Recollecting the 1996 Beijing Falun Dafa International Experience Sharing Conference
On October 28, 1996, I participated in the Beijing International Experience Sharing Conference along with a Taiwan delegation. This was a rare international experience sharing conference held in China. The participants came from 14 countries or regions, totaling over 120 people (mostly middle-aged or young people.) On the morning of October 29, the conference began in a conference room on the fourth floor of the Beijing Overseas Chinese Hotel. It was initiated by Swedish and French practitioners and hosted by Taiwan practitioners. The four day meeting opened with representatives from each country or region reporting on and discussing the situations in their respective areas. It was a rich four-day gathering for sharing experiences and performing the exercises together. In this article I wish to share some of the highlights of this great event.
Sharing the Feelings of the Fa Conference
Every experience sharing speech given to the conference was moving and exciting. There is already an article about this, and I do not want to be superfluous here. What I want to talk about is the viewpoints of the professors of medical and scientific research who explained that Falun Dafa is supernormal. They identified that xinxing cultivation could help restore health to the body. Once a person's xinxing improves, his/her body will also improve rapidly. "Cultivation" and "Practice" complement one another. It is cultivation that is the fundamental method for eliminating karma and treating illness. To eliminate karma and eradicate illness one must be truly practicing. The sharing of these precious experiences had a significant impact on many of the intellectuals in Taiwan and they were influenced to learn more about Dafa.
Group Practice in the Mountain of Jietai Temple
Jietai Temple is located in a Beijing suburb. At 6:00 a.m. on the second day of the conference, practitioners from Beijing came to our hotel to take us to the Jietai Temple exercise site. It took over two hours to reach the practice site. When we arrived there, it was already nearly 9:00 a.m. More than one hundred practitioners from all over the world joined three to four hundred local practitioners in quietly performing the standing and sitting exercises. The music and the fresh air brought a truly different feeling to the practice. Although the temperature was about zero degrees Celsius, we were not even slightly influenced by the cold weather and everyone was full of energy and moved smoothly. The experience of doing the exercises in the cold winter provided a test for us all. After the exercises, each of us felt warm throughout our entire body. We then gathered together to take some photos, recording this precious moment.
Practitioners from various countries gathered in small groups to discuss issues or exchange experiences. All of the practitioners from Taiwan had obtained Dafa relatively recently. Some young practitioners shared sad histories but, also talked about the wonderful feeling of attaining the Fa. You could tell from their words and appearances when they were excited, sad or happy. That was really an unforgettable day.
Dividing into Groups to Share Experiences
Beijing practitioners then shared with delegations from each nation separately. Our Taiwan delegation was joined by over 20 Beijing practitioners. Their experience reports were very detailed and vivid. I will give two examples here. First, a practitioner of about 50 years old who was sitting beside me, talked about how she had diseases all over her body before practicing Falun Dafa. She had fevers and was hospitalized for about half a year. The hospital could not find the root cause of the fevers. Doctors could not find a cure for her health problems and so she was sent home. Next, she tried Traditional Chinese Medicine which also had no effect. The Chinese doctor said her kidneys were bad. She thought her whole life was over. Just when she felt desperate, the news spread to her that Teacher Li Hongzhi's Falun Gong was very effective in curing illnesses. So she had one little hope and went to Beijing's Falun Gong class. During the class, " magic" occurred and her health quickly recovered beyond imagination. With such a healthy physical body, you could hardly believe she had struggled with ill health!
The second example is that of another practitioner over 50 years old, who had just one year of junior high school education. She always said she did not have much education. She diligently studied the Fa and learned to read. Every day she would read Zhuan Falun for 3 hours while kneeling down. Gradually the words that she did not know became familiar. She also transcribed Master Li's articles. The bowlegs she was born with made it difficult for her to walk but, gradually her legs became straight. Now she felt light all over her body and walked easily. She practiced Falun Gong for just over one year, and she had so many changes! How amazing this is!
Experience Sharing in Practitioners' Homes
This experience sharing was on a closer, more intimate level. Our Taiwan delegation was divided into 10 groups of three practitioners. Each group went to a different Beijing practitioner's home. Beijing practitioners were all very friendly and told us a lot of precious experiences. They tirelessly answered our questions, from which we felt we improved a lot. Most of them were young scholars.
Everyone had some challenging experience to share with us. Through cultivating Dafa, their physical bodies became stronger and chronic illness disappeared. Especially important was that their xinxing had changed and their outlook on life and the world improved. Their Fa-study group often got together to study the Fa, do the exercises and share experiences. Their xinxing was also improving constantly. The practitioner's home that I went to had a picture frame with the words, "Cultivate Diligently, Reach Consummation". It was reminding every practitioner to not slack off.
Teacher Appears on the Last Night of Conference
On the last day of the conference, in the morning, we did the exercises at Earth Temple Park. In the afternoon, the Swedish delegation invited practitioners to dinner at Fangze Palace (inside Earth Temple). It was arranged so that each table had practitioners from different nations sitting with Beijing practitioners. We discussed and shared. While involved in a warm discussion, suddenly applause and cheers arose. Ah! Our respected Teacher just returned from the USA to meet with us. Teacher appeared in the hall entrance. At that moment, many people went to shake hands with Teacher. I was very excited and tears just flowed down my face, because my dream had just come true!
Teacher told us to continue our dinner and we would talk after we finished. Teacher had been away spreading the Fa in the USA, and we did not think he would be able to return for our conference. We were all excited. Who would still want to eat dinner? So we quickly finished dinner, rearranged the chairs, and invited Teacher to speak. I had very deep feelings about being physically present to listen to Teacher lecture. No wonder many practitioners went to Teacher's classes again and again! When we enter this very spiritual realm, we constantly improve and purify ourselves. Any selfish thoughts are eliminated and when encountering problems we can peacefully handle them. We become better able to more positively look at family and societal issues and live in peace and joy!
Beijing Practitioners Quietly Contributed
Every day, regardless of the time, Beijing practitioners would visit our hotel and kindly correct our exercise movements. Their patience and kindness were moving. These practitioners followed Teacher's request and traveled all over the mountains and plains to spread Dafa. The poor farmers in the rural areas were able to benefit from obtaining Dafa and their illnesses were eliminated. Dafa takes no notice of race, social class, or economic status. All human beings need to be saved. This is Teacher's benevolent thought! Teacher's selfless contribution influences each Falun Dafa practitioner. I recalled Teacher's poem "Assisting Fa" in Hong Yin
Make the wish to save all beings,
Assist Master with the journey in the world;
Aid me in turning Falun,
Fa forms, heaven and earth move.
We have walked over 10 years of hardship and the evil has persecuted us for almost 8 years. Practitioners in mainland China have suffered countless tribulations. Their righteous thoughts and righteous acts have given them great virtue. I truly feel that the journey following Teacher to return to our true original self is coming closer to the end.