Introducing Falun Dafa in Iran
Shared at 2003 European Falun Dafa Conference
(Clearwisdom.net) I was born in Iran. After the war between Iran and Iraq, my husband, our son and I moved to Sweden and I have been living in Sweden about 17 years. I have had a hard life with an alcoholic father who beat my mother almost every night, and when I was 13 years old, he sold me to a rich handicapped man. That period of my life seem to me like a living hell, and then I ran away from him and after a while I got divorced. Then I tried hard to educate myself at university and I was arrested, because we/the students wanted democracy so the authorities kept me in prison for two years with a lot of suffering.
I got to know Falun Dafa before 1999, but I got in contact with practitioners in Stockholm after the ban of Falun Gong in China. At the beginning everything/most of it was hard for me to understand especially in the Swedish language, but the exercises helped me calm down and have harmony in my family and my environment. I decided to introduce Falun Dafa in Iran.
I was in Iran just two or three times and everything had changed there and it was strange to me. I tried to find some Iranians that were practicing abroad, but nobody called or contacted me, so I went to Iran and gathered people and taught them the exercises.
I remember the first gathering of people at my house, it was about 25 people and I had a heavy karma release, but I tried hard to do my best. Something strange happened that evening, it was a very hot summer and all of the windows were open. After finishing the exercises the weather became windy and it started to rain. I saw people speaking quietly with each other and I asked what was going on. One of them told me that Tehran had not had any rain for several months and the rain was a good sign and they thought Falun Gong had to be a good method, because the heaven had sent them the rain.
I stayed in Tehran two weeks and then went back to Sweden. Later I realized something was wrong over there, it was the books that were missing. So I decided to translate the book Falun Gong, and so I did.
Initially I obtained some help from a new practitioner in Iran but he could not continue, the translation of the book was really a good opportunity for me to cultivate but it was also very hard. It was quite easy to get the approval for publishing Falun Gong from the appropriate source and finally the book was published.
Introducing Falun Dafa alone in Iran was not easy but luckily I lived in Sweden and could be with other practitioners and participate in many activities and also study together with them in between.
One morning in Sweden, when I opened my eyes I heard myself reciting Zhuan Falun in Persian language loudly, so I understood that I could recite Zhuan Falun in another dimension and Zhuan Falun must be born in Persian in this dimension [as well]. So I started to work on it.
I was back in Iran again after the next two days. We held the 9 day video lectures, for the first time in Iran. Then I received a lot of disturbances and tests so I left the country and stayed in Sweden for 3 months and studied very hard and did the exercises to find out my problems. I cried many times with a broken heart and tried to read more and more. One day I felt my everyday people's heart was gone and I could feel more Shan, compassion and found out that my level had upgraded. Then I had the Fa power inside me and wanted to finish the translation of Zhuan Falun. I went back once again to Iran and this time I stayed there for nearly 6 months.
I was the only Dafa practitioner in Tehran, so I decided to begin introducing Falun Dafa somewhere; the best place was a park. I began to do the exercises during the summer in a popular park in Tehran almost very day. Every day new people came to our practice site and I sold books, introduction VCD's in Persian and handed out flyers. Sometimes we were 20 people in the park and I tried my best. Some people have continued practicing Falun Gong and even volunteered to become assistants. The rumors of our beautiful exercises could be heard in several places in town.
I had been working with polishing the translation of the book and other things during at least three months in Tehran, then my husband came to Iran and I received more help from him also. One day I felt my body was very warm and then I had a high fever, and it got stronger and stronger with much pain. With that high fever and pain it seemed my mind and my heart would collapse, but nothing was wrong with them, and I had a feeling that Master did not arrange this, something was trying to break down my belief.
My husband wanted to take me to a hospital because I was really dying. All the rooms were warm because of my fever. I tried to calm down my husband, and deep inside myself I told the old forces that I don't accept their arrangement and I would rather die than give up my belief. I asked Master to help me.
I was gone somewhere and I remember I had no energy to send forth righteous thoughts. The next day I could feel I was back again and I was very week. This was the only [really] bad thing that happened to me in Iran.
During these three months I worked hard on polishing the translation of the book and did my practice in the park, and took care of new and veteran practitioners. As soon as I went outside my house I would meet people that had a predestined relationship with us.
I also traveled to many other cities to spread Falun Gong. In one religious city near Afghanistan there were around 50-70 people who got to know Falun Gong and most of them bought our material. Now we have three good volunteer assistants there who stayed in Teheran several days together with a man from Kurdistan (who now introduces Falun Gong in Kurdistan) and other practitioners from Teheran. Meanwhile we studied several of Master's last articles, Zhuan Falun and did a lot of sending forth righteous thoughts and we also answered questions and discussed the current situation in China etc. We now have an assistant who has studied Falun Gong diligently by himself in English, who translates articles for those who don't speak English and the others are also doing their best. On Fridays all beginners and veteran practitioners are gathering to practice and study Zhuan Falun in Persian.
Many people are interested, especially those who are Buddhist, Taoists or have been doing other qigong or something similar. It has also come to a lot of people from Azarbadjian (a large ethnic group of people in Iran who speak Turkish but live in Iran). Because we had our VCD's and Falun Gong books as a package, some people in other cities have been able to get to know Falun Gong and they have contacted us for further information.
Something that I realized was that if Zhuan Falun is not translated in a country, there can be some misunderstandings within people, like they feel and call the practitioner "teacher," and I could see that they were attached to me, because they did not have self confidence and they needed someone to guide them, so I tried to avoid this issue, not creating for myself any attachment in my cultivation and clarified to them how to introduce Falun Dafa. When Zhuan Falun was ready, it was in the hands of the authorities for around two months, for approval and censorship review.
Imagine how it was when I had my application turned down (in Iran all new and foreign books have to first be approved by a specific body). Then I thought I should turn to some minister, which I did.
I got help from a minister and three of his secretaries. Zhuan Falun was going to be discussed in a group and settled for permission. I was at the office for eight hours and talked with nearly everyone who was there. I had to sit in the secretary's room for two hours. I did two hours of sending forth righteous thoughts without a single disturbance.
Then a civil mullah (the highest Iranian priest, with much influence in the society), some kind of chief there, asked me to go to his room and he asked me a lot of questions about myself and living in Sweden as well as about Falun Gong and why I did this and that. I tried to be kind to him and answer his questions in an upright way and then he began to compare Falun Gong with his religion and I felt like I was in a court. So I told him that "I am a good human being and cultivate 'truthfulness, compassion, forbearance' and you should not treat me like this." He apologized and recognized that he had done wrong and then he wanted to invite me to a media- and writers- celebration that evening.
Later someone told me that he learned that I was a good person. Seven o'clock in the evening we gained the publicizing permission without any censorship. Now Zhuan Falun is printed and it should be available in most of the bookshops in Teheran, at other cities and at various airports.
When we had more time, a practitioner suggested we established a Falun Dafa website and we did. With the help of other practitioners we are running it. Now there are good foundations with good assistants, who like each other and help each other, and they all know the importance of studying the Fa as they do in other countries, and they introduce Falun Dafa in Iran. They have set up their own translation group and get together 3-4 days each week.
During this period I had some tribulations and it wasn't easy since I was alone there. Anyway my best experiences were when I was in the Fa, which for me is when I don't have any intentions and have hundred percent trust in Master and use my divine side.