PureInsight | September 19, 2012
Experience Sharing at the 2011 European Fa Conference
[PureInsight.org] Greetings Master! Greetings fellow practitioners!
I am very honored to be here. To me, a Fa Conference is sacred and very precious, and being able to share with all of you has a very special meaning to me. Long ago in my early cultivation years, I passed a huge obstacle on my cultivation path during my first Fahui. It was that particular Fahui that helped me to take a real step into cultivation. I have been grateful for Fahuis ever since.
As one of the first batch of practitioners in Sweden and Europe who started practicing in 1995, I feel I have a great responsibility. However, I have not always been able to embrace this feeling of responsibility with dignity or happiness. Initially, when I had xinxing tests with my fellow practitioners, I tried to escape from the opportunity, as I was not very clear that the test was meant for my cultivation improvement. Sometimes I could be quite lazy and prone to complacency. If I did not have my fellow practitioners around me, I would not have been able to cope well with my cultivation. Thanks to such a precious environment I was able to continue with my improvement. Today, I would like to share the experience I gained from being a coordinator of the Shen Yun project.
Many years ago, before Shen Yun came to Sweden, I gained some minor experience from working with the Gala both backstage and with promotion in Europe, but some of it was not a positive experience. I had no knowledge in this area at all, so various shortcomings of both myself and other practitioners manifested. It became a huge xinxing test and a great obstacle for me to pass. I believe that it was only through Master’s divine intervention that the show went well. But this experience created so much fear in me that I decided I would never work with the Gala again. My most painful realization was that I had no knowledge in this area and so I could not do well even if I tried my best. It took me a lot of effort to cultivate through my feeling of failure and total lack of control.
Initially I kept insisting that Gala work was not for me. Imagine my surprise when I kept ending up in the wrong meeting during different global meetings. And of course you all can guess which meeting it was that I accidentally ended up at. Anyway, I did not want to accept that nothing happens to a practitioner by chance.
One year before Shen Yun actually came to Sweden, I was asked to coordinate the work. That triggered my strongest fears again. When Shen Yun did not end up coming that year I was relieved. I didn’t reveal this to anyone, as it would have meant me having to reveal many of my attachments, one of them being the fear of failure. A year later when Shen Yun did come, I joined the coordination team. I of course agreed to coordinate even though my heart was disturbed, because as a practitioner I understand that nothing happens accidentally.
At the beginning I regarded most of the work as a job. I tried my best to control my fear of doing things wrong, and carefully planned every detail. Since most of the fellow practitioners on the project were also first timers, things did not always go smoothly. When things went badly, I tended to lose patience and carried a lot of complaints in my heart. I think I gave many practitioners, both coordinators and others, a lot of xinxing tests, which to this day I regret.
During the last four years, while helping other European countries, I had to cooperate with many practitioners who I was not too familiar with. So when it came to coordination, I made many mistakes.
As a coordinator I sometimes have to make decisions that are not always so comfortable for me or for the practitioner in question, especially when I have to choose which practitioner should work in which area. Can every practitioner work with promotion at shopping centers or can everyone work backstage? Can everyone work with organizations? I believe we all have areas we are good at while certain areas we can leave to others. In that way we can utilize our strengths.
When I know the practitioner in question well, then I am able to utilize their strengths but when I do not know them well I go with my judgment and at times my judgment is not always based on the Fa. Once one very friendly practitioner who always greeted me very warmly when we met, wanted to help with Shen Yun promotion at shopping centers. Her personality is a lot like mine, friendly and warm but also quite loud. I could see she was not always that concerned with her appearance, and that too is much like me. I made a judgment that she was not suitable for shopping centers. Because it was uncomfortable for me to tell her that, I ended up making a terrible remark on her appearance when I told her I thought she was unsuitable for this work. I ended up hurting her feelings very badly.
The next morning I drove to pick up a practitioner from an apartment where many practitioners stayed overnight. I opened the door and one young practitioner I know looked at me and said “Bolette? Is that you? What happened to your nose?”
“Ugh!” she said as if she was very disgusted with me because I had something horrible on my nose. Surprised at her remark, as soon as I got to the car, I looked at myself in the mirror but found nothing wrong with my nose. I couldn’t stop looking at myself and felt terrible. I knew then that Master was pointing at me to remember my shortcomings and what I had done to my fellow practitioner the day before. What I felt was nothing compared to what that practitioner might have felt. I truly hope that this practitioner can forgive me for what I did.
I brought up my shortcomings here because I know that I have hurt several practitioners who are here today. I am truly sorry for my lack of compassion and for my many shortcomings.
Every practitioner is an incomparably beautiful pearl
Two years ago a practitioner who coordinated the Shen Yun show in Washington, DC, said a coordinator is like a thread that strings together pearls to form a necklace, whilst practitioners are like pearls. I have thought about these words ever since, and believe that this comment describes true cooperation between coordinators and other practitioners.
Over the years I have managed logistics and promotional work, both in Sweden and in a few other European countries. During these years I increasingly realized how important our practitioners’ efforts are, and have come to cherish every one of their efforts. A coordinator cannot do all the work. When things go well it is because practitioners combine their efforts and their precious hearts to save sentient beings.
One such joint effort was the Rotary Club work this year in Sweden. Some practitioners did research and found that we could introduce Shen Yun to these clubs. From the very start practitioners in this group supported and encouraged each other to overcome many obstacles. Some practitioners overcame their fear of making phone calls and made appointments and these efforts allowed us to give presentations in 35 Rotary clubs. Meanwhile all the presentations needed several practitioners. Two practitioners went together to do the presentation, which lasted 30 minutes. But in reality the planning and preparation took a lot longer. All these efforts meant that nearly 1,000 people got the chance to hear about Shen Yun. And when we reach their hearts these 1,000 people themselves become promoters for Shen Yun to their loved ones and friends.
The work of our practitioners was not confined only to Rotary clubs. Many practitioners also made phone calls or sent emails to other associations and our previous clients. They also contacted bus and travel companies. Promoting Shen Yun at shopping centers took a lot of time, energy, and manpower. In fact, there were so many other areas where fellow practitioners were contributing. The materials group and their translations, the sponsorship group, Chinese practitioners making phone calls to Chinese people, distributing leaflets outside the Theater in cold weather, visiting business premises street by street, visiting hotels to put up posters, etc. Practitioners working for the media worked day and night to publish interviews so more people got to know Shen Yun. And of course we should never forget what kind of tireless efforts practitioners who work with logistics make. It really moves me to tears when seeing fellow practitioners’ great dedication to saving sentient beings.
When we come together to cooperate, things do not always go as smoothly as we want them to. Because we are cultivators we need to cultivate and improve our xinxing while we save sentient beings. Especially with Shen Yun work, all of us in Europe need to improve. Whether we coordinate or are being coordinated, together we build a platform to stand on and from there we make efforts to save as many people as we can. Every time negative thoughts pop up regarding other practitioners, I try to remember Master’s lectures and know that I should cherish my fellow practitioners and all the situations that unfold before me. Surely if we follow Master’s arrangements all things will work out and every one of the seats in the theaters in Europe will be filled with precious sentient beings. I believe this can be done because we are all cultivators of Falun Dafa. If we are able to cooperate 100 percent unconditionally, what a force we can be. Wouldn’t we be able to melt steel with our compassion as Master once said to us?
I would like to finish my sharing with a quote from our Master’s lecture at the “2011 New York Fa Conference:” “When you are working together and experience friction, it is because of human attachments. That is part of one’s cultivation state and process, and absolutely not because someone is truly no good. A person’s good side can’t be seen any more, as it has been separated. What you see will always be the side that has not been cultivated yet. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have a compassionate heart, or should look at people in rigid ways. I’ve said again and again that you cannot see a cultivator’s good side. That side is simply terrific, and has met the standard. And what does it mean to “meet the standard”? It is the standard of a god. Whereas the part of him that hasn’t been successfully cultivated yet, that part is going to seem worse as it works its way up and gets closer to the surface. But, maybe that person has cultivated very well. I hope that you all cherish yourselves, cherish others, and cherish this environment that you have. Cherishing the path that you travel is cherishing yourselves.”
Thank you Master! Thank you all practitioners!