Nov 12th 2000


It seems Reiki and Pranic healing are passed. An alternative therapy from China, Falun Gong is gradually gaining in popularity in the capital. The therapy, which took China by storm and caused so much unease in the government that its practice was banned in the country and its practitioners prosecuted, and harassed; has been brought to Delhi by six volunteers who have come from Sweden and the US to spread it in this spiritual land.

"We are here to offer our services for the good of the mankind." says Mr Anders Eriksson, one of the volunteers from Sweden.

Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, is a traditional Chinese practice which was reintroduced as a way of life in China in 1992 by Mr Li Hongzhi, who fled to the US after an arrest warrant was issued against him [Editor's note: The author is incorrect. Mr. Li moved to the U.S. in 1998]. Since then, he has converted millions of people in the US and worldwide, who have reported dramatic improvement in their health and a deepened spiritual awareness.

Falun Gong (Falun means law wheel and Gong means practice) aims at the improvement of one's inner-self (mind and body) through meditation and exercise. Falun Gong is based on the universal principles of zhen (truthfulness), shan (benevolence) and ren (forbearance). It is a guide to stronger morals and virtues. To relieve stress and advance towards wisdom and enlightenment." says Ms Pirjo Svensson a volunteer from the US.

Falun Gong borrows terms and concepts of Buddhism and Taoism but doesn't involve any religious rituals.

Ms Suneeta Khullar, a resident of South Delhi, who is also a Reiki Master and a trained magnetic healer, finds Falun Gong exceptionally powerful. "It's very simple and easy. Moreover, I feel a tremendous flow of energy in myself since I took to it," she says. Mr Pramod Sharma, a lawyer, a recent convert also feels that the purification process within him has already begun.

"Falun Gong isn't about healing. Its about cleansing the body and creating harmony which would indirectly improve ones health," explains Ms Anna Chan; a volunteer from the US. The ritual of Falun Gong involve exercises early in the morning preferably in an open space. Then there are afternoon and evening sessions where the teachings of Master Li from his book Zhuan Falun (Revolving the Law Wheel) are read. A video session, which imparts philosophy lessons and benefits of Falun Gong, follows. Then comes the basic practice which includes five sets of gentle exercises meant to purify, open and strengthen the body's energy channels.

These exercises can be practised in a group or alone, anytime and anywhere, says Ms Chan. They intend to stay on for another few months. "We are also planning to go to Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai and Calcutta if things work out well," she adds. And particularly since the classes are free of cost. Falun Gong should pick up momentum fast.