Telling Remarks by CCP Official on the "Transformation" of Falun Gong Practitioners
(Clearwisdom.net) Early in the persecution of Falun Gong, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) implemented a policy that established "transformation rates," at all work units, and among local authorities, the judiciary, and many other institutions of society.
The purpose of the CCP's "transformation" policy was to brainwash practitioners, and force them to give up their belief in Falun Gong and its guiding principles, Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance. This in itself was a violation of the freedom of belief as guaranteed by the Chinese Constitution, but let's leave that aside for a moment.
Recently, around the eleventh anniversary of the persecution, an interview appeared on a Chinese website with Chen Changwen, a professor under orders of the CCP to develop better techniques to brainwash and "transform" Falun Gong practitioners. Chen, a department head in the Sichuan University Sociology Department, admitted his programs were not working very well, and he attributed the reason for this to Falun Gong practitioners' firm belief in the divine, which effectively blocked the brainwashing techniques and greatly reduced the "transformation" rate. There are a couple of telling insights into the CCP's propaganda and distorted logic that we can glean from this interview.
In the interview, Professor Chen creates a profile of Falun Gong practitioners as being outcasts and lower class members of society, who hope to gain a modicum of acceptance and dignity by joining a group greater than the individual.
However, Chen totally ignores the fact that, prior to the persecution which began in 1999, between seventy and one hundred million people were practicing Falun Gong--and that these practitioners came from all walks of life and every segment of society, including university professors and high ranking government officials. Furthermore, he appears to be totally unaware of how many practitioners outside of China hold masters and doctoral degrees. This blithe ignorance of the facts is consistent with the CCP's strategy to place Falun Gong outside mainstream Chinese society, and then turn Chinese society against Falun Gong with blatant lies.
As a way to further denigrate Falun Gong, Chen referenced the fact that many practitioners are currently homeless and destitute, implying that Falun Gong practitioners represent a social ill that must be dealt with. But he fails to mention that the reason those practitioners are destitute is because of the CCP's policy to "destroy their reputations, bankrupt them financially, and destroy them physically." This is another example of CCP logic that starts with a conclusion and selectively takes information out of context to justify that conclusion.
Chen Changwen then goes on to call the teachings of Falun Gong things that "prevent people from functioning normally in society." The central points of his argument revolve around the practitioners' belief in the divine and faith in things that are not tangible or readily proven. In a society where the state mandates atheism and enforces it with violence, perhaps such faith can be considered unusual. But by virtually any standard anywhere else in the world, faith and spirituality are virtues that lay at the foundation of society. Take the United States, for example. The right to practice one's faith, whether it be Christianity, Islam, or even atheism, is one of its founding principles.
When I first read Professor Chen's interview, I first dismissed it as another mindless attack. Upon delving into it, however, I thought that it was fairly representative of the false logic that the CCP uses to demonize Falun Gong and justify its baseless persecution, and wanted to share my thoughts on the matter.