Local Falun Gong practitioners went to the center of Jerusalem on September 8, to introduce Falun Gong and raise public awareness about the persecution of the practice in China.
Falun Gong (also known as Falun Dafa) is an ancient Chinese spiritual practice that includes five meditative exercises. Assimilation to the values of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance is the foundation of the practice. The practice is taught all around the world at no cost.
The Chinese communist regime launched the persecution of Falun Gong in 1999, a persecution that continues to this day.
Jerusalem, the capital city of Israel, is a major tourist destination, and is considered the holy city for Jews, Christians, and Muslims.
Practitioners distributed informational leaflets and talked with passersby about the persecution. Many people expressed their support and signed a petition calling for Jiang Zemin to be brought to justice for his crimes against humanity. Jiang is the former Communist Party leader who launched the persecution campaign against Falun Gong practitioners.
The exercise demonstration, something not seen every day in Jerusalem, caused great interest among the passersby, and it seemed that the peaceful energy around made everyone forget the burning sun. People stopped and talked with practitioners for a long time, offering support and encouragement. “Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance is good” and, “well done!” were often heard over the course of the activity.
Oleg Fleischer, who stopped to visit with the practitioners, was very interested in learning more about the persecution. He promised to publish the Jerusalem activity and the entire story of the persecution on his popular Facebook blog.
Yocheved, a French woman living in Jerusalem, said that she had never heard of Falun Gong, and that she was very interested in learning more about it. A practitioner told her the history of the practice, and how the Communist Party arrests law-abiding people and murders them to harvest their organs for profit in the transplantation industry. The practitioner compared the persecution of Falun Gong to the Holocaust. Yocheved was stunned to hear about the organ harvesting and agreed with this comparison.
An older man who passed by also received a leaflet on the organ harvesting in China. He stopped walking, read a little, and said, “I am originally from Budapest, Hungary, where people do not know much about what is going on in China. But where I live now, Canada, a lot of people know about it.” He then said, “I know what communism is. Because in Hungary I barely survived.” Hearing about the persecution moved him profoundly. Before the gentleman left, he wished the practitioners success in their efforts.
Another older man passed by, and when a practitioner handed him a leaflet, he declined to take it. He went to the nearby lottery booth. The practitioner smiled and said, “Okay, we will wait until you win.” When he passed by again, he glanced at the practitioner who asked him with a smile, “Well, did you win?” while handing him the leaflet. This time the man took the leaflet and asked what it was about. The practitioner told him that law-abiding people in China were being murdered because they believed in the values of Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance.
“What do I care about what happens in China?” replied the man. The practitioner then told him why Jews, especially those who went through the Holocaust, should not be indifferent to genocide. He finally understood and was very glad to talk with the practitioner, agreeing that the persecution was definitely a bad thing.
A local resident, who was deeply moved upon learning about the persecution, said, “It is very sad that values like Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance are not in the core values of the Chinese communist regime. Although Falun Gong is not a political or revolutionary system, the rulers there understand that if it spreads, it will require a major change in the regime – one that is not built on grace and tolerance.”