Cultivating Oneself in Dafa

Shared at the 2014 European Falun Dafa Experience Sharing Conference

I started reading “Zhuan Falun” in 2007 after a friend of mine suggested it to me. Since then I realized within myself that I had found what I had been looking for. I began to feel the beauty and purity of Falun Dafa more and more. My family members also developed a positive attitude towards Dafa.

A few months later, my nephew had a fever and I almost immediately experienced the result of karma’s effect. I discovered the magical power of Dafa. My nephew was two years old at the time and very suddenly he developed a fever and began to violently twitch. On the way to the hospital, I began to think over things that were happening in a rational way. He was in my arms and frequently lost consciousness and then suddenly his breathing stopped.

Though I had obtained Dafa not long before, I had a deep impression regarding Master’s Fa on karma. I felt I needed to ask help from Master. I was constantly calling out to my nephew during that time but with no response. I didn’t really know what righteous thoughts were at the time. However, the only thought I had was to let go of fear and to save his life from the hands of karma. Meanwhile I had a very strong feeling: Master would protect us. I tried to place this thought in the forefront of my mind. Later, my nephew began to suddenly breathe again.

My nephew was hospitalized for a few days and later he was discharged. During his time in hospital, my sister was constantly reading Zhuan Falun and she was reciting “Zhen Shan Ren is Good” to her little son over and over again. My nephew is already 8 years old this year and he had never suffered from any kind of seizures or convulsions or any other diseases diagnosed by fellow practitioners. From this first experience, I learned that our compassionate Master truly came to save us. Falun Dafa is the genuine great cultivation way.

Although I knew this, it was very difficult to keep striving forward all the time during my cultivation. Particularly that karma attached to my attachments interfered with my cultivation as well as my mission to fulfill. From illness karma to thought karma, or from passive cultivation to failure to coordinate unconditionally, karma could manifest in various forms.

On the one hand, I had understood the Fa principles in a rational way. However, on the other hand, I began to feel the difficulty of genuinely assimilating to the Fa with the increasing demand to upgrade xinxing. I didn’t realize at the beginning how much karma could influence a cultivator’s righteous belief and his cultivation, as well as misleading his cultivation path and enlightening along an evil path, and finally not allowing him to fulfill his mission with other fellow practitioners’ cooperation. From the limited experience that I had, I could tell that all those were arranged by the old forces.

In the past one year, I could particularly sense the tense atmosphere among local practitioners. Everyone emphasized their own suggestion and everyone expressed that he would follow Master’s words but no one would be willing to step back. Under such a tense environment, a few practitioners tried to resolve issues to avoid conflicts but the situation didn't seem to improve.

As time went by, I began to distance myself from this group. I didn’t realize that I had been looking outward and focusing on other people’s shortcomings. I then became harsh and desperate and got more and more entangled with the old forces. I started to bear all the consequences of these negative attitudes and isolated myself from the cultivation group. I rarely participated in local activities and local weekly Fa study.

I could see how interference quickly appeared, crawling into my daily life. Soon my workload dramatically increased and I had to work continuously for 12 hours. I experienced a few manifestations of sickness karma. I even had a tense relationship on the family level. This had not just messed up my personal life, but more importantly interfered with my Fa study quality and the three things that Dafa disciples should do. After I studied the Fa principles in Master’s lecture “20th Anniversary Fa Teaching”, I realized my situation.

“But some people really don’t do much and what they do, they don’t do well. To sum it up, you’re not willing to trouble yourself and you want to have it easy. Or in other words, you’re not willing to make good on what you are to do. That doesn’t work, and that is dangerous.” (20th Anniversary Fa Teaching)

Many thanks to Master’s teaching. I gradually began to realize that my negative attitude didn’t comply with the Dafa requirements for a cultivator. Unknowingly I became a conspirator amidst the local un-righteous state and ruined my responsibility as a Dafa disciple. I discovered my hidden strong attachment of wanting to be better than others.

For a while, I regarded other people with suspicion. If my suggestion was not adopted, I would examine this person from head to the toe with jealousy. This made me exhausted both physically and mentally. Looking inward, I realized that I had been passively and arrogantly waiting for the environment to change or improve so that I could continue my cultivation.

After I studied Master’s lecture “Be More Diligent”, I deeply realized how wrong my attitude was. “Then there are those who say that they raise those differing opinions in order to bring about better cooperation, and if their opinions aren’t accepted, they find it difficult to go forward with things. But that shouldn’t be the case.” “But, when what you bring up is not agreed upon or accepted, and yet you feel it’s obvious that your approach is necessary for things to be done more ideally, you start to become negative and passive.” (Be More Diligent)

From my limited cultivation experiences, I understood that when I didn’t do well with my own cultivation, it would significantly interfere with my cooperation with fellow practitioners. If the starting point was based on personal selfish thoughts, then one could well be plunged into a vicious circle. One could find it very hard to extricate himself, just like falling into the tangle of network of attachments and it would be very difficult for him to think for others. I often thought to myself how difficult it was for one to break away from human attachments. However, I tried very hard to remember Master’s words: “No matter what, in everything you do, including doing Dafa work, you should do your best to put Dafa as the top priority, put validating Dafa and saving the people of the world as the top priority and have validating Dafa as the primary basis of your thinking.”(Teaching the Fa at the Fa Conference in Australia)

I felt deep remorse that I failed to properly face the things that happened in front of me and I stayed away from the cultivator’s environment due to severe karma interference. So I started communicating with other fellow practitioners and I wanted to be among practitioners and wanted to cultivate in that which I firmly believe. I needed to sincerely look inward. If I still had those un-relinquished attachments hidden inside, then inevitably these attachments would be exposed when unconditioned help was needed. Through Fa study and communication with fellow practitioners, I began to understand the responsibility of being a Dafa disciple through this experience.

Master talked to us in “Fa Teaching at the 2009 Washington DC International Fa Conference”: “…and make sure to examine yourselves often as you cultivate. No matter what kind of problem arises, first reflect upon yourself and the group you are working with, and quite likely you will find the root of the problem.” “For a cultivator, looking within is a magical tool.”

This experience made me realize that it was time for me to do genuine cultivation. I then returned to the local cultivation group and joined the group Fa study and activities. Quite recently we were planning to re-face our local existing problems, using Dafa as a reflection to check upon our thoughts and actions.

The first significant improvement example was that our cultivation group became larger. People even began to step out to help with activities. Last year a maximum of four practitioners joined the activities, but this year the number was doubled and we were able to have manpower to simultaneously run activities in two different locations.

From this viewpoint, a cultivator could treat all the tribulations he experienced as best cultivation opportunities and even conduct himself better while suffering the tribulation. Any interference manifested by karma would not control Dafa disciples. I also understood that if I fell down, I should get up immediately and do better next time. I should not be discouraged nor leave a loophole for the old forces to interfere. If there was no loophole then there was no excuse for the persecution to continue.

I began to organize some activities and projects in 2012. I took part in the Genzano (Flower Festival) in Rome. It was a traditional festival that was passed down for over two centuries. Enormous flower carpets spread out to various blocks covering 2000 square meters in central city streets.

We set up an information booth and many people stopped at the booth and read the posters about the truth of the persecution. One of them was a representative from the Education Department. He suggested to us to promote Dafa to the public every week. The City Council provided the space for doing the exercises and added Falun Dafa into one of the city council recommended courses and subjects.

We started the free course in October 2012 and more than 40 people came to learn the five sets of exercises that year. We received the invitation again from that representative from the education department the next year. We received it once more this year as well. Over 100 people came to learn Falun Dafa among these two years. Some of them continued the next course and many people found the practice very good and they gained benefit from learning. We organized Fa study during the course so people with interest could combine the exercise learning with Fa study so they could have a deeper understanding of Dafa.

In the last two years, I gained opportunities to cultivate my xinxing through our truth clarification work and Dafa promotion work with the free courses. Each time, if my starting point was not based on the Fa, either being prone to validating myself, or to protecting my inner fear, I definitely would encounter interference if I failed to relinquish these selfish thoughts immediately.

Here was an example. A few days before the third course began, I felt quite scared to make contact with all these people. I felt I was not competent to do so. The city council representative contacted me the day before the meeting saying there was no venue for us because it was needed for another course. Therefore, we needed to inform this to over 40 people who planned to come to the course. At first I didn’t think about denying the interference straightaway. I looked inward.

I was in fact experiencing all human emotions such as fear, fear of failure, fear of not being able to do it, fear of talking in front of so many people and fear of losing face. I was already aware of these attachments that turned me towards being more and more lazy, selfish, always wanting to do things in a comfortable way and avoiding difficulties and responsibilities. The old forces were able to use this point to interfere with me right away.

I listened to other practitioners’ thoughts. They all regarded this as interference. They told me I had to face the situation with a righteous mind, with respect and with an open heart of a cultivator.

Master said: “Whenever there is interference of one kind or another in qigong practice, you should look for reasons within yourself and determine what you still have not let go.” (Zhuan Falun, Lecture 6)

Therefore I got rid of those fearful thoughts and just focused on what I ought to do. I then decide to make a phone call to directly talk to that government representative. I was very calm when I was talking to him. I felt the responsibility to talk to him and I was aware of what I was doing. I knew he needed to make a choice and position himself.

I told him the termination of the course was very abrupt and was not foreseeable. We could work together to find other ways to solve this since we didn’t have contact details of these people. Some of them would come from very far away and we didn’t have any means to inform them in time. We talked quite a lot about the consequences and responsibilities and that the Falun Dafa Association should not hold any final responsibility for this incident. He then told me he was going to ring me to tell me the outcome. My righteous thoughts remained very strong all the time. After a few minutes, he rang me and said the problem was solved. We could continue our yearly course. This humble experience made me realize that as long as I was within the Fa, then nothing could deter and sabotage what I was supposed to do.

I was able to understand that the majesty and righteous mind of a cultivator could enable us to do the three things well. This could be tested out when one didn’t cultivate well enough. Everything was determined by how we viewed things. Whenever I came across a difficulty, I didn’t think any further and avoided it like I used to do. Now, I treated difficulty as a new opportunity to cultivate myself. Therefore, the old forces were not able to use my faults and I was able to upgrade my xinxing at the same time.

When I came to realize my shortcomings or when I had to face the situation with other fellow practitioners, I tried my best not to use these short phrases: “we should do it this way, you should do it this way, we should say it this way or do it this way…”. Instead, I tried my best to use the first person’s tone: “I should do it this way, I should do it that way, I should say it this way.”

If I wanted to upgrade xinxing and not stop to point out or judge others, tensions and interference between myself and fellow practitioners, family members, friends or even work colleagues quickly disappeared. I knew I still had a lot of attachments to get rid of. However, compared to the past, I felt my righteous thoughts were stronger and I was able to strive hard to cultivate myself to reach Master’s requirement.

Thank you Master for letting me have this rare opportunity to cultivate myself in Dafa.

Please compassionately point out and correct anything not assimilated to the Fa.

Thank you Master!
Thank you fellow practitioners

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