Introducing Falun Dafa at the Practise Site in front of San Francisco City Hall

Shared at the 2002 San Francisco Bay Area Experience Sharing Conference
By a Practitioner from California

In front of San Francisco City Hall, trees nicely line both sides of the streets. In the summer, breezes blow the leaves, saying hello to people, and welcoming them to come under their shade to rest. In the winter, the leaves are gone. Barren branches stand like guards, to keep the square from looking desolate, reflecting the glorious glow radiating from the golden paint on the black dome of City Hall. City Hall is a famous landmark in the San Francisco Bay Area, attracting tourists from all around the world.

A few practitioners established the Practise site in April 2000. Since then, all of us have come here to Practise persistently. Some practitioners come at 6 o'clock in the morning and stay until noon, some take buses for a couple of hours to come here, some just distribute Dafa materials to people. At first, this Practise site was mainly for introducing Dafa and telling the truth to people, but gradually it has become a Practise site that practitioners from other cities look for when coming to San Francisco to visit.

It is not easy for tourists from around the world to make the trip here and see City Hall. Some have come alone. Some have come in groups. Some only stay for 3 to 5 minutes to take a picture, and some stay for 10 minutes or so. Some stay longer, about half an hour. They go to City Hall and take a quick tour. All of them wish that they had more time, and most of them would most likely never be able to come here again. The place that we do our Practise is a good spot. Quite often the tourists would capture us in their pictures, sometimes knowingly so, sometimes not.

Among the tourists who come here, quite a few have come from Mainland China. They include people of all different backgrounds. Some odds and ends about our activities were quite interesting, some even a bit exciting. We describe them in the following sequences.

Once a young couple from Beijing said to us: "Wow, Falun Gong. Giving us such nicely printed fliers too. Thanks a lot. I'll bring them back to let all my friends read them. Let them know about the bogus lies that were told. I have told you that I had helped a Falun Gong practitioner. The police tried to catch him but I hid him. The police did not catch him. Those police were out of line. They focused their efforts on good people. Oh, great, you are giving me a VCD too. Thanks. I am bringing it back to show it to everyone."

Once a few tourists from Shanghai came. They were very concerned that the customs inspector, would discover the VCDs, and wondered whether they should bring them home or not. The practitioner told them: " Do not worry about this. I guarantee you there will not be a problem." The lady among them took all the disc's without further hesitation. Her courage was truly remarkable.

There was a group of well-dressed people. Experience told us that they were high officials in Mainland China. A practitioner took the truth clarifying material to the group, smiling genuinely. She said to everyone she encountered: "Please take a look. I guarantee that it will be good for you." Suddenly a voice arose, with an air of arrogance, "We are from Inner Mongolia. This group represents the legislature there." The practitioner said: "Sure. But there are some materials here introducing the law of a higher level." Immediately some others in the group said: "Give me one." Thus, truth-clarifying materials such as China Report, Qingliu, and The Choice were all passed on to them.

Once a practitioner walked up to a group of people who had just gotten off the bus. One group member asked what she was distributing. She answered: "It is the truth about Falun Dafa." The entire group walked to the other side without saying anything. After touring the inside of City Hall, three of them walked toward our side and were looking at us expectantly from a distance. As soon as we gave them the material, they folded them into their handbags or pockets, and walked away, as though nothing had happened.

After a long period of distributing materials, we have all developed a feeling for situations. Sometimes we could feel a stronger repelling field associated with a particular group. Their demeanour was usually more rigid, and nobody would take our material when we walked up to them. Some people would become hesitant, some would walk closer to us to take a look, and some would even take our materials. Sometimes we would be standing by the bus to distribute the materials to the tourists as soon as they got off the bus, and everyone would take them. These were mostly either the European or American tourist groups. Tourists from Taiwan were more willing to chat with us, and were more likely to take our materials. Sometimes they would flip through them and yell: "How can Mainland China be so horrible?"

A French tour guide introduced Falun Gong to his group before he introduced City Hall. He could pronounce very accurately "Falun Gong" in Mandarin. The group members all came to take our materials, and were happy to see that the materials were in French.

A lawyer came to take a large amount of truth-clarifying materials, both in English and in Chinese, to learn more about the truth, for a case he was handling. Some people came to learn Falun Gong so that they could apply for permanent residency. Practitioners would tell them the reasons why Dafa should not be taken advantage of in this way.

There was also a German mother-daughter couple who specifically made the trip to come and get the materials. They learned the Practise exercises right on the spot.

There is a homeless lady who is already trying to do the full lotus. She has read Zhuan Falun three times already.

There is a man from India who would smile at us and do "heshi" to greet us every time he passes by.

We know very well that there are all kinds of people with all sorts of mentalities passing by our Practise site and watching us.

Nowadays, from our experience of spreading the truth, we can see that each and every practitioner has the ability to carry out truth clarifying tasks independently. They can be very articulate. The effect would be better when only one person speaks, instead of two or three speaking as a group, because one person can organise well his or her own thoughts. When two or three people speak as a group, the content becomes sometimes a bit disorganised when one tries to add what one believes others are missing. We are all cultivating ourselves. To be able to cooperate and coordinate with practitioners, we must still rely on each of us looking inward.

Thank you very much.

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