Discard Selfishness and Attain the Righteous Enlightenment of Selflessness
(Clearwisdom.net) Greetings to Master! Greetings to fellow practitioners.
This is my first time writing an experience sharing article. In the beginning, no matter how hard I tried, I could not write anything. After reading fellow practitioners' articles, I came to understand that it was because of my selfish mentality. I want to tell people and all the sentient beings in the universe how Dafa changed me and of the wonderfulness and miraculous manifestations of Dafa.
I attended Master's second session of Fa lecturing in Jinan and that is when I started practicing Falun Gong. During the lecture, the incurable illness that I had had for a long time was healed by Master with a wave of his hand. I was finally able to truly enjoy an illness-free body for the first time in several dozen years. What excited me more was that I finally found what I had been searching and waiting for. I came to understand why my life had been so bitter and I felt so fortunate and lucky that I had found such a sacred Fa.
Afterwards I devoted myself to practicing cultivation and promoting Dafa to others. My family saw the improvements in my physical and mental health, and they all praised Dafa and wholeheartedly supported me. My husband and I invited my mother-in-law to live with us and we discarded our selfish mentality. We abolished our thoughts of not being willing to spend time and money on her and dedicated more effort to assisting in her and taking care of her. My mother-in-law was very happy and she always praised me to our relatives and other people. I told her that this was because Falun Dafa teaches people to be good. My superiors and colleagues also repeatedly praised me for all the extra work I did.
After becoming a practitioner, I felt myself immersed in a happiness and contentment that I had never felt before. When I heard in Master's Fa lecture that he wants us to be beings of selflessness and to always be first and foremost considerate of others, I felt an intense feeling of awakening in my mind and I pledged with tears, "Master, I will be such a person--I can do it."
At one time my ankle was injured and I couldn't even walk, but I needed to take my tape player to the group practice site because I had the only player. What should I do? I said to Master in my mind, "Master, I will go to the practice site even if I have to crawl there." I placed my injured foot, bearing the severe pain, into the double lotus position and started the sitting meditation. Miraculously, when I finished the hand gestures, my ankle was not as painful as before, and when I finished the meditation my ankle was completely pain-free. I was deeply grateful to Master. I enlightened to Master's words about being a person existing completely for the sake of others, which had such a strong impression on me, and I thought about how Dafa is supernormal.
In 1999, I felt that the environment was gradually getting more difficult. The event at the Tianjin Education Institute created by Luo Gan and He Zuoxiu led to the "April 25" Appeal. The atmosphere at my job became very strained. None of the employees were not allowed to take leave because there were several of us practicing Falun Gong. I heard that some practitioners had gone to Beijing to appeal; this is when I went on my first trip to Beijing.
In Beijing I met many practitioners from other areas, and I respected their firm belief in Dafa and their righteous deeds. I overcame my fear and submitted a letter to the office for appeals and visited them to speak on behalf of Dafa and Master. When I returned, word had traveled to my work unit and they were shocked. The police came to ask questions and my supervisor wanted me to write a letter of self-criticism. I wrote an article about "Why I Went to Beijing" and gave it to them. Other practitioners said that the article was written very well.
In 1999, a large number of practitioners went to Beijing to appeal. I felt that while Dafa and Master were being defamed, I should not stay home and do nothing. I should free myself from human notions and let go of ordinary people's thoughts. I told my child, "Mother is going to Beijing. You must stay strong." Once again I went to Beijing to validate Dafa. While I was there, I wrote, "Restore my Master's good reputation, Falun Dafa is a righteous practice."
I was thrown into a detention center. The Chinese New Year was approaching and practitioners that were detained in the same cell with me were all released, but I was not. Relatives from both my and my husband's sides of the family came to try to persuade me, "Write what they want quickly. If you write that you will stop practicing Falun Gong, they will let you go home." When I refused, they started to scold me. My heart felt wretched pain and I replied, "You have seen the beauty of Dafa and you have seen the changes I experienced. Why do you want to speak lies against your own conscience?"
On the eve of the New Year, I couldn't sleep the whole night. I was very bitter, but I knew that I would not give up Dafa at whatever cost; Dafa is my life.
On the first day of the New Year, several practitioners were locked in my cell for publicly practicing Falun Gong. They discussed going on a hunger strike to protest the illegal treatment. I hesitated. Then when I went to get my food, a pile of bowls fell on my head and only my bowl was broken into pieces. I came to realize that fellow practitioners and I constitute a whole body. Seeing that those practitioners who were on hunger strike were still energetic without changes in their appearance, I knew that I had fallen behind in cultivation. With Master's hint and encouragement, I calmed down with determination. In five days all the other practitioners were released, but I had to remain. (My state of mind was not as righteous as theirs.) I recited the Fa from memory and did the exercises every day. Miraculously, every time I overlapped my hands in front of my lower abdomen as I finished the "The Falun Heavenly Circuit" exercise, I felt a heat current flow from my head to my toes; it repeated every time. I knew that Master was strengthening me by filling energy into the top of my head. A police officer asked me, "Why do you want to be this way?" I said, "I did not violate the law and I should not be locked up here. I want to speak out for justice for Falun Gong and I want to validate Falun Gong." They made me write a statement that I would not go to Beijing, then they released me. (Later I came to understand that I should not have written that statement.)
Because I did not have a clear understanding of the principles of Dafa and did not know what to do, when I went to Beijing again, I was arrested and sent to a forced labor camp. In the labor camp, I walked a tortuous path that was most shameful to a cultivator. With Master's benevolent hint and with fellow practitioners' help, I finally returned to the path of a cultivator. I gratefully studied the Fa and I was deeply regretful for the mistakes I had made. I kept thinking about where my problem was and why I had walked such a torturous path even though I had been firm before. One day when I was studying the Fa, I understood all of a sudden: "I want to elevate myself and I want to reach consummation." How big a selfish mentality that was. I came to understand why my state of mind and xinxing had ascended slowly before July 20, 1999. The old forces consider personal cultivation priority, while the principles of the new universe are about others. Master wants us to become beings who first and foremost consider others and who are selfless. With such an impure mentality, how could the things that I do be sacred? When I looked back on my past belief in Dafa, I realized that I had not been as firm as I had thought. I was frightened and I realized that I could not stagnate in that state of mind. Suddenly, I heard Master telling me kindly, "It is OK that you fell, but don't lie there. Get up and move forward quickly." Master still acknowledged me as a Dafa practitioner and I felt firm in my mind again.
I came to understand the importance of doing the three things well and the urgency of saving sentient beings. In the beginning when I started to distribute truth-clarifying materials, I only dared to take two copies with me while my heart was palpitating and my legs were trembling. Originally, I had thought that I did not have the mentality of fear, but at that instant I realized that my fear was overwhelming. When a fellow practitioner was arrested in front of me, I was so frightened that I could not eat or sleep. I felt deep pain inside and I asked myself, "Why am I afraid? What am I afraid of? Am I afraid of death? Am I afraid of persecution? Isn't this also selfish? Isn't this an ordinary person's notion? How can I save lives with this notion? It is not me." I said to Master, "Master, as your disciple, I will follow you to cultivate myself all the way to the end and no one can prevent me from walking home."
After I sent forth righteous thoughts for half an hour, most of the fear was eliminated, but when I heard that the authorities were after me, I wavered again. I thought, "If I am persecuted, many lives will also be harmed. I will not allow the old forces to harm these sentient beings because of my attachment." All of a sudden, the fear disappeared. I felt the miraculous manifestation of Dafa when I rectified my thoughts and considered others. I was then not as easily intimidated as before. I distributed thousands of copies of truth-clarification materials and explained the truth face-to-face with confidence. Under Master's benevolence and strengthening, my colleagues, friends, schoolmates, family members, and numerous other lives came to understand the truth and withdrew from the CCP.
Later, I was suddenly taken away to the police station from work. In the station Master's lectures showed up in my mind. I thought that since I had been brought there I would not think about staying and there was no concept of the police station in my mind. I thought about the Dafa books and truth-clarification materials in my home and I sent forth righteous thoughts quickly to protect these books and materials from being found by the police. But I realized that my thoughts contained the selfishness of not wanting to be persecuted. Then, from deep down in my mind, I sent a thought: "I do not allow the evil to interfere with these policemen. These policemen are also beings that need to be saved." So I started clarifying the truth to every person I saw. With Master's protection and with the strengthening of fellow practitioners' righteous thoughts, I returned to my work unit within several hours. As a result, all the Dafa books and materials were safe and sound.
After I returned, I looked within for attachments. I found that I was taken advantage of because of my attachment of fear. However, Master still encouraged me. That night in a dream, I saw heavenly maidens spreading flowers while I was lying down on a green and glossy lawn. Through this experience, I came to enlighten to the meaning of Master's words that we had already possessed the ability of self-protection. When we are able to wholeheartedly become selfless, considering others at all times, saving sentient beings, and validating Dafa, nobody can persecute us because we are conforming to the principles of the new universe; the principles of the old universe have no power over us. This is to deny the arrangements of the old forces.
I understood that the principles of this world are reversed, just as Master has mentioned. Although sometimes I am still muddleheaded, I know that it is absolutely true. Cultivators do not pursue anything in this world; they only try their best to give up their ordinary people's mentality, notions, and attachments. Whatever we encounter during our cultivation, regardless of it being good or bad, is a good thing. Through my cultivation in the Fa-rectification period, I feel that the state of cultivation is different from the time of personal cultivation. On one occasion I had a conflict with my superior at work. Based on the situation, it was clearly his fault. I know from the principles of the Fa, however, that as long as I feel unbalanced and am in the middle of a conflict, it must be my fault. From looking within, I found a lot of attachments and wanted to eliminate them. However, I still could not discard them. Later, I suddenly understood that I did not look at things from his perspective and did not have any consideration for him; I was only focused on how to improve myself. This is still an issue of selfishness. I recalled Master's words:
"You should always be benevolent and kind to others, and consider others when doing anything. Whenever you encounter a problem, you should first consider whether others can put up with this matter or if it will hurt anyone. In doing so, there will not be any problems. Therefore, in cultivation practice you should follow a higher and higher standard for yourself." (Zhuan Falun)
Instantly, those attachments of competition, jealousy, showing off, and so on completely disappeared. When my supervisor apologized to me, I said, "It was my fault. I did not think about the situation from your perspective."
In the process of saving sentient beings, as long as I could be selfless and altruistic toward others (not for the sake of completing a task or self-improvement ), Master strengthened me. The effects were very good. With only a couple of words or phrases, I was able to persuade people to accept the truth about Falun Gong and to withdraw from the CCP and its affiliated organizations.
Although I understood this principle, many times I still could not handle myself well. Sometimes I had the problem of not allowing other practitioners the chance to speak when communicating. I kept thinking about why I felt hurt. When a person reaches the Arhat level, he is always smiling and in good spirits. Why couldn't I be that way? Am I considerate of others? Looking back on my cultivation path, I had hurt fellow practitioners when I could not be tolerant of them. It was I who had deviated from the main path of saving sentient beings and it was I that the old forces took advantage of. The old forces wanted to utilize my selfishness to move me in order to reach their goal of destroying sentient beings. I could not hold on to this selfishness anymore--I wanted to devote myself to saving sentient beings. When I looked at the changes in the world and saw friends and colleagues passing away, I was deeply grieved. Saving sentient beings is urgent and there is no time for us to slowly discard our attachments. As long as there are things that can benefit sentient beings, I will do them, for the good of sentient beings and for the good of fellow practitioners.
Over the past 12 years or so of cultivation, I have experienced many deep and profound changes. Every time there was a change in my mind, it was an earth-shaking experience. Dafa has given me everything and I do not know how to express my gratitude toward Master.
Finally, let me use the words from a fellow practitioner to express my mind, "Dafa gives me everything. I want to repay everything to all sentient beings."