[Celebrating World Falun Dafa Day] A Teacher’s Compassion Awakens Her Students True Nature
(Minghui.org) I became a middle school teacher after graduating from college in 1987. In 1992, I was awarded first place for distinguished teachers in the county. Throughout the years I was given several awards and honors. I was considered the “top teacher” in the eyes of my colleagues and students.
As my renown as a teacher grew, so did my ego and temper. Sometimes I got so angry that I shouted at my students. Other times I abruptly left the classroom and only returned when the students apologized to me.
I only cared about what I wanted to teach, regardless of the students’ ability or age. In short, I was self-centered and never considered others’ feelings. My colleagues and students thought I was “ haughty.” I actually believed that I was better than everyone else.
I began to suffer from frequent headaches, insomnia, and Meniere’s disease.
In January 1997, I found a copy of Zhuan Falun, the guiding book of Falun Dafa, at my mother and began to read it. I learned why people get ill and why I'd always been so curious about Buddhas and gods. I felt fortunate to have found a genuine cultivation practice and a master to guide me.
Nurturing Instead of Lecturing
The more I read the teachings, the more I realized how great the Fa is. My thoughts became clear and work became easy. I felt refreshed and cheerful after doing the exercises each morning. I started to copy and memorize Master Li's teachings. All my physical discomfort was gone, and my outlook on life became positive.
I started to see my students differently: they were not only my students but also souls that needed my compassion
Besides teaching my students textbook knowledge, I added Dafa’s principles. Whenever I taught, I remembered Master’s compassionate smile. My attitude and tone of voice softened. I was able to talk calmly to mischievous students. We even became friends. Master said,
“They will distinguish the righteous from the evil, obtain true teachings, lighten their bodies, enhance their wisdom, enrich their hearts, and board the boat of the Fa, sailing smoothly.” (“Enlightenment,” Essentials for Further Advancement)
The Fa gave me wisdom. I seldom needed to do intensive class preparation. A glance through the textbook was enough for me to know what I would teach that day.
My lectures were lively, and my students were relaxed and content. Our principal’s daughter and a chairman’s niece were my students. Their parents said that their children were able to finish their homework in school and their test scores were always in the high 90’s.
At the conclusion of each school year, students submitted comments about their teachers. After I began to practice Falun Dafa in 1997, I was always rated “the friendliest teacher.” The school administration and the other teachers praised my easygoing personality and professional abilities.
Two years in a row, my department nominated me for the “Outstanding Teacher” award. I passed on the award to more senior teachers both times. I was happier when I put others before myself and was indifferent about fame.
In 1999, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) started attacking and slandering Dafa. The school wanted to nominate me again for the “Outstanding Teacher” award. I was to submit a two-by-two-inch photo to put on the bulletin board.
That night at home, I thought: “Dafa gave me health and helped me become a better teacher. Dafa also gave me wisdom, so that I can pass not only knowledge but also good principles to my students. Those who know me approve of me and respect me. I must acknowledge Dafa, since Dafa made me who I am.” I wrote “Falun Dafa practitioner” on my photo and submitted it the next day.
The vice principal was not happy: “You were a good teacher before you practiced Falun Dafa.” I replied, “Before I began practicing Falun Dafa, I complained about my job. After I began practicing I did my job without complaint.”
The vice principal was quiet. The chairman said, “If you must do this...” The chairman was implying that they were afraid to put up my photo, that if they did, my “Outstanding Teacher” award might be taken away.
I said confidently, “It will be fine. I just want you to know that I became a good teacher because I practice Falun Dafa.” The chairman nodded.
I was detained in 2000 for talking about the persecution of Falun Dafa to people in public. The guards at the detention center told me many times, “The officials from your school spoke highly of you.”
The detention center later ordered my employer to detain me inside the school. The other teachers took turns guarding me. They said, “Your students keep asking when you’ll resume teaching.”
My first day back, a teacher told me, “You students want to surprise you. They won’t tell me what it is.” As soon as I stepped into my classroom, I was greeted with thunderous applause. All the students stood up and said in unison, “Welcome back to class!” The blackboard was decorated with beautiful calligraphy, “Welcome, Teacher!”
After I thanked the students for their warm welcome, I told them why I was gone and the truth behind the persecution of Falun Dafa. They listened in silence. I sensed their pressure and grief.
I Become a Private Tutor
I was later sent to a forced labor camp for appealing for Dafa in Beijing. The school fired me.
After I was released from the labor camp, my former colleagues, friends, and family brought many students to me for after-school help. That is how I became a private tutor. I took good care of them. Many of them learned the truth about Dafa and were blessed.
An eighth-grader came to me for tutoring. During our lessons, I told her about the goodness of Falun Dafa. She listened and withdrew from the CCP-affiliated organizations she’d joined at school. Her midterm test results were unexpectedly high. The student’s mother came to see me and apologized for not coming to meet me in person earlier. She wanted to thank me for her daughter’s improvement. I also told the mother the truth behind the persecution.
One student came with her father. Her father complained that her teachers were not dedicated, so parents had to pay extra fees for after-school classes. His daughter’s grade still did not improve.
I understood his worry and knew he didn’t want to spend money without seeing any results.
I told them about Falun Dafa. Next, I pointed out where and how his daughter should focus her study efforts. I thought, “Even if she doesn’t come to me for tutoring, she should at least gain something and they’ll know Dafa practitioners are good people.
As they were leaving, I reminded the father to talk it over with his daughter and not force her to be tutored.
The father phoned later that day. He said his daughter wanted to study with me. She liked to dance, so I showed her clippings from Shen Yun shows. The girl’s grades improve very quickly. One day when her mother came to pick her up, the mother told me, “She praises you at home all the time. She really likes you!” The mother also knew that Falun Dafa is good.
Every time another student’s mother came to pick her up, she would say: “Our child likes you so much. Your fees are low and yet you are so dedicated. We are so thankful for you.”
I talked to the parents about Falun Dafa and gave them a DVD about the persecution. At the end of the tutoring session, the father insisted on paying me extra. He left the money and ran so fast that I could not catch him.
I tutored a boy whose parents were very busy with work. He was lonely and had little interest in studying. We chatted during our meetings. I encouraged him and told him about Falun Dafa.
The boy opened up to me. He asked me to teach him the exercises and how to circumvent the CCP firewall. His mother said he wrote, “Falun Dafa is good, Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance is good” on the wall at home.
This boy suddenly blossomed. His grades quickly improved and he became cheerful. I knew that Dafa was responsible for these positive changes.
My students range from preschoolers through high school. They all like to talk to me because I can see things through their eyes. I offer them encouragement as a friend. I hope to awaken their purest nature and to show them the beauty of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance.
A third-grader once told me, “Teacher, you are very kind, like a Buddha.”
I’m grateful for all the opportunities Master has arranged for my improvement. I’m also grateful that Master had brought these predestined people to me.
Thank you, Master, for your compassionate salvation!