Hong Kong: Saving People and Clarifying the Truth Despite the Danger
(Minghui.org) Greetings Master! Greetings fellow practitioners!
It's my pleasure to share with you my cultivation experience of working on the front line in the media in Hong Kong. I have been working full time in our media for 17 years, since NTD TV established its office in Hong Kong in 2002. The Epoch Times became a daily paper in Hong Kong in 2005. Due to limited manpower, I also help with reporting for The Epoch Times.
A new director was appointed to The Epoch Times HK in June 2013. Our office entered into a new phase and became more professional. It runs just like any other company instead of a family business. We set up a company structure and rules. The Epoch Times HK was free of charge initially. On April 1 this year the circular started to sell for $10 HK dollars for each copy.
Hong Kong became the world's focus when citizens started protesting the extradition bill and the Chinese Communist Party's (CCP) steady encroachment upon Hong Kong's historic freedoms in June this year. “Heaven Eliminates the CCP” banners and slogans are seen in every corner of Hong Kong. We realize that it is a result of cosmic changes and also a good opportunity for us to save sentient beings. The Epoch Times HK set up community media channels on major social media. We established a video department and a real-time news department. Our social media channel covers live broadcasts, interviews, focus interviews and public opinion in Chinese, English, Japanese and Vietnamese. We report Hong Kong news with dozens of short videos every day. Subscriptions to our channels have increased significantly in recent months. Our click views sometimes reach over 4 million.
HK Epoch Times has become very popular. The protesters respect our reporters. When people recognize our reporters they shake their hands. They thank The Epoch Times and Falun Gong practitioners with tears in their eyes for accompanying them into dangerous situations. Many people have left us messages of apology for misunderstanding us before. Some netizens now understand that our reports on the Chinese regime's organ harvesting of prisoners of conscience are true.
Hong Kong's mainstream media produces fake news and follows the CCP's guidelines to slander protesters. The Epoch Times has become an important platform for Hong Kong citizens to know what’s really happening. We covered the Chinese University of Hong Kong conflict, a Hong Kong version of the June 4th incident when the Hong Kong police shot more than 2,000 rounds of tear gas and over 60 students were injured. The next day, only The Epoch Times and a Hong Kong pro-democracy newspaper published reports on this incident while all other newspapers published a pro-CCP advertisement that slandered the protesters. The photo on our headline news was carried by a famous Hong Kong singer on her social media account. It was also reproduced by a U.S. mainstream media.
The Epoch Times is a unique Fa tool which allows us to clarify the truth while at the same time cultivating ourselves. We understand the huge responsibilities that Dafa practitioners have. I know it's a good opportunity for me to clarify the truth through the media, eliminate my attachments, purify myself, and complete the mission of saving sentient beings. Thank you Master for your compassionate protection.
I’d like to share with you some of my experiences.
Validating the Fa in the Evil Core, Letting Go of Selfishness and Complaints
The CCP deployed many spies throughout Hong Kong before it took over in 1997. It began openly interfering in Hong Kong's politics. Incidents kept happening in Hong Kong. I'd like to give you some examples of incidents that were not reported. Our reporters encountered a lot of resistance even when we reported on economic and entertainment news. For example, if an entertainment star planned to extend their business in China, they refused to be interviewed by us. Several security guards would monitor our reporters and keep us from approaching the star. Some major property developers also refused our interviews.
In such an environment, we faced big challenges every day. My realization was that I should face every incident with a practitioner’s mindset. I should remind myself all the time that I am a Dafa practitioner and should behave in a dignified way. I should clarify the truth during the process. I must have a firm belief in Master and remember that gradually all doors closed to us will open.
On one occasion the former Chief Executive of Hong Kong attended an activity held by the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. My application for an interview with him was denied. Three security guards sent by the Stock Exchange held me outside the hotel so that I could not see him. I videotaped the situation and made a complaint to the Hong Kong Journalists Association and the Stock Exchange.
After this incident, I constantly contacted the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. Gradually they accepted us and no longer refused our interviews. I came to know many people in leadership positions. This greatly helped me when I did the finance news and also helped us improve our financial situation.
When I received too many refusals, I complained and felt frustrated, which would affect the whole group. The video camera reporter was refused interviews many times. He often asked me to clarify the truth to people on his behalf. The way he talked to me was challenging, and I failed many xinxing tests. I thought that since these incidents happened to him, he should clarify the truth. I was reluctant to follow up. Our conflict affected the whole group.
“In these situations your conduct should always show Dafa disciples' tolerance, kindness, and niceness. The next person's things are your things,1 and your things are his things.” (Teaching the Fa at the Washington, D.C. Fa Conference, Collected Fa Teachings, Vol. II)
One day I forgot to follow up with someone as I was supposed to. In the subway, Master’s Fa came to my mind. I immediately phoned the person. He was polite and agreed to add us to their press list. I realized that I had been selfish. Even when I clarified the truth, I placed myself first. I didn’t consider our situation as a group effort. After that, I looked after other team members and became more considerate of the pressure they were under.
Remembering to Maintain a Practitioner’s Mindset
Working for the media is intense. My mind was preoccupied with details of the work and I sometimes forgot that I was a practitioner. As a live reporter, I need to be in front of the camera. When I saw myself in many news pieces, I developed the attachment of fame. I was very concerned with the click ratio and liked to hear praise. I had clashes with other teams when reporting on important news. Each team wanted to grab the important news first. I didn’t behave like a practitioner.
The coordinator asked me to cover news on the economy, entertainment and everyday life. Other teams would cover the important news and politics. I agreed reluctantly. I had been covering the important news and political news for a long time. Inwardly, I was upset. The news I was asked to cover was unimportant and trivial. I needed to study the boring stock market and economy, and familiarize myself with over a thousand listed companies and had to contact various Chinese companies. I felt upset. I had tears in my eyes sometimes for no reason. This went on for a few months.
“But true improvements come from letting go, not from gaining.” (“Teaching the Fa at the 2002 Fa Conference in Philadelphia, U.S.A.” , Collected Fa Teachings, Vol. II )
Then I realized that the manpower of our office was very limited and it was important that we covered every aspect of society. When I calmed down, I realized that Master had given me the best things because I could take this opportunity to let go of my attachment to myself and to fame and self-interest. I should think about the long-term impact of our media. Gradually, my mind became solid and my thoughts were balanced again. I was willing to look for more news and approach more people.
In August this year our director asked me to coordinate the interview section and my workload increased dramatically. The situation in Hong Kong was changing every day. Lots of breaking news happened. Many overseas practitioners and new practitioners were involved, but they were not familiar with the local situation. It was hard for me to coordinate and assign jobs.
“When Dafa disciples validate the Fa, how come one person can do what it would take ten or a hundred people to do? And, while validating the Fa you've seen that the kind of cultivators' mighty virtue that the Dafa disciples in Mainland China have displayed in the face of death is something ordinary people couldn't achieve--that's not something ordinary people could do.” (“Teaching the Fa at the 2003 Midwest-U.S. Fa Conference,” Collected Fa Teachings, Vol. III )
In an ordinary media company, their interview department normally has dozens of people and different teams. We have limited manpower. I think we should first improve our professionalism and then network with other professionals. We can ask for help from our friends in other media for photos and other things. We should visit the supervisors of other media and get to know them.
Letting Go of Fear and Saving Sentient Beings on the Front Line
Hong Kong is the battleground of righteous and evil. It witnessed the Anti-23 in 2003, the fight for universal suffrage, the Umbrella Movement, the legislative council elections and the recent controversy over the extradition bill. Our media in at the mouth of the evil. We have gained a foothold in Hong Kong. I feel the huge responsibility of saving sentient beings here.
The Hong Kong police opened fire in the early morning hours of June 12. After I finished working on the newspaper, I wanted to go to the Admiralty to have a look. But no photographer was willing to go with me. Only a new colleague was willing to carry the camera for me. At the site, I was in charge of filming while the new colleague only shot footage while I did the live broadcast. Policemen entered the government headquarters one batch after another. I wasn’t wearing my journalist's vest. Five plainclothes policemen surrounded me. They looked vicious. These police were different from those five years before during the Umbrella Movement. I kept calm and smiled at them. Soon the tension eased.
Since then, on every live broadcast, I treat the police with kindness even though the news of their violence, killing and rape have been reported. The hatred between the police and protesters keeps increasing. Protesters often cursed at the police. I didn’t repeat those words on my live broadcasts. Policemen are also sentient beings that we should save. As media, we only record history and shouldn’t be controlled by emotions.
I've never liked fight scenes. I would fall asleep when I watched war movies or leave the cinema early if there were war scenes. But since the police shot at people on June 12, the situation was escalating like a war. I hated those clashes at the beginning, and was afraid of being hit myself. I tried to avoid the bullets when I interviewed people. But I couldn’t hide anywhere when the police shot tear gas every five seconds and thousands of round of tear gas a day. Master said,
“...just by remaining unmoved you could handle all situations.” (“Teaching the Fa at the 2005 Canada Fa Conference,” Collected Fa Teachings, Vol. V )
I tried to focus on the live broadcasts and interviews and remain steadfast in my belief that I am a Falun Dafa practitioner and Master has the final say. I reminded myself to send righteous thoughts more. Most of my fear has disappeared.
“The more hopeless things may seem, it’s possible hope will appear right before your eyes.” (“What is a Dafa Disciple,” Collected Fa Teachings, Vol. XI )
I realized that the more dangerous the situation is, the more power we have to save sentient beings. When the anti-mask law was passed, the society was full of red terror. It was still risky for reporters even if they wore gas masks. I overcame my fear that night, and went to do the live broadcast at Mong Kok. Many people were on the street with masks on. They seemed fearless. The next day, many children also went into the streets to protest. I collected many moving stories and broadcast them through our media. This encouraged a lot more people to come out to protest against the CCP's tyranny and made society more righteous.
Saving Mainstream People through Interviews
In late June this year, I interviewed a finance professional who's a local Internet celebrity. I did a report on him and uploaded his interview on social media. It attracted a lot of attention. The second interview was of a famous host of an Internet radio station. He analyzed the current situation. We put it on our social media and it went viral. The clicks ratio reached 700,000. I knew that Master was encouraging me and arranged me to save sentient beings by way of interviews. The situation in Hong Kong is constantly changing. Ordinary people like to know how experts interpret events. This is also a good opportunity to record history as it unfolds.
With cooperation of my team members, my interviews went up from one or two a week to one or two a day. The workload increased significantly. My team members had to transcribe and add subtitles before uploading online. There were a lot of complaints and the managers had some complaints against me. They thought I was validating myself. I felt the pressure and felt I was wronged. I had been working voluntarily for so many years and sacrificed so much. I felt that the other practitioners misunderstood me.
I had a dream one night. In my dream the expert I interviewed showed me his autobiography but the book was damaged. The only sentence that remained intact was that he read The Epoch Times and supported it. The second scene in my dream was great destruction and a great plague that had broken out. Even the earth had opened up and swallowed people. People were being saved through my efforts.
I woke up and realized that Master asked me to save more sentient beings quickly. I must rectify myself and let go of my emotions and ego. I must be humble when doing Dafa projects. I should interview more high level professionals. Soon our field opened up. Many government officials and elites who were not friendly to us before accepted our interviews.
During the process I made friends with them and told them the facts about Falun Dafa. Some of them went to Taiwan to watch Shen Yun with me. Some read Dafa books. Their interviews became more and more positive and played a good role in saving sentient beings.
Cooperating with the Coordinator Unconditionally
Practitioners often have different opinions on how to run The Epoch Times newspaper well. Ideas vary on how to report the news, whether to offer the newspaper for free, how to market our paper, etc. Coordinators are under great pressure.
“Carry it out unconditionally. Understand what I said? In many instances, when people are debating things at length, all it should take is that coordinator stating his stance on it, and then that’s what you do. Furthermore, with many things, he should be able to just go straight ahead, without having to consult you, and assign tasks for you to do. And why is that? Previously, on many occasions when you argued back and forth I didn’t express my views on this, for I consciously wanted to allow you to temper your own thinking and succeed at making your own paths. But now, ample time has been given, and what you should have, you now have. So it’s time to do away with that state.” (“Be More Diligent,” Collected Fa Teachings, Vol. X )
My understanding was that even though we are under a lot of pressure, practitioners should cooperate and work together, and this is the most crucial thing.
Looking back on my involvement in the media for these past more than ten years, I realize that I should work on the media project with a practitioner’s mindset. It doesn't matter which job I do. I should let go of my own preferences and should go to the front line if required.
“Whatever you experience during your cultivation—whether good or bad—is good, for it comes about only because you are cultivating. A cultivator cannot achieve Consummation when laden with human thoughts, laden with karmic debts, or laden with attachments.” (“To the Chicago Fa Conference,” The Essentials of Diligent Progress Vol. III)
I practice the exercises every morning and study the Fa with other practitioners at noon in the office. I will cultivate as diligently as when I just started to practice. I constantly remind myself that I should do Dafa projects with a practitioner’s mindset – I am not an ordinary person doing Dafa jobs. I am energetic every day. I realize that we will not achieve the best results in saving sentient beings unless we improve ourselves from the perspective of the Fa and come together as one body.
Please kindly point out anything inappropriate.
Thank you Master! Thank you fellow practitioners!
(Presented at the 2019 NTD and Epoch Times Fa Conference)