Clarifying the Truth Well and More Deeply: Experience Sharing on the Lawsuits Against Jiang
"At present, in addition to a Dafa disciple's own, personal cultivation, you need to do a large amount of things to clarify the facts. So I think that for Dafa disciples clarifying the facts has become a unique way of cultivation for you cultivators today. This has never, ever happened before. And it can be called Dafa disciples' magnificent feat of validating the Fa and saving sentient beings during the Fa-rectification." (From "Teaching the Fa at the 2004 Chicago Conference")
On May 27, the first oral arguments for the case against Jiang were made before the US 7th Circuit Federal Court of Appeals. Before that we had undertaken many truth-clarification efforts, including staging an anti-torture exhibition for three consecutive days at Thompson Center Square and at Federal Plaza in downtown Chicago. After the exhibition, practitioners continued to clarify the truth about Falun Gong and the persecution in China. While taking legal action, as Fa-rectification Dafa disciples, how then do we look at the lawsuit against Jiang with a compassionate and peaceful mind and strong righteous thoughts? How do we continue to follow Teacher's requirements to more extensively and deeply clarify the truth about Falun Gong and the persecution? Fellow practitioners met to share their thoughts on this issue. Below are excerpts from the discussion.
Practitioner A: The Lawsuit Against Jiang Has Something to Do with Every Practitioner
In the course of clarifying the truth for the lawsuit against Jiang, we have learned some lessons. In the beginning of November 2002, a large group of Dafa practitioners died as a result of the persecution. In the beginning of 2003, practitioners in different areas around the world used various means to call for the stop of the persecution and made group efforts to send righteous thoughts. On January 15, 2003, with the help of the strong righteous thoughts of practitioners across the globe, an initial scheduling conference for our lawyer and the judge went smoothly in the United States District Court of the Northern District of Illinois, and the judge also discussed scheduling the next proceeding.
With the first step completed smoothly, we became overly confident and slacked off a bit. Laziness manifested, and we hardly made any truth-clarification efforts to the judicial community anymore, with only very, very few practitioners continuing with diligence. When the scheduled day for the next proceeding approached, most people had almost forgotten about the important case in Chicago. Looking back now, at the time practitioners were very passive and many practitioners made truth-clarification efforts as if they were doing some kind of a job, thinking: "I'll go if I'm told to, and when it's over I'm done." One can imagine the effect of such truth-clarification efforts.
We came to realize that when our one whole body has loopholes or our energy field is not pure, the old forces can take advantage of us. When we encounter a problem, we get back on our feet after we stumble. Through numerous sessions of in-depth discussion after group Fa-study, more and more practitioners became aware of the following: This legal case does not just concern one or two practitioners who have a good command of English or professional knowledge of the law. It is a responsibility that every Falun Gong practitioner shoulders in the Fa-rectification. History has bestowed this responsibility upon Dafa practitioners, and we should live up to our title [of Dafa practitioners]. After a long period of experience sharing, we adjusted our mentality, and more practitioners started to clarify the truth to the judicial community in earnest.
The lawsuit against Jiang is not an issue that just concerns a few people, nor is it the work of just one area, or a new project. It is a new stage in the course of Fa-rectification that has something to do with each and every one of us. The goal of clarifying the truth to the judicial community is not for the sake of the legal case itself. In terms of the legal profession, people in the judicial community all know that we have been using this case as an opportunity to clarify the truth about Falun Gong and the persecution in a more detailed and in-depth manner, and especially to clarify the truth to people in the judicial community whom we seldom had the chance to come into contact with in our daily life.
Many cases against Jiang are in progress around the world. We can look at the judicial community in this ordinary world's level like a human body, with law schools, law academics, lawyers associations, judges, etc., like small joints and acupuncture points in this body. If we can start clarifying the truth to the judicial community on a large scale in different areas, not limiting our efforts to explaining the facts to judges, we can open up each joint and acupuncture point, so to speak. With people's sense of justice emerging, this big whole system will then be unblocked. Since here we have a field of justice, people will have just thoughts.
Practitioner B: Problems Encountered in our Truth-Clarification Efforts
While clarifying the truth to the law profession, I encountered the following problematic questions. "How is this persecution different from persecutions happening in other areas of the world? There are many cases of human rights abuse in different areas of the world with many death cases, why should we care so much about the persecution against Falun Gong?" "This only constitutes a case of human rights persecution, this does not amount to genocide." These are indications that the world's people do not have a clear understanding of the facts, or of the systemic nature and evilness of the persecution.
This phenomenon is directly related to how much we ourselves understand the persecution. We should ask ourselves if we are able to feel from the bottom of our hearts this most systemic and evil persecution ever encountered in human history. Otherwise, we will not be able to clearly explain this to everyday people. Recently, I reviewed the "Illustrations of the Systematic Persecution of Falun Gong by Jiang's Regime" (http://www.clearwisdom.net/emh/articles/2004/6/24/49020.html) and benefited a lot from it. I realized that I didn't really understand the systemic nature and evilness of the persecution.
It is hard for many people to imagine the wide-range, the depth and systemic nature of this persecution. For example, whether it is the media fabricating lies, other propaganda tools, or the cruel treatment of practitioners during the persecution, there is an escalating process happening in a systemic manner. Cruel tortures, forceful brainwashing, hypocritical and deceiving methods have been widely used in prisons and labor camps in different areas. The torture tools and cruel methods are very similar among prisons and labor camps in different areas. The entire persecution has been going on secretly, progressing systematically and escalating step by step. Jiang is responsible for initiating and executing this persecution.
Through contact with my American friends, I discovered that many people have heard or read from the media about Falun Gong and the persecution Falun Gong practitioners have endured, but the majority do not know that Jiang is the major culprit behind this persecution. This indicates that we were not thorough enough in our truth-clarification efforts. When more people are aware of Jiang's crimes and find him guilty in their minds, they will form a big, strong field of justice, with a just sentence by the court being the natural result. As a government by the people, the American government will be guided by the people's will, rather than being manipulated by Jiang and his group's intimidation. From now on when we clarify the truth, we should let more people understand that Jiang is the major culprit of this persecution.
When we talked about putting World War II Nazi war criminals on trial, there was no difference of opinion. People's hearts were also for the trial against Milosevic who committed genocide in recent years. Why? It is because their crimes were widely known by the world's people, who came to have a detailed and shared understanding of these trials. Only by clarifying the truth in a deep, far-reaching and detailed manner in order to let people understand the evil nature of Jiang's persecution against Falun Gong, can the world's people make the right choice, in a clearheaded way.
I remember back when the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners in China just started, we felt as if we were personally being persecuted. However, as time went by, that feeling gradually faded. I remember when I saw torture exhibition for the first time in the New York parade, although it only demonstrated a fraction of what practitioners in China have suffered, I was still very shocked. Actually, it was because I had become somewhat numb toward the persecution. The processing of the lawsuits against Jiang is a long-term challenge to Dafa practitioners. From submitting the case to the step-by-step legal proceeding¡ªit takes a very long time to process the lawsuit. Our true goal is to clarify the truth and save sentient beings. We also want to be able to maintain righteous thoughts on a long-term basis, and infuse this in our truth-clarification efforts. This requires our clear understanding of Fa principles.
Practitioner C: Clarifying the Truth in a Comprehensive Manner
Pictures and the torture exhibition help people understand the persecution through direct visual images and perception, but this large-scale genocidal persecution has broad implications. Although viewers are left with a deep impression after seeing the pictures, if they have not already seen our truth-clarification material, they might not understand what they've seen. Properly explaining to individuals allows them to have a clear understanding of the facts.
When practitioners held the anti-torture exhibition in Chicago, I explained the following issues systematically, just saying enough to make my points to Westerners who came to see the display.
Sometimes I started by talking about the picture or torture tool a viewer was looking at, specifically explaining to the viewer that the extent of cruelty inflicted on practitioners by the use of the tiger bench is far beyond what a picture can portray. This approach deepens their understanding of the truth. Then, I talked about statistics, shifting the focus to the whole picture by giving the death toll resulting from the persecution, or the number of people having been detained. I also cited specific cases that I thought would touch the viewer, based on their character. I spoke about cases involving practitioners of different professions, ages, and gender to help them see the depth and extent of the persecution.
At that point, people became anxious to find out why this persecution had happened. I followed their thinking and first gave them a simple answer; saying "There is nothing more absurd than this persecution and we too have been asking ourselves why, yet, who can explain clearly why Hitler felt he must get rid of Jews?"
I continued to elaborate on the topic of genocidal persecution and other related truth clarification, providing a positive message. I was careful to let people understand that this persecution targets one hundred million good people who practice Truthfulness-Compassion-Tolerance, emphasizing the extensiveness of the persecution, and also providing more positive messages: "Why did these people come to learn Falun Gong? It was spread by family members and friends through word of mouth and heart to heart from people that understood Falun Dafa was good; it was after our parents told us Falun Gong was good that several friends of mine and I myself started learning Falun Gong. After practicing Falun Gong, our health improved greatly and we became more decent and honest people, daring to follow the principle of "Truthfulness-Compassion-Tolerance" to become truly good people. Through this process, and according to these principles, hundreds of millions of Falun Gong practitioners have been able to step forward under enormous political pressure to speak the truth and reject the persecution.
I also revealed who started this absurd, evil and cruel genocidal persecution, who implemented the information blockade to keep the persecution going, who fabricated and distributed copious lies to slander and defame Falun Gong, who staged the so-called "Tiananmen self-immolation" and other tragedies in order to incite people's hatred toward Falun Gong. Then, very naturally, I pointed out to them that this persecution had twisted people's spirit and destroyed many people's conscience, because it not only affected hundreds of millions of Falun Gong practitioners and their family members, but also the entire Chinese population and people worldwide who had been contaminated by lies.
While making the comprehensive explanation to people as concise and vivid as possible, I made sure to take the opportunity to tell people that Jiang Zemin, the culprit of this persecution, had been sued in the U.S. and that the United States District Court of the Northern District of Illinois thought the former Chinese President Jiang Zemin was entitled to immunity. I asked them what they thought about that? I hoped that they would support our appeal and support our efforts from their hearts based on morality and justice. When I said that, people demonstrated their righteous thoughts and gave me their best and kindest answers and expressed their encouragement and gratitude to our Falun Gong practitioners. This gives proof to the power of clarifying the truth comprehensively.
Practitioner D: Each Cultivator's Mentality is Very Important
I think maintaining a cultivator's mentality is very important. Are we doing this for an expected outcome, or is it truly without pursuit? Is it only for exposing the evil, or are we are really thinking about saving sentient beings? Do we get all worked up to fight a battle, or do we consistently clarify the truth in a calm, mature and wise manner? These are all things that we need to cultivate.
Some practitioners still do not truly and fundamentally have a clear understanding of the significance and effect of the lawsuit against Jiang in the Fa-rectification period, nor do they know what to do as a cultivator. Some practitioners are only concerned with the specific projects they are working on, and have the misunderstanding that the case against Jiang is something that practitioners with knowledge of the law should be more concerned with. They usually are not concerned with the lawsuit against Jiang and only use the case as material to clarify the truth. They do not really care about or support the lawsuit from the bottom of their hearts. This will indeed weaken our strength as a whole.
If we ourselves still do not clearly understand the significance and effect of the lawsuit against Jiang in the Fa-rectification, it will be very difficult for us to explain to people the true facts of the lawsuit.
I think when anything occurs in the Fa-rectification, it presents us an opportunity to clarify the truth and save sentient beings. The same is true for the case against Jiang. Have we really used this opportunity well to clearly explain the truth that we are supposed to in a comprehensive, detailed, in-depth and solid manner? Have we explained it properly and effectively?
Practitioner E: The Best Way to Help the Lawsuit Against Jiang is to Solidly and Consistently Clarify the Truth
Jiang Zemin initiated this suppression against one hundred million Falun Gong practitioners, which not only violates international human rights laws, but also severely tramples the Chinese Constitution. Bringing Jiang Zemin to justice will not only help to end the catastrophe as soon as possible, but is also important in powerfully exposing and restricting the evil and saving the numerous sentient beings who have been deceived.
The case against Jiang is not an issue of a specific area, or an issue of the legal team, nor is it a simple issue of a legal proceeding. As a practitioner who is not in the law profession, I think the best way to help the case is to clarify the truth solidly and consistently. After people understand the facts, they will make the right choice.
Last June I went to Washington D.C. to look for and clarify the truth of Falun Gong to related congresspersons, hoping that they would support the lawsuit against Jiang. Before I left I contacted their offices and staff members, but I had to leave before they responded to my request. One morning I went to a congressperson's office for four or five times, yet I could not get an appointment with the specific staff member. After lunch I went to the congressperson's office again and waited. An elderly staff member walked out, so I stepped up and told her that I had come all the way from Kansas City just to meet that staff member and that I was a Falun Gong practitioner. Then I took out a copy of Witness to History magazine and briefly explained to her the truth about Falun Gong. After listening to me carefully, she apologized to me and told me that she was a supervisor of the congressperson's office. After asking me to wait for a while, she went into the office. In a short while, the young staff member who I had been waiting for finally came out. At the beginning she was very reluctant and told me that she could only give me five minutes because she was very busy, to which I agreed. I began by telling her that my husband and I had improved our health by practicing Falun Dafa, that Dafa had spread widely around the world and how Jiang started this bloody persecution against Falun Gong. I explained to her as I flipped through the "Witness" magazine while she listened quietly. I told her of the tragic death of Wang Lixuan and her 8-month old son as a result of the persecution. I told her, one word at a time, that Jiang had committed the crime of genocide, torture and crimes against humanity and we had brought Jiang's case to the court. She immediately said, "Good." She asked me how she could support us. Afterwards, this congressperson signed all the related resolutions that supported Falun Gong.
This experience made me understand what Teacher told us:
"It's like a master key, unlocking that old-force factor that seals the world's people off and prevents them from learning the Fa. Only your clarifying the truth can do this."
As Fa-rectification disciples, the degree of righteous enlightenment we have reached based on Teacher's Fa, and the strength of our righteous thoughts all directly relate to the effectiveness of our truth-clarification efforts and of our saving sentient beings.