April 12, 2004 ~ New York
Student: Some coordinators aren’t able to listen to different opinions. They’ve become like the bureaucrats found among everyday people.
Master: Coordinators have to be willing and able to listen to different opinions. But if you think about the coordinators, they’re cultivators too and they’re not perfect. Some students wonder, “Why don’t we pick whoever is smartest and who’s cultivated best in our area to be the coordinator?” (Audience laughs) It doesn’t work that way. And why don’t I come out and do things directly myself? I want to leave you with the opportunity of Consummating and forging mighty-virtue. If I were to do everything, or to tell you how to handle each specific thing and you just followed my direction, sure the coordination would be good, since [you’d think,] “That’s what Master told us. There are no ifs, ands, or buts about it. Let’s just follow Master.” But would you have any mighty-virtue then? What would you have forged? Would you have walked your own path in the face of challenges or hardship? Only when you find ways to do things well as you validate the Fa and meet with challenges, and when your success comes from your own efforts—only that is extraordinary.
The coordinators among Dafa disciples are in fact just coordinators, points of contact, and people who relay information. Don’t think of them as Master, and don’t have such high expectations that you rely on them as you cultivate and expect them to handle everything just right. It’s not like that. If the coordinator were really like Master, or able to consider things from all angles and never be wrong, then a lot of people in that area couldn’t cultivate successfully, since with him thinking things through so well there’d be nothing left for you to think about. If he were to do everything just right you wouldn’t have a chance to show your great qualities. You see the idea, right?
Actually, long ago I told the regional coordinators to manage things loosely, and that, except when it comes to group efforts, which need coordination, they shouldn’t restrict the path that each Dafa disciple takes as an individual who’s validating the Fa. So other than when it’s a case of something bad for Dafa and the coordinator needs to put a stop to it, each Dafa disciple has to fully play his role and proactively do what he should as a Dafa disciple. As you go about validating the Fa, whatever you think of, see, encounter, or can recognize, go ahead and do it, and only then are you walking your own path and forging your own mighty-virtue. Isn’t that how it works? (Applause)
With some students, I’m finding that they’re still fixated on the coordinators, thinking, “How come this coordinator just isn’t up to par?” (Master laughs) If the coordinator were indeed really good and could think of everything ahead of time, then I think the other students in that region would really have no way to put their skills and abilities to work. If a certain region is doing well, then it’s definitely something like this: the coordinators just say that something needs to be done, and Dafa disciples, of their own initiative, coordinate with each other and overcome the challenges together, fully utilizing Dafa disciples’ wisdom, to get it done well and in a more ideal way. Even when the coordinators don’t think things through too well or have even overlooked some things, the Dafa disciples will perfect it along the way—and that is your mighty-virtue. Don’t get resentful when things are tough, and don’t think that you need to have people see what you’re doing. Master can see everything you do, and so can all gods. When you have done well that’s your own, eternal mighty-virtue.
In your cultivation you can’t always look at others. You need to look at yourselves, and cultivate yourselves. When there is a problem, examine yourself and try to find the problem on your part. When you see that something is lacking, figure out how you can do each thing well, keep your thinking right along the way, and manifest the righteous thoughts and righteous actions of a Dafa disciple when faced with challenges—now that is extraordinary. And as a Dafa disciple, that is your validating the Fa with righteous thoughts, and only then are you truly worthy of being a Dafa disciple.
Student: Some countries in the Asia-Pacific region have close ties with the evil, and the disparity in how we’ve done saving sentient beings is huge.
Master: Just do however much you can, and do things that are within your ability and where conditions are ripe. You can hold off in areas where the evil is rampant—that’s okay and not our students’ fault. Of course, wherever there are no Dafa disciples there will be problems saving lives in the future; since you’re Dafa disciples you will think of this. Do things according to the situation, do however much you can, and when it comes to the things you can’t do, we will see what we can do later on.
Student: When we don’t have any [preconceived] notions or preset plans, the effect of validating the Fa is excellent, and when the opposite is true the effect is poor.
Master: Yes, with a lot of things you do, when you are free of human notions your own attachments won’t get mixed in. If, beyond being responsible to the Fa, you have no human attachments, none of your own things, and none of your personal factors mixed in, then you are sure to do that thing well. Whereas once you’ve mixed in your own factors, then you can’t do that thing well.
There is something you must pay attention to: you are validating the Fa, not validating yourselves. A Dafa disciple’s responsibility is to validate the Fa. Validating the Fa is cultivation, and what you remove in the cultivation process is none other than the attachment to self; you can’t, instead, go and exacerbate the problem of validating oneself, even if you do it unwittingly. When you’re validating the Fa and cultivating, that is a process of removing self, and only when you do that are you really validating yourself. That’s because ultimately you have to let go of all your human things, and only after you’ve let go of all your human attachments can you step out from the throngs of everyday people.
You are a cultivator, so you need to have mighty-virtue. And where does your mighty-virtue come from? Doesn’t it come from letting go of self and being selfless in this grueling environment, and being completely responsible to the Fa as a Dafa disciple? Isn’t that, itself, mighty-virtue? And what’s more, you did it in a grueling environment. The more you put you first or mix in [factors of] self, the less mighty-virtue you have, and that’s why it is less likely that you succeed at things or do them well. Dafa’s things should be the most sacred, and that’s why the less you have of your own notions and involve your own factors, the better you can handle them and the more likely you are to succeed.
Student: Can we include photos of Master going through the exercises in the big poster boards we use to display the truth about Dafa?
Master: I don’t think it’s a problem if it’s meant to clarify the truth—and haven’t you done that already? (Audience laughs)
Student: (Master: I won’t read out loud all of the courteous words before the questions, okay?) The television media outlet that was created by Dafa disciples needs manpower, material resources, and money to operate for the long haul. And fellow cultivators at the TV station often say to me, since I’m a Taiwanese disciple, “There are 300 to 500 thousand people in Taiwan cultivating Dafa, so when the TV station needs help we shouldn’t always have a hard time finding people.” Master, could Taiwan focus more on the medium of television to clarify the truth?
Master: Those who know the technology or have the special skills, whether they are from Taiwan or elsewhere, are usually welcome, for sure.
Student: When the progress of a translation gets bogged down, is it due to interference?
Master: Usually the specific things Dafa disciples do are related to their own cultivation, and are, at the same time, related to their circumstances. With specific things like this you still need to discuss together and figure out how to handle them better and walk your own paths. None of the foreign-language Dafa books were translated by me (Master laughs, audience laughs), and every Dafa disciple who is involved shoulders different responsibilities. The translation work isn’t assigned by somebody. It’s all done by people actively discussing [to arrive at their best translation] and coordinating with each other. So just figure out how to do it better. In everything you do, you are validating the Fa and cultivating yourselves, and those are all things you should do.
Student: Should we be selective about admitting students to a Minghui school? (Audience laughs) Master, please give us some guidance on this.
Master: What I think is, you are running a school now, so you shouldn’t be selective about admission. Actually, you know, Dafa is about cultivation only—Dafa has nothing but cultivation. And even though today the path of cultivation Dafa disciples take is different—in order to clarify the truth, to save more of the world’s people, to keep the persecution in check, and so on, some students have gotten together and started up media outlets or done this or that—none of that is part of Dafa itself. Those are cases of students walking their own paths validating the Fa, and those are things created by the students themselves. So that too forges your mighty-virtue, and it’s remarkable.
Since it’s not part of Dafa, then it must be part of ordinary society, and so it should align with ordinary society. Who you’re saving are the lives in ordinary society, so all the more so you need to come closer to ordinary society and have your media outlets become something the general public loves to see and hear. Only that way can you achieve a better effect.
The same is true for Minghui schools. Dafa itself doesn’t have schools, but Dafa disciples are saving sentient beings and clarifying the truth, are leaving behind the best things for the people of the future, the beings of the future, and they are nurturing new, young Dafa disciples. So what it comes down to is, what you are doing are all good things. Then since you are doing good things for sentient beings, you can’t make distinctions between who can enter and who can’t. Wouldn’t it be better to admit more people from ordinary society? Put differently, if you want to move toward having a positive cycle—it’s draining to always have Dafa disciples fund it—then you have to be rooted in society and get into a positive cycle. That’s the way to go.
Student: Can we set up a Minghui class within the educational system and at an existing school?
Master: Just do it according to your circumstances and however you do it should be fine. There are no restrictions or set schemes when it comes to doing good things for sentient beings. Whether it be you setting up a Minghui school or holding Minghui classes yourself, or maybe you’re a teacher and you teach the students according to Zhen-Shan-Ren in class, there is no problem with any of that. And of course, setting up a Minghui school is just a great thing. Now that they’ve been set up, I hope you will run them better and better, make them bigger and bigger, and set up more and more of them. They are a blessing for all lives, and clear out evil beings.
Student: There are often people who come to learn Falun Gong in order to apply for asylum. How should we handle these things?
Master: (Teacher laughs) Actually, that’s really a disgrace for the Chinese government. How come it’s not people from other countries applying for asylum? (Audience laughs) Why are so many people from China applying for asylum? Isn’t China claiming to be “strong”? Ever heard of a strong nation having so many people flee it to become asylees? Sounds like that “strong” bit is bogus.
Looking at it another way, all motives aside, if people want a chance to remain in the United States or in another developed country, the easiest way right now is to apply for asylum using the name of Falun Gong. I’ve heard there are seminars in New York City’s Chinatown on applying for asylum, and (audience laughs) they specifically teach in there how to learn Falun Gong. Of course, they’re not really teaching people Falun Gong. They’re telling people how many movements there are, how many exercises, and what books there are in Falun Gong, along with what the immigration officer will ask in his test (audience laughs). That’s what they are doing.
Anyway, once somebody applies for asylum in the name of Falun Gong, he has given his future to Falun Gong. That’s because he is changing his fate using Falun Gong’s name—whether he’s aware of it or not. That’s putting it in ordinary human terms. The truth is, everyone came here for Dafa, and if the whole world came for Dafa, then of course it’s no big deal if they benefit a little from Dafa. So go ahead, then. (Teacher laughs) As long as the local government doesn’t object, we won’t either.
However, when somebody has gained political asylum using Falun Gong’s name, he is indebted to Falun Gong since it changed his fate. Then that person absolutely cannot be against Falun Gong, or he will be severing his future. There is nothing more dangerous. So with people like him, it’s fine if they come to learn the practice or do the exercises, but along the way you should tell them about what’s at stake: “Make sure you don’t get involved in persecuting Falun Gong, don’t even think about doing that. This is for your own good. I’m telling you this only because you want to use Falun Gong; otherwise I wouldn’t say anything.”
Student: I, a disciple, would like to write in the form of poetry to assist Master in Fa-rectification. I’d like to ask Master, how can I improve my creativity and writing skills?
Master: Actually, I know that what you want to ask is how you can enrich your wisdom to good effect validating the Fa. If you have the foundation that’s needed, you will be able to compose good pieces, for sure, whereas if you’re completely lacking one you will have a certain amount of trouble at first. For example, if you want to write Tang-style poems then you need to first learn about things like what Tang poetry is like, [or similarly,] what Song verse is like or what Yuan drama and verse are like, and then you can try to compose something. Since you’re a Dafa disciple, perhaps when you really want to do that, you will be able to, and well, and you will definitely start off more quickly and mature faster than others, for sure. There are several Dafa disciples who write poetry very fast and without much effort; when they want to compose something they can just compose it right away. With ordinary people, though, it’s a big strain for them to compose something, and they have to get in the right mood and think of some approach or other. But with Dafa disciples things should go quickly, whatever it may be. When you let go of self even more, your wisdom for validating the Fa will naturally come forth.
Student: Recently you mentioned that certain words in your writings need to be revised. Can we directly paste the correct words over the old ones, instead of scratching the old ones off?
Master: Actually it’s fine however you do it, as long as you correct them. The students in mainland China don’t have the means to [paste them on]. I know that in the past, most of the books printed in China used newsprint, and it was pretty thick, so it won’t be damaged if you scratch it lightly with a thin blade. I’m just giving you an idea. You don’t have to do it that way. (Audience laughs)
Student: Out of economic interests, some Asian governments pretend they don’t see the persecution that’s happening in China. Should we put more effort into helping them see the truth about China’s economy?
Master: You can do anything as long as it benefits sentient beings. People think about things differently, and they have different norms they live by. Some people might not consider material gain that important, and you will get good results after they learn the facts. But I know human beings tend to be tempted by material interests.
So let me talk a little about the people in this world. Material interests are necessarily the driving force for lives of the past, who are selfish. The world’s people just live for and are driven by self-interest. And more than anything self-interest can make a person agonize or feel happy, but even if somebody fulfills his desires, what he gains isn’t something everlasting for him, or something concrete and real. Besides, no matter how hard human beings fight for such things, it’s not truly in their hands, since a person’s whole life in this world was determined far in advance, and gods control every step a human being takes. No matter what a person wants, that doesn’t count, though a person’s pursuits can become attachments. The world’s people invariably do things out of self-interest, even though they can’t really achieve what they want. That’s how human beings are. Regardless of whether human beings can obtain something, they will act on it, and that’s human behavior. And it wouldn’t work if they just sat there and waited for good things to drop in their laps—human beings have to do things. When it’s something that belongs to a person, he has to work to get it; and when it’s something that doesn’t belong to him, out of attachments he will labor to get it just the same. That’s how human beings are. The truth is, beyond being attached, while human beings live in this world they are never able to take their fate into their own hands. There is no way they can get whatever they want. For a person to get something, it has to be something that’s preordained as part of his life; if it’s not preordained for him he will never have it. I’ve said before that two things can change a human being’s life. One is to do cultivation, and the other is for that being to start declining. Those things can change a person’s life. Besides them there is no other way for a person to change his life.
So then for a human being what’s the meaning of life? It’s to experience the feeling you get from being attached to self-interest and enjoying the course of a human life soaked in emotion. Think about how pitiful that is, and what kind of feeling that really is. They’re happy when they get something and miserable when they lose it; when they eat meat they find it tasty, and when they eat candy they find it sweet… but in the human world there is also bitter, biting, and painful things, there are the feelings young people have which come from emotional attachments, and then there are the feelings people in different social strata have as they chase after, gain, or lose things over the course of their lives—even though those gains and losses aren’t something that really come from effort. That’s how people are when they live in this world. People are so pitiable! And yet people just can’t see through this so-called “reality,” nor do they want to.
Now for gods, if they’re going to make all those feelings human beings have in this world intense, there have to be some factors involved. For example, they created emotions and feelings for human beings; they gave them a pair of eyes that can’t see the true picture of the cosmos, and created the illusion of material things; and of course there are a lot of other factors. Only then could they make people attached to enjoying these feelings, feelings that gods give man alone, and intensify such feelings. So to have people experience such intense feelings, it was also necessary to make people desire that feeling one has when he gets what he wants. To put it plainly, the lives human beings lead are really just motivated by self-interest—it’s self-interest that keeps a person going. Out of self-interest two people will fight; out of self-interest two nations will battle; and out of self-interest a World War can break out. It’s because humans have this attachment, this desire, of self-interest. And exactly because these factors exist, it’s easy for gods to control things.
Don’t people talk about human rights, freedom of belief, and whatnot these days? Dafa disciples have seen—as cultivators all of you can see clearly—that nothing here in the human world is reliable, and when self-interest is involved those things are just scrapped. In the West aren’t a lot of countries working for democracy, freedom of belief, and human rights? It seems like a sign of modernity’s progress, but then when they’re enticed by self-interest, how many governments speak out against those vile gangsters in China who are persecuting Falun Gong students? What we’ve seen is, they don’t dare to confront the issue, even though many areas that are always thought of as markers of “progress”—such as human rights, freedom of belief, and so on—are being abused. When self-interest is involved they turn so lifeless and weak, they ignore what they see, and they don’t dare to speak out. All of that talk about democracy, freedom of belief, and… all those things people hold in such high esteem and advocate for so strongly instantly become meaningless when material gain is on the line.
As Dafa disciples, you should be clearer about this: we can’t be attached to anything in this world. We cultivate while conforming as much as possible to ordinary society, and even when we’re clarifying the truth now via things like human rights and freedom of belief, that’s still to save sentient beings, that’s all. Back when Communism came along, weren’t people fanatical about it for a while, and didn’t a lot of people think it was society making progress? It’s not enough for you, a cultivator, to just be detached from the human things here—you need to also be sober about them.
I’m not saying you should oppose those things. That should be clear to a Dafa disciple. What I’m doing is conveying, telling you, a truth of the Fa. For mankind to reach this point today, to be able to rationally reduce people’s suffering, there is nothing wrong with that on man’s part. But what can people really accomplish? Actually, being irrational when self-interest is involved is also something under the control of gods. And that’s why when you clarify the truth to the government or the business sector, you will get the feeling that people definitely make their own practical interests the priority. Business people will definitely be thinking about their own company’s financial welfare, since for them such things are the most important. When you go and clarify the truth to them, they don’t want to listen when the thing at hand affects their vital self-interest. I’ve seen that, too. But people are different, and like I just said, there are people who live by different principles. That’s how it is. You can go and do that [form of truth clarification], but you need to be perfectly clear on things, and you need to know how mankind is.
Student: As your disciple, I’d like to ask, why was it arranged in history to have Hong Kong and Macau exist in mainland China under the form of “one country, two systems”? What is the historical origin of these places?
Master: In terms of their historical origin, they are part of China’s territory. On this point, you can’t say they’re another country’s territory. As for “one country, two systems,” since everyone knows that Party is no good, and they themselves even know everybody thinks that way, well, while they wanted to take the territories back and have them ruled by the Party, they also knew that Hong Kong and Macau wouldn’t agree to it, nor would the world, so that resulted in, “one country, two systems.” (Audience laughs) It’s really a shameful thing. How come when other countries had territory returned they didn’t keep two systems? Isn’t it because people don’t like that stuff of theirs?
Student: Is the real purpose of having “one country, two systems” to give the Chinese people a chance to learn the true situation?
Master: Of course, nothing happens by accident, and nothing happens just for one reason. When gods arrange something they don’t think like humans do. When they arrange something, the issues involved are huge and all-encompassing. When human beings look at the world, they do so from amidst one level of particles. For example, this world that human beings see is between two types of particles—molecules and planets—and they look at this world from amidst the particles that are made up of molecules. Gods are different. A god looks at, within the scope of his abilities, the outcomes of what will happen with all the particles in the cosmos as they relate to one thing. They look at things multi-dimensionally and from all perspectives, and that’s why multiple goals are achieved by the things they arrange.
Also, even with how it is, human beings aren’t even allowed to see everything in this world that’s formed by this level of particles. The reason being, if they let humans see everything, there would be a lot that science couldn’t explain, and then people would believe in gods even if you didn’t let them. So in order to keep human beings from seeing this world with perfect clarity, they had to create for human beings a pair of eyes like this. Since human beings’ eyes are made up of molecular particles, why is it that they still can’t see some things that are made up of molecular particles and within this scope? That’s because they set up a lot of obstacles for man. The real purpose of the two systems is to meet the design-needs of the world in this historical period. I’ve talked about these things before.
Student: I often use the literary form of poetry to write truth-clarification articles for Dafa websites, and sometimes, to express the inner meaning of validating the Fa, I didn’t strictly follow the rules and forms of classical poetic composition. Was it wrong to do that? If it is done to accurately convey meaning, it’s not necessary to strictly adhere to the rules and forms of classical poetic composition or stick to conventions—is this understanding correct?
Master: You want to break their rules—is that what you’re saying? Actually, that’s precisely modern man’s mentality after his morality has declined—that is, going against tradition and what’s orthodox. I’m not talking about you here. I’m saying that in terms of the Fa that is where mankind is right now. The truth is, mankind is spiraling downward and growing ignorant. Chinese culture is something gods passed down to man, and every dynasty’s culture, including its poetry—be it Tang poetry, Song verse, or Yuan drama and verse—they’re all forms of culture that different cosmic bodies brought to human beings when they came to form karmic connections. So, if you want to compose those things it’s best to follow their rules. If you say, “I don’t like rhyming,” well, if you don’t like rhyming then there are prose poems nowadays, so you can write prose poems. Those don’t have too much that needs to be followed, and they are in keeping with modern forms. But actually, I think those poems are too bland and don’t have much substance. The poems composed with ancient forms are, on the other hand, something you can savor.
Student: I’d like to send you greetings on behalf of Chongqing Dafa disciples and to pass along their thoughts. They asked me to make sure to relay them to you.
Master: Thank you all. (Applause) Master is fully aware. Tell them that Master is fully aware.
Student: Some disciples are taking some wrong turns after being imprisoned in a labor camp, and other disciples are quite anxious and worried about their state. How should we help them?
Master: If they should be helped, then help them. Lies are easy to expose. What is that “repentance” [the CCP tries to elicit from them]? Where is that “repentance” supposed to lead? Isn’t it all just deception? Upon returning to society and thinking things over calmly, everything will become clear. With all those who were supposedly “transformed,” didn’t they become clear about things not long after they got out? How many of them have stayed foggy-headed this whole time? As for those who couldn’t measure up this whole time, that’s because they feel that they did too many bad things, they know they were wrong, and they’re too ashamed to face [fellow Dafa] students, and now they’re attached to that shame. That’s the reason.
Student: Is it okay for our students to spend money to rent a place for truth-clarification work?
Master: Actually, when it comes to clarifying the truth, Dafa disciples have always used their own savings and salaries to do things. But you do need to take into consideration how you live: not only should you consider how you live, but also how your family lives, and consider others. If you can’t handle your family life or your own life well, that’s going to make it hard for you to clarify the truth. Or from another perspective, if your life isn’t stable and you even have trouble feeding yourself, then you will have to divert your attention to that, and wouldn’t your truth-clarification work in fact be disrupted? So you have to consider your circumstances. I can see your hearts. Just do what you can.
Student: Could Master talk a little more about the future of the cosmos and mankind?
Master: Talking about the future at this time has no real meaning for you. Mankind’s future will be wonderful and the people who remain will be blessed. That’s because Dafa will have been imparted here and so this place will be kept, and the beings who didn’t sin against Dafa in this period will be blessed. Because Dafa was imparted and spread here, it established for the future beings favorable conditions for them to live here. Maybe the grains of the future will be in the form of fruit-bearing trees, with each grain of rice being this big (depicting with hands something like an American football). Just a little humor. But, relatively speaking, the amount of labor involved will be a lot less; the water and air will be clean; those poisonous things, bugs, mosquitoes, flies, [etc.,] will all be gone; and the world will truly be wonderful. The old gods can’t imagine the wonderfulness of the new cosmos since they can’t see it, and they don’t dare to, and aren’t able to, imagine what it is like—it’s built entirely on a different foundation. The beings of the past were selfish, but the cosmos of the future is not founded upon selfishness, and everything will be better.
Student: In the near future a lot of people will come over to obtain the Fa of their own initiative, so should we expand our practice sites?
Master: Of course that’s what you should do, and you’ve been doing that. (Audience laughs) When there are too many people for one site to hold, just start a new practice site. Yes, that’s how it should be done.
Student: Some students in Japan don’t trust each other, which makes it hard to carry out a lot of our Fa-validation work. I feel sad, and really hope that we can improve together as a group soon.
Master: Indeed. Actually, regardless of the situation, when bad factors have a foothold, that’s because our students have problems. Yesterday a student brought up the problem of fake writings, and I would ask this: you are a being made and tempered by Dafa, so how could you be deceived by that fake stuff? And why don’t you evaluate things with the Fa’s standards? Then didn’t the evil gain a foothold because of your attachments being too strong? Actually, some people are still not rational, and their righteous thoughts aren’t strong enough.
Student: In Japan there are more than a thousand religions being spread, and Japanese people always describe Falun Gong as a religion.
Master: Here’s what I think about this. From now on, when somebody says Falun Gong is a religion, just let it go. If they want to learn more you can tell them how Falun Gong isn’t a religion in the usual sense; and if they don’t want to learn more, you don’t need to talk about whether it’s a religion. If somebody wants to call it a religion, so be it, since in society the term “religion” doesn’t have any bad connotations. Dafa disciples don’t take up the form of a formal religion when cultivating, since you don’t observe rituals and don’t want those rituals to interfere with you. What I’m telling you is a basic principle in the Fa. However much ordinary people can understand it… in fact, I told you long ago that ordinary people would call us a religion. I discussed that before when I was teaching the Fa.
Student: In the Japanese edition of Zhuan Falun should the character “的,” as in “目的,” also be changed to the character “地”?1
Master: With Japanese it’s a different story, since its meanings are different from those of the Han Chinese characters. I think it’s better not to touch the Japanese version.
Student: Isn’t it true that the students who are part of the Falun Dafa Association shouldn’t stifle everything that other students do? (Audience laughs)
Master: They shouldn’t stop students from doing things to validate the Fa and save all beings by clarifying the truth, and whoever does that is wrong. But some students tend to go to extremes with things, and that can easily have a negative effect. In that case it is necessary to stop them. Many of you here are the coordinators in different areas, and you should remember one thing: except for when overall coordination is necessary to get something done, let’s loosen the reins and let students temper themselves, and let’s give them a chance to create their own mighty-virtue. You have to give the students opportunities and let them do things. You must remember this. Even I, your master, am setting the reins down and letting our students walk their own paths. When a student has done something wrong you should point it out to him. And if he truly has had a bad effect, then you should talk to him with all due seriousness, and figure out how to correct it and make up for the bad effect. But don’t say he is a demon. It’s hard to avoid making mistakes in cultivation, and of the mistakes, some are going to be big and some small.
Then as for our students, you should take a serious look at yourself. You’re a Dafa disciple, so you can’t be irresponsible to yourself or to Dafa. You are, after all, a being forged by Dafa, and your mighty-virtue will shine brightly in the cosmos of the future. So how could we afford not to walk our paths well? So, let’s not place too much blame on the coordinators. Supposing the coordinator became perfect and he finished his cultivation, but your gaze was always directed outward, instead of going inward cultivating yourself—then would you still be a cultivator? The person you are cultivating is you. If there really is something wrong with the coordinator, then calmly point it out with good intentions. You are all cultivators, and cultivators still have human attachments that they haven’t yet removed, human attachments are really vulnerable to getting provoked, and when they are provoked they’re apt to play a negative role. So you should be kind and resolve things in a kind way, you should be friendly and cordial, and explain things clearly, out of goodwill. And then things will work out. But, if a coordinator can’t even listen to different opinions that are offered up with good intentions, that means he has problems.
On the other hand, a very small number of students are like this: on the surface they’re kind to others, but what they say carries a lot of their own factors, even factors that irk others. But on the surface what they say is plenty gentle. (Audience laughs) That’s being slick and fooling people, and it’s absolutely not the state that a Dafa disciple should have.
If the coordinators in a particular area aren’t cultivating based on the Fa, and/or the Dafa disciples there aren’t studying the Fa diligently, then the kinds of complicated things we’re talking about will appear. But all Dafa disciples and coordinators should be clear on something: a person’s human attachments that haven’t yet been cultivated away will come out, but that doesn’t mean he is no good; and a lot of his well-cultivated facets won’t be displayed, since he has cultivated away those human attachments, after all. The fact is, when a cultivator is among ordinary people but no longer has any human attachments, he really has nothing that can manifest, and of course when he has truly cultivated to that point he will Consummate. So as long as somebody has human attachments, they will show themselves, but that doesn’t mean he hasn’t cultivated or that he hasn’t cultivated well. It’s just that he didn’t do so well with some particular issue or in some area. You should all pay attention to this.
In other words, it’s no big deal if human attachments come out as we cultivate ourselves. What’s key is that everyone handles himself as a cultivator, and when problems come along, you look inside. If everyone can do that, the cultivation state of that area is sure to be great and conflicts are sure to be few.
Student: There are no leaders in cultivation, and Dafa has no organization. When the members or head of our Association interact with other groups in society and with government agencies, is it appropriate to use the titles of Chair or Member of the Association?
Master: I’d say it’s appropriate—wasn’t the association created so that you would conform to ordinary society? Then why not use that approach to clarify the truth in ordinary society? Of course it’s okay, and the government allows you to register. But you can’t have an attachment to showing off, for you are validating the Fa, not yourselves.
Dafa disciples are true cultivators. If today’s society weren’t how it is, I really wouldn’t even want you to set up these [Dafa] Associations, and we’d just have practice sites at different locations along with some coordinators, and then some coordinators for the region, that’s all. In fact, a coordinator is someone who gathers people together, and he too is an ordinary cultivator; he’s somebody who serves others and gives more of himself.
Student: A group of cancer patients wants us to go teach them the practice. Can we do that? [And another question is,] we don’t have the basic skills for singing and dancing, but if we really put our mind to learning and practicing them, can we put together a large-scale performance in a short time?
Master: As for this [second] thing, do what you can in keeping with your circumstances and abilities. But if you don’t have the basics needed to do a large-scale performance, yet you insist on having one, then the audience is going to laugh at you. It’s fine to entertain people, but if people are critical and making fun of you, then I think that will be counterproductive. So what you do should be subject to circumstances.
As for cancer patients wanting to learn the practice, it depends on motivations. When the world’s people want to obtain the Fa, cultivate, or say that Falun Dafa is great, that is human beings proactively validating the Fa and proactively choosing their own futures. But if you use Dafa as some kind of tool for healing, and do that among ordinary people, then that’s actually being disrespectful to Dafa.
You can go to prisons to introduce the practice, and you can go to hospitals to teach it to patients. We do that to validate Dafa. Your thinking has to be the same as when you go elsewhere to teach the practice, and in essence you’re doing it to save sentient beings and have people obtain the Fa and gain salvation. If you make Dafa into a tool for correcting people’s mistakes or curing people’s illnesses, or think of it as a way to change the ordeals ordinary people have [in store for them], then that’s a problem. Dafa is being spread in human society for the sole purpose of saving people. You must be clear on this. Some people say, “Falun Gong is incredibly good at curing cancer. You should all come practice it,” in which case it definitely won’t work, since your thinking is off. Dafa is not here to heal people. It resolves problems for people for the purpose of saving them on a fundamental level. If that’s the starting point then the result is going to be good, for sure. But if you go about it with an attachment to some ordinary thing, then the effect won’t be good.
Cultivation is a solemn thing. Li Hongzhi absolutely did not come here to lead you to heal people, and even less so for some human thing, and absolutely not to lead you to start some religion in society. I came to teach you to cultivate and out of a sense of responsibility for saving your life.
Student: During Taiwan’s presidential election, some students’ human attachments got stirred up. Was it a test arranged by the old forces? What’s the right way for us to handle this?
Master: Even if the sky were to fall, a cultivator’s righteous thoughts would stay unshaken—that is cultivation, and that is remarkable. (Applause) A cultivator is not attached to anything in this world. Dafa disciples’ cultivation takes a different form today. In cultivation you do your best out in the world to conform to ordinary society, you have normal jobs in ordinary society, and you have your families, jobs, and all that—you are closely tied to society. With the Taiwan election, some students thought a certain person was pretty good and so they wanted to vote for him, while others thought a different person was pretty good and wanted to vote for that one. People have their own, different views, and there is nothing wrong with that. A person’s own actions out in society don’t represent Dafa. But you can’t be attached to those things the way ordinary people are.
Whoever you vote for, I can’t, as your Master, say that you’re wrong, nor do I get involved in those things. That’s because the path I ask you to take has you cultivate in ordinary society. Cultivators can only benefit a society. You cultivate in ordinary society but you don’t steer human society in one direction or another.
So for each student, it’s fine for you to vote as an individual for whomever you want. It’s just that you can’t be too attached. But through the persecution against Dafa disciples in China, Dafa disciples have seen through something, and so some are thinking, “Whoever is close to the evil that’s persecuting us, I won’t vote for him.” (Applause) And as your Master I have no objection to that either. (Audience laughs, applauds) Those are the students’ own thoughts, and as your Master I haven’t told you who to vote for. Still less will I tell you to take any group action, and that’s not allowed. (Audience laughs)
As far as students discussing certain things with each other, that’s what they do, and do as individuals, with their fellow cultivators. And when you talk about who you will vote for or who somebody else is going to vote for, those are all the actions of individuals and have nothing to do with Dafa itself or the Dafa Association. A coordinator in the Dafa Association can, just the same, support a certain party, and that’s his personal action. I say that because he is cultivating and at the same time a member of society. Could you ask him to completely do away with all human things while cultivating? That can only happen when he has successfully completed his cultivation. So while he’s cultivating in ordinary society, he will be interacting with society, and he will vote for whomever he wants to. He will have his own views, and there is nothing wrong with that.
Whatever the outcome of the election, it shouldn’t lead to clashes out in society—that’d be awfully dangerous. As a cultivator you should be stricter with yourself, and that’s why I tell our students that you can’t be affected by human attachments or be impulsive like ordinary people. The reason is, you carry energy and have abilities, what you do drives very large factors, and the impact you’d have on society would be huge. So you can’t follow the lead of ordinary people. I did see some students get affected by ordinary people to the point that they were angry and emotionally charged, and their righteous thoughts weren’t strong; at that point nobody could see your cultivator’s image. You can’t do that. During our April 25th appeal years back, we were peaceful and perfectly rational. We are good for society.
Student: Now that not many of the old forces’ dark minions and evil beings are left, what’s interfering with students when they don’t do well?
Master: A lot of the old forces’ dark minions have been eliminated, they’re contracting around China, and from time to time they come out to do something bad. (Audience laughs) And what I want to purge are those bad gods who are outside the Three Realms. They are directing the evil beings, and some are even doing things themselves. But in any case, when it’s at this point, if a god dares to directly take part in those things, then even if I don’t purge him, those above will. Things are now changing fast.
Student: What does “Lasting or momentary—all caused by time” mean?
Master: “Lasting” refers to having gone through long, drawn-out years and everything that unfolded over that time. The “momentary” part just refers to a brief segment of time. Whether it be lasting or momentary, as gods see it, the time-concept’s length is the same. And perhaps a moment of time there will result in long, drawn-out years for the lives here. And to our eyes what is but a moment, that moment could be a long, lasting period in another time field. Meanwhile, what’s a long, lasting period in our world is but a brief moment to certain gigantic gods. It’s time that causes all of this, and it’s time that is playing tricks. That’s what it means.
Student: I had a chance to run for city council, and I got to make friends with many people from different walks of life, and that laid a good foundation for clarifying the truth in the future. Because I wasn’t familiar with the city council position, I had to spend some time learning about issues in the community, participating in community service work, and learning about how to be a council member. Sometimes I feel pretty conflicted about it, as I think I should spend the time producing television programs or on other forms of truth-clarification work.
Master: The Fa I teach is about cultivating in ordinary society. And when you cultivate in ordinary society, you’re going to have all kinds of interactions with society as a Dafa disciple. The different jobs you have inherently [mean you will] interact with society. There is no conflict there.
Actually, a lot of our students have different jobs and they clarify the truth alongside their work. It’s just a matter of how to plan and use your time well, it’s a matter of how to do better. I’m not against your having certain select jobs. No matter how big a business you run or how high your position is, none of that’s at odds [with what we’re doing]. I want to affirm that people from any walk of life can cultivate, and I’m truly setting a precedent [by allowing this]. In history there were very few cases of rich people or people in high-ranking positions being saved. But I don’t discriminate in that manner, I only look at people’s hearts. I’ll save everyone. (Applause) Lived experience has proven that that was right—not only is it doable, but my Dafa disciples have in fact succeeded at cultivation. In the past, because there was no Great Law, the truths that different gods validated and enlightened to were not the fundamental truth of the cosmos. Today the Great Law is being passed on, so anything can be done.
Student: We have a lot of work and activities for validating the Fa. I don’t have the time to ensure I get everything done, and every day I have little time for doing the exercises and studying Fa.
Master: Yes, that is a problem. If you’re really busy with certain concrete Dafa work, you can ease up a bit on the exercises and find time later on to make it up. That’s okay. The reason being, with these exercises, you can do them more when you have the time, and you can do them less when you don’t. Master has told you about this. When it comes to Fa study, though, I think you still need to squeeze in time for study, even if it means for a little while only. But when you squeeze in time for study, there is a problem that’s apt to come up: you can’t calm your mind, and if you can’t calm your mind, you’re in fact studying in vain and wasting time. If you’re going to study, you need to set aside everything else that’s on your mind, keep your mind steady, quiet your mind, and truly study. Even if you just study a few paragraphs [this way], it’s better than reading the entire book with a restless mind. When you study the Fa, you have to absorb it.
Student: Is it true that all of the ordeals disciples now go through are caused by the old forces’ targeting the Fa-rectification?
Master: No, your ordeals are all part of your cultivation, and the old forces’ interference targets the cultivation of only a small number of you. I’m saying that I don’t acknowledge the old forces’ interfering with Dafa disciples, because the Dafa disciples are my disciples, and nobody else is worthy of handling them. And even less could we let them succeed in their plot to use Dafa disciples and impose things on the Dafa disciples to achieve their goals, ruining my disciples. The reason they’ve been able to interfere is, they have seized on your attachments and shortcomings, and then there is your karma left over from your past. The persecution also stems from these factors. The Fa-rectification beyond the Three Realms doesn’t have that direct of a connection with you, but you are here during the Fa-rectification period and you’re here when Master is here, and you are Dafa Disciples in the Fa-rectification period.
Student: Some students think that if they just stay home and send righteous thoughts, and use phone calls to clarify the truth, they count as Fa-rectification disciples and don’t need to come out. Is that okay?
Master: If they’re not all that busy with Dafa things, then it’s not quite right if they don’t come out for group activities to validate the Fa and clarify the truth, or for other activities like group Fa study. Group Fa study is an environment I created for you and a form that I’ve left for you. I think you should still participate. That’s because it has stood the test of experience, and cultivating that way allows our students to improve the fastest. When you cultivate on your own, you miss out on factors that help you improve. And haven’t you, as Dafa disciples, said that you would do as your Master says? Haven’t you said that you should walk straight on the path that a Dafa disciple should take?
I can see your challenges, so I don’t want to say that you “must do” such and such. I rarely say that, because I know it’s tough for you. Besides, in cultivation you’ve got to come to understand things on your own. I spell out the Fa’s principles, but you need to walk the path yourself. If I told you that you “must do” such and such, but you had an omission with something, then the omission would in fact be Master’s fault; Master wouldn’t have let you come to your own understanding of that thing or let you handle it yourself, so you wouldn’t have had a chance to cultivate in that regard. That’s why I rarely put things that way. A Dafa disciple should recognize his responsibilities and what he should do as a Dafa disciple.
Student: I’ve participated in important activities to validate the Fa many times, and discovered that when we try to accomplish something big, there is often a lot of interference, karma elimination, etc.
Master: There has been disruption from day one, so disruptions come along sometimes, both big and small. The remnants of the old forces and those bad things just won’t quit. Every time I teach the Fa, they can hear it. Just like you they hear it, and at the same time as you, but they just insist on doing those things. Their sins are so great that they can’t be measured in terms of their lives anymore. In the future they will pay for their sins endlessly, but even so they won’t be able to pay for all of it—that’s how huge their sins are. And when it comes to the old forces’ remnants in the Three Realms, and the variety of degenerate factors in the cosmos, those final old factors are sacrificing them and making them carry on all the way to the end. Those things’ sins are so huge that their sins could incinerate them. It’s the savagery of those bad factors that has made them that way.
Student: Is it better to have a simple or complicated mind? And for what reasons?
Master: In the eyes of gods, if a person’s mind is simple and clean, gods consider him a good person. And if a person’s mind is complicated, then gods consider him bad, because as gods see it, hasn’t it become complicated because of attachments formed in the human world? Isn’t being complicated a result of being attached to the human world? So this is a principle in cultivation.
Having a simple mind doesn’t mean you have little wisdom, and having a complicated mind doesn’t mean you have wisdom. And that’s not at odds with the form of cultivation Dafa disciples do here in the setting of ordinary people or any of the things you’re doing today to validate the Fa. A Dafa disciple’s wisdom comes from righteous thoughts—divine thoughts—and that kind of wisdom is different from the concept of a complicated mind that has formed among ordinary people and in society. That stuff is all about self-interest, it’s selfish, and it’s a form of cunning developed by scheming against other people. A Dafa disciple’s starting point, on the other hand, is validating Dafa, and there is no seeking something for oneself. So it’s fundamentally different. The latter is great wisdom, while the former should be called complicated thoughts. And their manifestations are different, to be sure.
Student: For a long time now, our area has had a lot of veteran students who haven’t come to group Fa study for quite some time, and they don’t do the exercises with us outdoors, either. They think that they can, without coming to group Fa study, study the Fa well at home just the same, and that at home they can likewise do a good job with the exercises. They think that going about things that way doesn’t prevent us from improving as a whole.
Master: Actually, I’d say that if there really are people like that, then it’s the result of their human attachments. Those who this question is referring to can dig into the recesses of their minds, if they don’t believe it, and they are sure to find attachments. To put it lightly, you are lazy. Put more seriously, you’re afraid. Of course, some veteran students are tied up with tangible work, and that’s different.
Student: If someone followed that disgraceful person in Hong Kong at one time, can he still participate in the media projects we’re now doing?
Master: It’s better not to ask Master a specific question like this. Some of our students have made mistakes, but as long as they have corrected them it’s fine—who has never made a mistake? So from the student’s perspective, when other students don’t trust you, don’t stubbornly go against them. It’s not a bad idea to avoid the issue a little bit, as that way both sides have less psychological pressure on them.
If people don’t let you do those things, you can just go out on the street to pass out flyers, which saves sentient beings just the same. Or you can go to the consulate or embassy to send righteous thoughts or do other things. You can do any of that, so why do you have to be attached to some one thing? The more attached you get, the worse the impression you will give other students, right? So why insist on it? And won’t the old forces use your being like that to cause commotion? So with anything you do, if it can stem from your considering Dafa, then I think things will be different and the situation will change. I’d suggest that all the students who are being regarded with suspicion go to the consulates or embassies and out on the street to pass out information, go to the places that need you most and directly, face-to-face, clarify the truth to people, and don’t get involved in the inner workings of projects for now. Show everyone whether you’re real, whether you’re up to par.
As for those who really are a problem, you don’t need to worry about them. Those people are among Dafa disciples but not in the Fa, and once the old forces are done with them their lives will be ended. Actually, I know that some of the ones with problems do know Dafa is good, but because they fear that the spy agencies will publicize the shameful things they did before which harmed people, their fear has led them to keep doing bad things while begging, all the while, Master’s Law Bodies to make things easier for them. But how could they? Cultivation is so solemn, especially a Dafa disciple’s cultivation—how great the mighty-virtue! Yet they’re begging like that out of attachment, and on top of that they have a filthy fear. They won’t get any approval, that’s not possible. But the old forces’ remnants and rotten demons can see those people’s attachments, and so they impersonate Master and lead them along or tell them it’s okay to do certain things. By doing that they’re trying to persecute them to death.
Student: All Taiwan’s Dafa disciples and young disciples in Taiwan’s Minghui schools send their greetings to Master. (Master: Thank you.) (Everyone applauds) All young disciples in Taiwan’s Minghui kindergartens send their greetings to Master. During the Fa-rectification period, how can we better use the approach of education to validate Dafa?
Master: Actually, what you are doing is validating Dafa. The students at the Minghui schools have become young disciples, and that’s had an impact on society, it has impacted schools, and impacted educational circles. What I am actually hoping is that you will do things in greater depth and with more breadth. (Teacher laughs) (Applause) I said that’s what I’m hoping for, but to put it more accurately, that’s what all lives are hoping for. (Teacher laughs) (Applause)
Student: In one area, after some people had just arrived from China and claimed they were Dafa disciples, some fellow cultivators immediately helped them apply for asylum. Do we need to take some time to learn more about them before we help them to gain refugee status?
Master: When it comes to these issues, students can decide for themselves what to do based on the circumstances. If the person is a true Dafa disciple, then you can’t refuse to help when he has hardship. Ask him a lot of questions from the Fa and it will be clear, won’t it?
Student: Some students go to extremes when they do things and have had a bad effect on Dafa.
Master: The beings that gods respect the least are those who can’t find themselves and whose righteous thoughts are lacking whenever they do things. If somebody can’t find himself, if he doesn’t say what he means, if he goes to extremes when he does things, and if the real him isn’t in control, then tell me, who would I be saving? Which one is you? Gods have the least respect for beings like that. Even though those people have joined the ranks of Dafa disciples, they’re actually not part of Dafa. That’s truly sad. They have no righteous thoughts.
Student: Some students who have supernormal abilities think that, when they send righteous thoughts, the lives in other dimensions should be saved, and that it’s a bit uncompassionate to eradicate them…
Master: If Fa-rectification didn’t exist, or if when this happened it was just the master of some discipline guiding his disciple, then you couldn’t really say it was wrong for his disciple to have that understanding, though the master would think he was lacking in proper thoughts. Any master who had a disciple like that would send him home sooner or later, because if you don’t do what your master tells you, what kind of a disciple are you? Today what’s happening is different. Fa-rectification is unfolding and it goes well beyond a being’s self-cultivation. When a being interferes with you and with Dafa, that being should be cleared away, and it’s no longer a matter of whether you as an individual are merciful; rather, it’s a matter of whether you are responsible to Dafa.
You’re a Dafa disciple, so don’t think that the goal of saving people is just for you yourself to cultivate to Consummation. It’s not. A Dafa disciple’s responsibility is to validate the Fa. Will you not even validate the Fa? When Dafa is being damaged, are you indifferent? The Dafa disciples in China were killed by persecution from those things—does that have nothing to do with you? You’ve gained everything from the Fa, while Dafa does not need anything from you in return. But since you’re one of the Dafa disciples, if Dafa were gone, could you possibly exist? Isn’t safeguarding Dafa safeguarding yourself? Actually, I think the problem this student has goes beyond mere confusion. I didn’t finish reading what’s on the question slip...
Student: …invented some stuff that involves reciting “Lunyu” a certain number of times and adding specific mudras,2 saying it has a powerful effect. (Master: See, didn’t I say his problem went beyond mere confusion?) (Audience laughs) And he covertly went around teaching other students.
Master: That’s interference. He is being used by demons now, only it’s not yet that serious. This person’s level as a student has dropped badly, and compared to the Dafa disciples who are validating the Fa in an upstanding way and with dignity, he comes across as so paltry, (Teacher sighs) and he’s way behind. In reality he can’t interfere with other students, since a lot of students can tell that he’s not right, and only a small minority who have strong attachments are going to be affected.
Student: I feel that the old forces arranged for us some critical junctures and want to keep us down, but as long as we pass those tests and overcome those ordeals we will be able to let go of our fundamental attachments and thereby do better.
Master: Yes, if you weren’t attached to anything the old forces would have no excuse and could do nothing to you.
Student: What is Taiwan’s role in the Fa-rectification period, and what will it be after the Fa rectifies the human world?
Master: The Fa rectifying the human world is a future affair. As for Taiwan’s role, I can only tell you that while [it and the Mainland] have the same ancestors and belong to the same ethnic group, the attitudes towards Dafa on the two sides of the Strait are different, and it provides a striking contrast.
Student: How, specifically, will Dafa disciples know it’s the day when the Fa-rectification period ends?
Master: Don’t be attached. When that day comes, the history of this old cosmos will end, and Dafa disciples will Consummate. That instant when you Consummate and become Unlocked, for a sentient being, that’s just a matter of moving from one second to the next—and it’s not even a second—from one instant to the next, and the dividing line between being human and divine is crossed. A Dafa disciple’s cultivation goes from the microcosm to the surface, and that’s why the part that has been fully cultivated in the microcosm will not do anything when the main body isn’t controlling it, but it knows everything since it has finished cultivating, after all. There is a part of you that’s in the highest realm you have cultivated to and in each single realm below it, all the way down, and you will know the state of affairs in all of the realms you are in. So between one second and the next, one instantly goes from being a human to being divine. And at that instant you will know everything, and at that instant you will become an omnipotent, magnificent god.
Student: Is the current political situation in Taiwan the old forces’ design, or was it caused by Dafa disciples’ attachments?
Master: Looks like our students are really concerned with this. Dafa disciples didn’t cause the situation; those things have nothing to do with our Dafa disciples. They were all caused by factors that the old forces left behind in the past. But judging by things at present, the old-force remnants seem like they can’t carry out their wishes anymore.
Student: There is a student who went to Beijing to make an appeal after the evil began its persecution. But after that he would only read Zhuan Falun and not the newer writings. We’ve shared our thoughts with him many times, hoping he would snap out of that crooked understanding, but none of it was effective. May I ask what kind of “heavy hammer” should be used to wake him up? (Teacher laughs) (Audience laughs)
Master: Talk to him with good intentions and see what his attachments are. He has a mental obstacle due to an attachment, and he has fear, and they are what brought about that state. He believed the evil’s lies and propaganda—what else? But he does know the Fa is good, so he’s conflicted, and he can’t let go [of some things]. If he really can’t get up to par, then that’s his own issue. But if there’s still hope of saving him, then you should help him.
Student: Recently we’ve been using the form of artistic performances to raise awareness in the community, and the results have been great. Some groups have invited us to demonstrate the exercises and teach the practice, with one group consisting solely of cancer patients. I’d like to ask, how should we handle it? Also, we’re planning to organize a large-scale performance. Can we charge admission? Can we raise money for other groups?
Master: You absolutely cannot raise money for other groups, and you shouldn’t do things that have no significance for Dafa disciples. For Dafa disciples the first priority is to validate the Fa, clarify the truth, save sentient beings, and negate the persecution, and nothing should dilute your focus. If you do things that have no connection to Dafa, what you get won’t be worth the effort.
Some people might be thinking, “If I raise some money for them, those people might be good toward Falun Gong.” That’s not how it works. I’ve taught the Fa for so many years now, and I’ve never thought about using financial means, some sort of authority, or personal influence to get people to obtain the Fa. It’s no good if people don’t come for the Fa.
Student: While the lawsuits are going on, can our students clarify the truth to the judges? Would that compromise the integrity of the judicial process?
Master: Talking about the persecution shouldn’t be a problem, and it should be fine for students who aren’t part of the lawsuit to clarify the truth. In the human world people have sealed themselves off with a slew of restrictions, but if you do things with wisdom, you won’t be doing anything bad, and there shouldn’t be a problem.
Student: A coordinator who has clarified the truth at a particular tourist spot in Hong Kong has managed to rectify that place so well, it’s really admirable. Some students think of her as a god. And some students have said that going there to clarify the truth for a week is better than cultivating in Taiwan for a whole year. (Audience laughs) (Master: Now that’s extreme.) Because a lot of students go there out of admiration…
Master: Our students should keep in mind that some of our students have done well but they are still cultivating, as is she. So if we do those things, won’t it lead them to form new attachments? And won’t it make them a little too pleased with themselves? So I think you still need to be careful. Yes, when a student has cultivated well in some regard, we should learn from him or her. But the student is still cultivating and still has human attachments that haven’t been removed yet, so you still need to use the Fa as your standard.
Student: …recently the woman has insisted on changing the way to send righteous thoughts. She altered the order of the five-minute segments, changing the first five minutes from purging all the bad thoughts in her own mind to eradicating the dark minions. And she makes other students follow her formulas.
Master: See, here we go. (Audience laughs) It caused her to form attachments—see what happened now? You led her to do things her own way. That’s why I tell you that you need to study the Fa a lot and use the Fa as your standard. Whenever a person cultivates well in some regard, that’s because she has cultivated well in the Fa, not because she is better than the Fa. So if you follow somebody’s example instead of learning from the Fa… [remember that] before the person has finished her cultivation she still has flaws, and when she’s good in one regard it doesn’t mean she’s good in every regard. Now it’s really happened, you’ve triggered the student’s attachment. Be careful with this type of thing.
Student: Master, would you please talk about how we can spread to different people the Zhen-Shan-Ren quality of the cosmos using the media in a subtle and wise way? And what are beings in the Daoist paradises like?
Master: What are you talking about? (Audience laughs) “…spread to different people… using the media in a subtle and wise way?” Why does it sound to me like that’s not something a Dafa disciple would say? Maybe this is a new student. There is no “subtle and wise” way. Dafa disciples are all doing things according to the Fa; they have compassion for all beings and are letting sentient beings know what’s wonderful. They’re doing this based on what fits their respective circumstances and based on their own desire to do so.
What are the Daoist paradises like? The Daoist system, as I’ve said before, didn’t have paradises in the past. Daoists cultivate solo and in complete solitude, and even in the heavens they stay in caves. And the Daos in the heavens wander about, too, and only in a small number of cases do they have Daoist temples. Not that long ago, with the appearance of the Daoist religion, there were Buddho-Daoist disputes that came about. That’s why the Daoist religion was established, and the Daoist religion began to have its own Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. All of these things have been resolved.
Student: When a husband and wife are both Dafa disciples and they have conflicts and problems that can’t be resolved, can they divorce? (Audience laughs) Does it have anything to do with cultivation?
Master: Actually I’d say you have omissions in your cultivation, even though some students might say that you’re doing all right. Aren’t you overly attached to those human things? If both of you could let go of self and cultivate well and not have such a strong sense of self, then could you not handle those things well, given that both the husband and wife are Dafa disciples?
As for divorce, I’ve told you to conform to ordinary society as much as possible; today, whether it’s getting divorced or getting married, I won’t say anything. I discuss things in terms of the Fa’s principles. But I will tell you, things [such as divorce] won’t be allowed in the future. They result from the current state of modern society. I can’t force you to do things a certain way, but the lives of the future won’t be allowed to do this, nor would they [if they could].
Well, let’s talk a little about human beings, too. Nowadays people consider emotional feelings really important, yet they are one of the most unreliable things. “When you’re nice to me I’m happy, and when you’re no longer nice to me the feeling is gone.” Then how could you count on that thing? Could feelings sustain a marriage? Not only are there moral obligations for human beings, but also, a husband and wife are indebted to each other. When a woman has put her whole life in a man’s hands, he should realize, “This woman has entrusted her whole life to me. I have to be responsible for her.” The sense of indebtedness that a husband and wife have for each other is something people don’t recognize or value today. Of course, the state of society now isn’t like [what I just described], so I don’t hold you to that. As Dafa disciples you should handle yourselves well and try your best to avoid such things [as divorce].
Of course, just now I only talked about men. I need to talk a little about women now. (Audience laughs) Well, I’ll go easy. (Audience laughs) Women, for their part, need to be understanding of their man. Women: you all want your man, your husband, to be a strong, upstanding and dignified, manly guy, but in your actions you always keep him down, keeping him under such tight control that he’s effeminate (audience laughs). How could he be manly, then? When the whole society is in this state, think about it, the society’s men have all become she-men, (audience laughs) and all the women have become he-women (audience laughs)—it’s the inversion of yin and yang. Of course, that’s how society is, and I won’t insist that you be a certain way. We do have some female students who are indeed really talented, and there are some people who are really amazing, (Master laughs) and sometimes they surpass men in terms of abilities. But all the same, a lot of times you really need to be considerate of your men. As a cultivator, you have to be a good person wherever you are, and you have to be considerate of others—so in the home why can’t you be considerate and understanding of your own husband? Aren’t we to leave the future mankind with the best things? When both of you are cultivators you should each be considerate of one another, and then divorce shouldn’t even be something you consider. Marriage should be something unbreakable. (Audience laughs) (Teacher sighs)
Student: I’d like to ask you to please talk about how to clarify the truth to businessmen.
Master: Human beings are attached to self-interest. For ordinary people, self-interest is above all else, and that’s just how human beings are. When you tell them about the truth, they will understand, “Oh, you’re good people and you’re being persecuted. But I still need to go make money.” Because different countries keep investing money [in China] at this time when Falun Gong is being persecuted, it has given the evil the ability and funds to persecute Falun Gong, and it has made those countries who invested the money dependent on that market, so they don’t dare to expose anything or take a stance against the persecution. That’s just how human beings are, unless they take up cultivation, so that’s as far as we can go to get the message across to them. So with businessmen you can leave it at that.
Student: I’d like to ask Master, Shakyamuni validated and enlightened to “Precept, Concentration, Wisdom,” so while we assimilate to the Fa we must also validate and enlighten to, within Dafa, our own principles that assimilate to the Fa, is that correct?
Master: Yes, but I haven’t finished summarizing those things that you are to validate and enlighten to, so you don’t know what they are yet—you won’t know until you are Enlightened, for our cultivation method is different. Don’t go and create something just to be different. If you go off and invent some new term tomorrow, and claim “This is what I’m cultivating,” then you will have gone astray.
Student: Dafa disciples from Australia, Japan, Malaysia, (Master: I think I will read these.) Australia, Japan, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, Macau, Korea, Taiwan, New Zealand, the Dafa disciples illegally detained in Beijing’s Women’s Forced Labor Camp, Liuzhou in Guangxi province, Meizhou in Guangdong province, Shenzhen, Yangzhou in Jiangsu province, Sydney, Japan’s Minghui schools, Ningbo in Zhejiang province, Zhuhai, Hangzhou, Qingdao in Shandong province, Haiyang, Shanghai, Yanbian, Wuhan, Shanxi, the city of Jilin in Jilin province, the city of Shuangcheng in Heilongjiang province, Weihai, Fanyu in Guangzhou province, Xi-an, Beijing, and the city of Jiangmen in Guangdong province send their highest regards to magnificent, esteemed Master.
Master: Thank you all. (Applause) I know. And that’s especially so for those students in China, I know what they’re feeling, I know their longing for Master, and in fact I feel the same way toward them. The evil will be eliminated; dark clouds won’t always be able to eclipse the sky.
Student: When I called Beijing to clarify the truth, a fellow cultivator answered the phone. I told them, “Dafa disciples around the world are thinking of you. Please firmly believe in Master and Dafa. It’s hard to endure, but you can endure it. It’s hard to do, but you can do it.” The practitioner asked me to send his regards to Master when I see you. Everyone misses you.
Master: I thank you all. (Applause)
Student: I’d like to relay greetings to Master from public security officers in Guangdong province. Currently there are (Master: I’ll skip the part that tells the number of them here) who see the persecution for what it is.
Master: The situation of clarifying the truth and saving beings is changing faster for China Dafa disciples than internationally, and that’s because there are, after all, a great number of Dafa disciples there; almost 100 million Dafa disciples are exerting a gigantic influence negating the persecution. Clarifying the truth all around the world and saving the beings outside China has helped people everywhere to become aware of the truth and condemn the persecution, and it has cleared away evil. It is the result of Fa-rectification and the concerted efforts of Dafa disciples all over the world. But for the persecution in China to stop before Fa-rectification arrives, the Dafa disciples in China would still have to play the main role. Many members of the general public in China are annoyed with the current persecution, and it’s not just the general public—at higher strata of society, too, and even in the upper echelon of government, many people have stepped forward to talk directly about the facts of the persecution against Falun Gong. Soon the public will stand up and condemn this persecution.
Student: In recent writings you have mentioned greater responsibilities awaiting us in the future. Did that refer to our descending to the mortal world after Consummation to save our sentient beings?
Master: What you’re doing right now is saving sentient beings. You can’t go up and then come back. (Audience laughs) Who’d want to come back? You are here and think that this place is pretty good, but that’s because your eyes can’t see the reality of things here. Once you arrive up there and take a look back, you will find it just filthy here in this human world, and you wouldn’t want to come back even if you were asked to. And that’s why I say those beings who dared to come here and obtain the Fa are all worth cherishing. But the persecution by the old forces has caused sentient beings to sin against Dafa, and the actions of human beings during this persecution have truly ruined a lot of people, and ruined a lot of lives.
Student: How should handicapped disciples handle sending righteous thoughts? I ask because my right hand is crippled.
Master: Then you can use your left hand. It doesn’t matter, because it’s even fine not to use any mudra when you send righteous thoughts. I asked you to use mudras to help you have a stronger sense that you are sending righteous thoughts, to give you a greater sense of command, that’s all.
Student: In Taiwan, how can we encourage fellow cultivators to change from being passive to proactive validating Dafa, and to treasure the final lot of time in Fa-rectification?
Master: Now about this, actually, I’m the least worried about the students in Taiwan. Because of the government’s attitude toward Dafa there, that doesn’t worry me much. And because with the Fa available, the students there have done very well. Sometimes I feel like what they’re doing is similar to what took place back when I was in China. (Applause) As for a very small number of people not doing well in certain regions, it’s a manifestation of the process of a student’s gaining a better understanding and the process of new students maturing, and all of that will gradually get better. The disruptions they encounter in their personal cultivation aren’t the same as persecution in China, but there will of course often be tests for the individuals. So as cultivators you have to understand it correctly. You can’t be afraid of ordeals and tests. Would you be cultivating if you spent all your days in total comfort and happiness?
Student: When we study the Fa with Chinese students, we read a paragraph in Chinese and then a paragraph in Japanese. Some Chinese students think that studying the Fa this way is too slow and it’s not as effective as reading as one [language] group.
Master: I think either way is fine, it’s okay to have the Japanese-speaking students reading together and the Chinese-speaking students reading together. Whatever is easier for you. There is no absolute rule. Just do whatever helps people improve.
Student: I’m pretty young. When I see attachments in some fellow cultivators who are older than me, I don’t dare to bring them up. Is this fear—an attachment?
Master: Don’t be afraid. When you see something that’s wrong you can speak up about it. Even very, very young disciples can talk about what they see.
Student: I know a student who made a huge mistake several years ago and really had a negative impact on Dafa. Now he’s in a really tough situation. Should I help him?
Master: If the person did bad things and stopped practicing, then you can’t call him a student. Right now you’re all busy clarifying the truth, so you can judge for yourself whether it’s worth it to spend a lot of time helping him. Whether the person can still be saved, and what the trade-offs are of doing something like that given what you have right now, those are things you should decide based on circumstances.
Student: Taiwan is where Chinese-language newspapers are read most outside of China. Master, would you please give us some guidance on the future of publishing a daily newspaper in Taiwan.
Master: I’ll still say the same thing: make the decision yourselves based on our students’ circumstances and abilities. Don’t ask Master to affirm something. Once Master says something, you will say, “Master said it,” and disregard whether it’s feasible, whether there are challenges, and whether conditions are ripe, and you will disregard everything and insist on doing it. That’s why I say that you have to plan things subject to your circumstances.
Student: How should we understand “I brush off the enshrouding dust, and all their realities are seen”?
Master: “Brush off the enshrouding dust”… from the dawn of time in the cosmos up through the present, a measureless amount of time has passed. There are always cosmic bodies disintegrating, just like metabolism. They disintegrate and then re-form, and form and then disintegrate again. Because of this, mankind’s science actually believes that a big explosion is what brought about the universe. The cosmos’s dust has been falling downward, and bad elements are continually going downward. From top to bottom, no level is as pure as it was back then. And the Three Realms, in particular, has gotten worse and worse; it has been enshrouded with dust for so long, and the dust is getting ever thicker. When the moon was sent up before, it wasn’t as big as it is today; now the thickness of its outer surface has increased by dozens of kilometers. So as for, “I brush off the enshrouding dust, and all their realities are seen,” sentient beings have been covered by some external factors, and many bad elements have made even the beings themselves impure, and mankind, specifically, has been controlled by outside evil during the persecution of Dafa. So after these things are cleansed we will take another look and see how those beings are. That’s what it means. (Applause)
Student: Overall planning and coordinating are both present with any issue. Why is it that you encourage coordination but not overall planning?
Master: You just need to get together and discuss how to do things. Fa-rectification has its own progression. Actually, what you’re doing are just the three things; the premise has already been set. With the three things being the focal point, you figure out how to do them well and at the same time cultivate yourselves well and save sentient beings—the hardest part is saving sentient beings. Doing things well is actually a matter of coordination. When I say coordination, I’m talking about cooperating and working well together. Validating the Fa is also cultivation, and if you all look within, you will be able to cooperate well. Dafa is cultivation, and there is nothing else. Dafa disciples are doing things to clarify the truth to, for one, save all beings, and secondly, to restrain the persecution, to expose the persecution, and oppose it. We have no other objectives. So as for the activities that Dafa disciples organize and truth-clarification via the form of media, you get together to plan things out, and those are things our students do as individuals.
Student: Are the factors outside the cosmos the same thing as lifeless, still water?
Master: The lifeless water that I talked about is only a form at a certain level of the cosmos. The cosmos is so complex that it can’t be described with man’s language. At a certain point there’s not even water, it’s no longer water. The cosmos is incredibly immense, and in each enormous realm there is a fundamental reason behind the creation of that cosmos, but none of them is the most fundamental reason. But to the beings in a given realm, when they see all of that they think it is the fundamental reason. That is a very common phenomenon.
Student: Can coordinators in the Dafa Association place themselves above the students? The students aren’t able to raise criticism, and the main coordinator is forming factions and cliques.
Master: I think that if a coordinator does in fact have that problem, then he really needs to pay attention to it. Why do the students think of you, a coordinator, like that? Maybe it is the case that you have a lot of problems? You should really think it over now. Coordinators… well actually, when I refer to “coordinators,” or the people with positions of responsibility, it’s just a name. What are you “responsible” for? Could you be responsible for Dafa? Could you really handle that? Actually, you are just liaisons, people who serve others, and you have no power or authority. The best role you can play helping Master, at the surface, human level, is to help everyone to work together well.
It doesn’t seem appropriate to say that the coordinators are rounding up cohorts to form a clique. Aren’t all the coordinators actually taking care of and overseeing our students? Maybe sometimes they seem closer to those around them, and it’s apt to give students the impression you mentioned. If certain students have issues with the coordinator and make known his shortcomings among some students, then there is a problem on their part, too. You’re cultivating, so why aren’t you looking inside? You’re stirring up antagonism toward the coordinator, you’re leading a group of people to go against the coordinator. That is being irresponsible to both yourself and Dafa. So I look at both sides [of the conflict].
Coordinators need to do well, of course, but students shouldn’t always focus on them. You are Dafa disciples, and each of you is cultivating yourself, so what are you doing? Are you only helping the coordinator to cultivate? Don’t you cultivate yourself? That would seem to be the problem. But as for the coordinator, do you truly have a serious problem? If you can’t help Master lead the students in your area well, then don’t you have problems yourself? Do you know what I think? I can’t leave behind any Dafa disciples. Every person is family to me, so how can you treat different members of my family differently? I will definitely support you, the coordinators, in your Dafa work, and your guiding of the local students well is really a great contribution. Ordinary people have a saying: “Don’t utilize a questionable person; if you utilize someone, don’t question him.” That’s what ordinary people say. Dafa is tempering you, but as our Dafa disciples you should remove all your attachments, including the attachment to being a coordinator or a leader. Everyone is a cultivator. It’s only that you are someone who gives more for others. So coordinators, that’s what I require of you as your Master.
Doing Dafa work is also cultivating, and none of the work methods in ordinary society have anything to do with how you go about being a coordinator in Dafa. In other words, this form or way of work didn’t exist before, where someone both has responsibility and is an ordinary cultivator. You are exploring your own paths, and each Dafa coordinator is tempering himself. At the beginning maybe he didn’t do too well, but gradually he should mature. And during that process he will certainly have shortcomings and make mistakes, and that is the process of being tempered. That’s how I look at it as your Master. I can’t replace him with somebody else before he has been tempered to maturity and start tempering the new person from scratch, because in that process there would be a lot of mistakes and students would have a lot of complaints, and that could even impair Dafa’s overall state and disrupt Dafa disciples’ validating of Fa as one body.
When a coordinator has a problem, students should point it out to him, and even put it to him in serious terms. Students, meanwhile, should put Dafa first, instead of always putting their own opinions first and pointing out how others are wrong. If a particular coordinator in the Dafa Association really is holding students back from doing things, then he has a serious problem, as it amounts to interfering with each Dafa disciple’s walking of his own path validating the Fa. If the person truly is like that, then we need to think about whether the person is suitable. It won’t work if he goes on like that. But if it’s otherwise, or if some students have in fact botched things, and they aren’t willing to listen to the coordinator’s advice and turn it around and claim he’s interfering with their validating of Fa, then that’s no good. In that scenario why can’t our Dafa disciples look at things from the standpoint of Dafa? I want each person to be tempered to maturity.
Looking at it from another angle, your conflicts are in fact tests that you need to pass in the process of improving. You are all improving yourselves, and each person should look inward, at himself. But when such problems come up, we can’t say that the coordinator doesn’t have a part in it—you do have to bear responsibility for it. When you haven’t done well leading such a large group of students, the responsibility is major, and you should realize this. As your Master, I can’t leave behind a single disciple, and I will tell you that as a coordinator, you can’t leave behind a single one of my disciples. (Applause) When a student is on good terms with you, you do things with him, and when someone doesn’t listen to you, you exclude him? You can’t be like that, and as your Master I don’t want that kind of coordinator. You need to coordinate in a way that allows people to work together, and you need to continually improve based on Fa and form a healthy environment, so that Dafa disciples can do well the things of validating Fa, like clarifying the truth, saving sentient beings, and restraining the persecution.
Student: In the past four years, some Falun Gong students from China have spent a lot of money to come to Korea to work. Their immigration status is illegal, and their monthly income is seven to ten thousand yuan. They aren’t able to recognize the responsibility a Dafa disciple has during the Fa-rectification period, and have come here just to make money and send money home. They even say it was arranged by Master. I’d like to ask how we can convince these students to return to China to validate the Fa?
Master: When a Dafa disciple sees that the situation in China is grim, that still more Dafa disciples are being persecuted, and that many of the world’s people are being poisoned, if a Dafa disciple doesn’t do the things a Dafa disciple does, then is he still a Dafa disciple? It’s okay to leave China to do Dafa things, but if somebody doesn’t do Dafa things, how could he still be worthy of being a Dafa disciple? Whether they’re in China or abroad, they should still be Dafa disciples. Once they become the same as ordinary people, they are ordinary people. So you have to clearly explain to these students that if they want to remain there, they need to do what a Dafa disciple should do.
Student: Recently, the differences of opinion and misunderstandings among fellow cultivators have been pretty big. I’d like to ask Master, is this because the further we go in the latter stages of cultivation, the bigger the differences among fellow cultivators’ levels? Or is it the old forces interfering?
Master: It’s true that the differences among students’ levels are getting bigger, but the old forces’ interfering has never stopped, either. So whenever there are personal factors in a student’s opinion, it’s going to be exploited. This phenomenon doesn’t occur that much anymore. Actually, I’ve talked about this kind of thing many times. The cultivating students are a collective entity, and all kinds of not-yet-removed [human] thoughts will manifest. If you don’t want to look inward and cultivate yourselves, then a complicated situation will take shape. So when these problems come up in some area, it’s for sure there is a problem with that area’s Fa study. All of those involved are [partially] responsible and haven’t cultivated themselves well, or at least in terms of that one issue.
Student: How are we different from a religion?
Master: Dafa is formless! The path I’m taking you down today is the purest. We’ve cast aside every thing with form, and look only at the heart. Cultivation is the cornerstone of a being’s elevation, whereas anything that’s about external form is going to stir up attachments. Look at how many religious people there are today who don’t uphold Buddhas, Daos, or Gods but instead religion’s forms. What they believe in is not gods, but the form of religion and the cause of building up religions—there’s a world of difference. Believing in gods and believing in religions—they are poles apart. Religions can evoke people’s attachments to the forms themselves, and they have severely affected people’s righteous faith in gods. There are factors in the forms that affect a believer’s improvement.
Student: Sometimes when I meet with ordeals I don’t know if it’s a result of my own karma or the old forces’ arrangements.
Master: Regardless of whether it’s the old forces’ arrangements or karma, we should first of all examine ourselves. I ask you to cleanse yourselves first even when you send righteous thoughts. Look at yourself first, and if you discover that you have a problem, take care of it. With that the old forces won’t be able to do anything; when they can’t find anything to hold against you they will back off. Of course, at the current time even if the old forces want to back off, that won’t do—clear them away entirely. After you cleanse yourself when you sit to send righteous thoughts, clear them away. (Applause)
Student: After reading “Waist Drum Troupe” in Hong Yin II, I came to understand that the waist drum formation has the effect of eliminating evil and rectifying the Fa.
Master: Yes, the sounds of your drumming carry Zhen-Shan-Ren in them, and the abilities of Dafa disciples shine through.
Student: The young disciples in Taiwan have formed a Western-style drum troupe. I think they should form a waist drum troupe. (Audience laughs)
Master: Don’t let forms limit you. Everything Dafa disciples do validating the Fa has power. Actually, the waist drum troupe was just an idea the New York students came up with. We often participate in ordinary community parades, and we wanted to show the world’s people the ordinary side of a Dafa disciple’s life. Every time they were in a parade they had Tang Dynasty costumes, celestial maidens, and so on, so they wondered, “Can we come up with something else?” And thus the idea of a waist drum troupe came about. We can use a variety of forms, so if you have an idea and think it’s doable, that’s okay, too.
Student: No matter the circumstances, we will all be steadfast in Dafa, and will always follow Master, each step of the way, to complete our mission of validating the Fa.
Master: Yes, as Dafa disciples, all of you here might have that thought, and that’s why there have been huge changes in the situation of validating the Fa in this world, that’s why the evil has shrunk today, and that’s why we can save sentient beings. (Applause)
Student: I think some students in Australia aren’t following the Fa but following people and just going along with the crowd, and they’re disrupting the Fa-rectification and our effort to save the world’s people. And there are some students who like to monopolize things and when they’re not able to accomplish something they won’t openly tell everyone. They don’t discuss things with everyone and don’t do things transparently. Other people think they’re doing grand and amazing things, when in fact they didn’t accomplish anything substantial, and they won’t tell everyone that they have wasted precious time. They squeeze out those students who actually do things.
Master: I know about Australia’s situation. Some students’ human attachments are still quite strong. I am looking to see when you can all get past self.
Student: If an ordinary people’s organization doesn’t let us participate in a parade under Dafa’s name, can we use another name or should we just not participate at all?
Master: If that’s the case of course we can’t participate. Are Dafa disciples joining them for fun? Dafa disciples came to save sentient beings, so [we join parades] to show Dafa to the world’s people and let them know that Dafa is here. If they won’t let us do that, then of course we won’t participate. But not participating isn’t a solution—why won’t they let us [use Dafa’s name]? You should go talk to them, and you can clarify the truth. If they have an underlying political motive, then we can also resolve it via legal means; no matter how long it takes, it needs to be resolved on a fundamental level.
Student: With regard to the media run by Dafa disciples, in most Asian regions they haven’t developed as fast as in North America. How can we do these kinds of work better?
Master: Just do things according to the resources you have available and your current setting and situation. Master doesn’t force you to do anything and can’t direct you that specifically. With validating the Fa, you are walking your own paths, and I can’t sit here and say that you have to achieve certain things, for each situation is different. Do things based on your situation locally.
Student: Over the past two years only a small number of students have been coming to the practice site to do the exercises. Is it true that the students overseas can all do the exercises at home?
Master: Of course not. Actually, I know that the biggest reason is that our students have taken on a lot of concrete work to clarify the truth, and because they’re so busy they have less time to come out and do the exercises. If that’s the case it is normal. But if it’s not, then it’s abnormal. Find out more from those students who aren’t coming out.
Student: Japanese disciples have been interfered with during their recent activities. What should we do?
Master: Japan… well, wherever a problem comes along, that’s where you should go to clarify the truth. The Japanese spirit is to not give up until something is achieved. Dafa is good for people on all accounts, and wherever we go to clarify the truth, we are actually spreading the seeds of Goodness (Shan), clearing away the bad factors there, and bringing blessings to the lives there. People have a side that’s aware. Many things will go better when everyone cooperates with each other. I hope that you can focus less attention and energy on who has done well and who hasn’t, who’s good and who’s bad, or how this or that person is—focus all of your attention and spend all of your energy on validating the Fa. (Applause) When all of you can cooperate with each other and do well in the things to validate the Fa, that’s when you establish your mighty-virtue. When you are commenting on who’s good and who’s bad, gods won’t even look you straight on.
Of course, some people do have problems and should be criticized. We should resolve the problem out of a sense of responsibility for the Fa and do so with goodwill, making the Fa the first priority, and should absolutely avoid using an ordinary, human approach.
Student: I’m a disciple from Korea. Some fellow cultivators want to know whether it’s appropriate for some of the fellow cultivators who run a media outlet to be getting paid salaries.
Master: Here’s what I told people at the start: I said that Dafa disciples did a good job setting up media outlets, and that you need to reach the society, get into a positive cycle, become financially independent, become just like regular media outlets where you’re able to pay salaries and to meet their living needs so that they can work for it full-time—which would of course be great—and become mainstream media outlets. But until you reach that point and have funds for salaries, paying salaries with money contributed by our students is absolutely not allowed. While others are putting out for Dafa, could you be getting something for it? As a Dafa disciple you should just pitch in what you can—be it money, effort, or whatnot. If you can truly operate [like other media outlets] in society, and become profitable and pay salaries, then even if it’s not a lot, everybody can get a share, and when there is more money you can share more. If you then have more profits and can reach the level of the going salary, then your Master will be happy for you. So, the condition is that before you reach that point you can’t pay salaries using contributions from our students.
Student: The newspaper project has taken up more than fifty people. How can we plan [our resources] better? This has affected other projects.
Master: You need to coordinate these things well. The newspaper is in its early stages, so it does need help from a lot of people, but try not to waste human resources. Fifty-some people is too much, because you have to consider the fact that each person needs to walk his own path and do other things. At the beginning stage of running a newspaper things might be pretty hard, and it takes some people, but don’t have too many involved. You should coordinate these things well, because clarifying the truth in other settings is important, too.
Clarifying the truth directly and clarifying the truth via the media complement each other. You can’t rely on just one way of clarifying the truth. As you’ve seen, right now there are a variety of ways, you have come up with a lot of approaches: the Internet, television, radio, distributing VCD’s, telephone calls, letters, faxes, distributing literature, directly clarifying the truth in person, and the students in China do postering, and of course there are projects being done that jar the evil in different ways. You’re using multiple forms together.
Student: The assistants and coordinators of various places in Korea have changed too frequently, and there’s no principle being followed in appointing or removing someone. A lot of disciples who are proactively doing Fa-rectification cultivation and who are walking at the forefront were removed and replaced. Some people have already been appointed and removed twice. Some of those who were recently appointed only obtained the Fa a few months ago, and they’re busy handling human affairs all day long. Master, would you please tell me if there is a general standard for the Dafa Association’s appointments and removals? Is it appropriate for the Association Chair to just make the decision as he pleases?
Master: Now about this, I think I’ll give a suggestion to our coordinators in Korea: don’t make so many changes, as it actually dampens students’ enthusiasm and makes it harder for them to cultivate well and mature in their cultivation. Another thing is, if you’re constantly switching people like that, you are replacing students before they have matured through the tempering [effect] of Dafa work, and then the next one who’s assigned is again replaced before he matures. Dafa work is different from any kind of human work. You are finding your way through uncharted waters. Figure out how Dafa disciples’ assistants and coordinators in different regions should do their work and temper themselves to maturity, and help them to mature. No mundane bureaucrat’s or leader’s ways suit Dafa cultivation, so we have to find our own way and allow everyone to be tempered.
Of course, if the coordinators are really thinking in the interest of the students and doing so based on the Fa, and trying to help that person remove his attachment to being a leader, I won’t oppose it. But if that’s not the case then you shouldn’t do it the way you are. On the coordinator’s part, if you’re thinking, “I’ll appoint whoever listens to me, and if someone doesn’t we’ll have him removed,” then that’s being irresponsible to Dafa, and that approach isn’t fit for Dafa work. A coordinator should often exchange thoughts with students, see himself as one of the students, and have a “let’s do things well together” attitude. When students come to know you well the Dafa work will get done faster and better.
This isn’t criticism. I’m just suggesting that you discuss things with others. So as for our students, you should help our coordinators out more. And as for our coordinators, you should really increase the communication with our students—more students and a wider range of students. Make sure you don’t pose as some kind of leader. That’s not criticism. I’m just teaching you a little know-how. (Applause)
So as for Korea’s Dafa disciples, a lot of times you’ve actually done a great job, and a lot of Dafa disciples there have cultivated well. Whenever I see you do well, and, in particular, whenever you cooperate with each other as a whole and have a great impact, the multitude of gods praise you. And you’ve played an important role clarifying the truth and opposing the persecution. Capitalize on your strengths and put to use the righteous thoughts of Dafa disciples, and do even better. Your doing well in and of itself scares the evil. Master hopes that the coordinators will lead all of the students well, and hopes that the Dafa disciples will mature more fully.
Student: I want to wholly and completely assimilate to Dafa, solidly and diligently advance with purity, put forth my best effort with the three things, and not let down Master, who has mercifully and laboriously saved us.
Master: If all of you have this understanding, we will manage to do our tasks well. You mentioned how Master has mercifully and laboriously saved you, but if you ask me, I’d say you are the amazing ones, having come to where you are today. (Applause)
Just yesterday I talked about something: Do you know what kind of students I was faced with at the beginning? Whether it was in China or other regions, there were a lot of students who, the first time they entered the lecture hall, I’d look out at the audience and see them with all kinds of worldviews that they had formed among ordinary people, and hardly any of them truly had their own thoughts or could look at things with clear minds. Many people were wavering, and even when they said that Dafa was great it wasn’t from the heart. Add onto that all those notions they had, and some people had learned all kinds of qigong—so many it became addictive. Could those people cultivate into gods? As you can imagine, they were miles away. But it’s truly magnificent that you have made it to where you are today and accomplished so much.
Of course, as your Master, what kind of people do I have the highest regard for? Actually, gods see it the same way: someone whose thinking is clear—and I’m not referring to people who are cunning or clever in a trivial way, that’s not what I mean. [I’m talking about] someone who has his own righteous thoughts, has his own thinking, who thinks with his mind, and isn’t influenced by any foreign messages. His head isn’t foggy, and he’s not [like some people], where when others say something is good, they say it’s good, and if others say something is bad, they say it’s bad, as if they have no identity. But today, what I see is that you’re all rational and calm, and you do things on an even keel. The truth is, you’re no longer one of the ordinary human beings, and you couldn’t even go back anymore, you really can’t. (Applause) The difference between you and ordinary people has grown downright large.
Student: Do the old forces know about the law of mutual-generation and mutual-inhibition?
Master: Of course they do. Aren’t the old forces an expression of godhood?
Student: Master, you talked about how a lot of gods wanted to reincarnate as humans but that there weren’t enough human skins, so a lot of plants and animals are them. Since animals can’t obtain the Fa, is it true that they can only assimilate to the Fa?
Master: Yes, that’s true, but the premise is that their attitude toward Dafa has to be positive. Back when I was spreading the Fa, to ensure that in the future cosmos this Fa would never fail or wither, I had to walk a straight path, and so I set the rule that animals could not obtain the Fa. Long ago it was also the case that animals weren’t allowed to obtain the Fa. And then over the ages, gradually everything began to deviate, and animals were allowed to cultivate, and gradually more and more animals cultivated. So back when I was spreading the Fa and I laid down that animals were not to cultivate in Dafa, whoa, my goodness, all the many realms raised a ruckus. But still, rules are rules. If an animal wants to obtain the Fa, it can reincarnate as a human and I will give it the chance. But in any case, today they have arrived in this world, and in Fa-rectification, regardless of whether they are an animal, plant, or any kind of thing, I only look at their attitude toward Dafa. I can resolve everything for those who are positive toward Dafa. The most common scenario is that I have them return to wherever they came from after they assimilate. I can resolve the issue. Animals aren’t allowed to directly cultivate in Dafa, as that would be disrespectful to Dafa.
Student: In this final stage of Fa-rectification, we have a fellow cultivator whose family member (also a fellow cultivator) is going through karma elimination so severely that he requires IV’s. As a result, they can’t smoothly do work to validate the Fa, and they are affecting each other. I’d like to ask revered Master, does this stem from their own problem or interference?
Master: For cultivators, nothing is by chance. Usually it’s related to the cultivator’s process of improving. If it’s a new student or somebody who is not diligent, then that situation will come along when he doesn’t pass a test well. But if severe interference like that happens while Dafa disciples are validating the Fa, then it must be dark minions or rotten demons persecuting us. Send righteous thoughts to eliminate them. New students or students who aren’t diligent enough, you should watch and examine yourselves more with respect to this.
Student: Recently, a coalition for freedom of speech and human rights hosted a symposium in Tokyo on the current state of human rights in China and the global effort to bring Jiang to justice. Someone from the Japanese Falun Gong Association gave a speech at the conference, and other speakers included those from the global rescue effort and the Global Coalition to Bring Jiang to Justice. Some fellow cultivators feel that this course of action wasn’t quite proper.
Master: You can’t look at it that way. We should recognize the fact that ordinary people came to support us, and so hadn’t we better attend? That’d be like the world’s people wanting to validate the Fa, but us not affirming it. We’re restraining the persecution and exposing it, and when ordinary people are involved that doesn’t mean we’re getting involved in politics. When I was spreading the Fa, I didn’t look at the organization, and I didn’t look at forms, I only looked at people’s hearts. It doesn’t matter what organization it is, as long as it’s not the criminal underworld or one of those horribly base or corrupt ones, if it approaches us to support Dafa, we should give people a chance to validate the Fa—didn’t we come here to save all beings? Even if it’s individuals from those really bad groups I just mentioned who have the heart to come validate Dafa, then you should still give them a chance to, right?
But there is one thing to keep in mind: Dafa disciples absolutely can’t go and participate in some [political] thing ordinary people put together—insofar as it has nothing to do with our Falun Gong, you can’t participate in it. But if people are organizing something to support Falun Gong, then it wouldn’t be right if we didn’t go.
Student: In Zhuan Falun the dot on the Taiji is either blue, red, or black, but what’s printed on some materials is white. Is that wrong?
Master: Actually, you know, the colors in the cosmos’s dimensions—red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet—they change. The Taiji is a symbol that reflects the Daoist view of the cosmos, and so we can only say it is a symbol that represents the Daoist system. For example, the black-red and indigo-red types that I’ve talked about have the form of the Daoist system. With regard to the Taiji’s opening, I investigated it further, and it should be transparent, white, that is—the openings of both types of Taiji are white. Actually, it’s only an emblem in its manifest form.
Student: My child calls himself a Dafa disciple, and he likes the Fa, tells others about the Fa, and clarifies the truth. But he won’t take it upon himself to study the Fa or do the exercises. If I require him to, is that inappropriate?
Master: If the child is very young you can’t force him. When a child is very young he follows what adults do. When he’s older and can study the Fa by reading the books on his own, then he will be cultivating on his own.
Student: I feel that there are still some fellow cultivators in Singapore who often think about Dafa with human notions. (Master: Yes) How can we resolve this problem?
Master: Yes, Dafa disciples should base anything that they do on the Fa and think about it in terms of the Fa. There are indeed some students whose human attachments are too strong, and there are some who have done bad things behind people’s backs. I’m watching all that.
Student: When I cleanse myself before thinking of the word “Mie” to eliminate the evil, can I think of the word “Chu”?3
Master: Just do as I tell you to. No matter what you come up with, what I ask you to do is definitely the most powerful. (Applause) Some students always lack righteous thoughts, and whenever they get big-headed they come up with something different. That’s when you will be used by demons, and you will go astray and have problems. Those who have gone wrong didn’t go wrong overnight. They slowly began like that.
Student: All of Hong Kong’s students send their regards to Master. How should Dafa disciples handle activities organized by ordinary people that have political or other agendas?
Master: What ordinary people do has nothing to do with us. But when ordinary people support us by opposing the persecution of Falun Gong, or when they oppose China’s suppression of human rights, you can’t say that it has nothing to do with Falun Gong. In Hong Kong, at this time, when ordinary people invite us to be a part of things that are related to us, and if it’s peaceful and rational, then we can participate. I’m only saying that [practitioners in] Hong Kong can participate. If it has nothing to do with us and isn’t related at all, then we can’t participate. You need to be clear about this.
Last time when they were opposing Article 23, for example, when there was that grand and dynamic event, didn’t they do it for Falun Gong? (Teacher laughs) And after that took place, democracy activists, people from various community groups, people in political circles, and many people from mainstream society began carefully looking into Falun Gong. And that’s why I think Hong Kong’s general public has a clear understanding of Falun Gong now. Of course, as the saying goes, “an announcement posted everywhere still can’t make the illiterate aware,” so there are still some that are left out for sure, there are still people who don’t know the truth for sure, and that’s why you need to keep doing things to clarify the truth.
Student: How can Hong Kong play a better role using media to validate the Fa?
Master: The newspaper needs to gradually get into a positive cycle in society and become a mainstream media outlet. The media outlets run by Dafa disciples will definitely become mainstream media. (Applause) Not only will they become mainstream media, but in the future they will be the world’s biggest media. (Applause) In fact, the framework for the newspaper you run is already the largest. The media in any country are only regional. No matter how big the country is, it’s still only a national media outlet, even though the newspapers can be distributed in other countries, and none of them have that much influence.
In the past, some Chinese-language newspapers did have a wide distribution, but a lot of them were bought off later on, and now they’ve lost their moral compass and don’t dare to report many facts. If someone wants to see truthful reports he has to read the media that you run.
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