Seizing the Day

By Laurie

My conscious experience with the Fa began with a dream. I dreamed I was sitting, talking with a Chinese man. He told me that none of this really mattered, referring to the human world. At that time I did not have dreams with Chinese men. Previous to having this dream I had spent 2-1/2 years living in the wilderness, meditating sometimes 2-4 hours per day. I had a lot of other-worldly experiences and did a lot of introspection, partly because there was really no one else to interact with other than my husband.

Coming out of the wilderness into everyday society again allowed me to find the Fa. I had a predestined relationship with the Fa. I have always known that I was waiting for something, and then I found the Fa. I was having lunch with a friend one day and she mentioned Falun Dafa. I immediately went home and looked up Falun Dafa on the Internet, found the exercises, and taught myself the exercises from the Internet. I saw the rotation of the Falun, learned what it represented (from my level), and wrote it down before I read the book. That was almost 4 years ago.

I left my husband and the wilderness five years ago. I found the Fa almost 4 years ago. And for the last 4 years my cultivation focus and tests have been through my marriage. Last month I was finally able to let go of notions, sentimentality, and demons that have plagued me since childhood. Cultivation is a process. I would have never survived had I let go of it all at once.

When I was a child I was sexually abused. Throughout my life I have dealt with aspects of being repeatedly physically, mentally, and sexually abused, and the flip side of that coin, being the abuser. Previous to practicing Falun Dafa I looked to men to fill a dark gap. Physically this manifested in my stomach. I have had stomach upset as long as I can remember. This gap became a battleground between me and the old forces.

Last July, being unable to continue interacting, my husband asked me for a divorce. I tried to talk him out of it. I asked him to reconsider, which he did, but he was persistent that he did not see how it could work. Whenever I did not act like a practitioner my husband moved even further away. He pointed out all my shortcomings and would not spend any time with me. At first I blamed my husband; then I woke up. To me, my failed marriage meant that I did not pass a cultivation test. I was concerned about the example I would set for the future. I ultimately realized that my husband continued to interact with me to help me cultivate. Master provided another opportunity. In September my husband asked for a property settlement. And then I really woke up. I realized that time was short, I was falling behind, and I needed to seize the day.

Over the years I dealt with many notions about relationships, but there was always a deeper layer that I could not reach. Of course the old forces took advantage of this gap. In November I was able to confront these old notions through looking within while sending forth righteous thoughts, reading the Fa, and asking Master for help. I devoted four days and part of two more days to working through my unrighteous thoughts. I asked Master for help. I read, sent forth righteous thoughts, read again with practitioners from afar, then sent forth righteous thoughts, and continued this until I felt that I had overcome this tribulation. I asked myself questions about my notions and my sentimentality. Was I having righteous thoughts? Where were my thoughts? How did I think about others? Did I say positive things in my mind? Did I have lustful unclean thoughts? Was I willful, what did I have desire for? Did I need to take action, and could I let things happen naturally? Was I able to be silent? To each of these questions an eruption of thoughts, emotions, and counter thoughts bubbled up. I eliminated what I identified as old forces and notions. I learned how to say no and to really mean it in the depths of my being, knowing that many cosmic systems’ survival were dependent on my righteousness. I negated old forces and their arrangements. I was a Dafa disciple, period. My body shook, my stomach was so constricted I could hardly breathe, I felt jolts of energy run through me, and while I was sending forth righteous thoughts I would burn with heat. I could feel my powerful gong potency at work, and I did not interfere, for I knew that it knew what to do. I asked Master to help me face the parts of myself that were not in alignment with the Fa and to help me have courage to face the demons that plagued me. I allowed myself to sit for about a half hour and then I reminded myself that it would not happen all at once, that it was a process. I read and listened to Teacher’s lectures and Pu-Du. Then I would feel it build again and I would sit again. It was painful and otherworldly and I had all kinds of visions, and I came out of those days dealing with life differently. I basically eliminated what I would call the wounded child within me, a demon that ruled me and the relationship I had with my husband. Many human notions that I was attached to don’t seem to affect me now.

I went through the property settlement with my husband and was able to stay detached, but caring. I thought about his needs first and with compassion.

A week later my husband decided that he did not need to pursue divorce, and is committed to our relationship again. My insatiable need to be right, stubbornness, and not truly thinking of others first was not following Master’s arrangements. At one point I asked Master, “What are your arrangements?” I then understood that Master supports marriage, and my problems had nothing to do with my marriage, they had to do with me. I did not trust Master’s arrangements in part because I did not know how. I am learning to get out of the way, and let things happen naturally. This sounds almost silly, because it is so simple. I have contemplated the pain family members go through because I could not get past a cultivation test. My surroundings mirror my shortcomings. I appreciate my family, friends, and fellow practitioners who continue to play their part with commitment while I cultivate.

My human need for protection and my human fear of being left alone (which was a gut- wrenching terror), brought up jealousy which then distorted my interactions with others. These habits of interacting were ingrained in me to the point that I could not see that they were not me. Over time I wheedled away and cultivated my way through layer after layer until I was able to let them go. Such strong attachments… attachments I did not want, but could not let go of because they were detrimental to my survival.

I watched another Dafa disciple, who had what I considered a difficult spouse, learn to temper her will until there was no longer any friction in her marriage. She kept telling me in the big scheme of things it really doesn’t matter. I had heard that before in my dream. Now, when I have unharmonious interactions with my spouse I ask, “What is up with me?” I usually can locate an uneasiness or unrighteous thought. When I realize that I am having unrighteous thoughts I recite Lunyu. Maybe it is just me, but I recite Lunyu often.

I have continued studying the Fa, sending forth righteous thoughts, and clarifying the truth during the difficult times. There were times I thought I had no business spreading the Fa with the thoughts I was having, but I never let that stop me because I knew in my heart that those thoughts were not really me. Now I have great clarity of thought and I am able to do my Fa work with greater efficiency. I write the evil perpetrators at the labor camps in China. I could not have done that in the past. I think that perpetration happens to the vulnerable, and I am no longer that.

I received an e-mail from a practitioner in another state before I started this process and he asked if I had a light heart. At that time my heart region felt like a lead weight. Now I can truthfully say yes, I have a light heart. “Buddha’s light shines everywhere, propriety and righteousness harmonize everything.” (Zhuan Falun). I looked up “propriety” in the dictionary and one of the definitions was “true nature.”

Am I home free? NO way. If I do not keep a diligent watch, by reading, sending forth righteous thoughts, and clarifying the truth, I start to slip into unrighteous thoughts.

I came here to clarify the truth with compassion, participate in saving sentient beings, and learn the Fa. And when I don’t measure up I keep going because I know the Fa rectifies all things.

One of Teacher’s poems that I recite over and over is Realms.

Realms

A wicked person is born of jealousy.
Out of selfishness and anger he complains about unfairness towards himself.

A benevolent person always has a heart of compassion.
With no discontentment or hatred he takes hardship as joy.

An enlightened person has no attachments at all.
He quietly observes the people of the world deluded by illusions.

Li Hongzhi (Essentials for Further Advancement)

An enlightened person has no attachment at all.

Thank you. Please point out where I am not in harmony with the Fa.

January 2004

Advertisements