The Cultivation Path of a Young University Lecturer
(Clearwisdom.net) I am a lecturer at a university in Heilongjiang Province. I learned Falun Dafa 12 years ago, but I did not practice at all during the first three years of the persecution of Dafa. However, merciful Master did not give up on me; my diligent parents and sister kept urging me to practice, and my sickness karma inspired me to return to the magnificent path of cultivation.
Following Family Members in Practicing Dafa, an Average Practitioner Found Tribulations Challenging
I was introduced to Dafa by my mother in 1998. At that time, my mother suffered from multiple illnesses while my sister and I were attending universities in different cities. As I witnessed the significant change in my mother's health after she started practicing Dafa, I took her advice and practiced Dafa myself. While first reading Zhuan Falun, I was just curious about the teachings because they were something I had never heard before. Since I was young and healthy, I did not cultivate as diligently as many other practitioners, most of whom hoped to improve their health. I think I was but an average practitioner at that time, for whom it was fine to either practice or not practice cultivation. Because I had just started at university and was enjoying a new life, I did not pay much attention to cultivation.
There was a practice site in my university, and I went there to practice the exercises and study the Fa with fellow practitioners every day. We also held experience sharing meetings weekly from which we learned from each other with regard to diligent cultivation. I also attended large-scale exercise activities and experience-sharing meetings involving practitioners in the whole city. I have beautiful memories of all the activities that I participated in before the persecution began. I was happy with my cultivation life and realized later that cultivation had already send down deep roots into my heart. However. my cultivation did not reach the level of understanding the Fa and believing in Master rationally, and this foreshadowed my failure in the tests caused by the persecution.
On the afternoon, July 20, 1999, the Chinese Communist Party propaganda defaming Dafa was broadcast through campus speakers. Some of my classmates made fun of me, and two new students returned their copies of Zhuan Falun to me. When a fellow practitioner who was close to me went to Tiananmen Square to appeal, he was expelled from the university afterwards. I did not fully understand why he went to appeal at that time. The university management forced practitioners to hand in our Dafa books and prohibited us from practicing, threatening us with expulsion from the university. Thus, I stopped my cultivation. However, I could not forget about Dafa and cultivation. Every holiday I went home, and my parents' steadfast cultivation always left a strong impression on me. Dafa books looked so dear to me and the exercise music sounded so powerful, as if it were calling me to continue my practice. I did not want to face the battle at heart between my true will, my fear of the persecution, and my desire for a comfortable secular life.
Sickness Karma Reminded Me of Cultivation of My True Self
I was first attacked by a sharp pain in my lower abdomen at a friend's wedding in 2001 and was later diagnosed with kidney stones. After I went back to school to prepare for the admission exam for graduate schools, the pain occurred more frequently and became worse. I could not stand up when the pain occurred, and sometimes I lost control of my bladder. I ended up having an operation in the best hospital in my city, but the stones did not come out as they were supposed to. One day I remembered Dafa and practiced the meditation exercise for 30 minutes and fell asleep afterwards. At around 11 p.m., I woke up and needed to go the restroom. In terrible pain, I passed a kidney stone the size of a peanut. I was happy and excited. However, when my mother suggested I return to cultivation, I stupidly refused with the excuse of having limited time because I was still attached to studying for the exam.
I ended up failing the exam. I then decided to try again the following year. I experienced a decline in my health while studying for the exam a second time. The surface cause was that I had not gotten sufficient sleep due to poor living conditions. I felt weak and was short of breath; I needed to take a couple of breaks to walk up three flights of stairs. Later I developed a high fever, which brought my studies to a halt entirely. I sought help from several reputable hospitals in the city, and they suspected liver problems. With Western medical treatments, the symptoms of my suspected liver disease worsened, and my blood became thicker and darker. My doctors advised me to give up studying for the exam, because I would need at least three months of rest.
I spent a lot of time thinking while I was bedridden. Recalling these years of my life without Dafa, wandering like a homeless person, I could not hold back my tears. I realized I did not have three happy days in a row during those years, and I would not have had a future without Dafa! My family members who were also practitioners discussed it with me and shared their experiences and understandings, and I felt that I was enlightened all of a sudden, and my head became clear. I stopped taking all Western and Chinese medicines, started reading Master's lectures, and quickly obtained a clear understanding of Master's Fa-rectification, the old forces, and the missions of Dafa disciples in this particular period. Because I was not confused anymore, my strength came back. I went back to school to continue my study for the exam, with all my Dafa books. Letting go of my attachment to passing the exam, I made sure to study the Fa and practice the exercises besides my usual studies. In the end, I passed the exam with better marks that I ever could have gotten by myself and became a graduate student.
Improving Xinxing Diligently and Fulfilling a Dafa Disciple's Oath to Assist Master in Fa-Rectification
Right after the exam in January 2003, I went back home to do Dafa work with my family and other practitioners. My mother and I went out to post banners and fliers that clarified the truth about Dafa and the persecution; we visited neighbors and friends with a DVD player and truth-clarification video programs. We influenced people positively, and even some veteran practitioners who had stopped cultivation stepped forward to join us and returned to the cultivation path.
With hints from Master and also because she witnessed the improvement of my health, my mother-in-law also started practicing Dafa, and her liver and heart disease disappeared within a month. At first my father-in-law could not believe it and took her to a hospital to be examined. Seeing that all the results were negative, he became a supporter of Dafa and even wrote a solemn statement of his supportive position. My wife also changed her attitude from objection to being supportive. Moreover, she and my father-in-law often joined us in practicing the exercises and reading Dafa books.
My wife is very respectful toward Dafa and Master. She practiced the exercises and studied the Fa every day when she was pregnant. She taught our daughter to remember the words “Falun Dafa is good” and “Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance is good.” Every time our daughter was sick, all my family members treated it with righteous thoughts and belief in Dafa. When she was two years old, our daughter often had dry bowels which caused bleeding. My wife was sometimes too concerned to hold her righteous thoughts and she applied medicine on our daughter. However, it helped only once, and the same problem kept coming back. Therefore, I shared my understanding with my wife, saying, “I am as concerned about our child as much as you are, but we know that our state affects her state, and we need to place her trust in Master. She has come to this world to integrate with the Fa, and we should not view her conditions with human notions because human mentality and treatment would just increase the difficulty of the tribulations.” Eventually my wife was able to let go of her attachment and our daughter's symptoms disappeared.
I also experienced difficult times when my mother and aunt were illegally sentenced to forced labor because of their belief in Dafa. At times, I felt the pain in my heart caused by the sentimental attachments to family members. For better results in clarifying the truth, our family members encourage and help each other in understanding the Fa and following the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance at our jobs. Once we are good and sincere in following Dafa principles, everyday people will be more willing to accept what we say about Dafa, the persecution, and the Communist Party. We set up a materials production site at our home in 2002. With the equipment for burning DVDs and black-and-white as well as color printing, we can supply most of the materials we need.
In the last stage of the Fa-rectification period, we Dafa disciples need to use the precious time in a proper way and with wisdom. My supervisor urged me several times to enter a PhD program in order to get a promotion and an increase in income. First I was quite firm in rejecting this idea because a commitment to a PhD program would take away most of my time for cultivating and producing Dafa materials. Therefore, the universities that my supervisor connected me with did not accept me in the end. However, in the midst of the material world, my heart was moved towards a degree, and a university in Beijing agreed to accept me to finish my PhD there. However, I learned about the disadvantages of this program such as all a PhD students' time would be devoted to his or her advisor and work for the advisor's projects for free, and advisors would find all sorts of excuses to delay students' graduation. I discussed it with my family and realized that I still held the desire of pursuing a higher income and more fame. Actually my current position at the university, which was arranged by Master, is not bad at all. I have sufficient time to do the three things. This situation allowed me to see my attachments to fame and money that I should eliminate.
A fellow practitioner once said, “Cultivation is like a song.” As long as one lets go of one's attachments, cultivation can be as beautiful as poems and paintings. In the material world full of desires, Dafa disciples must study the Fa constantly. I often remind myself that the world is but an image created by our flesh eyes, our bodies are but bags filled with karma, and karma is in every particle of this secular world. Maintaining strong righteous thoughts like great Arhats, we Dafa disciples can not only cultivate ourselves, but can also offer salvation to sentient beings. Genuine caring for one's family members helps us integrate into the Fa. The beings who are truly related to us are waiting for us to return to the marvelous places from which our true selves came.
Fellow practitioners, please treasure these last opportunities to fulfill our missions of saving sentient beings. We need to maintain a clear mind and righteous thoughts and strive to return to our true home with Master.