Validating the Fa at the Chinese Consulate in Toronto
Greetings Master Li!
Greetings, fellow practitioners.
I will be sharing Toronto practitioners' experience of peacefully appealing outside the Chinese Consulate for the past few years. Please, kindly point out any mistakes.
Since Jiang started the irrational persecution of Falun Gong, Toronto's practitioners have launched a full range of activities to assist Master Li in rectifying the Fa -- from meditation, hunger strikes, press conferences, round the clock candlelight vigils, to a public mock trial of Jiang Zemin, and demonstrations of torture tactics used by Jiang's group. It is war between good and evil in the other dimensions, which is vigorously displayed in this dimension.
This peaceful appeal seems like a simple task. One does not have to have good English skills or be technically gifted. Many participants go easily unnoticed. From the very beginning until now it seemed easy; we refer to it as "The Consulate Duty."
In July 2001, Jiang's group increased the intensity of cruel persecution towards Falun Gong practitioners. Their atrocities outraged Toronto's practitioners. A Western woman practitioner led the peaceful petition in front of the Chinese Consulate. Next, an elderly Chinese woman with a young child joined in. Successively, other practitioners joined. A hunger strike appeal followed. We became aware that we should be at the Chinese Consulate all the time to suffocate and eradicate the evil. Our peaceful appeal will persist until the persecution ends.
From September 2001 to the present, 80 practitioners have participated in the peaceful appeal in front of the Chinese Consulate many times. The youngest is a middle-school student; the oldest is 75 years old. The elderly account for the majority of participants. Regardless of severe weather, we all persist in clarifying the truth, exposing the evil and promoting Dafa in front of the Chinese Consulate for the past three years.
Some considered the Chinese Consulate as Beijing's Tiananmen Square. So long as we stand in front of the consulate we are suffocating and eradicating the evil, because we consider it the headquarters of evildoings. This is what the evil fears most. This is the reason we have been keeping up our relentless efforts in our peaceful appeals.
We realized that the process of clarifying truth in front of the consulate is eradicating the evil. While we are saving living beings, we are discarding personal attachments. Through this process we improve ourselves and validate the Fa (1).
1. Correcting One's Attitude, Purifying Oneself
What attitude should we have? Why are we standing in front of the Chinese Consulate? As we enhance our understanding in the Fa, we rectify our attitude and minds; we eliminate any disturbances, purifying our minds. By doing so, we will be able to do a good job in spreading the Fa and clarifying the truth.
We overcame many obstacles in several years. Some practitioners had all kinds of worries: not having the courage to speak about the evildoings loudly, fearing that we might not be understood and be an annoyance, not knowing how to deal with an uninterested lack of wisdom when handling different audiences, thinking those that shun us are not worth saving; thinking we were the greatest, which made us seem rude and impatient, and forcing others to accept our materials, and thinking that the more materials we distributed the better.
We practice to make ourselves the best we can and to correct our characters. Through Fa study, sharing experiences with others and increasing our righteous thoughts, we strive to be better each time. We realize that when we are pure and our hearts/minds are filled with mercy, the effects of truth clarification works best.
When a young fellow abruptly asked an elderly lady who was standing in the snow, "Why are you standing here?" She replied, "I am waiting for you!" This simple answer from her heart melted any hatred the young fellow had. He accepted her flyer.
We encounter all kinds of people in front of the Chinese Consulate. Some shower us with mocking comments; some hurl invectives, all of which tested our xinxing (2). A middle-aged man asked us how much we get paid from the United States: $30 or $50 per day for distributing materials? We told him we cultivate Zhen, Shan, Ren (3), we want to be good people; we do not tell lies, we never receive any money from anyone; we come voluntarily; using our own money to pay for transportation and materials. We want to speak on behalf of our dear practitioners in China who are being wrongfully persecuted. He walked away silently after hearing our explanation.
Master said in "Teaching the Fa at 2004 Western US Fa conference,"
"I've told you before that Shan (4) isn't something pretended, nor is it a state that's just maintained on the surface. Shan truly comes from within and can only be attained and embodied through cultivation. When you're before sentient beings, as soon as words come out of your mouth and as soon as your thoughts emerge, they are able to disintegrate bad elements and the bad things that poison the world's people and that exist in people's minds. And then people will come to understand, and you'll be able to save them."
2. Be Flexible and Tactful in Truth-clarification
Master said, "I have repeatedly pointed out that those who practice cultivation in the society of everyday people must conform to the ways of everyday people's society." ("Cultivation and Work," Essentials for Further Advancement)
How do we awaken the deceived public? First, our words and deeds must let the public understand us and let them accept the truth with conscience and kindness, revealing to them that they are deceived with fabricated rumors created by Jiang's group. Most people are moved by emotion; using such emotion we could help them to understand the truth. Many treat the Falun Gong question to be a very sensitive issue, and some of them are deceived too deeply; so even if they want to understand us, they fear being implicated and losing personal benefits and hence are afraid to contact us. We cannot be rigid, and we should use different approaches with different people.
Our conduct can move people. Our polite smiles and greetings can have a positive effect. People are then more willing to accept our materials and listen to the truth.
Two elderly practitioners -- a married couple -- took the trouble to familiarize themselves with the surroundings of the Chinese Consulate in order to provide conveniences for the general public who came for consular services. The couple provides information such as directions to the subway station, train station, photo studio, post office, public telephone, restaurants and coffee shops. They even have coins ready for the roadside parking meters and help to pay before the meter expires. Most people are moved by our kindness and are willing to listen to us and accept our materials.
Some were deceived and brainwashed by the Chinese propaganda before coming overseas. Many want to understand the real situation, but are hindered by their own notions. A middle-aged man stood in front of the display board, pointed at the picture of Wang Lixuan and her child and asked, "Is this real?" We answered, "It's real." He shook his head in disbelief. We asked him, "Are you willing to let your spouse and son go through such an act of torture?" He said, "Absolutely not." After he earnestly listened to the truth about Falun Gong he nodded again and again with tears in his eyes. We shook hands and he said, "You continue with your display and distribute materials here; my last name is Cao. I believe you!"
A Chinese garbage truck driver frequently passed through the consulate. He saw our actions and understood that we all are good people. He was touched and frequently gave us hot coffee. Gradually he learned that Falun Gong is good and that it will promote a healthy body, so he started doing the Falun Gong exercises. Then for a long time we did not see him. One day he came and told us that a miracle had happened to him. One day during his work he suddenly fell from the vehicle, causing a fracture to a cervical vertebra. His doctor said he was seriously injured, and that even after treatment he would either be paralyzed or half-paralyzed. But a while later he recovered completely. His doctor said it was a miracle. He too thinks it is a miracle.
Some people started out with hatred towards us as they were deceived by the Chinese propaganda, but when we found a general topic that they accepted, such as Jiang betraying his country, or the corruption in Mainland China, problems of unemployment, destroying citizen's housing, downward sliding morality and even the persecution of Falun Gong, their attitude changed. They are then willing to read our materials.
It looks as though many people are awakening, but there are still many minds being deeply poisoned by the lies. We feel our heavy responsibility in offering salvation to more people within this limited time.
3. Exposing and Eradicating the Evil
For three years we relentlessly stayed in front of the Chinese Consulate 24 hours a day, exposing the evil through telling the facts. People are looking, and they are pondering.
Our demeanor has moved many who came for Consulate services, and has moved average passers-by as well. They have begun to understand and have started to show their support. From stranger to friend, people even come forward to greet us on their own initiative: some wave to us, others make the Heshi gesture to express their regards. Nearby residents have given us flowers and beverages to express their sympathy and support.
The Consulate is not happy with the growing support and understanding from the public. In fact, this Consulate is one of the overseas enablers of the "610 Office" (5). They create disturbances, they incite hatred and spread negative propaganda. They send undercover agents to the Parliament and the community to harass, to destroy our reputation, and to fabricate rumors and stir up hatred between us and the people in the community.
At first, the Consulate staff deliberately sprayed us with water when watering their outdoor plants. They tried to disturb our truth clarification activities by installing a fence, but by our sending forth righteous thoughts, their ugly behavior turned out to be nothing more than practical jokes.
Even the staff at the Consulate have changed their attitude. Our polite smiles and greetings touch them, making them feel happy.
When a practitioner saw a consular employee coming to water the plants again, he was afraid that he might ruin our poster. But before we could move, he said he would not spray our things, and that we did not have to remove anything. After watering the plants behind the poster, he left. We told him that he is such a good person, and he smiled.
Master said, "Because the world's people have woken up, right now this persecution that the evil created is getting harder and harder to sustain. Around the globe the evil beings are losing the environment they need to do evil, and in China too they are losing the environment they need." ("Teaching the Fa on Easter, 2004, at the New York Fa Conference") Even the employees at the consulate are changing their hearts, yet we have to do better in order to awaken their lost souls.
Master said at the 2004 Chicago Fa Conference, "Although the old forces no longer exist, the things they arranged in the Three Realms are still having an effect." ("Teaching the Fa at the 2004 Chicago Conference")
The Chinese Consulate tried confusing the public with huge amounts of slanderous information. Many were deceived. It was a setback for us; hence we have to continue our truth-clarification efforts and sending forth righteous thoughts to completely eliminate the evil.
4. Fa-rectification and Cultivation
Regardless of harsh weather conditions, for three years we have been there in front of the Consulate, 24 hours a day.
An older practitioner couple took responsibility for "Consulate Duty," as they live close to the Consulate. They always sit in for those who cannot make it. They do both morning and afternoon shifts most of the time. Often they did not even have time for their meals, but they did not have any complaints.
A 60-year-old male practitioner starts at 10:00 a.m. and remains until noon at the Consulate. Then he rushes off to Chinatown, carrying bags of materials to hand out for truth clarification purpose. He leaves Chinatown around 3:00 p.m. and it will be late when he gets home.
Those who do the night shift have their own difficult challenges as well. Some come straight after work in the middle the night. And their shift lasts until 8:00 a.m., meaning that they do not have time to sleep. Yet, they did not ask for a change in their shift. Even if they have to take care of their families, children, work and school, they still find a time slot to go to the Consulate.
We have an elderly woman practitioner who assumed the task of duty monitor. She always sits in or finds a replacement for those who cannot make it. It is challenging, as she has to consider many factors like age, transportation, distance and weather before she finds someone for any open time slot.
These past few years, our daily presence in front of the Consulate gate unavoidably caused some inconvenience to the surrounding life of the neighborhood. A few people developed a negative opinion about us, but after explaining the truth of Falun Gong and the persecution, their attitude changed. In order to further improve our relations with the neighborhood, we mobilized practitioners to make 400 paper lotus flowers and presented them to the neighbors to express our gratitude for their kind support. A practitioner said that her daughter's teacher happened to live in that neighborhood. Her teacher took the lotus flower and showed it to her class, telling them the truth about Falun Gong and how to fold the lotus flower. This act helped to purify so many little children's minds.
Western practitioners join the truth clarification and Fa-promoting activities to help boost the process. They are very good at truth-clarification, and they are very energetic. When they talk to the English-speaking Chinese public, the public seems more willing to listen and accept our materials.
Many practitioners seem very ordinary, as they do not speak much in general or during Fa conferences, but their hearts and minds are full of righteous thoughts, and they continue to cultivate and eliminate their own attachments. Though there might be some setbacks, we all know that strong righteous thoughts will eliminate all the evil.
We are at the final stage of eliminating the evil and offering people salvation. We should not take it lightly. We have a great responsibility. We should improve our xinxing at all times and never give the evil an opportunity to take advantage of us. We should try our best to conform and be understood by general society.
Dafa has been around for 12 years. We are honored to be with Master during this period. Master is leading us, reminding us, correcting us. Please, do not let this precious opportunity slip by. Do the three things that we are told to do -- study the Fa, explain the facts and send righteous thoughts. Eliminate all evil. Let all living beings know that Falun Gong is great, that Zhen, Shan, Ren is great! We have to complete our grand mission that has been entrusted to us.
(1) Fa: Law and principles; the teachings of Falun Dafa.
(2) Xinxing: heart or mind nature, moral character.
(3) Zhen, Shan, Ren: Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance.
(4) Shan: Compassion, Kindness, Benevolence.
(5) The "610 Office" is an agency specifically created to persecute Falun Gong, with absolute power over each level of administration in the Party and all other political and judiciary systems.