Everlasting Memories from My Three Trips to Beijing to Speak the Truth
(Minghui.org) In the early morning of July 20, 1999, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), headed by Jiang Zemin, suddenly started arresting Falun Gong practitioners around the country and forbade people from practicing Falun Gong (also called Falun Dafa).
Shocked, I thought, “How could this be happening? The authorities must have made a mistake. Falun Gong teaches people to be kind and does wonders to people’s health. It has every benefit and no drawbacks.”
Thinking back, decades of hard work had given me numerous awards and honors, but the overwork also resulted in illnesses. I had to retire early for health reasons, only to find out a year later that I had breast cancer.
As my life was slipping away, I fortunately began practicing Falun Dafa. In just one month of Fa study and practicing, all my illnesses were gone.
I have also witnessed many Falun Dafa practitioners’ dramatic physical and mental changes, their acts of kindness, as well as the great benefits of Falun Dafa in the areas of social stability and moral elevation.
As a beneficiary of Dafa, I could not sit there and do nothing. I thought, “I have to go to Beijing and report what I have personally witnessed and experienced, and tell the authorities a word of truth: ‘Falun Dafa is Good!’”
First Trip to Beijing: Escaped When Being Bused
I flew to Beijing on the afternoon of July 20, 1999. I got off the plane and arrived at Zhongnanhai, the central compound of CCP leaders, in half an hour. A middle-aged man approached me and asked, “Big Sister, are you a Falun Gong practitioner?” I said yes.
He waved his hands, and four police officers immediately came and snatched my handbag. They found a pocketbook version of Zhuan Falun. One of them held it up and said, “Here’s the evidence.” The man confiscated my book and pushed me into a police van. I was robbed before even I realized it.
I was taken to the police station located next to Tiananmen Square. The yard of the station was full of Falun Gong practitioners. The police who took me there handed me and my book to an officer in the station. Wherever that officer went, I followed. At 8 p.m., I got my book back.
We were bused over to Wanshoushan Stadium that night. Between 2,000 and 3,000 Falun Gong practitioners were already there, including elders and children. It was 100 degrees Fahrenheit at the time, and one could barely breathe.
More than 200 police officers were there too, and some of them collapsed from time to time despite having a constant supply of icy cold water. However, not one Falun Gong practitioner in the stadium complained about the heat, hunger or thirst, and not one child cried.
A large group of soldiers arrived at 3 a.m. and dragged us into buses. I told the soldiers, “You, our so-called people’s dear soldiers, instead of doing disaster relief as the Yangtze River is flooding, what are you doing here? Don’t you know Falun Gong is good?” The soldiers hung their heads.
No one told us where we were taken. Busloads of Falun Gong practitioners were driven out of Beijing. My bus arrived in Shijiazhuang City on the morning of July 21. Later on, I managed to escape with the help of other practitioners. I immediately got on a van and got back to my city.
It was said that on the night of July 20, different sized public transit vehicles from Beijing were used to transport practitioners, and more than 40,000 were driven out of Beijing.
Second Trip to Beijing: A Long Walk
My mother, younger brothers and younger sisters all practiced Falun Gong, and among them, my eldest younger sister had participated in the peaceful appeal on April 25. I went to her home as soon as I got back.
She came home after 6 p.m. She said as soon as she saw me, “Sister, we’re going to appeal in Beijing. Right now vehicles are not allowed to go northbound, and trains have stopped selling tickets, so we have decided to go on foot. Are you joining us?” I said, “Of course.” It didn’t occur to me that I hadn’t eaten since the day before.
The 11 of us left home and took National Highway 107 on our walk to Beijing. We were 250 miles from Beijing. We ran into numerous Dafa practitioners on the road, some on bicycles, some on motorcycles, but many were on foot like us.
There were entire families of several generations with us too. They left home in such a hurry that they did not even lock the door. We all wanted to go to Beijing and tell the authorities the truth.
At midnight, we ran into two taxis heading the opposite way. The drivers were former coworkers of my sister who had been laid off. We asked them if they would drive us to Beijing, and they immediately agreed after we told them what we were doing. The taxis turned around, and the eleven of us got in.
When we were passing Shijiazhuang, which was 187 miles from Beijing, we had to get off because the national highway was blocked off and lined with soldiers who would arrest anyone in sight. Dafa practitioners had to go into the “green curtain” of tall crops along the sides of the road. The older ones walked with difficulty with canes, and some developed big blisters on their feet.
Due to the darkness, we could not talk loudly, and our group was split up. I followed the railway line to avoid getting lost. The barbed wires along the track tore my clothes into pieces.
I got off the railway line at 5 a.m. and walked into a township. While passing the front yard of a hotel, I saw my sister and a few others from our group being held inside the big iron gate. Not able to talk to them, I just quickly waved at them to say goodbye. The morning has broken, and I thought, “I must go on. I cannot go back. I must go to Beijing.”
Alone in the wilderness, it seemed the scorching hot weather was going to roast me alive. My mouth was full of blisters. I could not swallow my saliva and had to spit it out. I hadn’t had anything to eat or drink for three days, nor had I slept.
I felt Master was next to me. I had only one thing on my mind: Hurry up! Get to Beijing and tell the authorities to stop the persecution of Falun Gong. Falun Dafa is good! Master, please strengthen me so I can arrive in Beijing before dark today.
Under Master’s protection, I was able to stop a taxi on a small road next to the high way. The driver said, “It’s 10 miles from here to Beijing.” I thought I heard him wrong. How did I travel 250 miles in less than 24 hours? Last night, the taxi drivers drove us about 40 miles, then how did I walk the other 200 miles? Everything was arranged by Master.
I asked the driver to drive me to Chang’an Avenue in Beijing, and he agreed.
At 5 p.m. on July 22, 1999, I arrived in Beijing again. I saw many soldiers eating box meals on Chang’an Avenue, and I wondered where they would be deployed next. The Chang’an Avenue was lined with sentries, so I got on a bus to avoid them.
The bus didn’t stop at Tiananmen West Station. I shouted “Stop,” but the bus didn’t stop until three stops later. I got off the bus and hailed a taxi. I asked the taxi driver to take me to Tiananmen Square, but he told me Tiananmen Square was locked down and he couldn’t drive me there.
I asked him to drive me along Chang’an Avenue and I would jump out of the car when it passed Tiananmen Square. He wouldn’t do it and said, “If I did that, both my car and I would be over.” He turned on the radio, and I heard the public announcement of the campaign to suppress Falun Gong.
An hour later, the taxi driver dropped me off at Qianmen (Front Gate to the south of Tiananmen Square). I hurried to Tiananmen Square but saw very few people in it. I saw a lot of people an hour earlier–where did they all go?
That night, I saw many Dafa practitioners sitting in Tiananmen Square and plainclothes police constantly harassing them. At midnight, the square was placed under curfew. I left and found a place to rest for a little while.
The roads were still full of sentries at 3 a.m. All roads that led to state agencies, including the State Bureau of Letters and Calls, were blocked. Vehicles of all sizes were parked near Zhongnanhai, and they already held a lot of practitioners. I sat in a taxi and circled the area a few times. The driver told me not to get off because anyone who showed up would be immediately arrested.
A few days later, I left Beijing and went back to my sister’s home. A practitioner who was also at her home told me what I didn’t know.
She had arrived in Beijing on a bicycle on the afternoon of July 22. It was her first time in Beijing, and a kindhearted stranger took her to Tiananmen Square. There were a lot of people in the square at the time.
Around 6 p.m., someone shouted, “All Falun Gong practitioners step forward!” They did. Immediately, large groups of soldiers encircled the Square and locked it down. Several large vehicles immediately arrived, and the soldiers began throwing practitioners into the vehicles. If anyone resisted, the soldiers would beat or kick him or her with the butts of their rifles, batons, and fists.
No matter how much violence the soldiers used, no Falun Gong practitioners fought back. A pregnant woman walked a little slowly and was kicked twice. Blood immediately ran down her pants, but the soldiers ignored it and still threw her into the vehicle.
Most of the practitioners came from Shandong Province, and they were the most steadfast. Dafa practitioners recited Master’s poem,
“In life, nothing sought,In death, regretting naught;Washing away all wrong thought,Buddhahood, with lessadversity, is wrought.”(“Nothing Kept,” Hong Yin)
On July 22, 1999, the public announcement of the launch of the suppression of Falun Gong was aired on radio and TV. From then on, national radio and television stations started slandering Falun Gong 24 hours a day, and the persecution was rolled out across the country.
I returned to my hometown and saw that the persecution had become even more severe.
Typically, the authorities would ask practitioners only one question–whether they still practiced. If the answer was yes, the practitioner would be subject to dismissal, arrest, torture, and forced labor; if the answer was no, the practitioner would be free to go home.
I felt the sky was dark in Beijing and in all of China.
Third Trip to Beijing: Armed Officers Meet Practitioners in Hometown
The People’s Daily, the CCP’s mouthpiece, published an editorial under the order of Jiang Zemin and defamed Falun Gong as a “cult” on October 27, 1999. That night, I went to Beijing for the third time with many practitioners. I wondered, “Am I not allowed to speak a word of truth after making three trips to Beijing?”
We arrived at the State Bureau of Letters and Calls. As soon as we showed up at the gate, several plainclothes police grabbed us, threw us into a police van, and detained us in Xicheng District Detention Center of Beijing.
I suffered indescribable humiliation in the detention center. The guard instigated the head inmate to curse me nonstop no matter what I was doing. I was coughing and running a fever and wanted a sip of hot water badly, but the head inmate forbade me to drink any hot water because she wanted the hot water for a sponge bath.
The 194-square-foot cell held 38 people. The head inmate and her five friends took one side, and the rest of the room was too small for the other 32 people to sleep. We had to take turns to sleep eight at a time each night.
Falun Gong practitioners refused to recite the jail rules; instead, we recited the Dafa teachings and did the exercises together. We told the inmates about the goodness of Falun Dafa.
Some of the criminal offenders had illnesses, and we cared for them as much as we could. One day, the head inmate punished me by forcing me into a stress position called “flying the airplane.” All the criminal offenders kowtowed to her and begged her to stop because Falun Gong practitioners were good people.
When we left the cell 12 days later, everyone except the head inmate cried.
Police took the ten of us back to our hometown. Upon arrival, I got off the train and saw that the platform was full of armed police. I found it ridiculous. Why would the CCP, which was equipped with atomic bombs and millions of troops, be so afraid of kindhearted Falun Gong practitioners?
A fellow practitioner and I were illegally held in a detention center for one month.
Since the very beginning of the persecution, my knowing side has been laughing at the persecution, laughing at its futility.