On May 9, 2004, to celebrate the 12th anniversary of Falun Dafa's wide spread throughout the world, Falun Gong practitioners from every corner of Taiwan gathered in Kaohsiung City in Southern Taiwan, and held a series of celebratory events such as a sightseeing event, photo exhibition, group exercises demonstration, dance performance and concert. A grand parade consisting of three thousand people peaked the series of celebrations with its great momentum and splendid content.
|Fan dance||Greetings from the audience|
|The Deputy Mayor of Kaohsiung gives a speech||Exposing torture methods|
|Young practitioners||Falun Dafa has received 1223 proclamations/awards from around the world|
Different from past years, this year's celebration of the World Falun Dafa Day was moved to Kaohsiung City for the first time. And sixteen well-designed elements were added in the parade to display the wonderfulness of Falun Dafa. They were, a waist drum team, float, big model of Falun Gong book Zhuan Falun, lotus dance, coloured ribbon dance, flag squad, fan dance, group picture of Falun Dafa's wide spread to the world, picking tea dance, lion dance, balloon squad, pinwheel squad, huge model of a peach to symbolise longevity, sword squad, angel team and a display showing that Falun Gong has received 1223 proclamations from around the world.
|Book Zhuan Falun||Falun Dafa's wide spread to the world|
|Falun Gong exercise demo on the float||Waist Drum Team|
|Spectator holding a balloon||Chorus of "Coming for you"|
Some of those marching in the parade were holding pictures illustrating all the variety of torture methods that Jiang's political group has been using to maltreat and kill Falun Gong practitioners in China, and pictures of some of the victims such asa picture of a Chinese Bride, and Ms. Zhangqiong's family picture. In addition, banners reading, "Bring Jiang Zemin to Justice," were also displayed and Falun Gong practitioners appealed to the world's people to pay attention to the inhumane treatment that Falun Gong practitioners in China are now suffering, hoping to end this brutal suppression and persecution soon.
I asked an elderly gentleman in the audience if he was aware of the persecution against Falun Gong in China. He said that he was a veteran and visited China often, he knew very well about Jiang's political group's tricks of persecuting people on purpose without any reason at all. Another gentleman joined the conversation and said that after he watched Falun Gong's truth-clarification VCD, he has come to understand this was an unreasonable persecution, and he has recommended his father to learn Falun Gong.
The grand parade took the main road in the centre of the city, and spanned a few kilometres. Many civilians watched and applauded.
A lady in the audience said, "I only heard about Falun Gong before, but I didn't realise there were so many people practising it."
Since Jiang's regime started the persecution on July 20, 1999, the number of practitioners of Falun Gong in Taiwan has been constantly growing. According to conservative estimate, there are nearly 1000 practice sites all over Taiwan, and the number of practitioners is over 300,000. They come from every level and every corner of the society. For instance, more than twenty state-run organisations in Taiwan have legal organisations for Falun Gong, including many departments, ministries and committees, for example, the Agricultural Committee in the Executive Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the International Trading Bureau of the Economics Department, the Meteorological Bureau of the Ministry of Transportations, and Tax Department of Ministry of Finance.
Many three-generation families participated in the parade. In the parade, there were elderly people, lovely young children, infants , and mothers who held a banner reading, "Children know how to behave after learning Falun Gong." Despite the burning sun, they chose to share the wonderfulness of Falun Dafa to the society on Mother's Day.
A mother in the parade who came from Taipei said, "Falun Gong's principles of 'Truthfulness, Compassion and Tolerance," are the hope for the world peace and the improvement of the human moral standard. To help my children grow up properly, I chose Falun Gong."
There were many parents, schoolteachers, school principals as well the Taiwan Education System who recognise Falun Gong's principles "Truthfulness, Compassion and Forbearance" and their benefits to education, therefore, in many areas "Falun Gong seminars for schoolteachers" have been held in succession to help schoolteachers better understand Falun Gong. Many kindergartens, elementary schools, middle schools and colleges have begun to teach students Falun Gong. To date, more than thirty universities including Taiwan University, Tsinghua University, Transportation University, Central University, Politics University and Normal University have Falun Gong Associations with members from faculty, graduate and undergraduate students. Many schoolteachers and students became healthy both mentally and physically from practising Falun Gong.
Falun Gong practitioners did not mind holding the activity under the burning Sun, they kept everything orderly and waved to audiences warmly, wishing all, "Happy Mother's Day! Falun Dafa is good!" the audiences returned with warm applause. The whole site was peaceful and joyous.
Some civilians said, "Walking so long under such high temperatures and under the burning sun without getting sick, this practice must be great." And started to ask about where they could learn Falun Gong.
According to a investigatory report published on December 28, 2002 conducted by Hu Yu-Whuei, Assistant Professor in Economics Department of Taiwan University, after beginning to practise Falun Gong, 72% used their health card only once in a whole year, which was almost half of the frequency than before. In addition, practising Falun Gong has remarkable effects in helping people to quit unhealthy habits and release stress. Therefore, Falun Gong practitioners in Taiwan have often been invited to many prisons to use Falun Gong's principles "Truthfulness, Compassion and Forbearance" to educate the prisoners, and the effects have been remarkable.
Because Falun Gong is very popular in Taiwan, the Taiwan government and every political party recognised the achievements of Falun Gong in purifying people's hearts and improving people's health. President Chen Shui-bian, Vice President Annette Lu, Secretary General of Executive Yuan, You Xikun, President of the Legislature Yuan Wang Jin-pyng, Kuomintang President Lien Chan, Taipei Mayor Ma Ying-jeou, Kaohsiung Mayor Frank Hsieh and Deputy Mayor Lin Yun-chien, many county executives and mayors as well as many county and city legislators have been very supportive to Falun Gong. Besides expressing their sincere appreciation, Falun Gong practitioners returned the benefits of cultivation practice to society. In contrast, the former Chinese President Jiang Zemin has launched a brutal persecution since July 1999. against good people who believe in "Truthfulness, Compassion and Forbearance".
This celebration event in Southern Taiwan in honor of the annual "World Falun Dafa Day" on May 13th is to thank the Founder of Falun Gong, Master. Li Hongzhi, for introducing Falun Gong to the public for free since May 1992. Since then, Master Li has helped over 100 million people in over 60 countries to attain a new life.
The event organisers originally applied for a parade permit for 1000 people from the city police department, however, the number of people registered for participation later amounted to 3000. The organisers then reapplied for another permit. To everyone's surprise, the city police department approved it without hesitation and said, "There is no problem for any activities held by Falun Gong."
Just like what the Deputy Mayor of Kaohsiung City, Mr. Lin Yun-chien, has said, "The persecution against Falun Gong by the former leader of China is a misunderstanding of human nature's pursuit of 'Truthfulness, Compassion and Forbearance," it is also to slander people who seek the Tao [or way]. We believe that parades like this will help more people understand the true beautiful nature of Falun Gong."
The Director of the Taiwan Falun Gong Association expressed his regret to the fact that the former leader of China Jiang Zemin orchestrated the persecution of Falun Gong in 1999 out of jealousy over its huge popularity and consequently many Falun Gong practitioners have died as a result of torture while in police custody. The Director also appealed to all circles of the society to support Falun Gong practitioners' basic human rights, bring the perpetrators to justice and end the persecution immediately.
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