As an assyrian born in Jerusalem, my natural environment led me to these questions. However, I was not satisfied with the answers that I received, although I went to a religious school run by German nuns, where religion was a subject of study as usual. The guidance was vague and abstract, and I was looking for spiritual facts specific. I had a stubborn feeling of emptiness and questioning in my interior that could not be resolved.
In 1970, I forgot these questions for a while as I moved to the united States with my family, due to the growing conflict in the Middle East. I finished the university and started to work in the business world in New York. For the year 2001, I became a successful business woman, working for a renowned financial institution in the World Trade Center.
On the surface it seemed that he had everything. However, I always felt that something was missing; that there must be something more. I wanted to know the truth, so I decided to continue my spiritual journey with determination. The yoga was my next attempt to find answers.
The yoga gave me a better health, and eased my spirit temporarily, but I couldn’t answer my deeper questions. Worse still, due to the intensive training of yoga -sometimes up to six hours a day – I hurt myself severely in the knee and had to have surgery. After the surgery, I was devastated when my doctor told me I had to stop doing yoga and cross your legs in meditation. I felt that I had worked so hard, and that I had not taken any part.
Bottoming out and rebounding
One day, on the way to the office, still feeling pain from the operation, I struggled to overcome my feelings of hopelessness. I felt trapped by the constraints of my body hurt.
“What’s the point?”, I thought. “My life is empty, my body is broken and I don’t know what to do about it”. Just then, something on the floor in front of my office building caught my attention. It was a flyer that described a meditation practice called Falun Dafa, also known as Falun Gong, a discipline of self-cultivation practice of the Buddha School, rooted in traditional chinese culture. I read the introduction and thought, “This could be what I was looking for”.
I dialed the number of the steering wheel and I found that to be a practitioner of Falun Dafa, lived nearby and taught the exercises of the practice in their home free of charge.
I found a copy of “Zhuan Falun” on the web page, which described the principles and the practice of Falun Gong. To my surprise, I could not stop reading the book. The guiding principles of Truth, Benevolence and Tolerance, the evolution of the universe, the relationships between all things, all that resounded in me. I could not believe that the book would answer my questions. It was so deep, but simple and direct.
When I did the exercises of Falun Dafa and meditation for the first time, I felt a strong energy arise all over my body. “Wow,” I thought. I could not believe how strong I felt the energy, and also I could feel a field of light. I was surprised and I was thrilled and could hardly believe what was happening, but in the end I felt calm and happy.
A path of hope
From the day that I found the wheel on the ground, have spent 16 years in a blink of an eye. This year I turn 62 years old, but people around me often say that I look younger. It is difficult to describe the physical and mental benefits that I received by following this spiritual path. Shortly after practicing Falun Dafa, the pain of the operation of knee disappeared and I no longer felt weak or fragile. I would sit in a cross legged position for an hour.
Before, I had many problems with my teeth. I had to go to the dentist to get a regular deep cleaning to keep my teeth from falling. The dentist tried to convince me that I did a surgery of gums, otherwise I could lose my teeth. But after practicing Falun Gong for three months, my gum disease disappeared. My dentist told me that if I don’t extract the teeth, it would lose all in 10 years. In 16 years, I had no problems. Now, every time I go to the dentist, he is astonished and says to me: “Your teeth should already have disappeared.”
These physical changes were relatively minor compared with the changes in my character. Shortly after beginning to practice, for the first time, I had the feeling of being whole and complete; the empty persistent disappeared. Many people commented that it had changed a lot. My co-workers and customers said that I looked different, that my face looked different, more calm and relaxed. The tension was gone. They said “I Want to do whatever you’re doing.” Some of them said that they liked being close to me and made efforts to spend time with me because it made them feel more at ease.
People used to tell me that I was very competitive. This is common in the area of real estate where I work now. To understand and follow the teaching of Falun Dafa – Truth, compassion and Tolerance – because I felt no motivation to compete for personal gain. I realized that it is more important to be honest and truthful, and I became more compassionate. I began to try to understand the situation from the point of view of the other person. I started to see me and feeling more at ease. Not only that, due to my spiritual void had been filled, I was able to stop smoking and drinking with little effort.
I used to be very critical and could not tolerate the faults of other people. Now, I’ve become more patient and understanding and I began to resolve some of the conflicts that existed for a long time now. In the past, I felt very angry with my father, and didn’t talk for more than 25 years. Before she died, we are reconciled. When I forgave him, I felt true harmony in my heart. The sense of peace and forgiveness was so deep in me, no I never thought that I could achieve a reconciliation as well. It was a wonderful feeling.
Gaining clientele with honesty
In my field, a lot of people would do anything for money. I used to think that a person had to strive tirelessly to earn money and compete with others to claim their position in this world. But now I switched completely from view. I have come to believe that I will receive what I deserve in life, neither more nor less. It is a principle of Falun Dafa: there is no need to pursue stubbornly the success; as long as you are conscientious and do your job properly, the results will come naturally. If I can concentrate on my work and be honest and considerate, then, without being chased, I can gain clients that others can’t. The feeling of peace it gives me to live according to this principle it makes me feel happy and relaxed.
In business, it is common for people to develop strategies and try to manipulate others for your benefit. In meetings or when you make deals, there can be many machinations. But I can keep calm in those moments. Many people have told me that they also want that ability and I have been asked how I do it.
My clients know that the guiding principles of my life are Truth, Benevolence, Tolerance, and know we don’t cheat, so I like to do business with me. In this way, without causing harm to others or to my own conscience, I found the professional success and financial. At the same time, taking the material success more to the light and I worry less by accumulating possessions than in the past.
The last 16 years have been an incredible journey, and I am very grateful for having finally discovered the path that my soul was looking for.
By Nadia Ghattas