"Many practitioners who have suffered persecution (inside prisons, forced labor camps, detention centers, and so forth) told me, 'Please, you must tell all the practitioners in the world who have the freedom to study the Fa that they must treasure the environment, treasure the time, and be diligent in studying the Fa. What we regret most is that we were not able to study and recite the Fa well..." --Author's Note
Studying the Fa is the most critical part in our upgrading in cultivation practice and the Fa-rectification. Among the three things we have to do at present, studying the Fa comes first, the most fundamental of the fundamentals. "Your righteous thoughts and everything you accomplish come from the Fa, so no matter how busy you are, don't neglect Fa-study" ("Teaching the Fa at the 2002 Fa Conference Philadelphia, U.S.A"). Regarding the issue of studying the Fa, Master stressed it each time whenever teaching the Fa. What does this tell us then? It suggests that practitioners haven't sufficiently realized the importance of studying the Fa. It is, in fact, an omission too.
For example, the forced labor camp is the place where the evil gathers together and where the most obvious conflicts are displayed between the righteous and the evil, the good and bad. Those practitioners who are always steadfastly diligent in studying the Fa have treasured Fa-study the same as they treasure their lives. They strengthen and safeguard Fa-study all the time, like strengthening a dam to prevent a flood. Otherwise, a tiny crack could destroy even a huge dam. It is like a pine tree that falls off the edge of a cliff after facing strong winds and snow, since it roots are only thinly attached to the cliff. Those who have gone to the opposite side away from Dafa did not study and recite the Fa at all, arguing irrationally under the control of demons, which resulted from their attachment to human sentimentality. Thus, they have become the tools of the evil's slander and criticism of Master and Dafa. Regarding the importance of studying the Fa, the evil has realized it too. As soon as the practitioners inside read Master's articles, there is a large number of "solemn declarations." The evil cannot control such a situation, so they try to block the spread of Master's articles by all means, cramming the minds of practitioners with lies and false images. Master says:
"When I taught the Fa I told you before about all the problems that might occur during this malicious and destructive examination. It is indeed difficult for those who haven't truly done cultivation to come through this. Now you can see why I've often told you to read the book more, right?! The Fa can break all attachments, the Fa can destroy all evils, the Fa can shatter all lies, and the Fa can strengthen righteous thoughts." ("Drive Out Interference," Essentials for Further Advancement II)
Therefore, the degree of the heart for Fa-study is like the root of the plant, that is, the deeper, the more solid. One's pursuit of the surface while ignoring the root becomes an excuse the evil uses to control practitioners. If one does not study the Fa well, one cannot achieve a good effect when sending forth righteous thoughts and will also meet obstacles when clarifying the truth.
Many practitioners who suffered persecution inside told me, "You must tell all the practitioners in the world who have the freedom to study the Fa that they must treasure the environment, treasure the time, and be diligent in studying the Fa. What we regret most is that we were not able to study and recite the Fa well."
In addition, the practitioners outside generally cannot realize and experience the importance of studying the Fa as deeply as the practitioners inside. Specifically they cannot understand what it feels like when one is placed in isolation and persecuted by the evil, and cannot have access to the Fa. It is like the small plants in a dry land awaiting the rain or a person in a desert longing for an oasis. Once there was such a practitioner who was about to collapse when he received the article "A Suggestion." Under strict surveillance, he took the risk of getting a prolonged prison term and managed to learn to recite the article in one night. The next day, when the collaborators came to torment him, he recited from the new article. Because of the power of the Fa, even the collaborators were astonished. The article enabled him to get through his most difficult period and become one of the diligent Dafa practitioners. This shows how important it is to study the Fa at the point of life and death.
It was very difficult to have access to the Fa there. One has to remember the Fa if he wants to continue to understand the Fa from the perspective of the Fa so as to guide his cultivation practice for a long time. The control imposed on steadfast practitioners inside is unprecedented. In each room, there were two to three prisoners on duty watching over Dafa practitioners' every action. They took notes everyday. Meanwhile, the evil did not fully believe the prisoners, fearing that we would clarify the truth to the prisoners. The rooms were equipped with visual and audio monitoring devices, and there were police walking in the corridors at all times. In such a malicious environment, we managed to recite many articles such as "Eliminate Your Last Attachments" and "Path." We also managed to recite the longer teachings such as "Teaching the Fa at the Western U.S. Fa Conference" from Guiding the Voyage. One fellow practitioner spent more than twenty nights reciting "Teaching the Fa at the Western U.S. Fa Conference" from Guiding the Voyage, sleeping only about four hours a day and facing the risk of being discovered by the evil at any time. We exhausted all means in order to study and recite the Fa. An old Chinese saying states that, "One feels regretful about not studying more when he needs to know something." The practitioners suffering persecution inside prisons and labor camps envy practitioners who are able to study the Fa freely! Some detainees in the forced labor camp who had been made to watch over Dafa practitioners obtained the Fa after we clarified the truth to them. Once, a detainee who obtained the Fa told me, "Look at that guy. He is not like a Dafa practitioner. The number of poems in Hongyin he can remember is fewer than the number I can remember! That is why he went in the opposite direction." I felt sad after hearing this. I thought to myself, "Those practitioners outside, what a good thing it would be if you could remember more of the Fa!" When I shared experiences with other fellow practitioners after I was released, I discovered that many practitioners had forgotten the poems in Hong Yin.
Those of us who have the freedom to study the Fa openly should treasure the opportunity. Some steadfast practitioners have forgotten their arduous experiences after being set free. Another old Chinese saying is, "A knife will rust if not sharpened." Because some of the true practitioners inside kept on learning and reciting the Fa, they had very strong righteous thoughts and could let go of the attachment of life and death many times. As a result the evil could not move them. Some practitioners, however, slacked off in Fa-study and reciting the Fa for a long, drawn out period. Some even forgot a lot of the Fa. Master has said, "Your righteous thoughts and everything you accomplish come from the Fa, so no matter how busy you are, don't neglect Fa-study" ("Teaching the Fa at the 2002 Fa Conference Philadelphia, U.S.A").
How many lives has Master sacrificed in order to establish predestined relationships with practitioners in these five thousand years? The countless lives and the establishment of the relationship are just for this last scene of the big play. Such immense mercy cannot be expressed in human language! Let all of us Data practitioners study the Fa well, fulfill our mission of Fa-rectification, and save the sentient beings in order to show our thanks to Teacher.