Vienna, Austria: Candlelight Vigil at the Stephansdom

September 23, 2015 | By Minghui correspondent Rong Fa

(Minghui.org) Falun Gong practitioners who came to the 2015 Falun Dafa Experience-Sharing Fa-Conference in Vienna held a candlelight vigil at the Stephansplatz on the evening of September 18, one day before the conference.

Located at the center of the city, this square is named after the renowned Stephansdom, Vienna’s St. Stephen’s Cathedral, and one of the tallest churches in the world. About two millenniums ago, Christians were suppressed in the Roman Empire over a period of three centuries. They were torn apart by animals, crucified, and burned alive.

Similar things are happening again, in the 21st century. During the past 16 years, Falun Gong practitioners have been severely persecuted in China for their belief in Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance.

According to information received by the Minghui website, more than 3,800 practitioners have lost their lives due to torture while in police custody. Many more have been arrested, detained, imprisoned, tortured, subjected to forced labor, injected with nerve-damaging drugs, and become victims of live organ harvesting.

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Candlelight vigil by Falun Gong practitioners outside St. Stephen’s Cathedral (Stephansdom) on September 18, 2015.

Michael Hofer and Julia Gegenhuber, two college students who were walking by, stopped to find out what the vigil was about. Upon learning that innocent practitioners were being mistreated for their beliefs, they joined the practitioners in the candlelight vigil.

After leaving his email address, Hofer said he would follow up on this human rights violation, and let more people know about it.

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College students Michael Hofer and Julia Gegenhuber joined the candlelight vigil.

A banker who had traveled to many countries, including China, told his wife and daughter, who were visiting Vienna with him, that most Chinese people had been brainwashed by the Communist Party. When practitioner Djan told him about the organ harvesting from living practitioners in China, the banker was surprised by the atrocity. He signed the petition calling for an end to the brutality.

One company CEO said had not been aware of the suppression. He took some materials and said he would tell more people about it.

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A woman signs the petition calling for an end to live organ harvesting in China.

Chinese version available

Category: Other Community Events

Brief Excerpts from Lawsuits Against Jiang Zemin

September 23, 2015 | By a Falun Gong practitioner in Daqing, China

(Minghui.org) Despite the health benefits and moral character improvement that millions of Chinese people experienced after they practiced Falun Gong, Jiang Zemin, former head of the Chinese Communist Party, launched an unprecedented persecution against the practice in July 1999.

To date, more than 170,000 Falun Gong practitioners and others have filed criminal complaints against Jiang with China’s Supreme Procuratorate and the Supreme People’s Court, since the end of May 2015. These two legal offices are required to process all criminal complaints filed by citizens, per a recent ruling by the Supreme People’s Court.

The following accounts are excerpted narratives from criminal complaints provided by Falun Gong practitioners residing in Daqing City, Heilongjiang Province.

It is our hope that through these accounts, those who have been poisoned by the lies and propaganda by the Chinese communist regime will come to realize the goodness of Falun Gong.

Practitioner 1: Kindness Made All the Difference

Before I practiced Falun Gong I always wanted to be in charge and have the final say in my family. I did not consider my husband’s needs, and we had frequent conflicts.

After I joined this cultivation practice, I followed the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance and looked within during conflicts. Our life subsequently became far more harmonious.

My husband and I took care of my parents-in-law while they were living and then their funeral expenses. Therefore, my husband’s sisters and brothers praised me highly. I told them that it was Falun Gong that changed me.

After the onset of the persecution I was detained several times. My husband was implicated because of the Chinese regime’s guilty by association policy. He was not promoted at work because of me. His sisters and brothers encouraged him to divorce me, and he indeed mentioned divorce several times.

One day he slapped me. I did not fight back, but told him that since he was under pressure because of me, he could slap me again if it made him feel better.

My kindness and compassion eventually touched my husband’s heart, the hearts of his family members, and my colleagues.

Practitioner 2: Ex-Buddhist Becomes Falun Gong Practitioner

Before I practiced Falun Gong, I practiced three different types of qigong as well as Buddhism.

While I practiced certain forms of qigong, I felt as if I was possessed by an animal, because I felt as if something was torturing me, and my body ached terribly. My family life also became a mess, and I almost lost my confidence.

I then came across Falun Gong, and it changed my life. After I read Zhuan Falun, the main book of Falun Gong, my body was freed of all problems, illness or otherwise. I was no longer depressed, and my moral character improved. I no longer fought for personal interest and complained, but became considerate and helpful of others.

Practitioner 3: Changed from Irritable to Open-Minded and Cheerful

Before I practiced Falun Gong, I was selfish and narrow-minded. I fought for even trivial gains. My mindset affected my health, and I suffered from migraines, stomachaches, and back pain. Because of the pain, I was irritable, and I took it out on my husband. We quarreled a lot and life was unpleasant.

A colleague introduced me to Falun Gong in 1996. I followed the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance, and tried to be considerate. I no longer desired fame and personal interests. I gradually became more open-minded and cheerful. I recovered from my illnesses and my family life became harmonious.

Practitioner 4: Hot Temper Changed to Friendliness and Kindness

I used to be hot-tempered and got angry with my husband and child. I suffered from migraines and was in extreme pain when they hit me.

My husband started practicing Falun Gong in November 1997. When he played the exercise music, I felt very comfortable. I thus decided to practice Falun Gong and live by the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance.

My hot temper subsided, I became friendly and kind, and my family now lives in harmony. I get along well with my colleagues and neighbors, and all my illnesses have disappeared.

Practitioner 5: The Needs of Others Are Important to Practitioners

I am a university professor who fought for personal gain and interest before I began practicing Falun Gong. When things did not go my way, I complained, felt uncomfortable, and lost my temper. Therefore, over time I came down with illnesses, including anemia.

After I practiced Falun Gong, I followed the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance, and tried to let go of my bad habits. My mind was at peace and I became healthy.

My moral character improved, and I became tolerant toward my husband, and took care of him. I started to cooperate at work, help colleagues, and do more quality work.

When I learned that a very sick four-year-old boy had been refused treatment because his family could not afford the medical expenses, I donated 20,000 yuan.

Falun Gong teaches its practitioners to be good people. I am a cultivator, so I could not stand by and let this little boy die.

Practitioner 6: Recovery from Late-Stage Uterine Cancer

I was diagnosed with late-stage uterine cancer in November 1997, but one of my friends introduced Falun Gong to me in early 1998.

My body stopped aching and bleeding five days after I started practicing. I returned to work after 20 days.

I used to be domineering, and made my husband do my bidding. After I began practicing Falun Gong, I realized that I should respect him and be considerate. We now live in harmony.

Practitioner 7: So Many Benefits from Falun Gong

Before I started practicing Falun Gong in 2014, I had been a Buddhist for 20 years.

Yet, I used to suffer from many serious illnesses, including an abnormal heart rate, damaged bronchial tubes, and a degenerative disorder of my central nervous system. Because of these disorders, I had to undergo a number of surgeries and take a lot of medication. However, my health did not improve.

After I had practiced Falun Gong for six months, I no longer had any illnesses, and finally had a healthy body.

Practitioner 8: Seeing the Falun Gong Principles

When I began practicing Falun Gong on March 8, 2012, I wanted nothing more than to be free of my illnesses. My blood supply was reduced due to a coronary artery obstruction, which also affected my brain. Because of a muscle weakness, one of my eyelids could not open.

After I practiced Falun Gong for a year, I came to understand the principles of Falun Gong, and no longer worried about my illnesses. I suddenly realized that I was fine in body and mind.

Practitioner 9: Back Pain Gone After Three Days

My husband always mistreated me because we were poor, and I also did not treat him well. I lost my temper and we often fought.

To make ends meet, I worked hard, which caused me to develop back pain, but I could not afford medical treatment.

I started practicing Falun Gong in 1996, and without spending a penny, my back pain disappeared after three days of practicing.

The practice requires me to follow the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance, and to be considerate. I now get along well with my husband and family, and we live in harmony.

Practitioner 10: Recovered from Severe Rheumatism

Before I practiced Falun Gong, I was diagnosed with rheumatism after giving birth to my child. I had severe pain in my head and back, and I had to wear heavy clothes, even in summer.

After just one month of practicing Falun Gong, I felt as if I was reborn.

Practitioner 11: Falun Gong Helped Me Eliminate Bad Habits

I still remember all the illnesses that plagued me before I practiced Falun Gong. My heart, stomach, and liver were all unstable, and I also suffered from a kidney disorder.

A colleague introduced me to Falun Gong, and told me that the cultivation practice had amazing health benefits. Sure enough, after three months of practice, I recovered, and no longer needed any medication.

My moral character improved, I no longer lost my temper, and I got along well with my colleagues. I also gave up alcohol, tobacco, and gambling. I now focus on trying to be a person who benefits society.

Chinese version available

Category: Improving Oneself

Officers Awaken to Falun Gong Truths

September 23, 2015 | By a Falun Gong practitioner in China

(Minghui.org) I live in Puxing, Sichuan Province, where a county fair was held on August 18, 2015. A practitioner arrived early in the morning to talk to people about Falun Gong.

Police Officer Chuckled and Walked Away

She spoke to a villager and gave him a flier about Falun Gong. The villager placed the flier in a basket on his bicycle.

The owner of a shoe store suddenly appeared, snatched the flier from the basket, and shouted, “Falun Gong people are handing out fliers again!” He then gave the flier to a policeman who was standing nearby. He told the officer that practitioners had been distributing fliers every day at the fair.

The officer chuckled, put the flier in his pocket, and walked away.

A Kindhearted Chief of Police

A practitioner and I were taken to a detention center in 2011. The head of the detention center was kind to us.

Whenever he introduced a new guard around, he checked on us, and asked how we were doing. The guard knew then that the chief would not tolerate that practitioners would be persecuted.

Several years later, I ran into the chief at a market. I greeted him, but he did not appear to recognize me. I reminded him that I was detained a few years ago, and I thanked him for his kindness. He then remembered me.

I encouraged him to withdraw from the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) to protect himself from future disasters, and he agreed happily.

The chief was kind to practitioners, and understood the goodness of Falun Gong. I believe that he will receive blessings.

Chinese version available

Category: People in China Awaken to the Truth