A Practitioner's Experiences of Cultivating Through Hurdles
(Minghui.org) I started practicing Falun Gong (also known as Falun Dafa) in 2018. Since then, I have endured several xinxing tests and experienced a lot of challenging situations.
I've made it through with Master Li's (the founder) compassionate guidance and the altruism of fellow practitioners. I'd like to give thanks to both Master Li and fellow practitioners.
That being said, there are still many things I don't do very well, such as truth-clarification and sending forth righteous thoughts. I don't always study the Fa or do the exercises diligently, and I still can't sit in the double lotus position. But I will work harder.
Becoming a Dafa Practitioner Again
I was born in 1982 to a family of farmers in a Heilongjiang village. Around the time I was 14, I had dabbled in the Falun Gong exercises since my father was a practitioner. However, that was enough to instill in me the importance of cultivating xinxing, the value of being honest, and a habit of being patient with other people.
I stopped doing the exercises after I went to a city high school in 1998. When the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) launched their persecution against Falun Gong in 1999, I was blissfully unaware. However, when people around me would slander Dafa, I always told them that Falun Gong is not like what they've heard.
My father is a diligent practitioner. He had been often harassed, fired from jobs, and arrested. In 2003, he was illegally sentenced to three years – a blow to my family's finances. To relieve our financial burden, I dropped out of college and went back home to work the land. I lived in despair.
I then left home to work in the city, where I was bullied at work and cheated out of my wages. I had eaten scraps and slept on park benches. Gradually, this bitter life made me snobby, selfish, manipulative, and unscrupulous.
I returned to the village in early 2018. A practitioner whom I knew from the Fa-study group when I was younger, came to see me two or three times each month. He told me about the goodness of Dafa and how he went back to the practice. He told me about the CCP's culture of “lies, deceit, and violence” and how this would result in a dead end.
Most importantly, he gave me information about Dafa websites. I scaled the internet firewall to learn the truth about Dafa, which inspired me to return to cultivation.
In May 2018, I started listening to Master Li's Fa teachings and reading Zhuan Falun, the main book of Falun Gong. On June 5 that year, I quit smoking, drinking, and gambling. Since then, I have read one lecture of Zhuan Falun every day.
Persisting in Practice
My father was persecuted for his faith. Consequently, my wife was scared and tried to stop me from practicing. One day, I went to attend group Fa-study, and my wife became very nervous when I did not answer her calls. She sent my father a note asking him to talk me out of practicing Dafa.
I told her that cultivating Falun Dafa, the greatest Fa in the universe, is the best thing in my life and that nothing could stop me from practicing. But to give her a sense of security, I gave her access to all our financial accounts. I told her to hire attorneys for lawsuits if anything happened to me. Though she was surprised by my firm mindset, she has never tried to stop me since then.
I did not know about the importance of negating the persecution at that time. The very next day, Master arranged for me to come across an article about it. The article was written with strong righteous thoughts, and as I read it, tears began welling up in my eyes.
A fellow practitioner mentioned at group Fa-study one night that although he has practiced Dafa for more than 20 years, he has never seen Master in person or had any sense of Master's presence. I told him that Master is always near us and that we would eventually see him; I was really looking forward to it myself as well.
I had a dream that same night. In the dream, I heard a mighty voice calling my name. The voice seemed to have crossed layers of the universe and shook every cell in my body. Although I could not see anything, I knew it was Master. I immediately knelt down and answered Master, saying that I was a genuine disciple.
My eyes were filled with tears when I woke up. Yes, Master – I am your genuine disciple!
Studying the Fa Diligently, Sending Forth Righteous Thoughts
Every day, I study one lecture in Zhuan Falun and one of the Fa teachings outside of Zhuan Falun. I also read experience-sharing articles from the Minghui website. When I would be busy and skip Fa-study, I would be sure to make up for it the next day.
Many practitioners have written articles about memorizing the Fa. I had never done it because I was afraid that memorization would take away from the time that I use for reading. But at a recent regional Fa conference, an assistant once again emphasized the importance of memorizing the Fa. I realized that it was about time for me to let go of my attachments of anxiety, fear, and comfort. I decided to give it a try.
I started with “On Dafa” (Lunyu). It was difficult to focus – my thoughts would wander, and sometimes I even fell asleep. It took me several days just to memorize one paragraph. I was a little discouraged. During our experience sharing, some practitioners encouraged me to stick to it. They said that this is a profound universal Fa and as such, is not easily memorized.
I began taking things more seriously. I tried to keep a calm mind when memorizing the Fa. When I thought I'd committed a sentence to memory, I would write down what I'd just memorized and compare it to the book word for word. Now I've finished the first paragraph in Lecture One of Zhuan Falun.
Memorizing the Fa has helped me to constantly think of things according to the Fa's principles. I can hold myself to the standards of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance, even when I faced tests in dreams.
From Master's Fa teachings, I understand the importance of clarifying the truth and sending forth righteous thoughts. The Fa-rectification has already lasted for 20 years, and I am worried that I won't have enough time to fulfill my prehistoric vows and go home with Master. This made me anxious, and I asked fellow practitioners what I should do. They suggested that I just study the Fa more, send righteous thoughts, watch for my safety, and do the three things well.
Hearing that, I bought a printer to print out Dafa information pamphlets, but I would force myself to distribute them, with my heart filled with fear. I also downloaded Dafa information for the people around me. Later on, I gradually realized that what I had done was a bit extreme. I now go about truth-clarification rationally, at a more measured pace. I also participate in making informational materials and system maintenance.
Removing the Attachment to Fame and Gain
Since I am a business owner, I've had some difficulty in overcoming the attachment to profits. In the first half of 2018, I unexpectedly took over a project. At the time of settlement, because of our hard work, we saved more than 30,000 yuan. I first wanted to give all the money to my business partner, but he sincerely insisted that each of us take one half. I thus accepted his offer.
When I was ready to give him his share, this person changed his mind and asked for the whole amount. I hesitated a bit but gave him the money anyway. Since then, he knows that I am an honest person. He would speak out for me without hesitation whenever someone would question my credibility or my company.
My business involves the maintenance of products post-sale. One day, several devices we sold had problems at the same time. Although we resolved the problems within two weeks, the clients were not happy and lashed out at me in a meeting. I knew it was a cultivation test for me to remove the attachment of fame. I remained calm and took the criticism graciously.
During a major device outage, I was onsite monitoring the situation myself for two days and thus put off studying the Fa and sending righteous thoughts. Suddenly, I had a thought that I should not do so next time: I should put cultivation as my top priority. To my surprise, the faulty devices began to function normally after that, without any further repair.
On another occasion, one contractor was late in giving me his project payment. This caused me to become short in funding. I used up all of my available funds and did not know what to do if the money did not come the next day. At lunchtime, I suddenly realized that I had an attachment to money, which had been negatively impacting my daily life. I then relaxed and decided to take things as they come. Before I could even finish my lunch, this contractor called and said he had the money for me – an impending crisis was thus resolved.
I have greatly lessened my attachment to profit. My business earnings were much better last year than the previous one. I naturally wanted to share the profit with my employees. I gave each employee their bonus inside a big red envelope along with some gifts. I also gave them a longer New Year holiday and doubled their overtime pay for this year. These changes made them all very happy.
Now, I am no longer attached to fame and gain. I don't go after my customers for the unpaid bills, because I know that I won’t be deprived of what is rightfully mine and shouldn’t try to take things that aren't mine. I also do not care much when some people swear at me. I am a Dafa disciple – I do not fight for gains and losses in the world.
Cultivating to Improve Bad Temper
I had a bad temper before I started cultivation. I became irritated whenever I did not agree with any person or thing; because of this, I did not have many friends. My family members tried to distance themselves from me and my wife could not help but let me have my way.
“What is a heart of great forbearance? As a practitioner, the first thing you should be able to do is to not fight back when you are beaten or sworn at—you must be tolerant. Otherwise, what kind of practitioner will you be? Someone says, “It’s really hard to be tolerant, and I’ve got a bad temper.” If your temper is not good, you should change, for a practitioner must be tolerant.” (Lecture Nine, Zhuan Falun)
After taking up the practice, I have tried to do what Master said the best I can. Whenever I was going to lose my temper, I always thought of the “forbearance” that Master speaks of. But I still lost control sometimes.
I live in a small town. The drivers here are rude and always try to grab the lanes on the road and cut people off. I was driving on a three-lane highway one day. I kept at a high speed and passed other cars whenever I could in order to get to my destination sooner. As I changed lanes to pass a car in front of mine, the driver in the car I was trying to pass ignored my repeated honking and swerved into my lane without signaling. It was a close call.
I quickly swerved my car back into the old lane and passed him. I then pulled my car over into his lane to stop him. I really lost my temper. I jumped out of my car and furiously punched the hood of his car.
Suddenly, I remembered that I was a Dafa disciple, and felt a heavy sense of regret and shame. I lowered my head and walked back to my car like a child who did something wrong. Since that incident, I have learned to drive slowly and be respectful of other drivers.
I have changed greatly. I have become kind to my wife and my child. I have begun talking to them more often and caring for them, whereas I hardly cared before. They were very happy to see these changes in me. My family has become harmonious and full of joy.