be diligent. They haven't realized that this is an attachment to the duration of Fa-rectification, or is caused by interference from incorrect, acquired notions, which results in their gaps being exploited by interfering factors that the old forces left behind early on in the surface of the human dimension, wicked specters, or rotten demons--things that have magnified and strengthened those attachments and human notions--all of which has brought about this despondent state." ("The Closer to the End, the More Diligent You Should Be")
During the Chinese New Year, because I didn't truly pay attention to the accumulation of those notions or eliminate them, I appeared to have some symptoms of illness karma. I had a relapse of heart disease, I was depressed, my body shook uncontrollably, and my hands and feet were freezing. At that time, I thought it was interference from demons and the old forces, and didn't realize that it was caused by my attachments and omissions. My children were very worried and developed some negative thoughts about Dafa.
In April, my right side and leg suddenly felt as if they were on fire. I couldn't move my leg and had difficulty turning my body. At that time, I thought it was my illness karma and sent forth righteous thoughts. However, human notions of relieving my pain so that I could continue clarifying the truth were blended into those thoughts.
This unnoticed attachment made my pain more severe. The pain was incessant and felt like electric shocks. After I trembled a little bit, another round of drilling pain began. My body felt on fire. The nights brought even more severe pain; as a result, I was wide awake the whole night.
During that period, all kinds of thoughts popped into my head: My tail bone was injured--was the bone pressing on a nerve? What would I do if I couldn't stand up? Was Teacher taking care of me anymore (I said negative words about Dafa when I saw practitioners being persecuted to death)? Wasn't there anything I could count on to get better? My pessimism and passiveness caused this "tribulation" to become more and more severe.
Even though I had been listening to the Fa lectures non-stop, the pain interfered with my ability to calm down and concentrate while listening to the Fa. This situation lasted for about one week, when my husband and my children couldn't stand seeing me in such tremendous pain anymore. They decided to take me to a hospital, and had a doctor come over and give me a shot. I began to recall the cultivation path that I have walked all these years. I had made breakthroughs in many trials and eliminated karma. Teacher's benevolence in saving me through hardships extended my life by ten years. Even if my life were supposed to end, it was up to Teacher to decide my tribulation of life and death. I should hold on to my faith to the end. I had made this promise before: When nobody in this world believed in Dafa, even if I were the only one, I would follow Teacher closely! Teacher has said that a god couldn't be treated for illness by ordinary people.
This was a test for me in terms of the foundation of my cultivation--my belief in Teacher and Dafa. During cultivation, as practitioners we are tested on whether we are steadfast in Dafa and believe in the Fa.
Some fellow practitioners who used to be close to me visited me. They tried to encourage me, and sent me copies of Minghui Weekly. With my righteous thoughts, my actions became more righteous as well. I only wanted to get up when I had to use the bathroom; however, I recognized the old forces' arrangements and decided I would stand up to read the Fa! Therefore, I gradually began to read Teacher's lectures and Minghui Weekly in different places. When I got tired, I asked my family to read to me. When I felt a little more pain at night, I would lay on the bed to do the standing exercises.
Teacher pointed out in Guiding the Voyage ("Teaching the Fa at the Western U.S. Fa Conference"):
"I can tell you that the suffering and tribulations endured by our Dafa disciples are not only aimed at their personal cultivation--there are also factors related to high-level beings' testing Dafa using the fact that the students have karma, using 'improving them' as an excuse, and using degenerate beings at low levels to carry out the persecution. In fact, all of these have harmed the Fa-rectification."
How had I forgotten Teacher's words at this critical moment? Isn't the purpose of our validating the Fa and clarifying the truth to negate the old forces' arrangements so as to expose their evil nature? Should I acknowledge the persecution that suddenly targeted my body? Isn't it only through cultivation that a human body becomes worthwhile? Ordinary people have ordinary people's states; only a god can do what a god can do. Only by cultivating selflessness and surpassing ordinary human people can we become gods. Am I a god or a human? If I am a god, I should be in a godly state.
Teacher's poem echoed in my mind:
Your body lies in prison--don't be sorrowful, don't be sad
With righteous thoughts and righteous actions, Fa is here
Calmly reflect on how many attachments you have
As you get rid of human mentality, evil is naturally defeated
("Don't Be Sad" from Hong Yin II)
Therefore, no matter how much pain I was suffering, I started to sit up and then walk around my room. I firmly negated the old forces' arrangements; I would do whatever a god can do! In a little over a month, I passed the test.
Cultivation is a serious matter. The path in the Fa-rectification period is the Fa-rectification path for gods. Only by eliminating all kinds of ordinary people's notions and attachments can we walk this path well. What does it mean in terms of eliminating notions? Every practitioner's path is different. The notions that are brought forth by every practitioner and resulting from his attachments are different, but tribulations arise from practitioners holding on to their attachments or selfishness. Only by rectifying ourselves, every unrighteous thought, and every attachment that is not in line with the Fa, can we walk this sacred Fa-rectification path.
After returning to the path of cultivation through righteous thoughts and actions, I truly came to realize the power of righteous thoughts. Teacher strengthened me so that I was able to pass the tribulation of life and death with righteous thoughts, and helped me return to the Fa-rectification path! Human attachments and postnatal notions are obstacles on the Fa-rectification road, and are also ropes tying up every practitioner so that they can't reach enlightenment.
"A Great Enlightened Being does not fear hardship,
Having forged an adamantine will,
And with no attachment to living or dying,
He walks his path of Fa-rectification openly and nobly."
("Righteous Thoughts and Righteous Actions").
I hope practitioners can learn from my experience. Don't let Teacher down and walk every step well on the Fa-rectification path towards godhood.