PureInsight | August 18, 2003
[Series note: In the brutal persecution against Falun Dafa and its practitioners, lies from the evil forces have poisoned countless sentient beings and deceived numerous Chinese people so that they don't know the truth. It is crucial how we use our rationality and wisdom while clarifying the truth to the precious Chinese people. We will have a direct impact on those who can be saved if we clarify the truth in a way that they can accept and understand more easily. We hope we can share our Dafa-endowed wisdom obtained from clarifying the truth and from sharing experiences with other practitioners.]
[Pureinsight.org] I would like to share with fellow practitioners my understandings and experiences from clarifying the truth to precious Chinese people through the Internet.
Master has told us to "clarify the truth with wisdom," (From "Rationality" in Essentials for Further Advancement II). During truth-clarifying efforts I understood more deeply that all we have is created and endowed from Dafa, including our wisdom. The prerequisite, of course, is that one has to study Fa well. On a daily basis I usually read one chapter of Zhuan Falun after I get home. Then I work on Fa-Rectification projects, and, finally, I will manage to squeeze in some time to clarify the truth via the Internet.
A. Treat people with compassion and always think of others first
Since I am slow at typing, instead of talking to people directly in chat rooms to clarify the truth, recently I have often gone to Internet forums. Sometimes I meet other practitioners there, including disciples from Mainland China. I have come to realize many of my shortcomings from them. When they clarify the truth, their tone and compassion move lots of readers who, as a result, get to know the truth. In comparison, during the past I used a harsh tone when clarifying the truth. Nevertheless, they might get to know the truth as a result, but they would still, on an emotional level, feel reluctant to accept it. Gradually I was able to treat others with genuine compassion and think of their mood, mindset, and environment by putting myself in their position. I am finding it much easier to communicate with them.
I learned that thinking of others first when clarifying the truth must also include considering problems from their points of view.
1. Others do not necessarily know what we know
An example is the "1,400 cases." Dafa disciples know right away what it refers to (translator's note: this refers to the fabricated claim by the Chinese government that 1,400 people died as a result of practicing Falun Gong) and no further explanation is needed. But does an everyday person know what the "1,400 cases" refer to? The evil, lie producing propaganda machine in China doesn't always use the figure of 1,400. Their numbers are always changing. Sometimes it's 1,600. In addition, ordinary people probably don't automatically associate the "1,400 cases" with Falun Gong. I recently watched a computer flash program made by practitioners, which compares the normal death rate with the 1,400 cases to reveal the truth behind the 1,400 cases. But the program never once explained what the "1,400 cases" was all about. It just assumes that people already know about it. So after watching it, many people don't understand what the point of the program is. Similarly, everyday people do not understand numbers like "4.25" and "7.20" (translator's note: 4.25 refers to April 25, 1999 when over 10,000 Falun Gong practitioners gathered in Beijing asking the Chinese government to allow them to freely practice Falun Gong, and 7.20 refers to July 20, 1999 when the Chinese regime began a full-scale crackdown on Falun Gong) and cannot remember the actors and actress's names in the staged "Self-Immolation" case. Generally, people do not know who Wang Jindong or Liu Chunling is. Most people can only remember the young girl, Chen Guo (Translator's note: please refer to http://www.clearwisdom.net/emh/special_column/self-immolation.html for a detailed explanation of the truth behind the "Self-Immolation"). These are some things we should take into consideration when producing truth clarification materials.
2. Respect others and be considerate of their emotions: do not force your ideas on others
For instance, sometimes other people's arguments are based on faulty logic. We should not always take advantage of their loopholes, since we are not engaged in a debating contest. Our purpose is to clarify the truth and let people comprehend the truth. For some people, if you yield a little maybe the outcome will be better, though it is not always true. Some carry an arrogant air and will not listen to our reasoning. It would be great if we could pinpoint their errors and make them calm down. But, it is more important to let others feel our compassion. On the other hand, we should affirm and encourage their compassion and good points, even if they just have a little bit of it, and then we can try to guide them to think things over and recognize the truth. If we really expose their loopholes, we should give them a hint and spare their feelings. They will understand and this will make it easier to communicate with them next time.
Once I was able to refute all the points that a person made. He still refused to give up and admit he was wrong. Everybody knew he was irrational. I decided to let it go since his arguing wouldn't mislead others any longer. I said, "Sir, I give up. You are truly good at making your points known to people." After that, whenever he visited the forum, he no longer posted anything against Dafa.
The following is a part from a Chinese martial arts novel that I used to read: Two masters get together and fight to decide who is better. Both of them are totally relaxed. They laugh and chat with each other while exchanging just one fighting move between each other. The winner removes a button from the loser's clothes. But then he pretends to be hit by the loser and sincerely tells the loser how much greater of a martial art master the loser is and how he greatly admires him. When the loser sees he has lost the button and the winner still spares his feeling and compliments him, he does nothing and is secretly overwhelmed by the generosity of the other person. We are practitioners and we are to be even more compassionate. Common people cannot really comprehend our compassion, but they do understand our polite manners, consideration and earnestness.
Additionally, usually our affirmation of people's kindness will calm them down and make them more rational. The clear sides of their minds will take over. For example, when people get exposed to the truth, their nationalism might be invoked. They can become irrational and become very defensive. I do not touch on their attachments, but affirm their strong points. I would say, "It seems you are patriotic. It is very nice to talk to you. Actually, every Chinese is patriotic and is proud of our five thousand year history." Then, I would say, "But those who accuse people of being anti-government and traitorous only because they point out some Chinese leaders' wrongdoings, are naïve. Singing the praises of somebody is an easy thing to do. Nobody will curse at you and you'll win some brownie points with the leaders. Everyone knows how to do that. But those who are really patriotic will think of their fellow countrymen, will help them overcome difficulties and love ancient Chinese culture. This is real patriotism, isn't it? Shouting slogans like 'down with XXX,' hacking American websites and applauding that some Americans who died in the Columbia Space Shuttle accident will not make China a wealthy and powerful country. Patriotism does not only mean blind enthusiasm. We should point out and expose the problems of our country and society, and then face them in order to overcome them. Concealing and covering-up will make things worse. It will only make the officials look good, which is not good for our country and our people. It's not important how foreigners look at us. It's much more critical for us to make unremitting efforts to improve ourselves. It's really lamentable that the Chinese government conceals its problems to make itself look good. In reality this is actually weakening the country. Old Queen Cixi liked seeing foreigners complimenting China but what was the result?"
After being presented with that, some will accept our truth more easily on an intuitive level. Further communication then becomes easier.
B. Remember: when explaining the facts, our purpose is to offer salvation to sentient beings
1. If some of the false notions of people nonetheless do not prevent them from knowing the truth about the persecution, let them be
While clarifying the truth, we should not forget our main goal. We do not want to debate with or convince people to believe everything we believe. We should present them with the truth and remove their hatred acquired from governmental lies and brainwashing. If some common people's notions do not prevent them from knowing the truth of the persecution, we should leave those notions alone.
For example, a lot of people are poisoned by atheism. Do we really need to convince them that gods exist? I do not think so. As long as they know that believing in gods or Buddha is not something stupid or ridiculous and will not lead science and societal development to regress but that actually the persecution of those who believe in it is the real regression of our society and our civilization, that is enough.
When I encounter those who are deeply against theism, I would say, "As a matter of fact, in modern western society quite a few scientists are theists. Believing in god hasn't resulted in a decline of western society and scientific development. On the contrary the development of European and American countries and the advancement of their sciences rely heavily on their respect for the individual. The inherent differences in individuals makes the world look marvelous and has enabled human beings to invent various things. Actually, the unreasonable persecution of Falun Gong is against China's constitution. Besides, it is a regression of the rule of law, and a strangulation of people's creativity."
When we avoid debating details with certain people, we do not need to make our points explicitly and strongly, although we know that they are the truth. This is so we can avoid getting stuck in minor details. Master in his lectures always uses words like "it is possible…;" "just a joke" (editor's note: both quotations are unofficial translations) and other light comments. For example, in the Jinan Lecture, when Master mentioned other ways in which people cultivated their assistant consciousnesses, he used a conservative number, 98%. In fact, we know that since the genesis of the universe, it is has only been Falun Dafa practitioners that cultivate their main consciousnesses. This is a hint for me, a hint about how to clarify the truth.
Similar topics include anti-U.S. sentiments, and misunderstandings of freedom and human rights in western countries. We don't need to convince people to drop all their notions. As long as we can invoke their compassionate thoughts and let them know that we are being persecuted unjustly and that all the propaganda are just lies by the Chinese regime to cover up their crimes, I personally think that is enough (of course, some people hold negative thoughts toward Dafa precisely because of these aforementioned notions, but that is a different story).
2. Any topic could be our entry point to explain the facts about the persecution
In fact, any topic of interest of everyday people could be an entry point into clarifying the truth. We can lead them to the truth naturally because as Master said, " 'The Buddha Fa' is an insight into all mysteries." (From "LUNYU" in Zhuan Falun) Of course we should be confident towards Dafa and Dafa will endow us with wisdom.
For instance, I once encountered a person who just wants to have a good time. He said to me, "I will not be a Party member. But I do not want to be a practitioner, either. I just want to eat, drink, play and be merry since everybody is going to die anyway. You think you are a god, actually you are nothing – you are only looking for something to lean on."
I replied, "It is fine if you don't want to be a Party member or a practitioner, but do not sell out your conscience by accepting these lies. It is fine that you want to eat, drink, play and be merry since everybody is going to die anyway. I can accept that. But as you said, 'since everybody is going to die anyway,' what is the point of having a good time? No matter what you eat, no matter how happy you are, you will end up dead. Who will still be able to eat, drink, play and be merry in a coffin? So these things are things that YOU are leaning on."
Then I introduced to him the truth of Dafa. I picked up one paragraph from a disciple's article and adapted it a little bit. It read:
"Human beings have a brain and they can think. They also have limbs and desires. The brain dominates limbs and desires. However, currently, beer and skittles and desires always take control and human beings become slaves of their desires. Isn't it sad? Life is short and full of uncertainties, and time flies. We are busy every day. Who knows what we are busy doing? What is the meaning of our life? A Great Architect created us. Does he intend to let us pass away and disappear completely from the world? Is life merely such a meaningless tragedy? What should we do and pursue while we are alive? Think about it – why are Dafa practitioners, who had been suffering tremendously, willing to sacrifice so much to defend the truth? Why are they so calm and steadfast? Do you think they really understand the ultimate meaning of life?"
C. Dafa includes infinite wisdom
Master said in "Teaching and Explaining the Fa at the Metropolitan New York Fa Conference," "Actually, with a lot of things if you calmly and gently talk to people and handle those things rationally, you'll find that your wisdom will flow forth like a spring, and every sentence of yours will get right to the point, and every sentence will speak the truth. As soon as you become attached or anxious, though, or have some strong intention, your wisdom is gone, and that's because at that time you've come over to the human side again, right? You should try your best to use righteous thoughts and try your best to be in the state of a cultivator, and the results will be excellent."
If I study Fa well and my heart is pure enough, I feel my wisdom flows like spring water. Once a long-forgotten story in a book I had read ten years ago came back to me. I found that it was a very good example to use in explaining the facts. Another time, when I was trying to find literature on a certain topic in a search engine, I suddenly saw an article on another topic, which was more appropriate for that scenario. My responses to others during factual conversations are convincing, but not boring, vivid, but not meaningless. This way, ordinary people will realize that Falun Gong practitioners are not simple-minded people who can be easily deceived . Because of it, they are able to unconsciously remove some of their notions. After reading my replies to others, one person said, "You are a profound thinker. If you were a writer, your novels and essays would be good. Please write more and I will definitely read your comments." Actually, I am a science major. If I hadn't practiced Dafa, I wouldn't dare write anything.
All of these things are happening because of the power of Dafa. Sometimes I feel a book I read and some of the things I experienced when I was not yet practicing were actually preparing me for today's truth-clarification, and were arranged by Master a long time ago. So, we should be proud that we have the opportunity to practice Dafa and that we are Dafa disciples during the Fa-Rectification period. All of what we have was prepared for the Fa. Master has arranged certain knowledge and experiences of everyday people for me to use in truth clarification, including many trivial things.
To cite just one example - I can talk clearly about various religions and obscure disciplines while explaining the facts. Actually, before I obtained Fa I could only understand tiny bits of books in those areas. After cultivation, since our practitioners should not undertake two schools of practice at the same time, I could barely remember those things. But in truth clarification, as long as my heart is pure, that knowledge comes back to me naturally. When I am not sure if my memory serves me correctly, I double-check it on the Google search engine and always manage to find something unexpectedly, such as a more suitable example or story. On certain occasions, I am presented with questions that are very hard to answer. If that happens, I just go back to studying the Fa and put the question aside temporarily. If I study the Fa well, wisdom automatically comes.
[To be continued]
Translated from: http://www.zhengjian.org/zj/articles/2003/8/5/22826.html