Thoughts Triggered by the Singapore Incident
Last night, after reading the March 29th report from Reuters, I learned that a Singapore court sentenced seven practitioners of Falun Gong to four weeks in jail on Thursday for obstructing police and gave the maximum fine of S$1000 (USD $566) to eight others for holding a rally without a permit.
I was very shocked upon learning this news. It seems that Jiang Zemin is the only person in the world who relates Falun Gong to illegal activities. How come Singapore agreed with Jiang Zemin who suppresses Falun Gong and faces strong world criticism?
Fortunately, Agence France Presse gave a follow-up report on March 30th in which I discovered that the Singapore police clearly denied this punishment was directed at Falun Gong. Singapore police said in a statement that "Singapore's laws are fair and equal to all," and that the penalty was targeting individuals who violated the rules and was not against Falun Gong. I felt a bit relieved seeing that Singapore basically had no hostility against Falun Gong. But at the same time, I also felt that the incident involved quite complicated concepts and principles that are worth discussing.
1. Unusual Within the Usual Should Be Treated with Exceptions
For the Singapore Police and Justice division that perform their duties according to Singapore laws, this incident might appear very common. However, under the current harsh and sensitive environment in which Jiang Zemin is abusing his power to brutally persecute Falun Gong practitioners, this incident has been given extensive attention and treated as a signal of the Singapore government's position on Falun Gong by the international communities. Even though it was just an internal matter within Singapore's administration and Singapore showed no hostility towards Falun Gong, the fact that it was handled without exception has led all the media to say that "Singapore is treading on Falun Gong, so on and so forth," while in fact Singapore was just dealing with people who violated its rules. Moreover, this incident lent the infamous Jiang Zemin group an opportunity to promote their propaganda and fool the Chinese populace by saying that Jiang has an ally in the international community.
This public effect certainly contradicts the initial intention of Singapore's government and its Police that treated this incident as routine matter. However, the fact that they ignored the unusual background of this incident has led to results that are not that positive.
2. The Law Is Used to Serve Virtue; It Should not Be Used to Restrict Virtue
Back in ancient China, citizens all knew that they should "respect the Gods; restrict the self; do good deeds to accumulate virtue", and that everyone was equal in front of ethics and virtue. At that time the society had no need for law. It was truly governing by virtue. Of course, with the declining morality nowadays, it is impractical to maintain social order by asking everyone to observe high moral standards. Therefore, all the countries in the world are imposing various external mechanisms such as laws to maintain social order. It would be a good thing if the law could be enforced fairly, and help restrict the deteriorating human morality. However, anything going to an extreme and to the absolute will go against the original intentions.
The Singapore police should have given some exception to the vigil held by Falun Gong practitioners in remembrance of those who died of vicious persecution for upholding their belief in China, yet they seemed to have gone overboard by stressing certain parts of the rules without looking at the significance of the massive suppression of Falun Gong in China. No wonder such a harmless vigil that aimed at suppressing the bad and praising the good, as well as promoting morality, was turned upside down and distorted beyond recognition, while the pure and peaceful side of it was almost completely ignored by the media and the public. Are virtue and law not equally important in current society? Laws are supposed to be supplement to "governing by virtue," yet in Singapore they restricted virtue that plays a fundamental role in people's hearts. In my opinion, this was very inappropriate.
3. All Falun Dafa Practitioners from Singapore Should Follow the Teaching of Our Teacher, Deeply Search Inside themselves and Cultivate Steadfastly
Currently in the process of Fa-rectification, clarifying the truth, validating the Fa and exposing the evil are of great importance. Not only will they affect whether we can reach consummation, but they will also affect the overall Fa-rectification and the tens of billions of sentient beings who may obtain the Fa in the future. The future of Singapore is yet to be created by people in Singapore. Whether Singapore's practitioners can fundamentally believe in Fa, and whether they can actively spread the Fa and explain the truth have a far-reaching impact on whether the predestined people from Singapore can break away from malicious rumors and whether they can correctly understand Fa.
From an outsider's point of view looking at this Singapore incident, it is not difficult to see that the fifteen practitioners involved in this incident are determined in Fa and have a clear comprehension of Fa-rectification. Unfortunately, their misunderstanding of Singapore's environment and police, their personal attachments that were not eliminated and their lacking consideration of the entire Fa-rectification process have stained the reputation of Dafa in Singapore and wasted an opportunity to communicate with Singapore society and clarify the truth to Singapore citizens, leaving a loophole for the vicious Jiang Zemin to take advantage of.
If the practitioners in an area comprehend the Fa well, the spreading of Dafa will be done well in that area and people will have a better understanding of Dafa. Moreover, the degree of people's acceptance of the truth will be greater as well. Therefore, I suggest that all Singapore practitioners calm down to learn from this incident and study the Fa with a clear and clean mind. If everyone can genuinely let go of acquired notions and cultivate himself steadfastly, we may uplift our level as a whole, which in turn will bring bright future to Singapore.
Finally, I urge the Singapore government, the police, and the 15 Falun Gong practitioners to actively and positively communicate with each other and break the current not-so-positive situation. If they could resolve this with reason, that would be a beautiful story in history---"selflessness in the heart turns adversity into fortune."
March 30, 2001