(Minghui.org) Greetings, Revered Master! Greetings, fellow practitioners!
Below is my cultivation experience of working for the Epoch Times in the past few years.
When I was young, I used to ponder the origin and meaning of life in the middle of the night. I had many questions, such as how was the universe formed. I often felt I should have supernormal powers and wondered why I was not a divine being, but a human.
There were no answers to these questions, and neither did school teach about them. It wasn’t until I came across Falun Dafa in 2000 and studied Dafa’s teachings that I understood that this was the truth that I had been searching and waiting for all my life. Becoming a divine being is feasible, not a delusion. With all my questions being answered, I officially started practicing Falun Dafa.
I have always been troubled by relationships while a student—very good friends would suddenly quarrel with me or everyone would reject me when I had no idea of what I said or did wrong.
After cultivating, I understand that “Zhen-Shan-Ren is the Sole Criterion to Discern Good and Bad People” (Zhuan Falun). I no longer feel uneasy and I now know how to be a good and better person. The interactions between classmates became harmonious and the whole environment has changed. The teachers even told me to introduce Falun Dafa to my classmates and teach them the five exercises during the morning self-study time.
On the second day after I retired from the army in 2012, I joined The Epoch Times and have since been working full-time in advertising. I remembered that the first time when I went out to exchange name cards with businesses, no one had heard of the newspaper before. A franchise owner even told me to change jobs, saying that “young people won’t have a future doing this.” Another time, a senior who was working in an insurance company wanted me to work at his company and said that it would be very easy for me to earn a lot as a hardworking person.
Similar tests like these continued in my nearly ten years in the media, but I know very well that those are not what I want to pursue. Although this period of time is hard, my wish is to use the media to clarify the truth rapidly and widely and save sentient beings. Moreover, I am confident that I can do well in this job and maintain a normal life.
It has been proven that I have passed the most difficult time; I have established a family and still maintained a good life. As the progress of the Fa rectification pushes forward, the popularity and influence of The Epoch Times have expanded, and the overall environment is developing rapidly and positively. We must seize this good opportunity to cultivate ourselves well, improve our professionalism, and save more sentient beings.
One day, my supervisor took me to visit a client who was no longer doing advertising with us. The supervisor said that we have to earn her business again and assigned me to take care of it.
I had heard in the past that this client was very picky, emotional, and dissatisfied with the advertisement we produced for her business. We had to ask three reporters to write the promotional articles for her. She also disliked the advertisement design. We found several designers to work on the advertisement, but we still couldn’t close the deal. This even caused a few practitioners to resign.
Before visiting her, I read the emails that she sent to the media company. Her words were harsh. In addition to her cursing, what was the most worrying was that she wanted to sue us for scamming her for advertising fees and causing her to go into debt. She said we didn’t meet the requirements of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance, and we weren’t professional. Every word was filled with resentment and hatred.
After communicating with the client, we offered a free advertisement for her. She calmed down and agreed to work with us again.
We carefully went over the client’s requirements and planned the advertisement. We held many meetings with her to communicate our thoughts. She gradually trusted us and treated us as her friends.
After doing several advertisements for her, we earned back her trust in the newspaper. We analyzed the results of the advertisement in the closing report. We proposed to renew the contract, and expressed our wish to collaborate with her again. She readily agreed and we signed the contract smoothly.
While we were chatting, the client suddenly mentioned Falun Dafa again, giving us a chance to clarify the truth. My colleague and I believe that this was Master’s arrangement. If we walked our path right, the doors that were once shut will open.
I encountered both external pressure from clients and internal pressure from the company. Conflicts between practitioners were a heart-wrenching, agonizing process to remove my attachments and elevate my character.
As my experience increases, I was promoted as a supervisor, yet my conflicts with new recruits also got bigger and bigger. Once, a practitioner modified the content of an advertisement project I was in charge of without my permission. I was very angry and we had a big fight. A second practitioner felt that I refused to work with him as one body; he thus refused to adopt my suggestion to modify the advertisement and insisted that we wait until our client had reviewed it.
There was a third practitioner who also felt that I didn’t understand how advertisements were executed and refused to cooperate with me or listen to me. A fourth practitioner completely ignored me.
These conflicts and gaps continued to deepen, and I gradually stopped trying to communicate with them. Although I didn’t say anything on the surface, I was very upset. Sometimes I was so angry that I couldn’t sleep at night and kept thinking that a particular practitioner was really bad, had no manners, didn’t respect me, and thought too highly of himself. The more I thought about those things, the angrier I got, and the more I suffered.
After a series of incidents, I suddenly wondered what had happened to me. Why was I upset? Why did I keep complaining in my heart? Why did I not look within and see where I have done wrong when encountering conflicts? Why did I look outwards? I was not behaving like a cultivator!
I tried to look within to identify my shortcomings, but the thought “I am not wrong; it is them who are in the wrong” kept appearing in my mind. This negative thought was very strong, causing me to continue developing negative emotions. However, I quickly realized that this thought was not part of me and I sent forth righteous thoughts to eliminate it. Although it was slightly effective, the bad thoughts still kept re-surfacing.
What had changed for the better was that I could gradually look within and see that I had a big ego, thought that I was a supervisor and had a lot of experience, so others should cooperate with me and make the changes I proposed. Wasn’t this an attachment to a showing-off mentality?
Moreover, I looked down on others and had a competitive mentality. I was attached to who is right and who is wrong, and couldn’t tolerate or be considerate of fellow practitioners.
I recalled that in some of the meetings, I had asked too direct questions and didn’t express my suggestions kindly, causing other practitioners to feel embarrassed. I might have accidentally hurt others without knowing it. Looking back now, those words that I said at the time were very rude.
“While working, your tone of voice, your kindheartedness, and your reasoning can change a person’s heart, whereas commands never could! If others are not convinced deep down inside but only superficially comply, they will still conduct themselves according to their own will when no one is around to see them.” (“Clearheadedness,” Essentials for Further Advancement)
As I looked within, I found a deeply hidden selfish interest—I was afraid that those few practitioners couldn’t serve the clients well, and the clients won’t renew the contract, causing me to have no income and suffer financial losses. Although I found many of my shortcomings, the conflicts were still not resolved.
Afterwards, when I saw these practitioners again, I told myself that I must be kind and not be swayed regardless of how they might treat me. I must let them feel a cultivator’s compassion, and I must look within unconditionally, and be good to them.
I felt a little awkward initially and unnatural. However, it was obvious to me that the conflicts and gaps among us were gradually dissolving. Things started to head towards a good direction after I changed my attitude and behavior. However, there were times when negative thoughts about others still appeared in my mind, but these thoughts gradually become weaker.
One day, that strong attachment to complaining surfaced again, and I felt like I was going to explode. I even wanted to hit people. When this anger erupted again, I knew that this was not me, but I couldn’t suppress it. I felt painful, wronged, and bullied by other practitioners.
Through studying the Fa and negating the bad thoughts continuously, a thought suddenly came to my mind: “I am in pain, but isn't the other party in pain too? Neither party in the conflict would feel good about it.” With this thought, my compassion arose, and I felt that I should care for others since they are working so hard.
When I thought like this, I happened to see this paragraph from the Fa:
“I often say that if a person is free of any personal notions, isn’t motivated by self-interest, and is truly looking to benefit others, then when he points out another person’s shortcoming or tells the other person what’s right, that person will be moved to tears.” (Teachings at the Conference in Singapore)
I calmed down and the weight that had been on my mind seemed to have disappeared. My body became relaxed and felt like being enveloped by energy. With tears in my eyes, I told Master silently that I was wrong and I will improve and truly be considerate of others.
When I continued to rectify my behavior and thoughts, these conflicts disappeared quickly. When I saw those concerned practitioners again, we would talk as if nothing had happened. Our cooperation became smoother. I truly felt the wonder of cultivation and also understood that whoever has acquired the karma would feel uncomfortable.
In these years of cultivation, I have made many breakthroughs and constantly improved my character. When my customers raised unreasonable demands, I can also treat them in accordance with Dafa principles. When having conflicts with practitioners, I can quickly realize my shortcomings and rectify them. Everything seems to be moving forward steadily, but I have fallen a lot in family relationships.
When dealing with fellow practitioners, I seemed like a diligent cultivator. However, when I am at home, my behavior was worse than an ordinary person—I didn’t hide my demon-nature and I indulged in my emotions. If there is disagreement, I would rebut immediately with very hurtful words.
One family member, Jia (pseudo-name), became ill after we got into a conflict, and had to be sent to the hospital for emergency medical treatment. This test came so fiercely and suddenly that I was left totally stunned. I thought that I had cultivated very well and Jia was very supportive of me. It turned out that she was very dissatisfied with me.
I regretted my behavior at home and my way of speaking. When I interacted with friends, clients, and practitioners, I could quickly realize my shortcomings and rectify them with the Fa. However, I wasn’t kind towards Jia and would use my own standards and impose them on her; I also didn’t listen to her concerns and suggestions.
As I wrote to this point, I realized that what I have said above about fellow practitioners being unkind to me was actually Master’s hint, showing me that my attitude towards my family was even worse and arrogant. In the past few decades, I became impatient with Jia, refused to be criticized, was aggressive, argued with her, and had a strong stubbornness and big ego. I had a very big loophole, as I didn’t cultivate in this area.
I told myself this time that I must correct all these bad habits and seriously elevate in my cultivation; I must be a good person regardless of where I am and I can’t let Jia develop negative thoughts towards Dafa because of my shortcomings. I am here to save people, not destroy them.
I took the initiative to apologize to Jia and ask for her forgiveness, but I wasn’t forgiven. For a long time, her attitude towards me was very harsh and cold, and her words were sarcastic.
However, I told myself that I must tolerate and not get angry. Compared to what Jia had endured, what I am going through is nothing. I must pass this test. As time went by and our interactions increased, I started to care for her from the bottom of my heart and took the initiative to help out at home. I changed my behavior and attitude, and corrected my speech. The environment changed and she no longer complained about me. Things gradually returned to normal. I knew that this is the power of Dafa, and I once again experienced the power of compassion and that there is nothing that Dafa couldn't do.
I have stumbled and falled, and encountered many tests during the process of validating the Fa in The Epoch Times, but nothing has swayed my heart for validating the Fa in this project. The most difficult period has passed and I must seize this opportunity to cultivate myself well and save more sentient beings, as the road to the future is getting wider and wider.
Above is my personal cultivation experience. If there is anything inappropriate, please kindly point it out.
Thank you, Master!Thank you, fellow practitioners!
(Presented at the 2021 Falun Dafa Experience Conference in Taiwan)