I took up Falun Dafa in mid May 1999 for health reasons. A few of us, all new practitioners, regularly gathered at a veteran practitioner's home to study the Fa. Although we had a chance to get together only a few times, group Fa study means a lot to me; especially in my struggle to continue to practice Falun Dafa to the present. I still vividly remember the harmonious atmosphere during Fa study. When the number of practitioners increased to over ten people, the persecution of Falun Dafa began.

Hoist the sail, fear not the tidal waves

After the persecution started, under the direction of the authorities, the national television stations and all other media continually broadcast and published misleading and slanderous information defaming Falun Dafa. Influenced by this, my parents and two sisters also tried hard to dissuade me from continuing my practice. All I could tell them was that the media were lying and that Falun Dafa was a good cultivation system. The veteran practitioner and I were the only ones left in our group. Indeed, the persecution had ruined good karmic opportunities for many people.

I bought a new Dafa book, wrapped it up with a picture entitled "Plain Sailing"on the cover, and set it aside for my sister. Whenever she came over to visit us with the children, I would sit down and tell the children cultivation stories. They were happy to listen. One day, the time was right. I handed the book to my sister, "I bought this book for you. You will know more about Falun Dafa when you read it."

In the beginning, my sister had some interference. But six months after I started, she took up Dafa practice and was very diligent. She actively engaged in clarifying the truth and Fa validation and introduced Dafa to two other people as well. We all worked together and created a very warm and harmonious environment. By the fall of 2001, our mother also took up Falun Dafa practice.

After Mother took up cultivation practice, she also introduced a great aunt to the practice. The great aunt came to town for a check up on her heart and also came to visit her sister. Little did she realize that she would also become a practitioner. After taking up Dafa practice, she became very diligent. When she clarified the truth to friends and other relatives, she always used herself as an example. From what I heard, she convinced over 200 people to renounce their affiliated Communist Party memberships.

A great uncle was a Party cadre in the village. One of his roles was to monitor the movements of Falun Gong practitioners. Seeing that Great Aunt had improved so much, he simply turned a blind eye to what they did. Once he saw that a Falun Gong banner had fallen, he even helped hang it back up again.

No adversities will change my course

Sometime in 2005, I was taken against my will to a brainwashing center. The room they put me in was more like a jail, with steel bars all around. Turning around to the Party secretary who had betrayed me, I said, "How much did they pay you for turning me in? Aren't you afraid of retribution for accepting such dirty money? Do you know that everyone that persecutes Falun Dafa practitioners will suffer retribution?"

At night, I told the guards stories about "reward and retribution," about the truth of Falun Dafa, and also about the staged self-immolation. When they went to sleep, I did the exercises and sent forth righteous thoughts, but I slept very little. During the day, when they played the brainwashing videos, I went to sleep instead. Annoyed by my behavior, they demanded to know why I didn't watch the movies.

"Those people were talking rubbish. How could you expect me to listen to them?" I answered.

"They were all scientists," was their reply.

"Who gave them the title 'scientists?' Tell me what they have invented?" I was not giving in.

Annoyed by my remark they said, "Then, why don't you ask your Teacher to come and save you?"

"This filthy place is not worthy of my Teacher's presence," I replied.

On the third day, I told them officially that I would not watch those movies, because they were telling lies about our Teacher. The head officer came in, grabbed my shoulder, stared at me, and said threateningly, "If you don't cooperate, I will send you to Masanjia Forced Labor Camp." I stared back, "If I were afraid, I would not have persisted till today." She said nothing and left.

The head of the 610 Office was furious and gave an order to a lot of people to carry me out. Yes, lots of people came, but none dared touch me. Finally they decided to stop playing the brainwashing video, and announced ten regulations that I should follow. One of them was that I was not allowed to practice the Falun Gong exercises.

Back in the room, I told the Party secretary who had been guarding me, "If you don't let me practice Falun Gong, it is like killing me. If that is the case, I will stop eating from now on." Worried, she quickly reported this to the head. When she came back, she changed her manner, "They do not allow you to practice, but I did not say I won't let you practice. If you want to practice, you practice. Did I bother you over the last two days? But there is one thing that you must do, you must eat. If something goes wrong with you, what will I say to your parents?"

Under my intense righteous thoughts, they sent me home after a few days.

As Teacher said,

"When disciples have ample righteous thoughts, Master has the power to turn back the tide." (Hong Yin II, "Master Disciple Bond/Grace")

In 1999, just when we were about to set sail, the stormy seas blew us off course. However, the Fa is here, Teacher is here, and I have persisted till today. The many tribulations have not changed the course of my cultivation, for which I feel grateful. After battling through seven long years of Fa validation, let time be a witness--no waves can ever stop this boat that has set sail.