Origins: Founded by Li Hongzhi in 1992 in China
Adherents: (apprx) 10 million
God(’s) and the Universe: Countless gods and spiritual beings. Demonic aliens.
Human situation and life purpose: The Falun (wheel) is an energy source located in the navel. Goal is spritual transcendence, achieved by practicing Falun Gong.
Afterlife: Not addressed
Practices: Five exercises to strengthen the Falun. Cultivation of truthfulness, benevolence and forbearance. Meat eating discouraged.
Texts: Zhuan Falun and other writings by Master Li
History and Beliefs
Falun Gong (Chinese, “Practice of the Wheel of Dharma”) is a Chinese movement founded by Li Hongzhi in 1992. Its adherents exercise ritually to obtain mental and spiritual renewal.
The teachings of Falun Gong draw from the Asian religious traditions of Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism and Chinese folklore as well as those of Western New Age movements…
Falun Gong has its origins in Qi Gong (Chinese: “Energy Working”), the use of meditation techniques and physical exercise to achieve good health and peace of mind, which has a long history in Chinese culture and religion. However, practitioners in modern China present these techniques as purely secular in an effort to escape official restrictions against independent religious activity.
But in the late 20th century, new masters appeared who taught forms of Qi Gong more clearly rooted in religion. The most influential of these, Li Hongzhi (born May 13, 1951, according to followers, or July 7, 1952, according to critics who contend that Li adjusted his birthdate to be the same as the Buddha’s), worked in law enforcement and corporate security before becoming the full-time spiritual leader of Falun Gong in 1992… More