New York Diary: Awakening Manhattan

A Falun Dafa Practitioner from

PureInsight | October 4, 2004

"Only Falun Gong can change Chinese people's souls"

[] Falun Gong practitioners from Toronto entered Manhattan once again at noon on Saturday, August 28, 2004. Manhattan, the small peninsula along the edge of the City of New York, a relatively small area full of skyscrapers, is the financial capital of the world. Many of those who wear indifferent expressions on their faces and walk at a hurried pace in this area are members of the elite in the area of finance and economics, whose souls rise and fall completely in sync with the stock market. Seemingly knowing nothing about Falun Dafa's wide spread in the world and the Jiang regime's brutal persecution against Falun Gong practitioners in China, how much they need Falun Gong practitioners to awaken their oblivious souls with incomparable compassion!

Earlier, during an end-of-July weekend, Falun Gong practitioners from Toronto, along with practitioners from Taiwan and New York, held their first anti-torture exhibit in Manhattan, demonstrated the Falun Dafa exercises and distributed truth-clarification information to pedestrians. Like bright lightning piercing a thick dark cloud, this act has announced the beginning of a grand-scale truth-clarification activity in Manhattan.

Like running a relay match, while taking proper care of their jobs and families, Falun Gong practitioners in Toronto are running between Toronto and New York, one group of them after another.

Today, right before the Republican National Convention starts, nearly a hundred Falun Gong practitioners from Toronto came to Manhattan once again.

L and R: Part of the "Wall of Courage" and
Center: Candlelight vigil across from the Waldorf Hotel

Upon arriving in muggy New York from cool Toronto, we were too busy to think of resting. We went swiftly to the well-known Waldorf Astoria Hotel and formed a line along the street across the hotel, so as to build the "Wall of Courage." We held large pictures aloft, showing the beautiful Falun Dafa exercises, displayed posters with explanation texts that exposed the evildoing Chinese police brutally torturing Falun Gong practitioners in China. We also unfolded banners, to call kindhearted people in the world to help stop the persecution. Under the burning sun our dignified, solemn and respectful facial expressions as well as our pure Falun Dafa energy field from surprised many New Yorkers and tourists alike. Pedestrians and taxi drivers accepted our handouts; tourist van drivers accepted our handbills and distributed them to their passengers. Car passengers lowered their windows and accepted our flyers. Some people watching the anti-torture exhibit had tears in their eyes. Security personnel and police officers accepted our information. Falun Gong practitioners' rationality and peacefulness won their praise.

At nightfall, practitioners from Toronto and New York held a candlelight vigil at several places of interest, including across the Waldorf Astoria Hotel, to memorialize those practitioners in China who had lost their lives for persisting in their belief. By the flickering of the lotus flower lamps, a number of practitioners started singing "Falun Dafa Hao." Gradually, more and more practitioners joined in; "Falun Dafa Hao, Falun Dafa Hao, Falun Dafa is a righteous Fa; and the Buddha-light illuminates everywhere…" the voices penetrated Manhattan's night sky, and expressed practitioners unshakable faith in Dafa and their highest respect for the practitioners in China who had devoted themselves to the truth.

Mr. L, a kind-hearted Toronto businessman, was busy helping out in our team. He has a very strong sense of justice. Although he is not a practitioner, he wanted to know us very much, so he joined us and participated in the activities such as distributing flyers and in the "Wall of Courage." Two days went by; he was deeply touched by practitioners' selflessness and never-say-tired attitude. He said, "You use your own time and savings to come to New York to clarify the truth, not for recognition or rewards, and come regardless of nationality, gender or age. It's truly remarkable!" A practitioner answered him humbly, "We are cultivators so we should do this full of compassion and only for offering salvation to people." Mr. L said, "No matter which political party changes the political power in China, only Falun Gong can change Chinese people's souls!"

"Why are yellow T-shirts everywhere in Manhattan?"

On Sunday, Aug. 29th, the sun started to burn fairly early in the morning.

Along the streets one could easily identify elegantly dressed RNC (Republican National Convention) delegates. From Monday though Thursday the Convention, with its thirty thousand attendees, was held in New York.

A group of Toronto practitioners demonstrated the exercises in the morning. Tang Dynasty-dress dancing and waist drum performances were in Central Park. The smooth and elegant exercises, beautiful dance and cheerful drum sounds attracted many people's attention, as well as reporters from the New York Times newspaper and NBC TV. They videotaped Falun Gong practitioners' performances.

One Falun Gong practitioner approached a reporter in Times Square and asked him calmly, "Why don't you report the persecution against Falun Gong in China?" The reporter lowered his head, ashamed, and accepted a truth-clarification leaflet. A successful businessman started a conversation with a practitioner after he accepted a truth-clarification handbill. When he was told that some foreign investments with China were utilized to persecute Falun Gong practitioners in China, he started to dither, mentioning that he had a lot of businesses in China and so on. The practitioners sighed lightly in his heart, "People who have been blinded by immediate benefits, please wake up as soon as possible! A human being comes with nothing and leaves with nothing. Please do not lose the most precious thing in life."

In busy Broadway, the Republican delegates arrived from all directions to participate in all kinds of activities in this area. Group after group of practitioners from Toronto handed out truth-clarification information to them. When the passers-by accepted the handbills, some asked, "Why are there yellow T-shirts everywhere in Manhattan? What are you doing here?" Practitioners told them about the persecution in China in a very calm tone. The delegates were surprised at what they had learned, and many of them said that they would try their best to support us. A university professor doing cancer research talked with a practitioner for over an hour. He turned to other delegates and said loudly, "Please help stop the persecution against Falun Gong in China!"

In the afternoon, a practitioner who had been distributing flyers along the road saw two men surrounded by a large group of bodyguards coming in her direction. When they passed her, she handed two copies of truth-clarification leaflets to these two men and asked them to pay attention to the Falun Gong issue. They accepted the items offered. Dozens of flash bulbs went off around them. Later on she came to know that these two men were New York City's mayor Bloomberg and New York State Governor George Pataki. These two New York leaders were handed our information in an easy manner, thanks to the arrangements made through Falun Dafa.

Two officers were sitting in a police car. When a skinny, elderly woman Dafa practitioner signaled to offer them Falun Gong truth-clarification information they shook their hands, signaling no. She said to them, using the only English sentence she could, "I am doing this for you!" The police officers smiled, lowered the window and accepted the grandma's materials.

Yes, people in Manhattan, we are doing this for you! Falun Gong practitioners from all over the world came here to Manhattan, for your rosy future. People in Manhattan: please wake up! Things you care for now are as transient as fleeting clouds. We came here for you!

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