Hints from the Divine Performing Arts -- "Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance" Is the Origin of Traditional Chinese Culture
(Clearwisdom.net) It has been almost a week since the Divine Performing Arts presented its four shows in the Nokia Theater in Los Angeles. The divine music; waves of drumming; heavenly, graceful dancing--this soul-shaking experience is still ringing in my ears, echoing in the atmosphere, and appearing in front of my eyes as well as in my dreams. I saw the entire show with tears in my eyes. I kept asking myself, "Why did the Divine Performing Arts' Chinese New Year Spectacular shake me so deeply?"
Before seeing the show, I longed for something like this "divine" cultural expression. Using all my imagination, my wings of thoughts never even approached the palpable effect of this live performance. The whole show was just so amazing! The unprecedented music soaked into every cell, be it loud or soft, happy or sad. The bright colors and magical scenery brought me to another dimension that was far from this dusty world.
Each dance was exquisite, each beating of the drums was soul-awakening, each story was so moving, each line of the lyrics speaking to the original goodness at the bottom of every audience member's heart. The scenery broke through the boundaries of human imagination. Every element was permeated by divine culture, and that made the performance a great masterpiece.
I saw a Caucasian audience member crying in the hall. She said, "It's so beautiful, so moving. I liked every performance." She could not find words to describe the excellent qualities of the show, and said, "Every performance is the same, yet each one is different."
I then asked her which one moved her most. She answered, "The two about the practitioners cultivating 'Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance.'"
I was not surprised by her answer, because I felt the same way. The performances depicted how female Falun Gong practitioners are being brutally treated, and they caused even my two friends' husbands to tear up. One showed three female Falun Gong practitioners being tortured so that the audience could see their blood and tears and their firm faith. "Awakening" started with kind cultivators of "Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance" being beaten by the police for clarifying the truth to people. In the face this police brutality, awakened people stood up to protect the practitioners and safeguard justice and goodness. That moving scene precipitated thunderous applause from the audience--they could see a bright future.
Amidst thunderous clapping, I suddenly realized why those two programs were the most moving; "Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance" is the root of traditional Chinese culture and the motive for people to pursue goodness.
"Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance" enables everything to exist, and it is the origin of everything, including the creation and existence of the five thousand-year-old traditional Chinese culture. There is Truthfulness and the serene and pure Dao; there is Compassion and the mercy of Buddha; there is Forbearance and the Confucian principle of tolerance. The Dao preached by Laozi, Buddhism taught by Sakyamuni, and Confucianism passed on by Confucius all originated from "Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance." They formed the essence of the colorful culture that shines in Chinese history with the lights of Confucianism, Buddhism, and Daoism.
I feel so sorry for those born in mainland China in recent decades, including myself, because we do not know the culture of our ancestors. I was born at the end of the Cultural Revolution. I have no knowledge of genuine traditional Chinese culture. The history books we used had all been changed by the Communist Party. We only know the important historical stories superficially, with only a vague understanding of their true inner meanings. In China, Confucian, Buddhist, and Daoist principles are criticized all the time. The arts promoted by the Party are used to enhance the evil Party. Under the banner of "promoting traditional culture," they admit to themselves that the arts "serve a political purpose."
After leaving China, I began thinking about what exactly Chinese traditional culture is and discovered that there was more Chinese culture preserved in Taiwan than in the Mainland. I am grateful for the Divine Performing Arts Chinese New Year Spectacular. It has helped me find the essence and origin of five thousands years of Chinese traditional culture; it has helped me find my roots.
January 28, 2008