(Minghui.org) Willoughby, a suburb of Sydney, hosted a Lunar New Year Lantern Parade in the Chatswood district on February 5, 2023, and Falun Dafa practitioners were invited to participate in the celebration. Impressed by the bright colors and strong energy of the Tian Guo Marching Band, many spectators applauded their performance and some even danced to the melodies.
The parade wound along Victoria Avenue, Chatswood’s central business district. The mayor and many elected officials attended the parade and joined in the celebration.
Importance of Traditional Values
Tim James, a member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly, watched the parade. He enjoyed the event and said it was good to see the cultures and values presented by the various participating groups.
Mr. James explained that he’s known about Falun Dafa for many years. He remarked that the Tian Guo Marching Band is well organised and their performances are superb. He praised practitioners for their musical talents and their hard work. He said he liked everything about the band, from the traditional costumes to the musical selections.
He added that Dafa’s principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance are fundamental to society, Australian communities, and to individual human beings. He believes people should follow these principles. Mr. James also thanked Falun Dafa practitioners for their contributions to the community and wished them continued success.
Beauty Through Music
Zain Zawahreh watched the parade along with her family. As soon as her son saw and heard the Tian Guo Marching Band, he started to move with the music. Mother and son walked alongside band members along the parade route. Ms. Zawahreh said the band was well coordinated and the music was relaxing.
Clara from mainland China was with another participating group and she was excited to see the Tian Guo Marching Band. She said their music was soothing and their traditional costumes were outstanding. Having read about the persecution against Falun Dafa in China by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), Clara remarked that the suppression is wrong and that the CCP’s forced organ harvesting of prisoners of conscience is vicious.
Nason and his friend Keith Kireth also attended the event. They were very interested in the band’s performance and said they felt great energy while listening to the music.
Maryanne Neulist said she had a really good time at the Chinese New Year celebration. With her husband and son, the family of three walked along with the Tian Guo Marching Band the length of the parade route. Their young son also laughed and jumped in time to the music.
This was the first time that Ms. Neulist had heard about Falun Dafa, and she said she appreciated the practice very much, especially the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance. “It is great they brought us beauty through this amazing music,” she explained. She also said the suppression in China by the CCP is wrong and should be brought to an end.
Background: What Is Falun Dafa and Why Is the CCP Persecuting It?
Falun Dafa (also known as Falun Gong) was first introduced to the public by Mr. Li Hongzhi in Changchun, China, in 1992. The spiritual discipline is now practiced in over 100 countries and regions worldwide.
Millions of people who have embraced the teachings, which are based on the principles of Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance, and have learned the five exercises have experienced improved health and well-being.
Jiang Zemin, former head of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), perceived the spiritual discipline’s growing popularity as a threat to the CCP’s atheistic ideology, and on July 20, 1999, he issued an order to eradicate the practice.
Under Jiang’s personal direction, the CCP established the 610 Office, an extralegal security organisation with the power to override the police and judicial systems and whose sole function is to carry out the persecution of Falun Dafa.
Minghui.org has confirmed the deaths of thousands of practitioners as a result of the persecution over the past 23 years, though due to the difficulty in getting information out of China, the actual number is believed to be much higher. Countless practitioners have been imprisoned and tortured for their faith.
There is concrete evidence that the CCP sanctions the harvesting of organs from detained practitioners, who are murdered to supply China’s organ transplant industry.
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