Retrospective on the Course of my Practice

A Chinese Falun Dafa Practitio

PureInsight | July 4, 2005

[Chicago Fa Conference 2005] My name is Bin. I am 31 years old and hold the Ph.D. degree from the Chinese Academy of Science. Not long ago, I was rescued and came to Chicago. At first, on behalf of Dafa practitioners in the Chinese Academy of Science and Dafa practitioners in prisons in mainland China, I want to use this opportunity to send greetings to Master Li! Greetings to our fellow practitioners abroad!

I obtained the Fa in 1995. After July 20, 1999, I was illegally detained many times. My degree certificate was revoked. I was put in prison for three years and forced to take brainwashing classes for thousands of hours. In March 2004, I was released home after the prison term expired. Since I did not admit the so-called crime and did no penance, I was strictly monitored and had no freedom or job. The "610 Office" tried several times to send me to brainwashing classes for further persecution. With the rescue help of fellow practitioners abroad, I finally broke through layer upon layer of toll gates and obstacles as high as mountains and safely came to the U.S. Thank you, Master Li! Thank you, fellow practitioners who helped rescue me!

Looking back over my more than nine years' practice, I witnessed the grandest, most touching, most solemn and stirring moments in human history. Moments with the grandness of platitudes, countless feats that were touching, and those with lingering, hard to dispel, painfulness. Compared with many fellow practitioners in mainland China, I did not do well enough. I can only superficially talk about my personal practice course and experiences. Hope fellow practitioners can help point out any deficiency and mistakes.

I. Promoting the Fa, Firmly Doing the Practice and Building the Groundwork

In 1995, when I obtained the Fa at the Chinese Academy of Science in Beijing, there were not so many Falun Gong practitioners. A few of us graduate students quickly set up a practice site. After that, no matter whether it was hot or cold weather, we got up at 5am and started doing the practice every day. We also took turns in promoting the Fa and teaching new comers.

Beijing's winter is extremely cold. When we were doing the 2nd exercise, Holding the Wheels, quite often our hands were frozen and painful like a knife cutting through them. The mosquitos in the summer are also very fearsome. Normally, after we did the sitting meditation, we could see mosquito dropping on the ground around us. They could not fly any more since they sucked too much of our blood. Practice is a serious matter. We could not always spend time driving away the mosquitos. After we practiced there for a few months, if the mosquito bit me again, I would feel no pain, no itching, no bump. After the practice, some tiny red spots were left on the skin. There were many cutworms at the practice site. They liked to climb onto our bodies. Sometimes they would climb from the feet all the way to the neck. I would not move a bit. We spent our spare time in Fa studies or organizing group Fa studies. Not long afterwards, there were more and more new practitioners. Moreover, through group Fa study, they quickly had a deeper understanding of Dafa. We constantly helped these new practitioners to set up new practice sites and new Fa study groups in the surrounding areas.

That year, the entire situation in Beijing was like that. New practitioners quickly increased in number. On the market, the book Zhuan Falun was the best seller. During the winter or summer break times, with the money we saved through our daily expenses, we bought many Zhuan Falun books and took them to our home towns to promote Dafa. We often got people's supercilious looks and slandering remarks. No matter how hard put or tired we might be, we felt especially happy when we saw people getting rid of their bad habits and truly becoming kind persons after they obtained the Fa.

During those years of promoting the Fa and firmly doing the practice, besides doing well on my work, I totally involved myself in the cultivation, which built a solid foundation for me later on when I could stand up and tell the truth to other people under severe persecution.

II. Safeguarding the Fa with Hardships and Being Persecuted for Doing That

On July 20, 1999, a great number of veteran practitioners in many places around the country were arrested. In the morning of July 21, I and some fellow practitioners from the Chinese Academy of Science took a taxi and went to Zhongnanhai to appeal. That place was already strictly guarded. The taxi could not drive to Fuyou Street and had to stop at a location two blocks away. We had to walk forward. At that time, we saw big buses and police everywhere. Some of them were interrogating and examining the passersby. Some with police sticks violently beat up practitioners. Some kicked practitioners and dragged practitioners onto the big bus. Some of the practitioners were beaten up so as to have blood covering their entire faces. We spoke in loud voice "Don't hit people!" In turn, the police grabbed our arms and jammed us onto the big bus. At first, I was detained at the Sports Stadium and finally was sent to a police station in Zhongguan Village for brainwashing. Two days later, I was released and continued to receive brainwashing sessions in my work unit.

At that time, the program of bad mouthing Falun Gong extended all over, on every street big or small. Within a few days after July 20, I went from being viewed by others as a good student that everyone would look at and praise to a target that everyone would criticize. Nearly every day, I was forced to attend the brainwashing classes. My father often shed tears when there was no one around. My mother kept losing handful after handful of hair. Within only a few months, they looked much older at one blow. My relatives and friends all asked me to stop the practice. Otherwise, they would be entangled. My heart was broken into pieces. However, I thought about my previous situation. Before, I was a selfish person and lived an ignorant life. It was the Dafa that changed me and I benefited from it a lot. Then, as a Dafa practitioner, what should I do? Under tremendous pressure, I constantly persuaded myself that I should stand up and support Dafa and continue with the practice. On one side, there was Dafa. On the other side, there was my degree and the relatives' attachment and fellow-friendship. At that moment, each step for me was like lifting the feet with legs weighing thousands of pounds. Each time of going out to validate the Fa was like a life and death test. Nevertheless, once I stepped out of the brainwashing place, I would do things a Dafa practitioner should do with no regret. Each day, I continued to study at least one lecture of Zhuan Falun, plus doing the exercises.

Each day after August 1999, a great number of practitioners from other places around the country went to Beijing. They had to break away from their surroundings and blockades and pass layer upon layer of tollgates. Some of them even had to walk several hundred or thousands of miles to come to Beijing. In the following few months, each day more than several tens of thousands of practitioners from other places around the country went to Beijing. Many people did not have any relatives or friends in Beijing. Some of them had to sleep in the open on the streets. Some had to live in the subway tunnels. Some just slept in the parks. Some of them had pretty good family conditions and were the section chefs or director generals in their unit. After going through all the trouble to get to Beijing to appeal, they had to sleep in the farmland and suffered mosquito bites and in the mean time had to watch out for arrest by the police.

At that time, it was especially important for the practitioners to communicate with each other. During that summer, the practitioners from Qinghua University and Chinese Academy of Science practice sites went home and dismantled the group practice environment. Under pressure and the evil's deceit, some of them wrote the guarantee letter or regret letter, etc. In early September, after they returned to Beijing disguised as tourists, we held our first experience sharing conference in Yuan Mingyuan. After the experience sharing, they realized that they were wrong and should step up and validate the Fa. At that time, some of the veteran practitioners still could not step up. We would go to their homes and communicate with them. We created a good environment and slowly many of them came to the practice again.

Through these personal experiences, we felt that at that time the most urgent task was to provide boarding for those practitioners from other places around the country, and organize group Fa study and experience sharing and try to have a deeper understanding from the Fa point of view. By and large, genuine practitioners in the entire Beijing area were involved in that activity. Those who had money would help financially and those who were capable would provide help on that aspect. After exchanging opinions with each other, some of the practitioners felt that those who wanted to appeal should go ahead to appeal. When some practitioners felt that they should go to Tiananmen to do the exercises, then they should go ahead and do that. After the experience sharing, some went to their hometowns and brought their ingathering home and encouraged even more practitioners to step out to validate the Fa.

Under Jiang's control, the CCP's evil decisions on the nature of Dafa kept escalating. We had no place to appeal. At that time, some Falun Gong practitioners were preparing to hold a news conference in Beijing. That was a very encouraging event. The preparation of the news conference got many Beijing practitioners' active support. On October 25, 1999, when Jiang was interviewed by a reporter from the French newspaper Le Figaro, he smeared Dafa as an "evil cult." A Dafa practitioners' news conference was successfully held in Beijing on October 28. Over twenty western journalists attended that news conference. That was the first time when a voice came out from mainland China to the people of the entire world that positively introduced Dafa after the brutal persecution. It was like a resounding slap on evil Jiang's face. Evil Jiang ordered Beijing City Police Station to solve that case within one week. I was interrogated by Beijing City Police Station because I introduced the interpreter to the news conference.

During the "Two Conferences" period in the last ten days of February 2000, I wrote public letters to the People's Congress, the National Political Consultative Conference, former Prime Minister Zhu Rongji and twenty more ministers to charge Jiang's gangster regime with evil deeds. After that, I was sent to brainwashing sessions for a few days. Later on, when China's Military Museum had an exhibit smearing Dafa, I made up my mind to validate the Fa and went ahead regardless of what would happen to me. On the next morning, a fellow practitioner who had a banner hiding in his clothes and I went directly to the Military Museum. We were planning to put up the banner with "Truthfulness, Compassion and Forbearance" at the evil exhibit. Unfortunately, the banner was ferreted out at the gate. Once again, we were illegally arrested and detained. The Chinese Academy of Science suspended my schooling and sent me home.

In order not to cooperate with evil, I quickly returned to the Chinese Academy of Science. After the crackdown, all media in China carried evil propaganda. At that time, under the CCP's influence, the overseas Chinese media abroad echoed the evil's voice. We, therefore, participated in the establishment of the "Epoch Times" and managed the news reporting jobs in mainland China.

III. A Painful Lesson Hard to Forget

In mainland China, there is nothing wrong with daring to let go of life and death and establishing the media to validate Dafa, clarifying the truth. However, at that time, we did not have a complete understanding of the evil and the old force's damage. At that time, most practitioners thinking leaned heavily on one side: one should completely lay down worries on the safety aspect. Everything should have its own arrangement. For those things that will not have an accident, it sure would not. Therefore, most practitioners were very careless and did not pay too much attention to the safety issue. For an instance, when renting a house, a bunch of people would come and go at the same time. In public occasions, they would raise their voice when things about Dafa came up, etc.

Each time fellow practitioners' let go of life and death, validating Dafa projects would make Jiang's gangster regime tremble with fear. Besides managing the Epoch Times, at that time, practitioners in Beijing also had some secret projects that gave a strong shock to Jiang's ganger regime. For instance, in the morning, Beijing residents very often would go out and walk on the street or exercise in the park. They would hear a loudspeaker exposing Jiang's falsity broadcasting on the streets or from the tree or in the park. These little loudspeakers were hidden very well and not easily noticed. Even though they were found, it would take some energy and time to take them off. Therefore, common people would not touch them. Instead, they would smile and listen to the broadcast with intention and felt that Falun Gong practitioners were truly brave. However, these projects were damaged due to the same careless reasons. The general team of the National Safety of Beijing Police Station once searched out over three thousand "little speakers" in one of the practitioner's living place. That practitioner was sentenced to 13 years in prison.

Recalling the past, those events might be the old force's arrangement in our practitioners. Besides they didn't pay attention to the safety, some practitioners even actively encouraged other practitioners to give up some the secret ongoing truth-telling projects and work on some dangerous or even extreme and probably ineffective activities. Quite often, those who were transformed after being arrested were those instigators. As a result, they turned over and did the so-called "help and educate" of other practitioners. At that time, practitioners ignored the importance of truth-telling towards the media, did not have a deep understanding of the damage from the old forces, did not have a deep understanding towards the evil CCP and even had some conceit. Thus, evil grasped the chance.

IV. Having the Righteous Thought to Pass the Test in Prison

Before I was arrested, I knew there were more secret projects in validating Dafa in Beijing. Luo Gan's followers also noticed something. Therefore they wanted to unbar an opening when they arrested me.

In the dark, damp and crowded cell, each person did not even have one square meter of space, where they had to eat, sleep, and use the restroom in the same place. The smell was extremely bad. There were all kinds of illnesses spreading around. As soon as I went in the cell, the other prisoners warned me not to think myself as a Ph.D. and neither should I consider myself as a human being. During the first few ten days, I was sent to the interrogation room and they would continuously try to induce me to make a confession or extort a confession. The times they interrogated me surprised the criminals waiting for execution and serious criminals. They sometimes began to interrogate me at 9pm and then sent me back to the cell at 4am or 2am. When I was just ready to go to sleep, they would start another turn of interrogation. Sometimes, they would interrogate me in the daytime and sent me back to the cell and then the criminals would ask me to stand on duty for punishment. After a short while, they would begin another round of interrogation. They also forced any of the Dafa practitioners in the prison who knew me to expose or impeach me. This kind of interrogation made one feel that one would be interrogated at any time. They might ask any kind of questions. The pre-adjudication person from the national security team, Beijing City, and their bosses often reminded me: Do you know what place this is? This is the No. 7 department! Few people go out alive if they do not write something with a good attitude… Do you think people like you can go out alive from here? Do you know Xing Baozhong? He became insane here." Based on their experience of punishing people, they knew clearly that this kind of interrogation will very easily make people's mind breakdown.

Normally, after the interrogation, when a person was sent back to the cell, he would have physical punishment by being made to sit on a wooden board for a long time. Sitting on a wooden board is a very painful torture. One has to hold the legs with both hands while keeping the upper body straight, and shoulder by shoulder with another prisoner. Once it reached a long time, the part that the buttock touching the board was so painful that it was like a needle pricking. This kind of physical punishment was much stricter for Falun Gong practitioners. I remembered that several times I wanted to relax my legs a little bit and would be kicked and beaten up by the prisoners from the rear row. "You don't want to listen to the government's words? Are you still doing your exercises or what? Be truthful!" The most painful time was during the hot summer seasons. Because there were so many people within one cell, I had difficulty breathing. It was like a fish lacking oxygen. Due to long terms sitting on the hard wooden board, the part that touching the board would become irritated. In such an environment, one would feel life is no better than death. Once a prisoner sighed, saying a pig would not be able to live in such conditions. Another prisoner corrected his sentence and said: You are wrong. A fish would die in such a place.

I was illegally detained in the Beijing National Security Headquarters in March, 2001. At that time, based on my own understanding of the Fa, I could not distinguish what was our Master's test and what was old force's arrangement. I incorrectly thought the persecutions should be the portion that I myself needed to bear. I did not understand we should completely deny all the old force's arrangements. From the overall environment, we did not know the Send Forth Righteous Thoughts to get rid of evil. Being isolated in that environment, I reactively bore the persecutions, and just wanted to bear everything. In additional to the very bad environment, plus the evil policemen's torture, at the beginning, I also bore the torture and insults from the inmates.
In such a place, even though you do not want to accept the bad stuff, what you see is all filthy behavior, what you hear is also bad, what you see is dirty stuff. There is surging karma everywhere. By staying with those criminals in the same cell day and night, their dirty thoughts and behavior all exert a subtle influence on you. After staying in the cell for some time, I began to realize that I tended to think as an ordinary person. More over, I even had some impure thoughts sometimes.

I even had thought that I did not want to live any more, which was extremely dangerous. I knew that I had been influenced by the environment. Before I was arrested, what I normally did and said was basically from the Fa point of view and my thought was relatively pure. That was the result of several years' hard practice. When looking at myself dropping down little by little, I was truly worried. One silent night, I finally shed my tears. It was because I didn't study the Fa for a long time and felt sad. The Teacher said, "Dafa never leaves the body, Heart contains Zhen-Shan-Ren; A great Arhat in the world, Spirits and ghosts fear the most." (Note: "Mighty Virtue," official translation) Dafa is the only guarantee for me to pass the barriers in prison. However, the evil beings had searched me several times by stripping off my clothes and I had no paper with me. I felt regret that I hadn't memorized the Teacher's books and articles. Later on, I spent the time while I was sitting on the wooden board to recall one paragraph after another of what the Teacher had said before in the Fa to stabilize my righteous thought and I kept doing it. Dafa helped me keep a relatively calm mind and filled me with hope. Slowly, I began to believe that by all mean I would be able to get out of that death prison.

In the prison, passing each day was just like I had spent a whole year. The most relaxed time of the day was the 1-2 hours' time when the guards changed; we could chat a little bit. I utilized these times to tell stories to the inmates. They all liked the stories, eventually, many of them would like this story time and waited for me to tell them. Having a pure heart, I told them the stories, like Out of Egypt, Sakyamuni's cultivation stories, etc. Sometimes, I also told them cultivation stories about Dafa disciples. During those story tellings, I found out that my confidence in cultivating Dafa was strengthened. Gradually, some of them no long said any thing bad about Dafa and paid more respect to me. Some of them openly said: those who practice Falun Gong are all good people, CCP is too bad. My righteous thoughts and beliefs finally warmed up their cold hearts.

The police madly interrogated me for over ten days. They used all kinds of methods, severe and moderate. During the first forty days, I could hardly have any sleep and I lost nearly thirty pounds. They finally completely gave up their intention to break through an opening from me. In the meantime, it was also because many of the other detained practitioners and I didn't cooperate with them. The evidence that they could find to use to persecute me was my inviting some staff people working for the Epoch Times to a dinner. If they could not get anything from me for a long time, they would also be ticked off by their superiors. In the end, to tackle the pressure from the above, they had to end the case and claimed that they had found out everything. Later on, only because of my inviting the Epoch Times staff people to a dinner, I was sentenced to a three-year prison term.

V. Promoting the Righteous Fa in a Foreign Country

Under the persecution and against the persecution, five years passed by. I safely came to the U.S. After I got off the airplane, I said to the fellow practitioners, "I feel that every grain of the air here is filled with freedom."

On this piece of free land, I finally can freely study the Fa and do the practice. Here fellow practitioners have an intense life. Besides doing their own job, they have to take care of delivering the newspapers, distributing flyers, participating in parades, talking with the congressmen, making phone calls, and holding torture exhibitions, etc., which really put me in a daze. All these are totally new to me. During more than five years' severe persecution in mainland China, I learned to carry out many "underground activities." That was actually an abnormal condition formed under the CCP's persecution. So, at first, I could not conduct things openly. At first, I felt uneasy when people asked me to distribute newspapers or truth-telling flyers on the street. It is like in prison, one is asked to lower one's head all the time. After a few months, if you ask that person to raise his head, he will feel uncomfortable.

I know it is a psychological barrier and a notion and should try to overcome it. However, it takes time if one really wants to do that. In such a short time after I came to the U.S., I went to New York three times and participated in the torture and truth-telling exhibits in Manhattan, and other activities. Slowly I noticed that I do not feel shy any more. However, when it was the time for me to do the truth-telling activities, I would always want to have a fellow practitioner to accompany me. Such attachment still does not want to let go. Very soon, the Teacher arranged a chance for me to get rid of this attachment.

The time before the NTDTV event was an urgent situation. Fellow practitioners prepared nearly 180 materials packages. That day, we had to drive to the state government to deliver them to 118 representatives and 56 senators. Including me, three of us fellow practitioners went there. At the very beginning, I was not afraid since I had been there several times to deliver newspapers to these representatives. But every time I had fellow practitioners accompanying me. However, when we arrived at Springfield on that day, it was after four o'clock in the afternoon. It was nearly the time for the senators to go home. If three of us went together to visit each senator, we would not have enough time to finish visiting all of them. Therefore, we decided that each person go and visit one senator and deliver the package separately. I become nervous. I could not delay since the NTDTV event was an urgent task. I had to take several dozen materials packages to distribute by myself and I had to speak English to answer the secretary's questions. After I distributed the materials, I noticed sweat coming down from my head. However, I was not afraid any more.

I remembered when I was in prison I had dream. In the dream, I saw myself and many other fellow practitioners walking with great difficultly on a muddy road. The Teacher asked us to reach the top of a mountain and wait for him. On the way, fellow practitioners kept falling down and got up again. After passing by a muddy pond, fellow practitioners and I constantly fell down in the muddy lair. The snakes in the muddy lair would come and tangle our body and the leaches would come and suck our blood. We tried very hard to throw off the snakes and leaches. We helped each other and continued to walk forward. After a quite long time, we finally reached our destination. We waited for the Teacher to come. We waited, and waited. The Teacher didn't come. Many practitioners wanted to leave. Just at that moment, a big hole opened in the sky. There came a shower of immortal melody, then flying out a group of colorful big birds. The feather of the birds were mainly turquoise. I had never seen that kind of bird before. These big birds flew to us and landed in front of us. At once, the slashes on our body were all gone and we turned into divine beings. We jumped on the back of the big birds and flew to the sky high above. There were seven colorful lucky clouds in the sky. People in the world all looked up in the sky. People on the street also raised their heads and looked at us. People living in the high buildings also opened their windows. People did not want to blink their eyes and miss such a beautiful view. In order to let the people see us clearly, we slowly came down. After quite a long time, we flew over to the outside of the sky.

Later, in one occasion, I found a record in an ancient book 《太平广记钞》: That big bird is called "Qing Luan." In ancient China, only high-level immortals who obtained the Tao could ride this kind of bird. Regular immortals could only ride dragons, kylins, etc., which are different divine animals for different levels of immortals.

Although it was only a dream, I believe our future must be even more graceful and great. Fellow practitioners, let's join together in Dafa! The day of extreme splendor will come.

Thank you, Master Li! Thank you, everyone!

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