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Save the world or ruin oneself (Excerpt)

2009-04-07 Author:By: Fan Chongfeng

About the author: Fan Chongfeng, a PhD of Nanjing Normal University

April 13 is the day I should never forget. On that day, my life experienced a dramatic change, which brought me from one extreme to the other. On the same day last year, I was arrested for violating national laws and regulations for distributing illegal Falun Gong's materials.

In the eyes of normal people, my obsession with Falun Gong was deep; while in the eyes of Falun Gong followers, I was comparatively diligent. Falun Gong requires its followers to abandon fame, interest, affection and even life in the world. Accordingly, I gave up the upcoming PhD degree, a favorable job, my family members who love me devotedly, and even decided to end my life. I did these because I believed what I adhered to was the supreme truth in the universe, what I had done were great things and my death would rescue human beings.

Many people do not understand why there are so many people becoming obsessed with Falun Gong and why the Falun Gong believers will lose their mind, defy human society, destroy everything they've got and even commit suicide. I am also thinking about these questions after I have awakened to reality. I have been reviewing the past and surveying my soul in order to find the reason driving me into insanity. I find that each individual has his/her specific reasons, but most of us share a common desire, that is to cultivate our moral character, improve our temperament, and become a good person possessing the merits of "Truthfulness, Compassion and Tolerance."

When people begin to practice Falun Gong, they do try to find his own shortcomings, correct his improper behaviors and improve his moral standards. However, with the advance of cultivation, those people grow to believe they are the only good people in the world and tend to distinguish themselves from ordinary people. They judge people and society by the theory of Falun Gong, believe ordinary people are inferior to Falun Gong practitioners, and no philosophic theory would rival Falun Gong. Moreover, Li Hongzhi requires his follwers not only cultivate themselves, but also rescue human beings, which leads us followers to generating a strong impulsion to save the world and then resort to action. The result of "saving people" turns out to be making more people believe in Falun Gong and destroying the ones against it. During this period, the followers begin to regard themselves as the saviors. They become more and more paranoid and exclusive. In their mind, they are, next to Li Hongzhi, the utmost in the whole universe.

Reflecting upon my foolish behaviors, I find them closely related to the impulsion to rescue the world. I had the strong desire to help others even when I was a child. Whenever I know there is someone in trouble, I'd always like to help him or her. It is the irresistible desire to save others that makes me believe in Falun Gong's "Truthfulness, Compassion and Tolerance," and even make me believe I can cultivate myself into a deity and rescue the world. This desire was reaffirmed and reinforced by the doctrines of Falun Gong and I firmly believed what I did was absolutely right, that only Falun Gong could rescue the world's people, and I should spare no efforts to correct things contradicting with Falun Gong. Finally, I reckoned myself as the supreme savior.

In fact, people all have the desire to rescue the world more or less, and harbor the benevolence to help others. Righteous behaviors harmonize relationship between people and promote the social development. Owing to the countless pioneers who disregard their personal interests, we can enjoy the peaceful and harmonious life nowadays. Those pioneers win respect; while the so-called "saviors" of Falun Gong are cast aside, why? Their difference is quite obvious. The former is real, while the later is illusory. The real ones rescue the world; the illusory ones are antisocial.

The moment I believed I would become a Buddha to rescue the world by abandoning fame, interest and affection, I started to become antisocial. Defying everything in the world, how can I rescue the world; giving up my own life, how can I save others? The so-called "saving all sentient beings" is actually at the price of destroying all and disregarding lives. To normal people, those absurd behaviors are incredible; for us, deeming ourselves as deity, we enjoy those tragedies. When I fell into the grip of obsession with Falun Gong, I believed in every single word of Li Hongzhi. He said the suicide and autotomy of obsessed followers reported by media were all faked, then I believed we Falun Gong followers, advocating "Truthfulness, Compassion and Tolerance" and ahimsa, could not have done this kind of things. However, my own experience proved those frantic behaviors a truth. If my obsession continued, I would also conclude my life for gaining consummation and still treated it a heroic feat. My foolishness would only be groaned or mocked by others, for the death out of absurdness and obsession is truly miserable. Fortunately I awakened in time.

If you are not self-supporting, how can you support others? If you are not correct, how can you correct others? Self-supporting is the basis, without which, all other things are visionary. Falun Gong followers, including me, ruined the basis of self-supporting, on the contrary, tried to pursue the visionary. Giving up jobs, abandoning families, we wandered around to engage in Falun Gong activities and confronted with the government and society; we were destroying ourselves, our families and bringing about calamity to society. During the past year, I realized ever-increasingly that the real rescue starts from down-to-earth work, starts by myself and starts in the present rather than to reach for the imaginary.

Just as the statement of "Self-cultivation, family harmony, state governing and world peace" from Confucianism. To save the world and people, the priority is doing one' own job properly and cherish one's own life. People orientation means not only to respect others, but also to esteem oneself. There is a warning saying of Confucianism, "dutiful son should not stand under a dangerous wall." The "dangerous wall" goes beyond the meaning of wall itself, but it signifies all things threatening one's life. Only by behaving in accordance with this, can we fulfill our ambition and accomplish our achievements. If we do not cherish our lives, how can we make contribution to our family, country or society? Self-supporting and self-love are basis of rescuing the world. The real kind people cherish their own lives first and then help others with the heart of mercy and indebtedness. The reason why Taoism thrives all through history is his emphasis on cherishing life. Lao-tzu said, "If a man loves life most, he can be bestowed to govern the state." Those who intentionally abandon their lives to rescue the world only harm themselves.

Falun Gong is an evil cult because it makes the people who originally want to cultivate moral character and develop temperament deviate from their good will, abandon their own lives and imperil the society. Falun Gong is a cult with anti-humanity and anti-society features. Like other cults in the world, once Falun Gong followers have blind faith in their Master, and believe that human society has disobeyed the decree of God and would be destroyed, they will regard themselves as saviors, defy the people and laws in real world, and become antisocial by killing innocent people and bringing about social turmoil. The followers themselves will also become the victims of their foolish behaviors.

The correct way of rescuing the world lies in behaving ourselves. To rescue others in critical occasions regardless of personal interests is respectful and deserves to be praised. My tortuous experience adequately proved the way of rescuing the world preached by Falun Gong is antihuman and antisocial, which can only harm ourselves rather than rescue the world.

(Kaiwind.com, April 16, 2008)