Indiana: Falun Gong Procession Shines at the Indianapolis 500 Festival Parade (Photos)
(Clearwisdom.net) On May 28, 2005, the sky was clear in Indianapolis and everywhere was brimming with a holiday atmosphere. The 48th Indianapolis 500 Festival Parade was held in the downtown area. Nearly 300,000 spectators watched the parade in person. Many TV stations including CBS, ESPN2, WISH-TV channel 8 and a number of radio stations came to cover the event. The parade sponsors selected 80 organizations from across the U.S. to participate in the performance. The Mid-U.S. Falun Dafa Association's "Flag and Drum Troupe", which shined in 2004 Chicago Thanksgiving Parade, was invited to take part in the event and served as the only oriental representative.
"Flag and Drum Troupe" composed of Falun Gong practitioners
Falun Gong practitioners performing the "Lotus Flower Dance"
Displaying the beauty and sacredness of Falun Dafa to 300,000 spectators
The Mid-U.S. Falun Dafa Association brought the "Flag and Drum Troupe" and "Fairies' Lotus Flower Dance" to this parade. A huge banner imprinted with the words, "Falun Dafa" in Chinese and English led the procession. The practitioners' dresses were bright and colorful. The golden exercise uniforms, coupled with the big red Tang Dynasty drums, brought people something new and fresh. The rhythmic drums stirred people's hearts. Banners and flags with the Chinese and English words, "Falun Dafa" stood tall in the procession. Banner carriers dressed in blue exercise uniforms held flags with the words, "Truthfulness-Compassion-Tolerance" and "Falun Dafa is great". They constantly changed their formations and weaved in the drum troupe. Accompanied by "Drum Music with Mighty Power", the flag and drum troupe's harmonious performance presented a celebration scene in which brave warriors returned in triumph. A dance troupe consisting of eight women practitioners followed. They performed the "Fairies' Lotus Flower Dance." Melodious music and graceful dances displayed joyfulness and peace to people.
One of the features of this parade was that there was a podium every 100 meters or so. When the Falun Dafa practitioners' procession passed by each of these podiums, the host introduced to the spectators, "Let's welcome the Mid-U.S. Falun Dafa Association! The 'Flag and Drum Troupe' composed of 28 standard bearers and 28 drummers who are dressed in traditional Chinese costumes is truly beautiful! Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, originated from ancient Chinese cultivation practice. It cultivates the universal characteristics of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance and includes meditation and exercises. Since it was introduced to the public in 1992, it has attracted a hundred million people to practice the cultivation. Currently, Falun Dafa is practiced in more than 60 countries over the world. Thank you for coming to Indiana!" In this way, the 300,000 spectators got a chance to hear about Falun Dafa. From the beginning to the end along the 2-mile-long route, wherever practitioners passed by, joyful cheers and warm applause could be heard. Spectators waved to the practitioners, some even making the Heshi gesture to express their appreciation to practitioners.
A lot of Chinese people also watched the parade. Upon seeing the practitioners' procession, some Chinese people who leaned about the truth of Falun Dafa could not help expressing their admiration. A Chinese person said, "Seeing the Falun Gong procession, we have all sorts of feelings. We are proud of you. You are the only Chinese group that took part in such a grand American parade. What you presented is the most traditional Chinese culture. Only you are able to accomplish this. We really admire you!" After the parade concluded, event organizers and spectators told practitioners, "You are wonderful!" "Thank you!"
Local news broadcasted that evening positively and enthusiastically introduced the Falun Gong practitioners' procession. The 45-second news segment mentioned, "The Mid-U.S. Falun Dafa Association's procession left a deep impression. The principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance that they spread to the entire world came to Indiana."