Article from German Newspaper "Chamer Zeitung": An Exercise From the Far East - Harmony of Body and Mind

10th November 2003:

Last Saturday, a wave from Asia swept the city hall. During this activity of promoting the cultivation of Falun Dafa (also known as Falun Gong) we hoped to melt any preconceived ideas about Falun Dafa and to correct misplaced news that exists in people’s minds. Performances and practitioners’ statements made the evening a success.

Falun Dafa, a traditional meditation cultivation method, appeared in China in 1992. It has nothing to do with any cult, nor has it any political or religious purpose. Maximally assimilating to “Truth, Compassion and Tolerance”, has let more than a (hundred) million people all over the world closely walk together to “cultivate their hearts.” However, in July 1999 Jiang Zemin, the Chairman of China at the time, prohibited the movement. It is believed that Jiang’s aim was to stop the number of practitioners becoming a threat to the Communist party. Also, he attacked Falun Gong because he was afraid of losing power. This was the starting point of a thorough crackdown and large-scale arrest of Falun Gong practitioners, with some being sent to jail, persecuted and tortured, as well being deprived of personal freedom.

Though political circles and numerous human rights organisations have intervened to stop the persecution, thousands of cases of violations against the most basic human rights have been recorded, yet this state terrorism has not come to an end. Now, the prime culprit and leader of the persecution, the former Chairman of China, has been sued in more and more countries all over the world. Then, what on earth did those practitioners do to cause them such suppression? They tried very hard to be honest and friendly and get along with people around them and to consider other people first in everything, together with practising Qigong exercises. Falun Dafa includes five sets of exercises. The exercises have nice names that make one feel comfortable, for example, “Buddha Showing a Thousand Hands” and “Penetrating the Two Cosmic Extremes”. A gentle, slow and fluent set of exercises that suit people of different ages and are simple and easy to learn. One can either practise alone or in a group. Many practitioners recounted their experiences of physical and moral improvements. In the first few years, Falun Gong was recommended even in its original country, but now China uses one fourth of its finances to persecute this movement, which it once highly praised and approved.

During the social evening, another important point clarified was the so-called self-immolation of practitioners. Western experts felt that the footage broadcast on Chinese national TV was a pre-planned misleading message. In China, the information Chinese people received was filtered and suppressed. Propaganda badly quoted out of context about “the outside world”, and the suppression is not limited to this, as is the Internet.

As a group, peacefully holding flags to resist violations and persecution is not an easy thing. Truth clarification activities like this one held in the City Hall are urgently needed and necessary. Meanwhile, support is being received. Though under suppression, Falun Dafa still demonstrates its charm to people with various kinds of dances, and music presented to the audience one after another, with only one purpose: to reach harmony with oneself and one’s surroundings.

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