My name is Chris Cominos. I am a practitioner of Greek descent who grew up in Australia. I attended the peaceful appeal in Tiananmen Square on November 20 representing both Greece and Australia.
Immediately after being expelled from China I came to Greece to tell the Greek people about Falun Dafa and about the horrific persecution that Chinese people who practise Falun Dafa are forced to endure. Falun Dafa is not well known in Greece and the majority of people here have not even heard of Qigong or Tai Chi before. The Greek culture and religion is very dominant in Greece and people are very suspicious of anything that might sound like it belongs to a foreign spiritual or religious practice. I have heard many people be critical of Buddhism and foreigners coming here to spread it. The reaction I have had from many people when telling them about Falun Dafa is that they assume that if it comes from China, it must also be Buddhism. Fortunately most people I have continued to speak with have been open to what I have told them and also accepted a flyer to read.
So far I have had some very amazing "pre-destined" encounters with many people. I will try and write about some of these experiences in the future.
I wrote the following experience sharing about a week ago:
I am currently in Thessaloniki which is the second largest city in Greece.
Vasilis Zoupounidis who is the only Greek practitioner living permanently in Greece (together with his wife and daughter - also practitioners ) and I have been actively trying to get some interest from the media in covering the persecution of Falun Dafa and the story of the event at Tiananmen Square which I attended last month.
Today we finally managed to get an interview with one of the three largest TV stations in Greece (STAR) which is also shown throughout Europe.
We gave them the video footage of the 20th Nov. incident together with other footage of the persecution. We have been told that this footage together with the filmed interview of me and Vasilios will be shown on the main news.
We have expressed to a reporter that our main aim is to inform the government and the people of Greece about what is happening in China to Falun Dafa practitioners and about what Falun Dafa really is about.
While in Thesaloniki we attended a large conference held every two years for Greeks that live abroad. This conference is attended by the Greek Prime Minister, the heads of the Greek Orthodox Church, the media and as well by other prominent business and government people. We were able to meet many people who will be able to assist us with the truth clarifying work that we are doing.
While in Australia I borrowed a lap top computer from a practitioner in Sydney which has been very useful in clarifying the truth to people by being able to carry it with me everywhere and show people the video of the Tiananmen incident as well as other truth clarifying vcds.
The following is about what I think was a pre-destined meeting I had with some Chinese people in Athens recently:
I came across a group of mainland Chinese people in Athens airport when I was on my way to Thessaloniki. I had just taken off my coat to display the yellow Falun Dafa jumper I was wearing when I happened to walk right through this group of Chinese people.
They immediately noticed me and started to point saying "Falun Gong! Falun Gong! They looked at me with a mixture of shock, anger and disgust. I said hello to them and said yes "Falun Gong, Falun Dafa, Falun Dafa is good" They looked at me with astonishment, like they couldn't believe their eyes or ears.
I walked up to them to speak to them, but they looked disinterested and wanted to get away from me. I happened to have a Chinese Falun Dafa newspaper in my pocket I got from Sydney that had photos of the Tiananmen incident on the front page and so I proceeded to offer it to them. They each shook their heads and refused to accept it while saying a number of things in Chinese. One man seemed to be able to speak English and said to me that the lady next to him thought that I have mental problems and that I must be mad.
I felt a little uneasy by this point as I had a whole group of people almost snarling at me, and my human side wanted to walk away from them. With this thought that I had, I quickly realised how these people had their minds poisoned by all the propaganda in China. I couldn't walk away and let them continue thinking the way they did about Dafa, so I continued calmly to speak to the man who spoke English and told him to not believe all the lies that they have heard in China about Falun Dafa. I again offered the man the newspaper asking him to read it so that he can find out the truth. He again refused and said with much emphasis "What truth!!!"
I calmly continued to tell him that there are many thousands of people being persecuted in China for simply practising Falun Gong. I told him what Falun Gong is based on and that I have practiced it for some 2.5 years and that I had started to read about it around 3.5 years ago.
He then asked me what I had gained from it. I then noticed that his aggression changed to curiosity about why, I, a westerner would be practising Falun Gong. I explained to him all the benefits I have received and how it has made me a better person. I asked him how practising Zhen Shan Ren in our everyday lives in all instances could make us bad people and make Falun Gong bad.
He then got told to come with the rest of the group towards the check in area. I continued to talk and walk with him. He seemed to soften further and so I again took out the newspaper and asked him why he was afraid to read something, which would give him information about what was really happening in China. He then said "Okay, give it to me" and he snatched it from my hands.
As soon as he started to look at it and saw the photos of the 35 westerners at Tiananmen that I had told him about he looked stunned and carefully focused at it and eagerly kept reading the whole paper. I then told him that I had the whole thing on video and asked if he wanted to see it. He quickly said yes and guided me to some seats nearby and called over some of the others to also see it.
As I prepared the computer to show the video I also pulled out a number of other truth clarifying materials I had been keeping in a folder with me that were in Chinese. He eagerly took this information and looked at it silently and quickly with great interest. His energy had totally changed by this stage. I showed him and the lady who initially had told me that I was mad the video, and to see the change in these people go from anger and hatred of me and Dafa, to interest and gratitude for being told the Truth, was very moving.
The man was then asked to go again quickly by the rest of his group and he asked me if he could take the truth clarifying information I had shown him. I of course gave it to him and he looked at me saying "Thank you, I will find out the Truth!". As he and the lady left I was moved to tears after having seeing how the Truth can change someone so quickly.
I was very glad I had not walked away from them when they were rude to me initially, and felt bad for even having the thought of walking away. I was also very glad that the Sydney practitioner had loaned me this laptop as I have now used it for the same purpose a number of times.
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