Falun Gong


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Falun Gong

(fä-lo͞on go͞ong), also known as Falun Dafa (dä-fä), movement promoting physical and spiritual well-being that became widespread China in the 1990s. Founded in 1992 by Li Hongzhi (1951?–), a former Changchun grain clerk, it combines exercise routines, said to provide focus for the body's energy, with a code of spiritual discipline, intended to foster physical, mental, and spiritual well-being. Falun Gong's practices derive from qigong, traditional physical exercises related to tai chi, and from Buddhist and Taoist meditation techniques and spiritual elements. Practitioners cultivate moral precepts that stress zhen (truthfulness), shan (compassion), and ren (forbearance).

Falun Gong, which spread rapidly throughout China in the last decade of the 20th cent., was viewed as a cult by the Chinese government, which vehemently opposed the movement and condemned it in the media. In 1998, Li fled to the United States. His movement, however, remained strong in China and gained adherents through proselytization in the United States and other nations. Chinese members staged protests against government persecution, and in Apr., 1999, when the movement claimed to have roughly 70 million members in China, some 10,000 adherents gathered in a peaceful, silent protest outside Zhongnanhai, the large government and Communist party compound in Beijing. Now regarding the movement as threat to party rule, China outlawed it and arrested and imprisoned members. There also were and continue to be reports of the torture and killing of adherents; some 2,000 persons are believed to have died as a result of the persecution of the group. The systematic suppression of the Falun Gong in China remains a government policy.

Bibliography

See Li Hongzhi, Zhuan Falun (tr. 2000); I. Adams et al., ed., Power of the Wheel: The Falun Gong Revolution (2000); D. Schechter, Falun Gong's Challenge to China (2000); S. Spiegel, Dangerous Meditation: China's Campaign against Falungong (2002); M. H. Chang, Falun Gong: The End of Days (2004); D. Ownby, Falun Gong and the Future of China (2008).

References in periodicals archive ?
Penny also notes the ways that Western ideas have shaped the beliefs and presentations of Falun Gong, and how Li's exposure to American culture may have facilitated this.
In 2004, he started to work with other artists who practise Falun Gong to create this exhibition.
More will be said on the matter of gong and qi below, but here we must take notice of the significance of Li's ever-growing reference to and deployment of overtly religious language and symbolism in the early years of Falun Gong, to the fate of the movement in mainland China.
She called the show "so heavily laden with Falun Gong messages as to negate any pleasure the dancing and singing might have afforded.
The doing-something conundrum was even more pronounced in the sole superpower, where Falun Gong defenders became thinner still.
According to the center, Falun Gong is practiced ''freely'' in more than 70 countries.
This began after a demonstration on April 25, t999, that saw 10,000 peaceful and silent Falun Gong practitioners surround Zhongnanhai (the seat of the Central Committee next to the Forbidden City) demanding state recognition and registration as a civic organization.
En este sentido, la afirmacion de Albert Keidel de que la represion a Falun Gong "podria resolverse si dejaran de organizar a sus miembros en manifestaciones que llaman al cambio radical del gobierno" es calumniosa y ofende a las victimas de algo mas que una simple represion.
For nine years the Falun Gong spiritual group has suffered tremendously at the hands of the communist dictatorship.
PRACTITIONERS of the Chinese ritual Falun Gong held a protest in Huddersfield at the weekend in a bid to put a stop to the torture of fellow practitioners in China.
Witnessing History is Zheng's own words, offered in testimony of the ordeal she endured and that thousands of other Falun Gong practitioners continue to suffer for their faith, and a necessarily harsh assault on a nation that does not respect civil rights or freedom of religion.