A Political Science Teacher's Journey of Cultivation
(Minghui.org) I began my career as a teacher in 1989. The student demonstrations on Tiananmen Square that ended in a massacre on June 4 took place in the same year. I was vaguely aware of the deaths of many students, but I naively bought into Chinese Communist Party (CCP) propaganda, believing that the protest was an “anti-revolutionary riot.”
In 1998, I attended a teacher's conference at Normal University in northeast China. One course, International Relations, left quite an impression. The instructor openly revealed the truth about the June 4th Tiananmen Square Massacre! I sat there, mouth gaping in shock, as it slowly sunk in. I felt betrayed and ashamed for spreading the CCP's lies for so many years in my classroom.
The CCP declared a nationwide crackdown on Falun Gong in July 1999. State-controlled media outlets continuously broadcasted slander and defamation of the practice.
At that time, I was a new practitioner of only three months. Even so, my physical and mental transformation was immense. My life-long chronic stomach disease and sciatic rheumatism had vanished. I experienced the power of Dafa firsthand, and knew that the CCP's lies would not work on me this time.
Sincere Apology Earns Respect from My Students
After becoming a practitioner, I was determined to follow the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance, including in the classroom. My aggressive, cynical behavior changed.
I remember one class was infamous for being rowdy and unfocused. Once during my political science course, I lost my cool and started ranting at them, sending the room into a tense silence.
After reflecting on my behavior, I realized that I had failed my xinxing test. The next day, I sincerely apologized to my students. They were at first taken aback, and one after another they started to applaud after seeing that I sincerely reaching out to them.
Over time, their trust and respect for me grew. One day, when the topic of Falun Gong came up, one of the students said to me openly in class, “If you are for it, then so are we!”
Exposing the Staged Self-Immolation
Recent political science textbooks, including ones that I am instructed to use in my class, are full of CCP propaganda. A prime example is the staged self-immolation at Tiananmen Square.
The staged self-immolation is used extensively to demonize Falun Dafa practitioners. This hate campaign has led a lot of Chinese people to misunderstand Falun Dafa.
I remembered how the instructor at the conference had once opened my eyes to the June 4 Tiananmen Massacre. I knew that I had to do the same for my students regarding the staged self-immolation. I noticed that the almost perfectly executed self-immolation was too perfect, premeditated, and organized, and decided to use that as a starting point to talk to my students about it.
The culprits lighting the fire seemed to have a planned order, the police officers holding the fire extinguisher blankets were distributed evenly among the scene, and the security cameras were focused on the spectacle.
For an unexpected “incident,” the people on the scene were awfully prepared and organized. Everything about it smacked of a preplanned, well-orchestrated hoax.
I led the students in examining the events one at a time. After the students scrutinized the events and did their own analysis, their unanimous conclusion was that it was indeed a hoax orchestrated by the CCP.
Once the class recognized the folly of the staged self-immolation, I explained that Falun Gong is the Buddha Fa, teaching people to be compassionate and is practiced freely in over 100 countries around the world. Only in China is it persecuted and outlawed by the government. As a result, practitioners were thrown into forced labor camps, sentenced to jail, persecuted to death, and many even had their organs harvested and sold for huge profits.
This information upset my students. One stood up and said, “Tell us what we can do!” I explained that I was not necessarily advocating some specific action on their part, but that my intention was for them to know the truth. Many of the students later asked me for more informational materials about Falun Gong.
Students Learn about Forbearance
Once, a student came to me, complaining about a verbally abusive teacher. He was so resentful that he was planning to take physical revenge on him. I reminded my student to hold himself to the highest standards of Truth-Compassion-Forbearance. We should be tolerant of others, endure his shortcomings, and think about things from his perspective.
Later on, this student resolved his conflict with that teacher. He came back to me delighted, and asked me to help him withdraw from the Young Pioneers and the Youth League, two Chinese communist organizations for young people. Soon the story got around, and eventually the rest of his classmates also quit those organizations.
In 2011, I bumped into a former student. He had actually dropped out of school and went to Harbin City to work full time. He said, “One day, my boss' wife started cursing me nonstop. Though I kept quiet, she kept cursing me for over a week. Still I remained silent. Finally, she asked me, 'I've been screaming at you for a week! How are you not upset?!'
I explained to her, 'First of all, you are almost my mother's age, so I need to show you respect. Secondly, my schoolteacher asked me to always hold myself to the highest standards of Truth-Compassion-Forbearance.' After she heard that, her opinion of me changed and she even gave me a raise.”
He continued, “Teacher, after this experience, I have learned how to behave as a responsible member of society. I regret not finishing my education, which is why I have returned to school. I am currently preparing for my college entrance exam.”
I was touched to hear his story and truly felt proud of him. Dafa has helped me find my true self and shape the lives of so many young people.