Getting Rid of Human Notions and Attachments While Completing a Master's Degree

A Falun Dafa Practitioner from Taiwan

PureInsight | December 24, 2006

[PureInsight Net]  In
1999, I started practicing Falun Gong and was a senior in
college.  I was lazy then and did not know the importance of
studying the Fa. For more than six years, I cultivated some of the time
and stopped some of the time and, later, I could not even remember what
was said in Zhuan Falun
except that one should not cultivate in two schools. Whenever others
asked to me to learn another qigong, I said, "Sorry, I practice Falun
Gong, and I cannot mix that with another school." Sometimes, someone
would say that he had never seen me practice, so why didn't I change to
something else. No matter what other people said, I always considered
myself a Falun Gong practitioner and thought, "One day, when I have
time, I'll practice it diligently."

By October, 2005, I started practicing diligently, partly because I was
getting worse physically, and I could not finish my thesis for my
master's degree, which I had tried to do for many years. I was hoping
that I could regain my health and finish my thesis. After studying the
Fa, I realized that Falun Gong was not just for getting rid of
illnesses and maintaining good health, it was a true cultivation
system, I made up my mind to cultivate solidly. I understood the
importance of studying the Fa then and studied the Fa all the time
except the hours when I had to go to work. I was so engrossed in the
deep meanings of Dafa that I read two or three lectures outside of
Taiwan every day, sometimes four or five.  I absorbed everything,
as the dry ground takes in the rain after a drought.  The more I
read, the more energetic I became. I was cleansed, purified, and
assimilated to the Fa. Sometimes, after I finished reading the lectures
in the early morning, it was time to go to practice. Within a short
week of doing this, my herniated lumbar disc and the injury in my ankle
were both gone. The secretary in the office where I worked told me that
it took six months for her ankle to heal and it was not totally healed
then and I should watch myself carefully. Later on, when she learned
that my ankle healed within one week, she, too, felt that was

In addition to the physical benefit I just mentioned, I was also filled
with a happiness that I had never felt in my entire life. I not only
clearly understood the meaning of a being a human being but also felt
that I was filled with energy and surrounded with Teacher's compassion
during my Fa study. I was cleansed and purified in both body and mind.

After studying the Fa, I realized that Fa rectification had advanced so
fast and I was so far behind.  I was anxious and did not know how
to make up for my loss. However, not long after that, I could feel that
everything was so tightly arranged by Teacher and was delighted that
Teacher really did think of me highly. In order for me to catch up I
was given more and harder tests. My tribulations came one after the
other: first was karma release, then the demon of lust, and then
various xinxing tests.  Among all my tribulations, the hardest one was my thesis.

At the beginning of practicing Falun Gong, I had the mentality of
zealotry. Since I had already obtained the Fa, I felt that I could let
go of everything in this secular world and no longer need a degree.
During a discussion with my adviser one time, I told her that I
intended to give up my advanced studies and would not write a thesis.
She was so angry that she left immediately.

After seeing her reaction, I asked myself, "Is this the right thing to
do? Whether I want to write a thesis or not, isn't that also part of my
emotional attachments? Am I not dealing with my tribulation with human
notions? What if my family members ask me, "Why don't you pursue your
degree?"  If I tell them it is because I practice Falun Dafa, and
I have seen enough of this secular world, my family will misunderstand
that practicing Falun Gong makes me behave this way. And how could I
validate Dafa to others, first to my parents, then to my adviser? Am I
not damaging the reputation of Dafa? Furthermore, if I really want to
go against my parents and adviser, why couldn't I finish my thesis
first? Teacher said in Zhuan Falun,
"All of our practitioners should be sure to never behave very
abnormally among everyday people. If you play a bad role among everyday
people, others may say: 'Why do those people who learn Falun Dafa all
behave this way?' It is the same as undermining the reputation of Falun
Dafa, so make sure to pay attention to this issue. In other matters and
in the course of cultivation practice, one should be sure to not
develop the attachment of zealotry-this mentality can be very easily
taken advantage of by demons."

"If  I give up my degree that would damage Dafa, so I must finish
my degree first.  Another thought: if I can finish my degree,
isn't that also truth clarification? I could tell my parents and
adviser in a dignified manner that I could finish my thesis only
because I practice Falun Gong.  And, at the same time I could
write about my experience in the acknowledgment of the thesis. Isn't
that the best way to let people know about the goodness of Dafa when
they read my thesis."  I made up my mind to complete my degree
based on that notion.

I also planned to pass the exam for a doctoral program. I had a serious
disagreement with my professor because of that, but I still decided to
take the exam. I tried several time to register automatically, but
failed. I also thought about asking the person who was in charge of the

The more I thought about that, the more I was puzzled.  Why should
trying to be a doctoral candidate be so much trouble? Was there some
attachment I needed to find? Sure enough, when I looked within there
were indeed many attachments.

First, I was trying to prove my professor wrong. She did not want me to apply, and I had to prove that I could.

Besides that, I had attachments about time and consummation. I was
afraid that if I served in the military, then I would not have time to
do the three things well, to cultivate well, and could not reach

Furthermore, I basically took advantage of Dafa. From the superficial
level, I wanted to continue my advanced study and thus validate Dafa
but, deep down inside, I was doing it for myself and was totally
selfish, no different from the old forces.

I realized why I could not pay my registration fee automatically.
Teacher was trying to enlighten me. If I went and served in the
military, Teacher would also arrange the tribulations and the sentient
beings there for me to save in the military. The path of every Dafa
disciple has been arranged by Teacher and so how could I insist on
doing it my way? I needed to follow Teacher's arrangement. When I let
go of my attachments to time, consummation, and my doctoral degree, my
heart immediately became calm and peaceful.

In June, I passed my oral exam abut found out that my thesis needed
quite a bit of work. Meanwhile, I had many personal affairs to tend to,
plus studying the Fa, and clarifying the truth, and so on. Therefore, I
was very receptive when I heard from the assistant that I could turn in
my grades and get other administrative procedures done first and then
revise my thesis later until I was about to receive my diploma. As a
result, I did not actively work on revising my thesis and I informed my
professor through the email.  On the surface I wanted my thesis to
be as good as it should, but in my heart I wanted to do it slowly or
not do it at all.  I was thinking that the Fa rectified the human
world, and it really did not matter that my thesis was not completed.
Because my notion was not righteous, I almost got kicked out of the
university. Finally, I had to write a guarantee letter and promise
that, even though I had turned in my transcript, I would continue to
revise my thesis until my adviser was satisfied before I  received
my diploma. My adviser then agreed to sign my transcript.

Two weeks later, I had a discussion with my adviser about my thesis and
she wanted me to revise here and there. I was turned off and did not
want to revise it.  I almost wanted to destroy my guarantee letter
and I believed that the letter would not impose any legal
consequence.  My adviser threw a book on the desk hard and asked
me, " What are you going to do with your promise?" At that moment, I
remembered that Dafa requires us to cultivate truthfulness, compassion,
and forbearance and so how could I not keep my promise?  I smiled
and replied, "I will continue to revise it." With that smile, I saw my
adviser change her attitude.  After that discussion, my classmates
said that I was more patient and thus was able to hold a long
discussion with my adviser. I told her that I was a Falun Gong
practitioner and we cultivated truthfulness, compassion, and
forbearance.  The very next night, when I meditated, I was able to
be in deep tranquility and felt delightful, as if I were sitting in an

Looking back on the process of revising my thesis, I found that my
biggest attachment was not wanting to admit my mistakes. I had studied
philosophy before and was very fond of debate. I was arrogant and felt
superior. I was not willing to admit my mistakes to my adviser. Every
time when conflict arose, I admitted that I was wrong but inside I
complained and thought that my adviser was also wrong. I rarely looked
within unconditionally. I learned later, after a lot of Fa study, to
give up my attachments and did not argue with my advisor again. 
Whenever she told me to make changes, I did so accordingly. With that
kind of attitude, I slowly experienced that wonderful feeling of
forbearance that nothing could move my heart and I was also more
considerate of others.

Finally, I got my diploma, and that was a year after I came back to my
path of cultivation. My adviser, my parents, my relatives, and
classmates also had a positive attitude toward Dafa during the time I
revised my thesis to the time I received my degree.  I thought
about the entire time period when I had to revise my thesis and get rid
of my attachments, and that was indeed the path of my cultivation. I
feel deeply that our every notion and every act in our daily lives are
ways to validate Dafa and clarify the truth. Our actions are far more
convincing than our words. In daily life, if we can have righteous
thoughts and righteous actions, our every word and action can clarify
the truth. That is also what Teacher said in Zhuan Falun: "The Buddha-light illuminates everywhere and rectifies all abnormalities."

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