EFS White

Question about Falun Dafa / Falun Gong

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Posted (edited)

I came across a manual describing the teachings, and touting the benefits of Falun Dafa / Falun Gong and thought it sounded like a very intriguing branch of cultivation practice.

 

If anyone has worked with this approach I would greatly appreciate to hear your opinion on this path and methodology, and any additional resources you can point me to.

 

If also anyone may offer further insight as to the "Falun" and its activation, I'll appreciate your input. Is it possible to create (?) and activate (?) the Falun in solitary study and cultivation training?

 

My best regards!

Edited by EFS White
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Years ago I was interested in Falun Dafa, but was recommended against practising it because I had trouble with mental illness in the past. I remember there was trouble/controversy with this practise, and googling it now, it also is symbolized with a swastika. Although this wasn't always a troublesome symbol, perhaps there is some sort of link there with the controversy and why I wasn't encouraged to start with it.. It may be a very good practise for many people, but I wanted to be on the safe side..

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I know next to nothing about them,  but I didn't care for the sectarian push in their public dance concert presentation which I went to thinking it would be based purely on Chinese history of a non-sectarian kind... (other than some references to ancient schools of religious Taoism and old mythology)  which to me it seemed they were co-opting to give credence to their school.? 

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I looked into Falun Dafa many years ago. Bought and read the book, attended a group practice which was very vague and shallow ... and quickly decided that it was a little too cultish for my tastes. Subsequently,  I had heard that the Chinese government was very suspicious of the movement ... rather, I should say more suspicious than normal. The group seemed to want to elevate the founder to more than just a figurehead. He grew large crowds that seemed a little too political from what I had read.

 

Anyway, I bailed out and never looked. That was many ... 30ish ... years ago. Maybe they got better. I dunno.

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If you would like to improve your health, there are many Qigong available, and some of them are translated to English.

http://ihqfo.org/en/index.php?p=news_list&lanmu=10

 

FLG showed up after 1992. It did not have a long history and did not have a respectful linkage.

Based on the book of FLG and people's experiences, I did see any advantages of it compared with other Qigong.    

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On 7.4.2019 at 8:21 PM, thursday said:

Years ago I was interested in Falun Dafa, but was recommended against practising it because I had trouble with mental illness in the past. I remember there was trouble/controversy with this practise, and googling it now, it also is symbolized with a swastika. Although this wasn't always a troublesome symbol, perhaps there is some sort of link there with the controversy and why I wasn't encouraged to start with it.. It may be a very good practise for many people, but I wanted to be on the safe side..

I don't know what they practiced, but there are many Buddhist qigong out there. Swastika is common in Buddhism so there is nothing surprising if it's used in China, India or Japan. It becomes an evil symbol when combined with evil beliefs.

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On 2019-04-07 at 3:19 PM, EFS White said:

 

and any additional resources you can point me to.

I believe there were two books, Falun Gong and Zhuan Falun(?). 

And a series of free lectures. 

 

And some ranting about yellow foxes and weasels, later on there were the interview where the aliens entered the discussion. 

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Posted (edited)
On 12-4-2019 at 8:43 AM, kondensation said:

I don't know what they practiced, but there are many Buddhist qigong out there. Swastika is common in Buddhism so there is nothing surprising if it's used in China, India or Japan. It becomes an evil symbol when combined with evil beliefs.

 

If one feels neutral about seeing a swastika or is inclined to only remember the positive history consciously, then that's all good for me. How did you mean: "it becomes an evil symbol when combined with evil beliefs"?

Edited by thursday
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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, thursday said:

If one feels neutral about seeing a swastika or is inclined to only remember the positive history consciously, then that's all good for me. How did you mean: "it becomes an evil symbol when combined with evil beliefs"?

 

It was used positively for thousands of years, negatively for only two decades or so and that happened almost exclusively in European cultural sphere. In Asian countries people mostly aren't aware of the evil that you associate with the symbol when they use it in their religious symbolism for millenia.

 

 

Edited by kondensation
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Falun Dafa is/was a cult, with a delusional teacher and teaching. It strikes me energetically as messing up people's qi, but that's just my personal impression of it.

Unfortunately, the Chinese government was killing a lot of Falun Dafa practitioners. Very horrible. I don't know if that still happens today. This is a really strange thing to think about in our enlightened information age, when we come from societies in which we're free to practice any religion. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Persecution_of_Falun_Gong

The swastika was an Eastern symbol long before the Nazis used it. The Nazi version is often reversed and on its edge (like in the shape of a diamond), whereas the real version is often on its side (like in the shape of a square)...but not always. It's a symbol that has something to do with the big dipper revolving around the pole star, and it signifies good fortune among other things. It doesn't stop meaning what it does just because the Nazis used it, but it is problematic if it's viewed by the uninformed, and is misunderstood.

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Posted (edited)
23 minutes ago, kondensation said:

 

It was used positively for thousands of years, negatively for only two decades or so and that happened almost exclusively in European cultural sphere. In Asian countries people mostly aren't aware of the evil that you associate with the symbol when they use it in their religious symbolism for millenia.

 

 

 

That is true of course. Apparently it's not even the same symbol, I was uninformed. Moving on.

Edited by thursday

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1 hour ago, thursday said:

That is true of course. Apparently it's not even the same symbol, I was uninformed. Moving on.

 

I wasn't calling you uninformed, my friend...I meant people who would call qigong practitioners Nazis.

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Posted (edited)
16 hours ago, Aetherous said:

 

I wasn't calling you uninformed, my friend...I meant people who would call qigong practitioners Nazis.

 

Thank you for the clarification my friend, I wasn't completely sure what you meant. I meant no disrespect towards either Buddhist or qigong or Falun Gong practitioners or teachers.

Edited by thursday

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I practiced it for over 10 years. Gave it up a couple of years back to focus on Buddhist practices.

 

It's not in any way a cult. It is an extremely safe, healthful practice but at its root is l the idea that your spiritual breakthroughs are tied to the cultivation of your heart - how well you embody the characteristics of truthfulness, compassion and forbearance. It teaches you to turn the other cheek when being abused by others. Not only remaining calm when being attacked but remaining compassionate toward others. 

 

It's completely free - there's no membership, fees or mandatory group attendance. You can literally download the book and videos and practice on your own without ever meeting another practitioner.

 

I stopped practicing because I got stuck at a certain level and felt like I wasn't progressing anymore. I still have a bunch of friends who practice and get loads from it. 

 

I won't get into a debate about it here. It was banned in China because there were 100 million people practicing it in the 90s. Which is utterly terrifying for the communist leadership, as the founder wasn't a party appointee.

 

The cult propaganda came later and included loads of coerced testimonies and falsified footage. A good friend of mine was tortured for about three months before finally agreeing to give a false testimony to the tv station about how it ruined his life.

 

The reality is a innocuous, peaceful practice. 

 

 

 

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On 4/13/2019 at 3:57 AM, Vajra Fist said:

The reality is a innocuous, peaceful practice. 

 

I recall the books by Li Hongzhi being very culty and weird. It was more like a religion than a form of qigong.

Here's what looks to be an official summary of Falun Dafa.

No offense meant to people like you who enjoy practicing this, but when things involve unique beliefs rather than simply a physical exercise (such as belief in an intelligent entity called a Falun, which is implanted into your lower abdomen by the master, Li Hongzhi), it can be defined as a "cult" by some people.

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Curious as to the back story of Falun Gong, the origins... like How did Mr Li come to the practices? Were they channeled or did he claim to invent them or learn them somewhere? Anyone know?

 

 

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4 hours ago, Fa Xin said:

Curious as to the back story of Falun Gong, the origins... like How did Mr Li come to the practices? Were they channeled or did he claim to invent them or learn them somewhere? Anyone know?

 

 

 

Interview with Li Hongzhi:

 

TIME: When did you learn about qigong?
Li: I started to learn when I was four years old. I was very young, and my teachers taught me aspects that were very simple.

TIME: Who were your teachers?
Li: I do not wish to have their names known. I had masters in two schools. Prior to the Cultural Revolution people enjoyed quite a bit of religious freedom. Chinese were quite used to such things. It was like going to church in the West.

TIME: When did you start teaching?
Li: I am more than 40 years old, and I have been practicing qigong for many years. When qigong became popular, I did not come out in the public. I did not want to teach about stopping illnesses or keeping fit.

TIME: What made you finally come out?
Li: When these masters asked me to come out. At the time I said that there were too many people practicing qigong, and I said that I did not want to cure illnesses or to help people keep fit. They said, What you do will be different. These people who are teaching how to cure illnesses and teaching fitness, are paving the road for your coming out.

TIME: Where were these masters?
Li: They were in the mountains.

 

 

Spoiler
Interview with Li Hongzhi
By WILLIAM DOWELL Monday, May 10, 1999
 
TIME: How does Falun Gong differ from other types of qigong?
Li: There are different practices of qigong in China and in other countries, but they are primarily aimed at healing illnesses or keeping fit and maintaining good health. I am teaching a higher level of qigong. It encompasses a greater content. It is like the Tao, which is known in the Western world.

TIME: And this expresses an inner energy?
Li: You probably know that some people have supernormal capabilities. They are unique capabilities that are created during the course of the cultivation practice. In order to reach a higher level, we require people to reach the perfection or completion of cultivation. In Chinese we call this attaining the Tao.

TIME: In your book [Zhuan Falun] you talk about people levitating off the ground but you say that they should not show other people. Why is that?
Li: It is the same principle that Western gods in paradise should not be seen by ordinary mortals because they cannot understand its meaning.

TIME: Have you seen human beings levitate off the ground?
Li: I have known too many.

TIME: Can you describe any that you have known?
Li: David Copperfield. He can levitate and he did it during performances.

TIME: You have said that this type of qigong should not be used to cure illness. Why is that?
Li: Healing illnesses belongs to the lower level of qigong. A person with an illness cannot practice to a higher level. One has to purify one's body in order to have gong. Healing and fitness are for laying a foundation at a lower level of practice.

TIME: Would you use qigong to cure an illness?
Li: I can do all of this, but I won't do it.

PAGE 1��|����|��
Thousands of members of a rapidly growing worldwide spiritual movement descend on Beijing and spook a communist leadership wary of any such organized dissent
TIME: Why not?
Li: Because I only teach people how to learn this dafa [great law] and to practice cultivation. I only teach the principles of fa to mankind. I won't do anything else.

TIME: What is the final goal?
Li: The ultimate purpose is to enable people to attain the Tao and to complete their cultivation practice. In the end they can free themselves from the worldly state. I know that human lives are not created from the dimension that human beings think they know.

TIME: Why does the master reveal this path to the qigong now?
Li: Mankind has many things that it never knew before. What I can tell you is that human moral values are no longer good. In the course of the cultivation practice, one can upgrade oneself. Many people will be able to complete their cultivation and attain the Tao. There will be some who will not be able to complete cultivation but will become very good people.

TIME: Why did you come to New York?
Li: In China, the government is a centralized government. Because the number of our practitioners is large, the government may feel pressure.

TIME: It is difficult to teach in China?
Li: In China, there are more than 100 million who practice this. The official estimate of the number of practitioners is 60 million. I want to teach people to be good and not to be involved in politics. I told people not to get involved in political events to make sure that they have a very good practice in their environment without interference.

TIME: So why is the Chinese government concerned?
Li: America is a country with democracy. You probably don't understand what it is like in a country that has a centralized government. The Chinese government knows that what I am teaching is good and that I am teaching people to have high moral values. They are only concerned because there are so many people practicing cultivation.

TIME: When did you learn about qigong?
Li: I started to learn when I was four years old. I was very young, and my teachers taught me aspects that were very simple.

TIME: Who were your teachers?
Li: I do not wish to have their names known. I had masters in two schools. Prior to the Cultural Revolution people enjoyed quite a bit of religious freedom. Chinese were quite used to such things. It was like going to church in the West.

TIME: When did you start teaching?
Li: I am more than 40 years old, and I have been practicing qigong for many years. When qigong became popular, I did not come out in the public. I did not want to teach about stopping illnesses or keeping fit.

TIME: What made you finally come out?
Li: When these masters asked me to come out. At the time I said that there were too many people practicing qigong, and I said that I did not want to cure illnesses or to help people keep fit. They said, What you do will be different. These people who are teaching how to cure illnesses and teaching fitness, are paving the road for your coming out.

TIME: Where were these masters?
Li: They were in the mountains.

TIME: How did the movement spread?
Li: Many people practice qigong in China. They all want to practice it to the higher levels, but no one was teaching them. They all wanted me to teach them. Some people organized the events and applied to the government for approval.

TIME: When did you decide to come to America?
Li: I came here last year, and I started the application the year before that.

TIME: Did you feel you were in danger in China?
Li: The government did not express a clear position, but the security ministries felt that there were too many people practicing. When we tried to hold meetings, they did not approve them because they felt there were too many people.

TIME: What is the wheel that is Falun?
Li: It is a pattern, or a symbol on the surface. What it is inside is much better.

TIME: So it is an idea?
Li: In the West, the spirit is separate from the body. In the East these are things that are very real and concrete.

TIME: You talk about placing the wheel into the body.
Li: I can use my mind to direct and order things to happen.

TIME: Is cultivation achieved through mental effort or physical exercise.
Li: Both are needed.

TIME: What happens after one attains the Tao?
Li: We have all heard about the Chinese deities. When one completes cultivation, one has special powers.

TIME: Can qigong prevent death?
Li: In the West, one can reach paradise through cultivation practice after death. In the East, one can achieve a divine status through cultivation practice while one is still alive.

��|��2��|��
Thousands of members of a rapidly growing worldwide spiritual movement descend on Beijing and spook a communist leadership wary of any such organized dissent
TIME: You talk about the period of the end of Dharma.
Li: While Buddha Sakyamuni [563-483 B.C.] was teaching his Dharma, there was no written language so the Dharma was passed by word of mouth. After 500 years, human discourse changed Buddha Sakyamuni's original words and it came to an end. The ending of the Dharma means that the cultivation method began to become chaotic and could no longer enable people to practice cultivation.

TIME: Why does chaos reign now?
Li: Of course there is not just one reason. The biggest cause of society's change today is that people no longer believe in orthodox religion. They go to church, but they no longer believe in God. They feel free to do anything. The second reason is that since the beginning of this century, aliens have begun to invade the human mind and its ideology and culture.

TIME: Where do they come from?
Li: The aliens come from other planets. The names that I use for these planets are different . Some are from dimensions that human beings have not yet discovered. The key is how they have corrupted mankind. Everyone knows that from the beginning until now, there has never been a development of culture like today. Although it has been several thousand years, it has never been like now.

The aliens have introduced modern machinery like computers and airplanes. They started by teaching mankind about modern science, so people believe more and more science, and spiritually, they are controlled. Everyone thinks that scientists invent on their own when in fact their inspiration is manipulated by the aliens. In terms of culture and spirit, they already control man. Mankind cannot live without science.

The ultimate purpose is to replace humans. If cloning human beings succeeds, the aliens can officially replace humans. Why does a corpse lie dead, even though it is the same as a living body? The difference is the soul, which is the life of the body. If people reproduce a human person, the gods in heaven will not give its body a human soul. The aliens will take that opportunity to replace the human soul and by doing so they will enter earth and become earthlings.

When such people grow up, they will help replace humans with aliens. They will produce more and more clones. There will no longer be humans reproduced by humans. They will act like humans, but they will introduce legislation to stop human reproduction.

TIME: Are you a human being?
Li: You can think of me as a human being.

TIME: Are you from earth?
Li: I don't wish to talk about myself at a higher level. People wouldn't understand it.

TIME: What are the aliens after?
Li: The aliens use many methods to keep people from freeing themselves from manipulation. They make earthlings have wars and conflicts, and develop weapons using science, which makes mankind more dependent on advanced science and technology. In this way, the aliens will be able to introduce their stuff and make the preparations for replacing human beings. The military industry leads other industries such as computers and electronics.

TIME: But what is the alien purpose?
Li: The human body is the most perfect in the universe. It is the most perfect form. The aliens want the human body.

TIME: What do aliens look like?
Li: Some look similar to human beings. U.S. technology has already detected some aliens. The difference between aliens can be quite enormous.

TIME: Can you describe it?
Li: You don't want to have that kind of thought in your mind.

TIME: Describe them anyway.
Li: One type looks like a human, but has a nose that is made of bone. Others look like ghosts. At first they thought that I was trying to help them. Now they now that I am sweeping them away.,

TIME: How do you see the future?
Li: Future human society is quite terrifying. If aliens are not to replace human beings, society will destroy itself on its own. Industry is creating invisible air pollution. The microparticles in the air harm human beings. The abnormality in the climate today is caused by that [pollution], and it cannot be remedied by humans alone. The drinking water is polluted. No matter how we try to purify it, it cannot return to its original purity. Modern science cannot determine the extent of the damage. The food we eat is the product of fertilized soil. The meat we eat is affected. I can foresee a future when human limbs become deformed, the body's joints won't move and internal organs will become dysfunctional. Modern science hasn't realized this yet.

At the beginning you asked why I did such things. I only tell practitioners, but not the public because they cannot comprehend it. I am trying to save those people who can return to a high level and to a high moral level. Modern science does not understand this, so governments can do nothing. The only person in the entire world who knows this is myself alone.

I am not against the public knowing, but I am teaching practitioners. Even though the public knows, it cannot do anything about it. People can't free themselves from science and from their concepts. I am not against science. I am only telling mankind the truth. I drive a car. I also live in the environment. Don't believe that I am against science. But I know that modern science is destroying mankind. Aliens have already constructed a layer of cells in human beings. The development of computers dictates this layer of body cells to control human culture and spirituality and in the end to replace human beings.

��|����|��3
Thousands of members of a rapidly growing worldwide spiritual movement descend on Beijing and spook a communist leadership wary of any such organized dissent

 

Edited by KuroShiro
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The confusion between cultivation practices and the phenomena of Falun Gong is "programmed".

 

100 million people doing this  - you know any Qigong style that ever had that many?

 

This was subsidized to happen.

 

It is not about the technical aspect or details of Qigong.

 

It's not about whether the system practiced is "good" or not.

 

It's not even about Qigong.

 

It could have been a knitting party and same things would have happened.

 

 

 

 

 

 

-VonKrankenhaus

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On 15/04/2019 at 3:23 PM, Aetherous said:

 

I recall the books by Li Hongzhi being very culty and weird. It was more like a religion than a form of qigong.

Here's what looks to be an official summary of Falun Dafa.

No offense meant to people like you who enjoy practicing this, but when things involve unique beliefs rather than simply a physical exercise (such as belief in an intelligent entity called a Falun, which is implanted into your lower abdomen by the master, Li Hongzhi), it can be defined as a "cult" by some people.

 

I guess it's each to their own. In certain daoist practices they talk about the establishment of an energy mechanism in high level transmission. Like the master establishes aetheric 'training wheels' so the refinement of internal alchemy doesn't go wrong at high levels. My understanding is that it's a similar principle with the falun, it's not so much a sentient entity, but something to help refine virtue and qi developed through the cultivation and qigong into higher level energy.

 

It's either something that you believe exists or you don't. To call it a 'cult' because you don't believe in it is slightly disingenuous.

 

I did my university thesis on cults and brainwashing. That was about 15 years ago, but I vaguely remember the characteristics to look out for.

 

1. Separation from society or from influences that contradict the group's teaching

- there is nothing of the sort in Falun Gong. People practice in their daily life. (The drummer in David Bowie's band practiced Falun Gong)

 

2. High financial demands, often linked to progression in the group. Or else payment for higher level teachings through labour.

- you see this in Scientology. However everything is free in Falun Gong. All the materials, practices and everything are available to download for free online. There is no 'inner circle'.

 

3. Coercion or manipulation into following the group's teachings.

- it's a purely internal practice. You cultivate yourself and you have no accountability for that. Similarly no disconnect for leaving the group. I still have many good friends who practice and I meet up with them now and then.

 

4. An authority figure in the main founder

- Falun Gong does have this, admittedly. But then, most qigong schools do. Look at Chunyi or Wang Liping. Or that guy in the 90s who used to give six hour qigong transmissions. The schools are built around their authority. Moreover they often charge thousands of dollars for their teachings, whereas FG is all free. Plus Li Hongzhi is something of a recluse. I only saw him once in the decade that I practiced, and that was when I went to a seminar he gives once or twice a year.

 

Anyway, no offence if you disagree and still want to call it a cult. I don't practice any more so I have no vested interest. Just wanted to set the record straight as I see it. 

 

 

Edited by Vajra Fist
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