How I Began My Cultivation Journey
(Minghui.org) I was born in China to a family that practices Falun Dafa. My mother is a practitioner. My father isn’t but he’s not against it. Sometimes he stops my mother from going to Fa study.
I’ve always been afraid that my mother would be in grave danger if people found out about her belief. However, the threat of being caught never seemed to worry her. She always actively spoke to people about Falun Dafa. She did have her brush with the authorities but managed to survive. Many people came to believe in and trust Dafa because of her excellent conduct.
I have one very vivid memory from my childhood. While I read Hong Yin with my mother one day, tears began streaming down my face. It felt strange so I asked her, “Why do my tears keep falling when I don’t feel like crying?” She said, “Your knowing side is shedding tears of joy for you because you are reading a Dafa book.”
When I was in primary school, I sometimes went out at night with Mother to distribute materials about Dafa. But when I took the pamphlets to school and gave them to my classmates they all taunted me.
I did not fully understand why my mother would take such a great risk just to distribute information about Falun Dafa. I only vaguely understood that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) was persecuting Falun Dafa and that they were arresting practitioners. When I was young I only clarified the truth about Dafa twice to my close friends. Both times I ended up in tears and my friends weren’t really convinced that the CCP was carrying out the persecution. Afterwards, I never tried to talk to my friends about Dafa or the persecution.
Perhaps because Master was protecting me, I had a very happy childhood and grew up in a nurturing environment. My grades at school were average, partly because I felt what was said in our history and political studies textbooks wasn’t right, and partly because I just could not memorize the texts no matter how hard I tried. Fortunately, that saved me from being brainwashed by the CCP’s indoctrination.
I only occasionally read Zhuan Falun which seems to have shielded me from the overwhelming ideological influence that the Chinese educational system has on China’s youth. Still, I did not seem to understand or remember anything from the Dafa books I read.
In my senior high years my grades improved. Students graduating from high schools in our town were very proud if they got into a second-tier university, so I never harbored any ambitions of going to a tier-one university. However, towards the end of my second year of high school, an arts teacher came to recruit students. My dream of studying the fine arts was awakened.
To help me realize my dream, my mother took on another job and sent me to a school in the city to prepare for the fine arts matriculation exams. It was the first time I was able to escape from the rigid demands of China’s rote learning educational system and pursue my love of the arts. It was a significant year for me in that not only was I spared the tortures of cramming for the university entrance exam, I was also able to freely pursue my fine arts dream. Once again, with Master watching over me, I succeeded in getting into one of the top-100 universities in China. It was the best university anyone from my town managed to get into.
Anyone who has been through the university system in China knows that, even in the best universities, the ultimate goal of most students is to achieve career and financial success. Students are not educated in any morals or ethics, sometimes they are even taught the opposite.
I Begin to Practice Falun Dafa
Even though my mother has practiced Falun Dafa for years and I’ve always known that Dafa is great, I never really practiced myself. However, my serious search for answers changed my life.
While I was home for the summer during my third year in university, I realized that the topics my friends and relatives discussed centered on money, marriage or houses. I was puzzled, and thought, surely there must be more important topics. What was the meaning of our lives if money, marriage or houses were the only important things? What is the purpose of our existence in going through birth, old age, illness and death? Why are we here? I kept mulling over these questions. Determined to find the answer, I even talked to a friend but he was also baffled.
I kept searching for answers. Finally one evening, I opened my Zhuan Falun which I hadn’t touched for a long time. The older version of Lunyu had been replaced so I read the new version. I was rather skeptical and I asked my mother about it. I can’t remember what she said, but I will never forget my reaction and the emotional upheaval I experienced. The blockage in my mind was suddenly cleared and everything that had been troubling me just dissolved away. I burst into tears and wept for over half an hour. This was the answer I’d been searching for! I grew up under Master’s nurturing and protective care, yet I failed to acknowledge Him. I wanted to tell everyone I knew who had questions about the meaning of life!
I wondered why it took me so long to discover Dafa.
I started doing the five sets of exercises and reading Zhuan Falun and Master’s other teachings. Gradually my mind opened and I began to place strict requirements on my conduct. I also started to realize the importance of clarifying the truth about Dafa. At first, I talked to my roommates. They all believed what I said because of my good character and they renounced their Party memberships. Later, I discovered the Minghui.org site which sparked my interest in studying abroad. I wanted to play a part in helping with Dafa projects overseas. I began reading about events outside China by using the Freegate software.
I inadvertently used my email address in China to send an email to the Feitian Performing Arts School. The email was blocked and I was questioned by the university director because the police reported my visits to the Minghui.org site. My first thought was to not implicate my family and to be prepared to be persecuted. When the university counselor asked me why I visited the Minghui site he went on to completely skirt the issue of Falun Gong by saying that I probably visited the overseas sites because I wanted to find out about studying abroad and had inadvertently gone into the Minghui site.
The counselor made me promise to stop using Freegate software to break through China’s Internet blockade, and to stop visiting sites like Minghui. I was also banned from leaving the country while I was still at the university. Under duress, I made a formal declaration on paper which I thought was harmless because it did not say anything bad about Dafa and it was only a promise not to visit external Internet sites. I even thought I got off lightly – it was only a two-year ban and my parents were not implicated. I found out later that my signing the declaration was succumbing to the CCP. I canceled and voided that declaration with my mother’s help.
I learned my lesson and I’m now very careful about Internet security. In my third year, by chance I enrolled in an English class. It was an unusual English language class, because we were to hone our English speaking skills through performing plays. My English improved very quickly. A year later, I was in a class taught by the school’s founder. I was very surprised by the way he encouraged his students to enrich their minds and in veiled language he also talked about the CCP’s bloody history.
I later learned that the students in his business class all seem to have a very good understanding of the true nature of the CCP. I’m now enrolled in that business class. It teaches what we call a “comprehensive education” where topics from economics, history, politics, philosophy etc., are discussed.
Every time we discuss a new topic we gain a new insight into the CCP. Every student is very familiar with the lies peddled by the CCP, including the issues surrounding the persecution of Falun Gong. The students all have a positive opinion of Dafa. That really surprised me. Some even told their parents the truth about the persecution of Falun Dafa.
I feel that Master has arranged for me to take this class so I could learn about the outside world as well as having the opportunity to tell my story as a Dafa practitioner. This way I was able to reinforce the positive impression the other students already have about practitioners.
I’ve now graduated and I work at a publishing company.
I can only express my immense gratitude to Master by continuing to improve myself with the guidance of the Fa and by leaving no regrets along the way. Heshi.