Recalling A Grand Occasion in 1997 - Changchun Falun Dafa Calligraphy and Photo Exhibition
May 14, 1997 has become an unforgettable day for Falun Dafa practitioners in our area. It was the 5th anniversary of Teacher's introduction of Falun Dafa to the public, and our honorable Teacher's 46th birthday. We arranged a wonderful event to commemorate the occasion, the Changchun Falun Dafa Calligraphy and Photo Exhibition to be held in Teacher's hometown, in the well-known Nanling Gymnasium in Changchun. I will recount several unforgettable memories from our visit to the exhibition.
On Teacher's birthday, the spring rain fell from morning to noon, everything on earth glowed, we saw vitality in everything, the grasses and fresh flowers were fragrant. For a few days before the event, a sandstorm had blocked out the sun. There had been a prolonged drought in China's northeast. The wheat crop had withered and all the grasses and trees were drooping due to lack of moisture.
Practitioners from my area got up before dawn and took a bus from north Liaoning to Changchun. The driver got lost. We were extremely anxious, so the assistant asked the group to silently ask for Teacher's help. A miracle suddenly occurred. A shining Falun appeared in front of the vehicle and directed us to the Gymnasium, and then disappeared.
Practitioners from all over China, Hong Kong and Taiwan were lining up in four lines, waiting to enter the exhibition hall. It was the third day of the exhibition. The exhibition was held only for ten days and it could hold more than 10,000 visitors daily.
We entered the main hall with the others. The glorious Dafa music immediately dissolved the worries of the human world. It was as if we escaped from the human society that strives for fame and self-interest. Teacher's portrait, more than two meters high, was placed on the front wall of the hall. Colorful fresh flowers were placed in front of the portrait, with pine and cypress branches in the background. We stood in front of Teacher's portrait and took a photo (the photo was lost later, after my home had been searched many times).
The eight exhibition rooms could hold more than 10,000 people.
The first room was spacious and stately. The entire room was designed with the theme, "Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance." Multicolored silk banners were hung on all four walls. Practitioners had embroidered all the banners with Teacher's poetry and beautiful words. This was done to sing praise to Teacher for teaching the Fa to save sentient beings.
Several exhibition rooms held pictures that showed calligraphy, drawings, signboards, handicrafts, many touching pictures, computer designs and so on. There were many styles on display. All of them reflected practitioners' pure minds and deep respect for the Fa. Several drawings were marvelous descriptions of what Dafa practitioners saw with their Celestial Eyes. One drawing showed beautiful and magnificent Chinese style buildings and pavilions in other dimension. This righteous and mysterious scenery allowed people to think as if they just stepped into fairyland.
Many people sat in meditation. We saw large drawings of Teacher's law body (1) and gongshen (2) as they manifest in other dimensions. They were all taller than a person's height. These were seen by Dafa practitioners with their Celestial Eye and then reproduced by computer. The energy field there was the strongest. Many people in the exhibition room saw Teacher's law body, and strings of Falun sent out by Teacher from the portrait, rectifying practitioner's bodies. Many supernatural stories occurred in there. One person with a serious leg injury had arrived on crutches. He unconsciously threw away the crutches when leaving and could walk freely.
The picture-and-story book exhibition room made people forget to leave and everyone urged practitioners to practice diligently. Some were stories of practitioners passing tests, some expressed cultivation experiences and others described the process of abandoning unhealthy habits after practicing "Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance." There also were those that showed triumphing over interference and one's demon-nature.
Practitioners from our area displayed a drawing called, "Ladder to Heaven." This drawing calls to people to ponder deeply, and could be called thought provoking. In the drawing, a ladder reaches beyond the three realms. A cultivator is climbing from the first to the next levels. We can see his body changing color at each level, in the order of red, orange, yellow, green, sky-blue, blue, purple, to colorless, until he transcended the three realms. This drawing suggests to the viewer that the cultivation process is as difficult as ascending to heaven. It also forecasts the magnificence of the practice's future, urges people to strive forward, and be diligent unerringly.
Another drawing showed a cultivator sighing in front of a huge mountain. The mountain reached to the sky and was really difficult to climb. Suddenly, Teacher appeared and cut the mountain in half. But, no matter how teacher tried to ease the passage, the cultivator still couldn't get across. Then Teacher divided half the mountain into various tribulations, which he would have to pass on the cultivation path. Finally, the disciple passed tests one by one, and continued diligently on his cultivation path. It provoked deep thoughts, enlightening suggestions and a heartfelt thank you for our honorable Teacher.
There was another drawing named "Attachments." It clearly described the various attachments that the cultivator needs to abandon. It received high mention during the exhibition, and recognition from fellow practitioners.
The last exhibition room was prepared for practitioners to do on site calligraphy and painting. One could find pens, ink and paints, needed for such activities. Several famous calligraphers were there to write "Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance" and quotes from Teacher's articles for those attending. Afterwards, I heard these respected elderly men were the organizers of the exhibition.
There was a visitors' book. Many practitioners wrote their deepest and heartfelt feelings in the book, thanking Teacher for his kindness and salvation of humankind! Practitioners in Changchun worked round the clock for seven days to prepare for the exhibition. They recounted the miracles that happened during that period. It was said that one day late at night, practitioners felt hungry. What did they find? Much food and drinks placed on the side. After finishing the food, they asked each other if anyone knew where the food had come from, but nobody knew. It was midnight and no one had left the area. Had the food come down from heaven? Finally they guessed that the nearby shop owner (a non-practitioner) had delivered the food. They wanted to pay him for the food, but the shop owner said, "This food was given to you by your Teacher." No one could ever explain this mysterious appearance of the food.
During the ten-day exhibition, there were visitors who began to practice Falun Gong immediately. One after the other established a connection with Dafa. Practitioners who were not diligent began to strive forward. Some had earlier been suspicious about the principles of Falun Gong but now became firm in the practice. The visitors were all inspired to different degrees. It built a stable foundation for anti-persecution and truth-clarification today. Just like Teacher said in the article "Seeking Discipleship with Teacher": "Dafa is being spread far and wide. Those who hear about it are looking for it. Those who have obtained it are delighted with it. The number of cultivators is increasing daily and becoming countless."
We sincerely hope that fellow practitioners who have fallen will quickly get up and make the best use of the time left to us.
(1). Law body - A body made of gong and Fa.
(2). Gongshen - A body made of gong (energy).