Italy: My Cultivation Experiences during Shen Yun promotion 2023

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Greetings Venerable Master, Greetings fellow practitioners,

My name is Gabriele Esposito from Italy, and I am 30 years old. I obtained Dafa 2016.

I have decided to divide this sharing into two parts: in the first part I will talk about the process of promoting Shen Yun in Italy. In the second part I will talk about some aspects of my cultivation and how I try to eliminate my attachments.

Shen Yun 2023

In early November 2022, I returned to Palermo to take care of the promotion of Shen Yun. At that time I didn't have much money and I was a little worried that I wouldn't make it. After some hesitation I decided that I would go anyway.

Master gave me a chance to work a little and put aside a small amount of money, with which I could deal with the promotion until Christmas. In addition, my family also supported me, sending me some money and providing a large supply of food for me to keep at home.

At those moments I felt Master's encouragement and protection and how he was close to me. I felt that each step was part of a ready-made plan.

Unlike the previous year's promotion, this time I was in town as the person in charge. Thanks to the cooperation of the Italian practitioners who took turns coming to Palermo, we were able to do a good job and close the sales quickly. I am grateful to the practitioners for their valuable unconditional support and determination.

During the daily promotion we could feel as if pushed by a wave and witnessed many moments of encouragement. Master is always with us, and we could feel it again this year. People's reactions were almost always positive, there was a lot of anticipation for the performance since in 2022 many people could not find tickets.

Together with the other practitioners I think we were able to act as one-body and quickly harmonize the frictions between us. I often had to realize how I looked too much on the outside; when I could look inside honestly and admit my mistakes, the conflicts disappeared on their own. At times I saw my attachments at work, such as saving face, showing off, comfort and negative thoughts.

This time there was a substantial difference. In the previous promotion, we had formed a group that had remained more or less the same for about 6 months, and we had been able to get to know each other better and share many experiences. This time, I had to adapt quickly to different situations and newcomers. For some short windows of time I was alone in the city for promotion. Sometimes I felt a little lonely, but I pulled myself together and tried to continue.

I think each practitioner made his or her own efforts and process to participate in the promotion, overcoming fears, having to settle the many daily affairs of work and family, and putting in 100 percent effort. Some practitioners also found the Udumbara Flowers, and we all rejoiced in Master's encouragement on numerous occasions.

Toward the end of the year, tickets for the 4 shows had sold out after less than 2 months of promotion, and we wanted to add a show. We were back home for the Christmas break and I was convinced that we would have to do it soon to take advantage of the holiday wave, in which people buy and give tickets as presents.

At the beginning of the new year we were still waiting; usually the theater had rather long response times. I was asked if I was ready to take responsibility for this additional performance, but at that moment I hesitated, because I did not know if I could return to Palermo. My inner blockage was reflected on the outside and did not seem to improve.

I noticed how I had unconsciously placed the responsibility for the situation on the other responsible practitioner and the other coordinators: I told myself that I had done everything I could. After clarifying and confronting myself with the other practitioners, I thought that I should have taken the responsibility entrusted to me to heart in a total way, to organize and follow up even if from a distance. After a while, we got the news that the theater had miraculously and quickly accepted the additional performance.

To be able to participate in Shen Yun and Dafa projects is a great honor and a unique and priceless opportunity. Among the countless and infinite sentient beings in the cosmos, I have the opportunity to be a Dafa Disciple of the Fa Rectification Period and to be able to assist Master in this special historical period. How many beings are there in the cosmos? Master is offering us great honors and I have to live up to this.

With the support of the fellow practitioners, we organized only a small team that would return to the site briefly in January and push the last tickets. The results were really amazing from the very first day the seats opened, and within a few weeks the additional show filled up as well.

I could often see that when I hesitated to take a step or action, if I could then let go of my attachments and notions and did what I had to do to help Master in the salvation of all beings, the results were good and unexpected.

I believe this result was only possible because of Master's Compassion, which strengthens and guides us on our path. It was definitely also thanks to the great effort and work of all the practitioners this year and last year, which saw us engaged in a long systematic promotion of many months and prepared the city for Shen Yun's arrival.


I would now like to talk about my cultivation process and some of my attachments and understandings over the past few months.

I was able to follow the company around Italy for more than a month, helping the media team.

The Shen Yun tour successfully ended in early May and I returned home.

The situation was not easy, because I had to quickly find a job and start saving money. In addition, responsibilities and work for projects increased, and I was struggling to manage my time efficiently.

I had trouble for quite some time getting up early in the morning and sending righteous thoughts. I could not concentrate fully during Fa study and exercises and my mind was often distracted by thoughts and worries. In addition, I was wasting time on social media and my smartphone without any goal.

Shortly after our return, the activity for the theaters resumed, which demanded constant daily concentration, having to search and get in touch with institutions on the ground in a short time and contact many people. Besides having to look for ordinary work and hold interviews, I also had to coordinate with other practitioners for local practice, study and promotion of GanJing World.

There was a period of a few weeks when I felt I could no longer handle the pressure. I felt I had to lighten the load and justify to myself that I had done all I could.

But I actually realized before long that that was an excuse and that if I had been more demanding of myself, there was nothing I could not have done. It was my attachments that were resurfacing, such as laziness, comfort, wanting a break and rest. For about a month I put some activities on hold.

During this time, I looked inside myself and reflected that in the past, although it was never easy to participate in projects, after doing so and unconditionally putting effort and heart into them, I felt that I was fulfilling my vow correctly. Although it is not easy, it is the most precious thing and the real reason why I am in this world. I therefore resumed the activities I had put on hold.

I have recently started my regular job and my time management has become even more crucial. I try as much as possible to get up at 6 a.m. to do the exercises, while in the breaks and scraps of time I make phone calls or activity on social media promotion or study.

The most important thing that made me quickly regain focus and efficiency was Fa study. I kept telling myself that no matter what happened, under no circumstances should I break away from the Fa. Even if I failed in some things or did the exercises a little less, I would try to study a Zhuan Falun lecture by myself every day.

According to my understanding, Master has been repeating for many years how important Fa study is, how it is the first thing for practitioners to do.

I feel that everything I can accomplish comes from the Fa. The Fa has given me everything, and it has given me skills that I did not possess before. Often the more I study, the less effort I have to put into daily things, and the results are better and faster. If I study well, I feel propelled by a force that allows me to carry out my work for projects in a better way, and that is what has brought me to where I am today.

Master said in “Dafa Disciples Must Study the Fa”: “For a Dafa disciple, cultivation is first priority. That’s because if you fail to cultivate well, you will not be able to accomplish what you are to do; and if you fail to cultivate well, your power to save sentient beings will not be that great. And if you cultivate a little worse, then you will view and consider problems in the manner that ordinary people do, which would be still more awful. So you absolutely mustn’t slack off or lower your guard. This predestined opportunity of tens of millions of years, or even eons, and the long wait we have all been through, as with all that we have borne throughout history—all of it was for today. If at this critical time you fail to do well what you should do, it will be, after things become clear in the future, just unbearably miserable for you and for your beings. So you absolutely mustn’t let down your guard.” (Fa Teaching Given at the 2011 Washington, D.C. Metro Area Fa Conference)

According to my understanding of what Master has taught us, our cultivation is such that the part cultivated well is separated. We lead ordinary lives in society and do not perceive great changes. We cannot see the true plan of phenomena or the truth; we should be careful not to fall into discouragement or skepticism.

Time is running fast and every opportunity for cultivation will not return

I understand that the countless years of waiting and cycles of existences were all for this life. I absolutely cannot waste time, precious time to spend helping Master and honoring my vows. When I have difficult times, I repeat to myself, "Who am I? I am a Dafa Disciple of the Fa-rectification Period."

Recently I feel that I have failed a test related to Truth. Because of my attachment of fear and saving face, I was not completely truthful during a job interview. This situation had occurred before and caused me concern.

I was able to get the job anyway because of my real skills and realized that I would get it anyway, as I understood that what is not mine, I cannot get even by fighting; what is mine, I cannot lose. But what happened made me reflect on how many attachments I still have and how I am still unable to let go of everything and reach the standard necessary for a true cultivator.

Master said in Zhuan Falun, Lecture Four “Transformation of Karma”: “You will be made to abandon all those attachments that cannot be given up among everyday people. As long as you have them, all of those attachments must be removed in different environments. You will be made to stumble, whereby you will become enlightened to the Tao. This is how one goes through cultivation practice.”

It would be wrong to torture oneself because of mistakes made; compared to the past I feel I have overcome this point. I often used to feel very bad for quite some time after making a mistake or if I noticed something that was not right, and it caused me a lot of pressure. With time I understood that this was a loophole that the old forces could exploit.

Now I understand that every test is arranged and targets precisely our attachments and aspects to improve. Chance does not exist in cultivation. After a mistake I have to get back up quickly and continue to do well and not repeat it. I feel that this is what Master expects of me.

Thank you Master, Thank you fellow practitioners.


(Selected article for the European Fa-conference 2023 in Paris)

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