One Body

I recently had the opportunity to go to Korea to participate in some Hong Fa (informing people about Falun Dafa and the persecution) activities during the time that the World Cup was being played. While I was trying to decide whether to go or not, many practitioners were deciding whether or not to go to Europe or Russia to coincide with the Chinese President's trip. I knew the importance of the trip to Europe but the trip to Korea seemed important to me as well. Many newspapers at the time were writing articles about how many people from Mainland China would be attending the World Cup. One paper estimated that 40,000 Chinese people from the mainland would attend the games. To me the importance of this trip couldn't be clearer. It was an opportunity to reach thousands of Chinese people in person and at the same time the media from around the world was there to cover the World Cup games. A fellow practitioner of mine who initially told me about the trip to Korea explained to me that the practitioners in Korea had very little experience with international media and that English speakers would be of great help to Korean practitioners. When I asked practitioners why they weren't going to Korea I heard many different reasons why they weren't going. While all their reasons appeared to be good, I couldn't help feeling that there was a lot of work that needed to be done there. I tried to take the overall situation of Fa-rectification into consideration instead of thinking about what I wanted to do. I knew there were already a lot of Western practitioners going to Europe and I knew how few Westerners were going to Korea. Taking these into consideration, I decided that I would be more helpful in Korea than Europe. I felt as if many practitioners were so focused on the trip to Europe that they couldn't see the importance of other events that were going on at the same time. While I understood the importance of the Europe trip, I didn't think it was good to have every practitioner stop what they were doing to go there. Master has warned us in his article "Take the Middle Way" in Essentials for Further Advancement not to "go from one extreme to the other." I think we should heed Master's warning and not become too focused on one event that is going on, but instead try and take the whole situation of Fa-rectification into consideration.

Once I finally decided that I was going to Korea the interference began. I began having many fearful thoughts about being in a place full of Chinese people and being all alone. I am not sure why I was having these thoughts but they were there all the same. I resisted these thoughts immediately when they surfaced but they didn't die out so easily. They repeatedly surfaced in mind until the day I set foot in Korea. I came to understand that the old forces were testing me to see if I could be stopped from going. The true test came for me the day I was leaving for Korea. Since I work as a resident in a hospital I had to go to the hospital that afternoon to see patients. I planned to finish work a little early that day so that I could finish getting ready for my trip and do some last minute odds and ends before I was going to get picked up to leave for the airport. However, that day three of my fellow co-workers didn't show up for work. At one point it seemed as if I would be the only person working that afternoon and on top of that over 25 people showed up for my clinic, which never happens. At first I started to panic a little because I knew that if I had to see all these patients myself I would never be ready in time, but then I realized I have to stay calm and unmoved and have faith that this would work out okay. As I started to see the patients one of my fellow doctors appeared and apologized for being late. However, even with the both of us working I wasn't sure that we would finish in time. I still tried to remain calm and reminded myself that things would work out if I remained unmoved. After a while another physician finally showed up and helped us finish up all our work. As it turned out we finished on time and everything worked out okay. It was another reminder or hint that I must stay calm and not be moved.

This, however, was only the beginning of my tribulations for that day. When I got home, out of nowhere, I started to get a severe headache like I have never experienced before. It was so severe that I felt extremely nauseous and weak. I felt like I couldn't move and if I attempted to I would throw up instantly. I still had to finish getting ready so I forced myself to not allow it to stop me. When the practitioner I was going with arrived to pick me up my headache got even worse. It seemed as if the pain was increasing the closer and closer I got to the airport. By the time I got to the airport my headache was so bad that I could barely walk. I knew that this was interference and I was determined to not let it stop me. I used all my strength to make it to the check-in window.

At the check in window another tribulation was waiting for me. When we checked in the woman behind the counter told me that my ticket was very strange. When I asked her why she told me that, she said although it says on my information that I have a ticket to go to Korea on her screen it shows that I only have a ticket for coming back from Korea. The ticket that I had for going there had been cancelled and she didn't know by who or why. This was very strange since I had just received in the mail a confirmation for my tickets from my travel agency. The woman told me that the only thing that she could do for me was to have me try and go standby, but in the back of my mind I was thinking, "Standby? I had a hard time getting this ticket in advance, since all the airlines were sold out of tickets to Korea because of the World Cup. What realistic chances did I have going standby?" I also knew that the plane that I was trying to get on was sold out. Although I tried to explain to her my situation she repeated that the best she could do for me was have me fly standby. At that time the practitioner I was with and I knew what we had to do. We went to sit down near by and we did the Fa Zheng Nian meditation continuously while we waited. When we came back at the time we were told to we were told that there was one open seat left on the flight and I would be able to get on this flight. From this I was able to see the power of righteous thoughts firsthand. It was not a coincidence that one seat happened to open on a booked flight, nor was it a coincidence that somehow my flight to Korea was cancelled. Once I finally got onto the plane and sat down my headache that had been bothering me so much before finally went away.

After a long flight we arrived in Seoul, where a Korean practitioner was there waiting to pick us up. From there we went to a practice site in Seoul where I met a lot of Korean practitioners. At the practice site we had a meeting about how we were going to handle international media for the soccer game coming up between China and Turkey. When we asked the practitioners there if they had any contacts already they told us that they had only local contacts and that no real work had been done on foreign media yet. After leaving that meeting I felt that the practitioners there were not very optimistic about having the international media cover any of our events. Yet after discussing the situation with the practitioner I came to Korea with, we both felt that things were going to just work out and that we should not be too worried about it. Form there we went to an assistants' meeting that was taking place in another area of Seoul. When I arrived there I immediately sensed how different their cultivation environment was from my own in the United States. When I arrived the meeting had already begun. To my surprise they were all sitting on a wooden floor in a big circle around the edge of the room. Most of them were sitting in full lotus and they were all very quietly listening to one of the practitioners read Master's lecture in Boston. I could sense the serenity and seriousness in the room. It was a feeling of respect for the seriousness of the Fa and the seriousness of Dafa itself. This was a feeling that I have felt has been missing from our meetings in the United States. Normally when I go to a meeting in the United States some practitioners are seating in chairs, some are sitting on the floor while others are standing around. Very often people are talking while other people are talking and the whole environment is very casual. While I don't believe one environment is necessarily better than the other, the difference between the two was striking.

At the meeting the topic of what was going to be done for the upcoming game between China and Turkey was being discussed. They were trying to decide on the best means to reach the Chinese people that had travelled to Seoul to see the soccer game. At that meeting I learned that any event we would have was restricted to being 1 kilometre away from the stadium. Anything closer than that would not be allowed and that included passing out flyers. I shared with the practitioners there one of my own experiences of clarifying the truth. I told them about the events New York recently had for World Falun Dafa Day. I shared with them how we did our best to clarify the truth to Chinese people with wisdom. I told them how we decided to have a parade and have many practitioners dress up in different costumes. We had some practitioners dress as heavenly beauties, some dressed up to perform a lion's dance and some dressed up in ancient Tang Dynasty dresses. I told them the powerful effect this had on the people of Chinatown and how we shouldn't limit ourselves when we are clarifying the truth. We went on to discuss how many practitioners think that we are limited to only passing out flyers to clarify the truth to people. We agreed that this couldn't be further from the truth. There are so many ways that we can clarify the truth but we have to stop letting our notions limit us. We are Dafa practitioners and when someone puts in front of us an obstacle to clarifying the truth to people we must use our wisdom to go right around it. The practitioners there thanked me for sharing my experience and then they discussed how they were planning to carry out their activities for that day.

The next day I travelled to the hometown of the practitioner I came to Korea with. There I met many Korean practitioners and I had some time to share some understandings and experiences with them. From spending time with them I could see how diligent some of the practitioners there were. One practice site there meets every morning at 4:45AM to do the exercises and afterwards they spend time reading together. They also get together every Sunday for group reading and discussion. One day a month they all come together and they spend the whole day reading Zhuan Falun cover to cover. Their diligence was very inspiring to me and I realized how much harder I needed to work. I was also very impressed with how well they understood the Fa and how deep some of their understandings were.

They also shared with me some of the difficulties they had been having recently in Korea. They told me about how they have been having a hard time coming together and working as one body. They explained to me that Chinese Korean practitioners and Korean practitioners often disagreed with one another about how things should be done and how they were often at odds with one another. Listening to them tell me about there situation I couldn't help thinking about the situation back home in America. I believe many practitioners in the United States have recognized the difficulty we sometimes have trying to get the Western practitioners and the Chinese practitioners to work together as one body. It became clear to me that this was an arrangement made by the old forces to prevent Dafa practitioners from being able to come together as one body during Fa-rectification. Actually this is one of the things that the old forces fear the most, because they know that if we come together and truly work together as one body there is nothing that we cannot achieve. The division that exists between Dafa practitioners all over the world is seriously interfering with us and Fa-rectification as a whole. Master explained this clearly to us at the Boston conference. We must come together and break through this arrangement.

From there the practitioner I was travelling with and I decided to go back to Seoul to try and see if we could get contacts for international media so that they would attend our event prior to the upcoming soccer game in Seoul. A media centre had been set up in Seoul where all the media for the World Cup was stationed. We felt that this would be the best place to try. We both had the same feeling inside as we headed there. We both just felt that it was going to work out. It didn't matter that we had never done something like this before, that we knew nobody there in the media nor had any idea what exactly we were going to do there. We just felt we would go and things would come together. As Master says in Zhuan Falun, "Cultivation depends on one's own efforts, while the transformation of gong is done by one's master." After arriving there we first had to find out the best place to meet reporters. When we finally found the best place we went up to different people and genuinely asked them what the best way was to get in contact with reporters from international media. One thing after another went our way. It wasn't long before we were inside the building and we had someone helping us find all the contacts we were looking for. By the end of the day we had made contacts for the two largest media organizations in the world and it was all done with such ease. It was really amazing one door after another was open for us almost effortlessly. [..]

The day of the soccer game between China and Turkey finally arrived. The Korean practitioners decided to have an event next to a road that all the cars and buses had to pass to get to the stadium. It was an amazing site with over 250 practitioners dressed in yellow holding Falun Dafa fans in their hands that some practitioners from Korea had made. One bus after another filled with Chinese people passed by. They all looked amazed as they saw us standing there waving to them. Many practitioners were also very busy handing out Dafa fans that had the Falun Emblem on one side and truth clarifying material on the other. They passed out over 20,000 fans that day. Just as we had planned, several international media people came to cover the event. We had two camera crews one from AP and one from Reuters and two journalists who wrote for them as well. The event went better than I could have possibly imagined. After the event I went to the stadium where I saw one of the most amazing sights I had ever seen. I saw Falun Dafa fans being carried by thousands of people. I saw thousands of Chinese people witnessing this first hand. Everywhere you looked there was a Falun Dafa fan. You couldn't escape it even if you wanted to. The Chinese officials must have been shocked by what they saw. Even in the stadium people were fanning themselves with Dafa fans. The site was amazing and it almost brought me to tears. The Korean practitioners used their wisdom that day to reach thousands of Chinese people.

The next day the Korean practitioners decided to go to the airport to try and reach more Chinese people before they went back to Mainland China. At the airport I was reminded again how powerful it is for Chinese people to see westerners who practise Falun Dafa. At the airport there were thousands of Chinese people waiting to board their planes. Walking around in the airport I saw so many Chinese people shocked to see me wearing a shirt that says I support Falun Dafa. One lady even asked to take a picture of me wearing my Falun Dafa shirt so that she could show it to people when she went back to China. That day I also learned that sometimes just walking around and presenting Dafa in a good light can make a very powerful impression on somebody. I also battled with my attachment to zealotry that day. I noticed that as soon as I saw a Chinese person a feeling of anxiousness and excitement would come over me. There is a Chinese person over there I have to run up to him and clarify the truth to him! This feeling was even quite strong and I had a hard time not being moved by it. I also saw this attachment in other practitioners. With a heart that is so moved how can I expect to really do a good job in clarifying the truth to anyone? How will I be able to speak to that person from my heart? I think the attachment of zealotry is something we must all look inside ourselves to see if we have, because it is something that can be used against us very easily.

During my time in Korea I really spent a lot of time talking and reading Zhuan Falun with the practitioner I was travelling with. We talked a lot about our cultivation and our understandings of the Fa [principles of Falun Dafa]. We tried our best to help each other elevate to higher levels and overcome tribulations and attachments that have been keeping us down. We spoke openly and honestly with each other. I think we both grew a lot because of this. From this experience I learned how important it is that fellow practitioners help each other so that we can all grow together as one body.

The trip felt as if it was as long as a lifetime. Looking back I can see how much I grew from it. I want to thank Master for the opportunity to stand for Dafa.

Presented at the Washington, D.C. Fa-conference, 2002

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