(Minghui.org) The days surrounding July 20, 1999, the date the Chinese regime's persecution of Falun Gong began, are imprinted in the minds of many Falun Gong practitioners. They remember everything as if it happened yesterday, even though 17 years have passed.
The Minghui website, the most important means of communication between practitioners inside and outside of China, was established on June 25, 1999. It has grown and flourished, despite great efforts by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) to destroy it.
Among the one hundred million practitioners of that time, many had practiced only two or three years, and many were newcomers who had just started in 1999.
Many articles on the Minghui website were written without a deep understanding of Falun Gong. However, most articles are a record of what happened at the beginning of the persecution. They were beneficial to readers then and are still of value today.
It was my hope that the Minghui website would re-publish those articles so that practitioners could read how practitioners remained steadfast in this cultivation practice, and how they overcame tribulations that the world had never seen before.
Minghui was launched on June 25, 1999, with a Falun Gong Association notice announcing the site and its mission. Readers were invited to submit articles.
Although the persecution and suppression of Falun Gong were severe at the time, Minghui was able to report on the communist regime's atrocities against Falun Gong, as well as practitioners' improvements in health and character. There were also practitioners' commentaries on current issues, letters telling government officials and the public about the persecution, and a report on experience sharing conferences overseas.
The articles published on the first day presented the direction for future Minghui publications, which it has followed.
On June 26, 1999, the second day, an experience sharing conference was held in Chicago. Master Li Hongzhi (the founder of Falun Gong) gave a lecture at the conference in person.
Master Li said:
“Under trying circumstances of any type, you must all keep steady in thought. Just by staying unaffected you will be able to handle all situations.” (Teaching the Fa at the Conference in the Midwest-U.S.)
“How many people in history have cultivated to success? Very few. You may know of some of them from the stories about cultivators and legends that have been passed down in history. There are so many people in the world, so why can’t the majority of them cultivate, and why haven’t more people cultivated to success? Because people can’t let go of humanness.” (Teaching the Fa at the Conference in the Midwest-U.S.)
“Of course, today I have revealed the true Fa of this cosmos to all of you, and the omnipotent side of the Fa has been displayed; and, now there are indeed a lot of people who can truly cultivate and truly advance in cultivation. So that is why there are so many Dafa disciples, so many people being diligent, and so many who will reach Consummation in the future.” (Teaching the Fa at the Conference in the Midwest-U.S.)
The launch of Minghui attracted attention from people of diverse backgrounds, affiliations, and leanings.
For practitioners in China and overseas, Minghui became an invaluable communications platform. It has allowed practitioners to encourage one another during this unprecedented persecution. Master Li gave his disciples this website: It allows practitioners to receive trustworthy information, gives them direction for their cultivation, and helps them to walk their paths righteously.
Minghui is also a medium that lets the world know the true story of the persecution and gives them insight into the Falun Gong cultivation practice. People from all walks of life, including officials in the Chinese government, have a way to learn the facts about Falun Gong.
June 30, 1999:The Minghui Editorial Board published a Notice from the Falun Dafa Association. The Notice told practitioners in China to cultivate solidly, safeguard the Fa, and report the situation to all levels of the Chinese government.
July 15 , 1999: Minghui published an editorial titled “Doing Good Deeds Is Rewarded and Being Evil Is Met With Evil Returns; Truth Remains Forever.”
This publication exposed the slander and how Jiang Zemin's regime tried to force its will on Falun Gong. It warned the persecutors, “Doing good deeds is rewarded, and being evil is met with evil returns.”
The editorial ended by saying, “A cultivator's heart of selflessness and forbearance in the face of any tribulation in his pursuit of the truth he believes in will break through and transcend all barriers in the human world. This will write a brilliant new chapter in the dissemination of Dafa in the human world, of mankind's history, and of the future of the universe.”
July 19, 1999: On the eve before the onset of the persecution, Minghui published another editorial, “Wake-Up Call.”
The editorial advised the regime not to place itself above the law. This article displayed the compassion and dignity of cultivators.
A government-controlled newspaper published a headline on July 19 and reported that it had snowed in Beijing on July 18, suggesting that a major injustice on Earth was happening.
Immediately after the headline, the paper publicized a large-scale arrest of Falun Gong practitioners in China. Jiang Zemin's regime had launched its brutal campaign against Falun Gong.
July 21, 1999: The Minghui website continued to report on developments in the persecution in its editorial, “Environment.”
The Chinese version of the site stated, “Every practitioner must come forward and safeguard the Fa immediately. All practitioners in China and overseas, including those in the countryside, must take actions to safeguard the Fa.”
“Let's cultivate diligently,” stated the Chinese language editorial. “Keep solid steps despite the stormy weather. Only by being thoroughly tempered can a practitioner reach consummation.”
July 22, 1999: Minghui issued a call for papers with the theme: “Falun Dafa Benefits Society, Countries, and Mankind.”
At the same time, the Chinese version of this editorial reported that tens of thousands of practitioners throughout China went to Beijing to appeal for justice on behalf of Falun Gong.
The Chinese-language Minghui site published articles “Restore the Innocence of Falun Gong” and “Do Not Strive to Be Condemned by History.” These articles asked for an end to the persecution and gave warnings about reaping and sowing.
July 23, 1999:Minghui published an article titled “10,000 Practitioners in Hebei Arrested – No Food or Water for Two Days.”
July 24, 1999: Minghui published a Notice from the Falun Dafa Association titled “About Master's New Articles.” It announced that Master's new articles would be published by the Minghui website.
July 29,1999: Minghui published the article “Heaven, Earth and People Witness This Day.” It condemned the arrest warrant issued by the Jiang Zemin regime against Falun Gong, including its founder and practitioners. The article said, “History will remember this dark day. Heaven, Earth and people will be the witnesses.”
July 30, 1999:Minghui advised its readers that the “Founder of Falun Gong had his Letter Delivered to the Chinese Embassy in the USA.”
Master Li Hongzhi urged the Chinese government to stop the persecution of Falun Gong immediately; this would benefit its people, safeguard the country, and avoid misfortune for countless people. He suggested peaceful dialogue to solve the issue between Falun Gong and the Chinese government.
July 31, 1999: Minghui's headline said, the “Founder of Falun Gong Expresses His Regret on the Chinese Government's Issue of Arrest Warrant.”
“I express my deepest regret,” said Master Li, “that the Chinese government lists me as wanted through the International Criminal Police Organization. Their accusations are fabricated and baseless.”
August 8, 1999: Minghui reported that the Mayor of Jersey City, New Jersey, proclaimed August 8, 1999 Mr. Li Hongzhi Day.
August 9, 1999: Minghui reported that Washington, D.C., the U.S. capital, proclaimed a Falun Gong Week.
On August 27,1999: Minghui published an editorial, “Peaceful Appeals Are Both Reasonable and Legal; Falsely Charging Practitioners Is an Insult to Heaven and Humankind.”
The article again refuted the Chinese regime's propaganda against Falun Gong and warned the Chinese Communist Party of the consequences of its perverse acts.
Veteran practitioners know that the persecution started much earlier than July 1999. The period around 1999 was the peak of the persecution and also a time for practitioners to truly cultivate.
Minghui publishes notices, editorials, and feature articles that guide practitioners and tells the world the facts about Falun Gong.
Of utmost importance, Minghui also publishes Master Li's new articles and lectures. It has accompanied practitioners on their journeys.
Practitioners' experience-sharing articles show the world what Falun Gong is, refute the lies by the state-controlled media in China, and reinforce practitioners' confidence.