An "Iron Rose" Blossoming in Cold Winter

In November 2003, I was hospitalized in the Maoqiao Hospital of Nanning City, Guangxi Province, which was the designated prison hospital of the province. Iron railings, iron-grated windows and iron doors reinforced the prison section of the hospital on the third floor. On the morning of my arrival I heard an indistinct voice. Listening closely, I distinguished that someone was reciting the Master Li's poems:

"As gong surges forth, evil spirits wail and scream. The Dafa disciples ascend to the heights of the heavens" (The Foretelling).

After that I heard the voice reciting continuously from morning to night, every day. I could tell most of it to be:

"If you are not afraid, the factor that would make you afraid will cease to exist." [Eliminate Your Last Attachment(s)]

To live with no pursuits,
To die with no regrets;
All excessive thoughts extinguished,
Cultivating Buddhahood is not difficult.

[Hongyin, Unofficial Translation]

I also heard the voice reciting sections from Zhuan Falun, including, "Your Master Consciousness Needs to be Strong" and "Your Thoughts Have to be Proper."

In time, I learned the story of the young woman who continually recited Teacher's words.

Miss Lin Tiemei (in Chinese, Tiemei means an "iron rose"), around 30, was a graduate student at a medical school in Beijing. She looked very young but was emaciated. She was arrested in May 2002 when she went to Tiananmen Square to appeal for Falun Dafa. When she was held in Beijing, she refused to give her name and address despite being cruelly tortured by the police in many ways, including being tortured with the electrical tiger bench (a special device for torture). She was also brutally beaten and her mouth was cut so badly that it required stitches. As a result of this injury she could not speak clearly. The policemen judged from her accent that Miss Lin was from Guangxi Province, so they transferred her to the Guangxi Women's Forced Labor Camp.

It was said that Tiemei had been on a hunger strike for over a year, to protest at her illegal detention. Two months ago she has been transferred to the prison hospital for force-feeding because her life was in danger because of cruel torture that she had suffered in the labour camp. To avoid any trouble, the guards at the prison hospital shackled her feet with heavy fetters and handcuffed her hands to the iron railings at the head of the bed. She was restricted to the bed for force-feeding and was not allowed to use the toilet. She could not clean herself or have baths unless the guards were willing to unlock the shackles. The labor camp assigned two criminals to guard her, but they did not regard her as human being and often slapped her in the face for no reason (it was not long before, that Ms. Lin had appealed against the violence to the superiors and the labor camp assigned another two criminals to guard her because they wanted to save face). The fetters were so heavy that her ankles were crushed. Every night after the forced feeding she was injected against her will with tranquilizing drugs. It was said that when she was awake she always tried to sit in the lotus position with her body stretching backward so that she could hold her shackled palm erect in front of her chest. At the same time she didn't stop reciting Falun Dafa articles or the Fa-rectification verses. It was really amazing that she maintained such a great power to recite the Fa without any food or drink for such a long time.

When her family came to see her, they usually had tears in their eyes. Her supervisor from the medical school in Beijing also flew in to see her. Many of her friends and relatives worried about her but could do nothing to help. The prison doctors and other people all said to each other, "They committed no crimes, and they just believe in the principle of Truthfulness, Compassion and Tolerance. How can it be possible to change a person's personal beliefs through arrest, torture and coercion? She should have been released a long time ago under such circumstances." "They do not give in to high pressure, force and violence. Falun Dafa practitioners are even more persistent than Sister Jiang and Liu Hulan (two Chinese woman heroes who gave their lives for other people). Could we tolerate such suffering if we were thrown into such circumstances?" It was clear that all the people in the hospital who knew her story admired her very much.

Later I left the prison hospital, but I will never forget Lin Tiemei, who I have never met except through hearing her voice. She was like a rose forged out of diamond, with a wonderful fragrance that will never disappear from my heart. In her, people can see the aura of an enlightened woman in this ordinary world, where people fight for material benefits and don't know what true belief means.

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