3. People Resume Practicing Falun Gong After Regaining Their Freedom and Face up to Their Conscience
1) 111, 500 People Declare Their So-Called "Transformation" Null and Void
From January 2001 to February 2004, more than one hundred eleven thousand five hundred (111,500) people broke through the Internet blockade, and solemnly declared their so-called "transformation" (meaning to give up their belief in Dafa under forced brainwashing) null and void on www.clearwisdom.net. They declared that they either would resume or had already resumed practicing Falun Dafa. Among them there were quite a few Falun Gong practitioners who were "transformed" at the Masanjia Labor Camp.
One of them was Wang Wei, a practitioner from Anshan City, Liaoning Province. Wang Wei was abducted to the Masanjia Labor Camp because he practiced Falun Gong. He was released after he was forcefully "transformed" against his conscience. In order to deceive the general public, the camp authorities also made videos about how he was "transformed" at the camp. After his release, Wang Wei negated his statement made at the Masanjia Labor Camp against his conscience with his own action of starting to practice Falun Gong again. He was abducted again to Masanjia. Based on Wang Wei's request, his solemn declaration was sent to Clearwisdom net by his friends. This was done during the time the videos about Wang Wei's "transformation" made by the authorities were being widely broadcast. Wang Wei wanted his own declaration to be published on Clearwisdom so that people could learn the truth.
In his solemn declaration dated May 23, 2001, Wang Wei wrote, "Because of the brutal tortures by the evil forces and my own attachment of fear, I slandered Teacher and Dafa at Masanjia, and caused serious repercussions and deceived people. I now solemnly declare that everything that I did at Masanjia that did not conform to Dafa is all null and void. I will do my very best to make up the loss, practice with resolve, follow Teacher and Dafa diligently and closely, and fulfill my duty as a true and qualified Dafa disciple by striving to be better along the path of Fa rectification cultivation."
Another example was 36-year-old Liu Dongmei. She was an English language lecturer at the International Business Foreign Language Department of Northeast China Banking and Business University, and a master research student majoring in English Language and Literature. She was brainwashed at Masanjia and became one of the first group of "transformation representatives." On May 28, 2001, Liu Dongmei sent her solemn declaration to Clearwisdom, indicating that she would start cultivating in Dafa again.
In her declaration she wrote, "I started practicing Falun Gong around the end of July 1996. Falun Dafa not only allowed me to regain my physical health to the best shape, it also raised my virtue and purified my soul. In October 1999 I went to Beijing to validate the Fa. After returning home, I was abducted to the Masanjia Labor Camp and sentenced to three years of forced labor. At the Women's 2nd Center, the deputies forced me to give up Fa study and the exercises. Each day they would bombard me with video programs that slandered Teacher and Dafa. Furthermore they tried to deceive and baffle me with heretical comments from collaborators [former practitioners who have turned against Dafa under torture and brainwashing]. Because of my own attachments and lack of Fa study, the evil exploited my weakness and I became a collaborator like one of them."
Liu Dongmei further wrote, "It was never my own wish to abandon practice and to oppose Dafa. It was an act done under the high-pressure of persecution and my own lack of a clear mind. It was definitely not my own wish. I remember that when I was forced to accept being converted, as well as every time I was asked to do things against Dafa, I felt painful and hurt so much that I cried. If it were not because of this high-pressure coercion, I would never give up practicing Falun Gong. I would never have done things that will damage Dafa and against Dafa. Dafa gave me the true meaning of life. It is more precious than my own life."
Dongmei said, "I was released early on April 17, 2000. The Dalian City government '610' office grouped 12 collaborators from Masanjia into the so-called Dalian City Falun Gong Transformation Coaching and Assistant Brigade. I was asked to be the leader and I became the kingpin. Together with the so-called 'transformed personnel' who were released early from Masanjia and other personnel who were 'transformed' by us in the Dalian area, we held several dozen large-scale seminars over a large area in Dalian City. More than several hundred people attended such seminars. We became their political tool to persecute, suppress and undermine Dafa. Between September 12 and October 3, 2000 I went to other areas to 'convert' Falun Gong practitioners."
Liu Dongmei declared, "I will start cultivating Dafa, make up for the damages, expose and put a stop to the evil, and clarify the truth to people." She further emphasized, "It was the power of Dafa that helped me to return from going down a dreadfully wrong path."
2). More People Are Awakening
One day, a veteran practitioner who was transformed was summoned back to Masanjia to share her experience. The Ideological Education classroom was packed that day, with more practitioners and the group leader sitting out in the hallway. Since the guards did not attend the meeting, it became a practitioners' own meeting, very much like a big family reunion. This veteran practitioner felt more confident to speak from her heart.
She said, "Society now has a very high regard for Falun Gong. People praise Falun Gong practitioners for their courage to speak the truth without fear for their life or imprisonment. Look at all the government officials. How many of them are not corrupt to the core? All business organizations' management have become so corrupt, they could care less about the well being of the organizations. They treat government positions as a means to make money. They trade political power for wealth. Organized crime is rampaging because of their sinful behavior. The government has done nothing to correct them but has instead wasted all its effort to suppress Falun Gong. We used to have public health care. Now can common people afford to be sick? A little bit of illness could easily exhaust the family savings. We became healthy after practicing Falun Gong. Now they just won't let people practice. The government tried to force us with death threats. Exactly what crime did we commit?"
In the "Ideological Education" class another young practitioner stood up and asked the group leader, "When people lose their faith in the system and sense the crisis in their life, they will start exploring the meaning of life. What is wrong in seeking the truth? All Falun Gong practitioners did was just try to be good citizens, and that has been well recognized by society. We do not fight back when being punched or insulted under any circumstances, yet we were deprived of our right to speak. A people's government deprives its people's freedom. That does not sound right, does it?"
More practitioners stood up to speak out, "We love our country just like our own home, and we treat her like our mother. If our mother made mistakes and we kindly pointed that out, that would be the greatest love and care. But what happened to our mom?" "We want to go home! Our families want to see us so much!"
The class could not continue. The lecturing group leader gathered his notes in a hurry, "I cannot resolve these issues. I will relay your concerns to the higher authority."
As soon as the camp authority got hold of the news, they immediately started a new round of brutal coercion and suppression. All who were scheduled to be released before the years end were suspended. Even though the apparent unrest was suppressed, the undercurrent only grew worse.
Before the arrival of the so-called sensitive days, such as major holidays, May 13 (Falun Dafa Day), July 20 (The anniversary of nationwide open persecution of Falun Gong), the Two Meetings (People's Congress and People's Political Consultative Conference), many local labor camps would receive pressure from a "higher authority." They would then pressure Falun Gong practitioners to give up their practice in order to attain the required "transformation ratio." Yet the time right after the most brutal "Forced transformation by assaulting the stronghold (meaning most resolute practitioners)" is also the time when the highest number of practitioners renounce their "transformation."
Clearwisdom receives "Solemn Declarations" every day (Masanjia calls them "Reversal Declarations"). The day with the highest number of people sending in their declarations was July 13, 2001, when a total of 474 declarations were received. On August 30, 2001, 332 declarations were received. From these numbers we can see that coercion cannot change people's hearts. Truth, Compassion, Forbearance has touched and rooted itself in the deepest part of people's hearts. Any attempt to forcefully change them will be futile. At the same time, we can also observe just how widespread the persecutions is, because all such declarations have come through unimaginable obstacles, from being written down, hand delivered, until finally being uploaded to Clearwisdom before they could breakthrough the Chinese government blockade designed specifically to counter Falun Gong web sites. Some declarations were even sent out directly from the labor camps or brainwashing classes. From what we know about the web browsing environment in China and their surveillance of Falun Gong practitioners, we can be certain that the number of declarations we have received represent only a fraction of the practitioners who were subject to brainwashing and transformation.
3). Warning from Heaven
On the evenings of June 2 and 3, 2002, around 6 to 7 p.m., snow fell on the Masanjia Forced Labor Camp. The snow was like whirling sand hitting the windows. One could feel the cold chill to the bone. Wasn't such a rare weather condition a warning to people? Everyone has his or her own will. As China gradually carries out the economic reform and people's living conditions become better, a large number of Chinese who had suffered undue hardship for so many years started to cultivate according to Truth, Compassion, and Forbearance. When they practiced Falun Gong, they could obtain good health, raise their virtue, and restore and promote the Chinese culture. Such efforts could only be beneficial to society and China in general. Did they do anything wrong? Traditionally in China, a snowfall in June indicates a most outrageous wrong that occurs perhaps once in many millennia.