An Arizona mother was heartbroken when her son was diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Two years later, however, her 8-year-old boy changed, and became more social, content, and happy. She credits her son’s positive changes to the ancient meditation of “Falun Dafa”—a spiritual practice that encourages its practitioners to be truthful, compassionate, and tolerant.
Diana is an aspiring farmer of a 3.5-acre orchard, while her husband is a restaurateur. The couple are proud parents of five amazing children. Diana told NTD that she felt that one of her children, Brady, was struggling while growing up.
“I had already had another son so I knew he was different, but I made excuses that ‘everyone is different; he will mature later; he’s just got a lot of quirks,’” she said. “But I knew there was something more to it and that he was just not a very happy kid. I just knew that he was struggling with the ways of life in general.”
Brady’s autism diagnosis at the age of 6 broke her heart because she felt that it made it more real. However, the year 2013 brought good news for her entire family. Diana started learning the meditation discipline Falun Dafa, (also known as Falun Gong).
“Along with the five exercises in the practice, and with the core values of Truthfulness, Compassion and Tolerance, there is the idea of putting others first. The principles were amazing to me and really gave me a good base of what I need to change in my life,” said Diana.
Diana decided she would let all her children practice Falun Gong, including Brady. She thought that out of all her children, Brady would be the last one to grasp the practice.
“I thought he wouldn’t understand it. I also thought that the idea of ‘putting others first’ was not something he could comprehend, nor would he be able to be patient enough to do the exercises,” she said.
So instead, she showed the exercises to her 6-year-old daughter first. Surprisingly, Brady became interested too and began doing the exercises along with them.
Not only did Brady learn the exercises, he also started reading Zhuan Falun—Falun Dafa’s principal text, which guides the practitioner to live by high moral standards.
“He took it right off the table and I would find him on the floor reading,” Diana recalled. “It totally blew my mind.”
“I learned quickly that after all these challenging years I thought I knew this kid and all his capacity, what he can and can’t do, what will set him off, all his limits etc. But I obviously knew nothing about this kid’s spirit and determination,” she said.
Brady loves Falun Dafa. “He knew there was serenity from this practice but couldn’t explain it. He knew it was right, but didn’t care to say why or how.”
Within a few months of doing the exercises and reading Zhuan Falun, Brady transformed into a completely different person. Moreover, his severe sensitivity to gluten miraculously disappeared. His recovery left everyone surprised.
Before learning the practice, Diana would be concerned whenever she brought Brady out to public places for fear that something could trigger him to have a meltdown.
His condition also caused difficulties in learning.
“This had affected his ability to handle things and function normally at school,” Diana said.
However, after learning the practice, Brady was able to pay attention in class and was able to maintain proper eye contact with his teachers and other people.
“He became very content. He was more reasonable, he was thoughtful. He became more social at school,” she said.
“The best part of this change is that he’s still himself but just happier,” Diana said. “It is like he was finally ‘unlocked.’”
As he conducted himself with Falun Dafa’s core principles of “Truthfulness, Compassion, and Tolerance,” he was able to understand others better and put himself in others’ shoes.
“His beautiful and sweet personality is still him but now others can see it too. He’s social. Although he still prefers to be around animals more than people, he’s social when he needs to be. It’s no longer an issue of explaining him to the world but explaining the world to him,” she said.
Thanks to Falun Dafa, Brady is growing up to be a healthy, happy person, and his family is feeling immensely blessed for the positive changes in him.
Now, Brady is no longer on any therapy or medication and gets to enjoy life like other kids. “He is now 12 and has been right by my side in doing this practice, and we have grown together in understanding both our lives and our purpose in it,” said Diana.
Amazed by Brady’s tremendous improvement, “his teachers even encourage his meditation and even remind him to keep doing it.”
The changes that Brady has gone through are so incredible that one can’t help but admire the healing power of Falun Dafa. This happy mom absolutely recommends the practice to other parents out there and says, “I think if the parents could do it with the kids that’s best.”
Photo courtesy of NYCC Falun Dafa.
Editor’s Note: Falun Gong or Falun Dafa is a cultivation practice of mind and body that teaches truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance as a way to improve health and moral character, as well as to attain spiritual wisdom. For more information about the practice or to download Zhuan Falun, visit: www.falundafa.org. All books, exercise music, resources, and instructions are available completely free of charge. To learn more about the persecution Falun Gong practitioners are subject to in China, visit http://faluninfo.net/