On September 7, an introductory course on Falun Gong (also known as Falun Dafa) was officially taught at the University of South Carolina’s Aiken campus. This is the first university course in the United States since the teaching of Falun Gong by its founder, Li Hongzhi, in 1992 in China.
According to Minghui.org, the introductory course includes clarifying the status and the significance of Falun Gong in China’s traditional Buddhist culture, learning the Falun Gong book Zhuan Falun and the five exercises, the CCP’s persecution of Falun Gong for 17 years and live organ harvesting from Falun Gong practitioners, and the history of truth clarifying.
The University of South Carolina Aiken campus is a public state university that provides a 4-year undergraduate college education and advanced degree programs. In 2016, it ranked first among Southern regional public universities, according to The U.S. News and World Report. It also ranked among the top three best Southern universities for 18 years, and from 2002-2016, it ranked first.
Tenured professor Dr. Xie Tian teaches the Falun Gong course. In addition to students from the campus, people outside the school also applied to attend. After open enrollment, 29 local residents signed up for the class, plus professors, and an ex-president of the university.
On the first day, students gained a preliminary understanding of the characteristics of Falun Gong, and also were introduced to several sets of exercises, according to Professor Xie Tian. After a successful first class, students were pleasantly surprised, and they thanked Professor Xie.
One of the students, Tom Howard Mann, is a retired honorary lifetime president of the university. He said that this was his first experience with Falun Dafa. In the past, he only heard news reports and knew almost nothing about Falun Dafa.
“I’m very interested in learning more; about how to straighten myself and be responsible for some of my feelings. I’m retired. I think this is an important part of the lifelong learning; now is a good opportunity to learn what I did not know before,” said Dr. Mann.
Kelly Moshina had learned yoga before, and she said:
“Falun Gong is so much better, and I want to learn a lot more. It is so exciting! I am so glad I came to the class today.”
“I have a 5-year-old daughter, and this class will help me to reduce my stress. The content of this course is excellent, and it provides a lot of information. We have just tried the exercises, and I am quite relaxed. I really like our teacher (Professor Xie Tian) and his lecture is amazing, introducing a lot of history. A great class!”
Given the positive responses from students in the first class, Professor Xie Tian said that he was pleased to see so many people who liked Falun Gong and requested to learn it. The course will continue so more Americans can experience the wonders of Falun Dafa.
Editor: David Clapp