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This book is printed on demand. Seller Inventory I Condition: Brand New. In Stock. Seller Inventory x Book Description Yale University Press. Seller Inventory ING Chang Maria Hsia. Publisher: Yale University Press , This specific ISBN edition is currently not available. View all copies of this ISBN edition:. Synopsis About this title The world first took notice of a religious group called Falun Gong on April 25, , when more than 10, of its followers protested before the Chinese Communist headquarters in Beijing.

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Seller Image. New Paperback or Softback Quantity Available: New Paperback Quantity Available: 2. Revaluation Books Exeter, United Kingdom. Falun Gong is distinct from other qigong schools in that its teachings cover a wide range of spiritual and metaphysical topics, placing emphasis on morality and virtue and elaborating a complete cosmology. Falun Gong aspires to enable the practitioner to ascend spiritually through moral rectitude and the practice of a set of exercises and meditation. The nature of the cosmos doesn't change, and it is the only standard for determining who's good and who's bad.

Million Minutes to end the Persecution of Falun Gong

So to be a cultivator you have to take the nature of the cosmos as your guide for improving yourself. Practice of Falun Gong consists of two features: performance of the exercises, and the refinement of one's xinxing moral character, temperament. In Falun Gong's central text, Li states that xinxing "includes virtue which is a type of matter , it includes forbearance, it includes awakening to things, it includes giving up things—giving up all the desires and all the attachments that are found in an ordinary person—and you also have to endure hardship, to name just a few things.

A person's ratio of karma to virtue is said to determine his or her fortunes in this life or the next. While virtue engenders good fortune and enables spiritual transformation, an accumulation of karma results in suffering, illness, and alienation from the nature of the universe. Falun Gong's teachings posit that human beings are originally and innately good—even divine—but that they descended into a realm of delusion and suffering after developing selfishness and accruing karma.

Traditional Chinese cultural thought and modernity are two focuses of Li Hongzhi's teachings.


Falun Gong echoes traditional Chinese beliefs that humans are connected to the universe through mind and body, and Li seeks to challenge "conventional mentalities", concerning the nature and genesis of the universe, time-space, and the human body. The leader of Falun Gong believes aliens walk the Earth and he has reportedly said he can walk through walls and make himself invisible. Li Hongzhi says that he is a being from from a higher level who has come to help humankind from the destruction it could face as the result of rampant evil.

In addition to its moral philosophy, Falun Gong consists of four standing exercises and one sitting meditation. The exercises are regarded as secondary to moral elevation, though is still an essential component of Falun Gong cultivation practice. The first exercises, called "Buddha Stretching a Thousand Arms", are intended to facilitate the free flow of energy through the body and open up the meridians. The second exercise, "Falun Standing Stance", involves holding four static poses—each of which resembles holding a wheel—for an extended period.

The objective of this exercise is to "enhances wisdom, increases strength, raises a person's level, and strengthens divine powers". The third, "Penetrating the Cosmic Extremes", involves three sets of movements, which aim to enable the expulsion of bad energy e. Through practice of this exercise, the practitioner aspires to cleanse and purify the body. The fourth exercise, "Falun Cosmic Orbit", seeks to circulate energy freely throughout the body. Unlike the first through fourth exercises, the fifth exercise is performed in the seated lotus position.

Called "Reinforcing Supernatural Powers", it is a meditation intended to be maintained as long as possible.

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  • Falun Gong exercises can be practiced individually or in group settings, and can be performed for varying lengths of time in accordance with the needs and abilities of the individual practitioner. A pilot study involving genomic profiling of six Falun Dafa practitioners indicated that, "changes in gene expression of [Falun Gong] practitioners in contrast to normal healthy controls were characterized by enhanced immunity, downregulation of cellular metabolism, and alteration of apoptotic genes in favor of a rapid resolution of inflammation.

    In addition to the attainment of physical health, many Buddhist and Daoist meditation systems aspire to transform the physical body and cultivate a variety of supernatural capabilities shentong , such as telepathy and divine sight. These include—but are not limited to—precognition, clairaudience, telepathy, and divine sight via the opening of the third eye or celestial eye. However, Falun Gong stresses that these powers can be developed only as a result of moral practice, and should not be pursued or casually displayed.

    Falun Gong differentiates itself from Buddhist monastic traditions in that it places great importance on participation in the secular world. Falun Gong practitioners are required to maintain regular jobs and family lives, to observe the laws of their respective governments, and are instructed not to distance themselves from society. An exception is made for Buddhist monks and nuns, who are permitted to continue a monastic lifestyle while practicing Falun Gong.

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    As part of its emphasis on ethical behavior, Falun Gong's teachings prescribe a strict personal morality for practitioners. They are expected to act truthfully, do good deeds, and conduct themselves with patience and forbearance when encountering difficulties. For instance, Li stipulates that a practitioner of Falun Gong must "not hit back when attacked, not talk back when insulted. In addition to these things, practitioners of Falun Gong must abandon a variety of worldly attachments and desires. Li's teachings repeatedly emphasize the emptiness of material pursuits; although practitioners of Falun Gong are not encouraged to leave their jobs or eschew money, they are expected to give up the psychological attachments to these things.

    Falun Gong's cosmology includes the belief that different ethnicities each have a correspondence to their own heavens, and that individuals of mixed race lose some aspect of this connection. Falun Gong doctrine counsels against participation in political or social issues. According to Hu Ping, "Falun Gong deals only with purifying the individual through exercise, and does not touch on social or national concerns. It has not suggested or even intimated a model for social change. Many religions The first book of Falun Gong teachings was published in April Called China Falun Gong , or simply Falun Gong , it is an introductory text that discusses qigong , Falun Gong's relationship to Buddhism, the principles of cultivation practice and the improvement of moral character xinxing.

    The book also provides illustrations and explanations of the exercises and meditation. The main body of teachings is articulated in the book Zhuan Falun , published in Chinese in January The book is divided into nine "lectures", and was based on edited transcriptions of the talks Li gave throughout China in the preceding three years. The Falun Gong teachings use numerous untranslated Chinese religious and philosophical terms, and make frequent allusion to characters and incidents in Chinese folk literature and concepts drawn from Chinese popular religion.

    This, coupled with the literal translation style of the texts, which imitate the colloquial style of Li's speeches, can make Falun Gong scriptures difficult to approach for Westerners. The main symbol of the practice is the Falun Dharma wheel, or Dharmacakra in Sanskrit. In Buddhism, the Dharmacakra represents the completeness of the doctrine. To "turn the wheel of dharma" Zhuan Falun means to preach the Buddhist doctrine, and is the title of Falun Gong's main text. Some scholars, such as Maria Hsia Chang and Susan Palmer, have described Li's rhetoric about the "Fa rectification" and providing salvation "in the final period of the Last Havoc", as apocalyptic.

    Falun Gong is a multifaceted discipline that means different things to different people, ranging from a set of physical exercises for the attainment of better health and a praxis of self-transformation, to a moral philosophy and a new knowledge system. In the cultural context of China, Falun Gong is generally described either as a system of qigong, or a type of "cultivation practice" xiulian , a process by which an individual seeks spiritual perfection, often through both physical and moral conditioning.

    Varieties of cultivation practice are found throughout Chinese history, spanning Buddhist, Daoist and Confucian traditions. Cultivation systems have been a feature of Chinese life for at least 2, years. In the West, Falun Gong is frequently classified as a religion on the basis of its theological and moral teachings, [81] its concerns with spiritual cultivation and transformation, and its extensive body of scripture. This rejection reflects the relatively narrow definition of "religion" zongjiao in contemporary China.

    According to David Ownby, religion in China has been defined since to refer to "world-historical faiths" that have "well-developed institutions, clergy, and textual traditions"—namely, Buddhism, Daoism, Islam, Protestantism and Catholicism. Moreover, if Falun Gong had described itself as a religion in China, it likely would have invited immediate suppression.

    Falun Gong : the end of days - Ghent University Library

    Although it is often referred to as such in journalistic literature, Falun Gong does not satisfy the definition of a "sect" or "cult. Although Falun Gong draws on both Buddhist and Daoist ideas and terminology, it claims no direct relationship or lineage connection to these religions.

    As a matter of doctrinal significance, Falun Gong is intended to be "formless", having little to no material or formal organization. Practitioners of Falun Gong cannot collect money or charge fees, conduct healings, or teach or interpret doctrine for others. Spiritual authority is vested exclusively in the teachings of founder Li Hongzhi. Volunteer "assistants" or "contact persons" do not hold authority over other practitioners, regardless of how long they have practiced Falun Gong. Falun Gong practitioners have little to no contact with Li, except through the study of his teachings.

    To the extent that organization is achieved in Falun Gong, it is accomplished through a global, networked, and largely virtual online community. In particular, electronic communications, email lists and a collection of websites are the primary means of coordinating activities and disseminating Li Hongzhi's teachings. Outside Mainland China, a network of volunteer 'contact persons', regional Falun Dafa Associations and university clubs exist in approximately 80 countries.

    The exercise and meditation sessions are described as informal groups of practitioners who gather in public parks—usually in the morning—for one to two hours. In , the Beijing-based Falun Dafa Research Society was accepted as a branch of the state-run China Qigong Research Society CQRS , which oversaw the administration of the country's various qigong schools, and sponsored activities and seminars.

    As per the requirements of the CQRS, Falun Gong was organized into a nationwide network of assistance centers, "main stations", "branches", "guidance stations", and local practice sites, mirroring the structure of the qigong society or even of the Communist Party itself. The Falun Dafa Research Society provided advice to students on meditation techniques, translation services, and coordination for the practice nationwide. Following its departure from the CQRS in , Falun Gong came under increased scrutiny from authorities and responded by adopting a more decentralized and loose organizational structure. Following the persecution of Falun Gong in , Chinese authorities sought to portray Falun Gong as a hierarchical and well-funded organization. James Tong writes that it was in the government's interest to portray Falun Gong as highly organized in order to justify its repression of the group: "The more organized the Falun Gong could be shown to be, then the more justified the regime's repression in the name of social order was.

    Prior to July , official estimates placed the number of Falun Gong practitioners at 70 million nationwide, rivaling membership in the Communist Party.

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    Demographic surveys conducted in China in found a population that was mostly female and elderly. Falun Gong is practiced by tens, and possibly hundreds of thousands outside China, [12] with the largest communities found in Taiwan and North American cities with large Chinese populations, such as New York and Toronto. The average age was approximately The most commonly reported reasons for being attracted to Falun Gong were intellectual content, cultivation exercises, and health benefits.

    According to Richard Madsen [ who? From their point of view, "Falun Dafa is knowledge rather than religion, a new form of science rather than faith". Li was recognized as a qigong master, and was authorized to teach his practice nationwide.