Hamburg, Germany: People Oppose Organ Harvesting in China

May 24, 2016 | By Minghui correspondent Shirley

(Minghui.org) It was a fine spring day in Hamburg, Germany, and the downtown area was swarming with tourists and local residents, as usual. Next to Reesendammbruecke, a tourist site more than 150 years old, Falun Gong practitioners set up a booth to raise awareness about the persecution in China, especially the organ harvesting from living Falun Gong practitioners.

Seeing the mock operating table, one young man stopped to find out what had happened. After reading a poster nearby, provided by practitioners, he was astonished, “Really?! Is this actually happening in China?” After talking with one practitioner and learning about investigations by many third party organizations which have confirmed the atrocity, his expression went grim. In the end, he thanked the practitioner and encouraged him, “Please keep up good work. This is an important issue, and you must tell more people about it.”

Three teenaged girls walking past the booth were also drawn by the posters and banners. They said they had heard about the suppression in the past, and asked one practitioner why no officials had stopped such crimes. After the practitioner told them that the brutality was a nationwide suppression driven by the totalitarian Communist Party regime in China, the girls were disturbed by the cruelty, and said they would tell more people about it.

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Many passersby were surprised to hear that the systematic persecution of Falun Gong has been ongoing for 17 years.

Jack and Emily, a couple from England currently working in Hamburg, saw the practitioners’ booth on the way to the Alster Lake with their friends. Although they had heard about the persecution in China previously from their friends, the vivid picture on the posters nonetheless shocked them. Both signed petitions calling to rescue local resident Ye Xiaojun’s mother, Ms. Ye Julan.

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Like many other residents and tourists, Jack and Emily signed petitions to support Falun Gong practitioners.

Ms. Ye, 68, was arrested at home by Shanghai police in December 2014, and has since been detained. Putuo District Court sentenced her to a three-year prison term in May 2015. When Han Zheng, Party secretary of Shanghai, a sister city of Hamburg, visited Germany in early June 2015, several German news media reported on efforts by Falun Gong practitioners urging Ms. Ye’s release.

Chinese version available

Category: Other Community Events

New York State Senators Issue Proclamations to Falun Dafa

May 22, 2016 | By Cai Ju, Minghui correspondent in New York State

(Minghui.org) During the celebration of the 17th World Falun Dafa Day in May 2016, a total of 103 greetings and proclamations were received from government officials of different levels in the State of New York. They praised Falun Dafa’s universal principles of Truthfulness, Compassion and Forbearance, and the benefits the practice has brought to more than 100 million people around the world.

In addition to the NewYork State Senate Resolution 4090, sponsored by Senator Jack Martins, which proclaims May 13, 2016 as Falun Dafa Day, State Senators from the 3rd, the 4th, the 42nd and the 55th districts issued greeting letters and proclamations for the occasion.

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State Senator of the 3rd District, Thomas D. Croci, and his greeting letter

Senator Thomas D. Croci wrote in his greeting letter, “The guiding principles of this practice, truthfulness, compassion, and forbearance, are universal human values bridging cultures, nationalities, race, gender, and age. Given the current atmosphere of strife and intolerance so prevalent in our world, it is especially important to pause and reflect on the values and truths which unite us. The practice and principles of Falun Dafa encourage people to be good, kind, and thoughtful of others at all times. Certainly these are words by which to live.”

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State Senator of the 4th District, Philip M. Boyle, and his proclamation

Senator Philip M. Boyle wrote in his proclamation, “For the past twenty four years, millions of people around the world have embraced the popular meditation and cultivation practices of Falun Dafa. Also known as Falun Gong, Falun Dafa is a peaceful spiritual practice rooted in traditional Chinese culture. It consists of meditation, exercise, and a philosophy centered on the values of truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance. Through their practice, people become healthier, happier, and more altruistic.”

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State Senator of the 42nd District, John J. Bonacic

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Proclamation issued by State Senator of the 42nd District, John J. Bonacic

Senator John J. Bonacic wrote in his proclamation, “The practice of Falun Dafa is simple; it consists of primarily of two components, self-improvement through study and the practice of five gentle exercises…

“Practitioners of Falun Dafa strive to live by the principles of Truthfulness, Compassion and Forbearance in order to improve their moral nature, and in turn, to experience remarkable health benefits; and…

“To the people of China, Falun Dafa provides a source of strength in the face of oppression; although the practice is banned in the land of its origin, practitioners persevere in the pursuit of their spiritual beliefs, risking imprisonment or worse.”

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State Senator of the 55th District, Rich Funke and his proclamation

Senator Rich Funke recognized the week of May 9-16, 2016 as Falun Dafa Week in the State of New York. The proclamation says, “Falun Dafa (also called Falun Gong) is a high level mind-body-spirit cultivation practice consisting of five gentle sets of exercises and teachings guided by the characteristics of the Universe – Truthfulness, Compassion and Forbearance…

“Falun Dafa practitioners all over the world, and throughout our great state, have dedicated countless hours to their communities in organizing free meditation classes, Chinese cultural productions of music and dance, and participating in local community events…

“Falun Dafa practitioners also actively work to bring about a peaceful resolution to the persecution of Falun Gong in China, and improve the future of the world’s most populous country.”

Chinese version available

Category: Dafa Day Recognition

Insights from a Few of the 10,000 Who Paraded in New York to Celebrate Falun Dafa Day

May 23, 2016 | By Minghui correspondents De Xiang and Li Xiao in New York

(Minghui.org) Nearly 10,000 Falun Dafa practitioners from over 50 countries paraded in New York City on May 13, 2016 to celebrate the 17th World Falun Dafa Day.

The Divine Land Marching Band led the three-and-a-half-hour parade across Manhattan’s 42nd Street, from the United Nations on the east side, through Times Square, to the Chinese Consulate on the west side.

The parade was comprised of three sections: introducing Falun Dafa, stopping the persecution in China, and supporting the 230 million who have quit the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and its youth organizations.

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A middle-aged tourist from Beijing said he had watched the parade for a long time and was moved by its tremendous scale. Yet he had only seen part of the first section.

All the Answers are in Zhuan Falun

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Practitioner Jorge Gimeno from Spain said he found the answers to many questions about life in the book Zhuan Falun.

Jorge Gimeno has come to New York City every May since he took up the practice of Falun Dafa in 2010. He enjoys meeting so many fellow practitioners and hopes that more people will come to appreciate the beauty of Falun Dafa from the grand parade.

“My whole life changed after I practiced Falun Dafa,” Gimeno said. He had been wondering why some people have almost everything and are happy and many others have very little and are unhappy. He had been looking for happiness for years, and says that Falun Dafa gave him the answers he was looking for.

He noticed that many Chinese people still don’t know the truth about Falun Dafa because of the negative propaganda from Chinese state-controlled media. “If they open their hearts to embrace the truth about the practice and return to traditional culture, they will find peace in their hearts and experience the beauty of Falun Dafa,” he said.

Practicing Falun Dafa Lifted Me Out of Depression

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Ms. Barbro Plogander from Sweden

Swedish practitioner Barbro Plogander feels lucky that she encountered Falun Dafa 10 years ago. She had been experiencing a very difficult time in her life and had fallen into deep depression. Practicing the exercises brightened her life, lifted her out of depression and filled her heart with confidence and energy to deal with life and work.

“I am very happy to celebrate this special day with fellow practitioners today.” Ms. Plogander said, “Teacher has given me so much. I have to come here in person to thank Teacher. I have been happy in both life and work since I started practicing Falun Dafa. There are no words to describe how amazing it is.”

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Ms. Zheng Jon-bun and Kim Seon-ja from South Korea

Ms. Zheng heard of Falun Dafa and attended the experience sharing conference in Singapore in 1998 where she met Teacher Li Hongzhi.

Practicing Falun Dafa, she regained her health and let go of negative thoughts. She now regards it as her duty to participate in the parade to show the merits of Falun Dafa to the world.

She said that Falun Dafa changed her from fighting for personal gain to being considerate of others. “My name has the character ‘compassion’ in it.” She said. “My family said my personality changed for the better and has become gentler.”

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Ms. Amparo Ambia from Bolivia (left) and Ms. Minerva Cruz from Dominica

“Falun Dafa changed my life for the better. I feel very much alive now, completely different from the past,” said Amparo Ambia.

“Teacher taught us to look at life from a different angle, a higher level. I am very thankful,” she added.

Ms. Minerva Cruz is a finance clerk working for the Dominican government. Her younger brother received a Falun Dafa flier from someone on the street and took it home. She saw the flier and was very interested in it.

She later saw a Falun Dafa booth at a Book Expo and learned the exercises. Her family quickly noticed the changes in her because she used to be a very emotional person.

“My family supports me and my brother practicing Falun Dafa. My parents also help with some Dafa related projects, too,” said Minerva.

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Juan Pablo Boschi (left) and Merleders Gambini, a couple from Argentina.

Juan Pablo Boschi has practiced Falun Dafa for 6 years. He quit smoking and enjoyed improved health of both mind and body soon after starting.

“I know that many Chinese people live in a communist party culture and they have taken in much propaganda. I hope they can listen to what Falun Dafa practitioners say and read some materials about it,” said Boschi.

Chinese version available

Category: Dafa Day Celebrations

Canada: Kingston, Ontario, Proclaims May 13th “Falun Dafa Day”

May 22, 2016

(Minghui.org) Mayor Bryant Paterson of Kingston, Ontario, signed a proclamation designating May 13, 2016, “Falun Dafa Day Honoring Truthfulness Compassion Forbearance.” This is the 8th Falun Dafa Day proclamation issued by the City of Kingston.

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Kingston, Ontario, honors “Falun Dafa Day” with a proclamation.

Chinese version available

Category: Dafa Day Recognition

New Yorkers Learn Falun Dafa Exercises in Central Park

May 21, 2016

(Minghui.org) As a part of the celebration of Falun Dafa Day last week, groups of practitioners from all over the world did the Falun Dafa exercises in New York City’s parks, including Central Park, Bowling Green Park, Battery Park, and Cadman Plaza Park.

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Practitioners do the Falun Dafa exercises in Central Park, Manhattan.

The beautiful scene and peaceful energy interested many tourists and local citizens. Some people stopped and watched, some asked for more detailed information of the local exercise sites, and others learned the exercise movements.

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Marjoram Allen learned the Falun Dafa exercises in Central Park.

Marjoram Allen from California has been practicing Tai Chi. She saw practitioners doing the Falun Dafa exercises near an entrance of Central Park on 7th Ave.

“This practice is more gentle,” she said. “I like it very much. I can enjoy the peacefulness. The energy field is beneficial.” Marjoram says she wants to continue practicing once she gets home.

One woman was surprised to see practitioners doing the exercises everywhere in Central Park. She said she could feel the energy field and asked for detailed information. After a practitioner played a six-minute introductory video on a cell phone, the woman wanted to learn the exercise movements right away.

She said that her mind was occupied by the characters “Dafa” when learning the exercises. The practitioner who taught her the movements gave her a copy of Zhuan Falun(the main book of Falun Gong).

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Gaanthiligge’s family wishes practitioners good luck.

Gaanthiligge from France was traveling in New York with his wife and daughter. His family took many pictures of Falun Dafa exercise sites in Central Park. “I don’t practice Falun Gong, but the peacefulness it manifests is very impressive,” he said, “I know Falun Gong has been suppressed in China. People should pay attention to it. I am concerned about it, too.”

When he learned that about 100 million people in China used to practice Falun Dafa before the persecution started, he smiled, “Everything will be restored sooner or later.”

Rich, a college instructor, was impressed by the practitioners’ march in Manhattan on May 13. He saw groups of practitioners meditating in Central Park the next day, which drew his attention and made him want to learn more.

He said he likes the spiritual component of Falun Dafa and asked practitioners to demonstrate the exercises for him. He indicated that he would tell what he learned to his students.

Chinese version available

Category: Other Community Events

Canada: Celebrating World Falun Dafa Day in Vancouver

May 15, 2016 | By Minghui correspondent Zhang Ran and other Falun Dafa practitioners

(Minghui.org) May 13 is the 17th World Falun Dafa Day and the 24th anniversary of Falun Dafa’s public introduction. It is also the birthday of the founder of the practice, Mr. Li Hongzhi.

Falun Dafa practitioners held activities to celebrate the occasion in front of the Art Gallery in Vancouver on May 8, 2016.

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Falun Gong practitioners celebrating World Falun Dafa Day in front of the Art Gallery in downtown Vancouver on May 8, 2016

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In front of the Art Gallery in downtown Vancouver on May 8

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The waist drum team performs.

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The Divine Land Marching Band

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Falun Gong exercise demonstration by young practitioners

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A man learns about Falun Gong from a practitioner.

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A man learns the Falun Gong exercises.

Many passersby paused to watch the performances. Some asked where to learn Falun Gong, and a few local residents started to learn the exercises.

The exercise demonstration caught the attention of Mr. Huang, who wanted to learn. He followed the practitioners demonstrating the exercises and finished all of the second exercise.

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Mr. Huang (in the blue t-shirt) stopped to learn the exercises. He completed the second exercise by following the practitioners.

It was the first time he had ever done a Falun Gong exercise. He held his arms in the various positions and concentrated for the entire half hour. He said he felt a strong energy and did not feel tired.

Chinese version available

Category: Dafa Day Celebrations

Mayor of Ottawa Proclaims Falun Dafa Day

May 18, 2016 | By Minghui correspondent Ying Zi in Ottawa, Canada

(Minghui.org) The mayors of Ottawa have issued proclamations designating May 13 as Falun Dafa Day in Ottawa since 2001. Mayor Jim Watson has proclaimed for the 6th year May 13 as Falun Dafa Day in Ottawa on behalf of the city council.

The proclamation stated, “Falun Dafa follows the principles of truthfulness, compassion, and forbearance and incorporate them into their daily lives, striving to become better people in all environments and situations.”

In particular, the proclamation noted that the practice transcends the racial and cultural boundaries, and embraces people of all ages, from all walks of life and religious affiliations.

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Chinese version available

Category: Dafa Day Recognition