Cultivating Falun Dafa Tremendously Uplifts Both My Body and Heart

A Dafa Practitioner in Austria

PureInsight | December 17, 2012

[] Time passes like flowing water. In October 2012, I will have been in my stumbling cultivation for fifteen years.

During my fifteen years of cultivation, my body and heart have quietly gone through tremendous changes in the process of gradually assimilating to the Fa. I am no longer a selfish person who fights for fame and benefits and struggles with sentimentality and desires. All of these tremendous changes and rapid improvement were gained from the cultivation of Falun Dafa.

Because I was a bit gluttonous and had a big appetite, I was chubby in high school; my weight reached 196 pounds. I was often made fun of by other people because of my weight. I never took this to heart however, and I even thought it was pretty good and that there was no need for me to change.

Now, after looking back, I can see very clearly how strong my attachment to eating was; especially to meat and other foods, this attachment and love of eating could not be any stronger. It had been right in front of my eyes for a long time, but I had ignored it and covered it up for more than ten years.

If there are loopholes that we ignore or cover up, there will eventually be consequences. This attachment to eating made me suffer a lot in my cultivation.

After starting cultivation in Falun Dafa in October of 1997, my chubbiness caused me to sweat in pain while sitting in the single lotus position. That coupled with the karma-eliminating elements of the practice itself, and the immense pain caused me to be extremely fearful whenever I thought about doing the sitting meditation. This would then cause me to sometimes avoid doing the sitting meditation. At that time I still did not enlighten to get rid of my attachment to eating and change my physical shape.

2002 was my first year in Austria. Once, a fellow practitioner and I went together to a small town to run a Falun Dafa Information Day event. When we were sending forth righteous thoughts (SFRT) together, because my legs were big, I had trouble sitting in the full-lotus position and it was extremely painful. My right leg would fall down not very long after I sat in the full lotus position and I had to hold it up with my left hand while SFRT to prevent it from sliding down.

At the time, a Western practitioner corrected me, saying, “This is not the right posture for SFRT.” His kind reminder made me feel very embarrassed. I think this practitioner’s words themselves were to wake me up, but I did not enlighten to it. At that time my weight was about 212 pounds. After that, an event took place that directly caused me to have the thought to relinquish my attachment to eating and to change my body shape.

One day I rode my bike to deliver newspapers in Stadtpark Park in Vienna, Austria, and saw a crowd of people and a group of Chinese officials. A stocky person who looked like a Chinese official asked me, “What do you do for a living?” I said, “I’m a laborer.” Then he said, “I don’t think you look like one.”

I knew he was making fun of my chubby appearance and that he was implying that I did not look like a laborer who would work diligently for a wage. At that time I did not guard my xinxing very well at all; I did not want to hear words that made me feel uncomfortable. I ridiculed him back, “You are not skinny either!” Later, I saw a picture of that person on a local Chinese publication and discovered that he was the previous ambassador of the Chinese embassy in Austria. His hometown was in Shandong Province.

This incident encouraged me to make a steadfast resolution to change my body shape, which is to say that I resolved to let go of my gluttonous heart to all the food that I love to eat! I resolved to manage my diet and try to model my body shape like one of the male dancers in Shen Yun.

Master said, “The Fa can break all attachments, the Fa can destroy all evil, the Fa can shatter all lies, and the Fa can strengthen righteous thoughts” (“Drive Out Interference”).

1. Overcoming Difficulties in Reciting the Fa
I don’t know if it was because of the indulgence of my gluttony towards eating meat that my attachment to lust was being invisibly magnified as well. During two months of 2004, I stumbled severely on lust because I did not guard my xinxing well enough. At that time my heart felt like it was dead, such that even the color of the sky seemed to be grey to me, having no vividness at all. I was depressed and in pain for a long time. I often asked myself whether I was able to continue my cultivation and whether I was still qualified to practice Falun Dafa. I could not control my desire towards eating back then, especially toward meat. It really was like I could not do without eating meat. Overeating and overdrinking almost became a way to release my pain. I don’t remember clearly how chubby I was at that time. My weight was about 243 pounds at the heaviest point. Even sitting in half lotus was very difficult and painful, while sitting in full lotus was totally impossible.

Master is compassionate toward every practitioner; He is always giving us opportunities to correct our mistakes. One day coincidently, I saw on the PureInsight website a Chinese version of a Korean prophecy book Ge Yan Yu Lu. The part about Falun Dafa touched me to the point that I was absolutely stunned. I had a thought that I cannot keep being depressed like this. I aspired to breakthrough this seemingly unsolvable dilemma.

I have dreamed numerous times that I was taking an exam. My score went from failing to passing, and then to stagnating. I agonized over how I could break through my current situation. During that period, I read a lot of articles published by fellow practitioners about reciting the Fa. They touched me a lot. I felt that if I were to recite the Fa, I would be challenging myself, and it would be the best way to make myself more diligent. It was time for me to recite the Fa. I once clearly dreamed that I became the proctor during an exam.

Looking back now, it appears to me that those were all Master’s compassionate arrangements and reminders. He gives disciples who are aware of their mistakes and want to work hard afterwards a precious opportunity to correct themselves. As the Fa-rectification rapidly moves forward, I think such opportunities are becoming fewer and fewer.

Before, I used to study the Fa by reading Zhuan Falun cover to cover. However, I found that I often could not concentrate properly while studying like this, so I had to constantly stop and reread the words that I missed. Since November 2005, the way I have studied Zhuan Falun is by memorizing the Fa using sentences as units (based on the lengths of sentences, I usually memorize about two to three sentences as a unit).

Since April 2009 I started reciting Zhuan Falun based on the unit of paragraphs. The requirement I set for myself was that if I make a mistake or miss one character, I have to recite this paragraph again. Using this method to study the Fa was a test and a process of refinement for the steadfastness of my heart for cultivation. It has been really painful for me to recite the Fa. I have given up countless times. I don’t know how many times I have quit. In my heart I have always thought that I must not quit, and instead need to be more diligent. So every time, I would start reciting again not long after I quit. By August 2010, it had taken me about a year and four months to finish reciting Zhuan Falun through memorizing paragraphs.

As I improved in reciting the Fa, I gradually realized that I should completely give up my attachment to eating. It was also time to change my physical shape, because my chubbiness interfered with my cultivation and demonstration of the exercises. This was a stumbling block in my cultivation path so I had to remove it!

With my diligence in reciting the Fa, plus regularly doing the exercises, my weight was dropping gradually. I was able to control my desire for food and my heart of indulgence. I failed numerous times during this period, alternating between skinniness and chubbiness. I found that this attachment has been accumulating for most of my life, and it was hard to eliminate.

At that time I would walk for about one and a half hours to tourist destinations with materials on my back and deliver newspapers. I would recite the Fa while I was walking. This method worked as a benign start for the change in my body shape.

In this more-than-a-year period of reciting the Fa, I would sit in full lotus if conditions permitted. I felt that by doing it this way my mind could focus easier, and I could concentrate better, and the overall outcome of reciting the Fa was better. Of course when the pain in my legs reached the point where I could not continue, I would loosen my legs, and then cross them again after my legs were not painful anymore in order to not affect reciting the Fa.

Now the way I study the Fa is still by reciting the Fa. I don’t recite the Fa based on sentence units anymore, but instead based on the length of Master’s words and the amount that I’m able to remember at one time.

2. Reciting the Fa Stimulates My Exercise Practice and Changes My Physical Shape
Since I began practicing cultivation, because of the difficulties caused by elements of my being overweight and karma elimination, I couldn’t sit in the full lotus position for very long during the fifth exercise. At Stadtpark Park, I saw a Western practitioner sitting in the full lotus position during the fifth exercise. I was thinking, “When am I going to be able to do this?” To stop my chubby leg from sliding down, I started using a belt to tie it up. I started by managing to sit in full lotus for a long and painful half an hour.

To meditate well, I had to suffer double the amount that practitioners with a normal physique did. It really took me to the very extreme limits of forbearance; it was really unspeakably painful! It’s hard to look back at those days.

Doing the fifth exercise is magical. My body would be warm even in winter. Sometimes my palms and forehead would sweat even while doing the exercise in well below freezing temperatures. Of course, most of the time, I would sweat because of the pain I was in. It was so very painful. I persisted for a year and suffered for a year as well. As my body shape gradually returned to normal, I no longer needed to tie my leg with a belt. Now I can sit in full lotus for two hours.

As I improved at reciting the Fa and practicing the exercises, I found that my body was changing as well. Now I can mostly control my attachment to eating, except sometimes when going out to eat with friends. In recent times, I have been cooking basically all vegetables for myself.

I changed from loving to eat meat, to not favoring any type of meat, to recently being able to pleasantly accept meals that consist of vegetables only. My desire for eating became smaller and smaller to the point that I no longer needed much calorie intake for my daily needs. I also naturally learned to control and restrain my calorie intake from food. For instance, normal people require 2000 calories a day, but I might only require 1500 calories a day. Following this path, my body weight has reduced from the previous 243 pounds to my current weight of 152 pounds. I have lost around 90 pounds!

As my body became thinner, I found that meditating in the full lotus position became easier. Now when I do the fifth exercise, there is no longer any heavy pain. At most, I would feel a little uncomfortable during the last ten minutes at the end. Every week during group exercise in the park, when I finish the fifth exercise, I will not come out of the full lotus position. Instead, I keep my legs in full lotus and wait until the fifteen-minute SFRT is over, and then take my legs down.

During the fifth exercise, if my heart was not calm, or my legs were painful to the point that it was hard to endure, I would usually quietly recite the poems that I could remember from Hong Yin. For example, reciting more than ten poems would take me approximately five minutes; so reciting them twice would take me approximately ten minutes. I used this method to help myself suffer through the most painful days in meditation.

Although my current state during meditation hasn’t reached the wonderful feeling of sitting inside an eggshell, I believe that as long as I persist in being diligent in doing the three things and in improving my xinxing, I will reach it eventually.

3. Delivering Truth-Clarification Newspapers
Some time ago, I sent truth clarification materials to people in Mainland China using the Internet. I urged them to quit the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) organizations by giving them examples and feedback about other people who have quit the CCP, and clarifying the truth to them.

In April this year, a fellow practitioner ordered two sets of Chinese truth-clarification newspapers from a German practitioner. In two months, the body of practitioners in our local area together delivered them to Mainland Chinese tourists that came to Vienna to travel. We also utilized this opportunity to talk to the tourists about quitting the CCP. This became the major Chinese truth-clarification material that we used for getting Chinese tourists to quit the CCP at our Stadtpark Park exercise site. There are four long benches in the park that we use to place truth-clarification materials that are in German, English, Chinese, etc. Behind the benches is the lawn, which is our exercise site. Some tourists would voluntarily take and carefully read the materials while we are doing the exercises. Some Chinese tourists would spontaneously ask for information and learn about the truth from us Dafa practitioners, while some of them would pleasantly quit the CCP. Of course, there are ones that refuse to take or read our truth-clarification materials.

Stadtpark Park is a famous tourist site in Vienna. It is not merely an exercise site, but a window for tourists from different countries around the world to learn the truth about Falun Dafa. It is a window into a world that is against the persecution and for people from Mainland China to quit the CCP.

In my almost fifteen years of cultivation in Falun Dafa, my body, heart, and conduct have been continuously corrected and merged into the Fa. I also require of myself to really accomplish and reach the state of having my every thought, every word, and every action in the Fa for every moment in my future cultivation.

No matter how long the future path is, I will unconditionally look inward, improve my xinxing, and diligently cultivate myself to pay back Master’s benevolent salvation.

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