To Take Hardship as Joy

Hello everyone,

My name is Roswitha. I’m from Austria. During the Shen Yun promotional period I worked in a shopping centre selling tickets. Within that environment it was easy to have all kinds of human thoughts and attachments come up.

An 8-year-old kid and his grandparents came to the shopping centre. The grandparents wanted to sit and chat with their friends over coffee. The child felt very bored and complained constantly, so his grandfather reprimanded him severely; he looked uncouth to me. I could feel the child’s pain and it made me depressed. I was also very angry with the old man, how could he be so mean? Wasn’t it so obvious that what they were doing bored the child? How can this old man be so petty?

I realized that my state of mind wasn’t good. I wasn’t friendly to people I saw, not to mention being compassionate whilst promoting Shen Yun. I soon realized that this incident was a revelation to me: I should improve myself. Unfairness towards children in particular often moved me. I witnessed this kind of incident several times before at the truth clarification site, so I needed some time to calm down. I realised I can only see what is happening in front of my eyes, but I do not know what kind of karmic relationship those two lives had. I felt I should believe in Dafa and keep a heart of non-action. I should now concentrate 100% on promoting Shen Yun. I released a strong human thought.

Through this experience I realize that I can feel others, but I shouldn’t be moved. It made me remember master’s poem in “Hong Yin”:

Abiding in the Dao
Present, but the heart elsewhere—
Perfectly reconciled with the world.
Looking, but caring not to see—
Free of delusion and doubt.
Listening, but caring not to hear—
A mind so hard to disturb.
Eating, but caring not to taste—
The palate’s attachments severed.
Doing, but without pursuit—
So constant, abiding in the Dao.
Calm, but without strain of thought—
The truly wondrous can be seen.

I can feel that every moment at the ticket-selling site is a gift from master. I realize from the Fa that all of the universe’s beings are watching Dafa disciples, so our behaviour is crucial. Once I went to a shopping centre ticket-selling site, and saw that the big screen for showing the Shen Yun videos had some technical problem. You could tell from the looks on practitioners’ faces that something was wrong. I was standing behind the counter, but even without the big screen I kept smiling and greeting passers-by. I remember Master said: "Even when in your daily life you pass by people so quickly that you don't have a chance to talk to them, you should still leave them with your compassion and kindness. " ("Teaching the Fa at the 2003 Atlanta Fa Conference")

I didn’t blame other practitioners for not remaining kind hearted to everyday people when facing problems. I tried to harmonize quietly and asked Master to strengthen me. The situation soon changed when the problem naturally resolved. I knew I could have done better, and I should have communicated my understanding of the issue with other practitioners, but I didn’t have the courage. I think I should let go of my fear of conflicts. I’m working on it diligently now.

For a period, I went to the Shen Yun ticket-selling site every weekend. One day my father said to me, it’s strange to leave your child at home alone while you frequently go out to sell tickets voluntarily. It made me feel terrible; I was pondering how to explain it to him.

When I went to promote tickets the following weekend, I truly felt happiness. For a moment I saw all the people there looking so pitiful. They walked through the shopping centre in a hurry and were pushed along by their own attachments. Everything was for money, for a better living, they constantly changed their pursuits. In life, they cannot really decide upon anything, and do not know what’s going to happen tomorrow. Among these people, who can say he was free to do whatever he wanted? I said to my father in my mind: “I am standing here, although I don’t get paid I’m the happiest, because I’m doing something that is the sole cause of my being here. I’m doing what my true self wants to do. Everyday people strive to achieve their goals, to fulfil their ego, and liberate themselves. I didn’t come here to have a life of ordinary people, but to assist Master to rectify the Fa, to save sentient beings. Dafa disciples are the happiest!”

I was moved and felt very happy. I remembered what Master said: “Did you know that in order to save you the Buddha once begged for food among everyday people? Today, I once again make the door wide open, and teach this Dafa to save you. I have never felt bitter for the numerous hardships I have suffered. ” (FALUN DAFA ESSENTIALS FOR FURTHER ADVANCEMENT, “True Cultivation”)

At that moment I realized at my level why Buddha did what he did – because Buddha knew that through his suffering he could bring happiness to people. My father didn’t say any more, I didn’t want to explain any more. I knew what I was doing and why I was doing it. I knew what I can do was the best.

Regarding cooperation with each other, I’d like to share with you my experience in looking for a suitable shopping centre as a ticket-selling site. There were two shopping centres that had refused our request to set up a ticket-selling site. After a sharing together, we decided to concentrate on meeting the manager of the shopping centre, regardless of having been refused. As a result, at both places we succeeded.

It was difficult to make an appointment with one shopping centre; we waited for a long time. When we did meet, we suggested a few ways to cooperate, but the manager rejected them all. It seemed he wouldn’t change his mind. The other practitioner and I were not going to waiver either, so I asked for Master’s help. The manager saw the business card of the Dafa Association and asked what Falun Dafa was. The other practitioner introduced Falun Dafa to him; I talked about the persecution in China. I felt his heart was touched. He asked us why we were promoting Shen Yun. We explained that Shen Yun showed ancient Chinese people’s values and virtue. He said to us he had his beliefs too, and he valued virtue. I realized that it was arranged for him to help and support the Shen Yun shows. His eyes said “This is something I have to help with”, and that’s what he did.

The waiting time for another appointment was much shorter, and it wasn’t complicated. But the meeting appeared to reflect how we felt about what we were doing, and how much we wanted to save this life and the sentient beings of this shopping centre. This appointment went smoothly, as if his knowing side understood the value of Shen Yun and wanted to do the right thing. For me it was like a test to see whether we dare to meet him and speak to him.

I ran into another test after the Shen Yun show, and it touched my fundamental attachment, which was also the reason why I started cultivating. I wanted to leave this human world; it’s full of suffering. In other words, I pursue so-called harmony and happiness to return to my homeland, because there’s no suffering there and people would understand me. I was by myself, alone, when I started cultivating. Now I have a family, house, garden and many friends. My parents, siblings and I are closely linked. My life here is seemingly satisfying, and I feel OK with my life to a certain extent. Maybe it’s also a form of test. To see whether I can take these things lightly.

When I once again passed this test, I wrote down my vow. It’s like my previous vow was written down again and signed. I put it in my wallet and keep it with me to remind me of who I am and why I am here. It was very meaningful to write down the vow. Through this process, I could feel many sorrowful regrets and that Master is always very close to me.

Finally I’d like to end with a poem from Hong Yin II:

Righteous Thoughts and Righteous Actions
A Great Enlightened One fears no hardship
Having forged an adamantine will
Free of attachment to living or dying
He walks the path of Fa-rectification confident and poised

Thank you, respected master! Thank you, fellow practitioners!

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