Relinquish the Pursuit of Comfort, Cultivate Diligently, and Walk Our Paths Well
(Clearwisdom.net) The following only begins to describe the countless crimes committed by the Hohhot City Women's Forced Labor Camp against Falun Gong practitioners. I would like to tell fellow practitioners how we can cultivate diligently and walk the final path of Fa rectification well. When you are lazy and don't want to get up in the morning to do the exercises, do you know that imprisoned practitioners don't give up their firm belief in Dafa even in their very difficult situation? When you cannot work together with other practitioners on a Dafa project, do you know that the detained practitioners think their fellow practitioners are their closest family members in the world? When you don't want to give up your attachments and feel the tests are difficult to pass, do you think about how the situation of detained practitioners is even more difficult?
I cannot express my feelings whenever I remember that the days I was detained at the Hohhot City Women's Forced Labor Camp. It was truly a living hell, with the double torture of mental and physical abuse. Every minute was hard to get through. Every morning we had to get up at 5 o'clock, finish folding the comforters and wash up in five minutes. We then had to do exercises. Before every meal, we were forced to sing the song "Without the CCP There Would Be No New China." If one person didn't open her mouth or the singing was not synchronized, we had to repeat the song until the prison guard was satisfied. We had to finish the meal in five minutes. Once the time was up, the guard would call, "Stand up," and we had to go back to the workshop and continue working.
The conditions in the workshop were terrible. Our work was making gloves, carpets, and lids for wine bottles. The equipment was retired machinery from the 1960s, but the quotas were very high. We worked from 5:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. The roof of the workshop was made of asbestos. The heat coming though the roof in the summer, combined with the heat from the machines, made it feel like a sauna. Sometimes one of us would faint while working, and the guard would say, "Take her to the corridor to get some fresh air." Once she was revived, she was forced to go back to work.
There was one thing I will always remember. From holding the handle on a machine for so many hours, I could no longer open my fingers normally. Every night before I went to sleep I warned myself, "I must stretch my fingers so I will be able to use them tomorrow." One time I was too tired and forgot to stretch my fingers before going to sleep, and the next day I couldn't open my fists. It took much effort to open my hands and stretch each finger. The rule in the labor camp was, "You have to work as long as you are alive." The prison guards tortured us at will. Sometimes we were very tired and sore everywhere, but they still forced us to march over and over.
Whenever there was an investigation, the guards told us to go back to the dorm, and everyone was given a newspaper to read. The guards would lie to the inspection group, and after they left, the guards yelled, "Go back to work!"
Every day at 8:00 p.m. after work, each of us was given a big bag filled with 10,000 "Sterile Chopsticks." We had to use napkins to wrap the chopsticks in pairs before we could go to sleep. If you wrapped 40 pairs in one minute, it took at least four hours to finish wrapping the whole bag. Sometimes, we worked until three or four o'clock in the morning. Shortly after washing up, we had to get up to work again. They tried to destroy us by overloading us with physical labor. Now that I'm out of prison, whenever I see "Sterile Chopsticks" in a restaurant, I get very sad and refuse to use them.
If you think this physical abuse reached the limits of life, the mental abuse was actually worse. In order to "reform" practitioners, the labor camp used various vicious methods. One torture device is called "the little white dragon." It's a whip made of seven wires, covered with rubber. When it hits your body, you can feel the pain into your bones. Some practitioners fainted after just one strike from the whip. The most civilized method of torture was sleep deprivation. Prison guards took turns torturing practitioners this way. Once you became drowsy, they hit you with an electric baton, poked you with needles, and poured cold water on you. This torture could last up to 17 days. Another method was making practitioners "sit in a small cell." The cell was very small, with only one small window. A bucket in the cell served as the only toilet. In summer, there were flies and mosquitoes, and the stench made it hard to breathe.
The labor camp used different methods in attempting to force practitioners to give up their beliefs. Even during meals they gave you two options. In the cafeteria there was a table with a pen and paper on it. If you wrote, "I won't practice any more," and signed your name, you could eat buns made with white flour and dishes with meat. If you didn't sign, you had to eat corn buns with grain husks and boiled vegetables. The corn buns were very hard, and the vegetables were cabbage and potatoes. Some of the potatoes were still dirty, boiled with salt and soy sauce. The food looked black and had a bad smell. In the fall, we put the cabbages that we had grown ourselves into a hole in the yard, then covered them. This was the pickled cabbage that we ate year-round. One summer, I noticed a bag filled with stinky stuff. At first I thought it was garbage, but later I discovered it was the pickled vegetables. Even pigs wouldn't eat it, but we had to eat it year-round.
Some practitioners could no longer stand the pressure and often thought of death. (Note: Suicide and hurting oneself do not comply with the Fa's principles.) For the first several months I was like this. I was always on the lookout for sharp objects, so I could put myself out of my misery, but the prison guards watched us very closely.
One thing horrified me. One time we had a so-called "reform" meeting. One practitioner shouted, "My Master is innocent! Falun Dafa is righteous!" Two guards took her out before she could finish, and one poured a kettle of boiling water down her neck. After that, every time we had such a meeting, there were guards with ropes and towels. If a practitioner just moved her hands to scratch an itch, without even opening her mouth, the guards would stuff her mouth with a towel and take her away.
I have shared about the persecution in the labor camp because I would like to remind fellow practitioners to cultivate diligently and walk their paths well. Don't become lax. When you feel it is very hard, you need to remember that others have it even harder than you. When you can't form one body, think about the practitioners in labor camps that form one body even in that terrible environment.