(Minghui.org) My hometown is a rather small village on a plain, and there are many other villages in the surrounding area. The arable land per capita in the region is pretty small, but the land is fertile for agriculture production. 

According to my mother, there used to be a wealthy family in our village, but all of their assets were carved up and given to others after the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) took power. That family was powerless to resist in any way, and they left for a faraway place with their young children. Nobody knew where they had gone. It’s said that the matron of the family came back once many years later, but she left again, greatly disappointed, because their property had long been carved up and shared by four or five families and nobody cared even to talk to her. 

Our village had grown bigger by the time of the Cultural Revolution, with about 20 households and a population of around 140 or 150, most of whom were children. 

Housing was very basic. Most families had around seven people living under the same roof, and some had over a dozen people crowded into one household. In some cases, two or three married couples had to share one roof, each with a small room for themselves. Even such a small village could not escape the devastating impact of the Cultural Revolution. Even though the adults worked very hard, most families still suffered a shortage of food. 

My maternal grandfather’s family lived about seven or eight miles from ours. During the period of the Republic of China, my grandfather could provide enough food and clothes for a family of seven or eight people even though he was the only one working in the fields. 

My grandma had bound feet and she never did any farm work all her life. She lived to her 80s. My grandpa was hardworking and intelligent. He busied himself on a few acres of land during the busy season and never needed anyone to help. Upon harvest time, he not only produced enough to provide for his own family, but also helped other relatives. During the slack season, he would cut into the mountain for quarrying, and sell the stone for cash. 

As a result, his whole family was well provided for, and my uncle was also able to attend school. There were always family feasts during festivals, and they could also afford to have tailor-made new clothes every year. My mother also wore beautiful cheongsams as a young woman. They indeed enjoyed a very happy family life then. 

Everything changed after the CCP usurped the state power. Later, my mom married my dad, but their peaceful life didn’t last long before the Cultural Revolution turned the entire country upside down. Our family often ran out of food. My grandpa was so worried that my parents did not have enough to feed us, that he started to secretly open up wasteland here and there to grow something to help us out. The CCP representatives in the village did many bad things, but no one dared to say anything. 

A Man Beaten to Death for Stealing a Few Heads of Garlic

My father had a buddy from the same village. They both participated in the Korean War in the early 50s and were sent back to the village after the war was over, without any veterans’ benefits, except for a few New Year pictures. Even this little “benefit” was stopped not long after. 

During the Cultural Revolution, there was not enough food to go around, so my father’s buddy went to steal a few heads of garlic from a nearby village and baked them in the earthen stove. Just then a woman from another household came to borrow something and she saw the garlic in the earthen stove. She then reported this to the production brigade. 

Soon after, this veteran was violently beaten by people from the nearby village, who were supported by the production brigade in our village. His injuries were so severe that he could not get out of bed and died a few days later, leaving behind his pregnant wife and three young daughters, the eldest of whom was not even ten. No one in the village dared to show any sympathy towards the devastated family. 

Twenty years later, a child in the villager’s family (the family that beat my father’s friend) grew up. One evening, he and others went out to catch frogs to sell to local restaurants. They messed up someone’s crops and were beaten up. All the others came back, except for him. No one knew what had happened to him, and police could not find his body, either. It has remained a mystery to this day. Some people say that it must be karmic retribution to the family for beating the man to death simply because he stole a few heads of garlic from their field.

My Paternal Grandpa’s Ordeal

My paternal grandfather was an old scholar who was knowledgeable and had strong common sense. He attended university in the Republic of China, and could be counted as a literati at the time. He was good at calligraphy, spoke well and was good at figures. As a result he was well-known in the local area. 

As some of my ancestors served as officials in the Qing dynasty, my grandfather’s family was pretty well-off. He was the only son in the family. He was well-built and considered to be quite strong. 

Although my father was the only child in the family, my grandpa still sent my father to the battlefield to participate in what the Chinese Communist Party called “War to Resist US Aggression and Aid Korea,” to serve as one of millions of cannon fodder for the CCP. Fortunately, my father returned home safely, but my family never received any care or benefits for his military service.

My father passed away at a young age soon after the Cultural Revolution started. My grandfather suffered the sadness of losing my grandmother in his midlife, the death of his only son in his old age, and yet, he still could not be spared from suffering during the Cultural Revolution. 

Simply because my grandfather once served as a baozhang (equivalent to a village head) during the time of the Republic of China, he was criticized and abused in public in front of all the villagers. His arms were pulled backward and his body bent down to the front in a painful position. The brigade leader instructed people to punch and kick him. My grandfather was in his 50s at the time. He was beaten so badly that he became incontinent on the spot. Still they would not give him a break and continued to abuse him.

My mother told me that when my grandfather served as a baozhang, he did many good things for the villagers, including giving his own money to those in need of help. However, people who had benefited from his kindness also turned against him under the CCP’s doctrine of “class struggle.” 

My grandfather was not rehabilitated for many years to come, with no pension or any benefits. Still, thanks to his good health, he managed to live well into his 80s through his own efforts, otherwise he would have long perished. 

I remember years later after the Cultural Revolution ended, when people asked him why he held no resentment towards those who had abused him during the Cultural Revolution and still treated them kindly, my grandfather said: “Heaven and Earth are enormous, we should not only look at this small place.” What he meant was that a man should have a big heart and not to be concerned about personal grievances.

Unfair Treatment of My Family

In the era of “collectiveness,” villagers worked together and their contributions were recorded as “work points.” Later, grain and other living supplies were distributed to each household according to the “work points” they had earned during the year. 

After my father passed away, my grandfather could not earn “work points” for his old age, we three children couldn’t earn any either because of our young age, so the whole family relied on my mother, who had to work very hard for our family. 

My mother was very smart and was able to do all kinds of farm work, including those done by men. Still, because she was a woman, the “work points” she earned were far less than those of men even though she did nothing less. At the end of the year, our family often got very little grain due to the lack of “work points,” and was designated as a “grain-deficient household.” 

One year, on the Eve of the Chinese New Year, we did not have any rice left to cook us a meal. Even so, the brigade still sent a few men to take away the tiles and the frame from our roof to offset the insufficient “work points” recorded for my mother. 

At the same time, a woman who was a relative of the Party secretary in our village was given much higher “work points” than my mother, and she was given more grain as an individual than what was given to us as a family of four. 

Flagrant Robbery

After the Cultural Revolution started, the brigade leader ordered every household to dig into the floor of each house, saying that such soil was fertile and could be used to boost production. He personally led villagers to remove soil dug out from each household, one after another. 

My mother told us that the village leaders assigned her to work in a water conservancy project elsewhere, then they sent men to dig deep into the floor of our house, and took away some valuable vases and antiques from our house, without leaving us any receipt. We never knew what happened to our family belongings and no one in the family dared to ask about them. 

The Ordeal of Breastfeeding Women and Babies

It can’t be more normal for babies to be fed when they are hungry. But such a basic human right was also taken away during the Cultural Revolution.

During that time, in order to stop breastfeeding women from going back to the village to feed their babies during breaks, the brigade leader in our village gave orders to move the fertile land near our village to a far-away place, so that the women could not manage to go back to feed their babies while working in the fields. The Party leaders had absolutely no concern for the hungry babies or their heart-broken mothers. 

However, the Party leaders in our village were very corrupt themselves. They expected free meals everywhere they went, and each one of them was well-fed and fat. Very often, they took their children with them to indulge in the free meals and always sought personal privileges whenever they could. None of their family members ever got hungry and many of their children turned out to be fond of eating and averse to work when they grew up. 

Whenever my mother talked about these things, she always sighed. She couldn’t understand why people like her worked so hard at the time, yet they were still always hungry and had no food to eat. 

In fact, it’s all because of the evil CCP. It is like a demon attached to the Chinese people and makes them go to extremes in doing things. It encourages people to do things utterly devoid of conscience without knowing the consequences and to behave in a way completely incompatible with traditional cultural concepts and values. 

My Mother’s Smile Not Seen in Decades

The Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party has systematically exposed the origin and development of the Communist Party and its true nature. After watching the videos produced based on the book, my mother could relate many of the things shown in the videos with her personal experiences. She found the book to be very truthful and felt it made great sense. She felt the book gives her hope and only by understanding the true nature of the CCP, can people really break free from its control.

Since then, my mother seemed to have changed into a different person. She has become much more broad-minded, a lot happier, and we often see a joyful smile on her face, a smile from deep in her heart that has not been seen for decades. 

Chinese version available

Category: Perspective