(Clearwisdom.net) A lot is happening around the world in this age. It is happening especially in China, where two things have caught people's attention. One is the "rapidly developing economy," which made the whole world open its eyes wide, and everyone is trying to join in. The other is the persecution of Falun Gong that has gone on for the last eight years. These two things highlight society's materialistic and spiritual sides. The Chinese Communist Party's "material development" and "spiritual persecution" are close companions to Chinese people's, or even the entire world's, daily lives. It is a phenomenon of modern Chinese society.

People are probably quite impressed with economic developments. We overseas Chinese always hear, "Come back and take a look! You do not know how much the country has changed. Each year is a new look." Indeed, there are the skyscrapers, newly paved streets, highways, cars and airplanes, popularity of cell phones and the Internet, exotic evening entertainment, the exciting stock market... Moreover, there is large amount of foreign investment, strong export trading, production of world manufactures' brand-name products, huge foreign currency savings, high demand for energy and raw materials, a steady increase in the GDP; and even more TV, newspapers, and streets full of advertising billboards. Even menus in restaurants are using slogans, such as "Big Country," "Grand Dynasty," "taking flight," and other exciting words.

The cruel persecution of Falun Gong seems to persist because these material and sensory stimulations can easily lead people's minds to become excited and they are unaware of the CCP's suppression of the Chinese constitution-guaranteed freedom of belief. They appear to be disinterested in the persecution, or in a raise of morals that Falun Dafa's principles, Truthfulness-Benevolence-Forbearance, represent. In other words, the economic development has become a tool, excuse, or a cover for spiritual suppression.

The "Economic Development" Disaster

When people say, "Come back and take a look; you do not know how much it changed. Each year is a new look," they often neglect to mention moral decline. "Each year is a new look" actually can symbolize a sinking of moral values.

The whole society seems to be in a terrifying moral decline. The decrease of moral integrity and increase of sexual promiscuity are evidence of Chinese social and moral corruption. People actually know the importance of good morals in any society. People nowadays are even worried about poison when buying their groceries. Nowadays, it is so difficult to find an innocent young girl. The moral collapse has deeply impacted daily life. While many still blindly believe "we should boost our economy first," "when the economy is good, society's morality will be naturally be good;" that is why people are tolerant of the CCP persecuting an upright faith, and condone it becoming drunk on "economic development." They hope one day they'll wake up, and everyone will be honest and kind, obey the law, and respect each other.

In fact, blaming low ethics and integrity on poverty is an insult to poor people and also twisting cause and effect. Many poor people have lived highly virtuous lives. By contrast, so many wealthy people are living depraved lives.

People have seen that the CCP's "economic development without virtue" is a disaster for the Chinese nation and ultimately the whole world. The whole Chinese nation is looking only at money now. People will do whatever they want to make money. Cheating, poisoning rice, and selling fake medicine have become common. Speaking from a broader point of view, some Chinese researchers think the process of economic development is like a process of the CCP profiteers turning China into the western world's "cash cow," while the CCP reduced responsibility for human rights to a minimum. They let the business people of the whole world milk the cash cow, but ignore the life or death of the cow. How long can this kind of development last? There is no future for later generations. A saying pointed out the crisis of the CCP's economic development, "Take for your own fortune, leave the GDP to the CCP."

The Chief Economy Research Center official of the State Council Resource Committee wrote a report. The report, according to Japanese Customs statistics, stated that China exported 44.86 million cases of disposable chopsticks, each case containing five thousand pairs. The total would be 22.43 billion pairs. According to Chinese forestry experts' calculations, the wood used for these chopsticks must have destroyed 20% of the existing forests in China. Another revelation: Japan stopped using coal long ago. But shockingly, due to China's low coal prices, Japan imports 20 million tons of coal each year from China to form a coal storage reserve. Cheap Chinese products have flooded overseas countries at the cost of destroying Chinese resources, which has even shocked overseas people who still have a conscience. They issued a call to change consumption of disposable products and are sincerely trying to persuade China to conserve resources. Officials from the State Resource Ministry said the total area of all of the official "Development Zones" has surpassed the total land used for all Chinese cities and towns in the nation's five thousand-year history.

Former Anhui Province Vice Governor Wang Huaizhong (male) has a notorious saying: "Whoever bans prostitution is equal to destroying investments," which reflects the moral cost of the CCP's economic development.

The CCP's "economic development" is the root of a huge discrepancy between the rich and the poor, which has created the new "three mountains" on a person's mind : tuition, medical costs, and housing. The "Hope Project" (an educational support effort) and the "Social Security Fund" have become financial resources for corrupt officials. When the CCP itself realized that high-speed economic development was a huge disaster without a future, it was too late, and it could not slow the speed, even if it tried. It is just like a vehicle is rolling downhill and the brake system is failing. The truth is very simple. People without virtue will not even stop their cars for other people's children. Money is everything to them. They do not care about other people's life or death as long as they can make money. Most rich people have moved their families overseas by now.

Virtue Brings Prosperity

People are discussing whether China's problems are political or social. To put it plainly, it is neither. The bottom line is lack of integrity. A system of law is based on a foundation of honesty, integrity, and moral values. The Western legal systems are based on Christianity; there is God behind the law. People's integrity is judged by their trustworthiness.

Whoever visits India would be impressed by an Indian's calm mind, perfect financial credit system, and good moral nature, which goes hand in hand with their religious faith.

The CCP is using atheism and dialectical materialism as its theoretical foundation. It promotes shameless garbage from a book in Chinese history, Thick and Dark Theory (1). Thick and Dark Theory coupled with atheism and a violent philosophy is harming the entire Chinese nation, which appears to have abandoned laws and heaven. Such standards go against modern laws and a credible society. Some say if all the skyscrapers collapse in the United States, the country would still stand there because its system and faith are still there; its spirit is still there. If the skyscrapers collapsed in China, China will collapse, because it is supported by sham materials and lacks a real system, let alone faith and spirit. Although this analogy may not be accurate, it truthfully reflects issues in current society.

Economic development is not tantamount to a decrease in moral standards, but they go hand-in-hand. Once Falun Dafa practitioners learn the Fa and cultivate their hearts, they try to be good family members at home and good employees at work. They try to be unselfish, put others before themselves, avoid greed or bribes, and treat marriage and society's issues seriously. These are qualities necessary for any economic development. The CCP has promoted "mental civilization," but hardly any one follows the call to achieve "mental civilization" from the bottom of their hearts. Virtue cannot be increased through political studies. After Falun Dafa practitioners learned from the Fa where a human comes from and the purpose of being human, they want to be good people from the bottom of their hearts, and they have not been forced by outside pressure. This cannot compare to the CCP's wave after wave of movements. The CCP's moral movements take serving the Party as the only goal, which cannot effectively turn people's hearts toward goodness. All those corrupt officials let out shouts of "pure and just" before being punished by the CCP itself.

It is partially due to fear of the CCP's dictatorship that people choose to believe the CCP's saying, "first raise the economy," which manifests in "economic development contrary to morals." People have seen the CCP's economic undertakings and then tolerated the CCP suppressing moral faith. Actually, all of us have seen that the victim of such moral decline has not merely been the individual but a whole nation.

The Gods are benevolent; only the people in the maze cannot sense it. When China was stepping onto "the road of reform and open economic development [under Deng]", Falun Dafa began spreading in China. It is heaven's mercy and greatest gift. The virtues cultivated from practicing Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance bring forth the rebirth of China's five thousand years of ancient civilization. The sad part is the CCP, this evil specter from the West, cannot tolerate heavenly mercy; the malicious people were genocidal towards Falun Dafa practitioners, and thus they doomed the future of China.

Major Principles Manifest through Minor Things

My mother came from China to visit us. She is an absolute atheist, and she feels it is ridiculous to believe in gods. Once she asked me exactly what good did Falun Dafa bring for humankind. I was just buying a new vehicle and had a small story to tell. Although she did not comment, but I knew she was convinced.

Nowadays, buying a new vehicle does not require one to visit different several dealers because one can compare on the Internet. I wanted to buy a Honda Odyssey Minivan with leather seats and a DVD player. One dealer had the lowest price, and I called several dealers, who all said that price was impossibly low. I went to that dealer with the computer printout next day. The dealer went to see his manager with my printout. The manager arrived after a while and said this price was listed wrong; it only included the leather seats, but not the DVD player. However, according to law since it was their error, they had to sell me the vehicle with the posted price. I was happy, because that means I got a free built-in DVD player (the screen was mounted to the roof). How wonderful to gain such a benefit! After the complicated process, the brand-new vehicle was presented to me. I quickly inserted a disc in the machine, wishing to enjoy it. Nothing happened. I tried some maneuvers, yet it still did not work. Several salesmen helped me, and still, nothing happened. They said this had never occurred before. It was kind of late, so they gave up and allowed me drive the new car home and make an appointment to fix it later.

My children were eager to watch a movie in the new car, but their wish was not granted. The whole family was a bit unhappy. I am a cultivator after all, so I knew nothing was accidental. This DVD player was "free" and broken to begin with. This incident was telling me something. I was uneasy after looking inward. The point was not how much money is involved, but my exuberance after I benefited: truly not a cultivator's mindset. This kind of test is common to new Falun Dafa practitioners. When I realized this, I had no grievances with the dealer. The dealer told me later on they would have to order a part, which takes several days. We could not see even the shadow of our newly bought car. My family was not happy about it, but I was very calm. I recall a story Master told in Zhuan Falun, where a father let his son win a luxury bike through a raffle ticket; he finally donated the money to his employer. I was seriously thinking to donate the amount of the DVD player.

This little thing is usually not worth mentioning, but since my mother asked "exactly what good did Falun Dafa bring to human kind," I used this car-buying story as an illustration. She thought I was dumb because I refused to accept a benefit that was "rightfully mine." Then I told her that my conscience was uneasy because my gain was a result of their loss. Why was the DVD player broken? Cultivators should take such coincidences as opportunity to cultivate our hearts, which is similar to a fall on the road. We would look inward for anything we did not do well. Falun Dafa taught us

"The whole process of cultivation is a process of constantly getting rid of human attachments." (Zhuan Falun, the First Talk, Truly Guiding People Up to High Levels).

My greedy mindset and happiness about personal advantage was exposed while I was buying a car; those are thoughts I should get rid of through cultivation. I had a lesson to use as reference for future situations. I told my mother, "Do you think I was stupid because you think about it as a member of our family who lost a benefit? If another person did so, would you still unhappy about it? If the whole world's people thought accordingly, don't you think this would be bad for humankind? In contrast, would you agree that if everyone looked inward [according to Dafa] the world would be a better place? You asked 'exactly good did Falun Dafa bring to humankind.' Isn't this a big benefit for humankind?"

I know I grew up with the CCP's educational slogans and received much of their "moral education." However, they never fundamentally touched my heart. I am over 40 years old, and in my household, three generations live together; my life experiences made my idealistic dreams fade long ago. Today I feel guilty because I gained a little bit of profit over others' loss. I am surprised that I have learned to think this way. Falun Dafa shows me in my daily life that I am a cultivator who practices according to Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance, and I should become unselfish and put others before myself.

Master Li taught us in the First Talk of Zhuan Falun,

"However high your character is, that's how high your gong is."

Cultivation is upgrading our virtue through mistakes and lessons.

Some may say they can do that without believing in gods or other religions. Maybe that is true. But the CCP had failed to teach me and the other religions I tried also failed to teach me. Falun Dafa taught me how to truly raise my level of virtue. Of course, I want to thank Falun Dafa for saving my lost soul as well. I can see the huge awareness that Falun Dafa has demonstrated to China and the human race.

Safeguard the Fa with Virtue While Overcoming Hardships

There are many observations, but I want to specify two subjects here: "virtue" and "safeguarding virtue." "Virtue" is doing better about oneself, while "safeguarding virtue" is whether one can stand up to defend virtue when it is being attacked by the evil. To Falun Dafa practitioners, these can be defined as "obtaining the Fa," and "safeguarding the Fa."

Falun Dafa practitioners resisting the persecution for eight years is in fact manifesting how to safeguard virtue. Modern people have too many excuses for their non-action towards evil. Especially under the influence of the CCP culture, there are so many conflicting thoughts. Let us ignore those excuses and just use the basic good or bad as the standards to see the meaning of Falun Dafa practitioners standing up against the persecution.

When people became accustomed to being threatened and bowing in front of the CCP's dictatorship, Falun Dafa practitioners were not scared to fall and stood up bravely, walked a peaceful path, and rationally and nonviolently resisted the persecution.

When people think practitioners should hide, deceive the authorities, or practice secretly at home, many Falun Dafa practitioners choose not to escape against their conscience.

When the whole world was tempted by the financial benefit and ignored the CCP's persecution of Falun Dafa practitioners for the sake of trading with them, Falun Dafa practitioners never gave up clarifying the truth with limited resources, exposing the evil, and resisting the persecution. They created a realm for the world to learn about Falun Gong and spread the truth about the persecution.

When many western media were unwilling to report about the Falun Gong issue under pressure from or being bribed by the CCP, Falun Dafa practitioners established their own media and developed websites, newspapers, a radio station, and a TV station to fully reveal the cruel persecution of Falun Gong to the world.

When the CCP blocked the Internet and information channels, preventing Mainland Chinese to come in contact with the truth, Falun Dafa practitioners developed software to take down the CCP's Internet blockage. They also used telephones, mail, word-of-mouth, etc. to tell people the facts. They risked their lives by tapping into the cable TV network to reveal the CCP's propaganda fabrications, which greatly shook the evil.

When Jiang and the CCP regime mistreated practitioners by brainwashing, detaining, and torturing them, forced them "into early retirement," took away their homes, counted murder as suicide, and harvested their organs while they are still alive, countless practitioners did not cowardly retreat.

When the CCP truly blocked people from learning the truth, Falun Dafa practitioners published the "Nine Commentaries on th Communist Party", which systematically exposed the evil nature of the CCP. It also sparked the great tide of people withdrawing from the CCP.

Even when Chinese people cannot understand why Falun Dafa practitioners are opposing the persecution because they are inhibited by the CCP's brainwashing about being "politically involved," or being labeled an "anti-China force," practitioners know clearly what they are doing. Anti-CCP is not anti-China, and opposing persecution is not being political. They did not give up their principles or waver from external changes, and they continue clarify the truth with compassion.

The Buddha Fa is boundless. In order to save more sentient beings, Falun Dafa practitioners started spreading the truth through the arts. They held the "Truthfulness, Benevolence, Forbearance" Art Exhibit, the "NTDTV New Year Spectacular," "Divine Performing Arts" world-wide tour, etc.

People all say "Heavenly law states that evil can never surpass the righteous." Why is it a heavenly law? Because there are righteous people who dare to put down life or death to follow the heavenly way. When the CCP collapses and they recall history, people will understand and be grateful for Falun Dafa practitioners' huge sacrifice to safeguard the righteous Fa and righteous faith. This sacrifice is the people of the future's reference on how to face the evil.

Only Standard and Only Chance

It looks like Falun Dafa practitioners are safeguarding their own human rights, but they are saving sentient beings. Several huge civilizations have been destroyed in history, and most of the time, it happened when their economy and technology were highly developed but their morals were corrupted, especially concerning sexual corruption. Why has the Chinese culture survived to this day? It is because it was how the Gods arranged it. When people no longer believe in gods or even slander the gods, how can this civilization remain? The famous prophecy in The Plum Blossom Poem,written in the Song Dynasty (960-1279), said, "The best autumn scenery is in Chang'an" (Essentials for Further Advancement, Deciphering the Last Three Stanzas of the Plum Blossom Poem). It is indicating that today's China, though it prospers on the surface, cannot stay in the autumn for much longer. People saw prosperity in today's world compared with yesterday's, but they fail to see tomorrow's civilization destroyed by today's moral corruption. Can people enlighten to the only salvation from this destruction? Many people who have learned the truth have reached a clear conclusion: Falun Dafa and Truthfulness, Benevolence, and Forbearance are the only things that can lead human beings towards the future!

The divine standard to judge a nation's survival or destruction is virtue. The decline of virtue can be as quick as a thousand miles per day, but rebuilding virtue is very difficult. It is impossible to reach the rebirth of virtue through economic development and technology. Only through the Gods' guidance can people find their way to inner peace. The spread of Falun Dafa is the biggest opportunity for Chinese people to walk towards the future.

Centuries breeze past the eyes like mist and clouds. Mud and sand are sieved away; gold shines forth. In the near future, all people will unanimously clearly see, and treat May 13, the day Falun Dafa began spreading in the human world, as an important historical holiday to express their gratitude to the Lord of Buddhas' merciful salvation and celebrate mankind's new, fortunate beginning. From 1992 to 2007, it has been a splendid fifteen years of history, because Falun Dafa was being spread in the human world and Falun Dafa went through obstacles in the human world that moved the whole cosmos to tears!

May 13, 2007

Note: (1) Thick and Dark Theory was written in 1917 by Li Zongwu (1879-1943). He promoted having skin as thick as the city wall (meaning being shameless), and ones heart should be as dark as coal. He thinks heroes should force victims to show gratitude by kneeling on the floor. His theory was not accepted by most Chinese, but recently the CCP Youth League recommended young people to read this sinful, selfish book.