PureInsight | December 5, 2005
A group of practitioners, including myself, came to New York City to clarify the truth in Manhattan. We all live together. In order to guarantee we have enough time for Fa study, sending forth righteous thoughts and clarifying the truth, we all eat together. Sometimes we take turns cooking, but oftentimes a few practitioners volunteer to take up this duty.
Living among us is a practitioner who is over seventy. She is not as strong as the younger practitioners. She is nevertheless very strict with herself. No matter how early we leave in the morning, she always cooks the breakfast for us, and she goes out with us to hand out truth clarification materials. Throughout the day, she clarifies the truth with us at the torture exhibit. In the evening, she volunteers to prepare dinner for us, and she will clean the kitchen afterwards if no one else does it. She is thin and sometimes she is unsteady when she walks, but she takes the time and effort to take care of everything that other practitioners overlook or are unwilling to do.
One day, a practitioner left some food in a bowl and forgot to cover it up. In the evening when we returned, we saw cockroaches crawling inside, so no one wanted to touch the food. No one threw it away, and no one covered it up, although we all agreed that the food should be thrown away.
Two days later, the practitioners looked at food in that bowl and complained, "Whoever didn't cover up the bowl was creating karma by wasting food." The elderly practitioner said, "Well, so the cockroach crawled over it. No big deal, I'll eat it." We grew silent.
Sometimes, a few practitioners tell her that she should cook certain food and not some other types of food. She never gets angry or annoyed, and she simply goes on cooking for us. Once, I asked, "Have you ever thought about stopping to cook for us?" She answered, "So many people are waiting to eat, how can I not cook?"
I was moved by her calmness and compassion. She is making sacrifices for Dafa, our Master and our fellow practitioners.
It has been over one year since we first came to Manhattan to validate the Fa and clarify the truth. At the beginning, practitioners were so enthusiastic and active that some practitioners even cried when they couldn't get the visa. During the period we stayed in Manhattan, we encountered numerous car accidents involving both private and rental vehicles. One practitioner got four tickets in one day, each one carrying more than $100 in fines. However, nothing could stop our practitioners, and they came to Manhattan as if nothing had happened. In face of the financial and mental pressure, we persevered and prevailed.
Gradually, though, practitioners' enthusiasm waned. It almost seems as if they are forgetting about Manhattan.
At this time, some practitioners decided to come to Manhattan, but we didn't have any cars to pick them up. Later on, we had a car but didn't have a driver, so picking up practitioners with our own car(s) was out of the question. This situation lasted for almost one year. One practitioner bought a twelve-seat van, specifically to be used for validating the Fa in Manhattan, and we don't have access to any other vehicle in Manhattan aside from the van. Shortage of manpower posed a major problem in our efforts to validate the Fa in Manhattan. In order to get one practitioner to come to Manhattan to clarify the truth, we usually need to get four or five practitioners to help him, and it's even hard for us to find drivers.
About one week ago, two female practitioners came to Manhattan. One practitioner's husband just underwent amputation, and she retired early to take care of him at home. Her husband always had some misunderstandings about Dafa, and he created a lot of troubles for her in terms of her Fa-validating work. The other practitioner had taken tine off from work several times in order to come to Manhattan, yet she wasn't able to make it because we had done a poor job coordinating. I thought she would never come. When they heard that there was only one Canadian practitioner left in Manhattan to clarify the truth, they came on their own initiative, out of a sense of responsibility as Dafa disciples. Their appearance both surprised and inspired me.
One week flew by in the blink of an eye. They had to go back to Canada, and I also needed to visit my daughter. The vehicle we had originally arranged to take us back did not show up so we decided to take the bus home. At the last moment, though, one practitioner learned about our situation, and she drove to Manhattan from Toronto overnight to pick us up.
She is a young practitioner. After she finished a whole day of work, she drove more than ten hours without any break, only to pick us up and take us to Toronto! It's a tough job even for a male practitioner. After she came to Manhattan, she slept for only one hour before rushing to the anti-torture exhibition site to clarify the truth. The next day, after we participated in the parade to support 5.5 million people who quit the Chinese Communist Party, one practitioner asked us help bring some things back to Toronto from Manhattan. The pickup location was a place where we often get lost. After we finished talking to the owner of those things, it was late at night and quite dark. I remind her that we had previously gotten lost over there. This young practitioner answered, "I know, but we have to go." I was again moved. I told myself, "Don't worry too much. Just maintain righteous thoughts."
Everything went well. We were able to pick up the things without too much problem. When we set off for Toronto, it was past 9 p.m. and it was a little difficult for us to find the highway back to Canada. We had to ask for directions. I said to one practitioner, "It would be great if we could find a taxi driver to ask for directions." Before I finished my sentence, a taxi stopped in front of us. Because the route was kind of complicated, the taxi driver led us all the way to the correct highway entrance before leaving us.
Over the last period of time, I had experienced some tests; I saw and realized some problems in our cultivation as a whole body. I started to become despondent and was not willing to say anything more about the current situation, and I stopped going to meetings arranged for coordinators. I told myself, "Just try your best to cultivate yourself and do whatever you can!"
As I was arranging for the trip to Manhattan for the upcoming weekend, our van was not available, and again we faced the embarrassing situation of not being able to drive practitioners who had signed up for the trip to Manhattan. While I was anxious and worried, one practitioner offered his van for our use. I was pleasantly surprised and touched, and I suddenly realized that Teacher was encouraging me because he knew that I was tired and despondent. He arranged for another practitioner and a predestined non-practitioner to help me out.
Fa-rectification is not over yet, and we all need to keep moving forward or we will fall behind. Teacher doesn't want to give up on a single disciple. Here, I would like to thank fellow practitioners for their encouragement and support, and I also would like to thank the non-practitioner whom I had never met before [whom helped us by giving directions]. Thank you, Teacher. I will keep up.