Greetings Benevolent Master!
Greetings fellow practitioners!
August 2023 marks eleven years since I started practicing Falun Dafa. In 2012, Falun Dafa was at its beginning in Cyprus, and our cultivation environment was gradually created. People with predestined relationships, of all ages and ethnicities, met in Cyprus to cultivate.
Just before the pandemic, and during it, a third of the practitioners returned to their home countries. This brought many changes in our practice group. At the same time, I had to face changes on a personal level. During the pandemic, I completed the turnover of the children’s art workshop that I ran for 33 years and I moved to a coastal town in a quiet neighbourhood. Around 10,000 Chinese people live in this district. I knew two Chinese practitioners and we started a weekly Fa study.
Due to the new reality and cultivation environment I had to take responsibility for the coordination of our group. For the past ten years I was happy to volunteer showing the exercises at the park, helping in different aesthetic matters as the card design for the wishes to Master, helping to display the paintings in the art exhibition of Zhen Shan Ren, and participating in Hongfa and Fa study. I had built a comfort zone that felt good and was balanced with my everyday life and work.
Now things are different, I have to break through my comfort zone, be more responsible and selfless to others, validate everything through Dafa, be more compassionate, thrive to elevate my xinxing and become mature in cultivation.
“For this reason, we must cultivate ourselves well and shoulder this unprecedented, greatest mission and responsibility, study the Fa more, become mature quickly, and assist Master in saving sentient beings!” (To the Italian Fa Conference, July 23, 2023)
Before the pandemic, we used to do a Hongfa without getting permission from the authorised person of each municipality to use the space for our activity. But at a Hongfa during the pandemic, unfortunately a fine was given to us for not obeying the rules and asking for permission. Now we do it properly and this gives us the chance to clarify the truth to the authorities.
There are some practical issues I have to handle in organising Hongfa: At present we are eight practitioners in Cyprus living in different places. It takes at least one hour to over two hours to reach the activity site by car. Not everyone is available each time, a Greek / English speaking couple have to work two weekends per month. So we are only three who speak Greek and or English and can clarify the truth to people. We try to find the day that is convenient for most of us.
There is also the part of sending a letter for permission to each municipality each time. The letter speaks about the beauty and values of the practice, as well as the persecution and forced organ harvesting, which violates basic human values. We explain the importance of raising awareness and giving information to people about this severe matter. Some municipalities are quite positive about our activity, but others are not. They think this is politics and not an activity that speaks for the truth.
I will describe my experience applying for permission in the municipality of the district where I live, which I find the most complicated. It’s the same municipality that gave us a fine during the pandemic. Before sending an email I went to the place where the Hongfa was to be held and sent righteous thoughts. I then sent the letter. Three days later I received a positive response. Most of the practitioners were able to attend, and many people passed by and learned the truth. I was happy that everything went fine, but then realised it was an attachment.
In the second email, I had no response. So I called the municipality, talked to the mayor’s secretary about our activity and she suggested that I speak with the secretary of the administration who has responsibility for issuing the permits. The administration secretary had an aggressive tone from the beginning of her talking. She didn’t want to listen to what I was calmly explaining to her. She said that our activity has a political character, and that she will call me back tomorrow. She ended the call without letting me react. I felt terribly sad as I was trying to find a solution to have a activity to clarify the truth in two days. My sadness was another attachment that I had to let go.
At noon the next day, she called me back, and with a strict tone said, “you can do your activity but you are not allowed to give out flyers. These are our rules!” Then she hung up the phone. In order to do Hongfa the next day we compromised with the rules and tried to give the flyers discreetly to people who approached and showed an interest in learning more.
At the activity, when we finished the fourth exercise, a woman wearing a Falun pendant approached us with enthusiasm. She was holding a pile of Ganjing World flyers and Chinese Minghui reports. She was a practitioner from England, on holiday with her husband. From early in the morning she meditated by the harbour and then she distributed flyers in the nearby tourist area. While we were all meditating, I felt strongly within my heart gratitude for Master’s arrangements.
The next time, I decided to go to the municipality, and give them the letter for a permit, on which I attached a paragraph of the Cyprus Constitution, about the right to demonstrate peacefully and distribute flyers. I entered the official building with righteous thoughts and asked for a few minutes to talk with the Mayor. However, that was not possible because he had a full schedule, so I was guided to the administration secretary’s office. I greeted the secretary, the lady I had the communication with on the phone. I introduced myself and immediately she put her arms on her waist and looked at me strictly, as if she was ready to fight. I smiled at her, and politely gave her the letter, clarifying the truth and asking for an appointment with the Mayor. She said that I had to go to the Mayor’s office and talk to his secretary. I went, I talked and gave the letter to the Mayor’s secretary. She was polite and said they would contact me. That day I had a feeling of moving back and forth, and up and down, which reflected my status in cultivation.
I waited a couple of days, had no reply, so I went back to the municipality. I looked within, tried to be more compassionate toward these people, help them understand the truth and be saved. I went directly to the administration secretary, she was polite this time and let me talk and clarify the truth. Her typist was also in the office and a young man who is working there passed by the moment I was clarifying that practitioners in China are persecuted and killed because of their faith in Truthfulness, Compassion and Tolerance. All three of them were quite touched and the young man said, “I have heard about Falun Dafa. Falun Dafa is good.”
I left the office, and in a couple of hours I had a call from the secretary’s typist to say that it is fine to go and do the exercises, but it’s the policy of the municipality not to give out flyers.
On the day of the scheduled Hongfa the weather was bad, with very strong winds, a lot of dust in the air and no people on the streets. There were three of us with two kids and decided instead to distribute flyers in letterboxes in the nearby area.
The issue with this municipality remains unsolved. I have to go back in September to speak directly to the mayor. In the meantime I have to look within to eliminate my attachment to fear and disappointment.
My involvement in the European project to contact politicians, MPs and MEPs to clarify the truth about forced organ harvesting is another opportunity for cultivation, but rather difficult for me, as politics is not my favourite subject. In order to help my country I accepted this responsibility to send letters and try to contact these people.
From the beginning I found myself in anxiety and confusion. So much information, guidelines and sharings were given and discussed during the online meetings. The practitioners from several European countries had a lot of experience in these matters. Some others were at the beginning of building trustful relationships with their politicians. The only experience I had so far was during the pandemic when, with few other practitioners, we wrote a truth clarification letter and sent it via email to politicians, MPs and MEPs.
A lot of interference and thought karma came to my mind, making me think about what am I doing in this project. I had a loss of memory and was feeling depressed. Once more I had to wake up, clear my mind, send righteous thoughts and find the balance of what I am able to do at this level of my cultivation.
Master said: “In other dimensions everything is alive, and karma is no exception. With any true practice one must eliminate karma. To eliminate karma means to destroy it, to transform it. Naturally, the karma won’t go for it, and so you will face adversity and obstacles.” (The Importance of a Strong Mind, The Sixth Talk, Zhuan Falun)
What I kept most from the sharing in this group was about how to approach politicians and VIPs. We came to understand it was a great opportunity to save these people by reaching their heart with truth clarification.
Having this in mind I tried my best to send letters and contact our MEPs on the UN International Day in Support of Victims of Torture. I managed to talk to the assistants of three of them. Two of them were very positive to support the resolution and one of the MEPs called me back to show his personal support and interest on the day of the practitioners Falun Dafa event in Brussels.
I also had the chance to meet and clarify the truth to the president of our parliament at the opening of an art exhibition in the House of Parliament in Nicosia. The strong righteous thoughts of two fellow practitioners who happened to be there, after Master’s arrangements, helped me the most to make the approach.
I will try to do my best, be more diligent and have a strong mind, to reach people’s hearts and save them.
Thank you, Benevolent Master!
Thank you, fellow practitioners!
(Selected article for the European Fa-conference 2023 in Paris)
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