For Years I Have Supported My Wife in Her Practice of Falun Gong

A letter written by a Falun Gong Practitioner's husband in China to the Leaders of the Kunming Pharmaceutical Factory and the Kunming Qianjin Wooden Furniture Factory

My name is Tan Zesheng, and I am the husband of a Falun Gong practitioner called Zhang Jufang. Today, I am writing to you to say that I have always supported my wife's practice of Falun Gong, and that I hope you will understand the true nature of Falun Gong.

I was born into a well-known family that respected and believed in Buddha. My father was a devout Buddhist who accumulated much virtue and did good work all his life. My mother is over ninety years old and even now she holds Buddhist prayer beads (similar to rosary beads) in her hands and chants prayers to Buddha Amitabha. With the influence from my family, and although I experienced many tribulations for over half a century, I still believe in the heavenly principle that good and evil shall be accordingly rewarded or punished.

In 1996, there was a Falun Gong practice site at the Kunming Pharmaceutical Factory, which was close to where I worked. There were hundreds of people practicing the Falun Gong exercises there every morning. Before long, a Falun Gong practitioner gave me a copy of the main Falun Gong book Zhuan Falun. The founder of Falun Gong, Teacher Li Hongzhi distinctly stated in the book that practitioners must not retaliate when beaten or abused by others. I worked in the factory security section, and I felt it was very difficult to live up to that requirement, so I decided that I would start the practice after I retired.

I gave Zhuan Falun to my wife to read. She had suffered from inflammation of the ear from an early age and as a result was hard of hearing. She had numerous other illnesses and since 1974 had been considered to be an invalid. The only place she could get a job was as a laborer at the Kunming Qianjin Wooden Furniture Factory. She always thought that life had been very unfair to her. After she read Zhuan Falun, she understood the meaning and purpose of her life in a way that she had not previously. The three words Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance entered her mind, and she realized the necessity of adopting "Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance" as a standard. She felt that she had been looking for this book--Zhuan Falun--for her whole life.

From then on, my wife diligently practiced Falun Gong, and gradually, her health improved immensely and her attitude became much calmer. She did not grumble about her work anymore, and she completed all the work assigned to her well and appropriately. Around the time that I saw that the health of my wife was the embodiment of "Falun Dafa is good," the Chinese government began suppressing the practice on July 20, 1999 and the populace was banned from practicing Falun Gong.

I recollect that on the afternoon of July 22, my wife went to the municipal government office to help the government understand that those who practice Falun Gong are kind-hearted and that Falun Gong teaches people to be good. In less than half an hour, many police officers arrived and took her, and other practitioners that had gone to appeal, away in a large bus to the Xishan Region Number One Secondary School. After being detained and interrogated, the practitioners were sent to the Panlong Training School where they were repeatedly subjected to mental and physical abuse until after midnight when they were finally allowed to return home. On July 23, the Central Television station (CCTV) began broadcasting slander, fabricated lies, and rumours about Falun Gong.

At about 10 a.m. on October 28, 1999, police officers from the Wuhua Branch searched our home, confiscated any Dafa books and Dafa exercise tapes that they could find, arrested my wife, and detained her at the Wuhua Branch to be interrogated till eight o'clock that night. Some time after nine the next evening, some police officers from the local Household Registration Section and members of the Residents Committee came to our house to tell my wife she was prohibited from practicing Falun Gong. My wife told them that she would continue her cultivation in such a good practice. They asked her for how much longer she intended to practice. My wife answered that she would practice Falun Gong until the day she died. When they heard that, they became very angry. That night, my wife was arrested and taken to the Taihe Police Station and detained for forty-eight hours. The Section leader of the Security Section at my wife's work unit was assigned to stand as guarantor for her release. My son and I had to guarantee that she would not leave home. At about 2 p.m. on October 30, a group of people calling themselves regional leader, centre chief, and so on came to our house and left a police officer standing on guard until midnight. On October 31, the Residents Committee and the officers from the Security Section at my wife's work unit were ordered to watch her for one week. Only after the officers from the Panlong Region had interrogated her was this supervision cancelled.

Around 2 p.m. on December 22, 1999, my wife was suddenly arrested at her friend's home and taken to the police station. After suffering much mental and physical abuse she was sent to the Panlong Number One Detention Centre sometime after 1 a.m. After five months of detention there, she was transferred to the Female Forced Labour Camp, Yunnan Province, for two years of detention.

I asked the police officers at the Panlong Branch Police Station why people weren't allowed to practice Falun Gong. Falun Gong abides by the principles of Zhen, Shan, and Ren (Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance), and teaches people to be good, so why was it not allowed to be practiced? I also mentioned that my wife was arrested at her friend's house on the grounds that she had violated public order! What public order had she violated? The police officers at Panlong Branch replied that if I refused to accept the explanation, I could appeal to the Labor Education Committee, Kunming City. I located the Labour Education Committee in Kunming City, and asked them where my wife was being detained. They informed me that if I was not happy with her sentence, I could appeal for reconsideration. I told them that if this was a place with justice, my wife would not have been arrested, where else could I go to appeal? No one there could answer me.

On May 15, 2000, my wife was sent to the First Brigade of the Yunnan Female Forced Labour Camp. When the police officers from the Camp came to our house, I told them that if a nation was devoid of kind-hearted people, happy families, and law-abiding citizens, what would the country become? I said that they had broken up a happy family and had made false charges against us. My wife was innocent. Although I did not practice Falun Gong, I had followed the standards of Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance to be a kind-hearted citizen and there was nothing wrong with that.

On May 24, 2001, Deputy Director Wei, and Section Leader Yang, of the Female Forced Labour Camp, Yunnan Province, along with the officer from the Security Section of my wife's work unit sent my wife to brainwashing sessions to try to "transform" her [to force her give up the practice and denounce Falun Gong]. My wife already believed in Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance, what other transformation did they require?

On July 28, 2001, my wife wrote a letter to Section Leader Yang, of the Yunnan Female Forced Labour Camp. In the letter she explicitly mentioned that to believe in Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance was not wrong and that she would never abandon the practice of Falun Gong!

One morning in March 2003, while my wife was distributing materials that gave the facts about the persecution at Macuncai City, a Public security officer handcuffed her and took her home. The Dafa materials, her tapes, and her tape recorder were confiscated and my wife was taken to the Guandu Branch Office. Being unable to find any fault with her, they sent her to the Kunming City Number One Detention Centre for one and a half months. During this period of time, the Guandu Branch Office police officers spoke to me and asked me to cooperate with them. Since I did not practice Falun Gong, as soon as I received any Falun Gong materials, I should immediately hand them over to them. A lower ranking police officer said to me that if I discovered any Falun Gong activities, I should immediately report them to him. I said by doing that, were they not asking me to be a traitor? Persecuting Dafa will lead to hell and I absolutely would not do such a thing!

On May 9, 2003, the police from Guandu Branch sent my wife to the Yunnan Province Female Forced Labour Camp, and during her medical examination, it was discovered that her temperature was 37.5  C [99.5  F]. As it was during the time of the SARS epidemic, the Camp refused to accept her. A few police officers sent her home.

I love my wife and I deeply respect her belief in Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance, and especially her steadfast, unyielding, and indomitable spirit. In the past few years, when Falun Gong practitioners were being persecuted, I sheltered her during her trials and hardships, and although they are not worth mentioning, I reckon were very valuable experiences for me. If only every Chinese had just that bit of compassionate reasoning, had that bit of justice, and would say the following few words of the truth: "All of you must stop persecuting Falun Gong, as Falun Gong teaches everyone to be good."

I have been very fortunate in this life to have a wife that practices Falun Gong. From her, I can see the beautiful and happy future of the citizens of China, and the fine and glorious future of the Chinese nation. I say here that no one should persecute the Dafa practitioners, for if they do, they are in fact committing a crime against the gods!

Let us all say: "Falun Dafa is good! Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance are good! Teacher Li Hongzhi is good! Dafa practitioners are good!"

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