[Selected Submission] On the Brink of Death, the Spark of Life Was Ignited Within Me
(Minghui.org) I used to suffer from Fever of Unknown Origin (FUO). My body temperature had always been somewhere between 37.3 and 37.8 degrees Celsius (about 99.14 to 100.04 degrees Fahrenheit) for as long as 21 years. I had been to all the major hospitals within the province, including tuberculosis hospitals, and had even been hospitalized and examined at a national hospital, yet all the test results came out normal and the cause of the fever could not be diagnosed. I also had severe insomnia, headaches, and general weakness.
At that time, I didn't know what it was like to not have a headache. It felt like there was a tendon in my brain that hurt all the time. If my head only hurt when I moved or shook it and otherwise it didn't hurt, I considered that not having a headache.
When I experienced insomnia, it was often accompanied by feeling hot and cold alternately. I could barely fall asleep after midnight or during the second half of the night, and if I had the symptom of feeling hot and cold alternately, then it was impossible to fall asleep at all. I had tried Traditional Chinese Medicine and Western medicine, including acupuncture, but nothing was very effective. I depended on various Anshen (meaning 'to calm the spirit') pills and decoctions all year around. Every night, I took sleeping pills and a variety of vitamin-based medicines so I could fall asleep.
Yet misfortunes never come singly. When I gave birth to our son, my mother-in-law was very sick and hospitalized and my mom was also sick in bed. In the month of confinement, I went to the hospital three times because of high fever. It was the hardest time of my life. Only sad tears accompanied me during these most painful days. As a result, I acquired a painful eye disease. When my eyes hurt, they felt dry, itchy, painful, and irritable. They were also very red and swollen. I couldn't watch TV, couldn't read the newspaper, couldn't look at anything for too long, couldn't write for more than a few minutes at a time, and couldn't cry at all. If I did these things, my eye would start hurting again and turn red, swollen, painful, and itchy. I was truly miserable. After that, I couldn't open my eyes like a normal person and could only squint.
The Desire to Live and the Painful Decision to Give Up
In 1998, I had a miscarriage and was sick beyond cure. That was also the turning point of my life. After the miscarriage, I was physically weaker than ever and suffered from complete insomnia. Decoctions, pills, sleeping pills...nothing worked. Due to long-term insomnia, weakness caused by FUO, and not being able to eat much, I became so weak that I couldn't even stand without leaning against either my husband or my son when I walked. I was getting worse every day and became a little disoriented. I felt afraid and uneasy.
One night, I took three sleeping pills and still was not at all sleepy as I lay in bed. I took another four sleeping pills and felt that my body was very stiff like a piece of wood and I couldn't move, yet my mind was still very clear. I was very scared and thinking that this time I could not be saved. I thought that what was in front of me was only the road to death. I thought about my mom, my husband, and my son. In the face of death, I was scared. I was afraid that I would die and I did not want to die. I experienced an indescribable desire to live and painful feeling of giving up. I begged the Gods and Buddhas that if they could give me another chance to live, I would really cherish it and treat people around me well. I started to work really hard to eat and drink, however, regardless of whether it was food or water, it was hard for me to even swallow. I had to try several times in order to swallow. I realized that all the organs in my body were declining. I picked up a pen and paper and started to write down my feelings and my worries (a goodbye note). I wrote two of them, one to my mom and one to my husband. Due to long-term insomnia, my hand was shaking as I held the pen and each time I could only write a few sentences.
My husband took me to a provincial hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine and found a professor. The professor tried to comfort me and said, “My sister is in her 60s and had suffered from neurasthenia for half of her life. She was cured after taking only one Angong (meaning “to fix the physical functions”) pill. You're still young (I was 41 at the time). One pill of Angong and you should be good.” My husband was worried and repeatedly asked her to prescribe two pills. I was already not very conscious at the time and felt like I was in a dream.
As soon as we got home, my husband took out one of the pills and made me take it. I hoped that the medicine would work so I would be able to sleep, even for just a few minutes...ten minutes would be good! Yet it did not work. My husband bought two more Angong pills, still to no effect. My husband bought soft-shelled turtles and gave me turtle blood and turtle soup, yet my health still didn't improve. I was so weak that I couldn't get out of bed and was groggy all the time. I was in despair.
I put the two copies of the goodbye note in a notebook and told my son. I didn't tell my husband—I was afraid that he would be in despair. My son is relatively introverted. I told him, “If Mom is gone, don't miss me no matter what. If you miss Mom, she is going to suffer even more. All these years you mother has been struggling with disease just so I could raise you. I only lived 'till today for you. If it wasn't for you, perhaps I would have lost all courage and faith a long time ago and wouldn't have lived this long.” My son cried, saying, “Mom, I won't miss you. I'll just think that you went to the most beautiful place...” I started to try not to talk or open my eyes so I could rest and conserve some energy. I wanted to save my last breath and meager strength so I could look at my child one last time.
Falun Gong Gave Me My Second Life
Right at that time, a friend came to visit. She brought a copy of the Falun Gong book, Zhuan Falun, and a set of 12 audiotapes of the Fa lectures. She told me about a few cases of practitioners who were healed and had gotten rid of illnesses by practicing Falun Gong. She also sat right next to me and read Zhuan Falun to me. While she was reading and I was listening, I felt that I was slowly turning in bed as if blown by the wind. After a while, the entire house seemed to be turning slowly and floating. I had a very comfortable feeling. I cried. My desire to live made me believe that this practice could save my life and that I had hope.
Before my friend left, she put an audiotape in my small tape player and put it by my pillow. She told me, “Listen to it with a clear mind and listen day and night, and you will be better.” My desire to live made me listen all the time without missing even just one second. It was truly miraculous. As I listened and listened, I felt that I dozed off for a little bit. I could feel that I was falling asleep, and it was not me passing out. In that split second I fell asleep, I really fell asleep. At that moment, it was as if I was given a pill of reassurance—I really could be saved! Just like that, I listened every day.
After that, I was able to fall asleep for a little while several times a day every day, for longer and longer periods. I also could sleep for a while in the second half of the night. After ten days, I could almost sleep for about an hour during the second half of the night. After a month, I could sleep for the second half of the night and also was able to go to the Falun Gong practice site with my friend and do the exercises. After two months, I was having the best sleep of my entire life. What was also miraculous was that the FUO that I had suffered for more than 20 years disappeared. My body temperature became normal. The illness that I had acquired during the month of confinement—my painful eyes—was also cured and I was able to open my eyes. The digestive system problems had disappeared. I experienced what it was like to not have any illnesses and to have a healthy body for the first time in my life. I felt like I had entered the land of a fairy tale, something hard to describe in words.
The Joy in Practicing Falun Gong
Through studying and reading Zhuan Falun, I realized that, in order to maintain a healthy body, I must start with being a good person. I needed to consider others first in dealing with things, to treat everything with compassion, and not repay evil with evil. At home, I started doing the household chores. It had been difficult for my husband since all the chores had become his responsibility for all these years. At the beginning, he was very skeptical and worried that I would fall ill again. He wouldn't let me do anything. Later, he saw for himself that I was really not sick anymore and he was finally relaxed about my doing chores. He often stood right next to me and watched when I did them, with a big grin on his face.
People at my workplace were shocked when I returned to work in good health. I had transferred to the workplace when my son was four years old, and by that time I already had squinting eyes when everybody first saw me. Now that my eyes were open, everybody was curious and asked about it. Also, I had been a long-term “sick personnel” at my workplace. Back then, for every holiday or Chinese New Year, the labor union where I worked and the administration would count the number of employees that were hospitalized, then buy gifts (four items of various canned fruits and/or fruits), and visit these employees at the hospitals with their department supervisors. I remembered one time, the chairman of the labor union said to me, “Next time we won't have to wonder about you—we'll just count you in right from the beginning.” He meant that I was on the list every time. Now that I was healthy and had returned to work, a lot of people came to inquire. They were all very surprised when they learned that I had regained my health through practicing Falun Gong. Some of them started learning the exercises with me right away. A few of them also started watching the Fa lecture videos with me. A recently divorced co-worker who had been depressed also started watching the videos and doing the exercises with us.
Every morning I did the exercises with others at the practice site. During the day, I felt really good and was not tired or sleepy. One day, the local assistant took us to a relatively bigger practice site to do the exercises. I was told that the TV station was going to videotape us practicing Falun Gong. Afterwards I discovered that scenes of Falun Gong morning practices could often be seen on TV and in the newspapers. There were also interviews of Falun Gong practitioners sharing their experiences of getting rid of illnesses by practicing Falun Gong. I was so happy.
One time, the city I lived in convened a large-scale festival of Chinese sports, and Falun Gong was invited to participate. Everybody went to practice while standing in a formation that reproduced the Falun Gong emblem. Since I felt that my time was very tight as I worked every day, when the assistant asked me to join in the formation, I said I couldn't and thus created a regret of a lifetime. On the day of the opening ceremony, I saw on TV that the news report of the entire festival was focused on Falun Gong. During the parade, Falun Gong was in the most scenes and the longest shots. On the field, the Falun Gong emblem formed by practitioners was repeatedly shown on TV. All the authorities and reporters had high praise for Falun Gong. The next day, all the newspaper headlines showed the shots of Falun Gong practitioners entering the field in the parade and the formation of the emblem. There was also a report more than half a page long of interviews of Falun Gong practitioners sharing their experiences of getting rid of illnesses and keeping fit through practicing Falun Gong. Among those practitioners was the assistant from our practice site (she was a state official). When she started practicing Falun Gong, she was in a wheelchair, suffering from comminuted pelvic and leg fractures with metal plates in her legs. The hospital had already declared that she would never be able to stand again or bend her leg. Yet through practicing Falun Gong, she not only stood up again, but was also able to sit in the lotus position with both legs crossed. I was so excited when I saw all that and also regretted very much that I missed this rare opportunity.
During the Persecution of Falun Gong
In May, June, and July of 1999, police officers often rode motorcycles with sidecars to join and practice with us in the morning at the practice site. I heard that they were sent by the higher ups to learn more about Falun Gong. I thought, “Is there really a need to learn more about Falun Gong? You would benefit tremendously if you just practiced! It is nothing but good for the society, the country, and the family.” I remember one day, one of the police officers said to me, “Falun Gong is really powerful!” He continued while slapping the back of his neck, “The problem with my vertebra disappeared after just a few days.” I told him about my improvements since practicing Falun Gong, and reminded him to report these miraculous effect to his superiors. He kept nodding and promised.
Yet never did I imagine, on the morning of July 20, 1999, that Falun Gong assistants from all regions of the nation would be arrested. Facing an empty practice site, I was stunned. I returned home infinitely puzzled and depressed. I took my thick medical records and went to the provincial committee of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) with a heavy heart and my trust in the government officials of all levels. I was hoping to meet with provincial high ranking officials and tell them about my own experience and heartfelt wishes as an ordinary citizen.
I didn't imagine that police cars, police officers, and brand new passenger buses would show up. They formed walls and surrounded all of us practitioners. They instructed us to board the buses. I thought the buses were going to take us to meet the authorities, but after we got on the buses they headed to a place in the suburbs far away from the city. It seemed like a big field and it was fenced on all sides. It was the hottest time of the summer and we were under direct sunlight and were exposed to the sun for the entire day.
During that day, we told the police officers about the miraculous effects of Falun Gong in getting rid of illnesses and keeping fit, and also the principle of being a good person through practicing Falun Gong. They all agreed with us, said that they were told to do this by their superiors and that they could still let us go home so we should just go home. One of the officers even said that his aunt also practiced Falun Gong and her hepatitis had been cured. He also told me that I should share a car with him to go back to the city that night and he would let me get off once we were in the city. I didn't do as he said because I still wanted to meet the authorities and clarify the truth about Falun Gong. Yet in the evening, we were all sent to each district stadium, transferred to each street, picked up by the workplace, and put on close watch. We were not allowed to go home. When I got to my workplace, my son came to look for me so the division chief let me go. After we got home, I felt as if the sky had fallen and the world had turned upside down. I couldn't stop crying and my son started to cry, too. We hugged each other and cried together. My husband was out of town on a business trip at the time and headed home immediately once he heard the news.
I really did not know that the situation was so serious, to the extent that all the radio stations, TV stations, newspapers, magazines and publications—all the mass media—distorted the truth and framed Falun Gong. It was so overwhelming—like a big storm. I was heartbroken. I didn't understand why the Chinese Communist Party that I had worshipped for most of my life had suddenly become so absurd, unreasonable, and inhuman. It pushed us, people who practiced Falun Gong just to get rid of illnesses and keep fit and merely wanted to be good and healthy people, in opposition to the government and considered us the “enemy.”
The situation became more and more tense. I also became a “celebrity” at work because of it. One time, officers from the district police station came to look for me at work. The factory director and division director were afraid that they were going to arrest me and didn't let them see me. When the factory director and the division director went to see the officers, the factory director walked by me and there was helplessness in his eyes. The division director told me, “Don't leave this room. Don't let them see you.” A few directors from other factories also came to visit me. They were all worried about me. I was the quality inspector in charge of the raw materials and semi-finished products that we bought in. Everybody thought that my line of work provided a lot of opportunity to collect bribes from vendors, yet as a Falun Gong practitioner, I was required to be a good person first and was not supposed to go with the crowd. Thus, I never took any gifts from the vendors and always thought about things from their perspective as well, and never gave them a hard time. At the beginning when I didn't accept their gifts, they didn't understand and were worried. So I told them about my experience in practicing Falun Gong and that the principles of Falun Gong required people to be good. They were very moved. The factory office director often told me that the vendors praised me frequently when they talked to or treated our factory director to meals.
One day during lunch break, I ran into a factory sales employee. He waved me over, pointed at the director of sales, and said, “We went to Hong Kong. In Hong Kong, there are Falun Gong practitioners everywhere. They also gave us Dafa truth-clarification material and CD's.”
One day, I received a phone call from the guard post saying that someone was looking for me at the gate. I went out to see. It was the person in charge of the security division at our branch factory. He had Dafa truth-clarification materials and a booklet in his hand. As he was handing me the materials, he said that his family had received them. He said he also showed the materials to his brother-in-law. His brother-in-law was a police officer. Everybody cared for, understood, and trusted me. I was very touched.
One day, the person in charge of materials at the machine shop told me that she and her husband had gone out for a meal with a friend who was a reporter. During the conversation, the friend said that his supervisors had made it mandatory that all reports should focus on Falun Gong. Every day he went to different hospitals to look for hospitalized patients and asked them to pretend to be Falun Gong practitioners. If they agreed to follow the script prepared in advance to slander Falun Gong, they would be reimbursed for all their expenses while in the hospital.
One day, the factory office director told me she went to the bureau for a conference. The bureau official that was in charge of persecuting Falun Gong said that each workplace had to “transform” all Falun Gong practitioners and not allow any employee to practice Falun Gong. Whoever didn't “transform” had to be reported. The factory office director said, “Isn't it unreasonable to keep people from getting rid of illnesses and keeping fit!” The bureau leader pounded the table and was going to arrest the factory office director then and there. The factory office director said in a low voice, “There's always forms from higher up for you guys to fill out and promise not to practice Falun Gong. I never gave you those forms and just filled them out for you.” She also told me, “You have to practice Falun Gong well. Remember, I witnessed your changes. When I retire, I will practice with you. We're like sisters. If we could have a healthy body when we're old and not to cause any trouble for our kids, then it's priceless.”
The Moment My Conscience Awakened
One day, a fellow practitioner gave me a Falun Gong leaflet. It was about practitioners who went to Beijing to appeal for the right to practice but got arrested, were sent back to where they where from, and were then persecuted. Two of those arrested were local. One of stories was about a young female practitioner being shocked with electric batons by police officers for about four hours. She ended up with a fever and became unconscious. The other case was about two college students being severely beaten, then shocked with electric batons. They were covered with bruises and couldn't walk. Another one was 56-year-old Ms. Chen Zixiu from the Weicheng District, Weifang City, who died in just three days due to severe beatings. When the family saw her body, she had blood on her mouth, broken teeth, swelling in the abdomen area, and her buttocks and legs were dark purple. There was another female practitioner whose mouth was shocked by a police officer with electric batons. She had big blisters all over her mouth, her lips were turned inside out, and her face was mangled...I couldn't continue reading.
My heart was bleeding. How could there be no law and order? Yesterday, all the newspapers and TV programs were singing the praises of and promoting Dafa, today there was blood everywhere. My heart sank into an extremely painful and heavy state. My conscience was telling me that I couldn't allow them to persecute good people, I couldn't allow them to persecute my fellow practitioners, and I couldn't allow them to fool the Chinese people like this. I would let the Chinese people know what was really going on in China right now.
That night, I took my husband's keys to his office behind his back. At that time, he was the manager of the sales department where he worked. I went to the sales department and made many copies of the Dafa truth-clarification leaflet. I put them into envelopes and mailed them out. I swore in my heart that as long as the persecution didn't end, I would not stop doing this. Later I bought my own copier.
Around the Time of the Staged Tiananmen Self-immolation Incident
In 2001, right before the Chinese New Year's eve, my workplace was in a scare. There had been many cases of police officers and community authorities coming to arrest Falun Gong practitioners in broad daylight. Nobody could stop them. They arrested everybody they came for, and there was no negotiation. Before the end of the day, I was the only one who hadn't been arrested. The division director was in my office the entire time and her eyes were full of fear and worry. A younger female co-worker from my office sat right next to me and hugged my arm. The person in charge of the security division at our branch factory also came. The factory director called frequently and asked about me. Even the air seemed to be full of tension. When I got off work and was about to leave, the division director was worried and said, “If the police officers go to your home and try to arrest you, write whatever they want you to. No matter what, don't let them arrest you and avoid immediate loss.” The co-worker from my office and the person in charge of the security division watched me until I disappeared in the distance
I went directly to my husband's company, and we went to buy firecrackers for the new year. As soon as we got home, I saw that a police officer was already waiting for me (my son was home). When the police officer saw me, he said cheerfully, “I really didn't think that in the district under my jurisdiction, there would be a 'member of Falun Gong' like you hiding.” (Because where we live does not match what's on our family registration booklet.) He also threatened us and said, “Make a decision. Whether you want to spend the Chinese New Year at home or in Masanjia Forced Labor Camp. If you want to spend the New Year at home, then write a 'guarantee statement.' Two things: first, you have to promise that you won't go to Beijing to appeal for Falun Gong, not during the New Year or after. Second, you must guarantee that you won't practice Falun Gong again and completely cut off all ties with Falun Gong.” Next, he pointed at my son and said, “See how good your son is. Why do you practice Falun Gong. If you continue practicing, I'll tell you, your son won't even be able to go to college in the future. Aren't you ruining your only child's chances?”
As soon as my son heard this, he responded right away, “If my mom can have good health, I won't blame her even if I can't go to college.” I had told him about my poor health before I began to practice Falun Gong and my improvement afterward. The man still insisted that I write the “guarantee statement.” He said that if I didn't write it, he would arrest me and take me to Masanjia Forced Labor Camp. He said he would get a bonus for doing it. My son got really worried and told the police officer, “You can't arrest my mom or send her to Masanjia Forced Labor Camp. That's a place for bad people and criminals. My mom is not a bad person, nor a criminal. Plus, did you know that 18 female practitioners in Masanjia Labor Camp were stripped naked and thrown into the male criminals' cells and were raped by the male inmates. This has been exposed around the world. I won't let you send my mom to that kind of place!” As soon as the police officer heard this, he stared at my son and paused for quite a while and said, “I won't send your mom to that place, I won't send your mom to that place.” He then opened the door and walked out.
Eight days later, it was the seventh day of the Chinese New Year, the Chinese Central Television Station program reported the staged Tiananmen self-immolation incident that shocked the nation. I suddenly realized that the arrest of Falun Gong practitioners before the New Year and making them write the “guarantee statements” to promise not to go to Beijing to appeal were all to fabricate this incident. It was truly despicable. In our Dafa books, Teacher had told us a long time ago, “Therefore, committing suicide is sinful.” (“Lecture in Sydney”) How would any Falun Gong practitioner dare to commit suicide? This type of deception is immoral. Isn't this deceiving people! Also, when the Chinese regime reported the incident to foreign countries on the fifth day of the New Year, it was reported that five practitioners burned themselves on Tiananmen Square. Yet on the seventh day of the New Year, when the report was broadcast within the nation, it became seven people. There were two more kids added. The lies were to the point of self-deception.
Think about it, everyone, if Falun Gong were really like what the official TV and newspapers reported, who would still practice? Don't Falun Gong practitioners think for themselves? The truth cannot be contained. Now Falun Dafa has spread to more than 100 countries and regions and has received many honors and praise from each country. Isn't this glory for the nation! Isn't this a demonstration and validation of how extraordinary and profound Falun Dafa! Isn't this a very good thing? It would be an honor for the Chinese regime and the Chinese people. Isn't it something to be proud of! If it's truly like how the Chinese regime reported, then Falun Gong practitioners would have been deported from other countries a long time ago. Why can't we just accept this honor instead of trying to slander it? As Chinese, we have all experienced all kinds of political movements, one after another. Who would easily and casually believe something or do something harmful, especially to risk their lives? Isn't this something we should really ponder?
Dafa Practitioners Benefit Social Stability and Harmony
Dafa practitioners are rightfully good and kind people according to the requirements of Dafa, and are very beneficial to the country and the society. My family is a good example—my husband got laid off in 2000 and started a sales company. In the last more than 10 years, we have supported two college graduates, two graduate students. One of them went to the United States to continue his studies.
My husband is the oldest of four siblings. Their parents passed away a long time ago. His younger brother has been sick for many years and is not able to work. His second youngest sister is divorced and got laid off at a young age. The younger sister was also laid off at a young age. Financially, they are not doing well. From middle school to high school and college, we paid for all of their children's tuition and part of their living expenses. Also, we paid for all his brother and sisters' medical expenses and hospitalization costs. Even when their homes were demolished and they were relocated, we provided them with a place to live. I also often bought clothes and commodities for them. Since I have been caring for my husband's siblings, he is also very caring and considerate of my side of the family. Our life together is a very happy one. Think about it, everyone, isn't this the most harmonious, most solid, and most stable foundation of the society, of the country?! If everyone has good health, considers others first, cares for others, and follows the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance, then wouldn't this society and this country be so harmonious, so warm, so happy, and so wonderful? Isn't this something worth cherishing! Isn't this something worth promoting! Why must the facts be distorted, black and white reversed, the people deceived, and hatred promoted?
Again and again, in China, the truth about Falun Dafa is distorted, slandered, and severely and inhumanly persecuted. This has made me see more clearly the truth and the darkness. I acted on my conscience, the gratitude that Dafa had given me my second life, and I went to Beijing and Tiananmen Squre and voiced my heartfelt wishes, as an ordinary Chinese citizen and as a Falun Dafa practitioner. I posted the five big golden characters that's known around the world, “Falun Dafa Is Good!” onto the banisters at several places around the square and at the entrance of Tiananmen Square.
Year after year, day after day, we deliver Dafa truth-clarification materials, booklets, and CD's to thousands and thousands of families, and tell every person with a predestined relationship about the truth of Falun Dafa. We tell them that quitting the Communist Party and its affiliated organizations can save their lives. We do this from the bottom of our hearts and out of our conscience. Our goal is to let all Chinese people know that Dafa is being persecuted and Dafa practitioners are innocent. Our wish is that the Chinese people not be fooled by lies or deceived by illusions. We sincerely hope that every Chinese person who has received Dafa truth-clarification materials will learn the truth of Dafa and know what's happening around him. Moreover, I hope that you cherish these truth-clarification materials because they contain Dafa practitioners' hard work and are the result of living frugally; it contains Dafa practitioners' wholehearted wishes for you. You will not regret it. I sincerely hope that every kind Chinese person will have a beautiful future.
From the Call for Submissions to Commemorate the Twentieth Anniversary of Falun Dafa’s Introduction