My name is Katherine Combes and I’m from Kalispell, Montana. I have been a Falun Dafa practitioner for a little over 2 years. Some of what I want to talk about is hard to put into words.
First of all I want to express my gratitude to the Chinese practitioners in China. I have gained so much from their experiences and sharing. Their strength and determination has helped me with forbearance. When I’m ready to give up in the sitting meditation with so much pain, I think of my fellow practitioners in China and what they endure. My pain seems so insignificant. My heart is full of compassion for them.
My biggest tribulation to overcome since becoming a practitioner has been my husband. He was a practitioner for about 4 months when he suddenly quit. He became hostile towards Dafa and even accused Falun Dafa of being a cult. It was very difficult for me to practice and keep peace in the family. I always felt it was a balancing act. I really had to look within myself to see why I caused this. I had always let his moods and disposition affect me. Then the stronger I became in Dafa the more confidant in myself I became, and now what he does has very little affect on me. It was a test in overcoming myself. I was attached to my happiness and peace of mind being based on his behavior rather than finding that peace and contentment within me. Over time after he saw how determined and strong I’ve become in Dafa we have gotten along much better. He realizes now nothing is going to take me off my path and that there is nothing more important than my cultivation in Dafa. It seems that the more diamond like I becoming the simpler life gets. My husband has been a good teacher for whom I am very grateful. I always thought maybe in time he would come back to Dafa but I now realize how imbedded in humanness he is, and that he really isn’t ready or doesn’t have the will to let go of everyday people’s concepts and desires. What this is telling me is he’s not ready for the Fa yet, and I just have to let him be who he is.
Recently I asked him his opinion of Falun Dafa as I didn’t want him to have bad thoughts about it like he did before. He said he thought it was a good cultivation practice which I was relieved to hear, as I do want him to have a good future.
It is such a relief to not be so affected by things in the human world. Before finding Dafa I used to think there was something really wrong with me as I wasn’t interested in making goals and a lot of money, was never a sentimental person, never had any heroes, I found ordinary human matters unimportant, hardly ever found jokes humorous, and I wasn’t attached to my family members. When I started to study Dafa all my questions were answered. I was relieved to know how insignificant these things were and that there is more to life than everyday people notions, sentimentality, etc., which seemed so meaningless to me. What I enlightened to is that being human is not to get caught up in being an everyday person. Why we’re here is to cultivate, get rid of our attachments, and return to our original true self and nature.
Little by little my humanness is leaving. Whenever I am disappointed with my reaction to something or wish I had said or done something differently, I tell myself it is not me and return to my Fa self which is my original true self comprised of truthfulness, compassion and forbearance. In the past few months I have felt so much lighter and freer. I don’t have highs and lows much and it’s not a big concern about what happens in the world. It’s like I’m shedding my skin and letting go of all the old human desires that mean nothing anymore. All that’s important is my cultivation and study and clarifying the truth.
I’ve also realized how powerful my original true self is. When eliminating evil I know my presence as a particle of the Fa is all that is necessary. No intentions or words are important, just the all-powerful Fa presence is all that’s necessary. I’m standing more steadfast in who I am. I can feel the power of my God self. I am gradually seeing things with my eyes of the Fa instead of my human eyes.
I have noticed a change in me recently. I’m not doing things as before where I felt things SHOULD be done for Fa-Rectification. I am doing them because I want to from deep inside. I feel very honored to be doing things for Fa Rectification and I’m at my lightest and best when doing them. It is my responsibility and it is the nature of who I am, my true self, my original nature. Doing Fa Rectification work helps you step out of humanness, abolish karma and attachments, and is the purest, highest and most righteous.
Recently while editing a practitioner’s article I had a big realization. I realized my sending forth righteous thoughts was not up to the standard of the Fa-rectification particles. I was not eliminating the evil in my dimensional field adequately. I was not taking the full 5 minutes to clear myself and my surroundings serious enough. Sometimes I didn’t think it necessary to spend that much time clearing myself and I would only do it superficially. Consequently my SFRT wasn’t very powerful. Now when I take the full 5 minutes to make sure I’m clean and pure my righteous thoughts are so much more powerful. I feel a big difference and can feel the power of the other practitioner’s SFRT much more. Master said in his Fa-Lecture at the Conference in Florida, “When a person himself doesn’t have righteous thoughts, all the bad things in the cosmos or in the Three Realms will flow around continually in the human body, and even when they stay there the person doesn’t realize it. That’s how people are manipulated; in other words, they manipulate people when these particles are able to connect with each other”. As a fellow practitioner so eloquently said “I understood no matter what kind of Dafa work we do, when we are met with interference, we ought to try our best to eliminate the interference from within our own dimensional fields, and then to send forth righteous thoughts to eliminate the evil that attacks Dafa. Otherwise, the bad things sent out by the evil old forces would take advantage of the weakness of our own righteous thoughts, causing the righteous thoughts we send forth to become powerless.
There are 3 of us dedicated practitioners in our area in Montana. We share a very harmonious relationship with each other, greatly benefiting from sharing. I have been in contact with our 2 senators and 1 house representative from Montana, and they have all written letters of support for Falun Dafa. We have two proclamations of Falun Dafa Day in Montana. We have held workshops and been in parades in our area. I never feel like I’m doing enough though. I have to keep on doing the best I can. I realize the importance of clarifying the truth to the Chinese people so they have a good impression of Falun Dafa. I have talked to the Chinese in our local Chinese restaurants, but since our area is sparsely populated, we have very few Chinese people. I write letters to China and send e-mails to Hong Kong in hopes they will hear and believe the truth about Falun Dafa. I mainly tell them how good Falun Dafa is and what a difference it has made in my life.
I overcame a big obstacle last Christmas. My husband always writes a Christmas letter to friends and family. I made some changes to it and I made sure I had in the letter that I was a Falun Dafa practitioner who practices truthfulness, compassion and forbearance. My family is very fundamentalists and I always felt they would not understand me. That is why it was important to clarify the truth to them. I’ve gotten more and more outspoken to make sure my friends and family know I am a Falun Dafa practitioner. It may be the only way for my friends and family to learn about the Fa. I want them to have a good future. By observing my actions and noticing the good changes in my life, I am hoping they will realize how good Falun Dafa is.
I have been in the half lotus for 2 years now. I have been diligently working on my very stiff legs. I always get up in the middle of the night to practice the sitting meditation for an hour. I feel lots of pain but always sit for an hour no matter how bad the pain. Recently I have been able to get into full lotus for short periods. I know with perseverance I will continue to progress.
I had a tribulation about this paper after I submitted it. I gave this speech at the Salt Lake City Conference at the Olympics and never got any feedback about changing anything before I presented it. I was so surprised when it was critiqued for this conference. I did not realize that it was a standard procedure to critique papers before a conference, and I now understand why papers need to be reviewed for clarity and completeness. Not only does it help other practitioners to have a better understanding of what we’re trying to portray, but it also makes us have a better understanding of what we have enlightened to.
I am very glad to be here. My other conferences were the Los Angeles Conference in 2001, and the Salt Lake City Conference from which both gained so much from. Thank you all for being part of my Fa cultivation. My heartfelt gratitude to my honorable Master.