The annual Tomb-Sweeping Day is coming again. Due to the epidemic situation this year, I couldn’t go back to my hometown to offer sacrifices to my elder sister, but her face and voice appear in my mind from time to time. I appreciate my sister’s hard-work and simplicity and miss the good time I spent with her. Also, I thought of the miseries my elder sister had suffered when she was tortured to death by disease for refusing medical treatment, believing in Li Hongzhi's theory of “eliminating karma.”
My elder sister Liang Zhu (pseudonym) was a cashier of a catering service company in Meizhou City, Guangdong Province. Due to its poor performance, the company went bankrupt, and my elder sister was out of work. Afterward, my elder sister and her husband divorced due to marital discord. Being unable to land a job for a long time, elder my sister, with a son living with her, had to work in my younger sister's dessert shop to earn a meager income in support of her family. The setbacks in her career and failure in her marriage had brought so heavy a burden on her that she felt very depressed and sighed all day long, and as a result, she suffered from gastrointestinal disease.
During the summer of 1999, Li Mei (pseudonym), one of my elder sister's classmates, came to my elder sister’s house, telling her that she was practicing Falun Gong and that it was very good for health. Then, Li Mei introduced several Falun Gong books to my elder sister, promising to teach her to practice Falun Gong when she was free. From then on, my elder sister often practiced Falun Gong with Li Mei and other practitioners on Saturday night in order to recover from her illness. However, her gastrointestinal problems hadn’t improved after several years, no matter how hard she practiced.
In March 2005, Li Mei came to the dessert shop where my elder sister worked, only to find that my elder sister was sallow, emaciated, and listless. Learning that my elder sister didn't spend enough time practicing, Li Mei severely criticized her, "Sister Zhu, you spend too little time practicing. How can you make further advancement?" Then she introduced her experience in practicing Falun Gong, and asked my elder sister to be diligent in "sending forth righteous thoughts" and not to take any medicine or injections, so as to "eliminate karma" and cure her gastrointestinal disease. Seeing the puzzled expression on the face of my elder sister who was still afflicted with a lingering disease after practicing Falun Gong for so long, Li Mei emphasized loudly, "Master said that taking medicine will not eliminate your karma. Doctors haven’t practiced cultivation, so they have no such power and virtue. They will only aggravate your diseases and press the diseases into your body." Besides, Li Mei reminded my elder sister again and again not to forget to learn the Fa in the process of her practicing.
My elder sister seemed to have understood that she might as well learn the Fa since practicing Falun Gong didn’t work for her. Therefore, she began to read the Falun Gong books, and as a result of the long-term “guidance” by her fellow practitioners, she slowly accepted the so-called Falun Gong principles, i.e. "Truthfulness, Compassion and Forbearance," believing that following these principles would be beneficial to both the society and herself. She felt that these principles would not only teach people to be kind, but also promote their morality, and she was convinced that Li Hongzhi could "eliminate karma" for his adherents, help cleanse their bodies and dispel their diseases. In particular, she was amazed by Li Hongzhi's solemn promises, such as that "I have countless law-bodies;” that “my law-bodies are so numerous that they are beyond calculation;” and that “I can look after as many people as I want, maybe the entire human race.” My elder sister was both grateful and proud that the personal safety of Dafa disciples could be protected by Li Hongzhi’s Law Bodies. Therefore, she constantly prayed for the protection by Li Hongzhi's Law Bodies when practicing Falun Gong.
However, the reality is always cruel. Whether practicing Falun Gong or learning the Fa, my elder sister couldn’t have her gastrointestinal disease cured. Seeing that my elder sister got so emaciated, our family members were so worried that we urged her to go to the hospital for treatment. To help her get medical treatment, my mother and we brothers, each contributing some money, pooled together more than 50,000 yuan as her medical expenses. But my elder sister refused to go to the hospital for treatment, no matter how hard we tried. She was obsessed with Falun Gong, believing that Li Hongzhi's Law Bodies would protect her. In her view, illnesses are the result of evil deeds done by a person in his or her previous life; only by practicing Gong and learning the Fa can one eliminate “sick karma”; and if one sees a doctor, his or her condition will be more serious when one gets sick next time, as doctors can't eliminate karma. So, that’s why my elder sister refused to see a doctor. In the end, she gave back to us all the money we raised for her.
Since May 2005, my sister began to call her fellow practitioners every day, asking them to "send righteous thoughts" for her to alleviate her disease. To "eliminate karma", my elder sister asked a few fellow practitioners including Li Mei and Aunt Liu, whether in the day or night, to come to her house, where they would sit together cross-legged, "sending righteous thoughts" for her and praying for Li Hongzhi to eliminate her "karma" and recover her health as soon as possible.
One of my elder sister’s friends who worked in a hospital was shocked and angry when he heard about my sister’s story. He rushed to my elder sister's house and sent her fellow practitioners away politely, urging my elder sister to believe in modern medicine and go to the hospital for treatment. Based on the symptoms, he estimated that my elder sister was suffering from gastric ulcer, which was a common digestive tract disease and must be treated early. If it was not cured in time, he said, the resulting complications such as upper gastrointestinal bleeding, ulcer perforation, pyloric obstruction and cancerization might occur. However, no matter what he said, my elder sister strongly opposed him, considering his words as an exaggeration just to scare her. As a Falun Gong practitioner, she thought, she wasn’t an ordinary person and wouldn’t believe in the “medical nonsense”. She obstinately believed that only by practicing Falun Gong and learning the Fa could Li Hongzhi help her eliminate her sick karma and get through the difficulties safely.
Nevertheless, all the efforts made by my elder sister, from practicing Falun Gong to studying the Fa, and asking her fellow practitioners to “send righteous thoughts” for her, failed to eliminate her disease. Li Hongzhi's Law Bodies had never emerged, nor had the miracles she had been expecting. As my elder sister was getting weaker day by day with her health deteriorating, our family members couldn’t bear to see her like this anymore. On January 3, 2006, my elder brother forcibly sent her to the hospital, where she was diagnosed with advanced colorectal cancer after a series of examinations. The doctor said that she needed to be hospitalized immediately as her cancer cells had spread. Unfortunately, the following surgery and chemotherapy she received failed to save her life.
It wasn’t until the end of her life that she had finally understood she had been deceived by Li Hongzhi, but it was too late then. She left the world at the age of 50 with deep regret and brought endless pain to all our family members.