Brief Encounter at Gustav Adolf’s Square

Today is the first of October 2001, China’s National Day. We are about 15 practitioners in Gothenburg, Sweden, holding a peaceful rally in protest against the persecution of Falun Gong in China. At Gustav Adolf’s Square, located in the city center, we have an exhibition with many pictures of the victims of the persecution. We have also hung up several long banners.

Several other practitioners and I walk around and collect names for the petition from people who are standing and waiting for the bus that will take them home after work. During the last few days I have been reflecting quite a bit about why I could not feel a true closeness to the practitioners in China who are imprisoned.

When I was in Greece recently on a Hongfa trip, I thought that the distance had shrunken and I became closer to the practitioners in China. Why, I do not know. Perhaps it is because the world shrinks when you are traveling around.

Here in Europe we also have many barriers, which hinder us practitioners from reaching each other unconditionally; language and cultural barriers, traditions, etc.

I stand there with my collection of names at Gustav Adolf’s Square in Gothenburg when a young man comes up to me. He points at a large picture of the young student, Zhao Ming, who is enrolled at the Trinity College Department of Computer Science, in Dublin Ireland.

“This is my classmate”, he says with an Irish accent. “We are studying at the same course together in Dublin. It is terrible what is happening to Zhao Ming. It’s a disgrace, it’s really a disgrace”.

He tells how the father of one of his friends in Dublin who also has an official position in the city had tried to appeal to the Chinese regime to release Zhao Ming and even other imprisoned Falun Gong practitioners. “There are many people in Dublin who are engaged in the effort to release Zhao Ming”, he says.

I feel how my heart aches when I think about how people right now are being tortured for spreading the truth and it could have been one of us who was being subjected to the same thing which Zhao is experiencing at this moment.

Suddenly, the world shrinks again and this brief encounter with Zhao Ming’s classmate leads my heart even closer to the practitioners in China.

I am thankful for this meeting which gave me a deeper insight into how all of us practitioners in Europe, China and the rest of the world are actually part of the same body.

It gives me energy to work even harder to spread the truth about the persecution and so that Zhao Ming and other practitioners will be released as soon as possible.

October 11 2001

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