A News Commentator's Story

A Toronto Practitioner

PureInsight | August 4, 2003

[PureInsight.org] As many of you know, for most of the last two years, with the help of a small team, I have been researching, writing, and on-camera anchoring a weekly 15-minute News Review for FGMTV. FGMTV stands for Feng Guang Ming, or Illumination TV. Our program has been broadcast twice each Sunday night on NTDTV by satellite throughout North America, and also published on the Internet at FGMTV.net. Jared Madsen in Minnesota has used it as part of a half hour program called Pure Heart, Clear Mind, which is being distributed free of charge to about 50 community television stations all over the United States. Jared says that each month at least one more station wants to use the program. David in Taiwan recently advised us that they use the News Review to teach English.

Feedback from Jared's audiences includes Chinese people at his workplace who have said they initially had a very negative impression of Falun Gong. But, the program changed their negative thoughts to positive feelings towards the practice and the program helped them have a better understanding on what is really happening in China.

What a privilege to be part of such a worldwide truth-clarifying effort. I am very thankful.

And what a mountain it is to climb each week. Those forces do all in their power to distract, delay, and interrupt. They can keep me from finishing the script until the last possible minute, and also prevent me from doing exercises on the day of the recording, so that my performance is not as sparkling as it could be. They have even interfered with our cameras during recording, but we have overcome them. On one session, the camera went black. We sent forth righteous thoughts for five minutes and half the picture came back – in stripes. We sent forth more righteous thoughts and the whole picture returned. When I sat down again in front of the camera, I could smell something burning and asked Joe if there was something wrong with the lights. He checked, and then started to laugh, "Nothing wrong with the lights." He went on to say, "I was thinking of burning up the demons that were interfering with our camera. It worked."

When you talk about a profound realization or understanding out loud, it often sounds very small. A few months ago, I suddenly saw what an enormous world-wide effort goes into doing this one 15-minute program. It starts from those in China who risk their lives to send emails about how they are being persecuted, and how they hang up banners to broadcast the truth. Then there are those in the other 59 countries who sit in front of Chinese embassies and consulates, often 24 hours a day, to appeal. There are people who spend hours making beautiful banners and flags for parades and events in universities and cities, and those who make costumes and have learned to dance, sing, or make music. All of this, so that they can show people the beauty of Dafa. Then there are those who take precious holiday time to drive, walk, or cycle to rescue their relatives and loved ones. And, there are those on the TV teams who photograph, video, edit, record, upload, download and broadcast the precious truth of Falun Dafa to the people of the world who are longing to be saved. It is a wonderful example of how the whole body works together.

Master has pointed out that over the course of the last four years, we have gone from being on the defensive to being on the offensive, with our lawsuits charging that evil one and his helpers with genocide and crimes against humanity. It has been one of the great pleasures to work on the program, and to see how we have gone from SOS walks to winning lawsuits. This truly is a reflection of the whole situation.

At the beginning of July, which was less than three weeks ago, NTDTV went global. Our 15 minutes of English programming that was shown twice each week was now needing to be changed. This was because audiences want up to the minute news. And, so we are in the process of putting together a different type of program – more of a weekly documentary on Westerners' cultivation stories. We are calling it, "I Think I Was Chinese." What a great title to express how many of us feel about our past lives, and even our experiences in this life.

My own earliest recollection, at about age three, was looking at photographs of Chinese paintings in my grandfather's encyclopaedia, and not being able to read, just "explaining" what I thought the text said under each photograph. When I visited the beautiful mountains of Guilin in southern China in 1983, I felt as if I had come home, and cried for three hours. I cried so intensely that I burst a blood vessel in my eye. So, I am really looking forward, over the next months, to talk with other Western disciples who feel a connection with China and Chinese culture. If you would like to share your story with the world, please come and say hello to me here at the conference, so that we can exchange email addresses and arrange for you to be photographed or interviewed. If you know of someone in your home town who has an interesting story and would be willing to share it, please give them my name and ask them to get in touch with me. If you cannot remember my name, then just ask them to get in touch with a Canadian or Toronto contact person, and they will forward the message to me.

Master has said that everything for our cultivation is there just in the doing of three things. That being studying the Fa, validating the Fa and sending forth righteous thoughts. What a journey this television program has been for me. One of the most difficult things is to read out loud, some of the torture details. We often have to stop tape because my voice breaks. How to keep one's heart unmoved? Then, one day, I walked past a movie house in Toronto's downtown Chinatown and there was a poster of two of the most beautiful people against a backdrop of China. It is the best of Chinese culture, and my heart was moved by their beauty. The TV programs' embody both the ugliness of the persecution and the beauty of Dafa and traditional Chinese culture. It's an opportunity and challenge to rise above all emotion to reach the solemn countenance of a Buddha, unmovable.

Like those who endure wind, rain, snow, sleet and burning sun in front of Chinese embassies and consulates, I am learning to endure the pressure of not only a full-time office job with its constant deadlines, but also the weekly deadline of producing the program. When I was advised a couple of weeks ago that it was to be changed, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to take a long overdue holiday. The idea was to clear my head so that any ideas Master might have for the new program could freely come into my mind. I arranged to rent a car and planned to drive north into the countryside for three days. Basically, I wanted to stare at a blue lake, smell the pine trees, read Zhuan Falun and the new lectures, and do the exercises. Being involved with the TV team, I thought perhaps a visit to a summer theatre festival comedy show would be a good way to begin -- with a good laugh. So I drove two hours north of Toronto to Orillia and rented a cheap, but fairly clean motel room after buying a ticket for a seat in the second row for the evening performance.

Well, Master has said that time has been speeded up. First of all, it rained so hard on part of the drive up that it was difficult to see the road. (Good analogy, as I cannot see the road ahead properly!) When I put the key in the door of the motel room, I noticed that there were numerous little beings, sort of like crescent-shaped fireflies, only smaller, with very large eyes, all along the door frame. And they were all watching me. I went into the room and quickly closed the door so they could not follow me. I walked over to the window overlooking the lake, which was gray, not blue, because the sky was totally covered with clouds. I looked at the balcony and thought, "Gosh, the paint is peeling up all over the balcony floor. Then I looked closer only to discover that what I thought was paint peeling up, was a couple of hundred of those little crescent-shaped firefly-type beings. And they were all looking at me to see what I was going to do!

Quickly, I changed into clean clothes for the evening and headed for the Swiss Chalet Restaurant. I am not very adventurous when it comes to food. There was such a line up that I ended up doing the take-out thing and eating dinner out of a container, sitting in the car park of Canadian Tire Company instead of being waited on in the restaurant. Food does not mean the same as it used to.

The theatre performances were excellent. But theatre also does not mean the same as it used to. First intermission, I headed outside for my bottle of water in the rented car. I just stopped in the middle of the parking lot and thought, "What am I doing here?" I drove directly back to the motel, did the standing exercises, and promptly returned to Toronto the same day I left. The Fa managed to condense a three-day holiday into twelve hours! Well, it was much cheaper this way.

And, I finally realized that I missed the disciples in Toronto that I had been too busy to spend time with. And, I also finally really wanted to come here to be with you all. It was well worth the car and motel rental, the half-used theatre ticket, and the drive to Orillia and home.

I am back in Toronto, clearer-headed and ready for the next big adventure on this incredible and most precious journey of Fa Rectification.

Thank you for listening to a few of my experiences. They express my current level of understanding and I would appreciate knowing anything you might think needs adjustment.

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