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Falun Gong

Jarhyn

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In the discussions of problematic religions often we see discussions of western "new religious movements": Mormonism, Scientology.

But little attention gets paid by the likes of us towards other movements.

One such movement is the movement of Falun Gong.

To understand what Falun Gong is, first you must know what Qigong is.


Falun Gong is then a religious treatment of Qigong touted by Li Hongzhi.

From a number of lectures, this individual assembled a holy book

But moreover, there are a stunning number of reports that this cult is as bad or worse than Scientology or Mormonism, using family capture and fear techniques, and hints towards suicide rituals.


Whenever confronted, I am used to seeing a number of rabid supporters jump up in defense of it similar to scientology, generally on Reddit, but they occasionally try to advertise in a number of different venues.

Has anyone else seen or had experience with them?
 

Politesse

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I have heard some things, but it's also important to treat with mild to considerable caution "common knowledge" about movements that the People's Republic has declared enemies of the state. They're good at painting and disseminating a certain kind of picture of their dissidents. In short, what you hear from a supporter is likely to be self serving evangelism, but critiques are no more trustworthy. I went to one of Shen Yun's performances a few years back (the ballet group that Falun Dafa sponsors) and greatly enjoyed the performance, but there was quite a lot of proselytizing going on, and it is clear enough that the content of that message is rigidly controlled by the central authority of the movement.
 

Jarhyn

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I have heard some things, but it's also important to treat with mild to considerable caution "common knowledge" about movements that the People's Republic has declared enemies of the state. They're good at painting and disseminating a certain kind of picture of their dissidents. In short, what you hear from a supporter is likely to be self serving evangelism, but critiques are no more trustworthy. I went to one of Shen Yun's performances a few years back (the ballet group that Falun Dafa sponsors) and greatly enjoyed the performance, but there was quite a lot of proselytizing going on, and it is clear enough that the content of that message is rigidly controlled by the central authority of the movement.
It is exactly this, generally, that I caution around. I recognize that the CCP is committing several genocides, ethnocides, and theocides at this very moment.

Strangely enough, the movement uses the theocide as a shield against the recognition of the rigid control the founder has over the cult.

Whenever the hellfire and damnation and borderline suicide cult teachings are exposed, the first fallback is "but CCP genocide/theocide!" As if that at all changes the fact that Li is a Chinese version of L. Ron Hubbard.
 

Politesse

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I have heard some things, but it's also important to treat with mild to considerable caution "common knowledge" about movements that the People's Republic has declared enemies of the state. They're good at painting and disseminating a certain kind of picture of their dissidents. In short, what you hear from a supporter is likely to be self serving evangelism, but critiques are no more trustworthy. I went to one of Shen Yun's performances a few years back (the ballet group that Falun Dafa sponsors) and greatly enjoyed the performance, but there was quite a lot of proselytizing going on, and it is clear enough that the content of that message is rigidly controlled by the central authority of the movement.
It is exactly this, generally, that I caution around. I recognize that the CCP is committing several genocides, ethnocides, and theocides at this very moment.

Strangely enough, the movement uses the theocide as a shield against the recognition of the rigid control the founder has over the cult.

Whenever the hellfire and damnation and borderline suicide cult teachings are exposed, the first fallback is "but CCP genocide/theocide!" As if that at all changes the fact that Li is a Chinese version of L. Ron Hubbard.
Not so strange. Oppression breeds violence, even imitation. This is true more often than it is not.

But, it makes it quite difficult to sort fact from fiction, when both "sides" of a dispute liberally publish misinformation about the other. The Chinese government regards Falun Dafa as one of the "Five Poisons" that threaten the state, and are willing to invest unfathomable amounts of money to take it down. This has given Li Hongzi a ready ear and a great deal of sympathy in the countries where he has sought refuge in exile. It's very likely that he has taken advantage of this largesse to engage in higly questionable practices, financial, personal, and social. But how do you sort fact from fiction, when there is more fiction than fact in the press? I certainly don't appreciate the far-right wing conspiracies that Master Li has spread widely among the Chinese communities in my own country, or their close association with Freedom House during the Trump years. On the other hand, these offenses pale in comparison to the brutal treatment they have received in their home country; I can see where seeing thousands tortured and killed for choosing the wrong evening exercises would make the group more insular and paranoid than it would be otherwise.
 
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steve_bank

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I belive there is freedom of relgion in China as long as itis not a polical thret to the leadership.

In our enlightened American system groups obviously harmful are allowed to exist as long as they are technically within established law.

Over here you can be against govt or anything else and not be in trouble unless yiu overl propose the short term violent overthrow of government.

Scientology is a dangerous cult. It is a 1984 kind of surveillance. Leave the cult and speak out and you will be gone after by a 'hit squads' that attacks and harasses your life. Some countries have banned it.

A worse case example was the attempt by the Rajneeshe cult to take over local government in 80s Oregon.

There is the Mormon polygamist offshoot. Well documented. Female teens handed over to other men as one of many wives. Trying tp r escape is dangerous. It is all well known but under freedom of religion local, state. and federal law enforcemnt doe not press them.


China favors socical and civil stability over our near unrestricted freedom of religion and speech. Time will tell if our system works in the long run.
 
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