PureInsight | March 8, 2009
Experience sharing at the 2009 Los Angeles Fa Conference
[PureInsight.org] Greetings, Master! Greetings, fellow practitioners!
I obtained the Fa in 2006, which was a simple but miraculous experience. My wife told me about Dafa a long time ago, however, I was always against the idea of practicing Falun Gong in my heart. During the Los Angeles experience sharing conference in 2006, my wife dragged me to the conference room. At around 1pm, our great Master came into the conference room. While all the practitioners stood up and applauded, I could not help standing up and also applauding. During the next couple of hours, Master gave a lecture on the situation in Los Angeles and answered practitioners’ questions. At that time, my thoughts were not so good. I wanted to find out how good Master could be. As a result, Master seriously and compassionately answered the questions, with lots of caring towards practitioners, which touched me deeply, especially that no matter what kind of question he encountered, Master always gave immediate and clear answers that pointed out fundamental problems. I was very amazed and also felt the greatness of Master. By the end of the conference, I already determined my future path, which was to be a Dafa disciple.
Three years have passed, and with Master’s teachings and the help of fellow practitioners, I have gained deeper understandings toward Dafa. Especially, after the establishment of Diving Performing Arts (DPA), I felt that Teacher is saving people using the most perfect approach. Teacher mentioned multiple times in his lectures about the importance of Divine Performing Arts. For example, he said, “Do you realize, when those who have watched the Gala walk out of the theatre, any and all bad thoughts they had have been dissolved? All of their bad thoughts are gone. (Applause) That's why people found it so powerful” (Teaching the Fa in the City of Los Angeles). Also, Master said, “In this dimension it was young people who were performing, while in other dimensions, many of my Law Bodies and many divine beings were doing so. (Applause) The strength of the impact on people, as with the changes it caused in them, were very similar to what happened back when I personally taught the Fa early on. (Applause) So it has effected tremendous changes in people” (Fa Teaching at the 2007 New York Fa Conference). Since Divine Performing Arts is so important, and it is handled by Master himself, practitioners of course need to help Teacher in Fa rectification. Also, the shows get larger and larger in scale each year and Teacher has higher and higher requirements for practitioners. This is also a great opportunity for practitioners to improve their xinxing. Next, I’d like to share my experience of getting rid of attachments during the promotion of Divine Performing Arts.
This year there were eight DPA shows in Los Angeles. It was a hard task to sell the tickets, especially when two weeks before the show started we had sold only one third of the tickets. Because we had good ticket sales in three Costco stores, the headquarters of Costco agreed to add two more stores for us to sell tickets in. I was assigned to a new Costco store to dress up as an “emperor.”
At the beginning of the first day, I was very confident and decided to do a good job so that other practitioners would be impressed by our team. However, five hours passed and we only sold 8 tickets, which was a pity. This fact shocked me and also made me calm down to look for my own problems. Master mentioned in Zhuan Falun, Lecture Six, about “The Mentality of Showing Off”: “This mentality of showing off can manifest in any situation; it can also surface when doing a good deed. In order to gain fame, personal profit, and a little benefit, some people often brag about themselves and show off: ‘I’m very capable and a winner.’” Isn’t this exactly what my thoughts were at the beginning? Although I was doing a good deed to promote DPA, this kind of attachment still carelessly got mixed in. During the lunch break, I carefully sent forth righteous thoughts and thanked Master for helping me to get rid of this attachment in time. Things got better in the afternoon; with the continuous efforts of the whole team, we sold another 25 tickets. So we sold 31 tickets during the whole day.
With the lesson of the first day, I became very careful on the second day. During the first five hours, we sold 27 tickets and the trend looked good. Everyone was happy. Before the lunch break, I told other practitioners that: “If this trend continues, it is likely that we can sell 50 tickets today,” and everyone agreed with me. However, in the afternoon ,things turned terrible. Although we tried very hard to talk with customers one by one, very few people bought tickets. We tried all kinds of means and took turns to send forth righteous thoughts. However, it did not work. We only sold 8 tickets during the whole afternoon, but 4 tickets were returned. So, the result of the whole day came to mirror that of the first day.
After getting back home, I was very sad and discussed this experience with my wife. We immediately caught an obvious attachment of zealotry. Because we did well in the morning, we became happy and proud, and the evil found our loophole. With more in-depth discussion, we found another attachment which was not so obvious. While working at Costco, I paid a lot of attention to the number of tickets we sold. I constantly counted the total number of tickets we sold, even set a goal on the number to reach for that day. Actually, I was selling tickets with pursuit. Cultivation should be that we gain without pursuit, but I was too attached to the number, as if I came to sell tickets for this number and forgot that my true mission was to save sentient beings. Master mentioned that: “Cultivation depends on one’s own efforts, while the transformation of gong is done by one’s master” (Lecture One, “Why Doesn’t Your Gong Increase with Your Practice?”, Zhuan Falun). Once my xinxing reaches the requirement, Master’s Fashen and other gods will help me. After realizing this, I immediately saw the light, and at the same time realized more deeply that cultivation is very serious. Every thought of mine will bring different results, and will even affect the whole team.
The second morning, before Costco was open, I shared with other practitioners in our team about my enlightenments from the night before. To my surprise, almost everyone realized this; we truly had tacit understanding. That day, we promised each other that no one would count the total number of tickets we sold until the store closed. That day, tickets were sold quickly, and the record for ticket sales filled page after page. Seeing the progress, we encouraged each other and reminded each other not to count the total number. At the end of the day, we found that we had sold a total of 66 tickets, which was even more than the total number we sold during the first two days. This was the encouragement of Master towards us, and towards our getting rid of attachments.
During the rest of days, no matter if we sold more or less, we were not attached to the numbers any more. Even when one day, we only sold 16 tickets, we were not disappointed. Instead, we looked inward. I realized that we were just spreading the seeds, and at the same time, setting up an energy field. Master said in “Teaching and Explaining the Fa at the Metropolitan New York Fa Conference”: “I was talking about it from the angle of having compassion and saving sentient beings. The key is to stress doing well with what you should do during the process, and the result will be whatever it will be.” One day I saw the feedback from hotline team. They mentioned that many people called the hotline after receiving flyers in Costco. Some of them were not satisfied that we only sold two kinds of prices at Costco, so they called the hotline to buy tickets with higher prices. So, nothing we did was wasted. When everyone participated and harmonized with each other, then the one-body power would manifest.
During this period of time, I also got rid of another strong attachment. Sometimes I heard about the ticket sales situation in other Costco stores. When other groups did better than us, I always said “good,” however in my heart, I thought that it was not so impressive, and was just because that store has more traffic. Then one day we had group sharing and I found out that we still had serious difficulty with ticket sales, and I suddenly realized that I had very bad thoughts. Did I really want the other group to do better or not? Why did I feel upset when seeing other people doing better than me? Master mentioned in Lecture Seven, in the section “Jealousy,” that, “If in the course of cultivation practice jealousy is not given up, one will not attain Right Fruit—absolutely not.” Master had already told us about the consequence of jealousy, but I still do not get enlightened. While other people were trying their best, my jealousy caused negative effects and pulled them back. Isn’t this what the old force wanted to see? After I sent forth righteous thoughts to get rid of jealousy, I found that my heart became more peaceful. After hearing about this kind of news again, I sincerely felt happy for other teams and respected those practitioners who did better than me.
I finished my role as an “emperor” on the day before the show started. During those very short two weeks, I found that my cultivation had made a break though. Because I obtained the Fa late and did not study the Fa well enough, it was very easy for me to be led by ordinary people’s thoughts in ordinary society. During the period of working at Costco, I had to maintain myself in a cultivation state for at least 10 hours per day; every moment, my thoughts had to stay with the Fa, and every moment, I had to keep pure righteous thoughts. It was just like a battlefield between good and evil—every thought of mine would affect the whole battle. I had to face all kinds of ordinary people, face the sometimes-good and sometimes-bad situation. My xinxing was being tested every moment. I especially want to thank the other members of our team. When we were together, there were no complaints or accusations. Even when ticket sales hit the bottom, we were still encouraging each other. A fellow practitioner seized every opportunity to introduce our show to the passing-by customers, even if they only cast a look at us. Through her tireless efforts, she could often bring predestined people to our booth to purchase tickets when ticket sales were really slow, thus giving us tremendous encouragement.
Our sincere and responsible manner also touched others. On the afternoon before Christmas, the store manager came to us and said he had observed us for some time and discovered that we were very professional in what we did, no matter if it’s flyer distribution or explaining to customers. Given that we stood all day from the morning to night, he thanked us for our dedication. I told him it’s because we were aware that we were promoting the best show in the world. Indeed, I was surprised that I could stand for over 10 hours for several consecutive days, which never happened in my life before. It became possible only with Master’s help. Thank Master for providing such a good cultivation environment, which enabled me to continuously get rid of bad attachments. If such opportunities arise in the future, I will surely do better and not disappoint Master’s expectations.
The above is a little bit of my experience in DPA show promotion. If there’s anything inappropriate, please help correct me.
Thanks to Master. Thanks to fellow practitioners.
Chinese translation available at: http://www.zhengjian.org/zj/articles/2009/2/25/58047.html