Guards and Inmates in China's Detention Facilities Come to Support Falun Gong Practitioners Detained for Their Faith (Part 1)
(Minghui.org) The Chinese Communist Party's persecution of Falun Dafa, also known as Falun Gong, has been based on propaganda and deception since it began in 1999. To debunk the lies perpetuated against their faith, many Falun Dafa practitioners, including those in detention, have used every opportunity possible to raise awareness of this persecution, which has no legal basis.
I have been arrested on multiple occasions for refusing to renounce Falun Dafa, a mind-body practice based on the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance. No matter where I was detained, be it a detention center or labor camp, I talked to the guards and inmates about my beliefs. Many of them have come to see through the CCP's slanderous propaganda against Falun Dafa, and even appreciate the goodness of Dafa and the kindness of Dafa practitioners.
This three-part series presents a few such examples.
Understanding The Facts
I was arrested and taken to a local detention center for the second time in September 1999. A fellow practitioner warned me that the warden of our block was very brutal to the practitioners. This warden could not wait to interrogate me on the second day he came to work after he learned that I was a department director.
The warden chastised me, “Why didn't you enjoy your good life? You had to do this instead? Did you have nothing better to do?”
He added, “In this block, you must obey the rules. You cannot practice the [Falun Gong] exercises or read the [Falun Gong] books. A few practitioners before you were punished and no longer dare to practice. You'd better be obedient and not cause any trouble.”
“Do you actually know about Falun Dafa?” I asked.
He said, “Who doesn't? It's been on TV every day for the past two months. We have documents passed down from the higher-ups. I don't get why you guys believe in these superstitious things.”
Since it seemed that he had been deceived by the CCP's lies, I told him my story in detail – from the reason I took up Falun Dafa to the benefits I received from the practice.
I was born into a big family – my parents were both farmers. My father worked in the village's production team. In addition to his job, he kept a small plot where he grew crops for our personal use. My mother raised pigs to bring in some extra income. But it was hard to make ends meet. Our financial situation was very poor. We were more than 1,000 yuan in debt, an astronomical figure for a family like ours
My father went to the production team's meeting one evening and didn't come home when he usually did. My mother was very anxious. I was worried as well, as I am the oldest child. I laid in bed but could not fall asleep. When my father finally came home, I overheard what he said to my mother.
“Our days will be even harder. Because we have our own land and raise pigs, I was forced to acknowledge that we are capitalists. How are we going to live without this extra income?”
With my father's words echoing in my heart, I studied very hard at school and worked hard after graduation, hoping to earn more money for our family. At work, I was elected as the deputy Party secretary and a middle-level leader. I was not even 40 when I became deputy department director. I was identified by my supervisor as a young and promising reserve cadre.
Who could imagine how much a rural child without background and money had to give up in order to climb to this position? I lived frugally in order to save more money for my family. This financial stress and years of navigating through workplace politics slowly took a toll on my health. I was eventually diagnosed with an incurable blood disease by the hospital, with various complications. While everyone admired my external achievements, my body was being eaten away by illness, and I relied on pills to stay alive every day.
My parents cried loudly when they heard the grim news. My mother wrote a will, saying that she would go with me if I died.
I had to get a blood transfusion once every few days when things were bad. I tried qigong and took Chinese medicines, but they did not help much. My condition was unsteady at best.
After practicing Falun Dafa for a mere ten days however, all my diseases completely disappeared. I felt light and free of illness; I felt the joy of having a new life. I decided that I would cultivate Dafa to the end, no matter what difficulties I encountered.
I introduced Falun Dafa to every member of my family. As a result, my mother's various conditions, including rheumatism, pulmonary disease, heart disease, and stubborn headache, disappeared completely. My younger sister's cirrhosis was gone and my father's arteriosclerosis vanished.
After seeing the health benefits my family received, many of my friends and relatives also became practitioners. They have also been blessed by Dafa.
After I finished telling my story, I said to that guard, “I would have died already if it were not for Dafa. Am I one of those irrational people that they talk about on TV?”
There seemed to be tears in his eyes. He looked out the window and didn't speak for a while.
“I also read Zhuan Falun. Was it really written by him? How did he know all those things about astronomy and geography even though he never went to college?” he asked.
Zhuan Falun was, of course, the main book of Falun Dafa's teachings, and the “him” here referred to Master Li Hongzhi, the practice's founder.
I said to the warden, “I understand what you're thinking. In a Fa teaching conference I attended in Dalian, Master Li taught the Fa for three hours straight without any script. He was a well known qigong master in Beijing, and treated many patients at two Health Expos, no matter what diseases they had.”
He smiled, “No wonder you are a departmental cadre. All of this is very logical.”
“It is nothing about me. I'm only telling the truth.” I said.
Since that conversation, he always talked to me in his office or outside of the jail house whenever he was on duty. On one occasion, he cooked some eggs and a bowl of porridge for me when he found out that I was having diarrhea. He also brought me a thermos bottle of warm water.
That was the first time he treated his prisoners so nicely.
One day, I invited him to have dinner with me after I was released from the detention center. He thanked me for letting him know the truth about Falun Dafa.
He said, “Life is like a game of chess. You will lose if you fail to make the right decisions. Similarly, you can't recover in your life if you don't make the correct judgment calls. I would still believe the TV's propaganda if you hadn’t told me the facts. How could a government lie this much to its own people?”
Becoming a Friend of Practitioners
As his understanding of the truth about Falun Dafa deepened, his attitude toward Dafa became more positive. He has become a friend to practitioners.
Every time a practitioner was taken to the detention center, this warden always told the head of the jail cells to take good care of his friend. He sometimes even bought daily necessities for practitioners with his own money.
One fellow practitioner released from that detention center told me a story about this warden.
He said, “On the second day I was in the detention center, I overheard this warden asking the head of the jail cells to look after me even though he did not know me. When that guard made fun of him for having ‘a lot of friends,’ that warden said, ‘Yes. All Falun Dafa practitioners are my friends.’”
Another practitioner who was released said, “Every practitioner in the detention center knew that this warden cared for them. They always came to him for help.”
This warden would always ask around for me every time I asked about the detained practitioners at the detention center – whether a certain person had been taken in, or how a certain person might be doing.
When I was detained in the detention center, I once asked him if helping me out might cause troubles for him.
He said, “I thought about that. But you practitioners are different from the other inmates. You're good people who don't hurt anyone. I have been here for years and my supervisors understand me. As a matter of fact, it has been so long that even the superiors have their own understanding of Falun Dafa. The persecution is only a movement and it will be over under a new government. I want to stand with you people. That is where I'm most happy and comfortable.”
He also helped one fellow practitioner deliver a few things, including some Falun Dafa lectures, into the detention center. To show his appreciation, this fellow practitioner invited him to dinner. To his surprise, this warden quietly paid the bill in advance.
Seeing this fellow practitioner embarrassed, he said, “I understand your feelings. But you are currently still being persecuted by the CCP. Many practitioners like you have lost their regular income. You can pay me back when the persecution ends.”
Because of the change in his attitude toward Falun Dafa, this warden was blessed by Dafa. He used to have high blood pressure and an unknown disease. All of his symptoms have disappeared and he is now very healthy. He was also promoted to a new position.
(To be continued)