I am a Dafa disciple from Northern Greece. I started cultivation practice 2 years ago. Right now I am studying at university.
In the whole region of Northern Greece, we have 6 disciples, and some activities we have are: truth clarification in public and the Zhen Shan Ren Art Exhibition. I would like to tell you a few words about each one as well as about some experiences I had, during cultivation.
Regarding truth clarification in public, I have observed the following: some people are not only condemning the persecution once they understand the truth about it, but also want to learn about cultivation things and are interested in Falun Gong itself. They ask a variety of questions. Some people are like this. Many people want us to talk to them and explain to them the things in detail and then they look very happy and thank us, with their gratitude coming from the heart and not as a formal response.
One time, karma was bothering me while at home, and sending righteous thoughts really had a great impact on improving my state of mind. After that, however, another chunk of karma came which I started to just passively forbear and I was feeling a little numbed by it, even though it was time to leave and go to clarify the truth. Eventually, I decided to go, and by the time I was at the truth clarification place the karma went away, and I had crystal-clear thinking while clarifying the truth and a good state of mind. As soon as I took action, the karma disappeared.
Regarding the Zhen Shan Ren Art Exhibition, the last time it was organised was in the second biggest city of Greece, and thousands of people learned the truth, were interested in Falun Gong itself and also wrote wonderful comments in the comment book. While talking to people, I felt that many of them were deeply interested in learning the truth about the persecution. It was not just a superficial discussion just to pass some time. And that was the case with the great majority of people, more than 90% I would say.
There were also a couple of people who seemed like they could not accept the paintings and asked if it’s a modern religion or something like that. Most of these kinds of people consider themselves Christians and don’t think it good when they see Buddhas in paintings. They also don't like seeing Angels in paintings that do not belong to Christianity and think that if something has a divine dimension it’s only acceptable to be something of the Orthodox Christian church of Greece. One of them was discussing with me some questions he had regarding Falun Gong for quite a long time, and I answered every question he had, so then he understood, I think, that Falun Gong is good and stopped saying negative things. He had already signed the petition against the persecution before our talk, but initially he had this blockage in his mind regarding the practice of Falun Gong.
Next, I will say about my enlightening to some issues. Through studying the Fa, I enlightened to the fact that the human state of being is just the human state of being and beings at higher levels have neither these elements that make people suffer nor the human body’s material substances. So feelings or other suffering that the human body causes, these human things, are not important at all. On the other hand, there is the main spirit, cultivation, reaching a good state in cultivation, where you are not attracted to external things so much, and broadening one’s wisdom; now I would say that these are important and worth talking about. Through studying Dafa, my thinking was elevated to a higher realm; that’s how I felt, so naturally many things of the human body or ordinary things that I was attached to, to varying degrees, when I had a more shallow understanding in cultivation, seemed petty.
I simply cannot describe how important I have come to understand Fa study is! Doing the exercises as an essential part of our cultivation, gave me the courage and good state to improve in studying. While studying and improving, one can feel confident talking to people and can handle things well. That’s my understanding.
I have also been studying Zhuan Falun in Chinese (with the pin yin pronunciation) for some months and I think because I concentrate my mind and contemplate each phrase I read, as I slowly learn each character or character set that form a word, I study the Fa well, and feel like I am assimilating to Dafa. Of course, I’m not digging into the words, I have to read so slowly because I have to learn each word first from a dictionary. Although I feel I’m assimilating to Dafa while reading in my native language, I think that reading in Chinese also helps me a lot.
Now I will talk about a really special cultivation state I had not long ago. One time I had a really difficult cultivation state due to my fundamental attachments, and these attachments led me astray because at that time I was not regarding studying as important, so I didn’t try to eliminate them when they surfaced and thus fell into a state of mind that was not the calm or wise thinking of a cultivator, it was not a state of mind in line with the Fa and it was without resolve. It was like I had forgotten the Fa –only at that specific time, I had tribulations– and this was really scary. This is actually the grounds that can give attachments the chance to play a guiding role, it’s slacking off. That was a great omission in my cultivation, and according to how I understood it, the old forces immediately saw the omission, and while their grasp was the excuse of wanting to make me break away from my fundamental attachments, in reality they were trying to destroy me, causing great demonic interference, making me lose hope that I can succeed in cultivation, thus almost destroying my cultivation.
It was extremely difficult to cultivate during those days, and every day seemed like a month. I was exhausted and the mental burden and pain it caused was beyond description. But I couldn’t believe that my cultivation had failed, I had to continue.
So I continued cultivation even though it seemed unimaginably hard to me. I continued because I started to read the Fa well once again, I started to exercise diligently and my state of mind correspondingly changed. I gained hope once again, because I started to study Dafa well once again. I have been thinking since then that I should be careful, I should not be reckless ever again, and not give a handle to the old forces. It was something I will not forget my whole life.
My experience coming to this conference was like this: I’m still a student in university; so I don’t get a salary, my parents, who live in another town, support me financially. So I asked them on the telephone if I could spend the money needed for the plane tickets.
As I have sometimes explained to them from the start of my cultivation, what my understanding of the nature of the cultivation I’m doing is, my parents have come to slowly understand and have a good impression of my cultivation. But there were also times that, to my understanding, I needed to dissolve karma, so they were furious at me and I needed to forbear. After enduring and explaining to them, it was fine, every time.
So, in this case, my mother had no problem supporting me financially but my father, who was usually more supportive than my mother, became furious, without a rational reason, and didn’t want to listen. He said, “You’re not going, full stop!” Maybe he thought it was wasting money, but I think this was just the superficial manifestation, so that my cultivation test could comply with ordinary human society.
The next day, thinking about the dignity of Dafa, I wrote an email to him explaining my understanding of cultivation, and that he should be proud of me doing cultivation, that the whole great human culture’s essence is cultivation practice in my view, and that the sages of the past would definitely praise people who in such an environment today full of wicked culture and many more corrupted things, practise cultivation in Dafa. I also said some other things, validating Dafa.
These words of mine were from the heart and it seemed they moved him and triggered his true thoughts, so after he read it, he called me and said, “I read your letter yesterday and I understand. That’s ok, if you decide to go, I will support you.” What a huge change took place in his mind!
That’s all I will say. This is my understanding from my limited level. If you think there is anything inappropriate please point it out kindly to me.
Thank you, Master!
Thank you, dear fellow practitioners!
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