Falun Gong s Challenge to China

Author: Danny Schechter
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
ISBN: 1888451270
Release Date: 2001
Genre: History

Schechter's groundbreaking exploration of the Falun Gong crisis in China remains the only book-length investigative report on the subject. The New York Times recently described Schechter's book as a 'persuasive analysis of this strange and still unfolding story', and the Village Voice says that 'Schechter's answers are a fiery condemnation of China's government, complete with first-person reports from imprisoned Falun Gong members, propoganda reports, and writings by exiled Falun Gong leader Li Hongzhi'.

Falun Gong in the United States

Author: Noah Porter
Publisher: Universal-Publishers
ISBN: 1581121903
Release Date: 2003
Genre: Body, Mind & Spirit

Falun Gong, also known as Falun Dafa, has been described in many ways. It has been called qigong, one of many schools of physical exercises that aim at improving health and developing supernatural abilities. Scholars and mainstream media have referred it to as a spiritual movement or religion, although practitioners claim it is not a religion. It has been called a cult, in the pejorative sense rather than in a sociological context, by the Chinese government and by some Western critics. In the writings of Li Hongzhi, the founder of Falun Gong, it is referred to in different ways, though primarily as a cultivation practice. The question of how to define Falun Gong is not just an academic issue; the use of the cult label has been used to justify the persecution of practitioners in China. To a limited degree, the Chinese Government is able to extend the persecution overseas. How society defines Falun Gong has implications for action on the level of policy, as well as the shaping of social, cultural, and personal attitudes. This research project addresses what Falun Gong is through ethnography. Research methods included participant-observation, semi-structured ethnographic interviews (both in-person and on-line), and content analysis of text and visual data from Falun Gong books, pamphlets, and websites. Research sites included Tampa, Washington D.C., and cyberspace. In order to keep my research relevant to the issues and concerns of the Falun Gong community, I was in regular contact with the Tampa practitioners, keeping them abreast of my progress and asking for their input. My findings are contrary to the allegations made by the Chinese Government and Western anti-cultists in many ways. Practitioners are not encouraged to rely on Western medicine, but are not prohibited from using it. Child practitioners are not put at risk. Their organizational structure is very loose. Finally, the Internet has played a vital role in Falun Gong's growth and continuation after the crackdown.

Handbook of Religion and the Authority of Science

Author: James R. Lewis
Publisher: BRILL
ISBN: 9789004187917
Release Date: 2010-11-19
Genre: Religion

The present collection examines the many different ways in which religions appeal to the authority of science. The result is a wide-ranging and uniquely compelling study of how religions adapt their message to the challenges of the contemporary world.

Falun Gong and the Future of China

Author: David Ownby
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780199887019
Release Date: 2008-04-16
Genre: Religion

On April 25, 1999, ten thousand Falun Gong practitioners gathered outside Zhongnanhai, the guarded compound where China's highest leaders live and work, in a day-long peaceful protest of police brutality against fellow practitioners in the neighboring city of Tianjin. Stunned and surprised, China's leaders launched a campaign of brutal suppression against the group which continues to this day. This book, written by a leading scholar of the history of this Chinese popular religion, is the first to offer a full explanation of what Falun Gong is and where it came from, placing the group in the broader context of the modern history of Chinese religion as well as the particular context of post-Mao China. Falun Gong began as a form of qigong, a general name describing physical and mental disciplines based loosely on traditional Chinese medical and spiritual practices. Qigong was "invented" in the 1950s by members of the Chinese medical establishment who were worried that China's traditional healing arts would be lost as China modeled its new socialist health care system on Western biomedicine. In the late 1970s, Chinese scientists "discovered" that qi possessed genuine scientific qualities, which allowed qigong to become part of China's drive for modernization. With the support of China's leadership, qigong became hugely popular in the 1980s and 1990s, as charismatic qigongqigong boom, the first genuine mass movement in the history of the People's Republic. Falun Gong founder Li Hongzhi started his own school of qigong in 1992, claiming that the larger movement had become corrupted by money and magic tricks. Li was welcomed into the qigong world and quickly built a nationwide following of several million practitioners, but ran afoul of China's authorities and relocated to the United States in 1995. In his absence, followers in China began to organize peaceful protests of perceived media slights of Falun Gong, which increased from the mid-'90s onward as China's leaders began to realize that they had created, in the qigong boom, a mass movement with religious and nationalistic undertones, a potential threat to their legitimacy and control. Based on fieldwork among Chinese Falun Gong practitioners in North America and on close examinations of Li Hongzhi's writings, this volume offers an inside look at the movement's history in Chinese popular religion.

Falun Gong

Author: James R. Lewis
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9781108698764
Release Date: 2018-05-03
Genre: Religion

Falun Gong, founded by Li Hongzhi in 1992, attracted international attention in 1999 after staging a demonstration outside government offices in Beijing. It was subsequently banned. Followers then created a number of media outlets outside China focused on protesting the PRC's attack on the 'human rights' of practitioners. This volume focuses on Falun Gong and violence. Though the author notes accusations of how Chinese authorities have abused and tortured practitioners, the volume will focus on Li Hongzhi's teachings about 'spiritual warfare', and how these teachings have motivated practitioners to deliberately seek brutalization and martyrdom.

State and Society in 21st Century China

Author: Peter Hays Gries
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 9781134321278
Release Date: 2004-08-02
Genre: History

Written by a team of leading China scholars, this book explores the dynamics of state power and legitimation in twenty-first century China, and the implications of changing state-society relations for the future viability of the People's Republic. Key subjects covered include: the legitimacy of the Communist Party state-society relations ethnic and religious resistance rural and urban contention nationalism popular and youth culture prospects for democracy.

Breaking the Real Axis of Evil

Author: Mark Palmer
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
ISBN: 0742532550
Release Date: 2005-01-01
Genre: Political Science

With the removal of not only Saddam Hussein but also Jean-Betrand Aristide, as well as the ongoing civil war against Charles Taylor in Liberia, much has changed in the world of dictators since the first publication of this work less than a year ago. Drawing on his 25 years of extensive diplomatic experience, Ambassador Palmer asks us to embrace a bold vision of a world made safe by democracy. This is the story of the remaining dictators, the strategy and tactics to oust them, and the need to empower the people of every nation to control their own destinies.

Religion and International Relations Theory

Author: Jack Snyder
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 9780231526913
Release Date: 2011-03-31
Genre: Political Science

Religious concerns stand at the center of international politics, yet key paradigms in international relations, namely realism, liberalism, and constructivism, barely consider religion in their analysis of political subjects. The essays in this collection rectify this. Authored by leading scholars, they introduce models that integrate religion into the study of international politics and connect religion to a rising form of populist politics in the developing world. Contributors identify religion as pervasive and distinctive, forcing a reframing of international relations theory that reinterprets traditional paradigms. One essay draws on both realism and constructivism in the examination of religious discourse and transnational networks. Another positions secularism not as the opposite of religion but as a comparable type of worldview drawing on and competing with religious ideas. With the secular state's perceived failure to address popular needs, religion has become a banner for movements that demand a more responsive government. The contributors to this volume recognize this trend and propose structural and theoretical innovations for future advances in the discipline.

God in Chinatown

Author: Kenneth J. Guest
Publisher: NYU Press
ISBN: 9780814732762
Release Date: 2003-08-01
Genre: Religion

God in Chinatown is a path breaking study of the largest contemporary wave of new immigrants to Chinatown. Since the 1980s, tens of thousands of mostly rural Chinese have migrated from Fuzhou, on China’s southeastern coast, to New York’s Chinatown. Like the Cantonese who comprised the previous wave of migrants, the Fuzhou have brought with them their religious beliefs, practices, and local deities. In recent years these immigrants have established numerous specifically Fuzhounese religious communities, ranging from Buddhist, Daoist, and Chinese popular religion to Protestant and Catholic Christianity. This ethnographic study examines the central role of these religious communities in the immigrant incorporation process in Chinatown’s highly stratified ethnic enclave, as well as the transnational networks established between religious communities in New York and China. The author’s knowledge of Chinese coupled with his extensive fieldwork in both China and New York enable him to illuminate how these networks transmit religious and social dynamics to the United States, as well as how these new American institutions influence religious and social relations in the religious revival sweeping southeastern China. God in Chinatown is the first study to bring to light religion's significant role in the Fuzhounese immigrants’ dramatic transformation of the face of New York’s Chinatown.

Breathing Spaces

Author: Nancy N. Chen
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 9780231502214
Release Date: 2003-06-04
Genre: Social Science

The charismatic form of healing called qigong, based on meditative breathing exercises, has achieved enormous popularity in China during the last two decades. Qigong served a critical social organizational function, as practitioners formed new informal networks, sometimes on an international scale, at a time when China was shifting from state-subsidized medical care to for-profit market medicine. The emergence of new psychological states deemed to be deviant led the Chinese state to "medicalize" certain forms while championing scientific versions of qigong. By contrast, qigong continues to be promoted outside China as a traditional healing practice. Breathing Spaces brings to life the narratives of numerous practitioners, healers, psychiatric patients, doctors, and bureaucrats, revealing the varied and often dramatic ways they cope with market reform and social changes in China.

The More You Watch the Less You Know

Author: Danny Schechter
Publisher: Seven Stories Press
ISBN: 9781609802639
Release Date: 2011-01-04
Genre: Social Science

A candid insider's tale of how the media really works and why it doesn't work the way it should, The More You Watch, The Less You Know has emerged as a key catalyst in the debate on media reform. The More You Watch, The Less You Know recounts Schechter's media adventures, from when he was "Danny Schechter the News Dissector" on Boston's WBCN radio, to his stints as a producer at ABC's 20/20 and CNN, to his personal odyssey chronicling the anti-Apartheid revolution in South Africa, to his development of innovative programming like South Africa Now and Rights & Wrongs as an independent producer. In this age of telecommunications bills and media mergers, The More You Watch, The Less You Know is an insider’s passionate plea for freedom of the (electronic) press.

Essentials for Further Advancement

Author: Li Hongzhi
Publisher: Fair Winds
ISBN: 1610595599
Release Date: 2001-05-01
Genre: Self-Help

A fascinating collection of letters and articles written by Li Hongzhi between 1995 and 1999, Essentials for Further Advancement is an essential reference for every Falun Gong practitioner. Li Hongzhi's goal in this volume is to reflect on the impact and distinctiveness of Falun Gong in the modern world. He shares his thoughts on the effects of Falun Gong on the People's Republic of China, how Falun Gong principles can be applied to real-life situations, and how practitioners should conducts themselves in daily life. In short, Essentials for Further Advancements is a fascinating reflection of the current status and the applications of Falun Gong at the dawn of a new millennium.

Falun Gong

Author: Maria Hsia Chang
Publisher: Yale University Press
ISBN: 9780300133172
Release Date: 2008-10-01
Genre: Political Science

The world first took notice of a religious group called Falun Gong on April 25, 1999, when more than 10,000 of its followers protested before the Chinese Communist headquarters in Beijing. Falun Gong investigates events in the wake of the demonstration: Beijing’s condemnation of the group as a Western, anti-Chinese force and doomsday cult, the sect’s continued defiance, and the nationwide campaign that resulted in the incarceration and torture of many Falun Gong faithful. Maria Hsia Chang discusses the Falun Gong’s beliefs, including their ideas on cosmology, humanity’s origin, karma, reincarnation, UFOs, and the coming apocalypse. She balances an account of the Chinese government’s case against the sect with an evaluation of the credibility of those accusations. Describing China’s long history of secret societies that initiated powerful uprisings and sometimes overthrew dynasties, she explains the Chinese government’s brutal treatment of the sect. And she concludes with a chronicle of the ongoing persecution of religious groups in China—of which Falun Gong is only one of many—and the social conditions that breed the popular discontent and alienation that spawn religious millenarianism.

News Dissector

Author: Danny Schechter
Publisher: Akashic Books
ISBN: UOM:39015050820102
Release Date: 2001
Genre: Education

Schechter's writing on politics, human rights and the media spanning four decades of activism and reporting: from Vietnam and South Africa to the American Civil rights movement and the hazards of the global corporate media. An important book by one of the few working journalists to emerge from the alternative media of the 60s and 70s with his politics and principals intact.