Spreading the Fa in San Diego

A Practitioner from San Diego,

PureInsight | August 2, 2004

[PureInsight.org] My name is F. K. I'm a Dafa disciple from San Diego, California. In the following, I'd like to report to Master and fellow practitioners my experiences spreading the Fa and clarifying the truth with San Diego practitioners over the past two years. Please point out anything incorrect.

Located in the southern tip of California, San Diego is the seventh largest city in the United States, and one with a relatively dense Chinese population. The weather there is sunny and warm throughout the year, and there are many outdoor activities organized by local communities. Practitioners in San Diego find these circumstances favorable to reaching more people, spreading the Fa, and clarifying the truth. Over the last 10 months, practitioners in San Diego have participated in 20 community parades and over 30 street fairs. They have organized nearly 100 Falun Dafa workshops in libraries, community centers, senior recreation centers, companies and universities. More and more people have come to know the magnificence of Dafa and the on-going persecution of Dafa practitioners in China through these activities. Among them are government officials, journalists, community leaders, and common people. Moreover, many of them have voluntarily come forward to help spread the Fa, clarify the truth, and expose the evil. These activities have, so to speak, triggered a positive domino effect in terms of truth-clarification and Fa-rectification. Along with this, over the past two years, owing to Master's care and Dafa's power, more than 20 new practitioners, both Chinese and Western, have obtained the Fa, quickly merged into Fa-rectification, and become active participants in different Fa-rectification projects. Dozens of new practitioners do the exercises regularly at 10 or so practice sites and help spread the Fa in their own way. The awakening of the sentient beings, their support of Dafa and their longing for Dafa, have helped disciples in San Diego to see with clearer vision the sacred duty and tremendous responsibility they have. This situation has proven to be especially inspiring and encouraging to our newer practitioners.

I. Government officials support Dafa and condemn persecution

To better clarify the truth of Dafa to elected local officials and introduce Dafa to them, San Diego practitioners have celebrated ten or so "Falun Dafa Weeks" in Southern California, doing so with the help of practitioners from neighboring areas. More than 10 officials or their representatives participated in the celebrations, while more than 100 officials have issued proclamations to Dafa and Master during these Falun Dafa Weeks.

Mark Lewis, the Mayor of El Cajon City in San Diego County, came to our celebration of "East San Diego County Falun Dafa Week" in May of 2003 and gave a keynote speech. He also signed on to a petition for rescuing Charles Li; Charles was at the time on the sixth day of a hunger strike. The Mayor of Encinitas, Maggie Houlihan, first learned about Falun Dafa in a Christmas parade in the city the year before, at which the Falun Gong team won third prize in a special category. In the celebration of "North San Diego County Falun Dafa Week" on February 15, 2004, Mayor Houlihan issued, for the first time, a proclamation for Falun Dafa, and gave a warm talk. Assemblywoman Shirley Horton of California grew more acquainted with Falun Gong while at the 8th Rolando Street Fair, held on May 28 of 2004. After 2:00 in the afternoon, Ms. Horton visited our booth with her staff members. Practitioners gave her some Dafa books and an exercise instruction video, and invited her to take part in the celebration of "South San Diego County Falun Dafa Week." Though Ms. Horton did not make it to the celebration herself owing to a schedule conflict, she had a congratulatory letter and proclamation prepared for the ceremony, and said she would definitely love to attend Falun Gong activities when time permits in the future.

On June 19, San Diego Falun Gong practitioners held celebrations of Falun Dafa Week in El Centro of Imperial County, which is east of San Diego County. The Mayor of El Centro himself, Raymond Castillo, came to the ceremony, issued a proclamation for Falun Dafa, and learned all five exercises together with two of his grandsons. He said in his speech that it was a great honor to be part of the celebration, and that he hoped more of the people of El Centro would come to learn Falun Dafa the next year when a second Falun Dafa Week would be celebrated. Mayor Castillo also invited practitioners to teach more people Falun Dafa exercises in a soon-to-open community center. Meanwhile, Councilman Luis Natividad, of National City, first learned about Falun Dafa at a community parade this March. He issued a proclamation for Falun Dafa this May at the celebration of "South San Diego County Falun Dafa Week." He also invited practitioners to be on the organizing committee of next year's parade. After Falun Gong practitioners were shot at in South Africa, Mr. Natividad was invited to our press conference, which we held at the Civic Center in San Diego. He gave a talk in which he strongly condemned that terrorist act by the Chinese government. He expressed his wish to become a friend of Falun Gong. Two weeks ago, Mr. Natividad invited practitioners to give a Falun Gong workshop at a community center in National City. He not only recommended Falun Gong to the audience, but even learned the exercises himself.

II. Journalists and community leaders help spread Dafa

Master said:

Also, some everyday people want to support Dafa, and from the depths of their hearts they want to do some things for Dafa. Those people aren't interfered with.

(From "Teaching and Explaining the Fa at the Metropolitan New York Fa Conference")
In the parades, street fairs, and Falun Gong workshops, practitioners came to know many journalists and community leaders. After they recognized the beauty of Dafa and the persecution in China, some of them began to use their own resources to help spread Dafa.

Mr. Leonard Novarro is the editor of an English newspaper for Asians in San Diego. A year ago, he interviewed Falun Gong practitioners and published a news story about Falun Gong in his newspaper. On May 8 and 9, San Diego Falun Gong practitioners took part in the 3rd Asian and Pacific Islander Cultural Festival in Balboa Park and demonstrated five sets of exercises on the performing stage. The performance was warmly received by the audience. Mr. Novarro also watched the performance there. He told practitioners, "Your performance was wonderful. I really hope you can do it once more." He also offered to publicize Falun Gong workshops information in his newspaper for free. He said he would report our activities later. Mr. Novarro's assistant told the practitioner that they would nominate Falun Gong practitioners for the Asian Cultural Heritage Award next year for their outstanding contribution to the community. Before practitioners give Falun Gong workshops, they would publicize the calendar in local English and Chinese newspapers. Some new practitioners learned about the workshops from these newspapers and obtained the Fa. Jessica Long is the editor of an English newspaper. She helped publicize information of workshops many times. She also offered to write a news story about Falun Gong. She came to a practice site one weekend, interviewed practitioners, and took photos of the exercises. In the essay that later appeared in her newspaper, she included detailed information about Falun Gong workshops at local libraries. Many people read her article and came to learn the exercises.

Another thing we found was that practitioners received lots of understanding and support when contacting libraries about teaching the exercises there. The director of the North Clairemont Branch Library is a lady from Hong Kong. She not only helped us to reserve the room for a workshop, but even helped post our flyers on the doors, the walls, and some desks of the library. She even handed a flyer to each patron there as they would leave. With her help and support, the workshop in that library was a great success. We once scheduled a free Falun Gong workshop in Solana Beach Public Library. The director of the library prepared a press release for the workshop, which attracted quite a good number of people there. The director gave a welcome speech before the workshop and stayed to learn all five exercises herself. After the workshop finished, she accompanied us to the door and urged us to organize more Falun Gong workshops at their library.

One day when one of our practitioners went to a community center to distribute some flyers for our free workshops, he encountered the director of the community center. The director said to the practitioner, "Recently I've been thinking about holding a workshop for something like qigong. You've come at the right time. Do you want to teach Falun Gong here?" The practitioner happily agreed and we began to hold regular workshops at that community center. So far we have held more then ten workshops there, some of which attracted around 20 people. In these workshops we can always see new faces. The director recommended our workshops to patrons of the community center. Ronald is the organizer of a community event. After he saw our booth at one street fair, he invited us to participate in the Independence Day fireworks celebration. He assigned us a booth in a prominent position so that the 10,000 or so people that came to the celebration could get a good look at our booth. During the celebration, Ronald announced to the audience three times a short introduction to Falun Gong and urged people to come by our booth and learn the exercises. Not long ago we received a phone call from him. He suggested that when we introduce Falun Gong, we should do it in a way that's more accessible to the audience. He said, "When I introduce this to other people, I would focus on its health effects."

III. People are awakening, and those with predestined relationships are coming one after another to enter the Dao and obtain the Fa

Master said:

So as things now stand, because the forces that affect the Fa-rectification have been shrinking, and all of the disruptive factors in the Three Realms have been greatly reduced, the people in this world are becoming ever more awake. And it's not just the people in this world—all beings in the Three Realms are waking up and thinking things over for themselves.

(From "Teaching the Fa on Easter, 2004, at the New York Fa Conference")

During the parades, street fairs, and Falun Gong workshops, we could indeed see that the sentient beings are gradually awakening. When we participated in the Oceanside street fair last year, one of our neighboring booths was a Kuwaiti couple who had come down from L.A. Both the husband and wife were very interested in Dafa, especially the husband, who learned all five exercises and even did the exercise demo with our practitioners. When things weren't busy at their booth, the husband would drop by and talk with us. After he learned about the persecution of Dafa disciples in Mainland China, he asked us, with tears in his eyes, "What can I do for them?" When we participated in the Poway street fair, we met a guy from Mainland China whose booth faced ours. At first he had some misunderstanding about Dafa, such as thinking that practitioners have political goals. At the street fair we tried to communicate with him all the while. He was able to see for himself there that so many people, eastern and western alike, were attracted to Falun Gong, and that the demonstrations we were invited to give on the stage were so warmly welcomed. Gradually he came to not only change his attitude, but even help us spread the Fa. He told his customers that they should come to our booth if they wanted to learn Qigong. When it came time to part, he said to our practitioners, "Thanks to your strong energy field, my business was extremely good today. San Diego's Falun Gong is really great!" When we gave a workshop at the El Centro Public Library, Mrs. Rose Banks, the wife of the library's director, was one of the attendants. Her back was injured in an accident 5 years before; she had been in pain for 5 years. She had tried all kinds of healing methods, but none worked. When she saw the information about our workshop, she at first wasn't too interested, thinking it might not work for her. But on second thought, she decided to give it a try. Her granddaughter accompanied her for support. The lady said that when she started to do the first movement of the first exercise, her whole body trembled out of pain. But she made up her mind to stick it out whatever the pain. After she finished the set of the first exercise, the backache that had tortured her for 5 long years was gone. She told us, "Today, for the first time, I am pain free!"

Master said:

Of course, there are a lot of new students who are now gradually coming in, and that's due to your clarifying the truth. It's like a master key, unlocking that old-force factor that seals the world's people off and prevents them from learning the Fa. Only your clarifying the truth can do this.

(From "Teaching the Fa at the 2003 Atlanta Fa Conference")

Thanks to the Fa-spreading and truth clarifying activities in local communities that we did, many people with predestined relationship entered the Dao and obtained the Fa. Some of these newer practitioners have even come to participate in the Fa-rectification without much delay. Two years ago there was only one practitioner at the University of California San Diego. But now the school has a dozen or so practitioners. After they obtained the Fa, those students began to contribute a lot to local Fa-rectification projects, such as offering great support to the truth-clarifying newspaper, the Minghui School, the group that makes phone calls to China, as well as the parades and street fairs. Their pure and sincere hearts toward Dafa have touched and moved both new and veteran practitioners. On June 8th, San Diego practitioners held a Falun Gong workshop for the State Compensation Insurance Fund of California, a company with more than 500 employees. The workshop, which was well received, was organized in fact by two of our newer practitioners. One of them had practiced for about a year, and the other only about two months.

Master said:

The better you cooperate with each other as a whole the more powerful you are, and the more powerful you are the greater your impact.

(From "Teaching the Fa at the 2003 Midwest-U.S. Fa Conference") In the past ten months, San Diego practitioners have participated in activities of different sorts to spread the Fa and clarify the truth almost every week. During the July 4th holiday this year, we participated in 5 parades and 5 street fairs in a three day period. On weekends when there are no community events, practitioners go to libraries or other public places to teach the exercises. One week we taught exercises at as many as six different libraries and community centers. Achieving such results can't be separated from the good Fa-study and cultivation environment in San Diego. Practitioners really value the group Fa-study we have every week. They take turns hosting the Fa-study and discussion. After an hour and a half of Fa-study, practitioners share cultivation experiences and coordinate the truth-clarifying activities for the coming weekend, and so on. Every group Fa-study is like a small-scale Fa conference. In the peaceful and compassionate environment, veteran practitioners look after newer practitioners and encourage them, while newer practitioners respect veteran practitioners and cooperate with them. All practitioners help one another on equal footing. Many practitioners look forward to the group Fa-study every week. We believe the good Fa-study and cultivation environment is a prerequisite for all of our work spreading the Fa and clarifying the truth. It's one of the reasons many new practitioners are so quickly able to merge into the mighty current of Fa-rectification.

A year ago, we organized a workshop at a library. Six practitioners went there, but nobody came to learn the exercises. The six practitioners, instead of going away, stayed there, sent forth righteous thoughts, and did the exercises themselves. They were not disappointed by it. Later on, they tried to arrange the workshops together alongside other activities, and the results became better and better. Now on average 10 to 20 people come to our workshops. Moreover, practitioners receive phone calls every day either asking about how to learn the exercises and buy the books, or inviting us to teach the exercises. Every time we participate in parade or street fair, we distribute flyers carrying information about our free workshops and sites, and they include other items that clarify the truth. We usually organize workshops at the library of the community where the parade or street fair takes place. People who get our information at the parade or street fair can then go to our workshops to learn the exercises. And if they want to learn more, they can go to a nearby practice site. After practicing for some time, some of the new practitioners then join us for group Fa-study, and gradually enter the Fa-rectification. To make learning the exercises easier, San Diego practitioners have set up 10 regular practice sites in the eight most visited parks and two community centers.

All of us feel that these activities, including the parades, the street fairs, and workshops, not only provide opportunities to clarify the truth and save the sentient beings, but also for us practitioners to improve in cultivation. After each of these activities we can feel that we've increased the size of our hearts and removed many attachments. And the cooperation among our practitioners is always getting better. Also, practitioners can feel the grace and protection of Master. What Master wants to see from us is our sincere and devoted hearts for Dafa. As long as we have that kind of pure heart, Master will pave the road for us and arrange everything for us, and we will be able to overcome all challenges and problems that come along. Looking at the sentient beings' longing for Dafa and their admiration of Dafa, we all feel the sense of dignity and responsibility that comes with being a Dafa disciple, and we will thus walk the cultivation path that lies ahead with even greater firmness and solidity.

My gratitude goes out to Master! My gratitude goes out to fellow practitioners!

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