(Clearwisdom.net) Editors' note: Throughout history, the theme that a nation's fate is closely tied to the virtue of its leaders and people has been prevalent in both Chinese and Western culture and lore. Many wise, virtuous kings have led their nations to peace and prosperity, while conversely, moral decay in high places has led to the downfall of great empires. These articles are meant to serve as a reminder and wake-up call for those who are leading or participating in large-scale acts of violence and injustice. As Teacher Li Hongzhi said in Essentials for Further Advancement, "When people do not have virtue, natural calamities and man-made disasters will abound."

A massive natural gas explosion occurred at the Baishan City Jiangyuan County Fuqiang coal mine in Jilin Province, killing at least 39 people. The previous day, a coal mine in Shanxi Province flooded and 15 miners drowned. China's mining industry safety record is disastrous. In the six months from January to June 2002, official reports show that 3,393 people have died due to mining incidents.

At 6:40 pm on July 2, 2002, a rare and severe thunderstorm raining down hail hit Zhangjia Village in Dali County, Shaanxi Province. This storm lasted for 30 minutes, and with its destructive gusts of wind, the storm blew over or lifted 10,000 jujube trees, causing an economic loss of up to 10 million Yuan (one US Dollar equals approximately eight Yuan).

On July 1 in Guangdong Province, a severe thunderstorm hit the city of Maoming, lasting for 3 days. The storm caused severe flooding, damaged 47 towns, affected 350,000 people, trapped 20,000 residents, and resulted in two deaths. Economic loss from the storm amounted to 263,000,000 Yuan.

In Guangdong Province, rising water levels in the He River in Fengkai District affected 630,000 local residents. Economic loss from this disaster amounted to 100 million Yuan.

According to the Hunan Province Flood and Drought Control Center reports, the thunderstorm which hit the province on June 13 caused severe damage. The storm affected 10,349,000 people in over 12 cities, 80 counties, and 1,129 villages. Total economic damages amounted to 4,728,000,000 Yuan.

Since June of this year, approximately 20 provinces, including Guangxi, Guangdong, Guizhou, Sichuan, and Hunan have been continuously hit by severe thunderstorms. Weather experts predicted that flood situations will be extremely severe this summer. According to the predictions, future rainfall will be concentrated around Changjiang River and North Changjian districts. The area affected this year is expected to be larger than in other years.

Chinese versions of these stories available at